Thursday, August 14, 2014

Secondary definitions

Last night when I got home from work the kids were all kinds of hyper, especially the little guy and the little girl. The bino just wanted some attention (read: to be picked up and carried around) but his older siblings much preferred to run around screaming non-stop. The sitter kind of smiled at me as she sidled right out the door, knowing it would be foolish to try to make herself heard over the ruckus, giving me a knowing look that conveyed the sentiment “Good luck with this, you poor doomed soul.”

But it really wasn’t bad at all. There is an enormous difference between the two bigger kids both being wound up and also being at each other’s throats, and the two of them being wound up on the same wavelength and playing together. Both can entail crashing through the house and shrieking their heads off, but the first involves one child chasing the other against their will, one shrieking in distress of fear or pain and the other shrieking in aggression. And that, obviously, is the kind of thing I don’t abide or allow and will intercede in without delay. The second type doesn’t bother me at all, no matter how tooth-rattlingly loud the kids get, for reals. If they are having fun, if all the shrieking is exuberantly good-natured, I am perfectly happy to let them have at it, especially if they are just running (not climbing up onto the backs of sofas, throwing things at the walls as hard as they can, &c.).

So I focused on the bino and on putting dinner together. Further enhancing the net positive was the fact that I was able to grill the chicken tenders outside (which doesn’t take very long) and still keep tabs on the bigger kids inside, because their constant voluble yelling allowed me to track their location with my ears alone. The bino hung out with his face smooshed into the screen door and watched me, so that was good, too. And by the time the kids were called to the dinner table, they had expended enough energy that they were able to sit still and eat, which is always a plus.

I was using the sound of their wild play for triangulation purposes but wasn’t really listening too closely to what my son and daughter were carrying on about. I did catch a little snippet of it, though:

Son: And you have little robot birds!
Daughter: Yeah!
S: That live in your tummy!
D: Yeah!
S: And then they SHOOT out of your belly button!
D: No! They just FLY out! And then they land in my hands!

I mean, that has got to be in the dictionary under “delightful” if the word has any meaning at all.

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