Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Maddie on Counting

Human beings seem to derive an insatiable sense of satisfaction from counting down to things. We make little chains and remove a link each day as we head towards Christmas, astronauts can't seem to make a 9 ton space craft take off without a little voice over a loud speaker telling them when to go and mothers - oh' mothers love to countdown when trouble is brewing.

I am proud to say I am a card holding member of the count down club. I've counted my kids down from many a horrible act of toddlerness. Most notably were the "I am counting down from 10 and there better not be any more lipstick on my bathroom floor" incident of 2008 and the even more concerning "I am counting to 2 and my Godiva chocolate bar from Valentine's Day better be back in that fridge and untouched" incident of 2010.

Today we had another notable "counting down" disciplinary debacle. Wee 3 who I really, really do love was pitching a fit because I had informed her that she would be picking up all of the cheese crackers she had stomped into the carpet while I was laying Wee 4 down for his nap.  Maddie felt this request was simply unreasonable and clearly below her station, so she raised one eyebrow caustically and said - "NO, I don't think so."

I replied, "Oh, I really do think so - double time Missy."

My children normally take my usage of military vocabulary as an indicator that I am not going to back down and then comply posthaste - Maddie however, having never endured the delights of boot camp or Air Assault school and who is quite a bit more sure of the glories of heaven than her sisters was unimpressed. She turned her back on me and continued to fluff the tail of her favorite My Little Pony.

So as you can clearly see I was left with no choice, it was time for the countdown - and I assure you I can put Dick Clark and New Year's Eve celebrators worldwide to shame with my countdown voice.

I got right down on Maddie's level, looked her in the eyes and said, "You will be cleaning this floor up by the time I get to zero, are we clear?"
10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 .....

Reluctantly, my tiny general turned, slumped her shoulders and defeatedly mumbled, "Okay, okay, mom. I am cleaning up."

A few moments later, the play room was cleaned to an acceptable standard for a 3 year old, and while I was pulling out the vacuum to capture the itty bitty crumb escapees Maddie turned and said to me.

"Mom, I'm hungry, I want some lunch."

I replied as I was kneeling down to unravel the vacuum cord, "Maddie one minute, let me finish with this vacuuming."

Ever the star pupil, Wee three walked right up to me at eye level, took my chin in her hands and said. "I can count too - I want my lunch, 5-4-3-2-1!"

Thus ends another moment of domestic bliss. I'm taking comfort in the fact that she is already apprenticing for a role as an astronaut.

A wee bit counted upon,