Any mother of a preschooler will tell you that extended silences, however longed for, are often an indication of foul play.

I hadn't heard from Jasper in a long time and peeked my head into my bathroom to see that he had been busy. Very busy. He did something very Tymen-esque. He had opened up my mascara and smeared it ALL OVER our bathroom door, and gotten himself for good measure too. Maybelline black-brown everywhere.

Like a good mother, I widened my eyes and gasped, even though the absolute regret in his huge puppy dog eyes made me want to laugh. I turned my head and called for the big guns. In came Daddy, who looked as shocked as I was and said, "WHAT HAPPENED?" Jasper was inching himself back into our closet. I quietly snuck out and got the cameras, certain that I wanted to document this transgression.

But man, as soon as that boy saw the cameras he knew he had a chance.

He began to explain to me and the flip camera just what had happened. He giggled and shrugged his shoulders and told me he just was having fun and made a mess.

Here I am taping while he explains that he doesn't really know what happened. Note the hands gesturing his puzzlement at the course of events.

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Then he started giggling like crazy. He knew he was getting me as I was shaking so hard trying to keep a straight face but not doing so well.

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And then I totally cracked. You can see me turning away and trying not to laugh like a wild woman.

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Here is Jasper, pleased that his mother is laughing and not selling him off to the highest bidder.

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All through dinner, he was laughing and winking at me, like I was a co-conspirator instead of a mother searching for an appropriate punishment. He did get consequences, by the way. Daddy made him do a whole lot of scrubbing, and he had several extra chores for me the next day....and many threats about how this better not ever happen again.

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When I posted this picture on FB, I got about 45 comments which ranged from mothers sharing stories of similar grief (I laughed aloud at one mom who said that her son peed on her laptop) to the grandmothers who think it's just simply cute.

One of the comments was from my friend, Mary. I lived with her wonderful family when I was in college. I was a part time nanny but really they took care of me as just a part of their family and I love them dearly. Well, one day, little Joshie was discovered combing his hair with mascara and poking the wand up his nostrils. His mommy was indignant and I was doubled over with laughter, asking where the camera was. Life comes full circle, doesn't it?

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