On Friday when I arrived home from studying, I entered the house letting the garage door slam behind me. I was expecting to hear the patter of feet come blustering down the hallway and the gaggle of "MOMMY'S HOME!" that usually accompany the feet. But no. No such noise.
I crept around the hallway corner to discover Casey, perched up on the arm of the sofa, completely engaged in the movie Hercules and Marcie sitting at their small table, with her back to the TV. In Marcie's arms was a bag of bread. My bread. And spread across the table were somewhere between seven and eleven slices of it. Including the heel. She had taken a bite out of each one. And not on the edge of the bread so that I might still be able to use the pieces to make myself sandwiches. Oh no. Bites out of the center. Almost like she folded it in half, took a small bite, and opened it back up to look at her work. She was digging around in the bag for another piece when I caught her eye. "Hi, Mommy!" she called out happily.
So I learned my lesson. Don't leave my bread on the kitchen table where she can reach it. And destroy it. I don't think Marcie is particular about bread-- and I don't think my bread is particularly tasty, either. I eat that Wonder Lite stuff. But the kids and Jason eat Miltons or Orowheat. So I imagine my bread (much lower in calories) must have tasted like cardboard to poor Marcie, though really she didn't seem to mind.
Then yesterday morning, I decided to go back to bed and sleep in for a while. I shoved Jason out from under the covers with a "gentle" nudge and asked if he would lay on the couch so I could get some rest. And I rolled back out of bed at around 8am when I heard Casey calling out loudly, "MARCIE, WHERE ARE YOU?" From a dead sleep, I bolted wide awake. There aren't really many hiding places for a toddler inside the house, and in the pit of my stomach I worried Marcie had wandered off. Though in retrospect, I don't know how she would have escaped-- she doesn't know how to open the slider, and the front door has a hotel latch that's hard for me to reach. Nonetheless, I raced from our bedroom to the family room.
Jason, too, groggily sat up on the couch. But he took one glance around the room and said, "Casey, she's right here." Sure enough, there was Marcie. Sitting happily at the kitchen table, hidden by the height of the table itself because she'd opted for a chair without a booster seat.
She giggled a little as I approached-- and there in her hands were a knife (gasp!) and a hamburger bun. She was attempted to cut herself pieces of the bun and she'd clearly done a pretty good job up to that point. As if I were talking down a criminal, I said, "Marcie, give Mommy the knife please. Gently." And she did.
And she held up the top of the hamburger bun and called out, "Bread, Mommy."
"Yes, I see, Marcie." I replied.
And that is the end of knives in our silverware drawer. I don't know how she reached into the drawer and got it out, but that won't be happening again.
Whenever I feel slightly exasperated by her ability to problem-solve, I can't help but also feel so proud. She's a girl after my own heart-- I was quite the trouble maker when I was a toddler, or so my mom tells me. Once I climbed up into the bathroom medicine cabinet, took out my mom's nail polish, unscrewed it, and tried to use it as eye liner. During another escape, I located my dad's deodorant-- the roll-on kind-- and licked the entire bottle. At least Marcie's actions aren't quite as gross. Well, not yet anyway.