September 28, 2011

If it's yellow...

As the daughter of a botanist dad and a frugal mom, I've been working with Rob to teach the kids about conservation and recycling. Jannika, my star overachiever, has (of course) excelled in this training. She doesn't leave the water on while brushing her teeth. She recycles all of Silas' drawings she deems "not beautiful." She tearfully screams at Silas when he (howling with laughter) wastes electricity making "lightning storms" with the closet light switch.

So last week I taught Jannika "If it's yellow, let it mellow; if it's brown, flush it down." Which she, unfortunately, finds super super funny . . . (just waiting for that phone call from her preschool teacher recommending I probably not teach bathroom-related rhymes at home).

Apparently, however, this has been the only conservation/recycling lesson Silas has absorbed. Probably because it's about the potty. And he's a boy.

He absolutely got my point about not flushing pee - he initiated garbled conversation after garbled conversation last week about it, much to my bewilderment. And he must have also gotten my point about having to "waste water" to flush down solids because he just stopped pooping. Altogether.

So this past weekend on the way to our campground in Oklahoma, the rest of us had to endure riding in a hotbox of a car, breathing in fumes of rotten sulfur while Silas just giggled and giggled from his car seat. (Jannika, at one point, tearfully burst out, "I can't live like this!")

But Silas, our now A+ conservationist, did not waste flushing water in the three bathrooms to which we made emergency potty runs on the way up. Nope. He held it until we were exploring the campground outdoor amphitheater (where there were no bathrooms).
And the next day he waited for the hiking trail (where there were no bathrooms).

I didn't know if it was a fluke or what, so I covered my bases and had a serious heart-to-heart conversation with him yesterday.

Me: Hey, Sy-Guy, you know you can poop in the potty, right? I'll even give you a marshmallow!
Silas: Mommy, you a mummy? [the funniest joke a 2-year-old can tell]
Me: Nope. Hey, you know you can't poop outside in the yard, right?
Silas: Mommy, I go tick or teating?
Me: In a month. Hey, poop in the potty, K?
Silas: Mommy, you a mummy?
Me: Well, it was great talking. Glad we had this conversation.
Jannika [from the living room . . . with much glee]: If it's brown, flush it down!

I give up. Flush away.

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