Dinner was done and the girl was clamoring for one of the cupcakes we had baked on Friday in an attempt to be celebratory. As I struggled to hold her off until everyone else was done eating and convince her that asking every minute wouldn't make the cupcake appear faster, I had the idea to suggest we do the homework sent home by her teacher in the middle of last week. She loved the idea. As only someone who has never before done homework can.
I found the sheet of questions and we all sat together at the table. The husband finished eating. The boy yelled until I got him his own pen and sheet of paper on which he proceeded to scribble his own "homework". Meanwhile the girl and I worked through the questions together.
She started by writing her name at the top of the page. True to her sense of self, she wrote out her nickname instead of her full name. We talked about why the husband and I choose that name for her. I wrote down the reasons and then she read it back to me, repeating the sentences I had read to her only moments before.
We need a picture of when you were a baby I said. I'll draw one she said yanking the paper from me. We can use a photo I said. That excited her even more.
I found one of her early baby albums and she and I flipped through it. Every few pages the boy would lean over, point to the baby in the picture and yell Me! He didn't appreciate being corrected.
The girl and I settled on a photo and she helped me tape it to the bottom of the page. Her work done she went off to play and I tucked the sheet into her backpack for her teacher to find on Monday morning.