There was a brief scuffle in the family room this morning followed by the sound of toy pans being dumped on top of a toy kitchen.

I stopped brushing my teeth and listened.  There was an obvious physical confrontation going on, then more crashing of pots, followed by a few outbursts between Clara and Lydia concerning the proper storage location of their shared kitchen supplies.

“Girls?”  I yelled through frothy teeth.  “Girls are you seriously fighting over where to put your fake pans?”

But they ignored me and continued their argument which quickly lead to Lydia crying in a loud wail and rushing past my bathroom door on her way up the stairs towards her bedroom.

Behind her Clara yelled accusingly, “Lydia!  You are being rude as a hamburger!”

I stepped out the door into the family room and looked at the little girl.  “Excuse me?”

She stared at my feet and said quietly, “I said Lydia was being rude as a hamburger…”

I pointed my toothbrush at her and said as firmly as I could muster, “You watch your language.  We don’t talk like that in this house.  Go sit in the chair until I am done in the bathroom.”

“Sorry, Daddy,” she said, and then walked sheepishly across the room to sit in the recliner.

I turned to walk back to the bathroom and discovered little Gideon sitting at the bottom of the stairs like a spectator on a set of bleacher, grinning madly.  He had been watching his sisters the whole time, and had apparently found their entire ridiculous female exchange quite enjoyable.  I picked him up and carried him with me into the bathroom.

“…rude as a hamburger…” I mumbled to him as I set him on the counter.  And I felt a flash of recognition in his eyes.  A small moment of shared masculine eye rolling at the absurdity of women.  I tousled his hair.  “You might be the only thing in this house that keeps me sane, little man.”

He smiled, then lifted his shirt and pointed at his belly button.