As I have said before, Lizzie pays attention. She listens to what people say. She evaluates their delivery. I watch her watch people when they laugh, and I have to imagine she is taking in that something made it happen. She figures it out and repeats it.
Last Monday, Lizzie got a belated birthday gift, and in it, she received a gift card to Target. Immediately, she asked Tom and me, “When can we go to Target?” Well, we couldn’t go that day, we had just returned from our mini-vacation. We had to catch up and get ready for the week. She wanted instant gratification, and we were not giving it to her. Disappointed, she was willing to be patient.
Tuesday, I walked in from school, and before I even took off my coat, she asked, “Mom, when can we go to Target?”
“I don’t know, Honey. I have to make dinner, fold some laundry, and blog. We’ll ask Daddy when he gets home.”
She thought about it. She knew Tom got home from work around six. The first thing he would ask her is if she had completed her homework. She knew that Tom would not take her shopping if she had not. She looked at the clock above the stove. It was 4:30. She grabbed her book bag off of the couch, sat at the kitchen table, and started to tackle her homework. She had make-up work from Monday, so she understood it would be more laborious than usual.
When Tom came home, she ran to meet him at the door. “Daddy, will you please take me to Target? I’m done with all of my homework.” She folded her hands pleadingly, threw out her boo-boo lip, and batted her eyes.
He melted. “Okay, Lizzie, after dinner.”
“Yes!” She gave me two thumbs up, beaming.
I put dinner on the table, and we sat down to eat. To be honest, I do not think she tasted it; she inhaled her food. Once she had cleaned her plate, she got up from the table, ran to her room to get her gift card, and before Tom had taken his last bite, she was standing next to him wearing her coat and shoes. “I’m ready to go.”
“Give me a second,” he said. He patted her on the head. We exchanged a glance that said this was okay, she was excited, and they would have daddy/daughter time at Target. Tom went upstairs to change into jeans. She stood by the back door waiting. She was waving her card in the air.
While he put his coat back on, I decided to take the gift card out of her hand and give it to Tom. “Lizzie,” I said. “You do not want to lose this. Let’s give it to Daddy so he can put it in his pocket for safe keeping.”
She looked slightly skeptical. Tom took it and placed it in his front pant pocket. “It is right here in my pocket. I just want to keep it until we get to the check out line. It is safe here.” He patted his jean pocket as a guarantee of its safety..
She looked at him reassured. She then walked across the kitchen to pat his pant pocket in the same place he did. She smiled and said, “Is that a rocket in your pocket?”
Tom looked at me dumfounded.
Pleased, she headed out the door.