Since moving to the Pacific Northwest many years ago, I've become somewhat accustomed to the rain. I still don't like it, but I'm now prepared for it with my designer rain boots and rain coat and lack of umbrella so I don't look like a tourist. The one thing I'm unsure I'll ever become accustomed to is the fact that my children love the rain. And, when I say love, I mean that they would prefer for days to be rainy so that they can go outside and splash in the puddles or run around and get wet. So, what does a rain-loving child do when weeks go by with no rain? Well, they make it themselves.
A rain-loving child wakes up sometime before 4:30 am, escapes from his baby-proofed and booby trapped room. He goes downstairs without waking anyone. He then finds both stoppers for the double kitchen sink, turns on the faucet and – as Elsa would sing – LETS IT GO! And, boy, does it go! It fills the sink until it sloshes over the edge cascading down the cabinets on the floor - the hardwood floors which you've desperately tried to keep looking nice despite the tremendous amount of toys able to inflict deep scratches in the surface. The water continues to flow into a torrential downpour quickly covering the entire surface of your kitchen and into the carpet in surrounding rooms.
The mother - who thought she was restfully sleeping wakes up to a strange sound at 4:47 am, quickly runs downstairs to check out the rain forest sounds only to be greeted by a small little being, dressed in only PJs and rain boots, proudly announcing, "Look, Mommy! We can splash!!!"
What does a speechless mother do to a child who is grinning from ear to ear over the fact that they have just successfully developed an indoor splash park? Do you discipline them? Would they understand why they’re being disciplined? If you do nothing, will you wake up another morning to another indoor rainstorm? If you do discipline them, what is the appropriate strategy?
In my case, my son had to help me clean up his mess. We used every single towel in our house and then borrowed some from our neighbor. He helped Shop Vac the water up (once I remembered that a Shop Vac could be used for liquid messes). We talked about playing with water and where and when it’s appropriate (i.e., not in the kitchen sink at 4:30 in the morning).
Now, my only problem is that apparently it's just as much fun to make an indoor rain storm as it is to clean one up...thank goodness it once again decided to rain outside. But, just in case, I may need to verify that my insurance policy covers flooding by toddler.
|If only I'd been in the right state of mind to get a picture before clean up...||Next time???|