Making Dreams Come True

We’re celebrating summer birthdays in Piper’s class today. She’ll be 6 in July, so I volunteered to bring in the (non-dairy, peanut free) treat. Piper knew exactly what we needed.

“You should bring donuts, Mom. Krispy Kremes,” Piper specified.

Turns out Krispy Kreme donuts are in fact non-dairy and peanut free. Oh, and they have a drive-thru, which moms like me adore.

“Anything else?” I asked. I really shouldn’t have.

“A disco ball. Yep. We’ll need a disco ball.”

“Really? A disco ball? For what?”

“For making all my dreams come true. It’s my birthday, you know.”

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Pie Face

I made a berry pie for dessert tonight. It’s cooling on the countertop. The crust is flaky and brown. Blueberry and blackberry juices have seeped out a bit at the side. The house smells delicious.

It would be a Norman Rockwell moment really except that I have to yell “PIPER, GET AWAY FROM THE PIE!” every other second.

She sniffs it. She pokes the pie. She tries to slip a finger into the berry juices.

“If you don’t get away from the pie, I’ll…I’ll…stuff your face in it!” I yell. Not my best parenting move, I’ll give you that. It just came out.

“Well, Mom,” Piper said, “that’s kind of what I was hoping for.”

Sock Hop

“Mom, have you seen my sock?”

“What’s it look like, P?”

“It’s small and it fits on my foot.”

“Thanks. I meant what color is it? Where did you take it off?”

“Oh. I was dancing in the kitchen and some of my clothes flew off.”

“They flew off, Piper?”

“Sort of. I was dancing pretty hard. Wait. There it is. It’s up on the bird art on the wall. Silly sock.”

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Make Believe

Piper is known for her play. She has an incredible imagination. She can make a game out of anything, anywhere. Her best material, though, probably comes from life.

Right now she’s in the living room sorting through the leftover plastic junk that we often toss into the footstool, which is supposed to be a toy box. Our cleaning is sporadic and mostly of the quick-hide-as-much-as-you-can-there’s-someone-at-the-door variety. You can imagine the footstool bits. You may even remember that I once found Piper stuffing her dirty socks in there in her best hoarder move yet. (You can refresh your memory here)

Her game today involves a wooden doll, three Legos, a dishtowel, a stuffed chihuahua, and seventeen pieces of broken Happy Meal plastic parts.

“You guys want to play all day?” the wooden doll yells.

“We do!” the chorus of bits replies.

“But what about your chores?” prods the wooden doll, raising her voice. “How come I have to be the bad guy?”

The chorus has no good answer. If the wooden doll could move her wooden arms to her wooden hips, she would.

Piper’s voice is now shrieking. “Don’t you think I want to play too? ┬áBut no. I’m the bad guy. You know you have chores to do. Why do you always make me be the bad guy?”

The chorus throws themselves one by one back into their foot stool. Piper makes the wooden doll mumble loudly to herself about how she has to tell everyone around here everything to do when they really should be doing it themselves. Grumble. Grumble.

It doesn’t sound like make believe anymore.

Just the Right Size

I’m short. On a good day, I may reach 5’2”. When I’m in front of a classroom, I usually have on three inch heels. But you’d never know how short I am unless you stand next to me. I give off that assertive alpha vibe that says you probably shouldn’t stand next to me.

Sissy will probably be short, too. It’s hard to fight genetics. She comes from a long line of short, bossy Sicilian women. At least she’ll be able to cook. When Sissy was little, people would say thoughtless things like “Look at little you!” and “Oh, you’re so tiny! Are your bones hollow?” (I’ve found that we like to begin damaging body conscious comments in the U.S. to little girls at an early age). From the time she could talk, I taught Sissy to answer with “I’m just the right size” and we both meant it.

Piper put on a size 13 shoe this morning. She’s five. That’s not gargantuan by kid standards, but it’s an achievement in our house. Piper stands tall at Sissy’s shoulder, inching her way up. There are five years between them but a lot less in inches. It creates some tension, you can imagine.

Before school today, we were all at the door for the daily shoe, backpack, water bottle, homework scramble. Piper was flourishing a new pair of hand me down turquoise tennis shoes with just a few scuffs. Sissy was remembering that she wore them last year. Oops. Then Sissy checked the tag on the back of Piper’s hand me down shirt. “But I wore that LAST summer!” Sissy protested.

“Looks good on me!” Piper said. It wasn’t that helpful of a comment, you can imagine.

“Can’t you give her a reverse growth hormone or something?” Sissy asked.

“You’re both the right size for you. You’re wonderful just as you are,” I said. Blah, blah, blah is all they heard.

Sissy changed the subject. Sort of. “Did you know that there is a dwarf community in Ecuador that is immune to cancer? Scientists think that the same gene that creates the shortness may be the key to a long life.” We all stared at Sissy.

“Huh,” Piper said, “Is that what happened to Mom?”

Piper, CEO

“Mom, I’m going to need you to schedule a meeting.”

“A meeting? You mean like a playdate?”

Piper rolled her eyes. “No, I mean a meeting. With Madeline. We have club business to discuss.”

“Alright. I’ll schedule some time at the end of the week.”

“Yes. That will do. And we’ll need snacks.”

“Playdate…er…Meeting. Snacks. Got it.” I wrote my instructions down on my notepad like the dutiful administrative assistant I clearly am.

“Blueberry muffins. Seaweed. Cantaloupe. Lemonade. Did you write that down?”