PG (Parental Guidance Advised)
Bedtime has various difficulty settings in our house. It seems to go in cycles; it'll be easy for a while, then the seasons will change, or they get sick, or it's a full moon, or something. Suddenly it all becomes a battle.
My three-year-old boy twin, Finn, is almost always happy to have a story, read for a while, then pull the covers up and doze off. Bless him.
His sister and his big brother, on the other hand, are masters of bedtime procrastination.
There's the traditional "I'm hungry", "I'm still hungry", "I need a drink of water", and "I just need to go to the toilet". Vieve also likes to enliven our evenings with "But my blankets aren't flat!" and the bellow every parent dreads, "I NEED HELP WIPING MY BOTTOM".
Someone apparently bumped last night's difficulty setting up to Insanity.
Having children is a great responsibility. You nurture them and teach them about the world. They're wide-eyed, innocent, waiting for knowledge.
But sometimes, just sometimes, I get the urge to mess with their trusting little minds.
My three-year-old twins have been in an anatomy phase lately. Vieve in particular has been endless with the "What's inside arms? What's inside stomachs? What's inside toes?" questions.
The other day she came into the kitchen while I was pulling a slow-cooked bacon hock apart, in order to extract the meat.
"What's those bits?"
Life with three-year-old boy/girl twins can be many things: tedious, hilarious, infuriating. The interactions between them are delightful, when they don't involve shrieking and hitting. For example, he other day they spent 20 minutes taking turns being the pussycat who frightened a little mouse under the queen's chair.
With two the same age, the individual developmental stages sometimes get lost in the general chaos, but it's been very apparent lately that Finn is going through some sort of wonder week. There's new logic, speech, and motor skills appearing out of nowhere.
He is one of those children who won't try doing something until he knows he can do it, and he is very particular indeed. Having had a successful cooking lesson, he has now decided that he will be responsible for his own orange slicing, thank you very much. He cut them beautifully and precisely into halves, quarters, eighths, without any help from me.
"Precise" is a good word for him, actually. Having spent Tuesday cutting out approximately 32,354 paper dolls for him and his sister to draw on, he finally drew his own and brought it to me to cut out. He's a lefty, and I still haven't got around to getting left-handed scissors for him.
(With apologies to Limahl)
Turn around, look at what you see
Laundry space is bursting at the seams
Washing is spread everywhere
Get it on the line
Leaving your kids naked
Is the answer
To the never-ending laundry
Ahh-ahh-ahh, ahh-ahh-ahh, ahh-ahh-ahh
Ahh-ahh-ahh, ahh-ahh-ahh, ahh-ahh-ahh
The washing done, it's a fantasy
Dream a dream, a life detergent-free
I loved baking with my eldest child when he was three or four. It was a fun, bonding experience, with the bonus of cupcakes at the end.
It's not so fun trying to bake with twins, though. There's too many fingers in the flour and sneezes in the bowl. You can't watch all the busy little hands, and make sure they haven't been up noses in the meantime, and crack eggs, and NO the mixer is NOT FOR YOUR SISTER'S HAIR.
I've tried the "I'll make muffins with him, and then cookies with you" approach, but they just can't stay away. They'll squabble over chairs with much shrieking and flailing of arms. By the time you've got them sorted, the oven's been on for 90 minutes and there's still nothing in it.
So baking doesn't happen as much as I would like. I miss you, cupcake.
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