It is a truth universally acknowledged that when all else fails, the promise of food will undermine a man's firm resolve.
Women exposed this many years ago. I believe Eve first demonstrated the theory to rancorous applause in the Garden.
And though as mothers we don't set out to teach our daughters the verity of this theology, even the littlest of girls inherently understand it's power.
Girl demonstrated this to my profound awe and amusement on Monday morning as she attempted to gain her brothers' compliance to play Tea Party.
It would have been a difficult win either way as neither of the boys is particularly fond of staging a soiree with Girl's dollies, and on this day they were much more interested in chasing one another around the house with Nerf guns - a happier inducement by far.
Girl attempted begging. Bribery. Threats. Tears. Extortion. Promises. Pleas. Nothing chinked their firm resolve.
Until she brought out: the cookies.
I had purchased a box of cookie-shaped cold cereal for her occasional use in tea parties and she admirably put them to good use. The boys animatedly set up the blanket and arranged the stuffed animals around themselves, and even gladly submitted to Girl's bossy 'rules' about proper behavior. And all for the sake of a cookie.
I am sure Girl will remember this tactic and put it to good use in the future.