I do believe a definite shift does take place when the frustration of a limited vocabulary begins to overlap with the discovery of free will... I see this happen with Braedon every day. Lucky for me, hilarity often ensues.
There was no way I could repremand Braedon for this particular incident, because he had actually ASKED me if he could do it... and I said yes. It went something like this:
"Baedon? Mom, color please."
"You want me to color with you, Braedon?"
"NO..." now he is pointing at himself, then at his feet. "BAEDON, Mom. Please...?"
He was TRYING to tell me that HE wanted to be "Mom" by painting his toes. He was even saying please!
"Sure," I said, sidetracked by the mess of a diaper Eli had produced.
Lesson learned? LISTEN to the kid. Very. Closely.
You know? He didn't do a half-bad job! The carpet came out unscathed too! I am not sure if that is a good thing or a bad thing. :p