Friday, January 29, 2016

First Allowance

Harper got her first allowance today. After marveling at the two stacks of shiny quarters, her sole purpose in life became spending all of them immediately. So after lunch we walked down to the corner drug store so that Harper's wildest fantasies could become a reality.

After much debate, she settled on one imported plastic, glowing kitten night light-like thing. It changes colors. Oh, and it's covered in hearts, so she had to have it. Obviously. 

On the way to the register, Will spied the diecast metal cars (I should have had the foresight to take the next aisle over, and I have regretted my decision ever since.) and refused to proceed until he had thoroughly perused them. As I had just cleared out the toy bins of several gruesomely disemboweled vehicles (thanks to our future engineer), and Harper was purchasing something for herself, I decided to let him pick one out. He sweetened to a cherry red ambulance which we purchased in haste.

Not two and a half minutes after leaving the store Will LOST it. "School bus, mama! Not ambulance! Go back! Go back!" he wailed for the next ten minutes. He clearly had pre-nap buyer's remorse and my patience was wearing thin.

I reasoned: two year olds cannot possibly comprehend the weight of their decisions. If he were to calm down I might consider exchanging the offending ambulance for the school bus that he now pined for, and then my burgeoning headache might subside. So I asked him, "Will, would you like the school bus and not the ambulance?"

He brightened immediately. "Yes, mama."

"If you are calm and sit in the stroller, we will go back to the store and buy the school bus, but there will be no more ambulance."

"Yes, mama! Yes! School bus! New school bus!" He chanted cheerily, and handed me the ambulance. I kissed his sticky, tear-stained cheek and we headed back to the store.

It turns out that, shockingly, two year olds are fickle. He found the beautiful school bus for which he was longing not quite so spectacular upon our return. Finally, after an inordinately long decision making process, he chose a police jeep with a shiny light bar and articulated doors. We thanked the cashier for being so accommodating and exited the store.

Then, not thirty seconds after leaving, Will began bawling.

"Go back, mama! Fire engine! Not police jeep!"

And that, my friends, is why you don't negotiate with a terrorist.        


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