(Strip Number 5143, Original Publication Date, 1 June 1989)
Panel 1: As Elly carries the comically over-sized basket of laundry she uses as a sort of badge of office, she notices Liz doing something and asks what that is. Liz says that she's drawin'a pitcher.
Panel 2: Said picture is about a witch who gots two kids an'she's real mean, an'won't let them do anything. Upon having that explained to her, Elly says "I see."
Panel 3: As Liz continues to draw her story, she does so bluissfully unaware of the effect it's having on anyone because what Mike said yesterday has nothing to do with her school assignment or whatever she's doing. This means that she's going to be baffled as to why the punishment gets over with in the next few minutes.
Panel 4: Elly invites legal action by Lucille Ball's lawyers by crying like Lucy Ricardo because her children HATE her and think she's MEAN and CRAZY and has a BAD TEMPER and think that she loves every minute of being a shitty parent.
Summary: This, I should think, is Elly being 'firm'. She doesn't seem to mind making Mike's life inconvenient but it bothers her a lot when the compliant one doesn't like complying. This allows her to pose as the victim of circumstance who hopes her children will one day thank her for her capricious, high-handed and hypocritical stupidity and her volatile temper.