I started the deep cleaning of the house for upcoming Thanksgiving. Not that it did any good. The kids just whipped back through. Allie literally setting up a giant tent in the now cleaned and spotless living room. Two chairs, blankets, you know. The kind of survival skills kids come built right in with. “How to survive those long, warm afternoons tucked safely under a roof.”
As much as I encourage my kids to be creative and entertain themselves, I’m slightly ashamed to admit, though only slightly, that I flipped my lid. Screaming like a baboon loud enough that I’m sure the neighbor’s could hear. When I say, “Entertain yourself,” I mean productively. Don’t be afraid of the toilet brush. Don’t be afraid to grab out the carpet cleaner and give the rugs a good deep clean. Sadly, they never think to entertain themselves this way.
In other news…
I woke Paigey up this morning to find that she had already gotten dressed for school at some point in this night. She does this frequently. Finds an outfit she can’t wait to wear, and just wears it to bed. She’s wearing a long, flow-y skirt. And an almost non-existent sleeved shirt. We live in New England. And it’s November. The end of November. This is NOT an acceptable outfit.
I knew I wouldn’t be able to talk her out of it. I also knew that she would possibly lose limbs at recess due to frostbite. And then the school nurse would most certainly ream me out. I’m slightly afraid of the school nurse. I eyeballed her all morning, thinking of ways to sneakily keep her warm. Without her knowing I’m doing just that. Nothing insults her more than my questioning of her outfits.
“Paige, why don’t you go throw on a pair of those really cool, interesting new tights that Nana bought you by the dozens?”
“You mean all the neat ones with the shapes and patterns all over them?”
“Yeah,” I said, casually sipping my coffee, trying my damnedest not to show concern.
“Okay!” she said brightly, and disappeared up to her room.
Success! Until she came downstairs minutes later with hot pink, wedged ankle boots in hand, and no tights. “Uh-uh,” she said, shaking her head.
Crap. She caught on somewhere between the living room and her room. I had to break out the big guns. “Look it. It’s FRIGID outside. You NEED something on your legs. If you don’t agree to those nice, thick, warm tights, I’m going to march you back upstairs and make you change into jeans.”
Jeans is a four letter word, as far as Paige is concerned. I am not to suggest them, she would prefer not to wear them, and don’t you DARE suggest to change out of a skirt/dress for them.
“Fine,” she sighed, defeated. “I’ll wear the tights.” If only I could convey her tone here. Paige, while seven in years, is clearly already a teen in spirit.
She dug around her drawer and came up with a very cute white pair of tights, with light blue snowflakes printed on them. Not a perfect match for her outfit, but not bad, either. And dear God, I was NOT about to suggest she go upstairs and find another pair.
Three minutes before we were due out at the bus stop, I casually suggested a zippered, hooded, fuzzy sweater. It seems though that if I introduce an accessory that’s easily removable, it does not offend Her Majesty’s sensibilities. “Here. Just for the bus stop. And recess. And if you get a little chill in class in between. You don’t have to wear it if you’re warm enough, but I’d feel better if you had it if you needed it.”
There was not so much as a splutter of objection. Of course, she was also watching a new-to-her episode of Animaniacs. Maybe that’s the key. Put on something fascinating and then layer her up.
For now, Allie is throwing an absolute shit fit because I suggested she get dressed. I must go calm down the seething ball of rage.