Have you ever taken a four, almost five, year old boy shopping in the formal dress department? Have you ever tried to keep said boy entertained while his teen sister tried on every dress in the store? At first, he enjoys himself hiding in the skirts of long formals, doing his best to scaring the grey hairs onto you with visions of the store calling a Code Adam. Then, he begins hanging on the racks of the shorter dresses, tipping them precariously. On to the fitting room. Such times call for desperate measures.
Wm. and I had already used one unoccupied hallway of the large fitting room (which was empty except for us, I might add) to learn to skip and to let Wm. practice his somersaults. My next suggestion to roll back and forth a small toy race car was met with the suggestion that instead, we should see who could throw it the farthest. And as boys do, he was talking loudly.
"Mommmmm, tell him to be quiet," whined both sisters.
So, we investigated the large three way mirror. We counted how many Williams we could see. We noted that Mommy could wave to herself. Okay. That lasted, what, two minutes? Wm. began to search for ways to misbehave so that we could go home. I showed him how you could lay on the floor and look upside down and make faces in the mirror.
"Mommmmm, get up, you're embarassing me," Anna intoned with rolled eyes.
Again, I note, NO ONE WAS IN THE ROOM!
"What's she doin'?" Lauren asked.
"She's being a MOM," Anna replied, as if that explained everything in a nutshell.
I laughed. It seems that at this age, my main occupation is the embarassment of my teenage daughters. I consider it my job. I tell them that if I'm not embarassing them, we're not having enough fun.
Given that I speak and act frankly, this isn't do difficult. Lauren has requested that I not check horses' privates when anyone is around, even though we are in a barn and teaching others what taking care of an animal entails and with other horsey people that know all about it anyway. Yet, it doesn't embarass her ONE BIT to bring to me her old, poop encrusted favorite chicken who seems to be under the weather. Could I maybe wash this chicken butt for her? Huh, maybe it's a little too embarassing. Could there be a more humbling task? (Note: chicken is just fine this morning)
My children, you must learn to laugh at yourself! Sometimes, it's the only way to get through a day! So, I am teaching them to laugh at themselves. Not too long ago, we were amused by finding what we call the Chin songs. If you want some examples, go on YouTube and search by "chin". Or, you can see my first, unfinished attempt here:
As you can see, I haven't yet added hair and a hat, but we had fun. So the girls used the time they should be studying biology, to make the following video of their own:
Most likely, they'll never remember that the stacks of thylakoids in the chloroplast are called grana, and that the second stage of photosynthesis is called the Calvin Cycle. But they will remember the night we made chin videos and laughed.
P.S. I challenge you to make your own chin videos!
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