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I was throwing together a chicken stir fry, and the kids were happily (pssht) playing outside.

“Mo-om!  Allie hit me!” Paige tattled, running into the kitchen.

“And what did you do to your sister that she hit you?”

“NOTHING!” she yelled.  I’m an only child, so I can imagine the irritation when your younger sibling hits you/breaks something/eats the cat and you constantly get in trouble for it.

“Are you sure?  Because you’re a horrible liar,” I reminded her, as she streaked from the kitchen, already forgetting that she was angry with her sister.  “And your sister doesn’t usually attack without provocation,” I followed up.  There’s a sentence I never saw myself uttering in my younger years.  Somehow these moments never make it into your fantasies when you’re a newly married couple, and one of you utters the sentence, “I know.  Let’s have kids.”  No, the nightmare that becomes your weekend never enters your utopian dreams.

Allie arrived in the kitchen moments later, following her sister so she could continue her torture practice session.

“Did you hit your sister?” I demanded.

“Uh, yes.”  Well, at least she’s honest.

“Why?”

“Uh, because sissy no push me,” she explained.

Her speech, while coming along nicely, still isn’t 100% clear, so I always follow up her statement with what I think she said a) so I know I have interpreted correctly and b) so she can hear how the sentence should be pronounced.  “Sissy pushed you?” I asked, thinking that the “no” was accidently put in there.

“No.  Sissy NO push me.”

“She didn’t push you?”

“Yeah, yeah, yeah.”  She nodded enthusiastically.

“Okay, but that doesn’t really explain why you pushed her.  Why did you push her?”

“Because sissy no push me, and then I hit her, and then she no push me again.”

I wish I could discipline my youngest.  And sometimes I actually manage to keep a straight face and do just that.  Statements like this however usually have me trying to hold in a gut-busting laugh.  I looked at Papa, and his face told me I had definitely heard her right.

“Be nice to your sister.  She’s the only one you’ve got,” I reminded her.  A sentence they hear often.  “And don’t hit her anymore either, because she doesn’t like it.  And it makes me cry.”

She may have figured out already that if she can keep me laughing, it cuts her punishments in half.

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