When the kids were little the SIL had this annoying thing where she tried to give them the biggest, loudest and most obnoxious gifts. We had a (maybe) 600 square foot apartment and she gave 1 year old Matt a ride on toy train whose tracks could only be placed out in the living area when we pushed the couch into the eating area. That was so fun.
When Evan turned two we were already living in a house in stepford and she gave him one of those chargeable little kid cars to drive around in the yard. Those cars are for 3 and up, but Evan took one look at it and had to have it. So I charged it up thinking maybe I would let him simply sit in it. Evan would have none of just sitting. I let him drive to see what would happen. I would run by the side of the car and grab onto the wheel to help him avoid crashing into the tree which was right into the center of the yard. He had a blast, me, not so much. Until I realized that if every time he went in that direction if he was heading directly for the tree he must be steering the car towards the tree on purpose, so one time I didn't run along side the car poised to grab the wheel and steer my kid into safety to see what would happen and sure enough Evan headed straight for the tree and at the last minute he yanked the wheel, missed the tree, and rode on laughing his little head off.
The signs were there from the beginning.