As the year winds down there is the requisite flurry of parties. Yesterday was Emily's end-of-year party, and my job was to run the station where the kids made Jello aquariums. We were working on a 15 minute rotation. It was important to time the work so that the kids finished on schedule, and I was fortunate to find a good balance quickly.
This similar to what we were making --
clear cup filled with blue jello, swedish fish, graham cracker sand, and Cool Whip)
I was on the last group of kids and was enjoying my time with them thoroughly. I was bantering back and forth with one little boy in particular - let's call him PITA (for Pain In The Anterior-region). PITA was having a hard time following the rules and rather than chastising him I was distracting and engaging. I typically have good luck with this approach, but not today.
After a lot of fruitless effort I was getting exasperated with the boy and his 12,000 questions: Can I smush it? Can I stir it? Can I share it? Can I take it home... You get the idea. Finally, I'd had enough.
PITA: Can I eat it? Can I eat it?
PITA: Can I mix it all together first?
KathyB! (wondering if he didn't remember that we'd discussed this 3 times already). Yes, PITA. Of course you may eat it. Go ahead! I bet it's yummy!
PITA: Really?! I can eat it? Really...?
KathyB! Honestly, you can do whatever you want....
Do you ever get the feeling the world is moving in slow motion? As soon as those words passed my lips time changed. I remember looking into his eyes as his face lit up. I remember thinking that I'd made a terrible mistake but being unsure of the exact nature of the mistake. I remember the look of pure glee as his face burst into a smile. I remember thinking, "Noooooo..!"
I also remember PITA digging his hand into his Jello aquarium and slinging a handful of goop at his neighbor.
My eyes bugged out a little as I turned to look at the other mommy working the station. She didn't say anything, but I could see it in her eyes....