[late last evening, Kavya falls down, much wailing]It is so rare that mama triumphs, but it is so sweet.
Me: What happened?
Kavya: [through tears] I slipped on Daddy's shoes and fell down. [pointing down to where Kev left his shoes, at the foot of his chair]
Me: Oh, that's too bad, sweetie. That's just something Daddy does.
[Now, I'll grant you, that was mildly snarky on my part. But it was said in a loving and affectionate tone, even though it really does drive me right around the bend that Kevin never puts his shoes away by the front door. I pick them up every damn day and put them away.]
Kavya: [indignantly and firmly] Daddy, you should put your shoes away, so I don't slip on them. [still hiccoughing tears in between words]
Kevin: [laughs] Okay, Kavya. [picks up shoes and tucks them behind chair]
Kavya: [she is not fooled; now that she is aware of the problem, she's determined that it be fixed properly] Daddy, you should put your shoes over there, where the shoes go.
Kevin: [attempts to deflect] Kavya, where are your shoes? Did you put them away?
Kavya: [realizing that she is not entirely without fault here, and bravely owning up to her crime] No. I will put them away. [climbs off the couch, picks up her shoes, and puts them away properly] Daddy, you should put your shoes away!
[by this point, I am laughing so hard that my stomach hurts, but at the same time, I'm trying to laugh silently, so that Kavya doesn't notice. Because that might undermine the lesson. Laughing silently is hard!]
Kevin: [sighs and starts getting up to move his shoes] Okay, Kavya.
Kavya: [driving the lesson home] You should never ever leave them out again. You should always put them away.
Kevin: [who is helpless in the face of his darling daughter] Yes, Kavya.
Not that I expect this will last more than a day...