Friday, January 17, 2014

Mom as Managed by a Two Year Old

I had the perfect plan. It involved a trip to the library, dashing by the post office, and then a refreshing bike ride before lunch. My perfect plan was of course subject to the approval of my personal manager.

My daily personal manager consists of 1 two year old who grows more opinionated by the day as word count of her vocabulary expands. Negotiations started with getting dressed. She wanted to wear shorts and a pj shirt. Since it is winter, the shorts were not mother approved and not subject to negotiation either (at least I hoped so). We compromised on the pj shirt. She could wear it as long as she agreed to wear her sweater over it (one point for mom).

The second level of negotiations involved collecting library books to return to the library. I managed to scan all the books and ensure that no school library books were returned to the public library (unlike October's library book fiasco). Miss BellBell was doing her own book scan and determined that one particularly small board book MUST be returned to the library despite my insistence that it was in fact ours now (a hand me down book). Not wanting to further delay the perfect trip I allowed the small book into the library book bag thinking I could secretly hide it before it became library property.

Shoes were acquired and put on without any difficulties in part because I skipped the sock negotiations. (Yes my child went to the library sockless in winter. But we were in a car and not walking so frostbite wasn't a possibility.)

Once we reached the driveway negotiations began again. Miss BellBell climbed into the car and headed to the far back corner of the minivan to assert her independence and desire to sit in the "big kid" seats. I, not being a professional gymnast and not desiring to become one, tried verbal negotiations unsuccessfully and then resorted to physical relocation techniques. At last the Belle of the Minivan was safely secured in her 5 point harness with a blanket tucked over her feet in the middle row of the van.

Upon reaching the library we disembarked from the van. Miss BellBell wanted to be carried but I insisted she walk. I told her I had to carry the books. Indeed it would have been difficult to carry her and carry the books, but it was almost equally difficult to hold her hand with one hand and drag along an overstuffed book bag with the other hand. But she walked (another point for mom).

Once inside the library negotiations began yet again and Miss BellBell won her own points. I had forgotten about the stowaway small board book, but she hadn't. I tried once again to convince her that it was ours and we shouldn't return it to the library. Negotiation ended when the book went sliding down the return chute. (Hopefully it gets donated to the Friends of the Library book sale. And the loss of one book in hundreds is hardly catastrophic.)

The library was a hit with Miss BellBell because it was toddler story time and we arrived just in time for the interactive part. We laced a laminated ball, colored butterflies, worked blue puzzles, and concluded that the letter of the day was "B." (Maybe next time we'll make it in time for the story part too.)

We checked out our 3 board books and 1 mommy book and headed to the post office. I pre-empted the seat negotiations by lifting Miss BellBell into her car seat before she could head for the hills.

At the post office it was a good thing we were second in line. Any time someone spoke to Miss BellBell she hugged my leg thereby immobilizing me.

Post office errand was accomplished and we headed for home. The warmth of the sun combined with the increasing temperatures and the sweater proved a fatal combination for my planned bike ride. I turned around to see droopy eyes and say those fateful words, "don't fall asleep now." If only those magic words worked at home after lunch on super busy mom days, but alas they don't.

At home I carried the sleeping beauty in and laid her on the couch thinking she would wake up immediately. Foiled again. She slept. I read scriptures. She continued to sleep. I contemplated admitting defeat, but decided in favor of the old adage, "if you can't beat them, join them" and took a nap.

Maybe life as managed by a two year old isn't so bad after all. :)

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