Thursday, January 27, 2011

Don't Spill the Beans

A while back I opened a cabinet in my office at work and realized that I had a rather large jar of pennies that I had forgotten I had put there.  It was not too long after that, that I passed by an empty desk in my office which, for quite some time had had a candy machine sitting on it.  It was one of those coin operated machines, with a turn dial like you see near the entrances of your local supermarket. You know the kind.
However, this machine was not filled with plastic eggs full of cheap and flimsy surprises like rubber spiders or rainbow tattoo's.  No, this candy machine was filled to the brim with jelly beans.  Jelly Bellies to be precise.  Colorful little lovlies in a wide range of different, delicious flavors like buttered popcorn and peanut butter.

Of course a few weeks later the two thoughts, bouncing randomly around in my otherwise empty noggin, accidentally bumped into each other and viola' I had an idea.  I realized, and it was an amazing concept, that for a few inexpensive shards of copper, I could bring Lukas a treat when I picked him up from pre-school. 

That was, If he had a good day of course.

As you would expect this plan met with overwhelming approval with Lukas, who loved the beans.  In fact, the morning after his first shot of beans we were driving past my work on our way to his preschool and he pointed to my building and said "Quick, pull into your work!  Let's get more jelly beans!"  "No, my work is closed buddy." I replied.  "Well, can't you open it?" he persisted.  To which I then replied "Well, yes, but that's beside the point.  I'm not going to." I held firm, all the time impressed by his 3 year old logic.

Fast forward to several weeks later (that would be now) when in effect it is a foregone conclusion that when I pick him up, I will be bringing a few tasty jelly beans.  And it has effectively turned from being a reward for having a good day, into a reward for getting his stuff together and getting to the car without darting off in several different directions.

Add to that the fact that the candy machine is nearly empty, and I can foresee that perhaps it may be a good time to start weaning my little guy off his jelly bean habit.  I consider this a wise decision since he has possibly become a wee bit too dependant on these treats. 

I think that perhaps he has even developed what, if left unchecked, could become a unhealthy reliance on these little beans.  I mean I don't want this to progress to a point where he would HAVE to have these lest he become upset and irritable?  How sad would that be?

Actually, can you hold that last thought readers?  I'm actually going to pause this post now.  I am just realizing that it is currently late afternoon.  And I really need to make a coffee run.

I don't do too well without my afternoon cup of Joe.


LittleBird said...

What a cute story! My daughter seeks out my husbands stash of good and plenty and always appears saying, "YUM, Daddy's candy!"

TempestBeauty said...

I went through this a few weeks ago.

I had a bag of skittles in my car, and, much exhausted of carseat battles with my two year old, I would promise him a few skittles if he sat nicely and let me buckle him in without kicking, hitting or screaming.

It worked REALLY WELL... until I realized that at some point, there would be no skittles. AND he shouldn't have to get a treat just to behave appropriately. So we quit cold turkey. It was rough! The battles got tougher. I nearly gave in. But eventually he started sitting nicely and letting me buckle him in just because he should, and not because he was getting candy. :)

Was a good idea at first, but it kinda turned us both into monsters ><

Otter Thomas said...


You're the Dad though so you can make up seemingly unfair rules if you want to.

Papa K said...

Gawd I love me some jelly beans.

Story gets this way with gum. I take comfort in knowing that we give her the sugar free kind though.

Diplo_Daddy said...

Your jelly bean picture reminded me of the bag of Jelly Belly Beans my wife and I had yesterday evening, while sitting in front of the TV watching The First 48 Hours. Those little buggers are horrible addictive!

Jack said...

Don't mess with the afternoon cup- it is death in this house. ;)

James (SeattleDad) said...

@Littlebird - They Candar don't they? Thanks for the comment.

@Tempest Beauty - Yeah, it is hard to draw the line when they keep asking for just a bit more. If you are strong like my wife, you can say no. Me? Not so strong.

@Otter - I suppose I will be making up a lot of those unfair rules over the years.

@Papa K - Kudos to you for finding a sugar free treat. We moderate with Lukas, but he still gets some sugar.

@Dipplo - Amen to that. I eat about half of them before he gets any. I tell myself it's for his own good.

@Jack - It's a requirement here too.

Anonymous said...

Ha! Nice. For whatever reason I've never taken to coffee, but always needed an AM diet coke to kick start my day. I've been weaning myself of that habit and I've been quite cranky lately. We had a similar situation with our son, but it was with pretzel M&Ms. It was a hard habit to break.