5pm can be a fairly stressful time of the day. Three tired kids want to eat. The two big ones react by niggling at each other and winding each other up. They both want to sit on the same chair, neither accepts the other's choice of TV show, etc. The little one reacts by following around at your feet, his two arms sticking straight up in a 'lift me now' gesture while he whines just annoyingly in the background. I decided the other evening that toast would serve the purpose of getting them all off my back long enough to allow me to cook. I made 3 slices, took out a brand new unopened half pound of butter and spread them each a slice and went back to cooking. Silence and happiness from the next room at last. But after quarter of an hour it suddenly struck me - they were too silent. I went through and found Marcel and Charlotte watching the Simpsons happily on the couch but Pudge was still at the table - toast untouched, but silent and happy as he ate his way through handfuls of butter. He had consumed just less than half of the butter. And worse still there were little Pudgy hand prints all over my dry-clean-only green jacket that I had hung over the back of the dining room chair.
I guess I know how to keep him quiet though at least!