I woke up to this morning to the sound of Dean helping the kids get out their winter gear. Mabel told me, “Dad’s taking us sledding!”
I called toward the other room. “Dean, Mabel has rehearsal at 10. And Isaac has a party at 11.”
“I know. We’ll be back in time. We might not have snow again for another month. It’s supposed to warm up by Tuesday.”
A minute later I heard Hazel protesting loudly that she didn’t want to go sledding. Mabel was trying to argue with her, but Dean was telling Hazel, “You want to stay here with Mommy? That’s okay.”
I called toward the other room, “Hazel, come snuggle with me.”
Dean told me, “I don’t want to try to talk her into it.”
“I know. I agree. Just let me talk to her for a minute. Hazel, do you want to come up here on my bed and snuggle with me?” I knew she would say yes, because she always likes the idea of snuggling. I also knew it would take her about 10 seconds to get bored of snuggling.
Hazel climbed up next to me and I put some covers over her. She said, “I don’t want to go sledding!”
I asked her, “So, you don’t want to go slide down hills in the snow with the other kids? You want to stay here and snuggle with me?”
“I DO want to go slide down hills in the snow. But I don’t want to go sledding.”
“That’s okay, you can stay here with me. But if you go with the kids, you can slide down hills in the snow. That’s what sledding is, sledding is sliding down hills in the snow. And you can play in the snow, too.”
Mabel jumped in, “I’ll help you build a snowman.”
“So, what do you want to do?” I repeated. “Do you want to go play in the snow with the other kids and go sledding, or do you want to stay here with me and snuggle?”
“I DO want to go sledding.”
I only wish my kid-whispering skills were so refined when it comes to dealing with older kids. Or grown-ups.
Yesterday I was making some shrink-film jewelry for Rose to take to a friend’s birthday party, so while I had all the supplies out, I helped Hazel make a pendant and helped her string a necklace. I was pretty impressed that she could follow a simple pattern when stringing beads (large bead, small bead, large bead, small bead) but not surprised when she lost interest quickly. After she lost interest, she was throwing the beads in the air to land on herself, while talking about decorations and wedding parties. So I finished the necklace for her.
I need to get some stronger cord for stringing necklaces, though, because even though I told her to be careful with the necklace and not pull on it too hard, an hour later the necklace broke in the car, and the pendant got lost.
Oh, well–at least she had fun wearing it for an hour.