Posted by: Deanna | January 19, 2008

A Well Grounded Girl

We have a strict rule around here that Mary has to be in the house before it gets dark. Her friend lives on the other end of our long street and the two of them are usually zipping back and forth between our two houses, gathering Barbie stuff, deciding which place to squeal about Zac Ephron and deciding which house is having the best dinner.

The last time she was down the street and there was little question as to whether or not it was dark, I headed down the street to get her, ready to hand out the punishment. I had only walked past a few houses when I could see her racing toward me on her bike with that ‘oh crap I’m in trouble’ look.

As she reached me I informed her that she was one lucky little girl. If I had had to go all the way down the street to find her playing blissfully unaware of the time she would be grounded. We discussed the reasons behind the rule while we made our way home.

So yesterday she breezed out the door, heading down the street, leaving us with “I’ll be home before dark!” and I reiterated ‘BEFORE dark’, cuz she’s slept since the last we spoke on the subject and I know that I have to remind her even though the statement had just come out of her mouth.

As I’m finishing up dinner, I look out the window and remark, “I wonder if Mary has thought about what time it is.”

The thought crosses my mind to head off down the street to fetch her, but it’s kind of cold, it’s drizzling a bit and I just don’t want to. So I wait.

It gets darker.

Soon she explodes through the door.

“I’m SO sorry, Mom!”

“Yeah, so am I.” I tell her.

She goes into her explanation as to why she is home after it is clearly dark outside.

I tell her, “Well, you know there will be consequences.”

I wanted her to stew a bit, so I told her we would discuss that later. Being her father’s daughter, though, I knew it would torture her and I didn’t plan on it going on too long.

She beat me to the punch, though.

She says to me,

“I already know I’m grounded, right?” looking for confirmation, examining my face, wondering if that’s all there will be to the punishment.

“And I don’t plan on playing with anyone tomorrow! I’ll stay home and clean my room!”

Dumbfounded, because I was looking forward to handing out the punishment myself just a bit, I said,

“We’ll discuss it later.”

Damn! The kid grounds herself! And to top it off she cleans up after dinner really, REALLY good and packs food for her dad’s lunch on top of it!

Later, her only question to me was, “Are you mad at me?”

Resisting the urge to scream at her that Yes I am and that she’s a child of Satan’s spawn, I just told her

“No, just a bit disappointed.” and we reviewed, yet again, the importance of the ‘before dark’ rule.

So she went to bed (on her own! on time! for a school night! which it wasn’t! but she went anyway!) a happy girl.

I wonder what I can dream up for her to do today. Hmmmm…. I see dirty bathrooms in her future. But that’ll backfire, too. Last time I used the toilet as a punishment she emerged from her bathroom informing me that ‘That was fun!”  {sigh}



  1. They love bathroom punishment!! Official water play…
    Ok, this may sound kinda “evil”… I think the “I’m cutting ur allowance” punishment works… hahahhaa..

  2. Yep, my daughter is two and starting to get cheekier by the day… She went to her room when she did something wrong even before I told her to, leaving me frustrated and sighing away 😀

    I hoped you don’t mind that I’ve tagged you for a meme. Please click to my link to see how to play 🙂

    Thanks 🙂

  3. MMM…I must have missed that stage of the game.


  4. Deanna,
    I highlighted the whole text and copy-paste into my post. I actually surprised that it worked :p

    Good luck 🙂

  5. Golly she sounds like my Emma – LOL

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