Aaaaaand...The Deception Begins

Saturday night, Thalia was in a mood that we fondly refer to as Two. As in, "Oh Thalia. Are you acting Two again?"

Nate offered her a grape and was met with an inordinately loud and screechy NOOOOO! I DON'T LIKE GRAPES! And so he took the grapes into the kitchen, shuffled them around on the plate, then brought them right back. And offered them again.

As jellybeans.

She ate them all.

The semi-smart, mostly sensible mom within me was cringing. We don't tend to lie to Thalia. We don't tell her that the playground is closed or that the ice cream store ran out of ice cream. (Although really, that did happen once. Ask Tony.) I do think that keeping things on the straight and narrow is a better long-term tactic even if I have to endure a few tantrums along the way.

So I corrected Thalia, "Daddy was just playing a joke on you, sweetie. He was being funny. It's really a grape." Too late. Thalia insisted that no it was not a grape, it was a jellybean. She even proceeded to separate the grapes from the jellybeans on the plate using some sort of incomprehensible assessment system, and show us exactly which was which.

So then I did what any semi-smart, mostly sensible mom would do.

I told Nate to get out the video camera.

What can I say, the whole thing was hilarious, what with her yelling MMMM JUICY JELLYBEANS! SO SWEEEET! for an hour all while popping grapes.

Cut to today, lunch time.

Thalia and I were bargaining chips for food, as in finish that half of your sandwich and you can have one more chip.

(The chips, by the way, were in part a passive-aggressive reaction to some sanctimommy on a message board last night who led with, "My whole family knows that the first person to offer soda, chips or candy to my three year-old is DEAD to me." Like having a one-night stand with an ex, every so often I go back to that board remind myself why left in the first place.)

Thalia was respecting the trade-off pretty well, until she walked back to her sandwich, lifted it near her mouth, then turned her back to me and pantomimed taking a bite. "I did it!" she declared, before making an enthusiastic bee-line for the foil bag.

The deception! The chicanery! The outright lie!

I have no idea where she got it from.


Blogger SUEB0B said...

That is one amazing kid you have there. NO idea where she gets that.

I'm afraid Sanctimommies will always be with us - like cockroaches they will survive even a nuclear blast.

11/18/07, 5:03 PM  
Blogger Motherhood Uncensored said...

How can we trust you?

I mean maybe you're MOM 102 and we'll never freaking know.


11/18/07, 5:17 PM  
Blogger Julie Pippert said...

I think the mild deception aka Creative Parenting Explanations work great until hmm 5 at the latest. Then they are SO LITERAL, and so easily "betrayed feeling."

Like, "Mom you PROMISED to wash my MAGENTA socks, and you didn't!"

"These socks are magenta here, how about these?"

"Those aren't magenta, they are DARK PINK WAAAHHHH life as we know it is OVER!"

Creative rules!

So BRAVO to Nate and seriously...I can't imagine anyone having the energy to parent as zealously as the sanctimommy.

Using My Words

11/18/07, 5:32 PM  
Blogger NG said...

It is wrong to lie to your children... so wrong. I'm totally stealing the jellybeans for grapes idea. It would be more wrong not to put such a genius idea to use.

11/18/07, 6:56 PM  
Blogger slouching mom said...

Kristen: Mom 102!


11/18/07, 7:01 PM  
Blogger Leanne said...


I've NEVER heard the term Santimommy before. It is so so so perfect!

11/18/07, 7:11 PM  
Blogger PunditMom said...

Crap! I wish I would have thought of that jelly bean thing about FIVE YEARS AGO!!

11/18/07, 7:11 PM  
Blogger Lady M said...

We totally could have used the jellybean line today. The little dude ate 10 grapes and then decided they were "yucky" and has refused to eat any more.

11/18/07, 9:06 PM  
Blogger Magpie said...

LOL about that message board. I have a suspicion as to what it might be.

I have a hard time pulling the wool over my kid's eyes...she just doesn't buy it.

11/18/07, 9:36 PM  
Blogger stephanie said...

Darn, the sanctimommy was pulled, FILE NOT FOUND. I wanted to see who has the time & energy (and lack of tact) to be so...yeah. I'd want to be the first person to offer her three-year-old all of those things in a five minute span, just because of that remark. Puh-leez.

You're brilliant.

11/18/07, 10:18 PM  
Blogger mothergoosemouse said...

Ah, the entertaining irrationality that is Two.

Grapes, jellybeans...they both sound good to me.mt

11/18/07, 10:28 PM  
Blogger Fairly Odd Mother said...

Nate would go over big in this house. Oh wait, he has. I'm trying the jellybean trick tomorrow.

