September 1, 2011


Mia's room is a source of some frustration. We like Mia's room to be nice and orderly so she can find stuff and we don't have to hunt for it. She likes it, well, looking like Libya does right about now. We've made her allowance contingent on a clean room but she's got some very strong opinions of who to keep it clean. We frequently disagree.

Me: I really think it would be a lot easier if you cleaned up your room a little at the beginning or the end of every day. Then at the end of the week, it wouldn't be so bad.
Mia: I have an alternative theory. I think I should just wait until the end of the week, then clean up once. So I'm saving time.
Me: You should try it my way. Just once.
Mia: I'm not very motivated to do that.

We agreed to disagree but that's not what's remarkable about the conversation. No. What's remarkable is that Mia sat right on her bed next to me, turned and uttered the phrase I have an alternative theory. Not no, you're wrong or stupid old guy. I have an alternative theory.

I don't know many six year olds who talk like that. Hell, I don't know many 38 year olds who talk like that. But it fits.

I'm not trying to brag about my kid and her vocabulary. I'm just terrified. I mean, if she's like this at six what's she going to be like at sixteen? Flying a plane? Doing advanced calculus? Dating?

Posted by Chris at September 1, 2011 8:07 AM

How did I know that she REALLY did say that??? What a smart cookie, what a lil' pumpkin.

Posted by: Dawn at September 1, 2011 8:24 AM

First (and only) order of business: Pick Your Battles!
You don't like the way her room looks? Shut the door. I haven't met a kid yet who has or cares to have a clean room.
If her choice is to clean it once a week - let her clean it once a week.
As for the testing - awesome! But watch out cus those smarties (like my niece) will test your patience. As she seems to be doing already.

Posted by: NancyB at September 1, 2011 8:29 AM

At 16, she'll be doing her calculus homework while taking her date on a quick flight around town with the pilot's license she earned on her 16th birthday.

Fell better now?

Posted by: COD at September 1, 2011 8:52 AM

Oy, I feel for you!

ON the bedroom issue..someone said pick your battles- clean bedrooms was always one of my battles because a messy room led to so many more battles about not being able to find school books and homework and gym shoes and what not. If everything is in it's place, it leads to easier mornings, which are hectic enough without having to spend crucial minutes looking for that calculator they need for Geometry.

On the language abilities? My youngest was the same way. I was amazed at his verbal abilities from the time he started talking (which to be honest was very late. We didn't think he would ever talk, but he hasn't shut up since he did!) Now he is 16 an can argue circles around me and when I hear him talking to his peers they often ask what a word means that he uses. He is on Speech and Debate team and is planning on going to law school.

Posted by: Lisa at September 1, 2011 9:00 AM

Impressive Mia! (But go clean your room.)

Posted by: Heather at September 1, 2011 9:04 AM

I take testing scores with a grain of salt with my kids. I remember that myself and a lot of my friends were tested as reading at the 8th grade level in 2nd or 3rd and 12th grade level around 5th or 6th. After that, we began to flatten out and catch up.

But, with college costs what they are (and are going to be), I hope for your sake she stays brilliant! :)

Posted by: Kaz at September 1, 2011 9:30 AM

oh, the scariest of them all.

Posted by: linda at September 1, 2011 10:03 AM

That is scary funny!

My daughter is very motivated by money, and we've finally found something that works for her. But our son's room...Libya is probably in better shape. Good luck!

Posted by: Kate M at September 1, 2011 11:39 AM

An "alternate theory?" You are so screwed :)

Posted by: Amy at September 1, 2011 12:40 PM

My friend, you are in trouble! I, as well, am in the same boat. My kid uses vocabulary that I only just started using myself! ;-)

As for the room cleaning...I feel your pain on that front, too! You figure out how to get Mia to clean her room, let me know so I can get Leda to do hers!

Posted by: cyndy at September 1, 2011 4:44 PM

Well, at least if she's flying the plane you know she'll be safe! I just love your kid and her brilliance!!

Posted by: Krush at September 1, 2011 7:55 PM

'I'm not very motivated to do that'

That is awesome, but alas I suspect BOTH your kids are going to give you guys a run for your money.

Posted by: jackie at September 2, 2011 10:52 AM

My niece is scaring my sister-in-law with the sophisticated vocabulary she uses... and she's only 4. I imagine Mia was much the same at that age. And no one knows where she hears the stuff she says... and she always uses words in their correct context. Very scary. ;o)

Posted by: ironic1 at September 2, 2011 9:16 PM

Though Mia is the age of my six year old, she sounds a lot like my oldest has always been - such a tremendously "old soul" - someone said to me a few weeks ago, "She's only nine? She seems... older."

And it's a good thing. Sometimes it's easy to forget how young she is though...

Posted by: Sarah at September 3, 2011 12:46 PM

My oldest does. She's nine now. But yeah, at six she was well...her. She's always been like this. I can't wait to see what they do to change the world.

Posted by: Issa at September 6, 2011 1:42 PM