I love how my kids think they know better than I do. I expect this when they're teenagers, but no one ever told me that toddlers and preschoolers were just teenagers with less muscle.
We went to the playground today, which was a bit of a fight anyway. This is a newly developed area, so we don't have shade, and the sun up here in the mountains is like laser beams. The slides are always on fire, and someone always she feels the need to test my assertion that she'll burn her tender thigh skin if she goes down that slide, don't go down that slide, okay, then I will let you see for yourself. Again. Don't even expect me to comfort you.
Where was I?
Yes. Playground. The other great thing about this playground is that it's built in a depression in a low field that is next to a marsh (a marsh in Utah? why yes, it is possible, and even though it's the one thing we were most looking forward to about moving away from Jefferson, WI, we still managed to move right next to one without knowing about it until it was too late). So if it even thinks about raining, or if the sprinklers on the field are pointed the wrong way, we have playground soup.
It rained for five seconds this morning. So we got there today ("Check the slides first! No, check them! With your HAND!"), and half the playground was covered in water. Grace went running ahead as always and started picking up handfuls of dry wood chips to try to cover it over. This works sometimes, when there's a tiny puddle at the bottom of a slide. But this was more like 20 puddles merged into one huge one under the entire play structure. We probably could have gone fishing if we'd wanted.
"You won't get very far throwing wood chips in the water, Grace." She just turned to look at me like, "Oh? Watch me."
Emmy trotted up to help, and together they threw enough dry wood chips into the water to do absolutely nothing. Grace gave up a few minutes later and came over to play by me at the pavilion. Emmy soldiered on dutifully, trucking great handfuls of wood chips to the puddle.
"Don't go in the water!" I yelled. I know that my children hate nothing more than wet clothes and wet shoes, but they always forget this. It's amazing that I remember these things better than they do, even though I'm the one who loses her keys daily.
And what do you know? Fifteen seconds later, Emmy erupted in shrieks and protestations about her wet shoes and butt. She trudged over, emitting that horrible noise toddlers make when they're miserable but not actually in pain, something between a groan and a whine and a scream, like a cow in labor, or at least what I imagine a cow in labor sounds like. The whole way over, she glared at me like it was somehow my fault. She continued glaring at me as she plopped down on the ground in front of me, mumbling, "Take off da shoes. Got to take off da shoes."
Then I warned them about hitting their heads while crawling under the picnic tables. This is also a warning that must be tested. I never actually forbid them from doing these things. I'm still under the delusion that one day they will learn from experience. But I'm pretty sure Emmy is too brain-damaged from learning to crawl too young, and Grace's I'll-prove-you-wrong reflex gets stronger every day, so I really don't know what I'm thinking.
Not five seconds later, Emmy conked her head on the bottom of the picnic table, and just gave up. She rolled up onto the bench next to her and lay down, sobbing. I came over to comfort her, but it was hard not to laugh in her face. She shot some more accusatory glares at me, but let me pick her up and carry her around for a minute.
We went home after that, and now they are sleeping about as soundly as they ever do, so I guess all that physical and emotional trauma is good for wearing them out.