I know if there’s one thing that can distract me in an instant, it’s the mention of chocolate cake. Something about that decadent moist chocolate complete with frosting sliding down my throat and into my gullet. Goddamn! You know who else gets distracted by chocolate cake? Toddlers.
You can use chocolate cake to hypnotize a toddler. Once chocolate cake is mentioned, a toddler will follow you around like the Pied Piper. You can easily link children doing your evil bidding to chocolate cake. It’s the hook, line and sinker. The stick and the carrot, the all encompasing purity that toddlers crave.
Jude knows this. Jude loves chocolate cake. Jude also loves his quiet time while he’s trying to sleep. Jude doesn’t want to hear his sister screaming because she doesn’t want to go to bed. This was the scene when we returned from our trip around the US. The four of us, in a basement bedroom underneath my parents house. All of our sleep schedules were so fucked from our trip that it took several weeks for us to fall back into normalcy. That’s what happens when you cross 43 time zones in 2 weeks. Margot was the last one to get back on track with her sleep routine.
On a particularly difficult night, that 2 foot tall lady screamed with such force it could have woke the dead. Kanye West himself would have conceded at least that victory to her instead of taking it for himself. We listened from above as her tiny voice boomed through the house and out into the hinterlands. Then, we heard Jude. It sounded like he was yelling at her to be quiet. Well we couldn’t let both kids be in agony. Margot was ultimately fine, Jude just wanted to go to bed. Making our way downstairs though we found a very different scenario than what we expected.
Margot was still screaming. But as we listened quietly we heard Jude clearer. He wasn’t yelling at her to be quiet. He was yelling at her offering her chocolate cake. And as we listened, Margot started to settle down. The two were talking about chocolate cake. Jude would start. “Mago, Mago, you want some chocolate cake?”
Then Margot would answer, her tiny voice quivering from screaming. “No don want choco cake.”
“Mago, want some chocolate cake? It’s hot, ok? You have to wait for it.”
“No. No don’t want choco cake. Don’t want it Jude Jude”
I wish I had my phone with me. I wish I could have recorded them so on the days when they fight and make me want to sell them on craigslist, I could play it back and remember how sweet and loving they can be.
The one time my phone wasn’t attached to my body!
Alaina and I listened intently as Margot went from screaming monster to soothed demon. I had no idea a soothsayer’s bag included a cookbook. I knew having barefoot contessa on for hours at a time would work out for us in the end. I honestly didn’t relize the full potential of that wonderful woman though.
Knowing my kids have each other to lean on is a better feeling than any chocolate cake could give me. And one that won’t make me gain a ton of weight.