Sunday, September 5, 2010


Joseph loves Thomas the Tank Engine. Joseph loves playing with the Thomas the Tank Engine table at the toy store. Joseph loves it so much that he will ask to go there a few dozen times a day. Since we do not want to aggravate the people of the toy store by playing there every day and never buying something, we ration visits to once every week or two. I try to explain Joseph how this works by using the calendar and showing him what day we are and when we will go. He dutifully listens and then just ask again.."Shall we go to the Thomas Table?" "Shall we go in the car and go bye bye to the Thomas Table?" Needless to say that today when we actually DID go to the Thomas table, I almost felt a sense of relief. Yes.. we are going to the Thomas Table.

Unfortunately, we did not stay long at the Thomas Table.

Joseph knows he needs to be gentle with his little brother. He also knows that he can not just do anything, or there will be a consequence. If he deliberately crashes into his brother when we are all playing on the bed, mama takes the little brother away. This is a big punishment and usually followed by wails of "I want him. Mama needs to come back!" He knows that if he throws his toys, they get taken away. (except for squishy toys that are allowed to be thrown). And he knows that kicking, hitting, or blatant disobedience mean time out. He knows all this.

So I do not understand why, after two warnings, he decided to deliberately push down his little brother, who is just learning to stand, while he was holding on to the Thomas table. "Michael can't play." is just no excuse, right?

So... up we grabbed Joseph, Michael went in the stroller and we moved out of the store, with a screaming and crying todler in his fathers arms who kept wailing that he wanted to go back to the Thomas table. His cruel parents however did not relent, and just kept saying that he should not have pushed his little brother (after two warnings, where we had intervened no less). Once at home I tried to explain to a still crying and hicupping Joseph that this was a "consequence" (hey, if he can learn the word metamorphosis, he can learn this one). If he pushed his little brother down, he was not a good boy. And if he is not a good boy he can not play with the Thomas table. Through hiccups and crying he told me he wanted the consequence. I guess he did not really understand. Ah well, he will in time. And one day he will thank us, right? Right?

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