That’s so winning.

The youngest fella in the household gets the short end of the stick a lot. Little things, such as when he walks around with a ball in his hand and his older brother walks by and for no apparent reason (other than he can), bro knocks the ball out of his hand and to the ground – well that stuff happens all of the time.

As it should.

Because he’s low man on the totem pole.

Holden, like a lot of first-born type kiddos (he is another first-in-birth-order since there is 14+ years in between him and Nick), would have fallen apart if that would have happened to him. Cries of “No fair!” and “That hurts my feelings!!” would have wailed through the house and huge alligator tears would have spilled to the floor. And I would have hovered over to him and rescued him out of that, like so many first-time mommas trying to figure out this parenting thing.

Nowadays though, that hierarchy of brotherhood is so second nature that many things go “un-hovered” and almost unnoticed, and the Ewe-Dawg gives nearly as good as he gets. As size moves more on his side, things are gonna get a heckuva lot more interesting around here. I think that I’ll teach them to start putting aside part of their allowance for a “Stuff I Broke on Accident” fund…

All of this to say, the little guys took over the big guys’ play space the other day. It was glorious.

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Battle cries permeated the soft stillness of snow covered everything, and I guarded this precious space as the younger boys played, unlimited, unrestrained, and best of all and for the first time, tall enough to catch and hit the tetherball.

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And the “I Win!” goal post arms came out. A lot.

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It wasn’t a game that was fast paced or furious in terms of speed…but it was fantastic.

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And of course at every turn, my non-competitive boy yelled…

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And then he tried to break my baby tree and I grounded him forever.