Harper in action.


Monday, October 8, 2007


This has become one of Harper's favorite words. It is also an example of the only real drawback of daycare. Peer influence. Before daycare, Harper lived in a controlled environment. If I threw a napkin in the garbage from four feet away (or ten feet if I'm shooting a three pointer), and then I see Harper throw a toy similarly, I know why that's happening. Now she can pick up bad habits and I don't know from whom she's getting it. I just know it happened at daycare.

We've started to talk about daycare like it's this vortex we deliver our daughter to each morning and from which we retrieve her each afternoon. What happens at daycare stays at daycare. If Harper comes home in different shoes than she had on in the morning, there's no sense trying to understand. It happened at daycare (thunder crashes).

"Hey, Harper lost an earring, do you know where it is?"
"No idea. It happened at daycare." THUNDER!

"She wasn't wearing this t-shirt when I dropped her off."
"Forget it, McCall, it's daycare." THUNDER!

"Don't we have a girl?" THUNDER

So when Harper recently picked up the "mine" bug, it was senseless to try and identify a culprit. First off, what am I going to do? Confront the poor kid's parents?

"Hey, your kid's been teaching my kid stuff. Tell him to knock it off, Harper knows enough already!"

Besides, I'm horrified to think what Harper might be teaching the other kids. I cringe at the reverse confrontation.

"Um, your little girl showed my little girl how to climb up on top of, well, everything. The funeral will be this Thursday."

But honestly, the whole "mine" thing is a bit annoying, isn't it? Try to take anything away from Harper and she recoils guarding the item covetously while blaring, "Mine, mine, mine, mine..." I think the only reason she doesn't say anything else is because she can't say "precious" yet.


Plus, she says it about everything. If she grabs my cell phone off the table, and I try to get it back from her...mine, mine, mine, mine. There goes mommy's shoe. Can I have that Harper? Mine, mine, mine, mine. It's not yours. It's actually mine. In fact, nothing is really yours, it's all ours. We just let you use it.

But I have to feel a level of sympathy for her. I get the feeling that she's coming to the realization that she doesn't really own anything and all the big people in her life do. Plus, if it's not adults, it's the other kids snatching things away from her all day. I think she's just desperate for a sense of ownership.

That's why I've started collecting a glass menagerie for Harper that she can play with anytime she wants. They'll be all hers. Because what better gift is there for a 16 month old than glass?

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