Wednesday, June 14, 2006
What passes for rational thought at 8 a.m. (When the mouse is away): Ice cream is good for you. It has milk.
Slipping into a morning routine, for me, is a little like trying to hobble around in ill-fitting shoes. You always get tripped up by something unexpected. The only thing I can count on, it seems, is that nothing ever goes as planned.
If I am alone, the television gets turned on first thing. I know Clifford will help me get ready and keep her calm while I make breakfast and pack lunches.
I usually start our morning drill by offering her suggested meals. Waffles? "No." Pancakes? "No." Good Eggs? "No. No. No." How about some cereal? You like cereal. ... No.
"I'm fine. Don't want brefast, mama. Jus milsh, shank you."
Oh, alright. You'll eat when you get hungry.
When Clifford ends our out-of-the-house day begins. We usually gather our many bags and head for the stairs. Except today when I click off the television, she heads for the kitchen and starts to climb up to the counter.
"Can I have some seer-we-wool?" She asks.
"Sure, honey. We'll have to take it with us, though," I say as I open the cabinet and reach for the box of rice squares. But in my way, and in full view of my little boss lady, is the box of sugared ice cream cones. I try to shield it from her view but it's too late. She's seen it and now wants ice cream.
"We don't have ice cream for breakfast," I lie. (Of course we do, sometimes. Especially when dad's not looking. Don't you?)
"I WAAAAAAN it. PEAAAAAAAAAAAASE?"
"No. I am making you a bag of cereal for the road. Then we are marching down those stairs, young lady, and getting in that car."
I don't even want to describe what happened next. Suffice it to say, we got down the stairs and into the car. And tonight I'll be washing the car seat.