Shannon had to go off to an emergency meeting to deal with the Big Ugly Mess tonight, so I had to handle the bedtime routine by myself. I was girded for battle, expecting at least as much trouble as last night (i.e., Vivi up for an hour past her 7:15 bedtime, Julia up until nine). Perhaps because I psyched the universe out, none of that came to pass. After an easy bathtime and some hilarious playing (the capper: Vivi, clad only in her diaper, putting on a pair of dress-up fairy wings and parading around, flapping her arms madly), they went off to bed with no meltdowns or tears or even fussing. Vivi went to sleep after just a few minutes of desultory chatter, and Julia fell asleep right away. At around 8:15, I moved Julia from the guest room bed - where she still has to fall asleep (or at least lie down quietly) - to her own bed.
As soon as I got back downstairs, I started to hear Julia snuffling and snorting. After a few minutes, she called for me, very quietly. Up I went to her room. She said her nose was running, which I surmised from the sounds and from the fact that my allergies were acting up, too. I helped her blow her nose and went back downstairs. I'd barely sat down when she called for me again, more urgently. Back in her darkened room, I leaned down to ask, "What's wrong?" She said, "My finger is covered with snot!" and then proved it by sticking her index finger into my hand, clearly expecting that my hand had been transformed into wad of Kleenex. It was, however, not a blot for snot, so I had to just kiss her on the head, tell her to go to sleep, and then sprint to the bathroom for some actual Kleenex.