“Poke” bluegills that your daddy caught with your pink princess pole and show appropriate enthusiasm (including screeching and jumping up and down), but refuse to actually reel anything in, or even fish, after the first five minutes.

After driving to three different ice cream places to find one that’s open, take four licks of your pink ice cream with eyes, lose interest, go play under a tree while Mommy indulges in TWO cones.

Insist on Daddy. Period. Scenario does not matter. It’s Labor Day. Daddy has a right to labor with you.

One bucket with soapy water + one grungy-dirty-full-of-arachnids play house + one of Mommy’s (old?) t-shirts = time enough for Mommy to think about hanging out the laundry

Transform the bench by the back door into a stove, take an old pan and fill it with weeds that are conveniently located all over the flowerbeds and make “broccoli,” and then force the dog or your mom to eat it. Hey, it’s good for them!

While Mommy sneaks off to hang out laundry, secretly trail her using your highly refined tiptoeing skills. When she least expects it, run over to the clothespins and start pulling them out, counting as you go, and reaching up to help. Don’t worry, she’ll let you. She’ll be laughing too hard not to.

As your pregnant-as-a-manatee mother fights off the urge to strangle the scratching-like-a-maniac dog (he’s allergic to the new flea stuff too, as it turns out, and there’s no relief until he stops his scratching) with her bare hands, offer her alternatives for her energy by piling up every stuffed animal and doll in front of the couch, effectively trapping her there. Then, when it looks like she’ll clear a path, bring in the coloring books and crayons. It’s sort of like cooking, but bigger. And it involves everything you own. Try it. You’ll like it.

Find yourself in the car? After the car is moving, ask for whichever of these does not exist: a drink, a blankie, a specific book, Dora sunglasses, or some combination of two. Upon hearing the negative response, wail and then insist on the Tiger Songs CD that Mommy sings in her sleep.