"Okay, my loves, it's time to wake up." Were pretty much the best words Natasha had ever opened her eyes to.
Rubbing a hand over her face, she felt Clint shift beside her. "Mornin' papa." He yawned.
Steve chuckled, ruffling his hair. "Sleepy monkey, huh?"
Clint looked sheepish as fiddled with the covers. "Me an' Tash stayed up kinda late 'cause we didn't think we'd be droppin' until later."
Natasha pushed herself up, looking intently at Steve. "We were big." She said softly. "Promise."
"Then that's absolutely fine, I'm not gonna start telling you what to do when you're big unless you specifically want me to." The blonde smiled. "Now c'mon, my little rugrats. We've got a fun day that the others can't wait to get started."
Steve stood from the end of the bed and bent down to lift Natasha up and into his arms, resting comfortably at his hip. "Clint, you wanna use the bathroom first?"
"Okay." The boy carefully clambered out from the covers, stopping to press a kiss to his baby's sister's temple he padded to the en-suite.
They tended to let Clint go first because he could handle the shower on his own and nine times out of ten, didn't need any help getting ready in the morning.
Natasha couldn't shower when little; she had such a fear of water going over her head and in her eyes, that it was just a lot easier for them to fill up the bathtub instead.
They heard the shower turn on and Steve headed over to the vanity, picking up Natasha's hairbrush before sitting down on the chair, settling the redhead in his lap so her back was facing him.
Steve and Bucky split the morning tasks equally; always taking two kids each and alternating each day or every other day so that one caregiver never spent more time with a certain little. It worked very well for them and everyone felt like they got equal time with the others.
"Let's brush your hair, hmm?" Steve grinned, bouncing the girl up on his knee as he started to pull the brush through red tangles.
No matter how neat her hair had been when she'd gone to sleep, she always woke with at least one tangle and Steve had learned through experience that trying to brush wet tangled hair did not end well at all.
He was gentle but firm with his movements, humming to Natasha the whole the time. Once he was done, he placed the brush down and ran fingers through her hair.
"You sat so well, baby!" He cooed against her ear.
Natasha burst into giggles at the soft tickling of his breath, turning around so she was facing him. Leaning up, she put her arms around his neck and rested her cheek on his left shoulder.
"My snuggly baby today." Steve murmured, wrapping his arms around her back. "Everything okay, princess?"
Natasha nodded, smooshing her cheek against his shoulder. "Jus' excited."
A lot of kids tended to get hyper and silly when they were excited but they'd come to learn that Natasha could be a little different sometimes. She could get quiet and thoughtful when excited, either because the emotion was too much or she just didn't know how to express it.
"You are? That's good to hear. Today is goin' to be great, Natty. You remember all the things we're gonna do?" Steve asked softly, rubbing a hand up her back.
"Uh..." Natasha nose crinkled for a moment, "waffles, tree an' dec...decor...lights an' stuff, an' cupcakes?" She looked up at him.
"That's right baby, and then tonight we're going to make super special hot chocolate and watch a Christmas film." Steve hummed.
"Really?" Natasha asked quietly, "we gonna do all that?" She looked dubious.
"We're going to try," Steve chuckled, "and if we don't get it all done today, we have tomorrow too. We'll get it all done, don't you worry." He murmured, dropping a kiss to her forehead.
They sat quietly for a moment, just listening to the sounds of the shower shutting off and Clint clattering around the bathroom.
"Daddy?" Natasha asked, not quite looking up at him, eyes downcast.
"Yeah, pumpkin?" Steve smiled.
"Don't want cupcakes." She mumbled, fiddling with her bands in her lap.
"You don't?" Steve brushed a strand of hair from her forehead. "That's okay, what do you want to make instead?"
"Cookies?" She asked timidly. "The spicy ones."
"Of course we can make them, baby. We bought lots of ingredients in case anyone wanted to make something else." Steve smiled. "And by the way, I'm very proud of you for asking, Natty."
A light flush crept over her cheeks and she ducked her head, eyes back on her hands. "Nu uh." She mumbled.
