April 02, 2008 07:58 PM by Lisa Stauber
Tonight’s Supernanny continues this season’s ‘Twins’ theme. Leslie and Tony Addis have four children: twins Jonah and Jonathon are six, daughter Eden is almost five, and Elijah is two. The family suffered a tragedy last year when Leslie’s dad was killed in a boating accident ‘ in front of the children. Now Charity, Leslie’s mom, lives with them too.
Observation begins and the children all start off with a bang, pitching fits and throwing tantrums. Eden cries, whines, and stomps for over an hour while Tony tries to get her to brush her teeth.
Elijah gets tired and makes sure everyone knows he needs a nap. Leslie hands him off to her mom, who wheedles and cajoles him to kiss pictures of Pappy, his late grandfather, while bribing him with candy.
Supernanny Jo Frost is shocked to find out the boys still act like babies, having their mother wipe their bottoms and still using sippy cups at age 6. Later, during craft time, Leslie makes a mistake with a sticker and spends the next hour begging her children to give it back, or to compromise. She’s afraid one of them won’t be happy with what she decides. Supernanny decides Leslie needs to grow up.
The Parent’s Meeting includes Grandma Charity. ‘You all are going through the grieving process,’ Jo says. ‘If Grandma gives Elijah candy because Grandma can, let it be for that.’ The photo kissing for a sweet reward has got to go. Charity tearfully agrees. Supernanny also points out that Eden has been getting her way for a long time, and that needs to stop. She tells Leslie to let her children act their age. ‘They’re more than capable,’ Supernanny says.
Teaching begins and Supernanny immediately tells Grandma to go find something fun to do. Leslie has been using her mom as a crutch, so that she won’t have to grow up and be the mom.
Next step? Bottom Wiping 101. ‘Do you know how many homes I’ve been in, in America, where the children don’t know how to wipe their butts?’ Jo ponders. ‘Quite interesting.’ Supernanny coaches Leslie through the door and Eden seems to catch on pretty quick. The boys are also finally given regular cups, much to their delight.
‘Dinner turned out to be a complete disaster,’ Jo says. Eden and Jonathon stubbornly refuse to eat their carrots, but Mom finally has a backbone and doesn’t give in. Eventually, Jonathon chokes them down, but Eden holds out. Mom sends her to bed after two hours.
Jo knows that children handle death differently than adults, and gives each child a treasure box to put special things in that remind them of their grandfather. Then, the children can revisit their memories on their own time, and grieve when they are ready. One of the twins fills up his box with cars. It turns out that Pappy was passionate about the Indy 500, and even worked for a tire company that supplied the racers. Leslie has many fond memories of being at the race track with her dad.
This episode was not very typical. The children didn’t seem to be a big problem, and Supernanny spent most of her time with Mom and Dad. She has a serious talk with them about Pappy. ‘I don’t think I’m in mourning for myself. I grieve for my kids.’ Tony says. Jo encourages him to open up to Leslie and assures him it’s okay to be sad at losing a good friend and father in law. She sets them up on a date, and Mom and Dad go take dancing lessons. Jo tells Tony and Leslie to do something fun with the kids as well.
The Tip of the Week is a way to get your kids to give up their ratty old sippy cups. Supernanny recommends buying new plastic cups and letting the kids decorate them. Wonder how those foam stickers are going to hold up in the dishwasher?
Three days later, Jo is back. She reviews some of the footage. Mom managed to get the kids outside for a while, but Eden fell down and they all piled back inside ‘ seven minutes after going out! There’s also another meltdown at the dinner table.
Jo takes matters into her own hands and makes the parents take children out to a restaurant for dinner. The kids are well-behaved ‘ nothing to see here!
As a final surprise, Supernanny again takes care of the grown-ups, leaving a note telling Leslie and her mom to go to the race track for a special memorial. Marco Andretti arrives, and presents them with a plaque remembering Pappy for his work at the races. It’s a bittersweet moment, but seems to help the ladies remember their husband and father.
‘She’s very good at what she does. She has a gift for it,’ Tony says when it’s all over. Yes, Supernanny is the gift that just keeps on giving!
Photo courtesy ABC