I should have known I was in for an interesting evening when brother and sister hunched around the trash can to peel their clementines together. While humming Stars and Stripes Forever at the top of their respective lungs. Another clue I was currently residing in an alternate universe centered on how Her Majesty has been singing a variety of songs to the tune of the Peaches and Herb classic: Shake Your Groove Thing. We started with “It’s April Fool’s Day, April Fool’s Day…yeah,yeah” and progressed to “I am awesome, I am awesome..yeah, yeah” to “Take my shoes off, take my shoes off…yeah,yeah.” It is possible I have exposed my children to entirely too much disco. I blame Pandora.
Anyhoo, the littlest one took her turn at Just Dance and went to the bathroom willingly only to request a “manzana” immediately after her bath. How better to stall a former Spanish teacher than to demonstrate you’ve learned a new word in Spanish? I, of course, caved and let her have an apple. The Hobbit fixed his own cereal then went to the bathroom with considerably more prodding. He, of course, had to see a man about a horse. Why equine negotiations can’t take place at another time of day, I don’t know. I suppose I could scout out the stables to see if the deal was legit, but I really didn’t want to. By the time he emerged, I was trying to dry Her Majesty’s hair. At this point, he had to poke his little sister until she giggled causing her to move around and making it very hard to dry her hair. Even better, the two of them started singing her rendition of You are My Sunshine. You know, the one that includes the verse “you smack me happy when skies are gray.” Much playful smacking ensued.
I threatened him to within an inch of his life and he jumped in the shower, but I still had to brush Her Majesty’s teeth. While I wrestled with the toothpaste cap, she flung back the shower curtain to hear her brother squeal like a girl. At some point anti-Justin Bieber sentiment was also expressed. Why that came up in the bathroom, I’ll never know.
Now, here’s the kicker: before she went to bed, Her Majesty WILLINGLY started picking up toys without being asked. Again, it’s really late and she needs to be in bed, but what am I supposed to say? Quit cleaning your room? I think not. I have prayed for this day. I had not, however, prayed she would be singing Rick Astley as she cleaned. (If you haven’t seen Beaker as Rick Astley, you really must) Just as I get her settled into bed, the Hobbit emerges wearing nothing but a towel and shouting “To-ga party! To-ga! To-ga! To-ga!” I have to chase him from the room amidst Her Majesty’s giggles. In retrospect, I probably should have at least paused to complement him on his creative over-the-shoulder fastening of said toga/towel, but I guess I’m just not a good mother.
By that point, I knew I needed to write all of this down so I came in and started to type. I realized it was quiet. Too quiet. I went to turn off The Hobbit’s light, and he asks oh-so politely, “Can I please finish the last chapter?” Foiled again! Not only am I sucker for reading, but he’s reading a classic—The Time Machine—and he knows I know he needs to take more AR tests at school. So here I am typing while he is finishing his chapter. Here I go to hopefully put the last Dawdlekid to bed….
And, miraculously, he has finished the book and is ready for bed. It’s 9:08, at least 30 minutes later than when the two of them should be in bed. If anyone had told me having children would be, at times, akin to living in an episode of The Muppet Show, I would have laughed in her face. But I would have been wrong.
And if you think this is some kind of elaborate April Fool’s joke, you, too, are wrong. I’m a writer, and I can’t make this sh*t up.