I came to enter my lackluster swim into my BeginnerTriathlete training log, and while I was briefly occupied I see her little head peep around the edge of the kitchen-way. "Oh, I hope you're eating your soup, 'cause if you're sneaking icing from what's left of the cake, you won't get to eat your last cupcake!" (Thank you mommie-psychic-ability.) Next thing I hear is sniffling. Rolling my ridiculous girth off the couch I discover her in chair, front of soup, icing smeared on the napkin, 'round her mouth, and all over her fingers. There had been a decent hand full of icing left, and it was definitely gone. I gave her a choice: finish her soup or go to her room, after wiping her face of course. I may have just discovered another trigger for myself...I simply despise dishonesty, and I felt a bit more than simple anger around this event. Fortunately for me (and everyone around me) I recognize this and consciously decide NOT to flip-the-f*-out. Why is it important? Because sneaking, and dishonest behavior is intolerable. And though I might feel the urge to waffle on this point---because maybe I wanted that icing for my brownie snack, or because it is cute she simply cannot resist icing, just like her Papa---if I laughed it off and made a joke of it, I expect that sneaking behaviors would continue. Hell, I already know they would because of my own behaviors and what I've witnessed in other family dynamics. Dishonest behavior is unacceptable, and can be dangerous, especially later in her young life.
So, after the tantrum, after the rest of her soup (to balance the hand full of kiddie-dope she shoved in her maw), she comes to me and we talk about it. Why it was a poor choice, what would have been a better choice. I tell her I love her and I'm glad that she came to talk about it. She suggests that maybe after dinner she'll get her last birthday cupcake. That, my sweet offspring, depends on your behavior for the remainder of the day.