Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Anything you can do, I want to do too

Regardless of the angle of the sun or the time of day Lucy always has a shadow. The shadow is her younger sister Paige. Ocassionally Lucy gets frustrated by having a constant follower or observer, but she does very well with it the majority of the time.

The best way to get Paige to eat a banana is to give one to Lucy and have Paige see her eating it. The same is true with getting dressed. Paige is typically content running around the house in just her diaper, until she sees Lucy putting on her daytime clothes.

While eating healthy food and getting dressed are productive examples of this game, there are multiple funny example of this too. When we brush our teeth, Paige uses the toothpaste you can swallow because that is exactly what she does...chews on the brush until she has swallowed all the toothpaste. Lucy knows the traditional routine of brushing, spitting, rinsing, etc. When Paige is done "brushing" her teeth she always insist that we hold her up over the sink so she can "spit". Paige's spit consists of her leaning her head down into the sink and making spitting noises. She aways pops her head back up with a look of accomplishment.

I am optimistic this monkey see, monkey do routine will be beneficial for potty training. Already Paige is asking to sit on the potty after Lucy uses it. So far Paige hasn't gone potty, but she has the rest of the routine mastered. She will sit on the pot, smile, hold her arms up to get down, and then lean over to get wiped. We have been amazed at the detail of her observations and ability to remember routines.

This sword cuts both ways of course. When Lucy is jumping on the couch, running around the house, trying to hang upside down off the swingset, not wanting to share, or not wanting to sit at the table to eat you can bet Paige is trying her best to do the exact same thing.

As much as we appreciate and enjoy when Lucy sets a good example it is important for us to remember she is only four. While being responsible and setting a good example are skills we want Lucy to develop, we don't want her to feel pressure to be perfect all the time.

Observing what is sure to be a lifelong friendship is ultimately a lot of fun. We also know that there may be periods of time in the future that Paige and Lucy might not want to spend as much time together. Until those days come Paige will continue to shadow Lucy and learn life lessons including: how to stand when dad wants to put sunscreen on you, how to plug you nose when you are by the compost pile, and that there is never a bad day to rock a birthday party hat.

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