if you happen to be in amelia's vicinity when she is in possession of a pen, crayon, or other writing/drawing object, then you are in line for a 'special tweat.'
let me explain: 'special tweats' are artworks created on parts of YOUR body, by amelia and whatever she has in her hand at the moment.
some tweats are invisible; these, generally speaking, are my favorite; if given a choice, i would take one of these over the other options. if we are in a cafe, she will colonise a water-glass, move in close to her intended target - schmoozing unashamedly - and say sweetly - 'what you wanna be, fweetheart? a boodiful butterfie? aw a DWAGON, aw a TIGER?' that is your cue to choose, and having chosen, to then submit gracefully to what is to follow. she will then dip two fingers, pope-fashion, into the water, and begin work on your face. 'close eyes fweetheart, close eyes - stay vewwy VEWWY still pwease' are the usual exhortations, as little fingers stroke masterfully across brow, eyelid and cheek. WARNING: if there is no glass of water available, she will use her own saliva . . . i kid you not. i put this warning out there because she will sometimes start 'painting' before you know what she is up to. if you are chatting to someone else, odds are that you may not realise until you have been well covered in spit.
special tweats also take the form of individual artworks on hands or feet. permission is usually asked, and often granted, with the lucky recipient needing a good scrub within seconds of the first sign of their own acquiescence . . . andrew's tweat seen above is a spider (only 7 legs though - we think she is a bit SLOW), katie's is a very respectable jellyfish on the calf, and mine a barbed-wire design anklet. seeing her sit astride the couch arm this morning, hunched in total concentration while she scrawled on my ankle, we thought it likely she will end her days as an artist, but most likely a TATTOO artist if her current form is any indication.
this is but one face of the drawing stage. our house is covered in samples of her work - MOST of which are on legitimate surfaces - we have thus far escaped any truly dramatic wall/door/floor or furniture art . . . thus far. the little easel we got for her in Belgium is used every day - not quite for the purposes intended - the blackboard is covered in whiteboard marker marks, the magnetic letters are covered in whiteboard marker (she carefully colours them in and then brings them to us as gifts - yesterday it was the number eight, once bright yellow, now dark blue, placed on the bridge of my nose as amelia announced that these were my 'g'asses' . . .), and the legs, shelf and frame have been boldly redecorated on an ongoing basis. we just know what amelia's school desks are going to look like after a few days of her being in residence. i recall mine all too well *shudder* while andrew says he NEVER did such a thing. sadly, i believe him, so will man up and take full artistic responsibility for this phase of amelia's career in the world of design.
on the dragon note - katie downloaded the book of How To Train Your Dragon on her iphone, so now amelia happily sits up in bed next to andrew, while the book is read to her from the phone at the same time as andrew reads his real paper book . . .
a new take on a much loved family tradition!