The time was 4:36 p.m.  Having accomplished all my chores for the day and after reading aloud all 37 books the girls brought home from the library today (some of them twice), I felt I had earned a short break before starting supper.  Since we recently acquired bunk beds over the weekend, and since any new household items automatically becomes a plaything until the novelty wears off, I mentioned that the girls might like to go play "Castle" using their new bunk beds.  To facilitate the experience, I even pulled out some sparkly pink curtains that I intend to permanently fasten in some way around their beds.  I tucked the curtains temporarily beneath the top mattress and allowed them to hang down around the bottom mattress to form a boudoir worthy of a princess (or two) in the bottom bunk.

With the two girls happily exclaiming over their new castle, I felt it was now safe to gather a throw pillow or two and stretch out on the couch in the living room for ten minutes of peace before starting supper.

It was not safe to do so.

Mercy came prancing into the living room as though she were flying.  "I'm Suuuuperhero Merrrrrcy!" she announced and struck a Mighty Mouse pose -- chin up, shoulders back, chest out, hands on hips -- near my pillowed head.

My eyes had not even had time to close.  "Mmm, hi, Superhero Mercy," I greeted her quietly.

"Hi, Mommy!  Our princess curtains fell down!"


"And I am Suuuuuuperhero Merrrrrcy!"

Aha.  "That means you can fix it, Superhero Mercy."

In a cartoon announcer voice she answered, "Yes!  I can!  With the help of...  SuuuuuuuperMommy!"

When did she get old enough for this stuff?