Yesterday I burned a pan of sugar and water that was meant for cranberry sauce. The whole house filled with billowing smoke. After an hour of the doors and windows open and a lot of "never again will I leave a pan on the stove and go to do something else for just a minute" I put a new pan up, boiled the water, poured in the cranberries, went off to do something else for just a minute and burned the second pan black as toast.
Eliz. and Sophie came over.. we played Saboteur (fun) and Bitin' Off Heads (cool and funny but not a fun game really, far too random). I worked up their enthusiasm for pastry-making... Rook went out in the rain to buy flour, which I'd forgotten. So I made bad pie dough with 3 pairs of hands in it - in the rain - it didn't really matter - then we made tiny rugullah-ish pastries with jam, sprinkles, sugar, more jam, and my apple-rum-raisin-ginger-cardamom filling with fig paste (worthy of making again sometime for real, more neatly).
Sophie was being sophisticated, saying "Who cares" sharply to anything Moomin ventured to talk about. "I got a green balloon..." "Who cares. Balloons are for babies. Balloons are stupid." "Well, I got it at X... and I like it... and they give them to you there and they're NOT for babies..." "Who CARES." To her credit and with her status as older kid with newfound empathy and morals, Eliz. began to admire and play with the balloon. "Who Cares. You're dumb." I left Sophie and Moomin alone together for like 2 minutes and suddenly there was a howl and a scream of "You're BAD, BAD, BAD! BAD! BAD!!!!!!!" "Who CARES". She had cut off his balloon string. "I can tie it. But you are being mean and you are trying to make me cry!" (Perceptive...) "Who Cares." "We care..." (said everyone) "You're mean, and bad, and I'm never, ever, ever, going to be your friend." Oh man. Me: "Um... guys... you don't have to be close friends, but since your moms are friends you are stuck with each other for a while, so best to try to get along. Sophie you cannot make pastry with us and we can't play with you until you apologize...so you can go in the other room and read if you don't care. Also, wash your hands." "Who ca... umm.... hmmmm." "Moomin, your balloon is fixed. Calm down. Stop saying that Sophie is Bad. Sometimes kids tease each other." I wish him a slightly thicker skin - and that Sophie might inoculate him slightly to teasing. At least no one popped the damn balloon.
Ostracism worked, apology given and accepted; within 5 minutes we were all mangling the pie dough with sticky hands. G. and gargrrl came over in the middle of this...
Oh and at some point Moomin went, "Besides, Sophie... Jesus says you should be kind and love other people." WHAAAAAT? I freaked out! What what what? I mean, okay, sure, but... attempted elaborate casualness not fooling anyone as I froze and hissed "oh how INteresting - who told you that?" It turns out that fundamentalist xtians have NOT hijacked my child's mind but instead Rook had given a stab at explaining what xmas was about. Whew. (But wait, wait, I'm not ready to deal with this level of discussion....)
The rest of the evening we watched Abbott&Costello and played liar's dice. There was no more serious who-caresing or strife. Sophie received a squirting flower and tricked us all. She was a good sport at the games. Eliz. got a set of dice.
Sophie needs some constructive naughtiness. I don't know what that would be! Destruction and mayhem! I am reminded of how she loved to take apart appliances when she was 2 or 3. She wants to have a Loud Effect! She will make a great punk guitarist, or some sort of future equivalent. Loud! Destroy creatively! Attention everyone! There is an obnoxious statement, one that is sure to stop you in your tracks! Impact! Meteor Sophie! As we watch her exercise this ability I think it is important to keep it in mind that it's both her flaw and her virtue. Her sister, on the other hand, enjoys more structured, complex trouble. If offered a choice of insane art projects, Sophie would go for something like, "What if we dropped a truck full of paint onto the city and then everything caught on fire?" while her sister would be more like, "We could invent an intricate robotic factory that based on molecular decay would paint a picture of complex chaos."
Anyway, the pastries came out great! Maybe a slight burning of the overflowing sugar, but delicious!