It's bloody Brigadoon.
Only instead of sleeping for 100 years, my home has slept for 7 years, my son is 12 and my daughter is 9. The reason I know this is we have entered The Bicker Zone.
"Mom! Squishy is touching my Red Sox bat and she won't give it back to me!"
"Go Red Sox bah MINE Go Red Sox bah MINE!!!!" (Everything that has the Sox logo on it is now known as Go Red Sox. As in, Go Red Sox jammies, Go Red Sox hat, etc. She was only 10 months old when they won the Series, but it must have made an impression. I digress...)
"Mom, she's touching my new remote control Dinosaur and she didn't ask me! She's supposed to ask me when she wants to use something."
Me, intervening, "Squishy, ask CP if you can use his remote control Dinosaur."
Squishy, "I ude moe conto dineso?"
CP: "No! It's mine!"
This level of quibbling drives me bonkers, and I know I am only at the beginning. I never thought they'd bicker like this at this age. They're like a mini-Estelle and Frank Costanza, without the New York accents.
Then they fake me out, because just this morning I came into the living room, and they're cuddled up on the couch, playing, giggling and giving each other big loving smoochies and hugs. but that lasts for five minutes, then it's back to that's mine and you can't have it.
Also, the volume of my sweet, precious daughter's voice? Has suddenly RISEN DRAMATICALLY.
As in, "MOMMY. YOU SEE TWO DOLLIES, MOMMY? YOU SEE TWO DOLLIES? FUNNY DOLLIES, MOMMY. FUNNY."
I'm thinking of putting noise-cancelling headphones on my wish list. I will wear them, smile and nod when she talks.
But then, she crawls into bed with me, puts her sweet, smooth arms around my neck, and says, "New kiss, Mommy. New hug too." And my boy cuddles up in the crook of my arm and says, "Mom, you're so warm and toasty in bed. Like my blankets when I wake up in the morning. So warm."
So I guess I'll take the Costanzas if I can occasionally also see Rob and Laura Petrie come out. You've gotta have some balance.