Because it was school holidays, our nearest major shopping centre was providing children's entertainment. I never have any clue as to what is on and usually it's too crowded and Elijah isn't interested enough to bother trying to get a good vantage point. This time, there was a free magic show and a face-painting service along side, for a gold coin donation. Before the magic show started, there was a big line for face painting. I let Elijah see what they were doing and asked him if he wanted to get his face painted. He gave an emphatic, "No."
We went off to the bank and the bakery, then we swung past where the action was for another go. Elijah wasn't much interested in the magic show, but now the show was on, there was nobody getting their face painted - all the kids were watching the show. I asked Elijah again if he wanted his face painted. "No," was his answer. I tried a different tack.
"Elijah, would you like the lady to turn you into something else? Maybe a bear or a dog or a cat or a spider..."
"Want to be a dog!"
"OK, let's go and let the lady paint your face so you can be a dog."
He eagerly climbed up onto the chair and straight away checked out the paints. He decided he wanted to be a yellow dog. It took him a little while to get the idea of keeping his head still, but then he let the artist do her work. (This photo was taken with my mobile phone under fluorescent light, which is why the colour is so washed out and the focus dodgy.)
He admired the finished product. "Elijah is a yellow dog!"
As we walked through the centre, he proudly told me, "You got your face painted." (The concept of "I", "me" and "my" isn't clear as yet.) He started to call himself "Puppy" and insisted I do too.
This went on for the rest of the day. If I wanted Elijah to do something, I had to ask Puppy to do it. Puppy would oblige with a sweet little, "Woof!" Every now and then, he would remind me that, "You got your face painted!"
I took some photos at home with the DSLR to share the finished product with our readers (and Daddy, who missed out on the fun). In case you're wondering, the orange circle is a sticker the firemen (who were selling their calendar in the centre that day) gave him and the shirt says: It's not easy being this cute.
He definitely makes a very cute yellow dog.