Since the moment she was born, Elise has been pushing to catch up, to grow up. I have clearly explained to her that it will be many decades before another person will change her diapers and help her with all of her needs and even then she will probably be paying for that help from her retirement fund. I have told her that she should really soak up her infancy, appreciate the low expectations. She totally ignores me and is all, "Blah-bitty-blah, googoo---dog, mamma." She'll have none of my advice, Little Miss Independent. Instead she keeps a close eye on her big sister and pretty much assumes that she should have the same level of ability. Sometimes this frustrates her when she can't keep up, but we are quickly realizing that this little lady is motivated and capable so we try to afford her any opportunity to try something new.
Recently she saw Cordelia helping to feed the dogs and she really thought she should get in on that action. I assumed that this would mean dog food all over the floor, but I let her try. She took this job seriously and now it seems that she has given herself her first chore.
Twice a day she will grab the dog dishes and carry them to the closet where we keep their food. She will alert either myself or Eric and we will help scoop the food into the bowl. She will then carry the bowl into the kitchen where a spoonful of soft food is mixed in with the rest of the food. She will wait patiently. Then one of us will hand a bowl down to her and she will carry it to a dog. Then she comes back for the second bowl and delivers it to the remaining hound.
Excitedly carrying the food from the closet to the kitchen
Watching Betty Sprinkles eat her food
Feeding Bumblebee food from Betty Sprinkles' dish
Finally she will watch them eat, often chanting, "Dog" or "Woof, woof." She also likes to pick out morsels of food and hand feed the dogs. Bumblebee and Betty are exceptionally gentle during this process, but of course we keep a close eye on this portion of the meal to make sure there is no food aggression.
Taking pride in her work