11/18/07, 11:06 PM  
Blogger Phoenix said...

I'm laughing at Kristen right now.

Funny, we say the same thing about my niece, except she's three. And dam it, she's good at it.

11/19/07, 2:10 AM  
Blogger Shannon said...

Hhhmmm, jellybeans. I like it.

11/19/07, 2:55 AM  
Anonymous Emily R said...

Maybe THAT would work with our son, who seems to be of the opinion that any fruit larger or smaller than an apple is not edible. Have to think about it...

Although, I must say, I am pretty much with you on the whole honesty thing.

11/19/07, 8:10 AM  
Blogger Christina said...

I think I could probably guess which message board you were talking about. I go back every now and then, too, just to see what I "should" be getting upset about, LOL.

Grapes as jellybeans? Haven't tried that one. But I do try to convince Cordy that her vitamin is candy (she's too smart for that one) and that we really don't have any ice cream in the house. (She can't open the freezer yet, thank goodness.)

11/19/07, 8:28 AM  
Blogger Jaelithe said...

Unfortunately, my son is way too sophisticated a picky eater to fall for a trick like that.

This is not to say I haven't tried.

Also, why are people so against chips? Really? Have any of these chip-haters ever read and compared the nutrition facts on various varieties and brands of chips? Yes, some chips really are bad for you, but others are not. Whole wheat pita chips are not bad for you. Baked potato chips are not bad for you. Organic unsalted blue corn chips fried are not bad for you. Sliced dried carrot chips or banana chips are not bad for you. Chips can be a really good source of fiber, heart-healthy monounsaturated fat, and in some cases even vitamins and minerals for kids who are picky eaters.

AND they make an excellent bribe to exchange for bites of chicken. It's a win-win situation, really.

11/19/07, 10:25 AM  
Blogger Jaelithe said...

Yeah, so, ignore the random "fried" in there-- I meant to say fried in canola oil. Clearly my parents damaged my brain by allowing me to drink too much soda.

11/19/07, 10:29 AM  
Blogger Marketing Mommy said...

There's a limit to the deception we can get away with now that Z is 3. Last night my husband said "We don't have mac and cheese tonight."

"Yes we do!" exclaimed our daughter, "Here, let me show you where we keep it!"

11/19/07, 11:08 AM  
Blogger The Hotfessional said...

Does it work with 16-year-olds? Although he's not much of a jelly-bean eater either.

I know! Skittles! I'll tell him they're Skittles.

11/19/07, 11:47 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

It is not lying...it is creative explaination and I think you are doing a great job. It is not bribes, it is negotiating...and in the big bad adult world our kids will need to be creative and be able to negotiate - both skills we as moms can say we helped to develop!

Kudos to Nate!

11/19/07, 1:20 PM  
Anonymous Jill said...

I have a 3yo who lives in Pretend World. If he won't eat his carrots, I suggest that Baby Bunny eat them. If he won't go up to his nap, I suggest that Baby Bear come with me to hibernate. If he didn't want grapes but wanted to call them puppy treats, so be it. I've found that I can get my kid to do almost anything I (don't) ask him to do as long as I'm creative with my pretend!

11/19/07, 2:13 PM  
Blogger sweetney said...

oh that was awesome.

too bad mine's too old to go for that. sniff.

11/19/07, 2:14 PM  
Blogger Lawyer Mama said...

It's good to know I'm not the only one who does deals with the devil like this!

11/19/07, 2:54 PM  
Blogger BOSSY said...

Ah yes, the ol' sandwich mime.

11/19/07, 3:31 PM  
Blogger WkSocMom said...

I just hope those were organic free-range chips. I really try to limit my lying and bribery to absolutely no more than 3,5 at the most 10 times a day.

11/20/07, 1:36 PM  
Blogger carrie said...

Whatever works!

11/20/07, 1:47 PM  
Blogger Scylla said...

I love it when stuff like that works. One time my husband got my daughter to clean her room by enthusiastically promising to teach her how to do laundry, All By Herself.
He is still my hero for that one.

11/20/07, 11:03 PM  
Anonymous Sarcastic Mom (aka Lotus) said...

Ahhh, you went for the camera.

This is a reason to love you.

11/21/07, 1:55 PM  
Blogger b*babbler said...

I really have no idea how they learn some of this stuff.

This past couple of weeks Peanut has learned how to fling herself to the floor when denied something. Where does she get it? I'm pretty sure she's never seen another kid do it, and I'm pretty sure it isn't us. I'm beginning to think that kids are just hardwired.

11/21/07, 10:48 PM  
Anonymous Bitsy Parker said...

The fact that you are feeding your children is good enough for me.

11/22/07, 8:23 PM  

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