I have two kids, four and a half years apart. We were at a family dinner recently. My youngest was doing something to distract us from the fact that she was not eating her dinner. My brother remarked that she has a strong sense of humor, different from my oldest ... who he said is very intense.
Fast forward two weeks and my parents are getting ready for a trip to Europe. My mother has already called me 17 times to tell me where money is hidden, where her jewelry is stashed and where to find the key to the filing cabinet. I've already signed the form to access their safety deposit box in case of emergency. I have the key, and the name of their insurance broker. My father has given me explicit instructions in person and e-mail as to how to water the garden. Where is my brother? At his in-laws' lake house for a week. Has he been briefed on the depressing details of their life insurance? I think not. Will he be giving up hours of his work days next week to make sure that the tomatoes don't die on the vine? I think not. Who is the oldest? Me.
The next time our playroom needs to be cleaned up, I think I'll give the job to my youngest.