#844: The Cleaner-Upper

It's not just 5-year-olds who get excited over this stuff. I mean, c'mon—just seeing this makes you want to do something creative, doesn't it?

There are fewer things more dreadful to a parent’s ears than these three words: “glitter glue accident”.

This is what the Boy sheepishly declared to me recently, when leaving the arts-and-crafts area, with his friend/partner-in-crime following him. But upon investigation, I found that there really was no point in being upset: the wonderful inventors of glitter glue knew enough about kids to have made their product easily washable. Besides, how can a parent be upset when the son says helpfully, “It’s okay. I showed [friend] how to clean it up, and we did a good job, see?” Cut to the image of the stack of wet cloths to one side, and a wide swath of red glitter glue , following the rough path of two pairs of five-year-old hands.

Two lessons learned from this:

1) Always be on high alert when you hear a couple of kindergarteners whispering quickly, followed by many trips to the washroom and the constant running of the faucet. Be especially worried when you hear them call out “It’s okay. We can handle it.”

2) Even if it takes more effort to clean up after they’ve “handled” it, it is nice to know that your child has moved on from trying to cover up a mistake, to genuinely trying to clean up.

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