Julie and I are the only ones home during the day. The older two are in school, obviously, and Marc’s off at work. And we aren’t joined at the hip. Julie normally bops around the house, doing this or that. Watches far too much television (but I justify it to myself by remembering that there’s eight feet of snow out there and it’s damn cold – plus she’s watching educational stuff…), she colors and builds, plays doctor. I do whatever it is that I do, sometimes it’s laundry and cleaning, sometimes I read, often we’ll cook together or I’ll read to her. But she’s used to entertaining herself, and as long as it’s not dangerous, I’ll usually let her play with whatever.
I wandered out of the bedroom and glanced into the living room, only to find my toddler sitting on the floor, playing Apples to Apples. She wasn’t really playing it, so much as she was sorting the cards into little piles. She’s big for piles. But the Apples to Apples game belongs to her older sister. And she knows that. She knows that she’s not allowed to play with it. I pointed out that Jessie would kill her if she knew what she was doing – and Julie looked at me meaningfully for minute and said “If you don’t tell her, she won’t know…”
And, because really, if you’re mature enough to make that connection, and to think of it as a logical response, then you’re probably old enough to handle the consequences. So I just laughed and told her to put it away when she was done. Which she did.
Sometimes, I really have to work hard at remembering that this kid is only two years old.