Monday, August 3, 2009

Parenting Code

Like most parents, Robb and I often spell words we don't want the boys to decipher.

If we're thinking of going for a w-a-l-k, we don't want them to rush to put their shoes on before we have decided.

If we're thinking of c-o-o-k-i-e-s for dessert, we want to be sure we're in agreement before one or the other makes the announcement.

If we're thinking of giving b-a-t-h-s after dinner, we want to declare our agenda privately, to avoid any arguments or revolts before it's necessary.

"Do you want some I-C-E C-R-E-A-M?"

"Sure. But not until they are in B-E-D. I don't want to S-H-A-R-E."

As with many other areas in our marriage, we have learned to read one another well and we don't have to complete the thought in order for the other one to understand. So, we often spell in abbreviations.

Walk: W.

Cookies: C-O's.

Baths: B-A's

It has become a very cryptic language that makes perfect sense to us, but if you're listening in, you might find a few gaps.

For example, a friend joined us for lunch on Sunday. The boys were so tired, melting fast, and we were running out of options to tide them over before their naptimes. I said to Robb, "By the way, if you need them, there are some C-R-A-C-K in the backpack."

My friend sat up a little straighter and said, "I'm sorry, but did you say there is Crack in the backpack??"

Oh, no. That would be the abbreviation for Graham Crackers. But I can see how we might have misled you.

(And somedays, Crack seems like a better option.)

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