The other day the boys got valentine's cards with some money from Grandma & Grandpa H. They've been learning about currency in school. Reed likes to think of all money in cents. So, say he has 5 dollars, he'll ask how much do I have? Mom says "you have 5 dollars." "No! How much money do I have?" Reed clarifies. Mommy doesn't understand obviously so I ask, "how much do you think you have?" (always turn the question back to the asker, and while we're asking, what do you think of your mother?). "No, how much cents do I have?" Mommy clues in, "oh, you have 500 cents, you are a rich man!" He was satisfied for a while until Douglas brought his money over to the table and Reed bragged about how many cents he had to Douglas. "I have more than you," boasts Reed. Douglas, never one to be out done, said "no you don't, I do." They had the same amount by the way. This turned into a full on yelling argument. Mommy intervened and threatened to make sure neither of them had the most by taking it all away.
They calmed down. About 5 minutes later, still sitting at the table I overhear Douglas talking to Reed saying, "Well, he wants to spend five hundred million billion dollars!"
Mommy's alert buttons start flashing and gets up to halt a new fight over money. I jump to the same conclusion and threaten once more to take the money away when Douglas defends himself and his brother. "We were just talking about how much Obama wants to spend."
They really do listen! In fact I think he heard me say something like that one morning when he and Reed came up and took Chris' place in bed. The alarm went off and the annoying lady who ruins my morning starts talking in her the-earth-is-going-to-explode-tomorrow voice. "President Obama says in his address to so-and-so that he's going to need another 500 billion dollars to..." blah, blah, blah. I drowsily complained and asked the ceiling and Chris who was in the shower who might be able to hear me, "where in the world is he going to get 500 billion dollars?! Doesn't he know there's already a deficit?" It turns out they were listening and merely rehashing information but with the same astounded inflection. We should figure out how many cents that is and drop him a note, just in case he doesn't know.