Saturday, May 2, 2009

Five Year Spread.

The five year age gap between my girls is beginning to be a problem.
Not for the kids - they are fabulous together.
We haven't had a lot of jealousy issues and the six year old delights in playing with and teaching her baby sister. Long may it continue. For those more seasoned parents out there - please leave me in my river in Egypt.

The problem is with me. I find it hard to switch between instructions for a six and one year old. Discipline is even trickier.
I find myself giving the baby exasperated looks when my "No thank you - we don't throw" is met with an overhand lob worthy of a baseball pitcher. Why isn't she getting it? I never have to tell her sister twice...
Counting to three - another classic that stops the six year old in her tracks has no impact on the baby whatsoever. It's perplexing. I count slowly and use my fingers to show how many three is - still she crawls away gleefully to do the thing I just expressly forbade her too.

If I tell the six year old we're not playing upstairs right now, she stays down. The baby bolts for the stairs. She even taunts me with the turn back to see if I'm looking as she goes. I know I'm a good multi-tasker both by genetic design and practice but I don't seem to be able to get this.
I find myself asking the baby a question and actually waiting for an answer. The six year old is frustrated because I keep walking up to her and putting on her jacket or socks, when she hasn't needed help for approximately four years.

The six year old actually asked me to start my sentences with the name of the kid I'm addressing - she's tired of freezing spoon half way to mouth when I yelp "STOP" as the baby tries to ingest something inappropriate.

I'm not optimistic it's going to resolve anytime soon. I think the baby is likely to continue to get wildly ambitious instructions and the six year old will just keep rolling her eyes as I do something entirely unnecessary for her.
It should make for interesting teenage years.

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