The coming of nightfall brings a mysterious occurrence to our home every night. Our once peaceful household is gradually filled with increasing amounts of activity. As I am getting more and more tired and starting to settle everyone down for the night, the kids seemed to have some invisible source of energy.
Remember the Superfriends and the Justice League of America Saturday morning cartoons? Remember the really cool Wonder Twins? They had a routine in which they would touch hands and shout "Wonder Twin powers, activate!" and then they would be able to take the form of different shapes. Well my kids are not twins and though I have never witnessed them doing it, I am convinced that this is their mantra every evening.
It seems that the nonverbal 1-year old (Alyssa) and the very verbal 4-year old (Chase) must secretly get together and shout "Activate!" every day around 6 pm. Alyssa begins dancing her bouncing, arm-waving routine as Chase begins crawling around pretending he is a dog (complete with barking) or using his ruler as a sword. Next, Alyssa starts chasing her brother around squealing with glee as he pertends to run from her. Then, Alyssa may take a break from that game to spend some time twirling around the middle of the floor until she gets dizzy while Chase gets his Dad to start wrestling. Alyssa quickly comes to the scene of the full-body contact and literally throws her body on the pile. (All this is happening while I am either trying to finish my writing for the day or straightening up and making preparations for bedtime).
Eventually, my "Wonder Twins" succumb to my best efforts to settle them down. This is no easy task and usually requires some superhero strength of my own. After everyone is asleep, I spend time asking myself what I can do differently the following night to thwart my little heroes and their nighttime activation.