Monday, June 15, 2009

Dunker Daughter

My daughter is a dunker. By which I mean she enjoys submerging solids into liquids. As you can imagine, this isn’t terribly convenient for me. It’s not like we live in Topeka where my daughter can drop rocks into buckets of fresh rainwater in the prairie outside our home. It doesn’t take a lot of thinking to imagine what kinds of containers full of liquid are available for dunking in our apartment.

I’ll give you a hint. I thank God for toilet bowl locks.

But despite the fact that we’ve bolted the toilet lid down, and visitors to our home can never figure out how to take a pee without my tutorial, Seconda still finds plenty of non-sanctioned ways to dunk. And before you suggest that I fill the sink up with water and let her go to town, let me add that I do offer my child plenty of opportunities for water play. I am a Montessori mother and I know the virtue of these unstructured, self-directed

sensory journeys. She just prefers dunking if it’s combined with mischief.

Which leads me to my current conundrum.

In the morning I drink coffee. This isn’t just my morning beverage, it is the only thing tying me to sanity. I need that morning coffee. I need it so immediately that David sets up my coffee maker every night before he goes to bed so that in the morning all I have to do is press a button and it starts dripping the steaming, delicious goodness. So when the children wake me at 6am with their invariably unreasonable demands (“We need to make a pop-up book about the solar system right now!” “I want chocolate for breakfast!” “You can’t change my diaper! I want to wipe my OWN POOPY BUTT!”) I can cope, because I have coffee to drink. Lately though, a peculiar thing has been happening. I’ll make my coffee, mix in milk and sugar in the perfect proportions, take a few sips and then leave it in the coffee table while I go attend to one of the many unreasonable demands on the agenda. When I come back a minute or two later and take a sip of my warm coffee, I find that along with my coffee I am drinking a plastic figurine of Glenda, the good witch of the North. Or maybe a harmonica. Or maybe a post-it with the phone number of the expert I am supposed to call in a few hours to interview for an article I’m working on.

If I place the coffee of a higher surface I know for sure she will climb whatever she has to, to reach it and it would probably result in not only coffee contamination but coffee spillage, just about the worst fate to befall a mother at 6:07AM. Or maybe I should buy one of those state-of-the-art thermoses with the sealed top that you’d have to be a secret agent baby to open. Possible solutions, readers? I am open to suggestion.