Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Power Tools and Ice Cream

Sunday was a lovely day.

We began it with all four of us eating kolaches on our screened porch. We don't eat the kind with meat in them. Not even the ones with fruit in them. NO. The Swizzle kolaches (that we buy, not make) have chocolate or cream in them. It's one of the few breakfasts when I don't really feel a need to sweeten my tea.

We made it to church on time. We had lunch at church because the youth were having a fund raiser. They made burgers, including patties for us vegetarians. I about fell out of my chair laughing when Fr. D, sitting next to me, said, "Ugh! I got one of those Boca things!"

We came home and settled in for a relaxing afternoon. Twinkle went out to play. Around 2:30, Twinkle came in and said a family across the street, who were outside, had some ice cream and invited her to have some. I said yes, no problem. Ah, what a day.

Around 4, I heard a disturbance in the driveway. I opened the door, and Twinkle was crying and saying, "R is going to tell on me..." and various other things that I couldn't understand. R is a boy who lives in our cul-de-sac and is a few years older than Twinkle. He isn't the gentlest of people. He's the kid who was nuts as a younger kid, but seems to be mellowing out.

R is behind Twinkle trying to explain himself. When everything quiets down, I finally heard that Twinkle and GND "needed to build something." OK. Sounds fine. To build whatever it was, they took Mr. Swizzle's case of drill bits and the huge case with his big, powerful (cordless) drill in it over to GND's driveway.

Part of why Twinkle was crying was because, "Dad's screwdriver is broken. It won't work!" Can I hear a "Thank you God"?! The battery was run down. Thank you! R, being a boy in his early teens recognized the danger and came to let me know.

Now, I must say, neither of us have ever explicitly told Twinkle that the power tools are dangerous and that she must not touch them. We have NOW, but I can't blame her much for thinking it was a good idea. She and I had a chat, during which she calmed down and I told her she had to tell her daddy. Then her daddy came outside to mow the backyard and she lost her sh*t again. She calmed down again and I fed her the words for her to tell him what she'd done.

This wasn't really a major ordeal, looking back at it. She was greatly sorry and truly didn't have comprehension of the danger associated with her actions. I told her that she could stay outside and play, but not to ask for any more than that - like ice cream from the truck they could hear in the neighborhood.

Twinkle assured me, eventually, that she would not ask for ice cream if the truck came down our street - even though she really, really, (really) wanted some. Off she went, back out to play. I went back inside and called my mom to tell her about Friday's conversation and about the events of the day.

While we were talking, I heard the ice cream truck. It actually came down our street. "Poor Twinkle", I thought, "She's standing there watching it go right past her. She's probably going to have another meltdown." I told my mom that I needed to go and let Twinkle know it was time to come in.

Can you see it coming?

I went over to GND's driveway to find GND and Twinkle eating ice cream. I didn't scream!! GND's mom was standing there with them. We chatted a bit. GND's mom was holding a couple of dollars and asked the girls whose money it was. I said, "It's not Twinkle's. She didn't have any. I guess it's GND's." GND shakes her head, "No. That's Twinkle's money. It was in her pocket." Her mom was handing the money back and forth between me and GND. I finally took it and said, "Well, it's mine now." I wonder if/when GND is going to ask Twinkle for her money back.

As Twinkle and I entered the garage to go into the house, I said, "I hope that is really good. I want you to really enjoy it, because you are not going outside to play Monday or Tuesday." This set her off again and she actually yelled, "NO! I DON'T WANT TO ENJOY IT!" I told her if she stopped eating it and threw it away (she really hadn't eaten much) she still couldn't go outside on Monday, but we'd see about Tuesday. She started walking to the trash can eating as fast as she could. She opened the trash can and actually continued licking the thing as it got closer and closer to the trash can.

After she dropped it into the trash, she started begging to be able to go out Monday and Tuesday. I repeated Monday was a definite no, and Tuesday was a maybe. This caused her to start jumping up and down screaming, thereby ensuring Tuesday was a definite no.

When the smoke cleared and the tears stopped we had a conversation. We covered the outright disobedience pretty thoroughly. We talked about GND, and how she knew Twinkle was not supposed to have ice cream. Apparently she told Twinkle that the ice cream they'd both had earlier really wasn't very much.... Isn't that nice? We talked about the fact that GND likes to get Twinkle in trouble. Twinkle said, "GND made me get in trouble." Mr. S quickly corrected her. He said, "GND led you up to the door. She even knocked and ran away, but you walked through the door all by yourself."

When it comes right down to it, no matter what pressure you're under, no matter what actions others take, the decision is yours and yours alone whether you're going to do the right thing. It's your decision and your consequences or reward.

How many times will I repeat this to Twinkle? At least as many times as I repeat it to myself.


Heather said...

That is hard for many adults to realize too...blame everyone else for something that they did. It's a hard thing to teach, personal responsibility.

Mary Beth said...

Egads. The drill!

GND sounds like a little girl I used to play with. The one your mom hopes will move away...the one with all the great ideas.

Mr. S. is a smartie. You too.

Hang in there mama!

Princess of Everything (and then some) said...

*I don't want to enjoy it* and yet still trying to get it all in.

lol...sounds like all of us huh?

send me your email address so that I can hook you up with your partner!