Saturday, March 26, 2011

Shirts vs. Skins

Little Dog tends to use his clothes as a napkin.  If his hands get dirty, his shirt will feel the brunt of it even if a serviette is handy.  That's just how he works despite our best coaching on the topic.  What this means on a practical basis is that a) Little Dog frequently has dirty clothes and b) if we've eaten and I want to take him out of the house, there is a very good chance I will need to change his clothes.

Today we went to breakfast at one of our usual breakfast spots.  Little Dog had blueberry pancakes with syrup, potatoes with catsup and half an English muffin with butter.  As he ate his hands were frequently cleaned on his shirt.  At the end of the meal it looked like he'd wiped his plate with his clothing.  Fine.  No problem.  We were headed back home and I have an ample supply of clean shirts for this messy little man.

After relaxing a bit, it was time to leave the house to see a puppet show.  This required a costume change for Little Dog.  I brought him a clean shirt and asked him to change.  He refused. 
"No thank you," he said, ever so politely.
"Either you change your shirt and go to the puppet show or we stay home in your dirty shirt," I said, laying out the options.  Though technically I'd already paid for the tickets so he was going to be strong armed into changing that shirt, I still like to pretend there are choices he can make.
"I will go in my dirty shirt," he said.
"No, no you won't."  And it continued like this for a bit until I gave him a faux ultimatum.  "Change your shirt now, or we're going to stay home.  Last chance."
And it appeared to work.  Little Dog took the clean shirt, and walked away.
"I've done it," he said a few minutes later.  "I have a new shirt on.  This one looks just like my tummy."
And when he reappeared he was shirtless.
"Well, that's an interesting shirt," I said, "But you need to put on a shirt that looks less like your birthday suit."
He smiled and walked away again.  He's really into the idea of a "birthday suit"- we've discussed it endlessly lately, so I thought this was the source of his mirth. 
"I've put on a new shirt!" he exclaimed a few minutes later.  And I should have known better than to expect he'd simply slipped on the new shirt.  When he came back into my line of sight, he was wearing this-
 and a cheeky grin.  He really is hard to parent with a straight face.

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