We spent a couple of hours at my sister's house today. My kids like playing with their older cousins, or at least playing nearby while the two cousins play Guitar Hero.
I just wanted a few minutes of peace and quiet. And to drink a whole cup of coffee without having to reheat it. I brought down the last of my Bittersweet Chocolate and Poached Pear Tart as payment for both.
My sister said Alex and Julia could get some markers and color the big empty cardboard box in the living room. Both kids thought that was a great plan, so Mere showed them where the markers were and soon they were busily creative.
At one point Julia came into the kitchen wearing Calvin's hat. She looked cute.
And while Alex played with my sister's practice nun-chucks, Julia held aloft my sister's bamboo practice bo. I imagine in her mind she had just defeated a few classmates. Or her brother.
Eventually they both went back to coloring the box, and with the exception of the Guitar Hero noise, the living room was fairly quiet and Meredith and I actually got to hang out and chat a bit.
At one point Mere left to go upstairs, and as she passed the living room, she did a double-take and said "Um...Jayne...come see what your kids are doing."
That's never a good thing.
She wouldn't have said that if they were, oh, dusting the bookshelves or sweeping the floor.
So it was with some trepidation that I approached the living room.
Both kids were in the box.
They were laughing hysterically.
And here's what I saw.
Can you see it? Did you look at their faces?
They weren't just coloring the cardboard.
In fact, when my sister had walked by, the kids were facing each other, markers in hand, each gently drawing on the other's face.
I should have switched to color for these shots, but I was too busy telling them to STOP IT! MARKERS ARE FOR COLORING ON PAPER! OR CARDBOARD! NOT EACH OTHER!
These lines on his face were blue...and there were also blue marks on Julia's face. And red and blue on their ankles and bare feet. And Julia's hands.
They really didn't care what I thought at all.
But just to placate me - or shut me up - they resumed drawing on their cardboard canvases.
At least while they thought I was watching.