She looked at me in wide-eyed innocence. "But I'M not doing it, Mommy. It's Baby!"
Okay. I took a deep breath. "Baby, stop doing that!"
Of course Baby started to cry.
Downstairs to breakfast. My oldest son, who had woken up earlier, was eating Fun-Dip.
"We don't eat Fun-Dip for breakfast!" I informed him, although he knew that already.
He thought fast. "Well, I already had my breakfast."
"We still don't eat Fun-Dip at 8 a.m. in the morning."
Then I thought, hmmmm. I looked around the kitchen. It was spotless. (Let me rephrase that. My kitchen is never spotless, not with three kids. But it was as clean as I had left it the night before, which was a dead giveaway. My kids are seemingly incapable of having any kind of food item without leaving a complete chaotic mess in their wake.)
When I asked my son suspiciously what he'd eaten for breakfast, he said a waffle, but I knew there was only one left and it was still in the box. Meanwhile my other son told me he wanted a waffle for breakfast, so I put it in the toaster.
Then I talked to my other son about how when he lies to me it hurts my feelings. The usual parent stuff. He said sorry and said he would have a waffle after all. A real one.
I told him that his brother was having the last one.
He protested, "But that's all I want for breakfast!"
Other son: "But I asked first! I want the waffle!"
After an exhausting go around, my middle son said, "Oh, okay, I'll let Colin have the waffle - I'm going to have cereal."
I sighed and thanked him. Finally, finally we had resolved the waffle issue. Who wants to argue over waffles? I can think of better things to argue about...like toast!
But no. Colin said, "I don't want the waffle anymore anyway."
This is the part where I started banging my head on the kitchen counter. I took (another) deep breath.
"I've gone to the trouble to make the waffle (okay, I popped it in the toaster - but still!) and SOMEONE IS GOING TO EAT THE WAFFLE!"
Ryan said he would eat both his cereal and the waffle.
You see where I'm going, don't you? No one ate the waffle.
Kids are so cute and interesting, but they sure can drive you crazy, can't they?
I can't think of any other examples right now - oh wait, they're all coming back.
Like when we're driving to my parents' cottage and Ryan yells grumpily, "Are we THERE YET?"
"Umm...we haven't left the driveway, yet...so that would be a no," I inform him cheerfully (note that I'm still cheerful at this point).
Then he demands to know exactly how much longer to the cottage, in seconds, and when you do the math in your head and tell him because he insists he absolutely has to know the exact total, he starts counting. "1, 2, 3 ...."
And you think, it is four and a half hours to get to the cottage. And you realize with a sense of desperation that if you have to listen to him counting the entire time, you are not going to make it!
This is when I put the earphones of my iPod in my ears and when I notice gesticulating, I just mouth, "Can't hear you - I've got earphones in my ears!" (It works like a charm - I highly recommend it.)
The other thing is when they want a snack so they'll ask me what food we have. I will patiently list all the food we have in the cupboard and the fridge that they can have for a snack. I will wait. There will be a long pause, and when I finally prompt them with, "Well...what will you have, then," they'll look at me blankly and say, "What do we have again?"
My new answer: "Food - go eat it! Oh, and....love you!"