- It is not okay to load your brother into your back pack and carry him around the house on your back.
- It is not okay to sit on your brother and pin him to the floor.
- It is not okay to offer him food that will cause him to choke and die.
- It is not okay to pretend to offer him food that will cause him to choke and die, and then pull it away right before he gets in his mouth so that you might enjoy the simple pleasure of watching his face crumple with disappointed expectations.
- It is not okay to hide your brother from mommy, hide n' seek style.
- It is not okay to feed him grass.
- It is not okay to get in his crib while he is trying to nap.
- It is not okay to wake him up from his nap because you are bored and want to play.
- It is not okay to toss him in the air and catch him, especially while standing on the tile floor.
- It is not okay to strap him to the computer chair and spin him in circles as fast as you can.
Clearly we had a lot of territory to cover and to be honest, I'm not quite sure why there are so many gray areas my older children are confused about when it comes to the proper care and handling of our baby. In my all-time favorite Christmas story, The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, the Herdman kids are the worst kids in the world, but the meanest of them all is the youngest child, Gladys. The reasoning is that each child teaches the next one all the naughty things that they know, so by the time the youngest comes along they are well-schooled in the art of torture. After the past few weeks I have no doubt this is the fate that awaits my sweet baby James.