Thursday, January 24, 2013

Even More Games I Play with My 3 Year-Old

Whitney is playing "We're going to the ball" in this photo.
Chase's boots are her dancing shoes.
The hall mat is The Ball (her dance floor).
Her lack of pants indicate that there's more going on at this party than just dancing.

Baby - Playing "Baby" makes me want to shove hot forks in my eyes, which is probably why it's Whitney's favourite game. She ALWAYS wants to be an infant and she wants me to take care of her. She plays this game even when I refuse to take part; she follows me around on her hands and knees, clutches at my ankles, and says "goo goo ga ga" or "whaaah waaaah waaaahnn!" until my head explodes. She puts herself to bed in Lorelai's crib. She wants to drink from real bottles. She swipes soothers. I want to murder her, but I try to be sympathetic. I know she's jealous of all of the attention Lorelai gets, so I indulge her a bit - not just in baby stuff, but also in special mommy-daughter time, games, creative play, etc., but this baby game is hard work. I have explained over and over again that I like big girls much better than babies (truth), and that I like playing other games, but she clings to this infant thing just the same. It's a phase I hope she gets over, like, NOW.

Doggy/Kitty - This game, where Whitney pretends to be a dog or a cat, is slightly more tolerable than "Baby" if only because she doesn't pretend to cry during it. Also, I get to sit on the couch while I throw an imaginary stick for Whit to fetch. Reeelaxing. Part of my responsibility as a pet owner is putting a bowl of water on the floor for the dog/cat to drink from. Water gets everywhere and inevitably, our real cat will start drinking from that same bowl, forcing me to put down another one for Whitney. I usually cut the game short when Buddy finds that second bowl of water and/or when there is more water on the floor than in the bowl. It's annoying, but cleaning up that mess is still preferable to playing "Baby".

Whiney Monster - Okay, this isn't really a game so much as a technique I stole (and potentially warped) from Jennifer Kolari to get my kid to stop whining. When Whit's voice reaches a pitch that I equate to nails on a chalkboard, I say something like "it sounds like the Whiney Monster has jumped down your throat again and made your voice sound like this [insert whiney voice here]. Open your mouth so I can see him!" If Whitney isn't overly upset, she opens her mouth so I can peer in and shout "Get out of there, Whiney Monster!". It gets a laugh and Whit will stop whining (at least, that's the goal). Every once in awhile, she tells me that it's not the Whiney Monster but Baby Monster* who is paying her a visit. Almost 50% of the time, the Whiney Monster technique doesn't work at all and I'm forced to play other games like "Mommy can't hear you when you use that voice" and "If you don't stop whining, you're going to your room or Mommy's gonna fit you with a pair of cement shoes and throw you in the river".

*Baby Monster - "Baby Monster" more or less grew out of "Pink Monster/Monster on the Rocks". Baby Monster (a tiny, pink, male creature named "Karen" but often referred to as just "Baby Monster") is Whitney's imaginary friend. He shows up everywhere, but he's famous for joining us when we are out and about. Sometimes he rides in Whitney's pocket or in her hand, sometimes the stroller. Sometimes he runs ahead and beats us home. He's also a big fan of the bathtub and joins Whitney for a dip. Lately, his family has been visiting us, too. His dad, a grey monster, has taken a particular liking to me. I think Whitney created Daddy Monster to be my pet like Baby Monster is hers. I always wonder what she imagines Baby Monster to look like. I personally picture him as a dusty-rose coloured saltasaurus. "Baby Monster" is one of my favourite games because it doesn't involve any clean-up, it doesn't require me to spoon fake food into my kid's face, and it's open ended enough that Baby Monster can do just about anything. It's fun to hear Whitney make up new adventures for him.

You can read about more games I play with Whitney here and here.


  1. i remember Karen! For some reason I always imagined him looking like a tiny pink bullfrog. I'm impressed by your dino knowledge - I'd never seen a saltasaurus before :|

  2. Full disclosure: I just google image searched dinosaurs until I saw the one I was thinking of. "Stegosaurus" didn't pull up the right dinosaur... ;)