...are too hard for me to understand or follow. The minds of three and four year olds are at the same time beginning to understand the world around them and project their own ideas and fantasies onto that world. It's funny to watch them try to force their will onto reality when we're playing games. When playing Candy Land, Clara will pick through the cards until she finds one that moves her the furthest. When playing war with Nana, Clara waits until Nana puts her card down before flipping through her own deck to find a superior card. We're working on that.
It's amazing kids can separate make-believe from reality when we are constantly injecting make-believe into their realities. Santa Claus brings their presents. The Tooth Fairy rewards them for losing their teeth. And pirates are friendly, like this guy:
That's Redbeard, a pirate that the girls met while visiting their friends Nathan and Simon in Florida last week. Kate looks like she's growling at him or saying, "Aaaaarrrrr!" While on the beach with them, or in St. Pete with Nana and Papa, the girls were constantly slipping into make-believe, pretending to be, at various times, dinosaurs, princesses, dolphins, and eels, among other things. It's quite funny to watch this from a distance, especially when the girls decided to be the ugly stepsisters for some reason. But when they involve me in their make-believe, I am hopelessly inept at keeping up with their reasoning. They have no problem keeping up with each other, but I keep getting things wrong.
Kate's birthday was February 3rd, and one of her favorite presents was a toy coffee maker from Grandma. She loved pretending to make coffee and brought me her creations. I pretended that the empty cup she gave me was coffee and proceeded to drink it. Her response? "Daddy, that cup is empty." OK. "But I thought you brought me coffee?" "I drank it." "You drank it?" "Yeah," she said, as if it was totally obvious. Sometimes they announce that I am the king, but when I try to command them to do something, I see it's really just a ceremonial position. As I watch them make their way through their days, I'm starting to think "Dad" might be slipping slowing into a ceremonial position as well.
(When I collect the pictures from our Florida trip, I'll post them here. Thanks to Nikki Lemkemeier for the pirate picture above.)