"Yeah huh." Steve murmured right back. "Just a year ago, you wouldn't have asked for cookies, even if you really really didn't want cupcakes."
Natasha sniffled and bit her lip. "Oh." She whispered.
Steve rubbed her back again, rocking the girl in his arms. "You're amazing, Natasha, and we are all so proud of you."
The girl flushed deeper, a small smile pulling up the corners of her lips. "Thanks." She breathed, shyly craning her head up to kiss his cheek.
Steve chuckled, pressing the tip of his finger to her nose. "Of course, silly."
Just then, a waft of steam and Clint wrapped in a towel exited the bathroom. "I'm done." He hopped onto the bed, rubbing another towel over his hair.
"Okay, let's get this baby all ready for the day, hmm?" Steve stood, Natasha on his hip once more as he took her into the bathroom.
Placing her on the closed toilet seat, he rinsed the tub out from Clint's shower before placing the stopper in the bottom and beginning to fill it with warm (but not too hot), water.
"Now, what does my little girl want in her bath today?'' He crept over to her, pressing his fingers under her chin, causing her to giggle and bat at his hand.
"Berry an' bubbles an' boats!" She laughed, a bright smile on her face.
"Then that's what m'lady shall get." Steve winked at her as he grabbed things from cupboards and boxes.
He tipped the toy boats into the water, watching as then sank for a second before breaking the surface.
Next in went some bright red, strawberry smelling bubble bath, and then some more for good measure.
Steve stuck his hand in the water and swished the red liquid around until bubbles began to cover the water.
"Okay! Now we just have to get these footsies," Steve tickled along the bottom of her foot as he returned to where she sat, "and these handsies," he squeezed her fingers, "outta these clothes." He pulled on the bottom of her shirt.
Natasha looked up at him, giggling and red in the face as Steve played. "Okay daddy!"
"Okay? That's my good girl." He leaned in and pressed a kiss to the tip of her nose.
For the next few minutes, Steve tried to get a wriggly Natasha out of her pyjamas, which was no easy feat.
Eventually though, the clothes were thrown in the laundry basket and Steve lifted Natasha up, checking the temperature one last time before lowering the girl into the water.
The pair played for a good fifteen minutes; dragging the boats below the water or racing them all across the tub, and then ending play time with a vicious boat fight where Steve ended up with a very wet shirt for his troubles.
Giggling, Natasha splashed her hands around in the water, sticking her tongue out at her daddy.
Steve could only roll his eyes and laugh too. "Guess daddy has to change his shirt now, huh?"
Natasha batted her eyelids, looking far too innocent. "Guess so."
Shaking his head, Steve gathered the shampoo and conditioner from the side of the bathtub.
"Okay, baby, tip your head back and put your hands over your eyes." Steve murmured, waiting until the girl did both of those things before taking the hand held shower head.
"Here we go." Steve said softly, putting one hand over her forehead, the other running the shower head over Natasha's hair until it was all wet.
His hand on her forehead tended to capture any water before it dripped down into her eyes. On the off chance water still escaped, that was where Natasha covering her face came in.
He made quick work of rubbing in the shampoo, lathering it up before rinsing it out.
Once the shampoo was washed out, he took a small towel and rubbed at her forehead, ears and hairline so they weren't dripping.
"Okay, you can move your hands now." He smiled, pulling a silly face as she took her hands down.
She giggled again, reaching for her Paw Patrol face cloth, running it under the tap and very carefully rubbing it over her face, very mindful to go around the eyes, not over them.
Whilst she did that, Steve ran conditioner through the ends of her hair, leaving it for a couple minutes, before rinsing that out too.
"Nearly done, baba." Steve cooed softly, picking up a separate wash cloth than the one she'd used for her face, quickly wiping up and down her body so she was completely clean.
They had the timings down perfectly; the bath was just beginning to get cold when he lifted Natasha out and onto the bathmat.
Taking her bright red towel, he bundled the girl up in it, tugging the attached hood over her eyes.
"Daddy!" Natasha stomped her foot, lower lip pouting.
Natty trying to look angry rarely worked, she always looked even more adorable instead.
