Okay, so everyone that knows me KNOWS how much I love to shop at Goodwill! Well, this weekend, a lesson was learned at my favorite shopping facility. Not only a lesson for me, but for others, as well.
You see, Parker and Kinlee like to look at the toys while we shop. So, as usual, off they went. After some time, I hear them laughing (you know the "what are they up to?" laugh). Here they come holding a plastic hand-shaped back scratcher with one finger missing. Actually, the finger was in Parker's other hand. Parker proceeded to tell me that he had broken the plastic hand. When asked (with a disgusted tone) how he broke it, he replied that he thought it was a "slapper" and hit something with it. Okay, sounds legit. I, of course, got onto him for breaking the toy, to which he replied (always has an answer) that he was headed to the front to tell the lady and pay for it. Okay, I'm thinking - how much can this thing cost?? It's a plastic hand for Pete's sake! So, he and Kinlee go to the lady at the register, and this is what I hear:
Parker: Um, this is broken (handing it to her)
Lady: Oh, that's okay. Thank you for bringing it to me.
Parker: No, you don't understand, I am the one that broke it.
Lady: That's okay.
Parker: I'm going to pay for it.
Lady: No, honey, you don't have to do that.
Nice lady in line to pay: Did you hear that? What honesty! Here you go - here, this is for being so honest!
You see, the lady in line handed him a dollar bill!!! What?! That was exactly the look/expression on Parker's face. You can see him registering very quickly that, "okay, I broke a toy, I brought it to the lady, didn't have to pay for it, and got a dollar! COOL!!" The look on Kinlee's face was just as priceless. You could see her registering, "I wonder what I can break?!" To which I replied to the look and unspoken words, "Don't even think about it." I had to laugh as they journeyed back to the toy section, Parker leaned to me and under his breath said/sang, "I'm going to go break some more stuff!" To which I replied again, "Don't even think about it!"
What a lesson learned for BOTH of us. I felt bad that I was too busy getting on to him for breaking the toy in the first place that I didn't really even focus on the honesty. (I would have eventually gotten there, but as a mom, it wasn't my first reaction). You know, the kid could have just put it back on the shelf and walked away as if he had no idea what had happened to it. Parker's lesson came in the fact that honesty pays off (literally in this case). He did the right thing and it worked for him. I have to believe that lessons were learned for just about everyone around that witnessed the whole incident.
I was beginning to feel really good about our episode until later on in the evening, I hear a song that Parker has made up that went a little something like this: "I got a dollar for breakin' somethin' at G-o-o-d-w-i-l-l!!" I made him turn and look me in the eye, asked "WHY did you get the dollar?" He replied, "For being honest". Okay I felt better, but I can almost promise I heard him whisper as he turned to go/dance away, ".....and for breakin' a toy at G-o-o-d-w-i-l-l....!" Oh well, I tried.....:)
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