Well, the guest room is complete. And later, I will post some pictures.

For now, let me share the joys of painting with a four year old . . . .

A few days ago, Herb asked if it was cool if he had a few friends over to join him in his man cave (IE: the basement on a sunny, beautiful Colorado afternoon) to watch the Wolverines play some football.

I said, "Sure".

We had a few "stop-by'ers", and one tried and true . . . our friend Russ came over with his two boys.
And stayed for five hours.

Nathan, or "Na-Na" as they call him, is two.
The NA in "Na-Na" is pronounced, nae.
Between the fact that he is two, and my theory that the entire second year of human development is just one big drunken acid trip, he is a very rambunctious boy.
Made of rubber.
Doesn't cry or whine.
Just throws himself across the room until he hits a hard surface.
His brother actually rolled over his head and he just laughed.
And is always ready to fight.
I think it is because he is twerked that they call him Na-Na.

Christopher is four.
The differences between two and four amaze me.
It is the difference between,
"I need a bobby (bottle)!!!!" and a consistent need to have your butt wiped by another human being


"Miss Cara, excuse me, but there is a bad guy behind you. I am just going to shoot him real quick."

After a few hours of watching the boys catapult themselves off of the couch and onto a pile of pillows and cushions, I decided to start working on the guest room.

Christopher could not have been more fascinated by this.

I pretty much felt like a celebrity.

"You're going to PAINT?!?!? NIIIIIICCCCEEE!"

Okay, first of all, I LOVE that these two little people say "dude", "nice", and "sweet". SO funny!

Second, you need to understand that Christopher has bright red hair, glasses, and yesterday - an eye patch!
I do not have words for the cuteness here.
And unfortunately, I am still learning to take decent pictures . . . plus, he kept posing with his gun, so I don't have any great photos to show you.

Christopher was convinced that helping me paint was the best way to spend the rest of the afternoon. I figured that the 20 minutes it would take me to set things up would be long enough to disinterest him and cause him to move on.

Not so.

He waited with baited breath, perched on the edge of the bed.
And sometimes standing over the unopened paint can, lunging, with the roller in hand.

Being that I might have some sort of inner-Montossori school teacher dwelling inside, I decided to let him help me. It is the same place inside that, several years ago, felt it was good idea to let the baby I nannied for feed himself . . . his mother finally asked me to stop, because, while it was "sweet to let him help", the squash and mashed pea stains were a little excessive.

Apparently convenience and cleanliness outweigh exploration and discovery.

But what do I know, I am not a mom.

Turns out, Christopher was actually quite good at painting.

And fun to paint with.

You can always count on a four year old to keep things real.
At one point, after switching places, Christopher said, "Thanks for trading, Miss Cara."
Well, you are so welcome Christopher.
Really, what a lovely thing to say.
Us grown-ups should try being sweet like that.

At one point, we heard the grown-up boys yelling at the game on TV. Christopher looked at me and said, "Miss Cara, don't you think my dad and Herb are CRAAAZZZY?!?!!?!?"

An hour later, they yelled again.

Chrisptopher, "Really, Cara, don't you think they are crazy?"


At one point, Christopher decided that it was a good idea to paint with the enormous rubber glove that he found in the painting box.

ME: "We are not going to paint with gloves on."
Christopher: "Yes. I can do it."
ME: "No, we are not going to paint with gloves on."
Christopher: "But I want to."

And then I had the gratification that parents who use "Parenting with Love and Logic" must feel all of the time! I can't believe this stuff works!
You give two choices.
Both of which you will be equally satisfied with if the child chooses.
Then they get to decide which one they will do.
In the end, they are happy because they think it is THEIR choice.


Too bad this doesn't work with bosses.
"You can either give me a year off, at double pay OR let me have an early retirement while continuing to pay me 75% of my salary."

So, I said, "You can wear the glove. That is fine. But you won't be painting. You can either wear the glove OR paint. It is your choice."

Christopher: "I am wearning the glove."

This lasted about three seconds, until he realized how boring glove-wearing alone can be.

Christopher: "No, I want to paint."

Glove off.
Reinstatement of free and effective child labor.


Eventually, after the first wall was painted, I realized that I no longer had the patience to have a four year old help. Not because he was not useful - we really should re-examine those child labor laws - but because with a four-year old comes a two-year old brother on an acid trip. Na-Na periodically decided to "help". This mostly comprised walking in the room, picking up something random and trying to dip it into paint.

SO, the guest room had to become a no-kids zone.

But later, when I was cleaning up in the laundry room, Christopher ran in, took one look at our space-age looking, front-load dryer as it spun a load of darks, and said, "NIIIICCCCEEE!!!! That's so cooool! I can SEE what the clothes are doing!"
And then, pointing to the washing machine (which was not running at the moment), "I wonder what THAT one does?"
"I wish I could be clothes, so I could spin around and around in there too!"

Christopher, I wish you could live at my house so I would have a constant flow of entertainment by a little person that actually says, "I wish I could be clothes . . . "


It makes you want to rent a four year old.

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Blogger Sherri Whiteford said...

I'm sure there are a lot of people that would love to rent you their 4 year old! Not me of course...

BTW - I can't wait to come stay in that "new" guest room.

5:26 PM, November 19, 2006  
Blogger Gary & Aly Rowe said...

RENT my kid? I don't even have him yet and I'd say that you can probably have him for FREE once in a while! As long as you don't call him "Ba-Ba"...

Loved the room yesterday - sensational colors and decor!

12:18 PM, November 20, 2006  
Blogger denverherbie said...

Cleary, however, 4 year olds have a lot to learn... Russ and I were not "CRAZY" in the other room. We were just cheering on my favorite sports team with phrases like, "GO my favorite sports team , GO!" "Score another goal unit!"

10:25 AM, November 22, 2006  

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