After thanksgiving dinner, I sat down with my niece, Sarah, to draw pictures. We drew different animals: elephants, giraffes, ostriches, and bunnies wearing stripey shirts. When Sarah drew her bunny, she drew a thought bubble over its head and asked me what bunnies think about.
Sarah: No... Money!
Matt: That's your fault you know.
A couple of visits back, we drew pictures together (as we often do). She drew me a picture of home with everyone next to it. I drew her a picture of a bunny in a carrot-mobile zooming through the desert on the way to Las Vegas with dreams of jackpot wins in his head. (Yup, a thought bubble of a slot machine and money.)
Matt thinks I should edit myself down more when I'm around the kids. I think that means drawing flowers and hearts, instead of a giant mutant bunny roaming the city after a nuclear power plant meltdown. My brother and sister-in-law are more amused than anything else. If my brother asked, I would stop and color inside of the lines instead of drawing tiny people fleeing away from the alligator in her coloring book.
I often forget that I have an influence on her, even in the details of a drawing. Matt has doubts whether that is a postive influence or not, but little does he know that I'm biding my time until I can teach her more practical things, like playing poker. :)