"Okay, okay, daddy's sorry." Steve chuckled, pulling the hood back so she could see. "Let's go get changed, hmm?"
They headed into the bedroom to find Clint still sprawled across the bed in his towel.
"Clint, come on buddy, it's time to get changed." Steve placed Natasha on the end of the bed.
"Do I have to?" Clint rolled over onto his stomach, resting his chin in his hands.
"You can't walk around the tower naked all day," Steve raised an eyebrow, "and you might catch a cold with how the weather's been. Clothes, now, mister."
"Fineee!" Clint rolled his eyes, clearly more grumpy tween than pouty child today.
"Thank you." Steve called after him as the boy headed over to his closet.
"What does the little madame want to wear today, hmm?" Steve pulled open the doors of her closet and stepped aside so she could peer in.
"Red an' shorties!" Natasha clapped her hands.
Steve looked through the clothes, easily deciphering what Natasha wanted. "Which red sweater, the turtleneck, the glittery, or the plain?"
"Turtle!" Natasha grinned.
"Very good choice. Okay, which shortalls? Snowman and snowflake, spider, arrows, froggy, or ducky?" Steve asked.
"Snowman daddy, duh!" Natasha rolled her eyes.
"Ah, because it's nearly Christmas, of course, silly daddy." Steve chuckled, grabbing both items and laying them on the bed.
He looked over to check on Clint, who was halfway into a pair of jeans. "You okay there, kiddo?"
"Fine papa." The boy murmured, getting the jeans up and searching for a shirt.
"Yell if you need some help." Steve murmured before turning back to the closet. He pulled open the drawers next to the wardrobe. "Christmas tights, Natty?"
"Yeah, green!" Natasha hopped off the bed, walking over to another cupboard to rifle through her diapers.
They'd ordered special limited edition holiday ones online and since her outfit was so Christmassy, she had to match it!
As she pulled out a diaper, Steve found the green tights, walking over to the bed. "Clint, I'm just going to go next door to change your sister, okay? I'll just be a minute."
"Okay, papa." Clint murmured and Steve spared another glance at him to make sure he was actually getting ready, before heading the the changing room.
He made quick work of powdering Natasha before getting her into the diaper and the tights whilst she was still laying down.
Once that was done, he popped her on the floor and they got her into the sweater and shortalls. "You warm enough, baby?" Steve asked, taking her hand to lead her back to the bedroom.
"Mm, kinda." She mumbled, shrugging.
"Cold?" Steve let her clamber up onto the chair by the vanity.
"Little." The redhead shrugged again.
"On it!" Clint said, rifling through the drawers before padding over.
He got to his knees, pulling knee high red and white striped socks onto her feet before gently tickling the bottom of her foot.
Natasha giggled and nearly kicked him in the face in return.
"Better?" The boy asked, pushing himself up.
Natasha nodded. "Thanks, Clinty. And fanks daddy."
Clint grinned and ruffled her hair. "I'll meet you guys in the kitchen, maybe I'll even save you some waffles." He teased.
Steve chuckled and Natasha waved her brother off.
"Just a quick brush of your hair and then we can get some yummy waffles, hmm?" Steve picked up the hairbrush from earlier and quickly ran, thankfully tangle free, through her hair.
Natasha picked out two hair elastics (red to match her sweater), and two hair clips; one with a mini Christmas tree and one with a snowman.
Steve secured her hair into two little pigtails, with the hair clips holding any stray hairs back from her face.
"Okay, my little Christmas baby is ready for the day!" Steve lifted the girl up onto his hip, "and she looks ever so pretty today." He kissed her cheek.
Natasha flushed, one hand curling around his neck. "Pretty daddy." She whispered.
"Oh, is daddy pretty too? Well thank you, princess." Steve beamed, swiping a couple holiday themed pacifiers from the vanity (one snowflakes themed and one with a gingerbread person on).
"Ready for a fun day, little one?" Steve bounced the girl a few times.
"Waffles!" Natasha proclaimed, clapping her hands.
"Yes, darling," Steve chuckled, "waffles."