We are entering a new phase with this little one. She is five, though she will tell you she is 6. She is the most tender of my three girls, but the most sneaky and devious. She loves me dearly, but I'm pretty certain she thinks I'm an idiot. This will be exemplified in the following soliloquy. We have had a rough week. We, Kayci and I, have grown in both respect and fear of each other this week. For this I can only say, I'm glad this week is over and she is still alive.
The first occurrence this week is titled, "I Can Sleep With Gum in my Mouth and Mom will Never Know It." Anyone with children knows that gum is a treat straight from heaven for kids. Especially the type that makes bubbles. If I have a pack of gum anywhere in the near vicinity of my children I am bombarded with three, "Can I have gum?" questions. Of course, being the kind and gentle mother I am, I relinquish my "stash" of gum to my sweet little girls. The rule is: If I see it or hear it, it's in the trash. Usually the girls are good about it. Before naps I say, "Spit out your gum; if you fall asleep with it in your mouth you could choke or worse it could get caught in your hair." (Yes, that is worse than choking in my opinion because getting gum out of hair is torture for both parties). This particular day I yelled my usual request, double checked with a loud "Did everyone spit out their gum?" To which was responded an enthusiastic trio of "Yes!" This is where I begin to show why Kayci thinks I'm an idiot. You won't believe this is true, but I was here and it happened. Two hours pass and my beautiful sleepy girl, Kayci comes stumbling out of her room. I love the tussled hair and sheet lined faces. I gather her up into a warm embrace and notice that her hair is not innocently tussled, but strangely matted in place on one side. "Matted with what?" you ask in surprise. Gum. Yes, blasted gum. Here's the kicker though. I asked Kayci if she slept with gum in her mouth and she looked me straight in the eye and said "No, I put it in the trash." I don't remember much after this point except she now has a short spot on her head and she is not allowed to have gum for a very long time.
Picking pieces off plants is a new fun past time for this child, we call Kayc Baycer. (pronounced case baser). At the place at which I play tennis, the grounds are immaculately groomed. Every beautiful flower and bush is strategically placed to make the grounds just gorgeous. The spread of color is well plotted and well planned. The crew it must take to keep this place looking like something out of the Huntington Gardens must be extensive. Kayci decided to pick a couple of leaves off of some nicely sculpted hedges...I think they are in the shape of bears. I firmly told her to not do that, clearly, I thought, explaining that a lot of hard work goes into making everything look nice. You may think, "What's the big deal Jenn, it's just a couple of leaves." To this I laugh haughtily and say, "It never stops there." Sure enough within literal minutes of my very detailed and eloquent dissertation on "Why we Don't pull leaves off of People's Plants," she pulled an entire stock (about 3 ft long) of a not yet fully bloomed purple flower. The end of the stalk was actually dripping plant juice. With this plant juice I traumatized my child by saying, "You see this dripping? This is like blood Kayci. You killed it!" Her response, "Mom do you love me more than you love plants?" ....Maybe I am an idiot.
Today after a week long battle to keep the kids out of the cookies we had left over from the soccer party, I accidentally left the cookies on the table overnight. Sweet Kayci, after getting herself dressed, throwing away her pull up, nicely laying out clothes for her sister and snuggling up with me, said, "Mom, I think you should put the cookies in a higher place so none of us will sneak any." At this time I looked down at this angelic face: beautiful brown eyes, cute little dimples and Oreo crumbs surrounding her little perfect mouth. "Kayci," I said calmly, "Did you have a cookie?" She carefully calculated her response. I could see her 5 year old mind working hard to come up with a worthy retort. She stuck that precious thumb in her mouth and nodded innocently and said, "Go ahead and spank me...I couldn't help myself...Mom, this is what kids do." My response...one cookie...one swat...all is forgiven.
In summary: I love this kid. Soooo much. She makes my life better just being in it.