Out of the mouths of babes

I forget what prompted it, but Eliza and Lucy were talking, and Eliza responded to something Lucy had said with a dubious tone of voice, and Lucy yelled back, “Don’t judge me, Eliza!”


I try to walk Lucy to daycare when possible, or failing that, I try to pick her up. In return, I get 7 minutes of unadulterated 4-year-old, which is mostly about indignant, lisped recountings of her day, with lots of gesturing and fail-boat-y attempts to skip and/or balance on the curb. She can also be counted on to trot out some startlingly adult idioms, which is always a treat. Yesterday, she was clearly in love with the expression, “The thing is…” because she started every sentence with it.


Eliza had a weekend of nerdery with one of her best friends — they attended 1 1/2 days of workshops in things like robotics and programming. My friend (whose kid it was) and I let them go by themselves in part because it was at my workplace, which Eliza knows, and we figured they’d have a buddy system in place.

They bought lunch at the cafeteria, and then Eliza used the money she had left over to go into the bookstore nearby and purchase the next two books in a series she is in love with. This was not at all what I had authorized, but I also didn’t forbid it, and as someone who occasionally re-organizes her entire work week to sneak out to see Mad Max, I didn’t feel like I could really call out someone else Demented Fannish Arts Consuming.

Our tale does have a sad ending though, because she brought the book to school and tried to sneak-read it in math class, where it was promptly confiscated by the teacher until parent-teacher conferences in October. Harsh! I give her credit, though: she confessed to me tonight, when really, she could’ve easily gotten away with it. She’s pretty bummed about not being able to find out what happens next for another 4 weeks, but I respect the teacher’s call, and I told her it was an opportunity to learn about the consequences of poor decision-making. I’m sure she was all “PLLLLRT! to you and your lectures, woman” in her mind, which I get.


In case you are wondering, she is now 85 pounds of elbows. She is taller than her principal and several teachers. That child is gangly like it’s her JOB.


Does anyone else favor the “we’re trapped in a car and so I will talk to you about uncomfortable things because a. you can’t escape and b. we don’t have to make eye contact” mode of parenting? I’m a big fan, personally. I have brought up puberty, gay rights, racism, gender equality, that friend who does weird things (everyone has one of those right? the friend you don’t want to shut out because you can tell their home life sucks but man is that kid a mess?), etc. Eliza doesn’t so much ask questions outright — although asking me to explain war the other day was a doozy. Hell kid, I don’t have a clue! — so much as sort of run thesis statements vis-a-vis her world views by me. She also likes stories about dumb crap me and my sister did as kids. Sorry, Jo.


She is really starting to feel like a tween, and man is that name accurate. On the one hand she can be so mature and on the other, she forgets to brush her teeth and hair before school ALL THE TIME. And she uses programs to build fairly sophisticated animation snippets — but they’re about donuts with fox ears. It is in equal measures baffling, endearing, irritating, inspiring and astounding to watch her morph back and forth in front of me.


State of pop culture:

Eliza: still rabbiting on about Imagine Dragons and Warriors books.

Lucille: FROZENFROZENFROZEN. And Taylor Swift. And shouty songs by Fall Out Boy. Also has a soft spot for Maroon 5.

AM: endlessly replaying the elevator fight sequence from Winter Soldier, watching Fury Road. Also trying to figure out if I were a casting agent, what would be the ultimate role for each of the Hollywood Chrises. Pine needs to be Mirror Kirk, obviously, but that’s as far as I get before thinking about Evans’ beard distracts me again.


I own a pair of tonfa now. Taking bets on how long before I fling one into the TV.


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2 Responses to Out of the mouths of babes

  1. Mama says:

    Thought tonfas were shoes (because you indicated that they come in pairs). Big surprise when I googled them :-)

  2. Melissa says:

    Oh man, do I hear you on the tweendom! A and I have these almost-adult conversations and then she blows up when you ask her to put away her backpack or something. I’ve been more and more mindful of the fact that as the kids get older, the parenting practices we use really need to be more … egalitarian, I guess? We were never huge on flat-out ordering the kids around, but there was some of that when they were younger. As we see them developing into their own people, it’s very clear that’s not the way to go because it doesn’t teach them anything about being an adult and managing their own time and emotions.

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