the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree…

…and all that.

Last night Mary was having a hard time sleeping, because she has a cough.

Twice–when Conor went in to say good night and when I got her up this morning (although not when I took her medicine in the middle of the night), she was asleep on the floor under the nightlight, book open in front of her.

I asked her just now, “Were you reading your book under the nightlight?”

She grinned and said, “Yes!”

I said, “You know, I used to do that when I was little and Grandma Cal used to tell me to stop.”

She said (scandalized)–“Why?!”

I said, “Because I needed to get my sleep, that’s why! But sometimes you need the book to get sleepy, huh?”

She said, “Reading is GOOD for your brain!”

I agreed. Then I said, “You do need to get to sleep at bedtime, though, too.”

She said, “That’s why I do it, to help my BRAIN! That’s why I’m so smart.” And then she settled in with her copy of “The One and Only Shrek” for naptime. Clearly, she has won this argument. (Also, clearly, I am not going to be able to make this argument, since I cannot go to sleep without a book to save my life.)

p.s. Can I just tell you how cool it is that she is learning to read? Just a little bit, so far, but she’s so close to the breakthrough. I can feel it.


3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Greatgrandma on January 5, 2011 at 3:10 am

    How cute! She is growing up so fast.


  2. Posted by Grandma Cal on January 5, 2011 at 3:12 am

    Too funny! I remember you reading no matter where you were or what you were supposed to be doing.


  3. Posted by Dave on February 18, 2011 at 12:17 am

    Just read this now. Reading at bedtime is an epidemic at my house. They’ll creep into other rooms, steal flashlights, huddle over nightlights, etc. I feel like a prison guard, having to shake them down every night. “Jack. Give me the books in your bed.” “Hurmumph. Okay. Here.” And he hands me one book. So I ask for the others. And he’ll keep handing them to me. And then I have to ask for the flashlight. Riley keeps them under his pillow, and Molly stuffs them along the mattress. I wouldn’t have a problem if they read for a bit and then went to sleep, but we’ve had Jack read until 1 in the morning (and his bedtime is SUPPOSED to be 8:30).

    Here’s the thing – I kind of like making reading an illicit pleasure for them. If they think that I want them to read, they’ll eventually rebel against it. If they think I’m trying to keep them from doing it, they’ll try to do it any way they can. I hold reading stories at bedtime over their heads. They only get it if they’re good and go to bed on time. So rather than being bored when I read them a story, they beg for them, and, like last night, when they don’t do what they’re supposed to, Molly was actively angry that she didn’t get her story (Jack just shrugged, probably because he already had a book stashed for reading after I left the room).

    Jack’s teacher said that Jack is the first child in her thirty some years of teaching that she’s had to ask to read less. He finishes his work as quickly as possible and then back to a book or drawing. We gotta be doing SOMETHING right.


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