“gaming the system”

Maddie Baits and Switches Her Grandpa

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Trust me, I’m much more interesting than 300 stories!

Even when she’s chowing down, Maddie is unable to curb her mischievous nature. Proof of this surfaced yet again during lunchtime with the grandparents.

As usual, Maddie was enjoying various samples from around the table. However, her favorite food during this lunch period was definitely spaghetti. Spaghetti is awesome because of its amazing gaming potential.

Maddie made sure to catch her grandfather’s eye as she was making a lasso with a small string of my pasta. She very sweetly held out her hand to grandpa offering to share some of that delicious spaghetti with him. Touched by the gesture, he gently reached out to accept her tender offering.

As soon as his hand was about six inches away, she snatched the pasta away and slammed it into her mouth. Then she made small grunting noises as she feasted on not just the food, but also her victory. The whole table erupted into laughter as Maddie chomped on her false offering.

Encouraged by the raucous laughter, this game included about three more rounds as her grandfather was also an eager participant. Once again, that stunning little personality is growing into a true force of nature.

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Maddie Gaming the System Like an Old Pro

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Like taking candy from an adult!

After sleeping straight through three nights in a row, Maddie had led her parents into uncharted territory. Maddie’s mom had a 5am flight out of Newark and was hoping for another good night’s sleep. However, the baby flipped the schedule right around 10:30pm.

She was sounding off and making it clear that taking sleep for granted is always a fruitless proposition. Maddie knows from personal experience that during the nighttime hours, sleeping in her crib is mandatory.

The only exception is when her Mom has to get up very early the next morning. DING-DING-DING! I have still yet to discover how Maddie knew that this was one of those evenings. I even had the house swept for listening devices, but nothing turned up.

As you might have guessed, when Maddie went off the rails, I had to hustle her upstairs so that her mom could get some sleep. Once we were upstairs, all the commotion suddenly died down. I knew my little girl was gaming me.

She was thinking, does he have the guts to take me back downstairs? Is he ready to take a shot at the title? I knew it was a setup – you could smell it a mile away. But I had to try. At this point, Maddie was snuggled in deeply sleeping in my arms, no chance that she might wake up. But with this little girl, there’s always the chance that she’s playing possum.

I made it down to the sixth step with her when I must have hit a trip wire, because I triggered Maddie’s sonic scream alarm. She was crying and howling like a wounded cat. I scampered back upstairs and it was like I threw a switch. All sins were forgiven and forgotten. Maddie was safe and warm in her father’s arms and that evil crib might as well have been set up in Kinshasa.

So yes, I folded – the baby spent the night sleeping on me. But the joke is really on her. Sleeping on me might not be good for household discipline and I may be exhausted the next morning, but watching her sleep will always be one of my favorite activities. Besides, Maddie figured out that her father was an easy mark a long time ago.