Chris's birthday is next Wednesday (which, be sure to stop by then, because I have a fun birthday game planned), and it's one of those that is divisible by 5 and therefore requires a slightly better than normal gift. At least to my mind. I've had the gift in mind for months, and two weeks ago I scheduled a meeting for yesterday that just happened to be near a store where I could acquire said gift, so I had it all worked out. Go to my meeting, go birthday shopping, make it home in plenty of time to hide the evidence, forget to wrap it until three minutes before he gets home on his birthday. But, as I was explaining this plan to Mia at dinner on Sunday night, I realized it had a fatal flaw. I was taking Mia with me. Mia is a snitch.
I mean, she's 2, right? She can't help it. But when it was my birthday, Chris took her (and me, whatever) to Target to let her pick out the decorations and he told her not to tell me and it took all of four minutes for her to let it slip that she had chosen Elmo plates. And it is at least partly our fault. At dinner every night, we ask Mia to tell Chris what we did that day. She used to just stare blankly at him and then demand more grapes, but these days she is pretty good at it. She can tell him that we went to storytime and what the stories were about and who we saw there. Sure, sometimes she tells him what we did three days ago, but she's more or less accurate. I couldn't see any way out of it. I had to take Mia with me, there were at least even odds that she would recognize what I bought, and if she did there was about a 90% chance that she would tell Daddy all about it at dinner. I decided there was really nothing I could do other than warn Chris that if she told, he would be receiving his gift a week and a half early. There are worse things, I suppose, but I have been planning this one for quite a while and I was a little bummed about it.
But, she hasn't told him. At least, not yet. Possibly that's because I was diabolically clever and forced the sales guy to use a code word ("puppy") rather than ever mentioning the item by name. And maybe it's because I told Mia we were buying Daddy a puppy, which I admit is slightly cruel to the child, but looking for the puppy did serve as a good distraction from what was really going on. I suspect, however, that the kid is just smarter than we think. Not smart enough to keep a secret, which she just doesn't have the ability to do at this point. Just smart enough to understand that sure, Daddy gave her $5 to tell him what we bought, but Mommy gave her $10 to keep it quiet. She certainly no stranger to the concept of bribery - we used to pay her to sleep through through the night - but hush money was a new one. She's discovered a whole new source of income.