I found child A’s 100% spelling test in the toilet and a very strange conversation ensued. Who did this?
Who knew about this?
Child B only knew a little.
Why did they do this?
They didn’t. Child B had balanced the test very carefully so that someone else would knock it in. Whoever did it should get in trouble, but they don’t know who that is. When Child B left the test was not in the toilet.
Girl Two is engaged in an “ing,” contest. The idea did not excite me. I envisioned my six year old chained to a chair wailing while I begged her to write down a fourth word ending in ing. Either I misjudged based on visions of a related child, an alien has invaded her body, or her teacher knew something I didn’t about ing words. Girl two has sat enthralled and almost dizzy with excitement writing ing words on three separate occasions. Her biggest worry when we left for skiing on the weekend was that she would miss on times to write more words.
I was invited for Lego worlds expo by my youngest three. The designated explainer gave a long and detailed review of the intricate worlds. I thanked them and stood to leave. The kids laughed. That was just one person’s part, they said. I settled back in and tried to concentrate on all the plots and sub-plots. I stood again when the third explainer finished.
Thanks a lot for coming, said one.
She can’t go yet, said another. Remember about the test?
The Mom-is-tested-on-retention-of-Lego-villain-names did not seem like it could be fun but I was assured it was the best part. There were at least fifteen villains. There had been no advance warning so that I could sift out name information from discussions of battles, special powers, or castle fortifications. I failed the first time. They laughed if I called Banana, Asparagus, or Skeleton Dude, Donkey. They took turns giving me clues. I took the test a second time and passed. Somehow by the end it really was a lot of fun.
The Optimist is all legs and feet right now. He is happy at school but steps gingerly across the ice of his social world worried it will break with the weight of oddities thrust upon him by his parents. He punishes us with music played loudly on the piano. I stop him when I need to hear myself think, but there are worse ways to lose. My rattled brain remembers myself in another life doing the same thing. He’s on track to become a better musician than me. That makes me happy and keeps me from moving the piano to the garage.
Me, fretting about the particulars
In August, friends of ours are staying in our house while we’re away. We haven’t seen them for a few years. In fact, they’ve never been to County Road 21. Their coming was an idea followed by a possibility, which is now a plan. This has me thinking that some information is in order.
Dear Cindy and Dave,
We’re glad you are coming and hope you have a great time here. A few things to mention …
1. Every bug on the property has been bred to squeeze through the holes in the screen. If you don’t open the windows at night, you will be found medium to well done in the morning, but we don’t advise windows open and lights on at the same time.
2. The 2nd sink does not drain properly if there is water in the 1st sink. We don’t know why.
3. half the time you run a load of wash, the washer emits a most unpleasant odor. Everything that can be taken apart and cleaned has been. The clothes come out smelling ok, which does not make sense, but since it’s true, we keep going.
4. The kittens are friendly but we advise socks. Toes make them crazy.
5. If you take a walk through the pasture and look at the lambs they will attack you, but only long enough to find out if you’re packing a bottle. Then they’ll offer some loud rebukes and high tail it out of there. Since you won’t be packing, don’t envision a lot of petting.
6. If you find something that looks like a lamb’s tail, it probably is. Our breed has long tails and a certain kind of fly tortures them by laying eggs underneath it if you leave it on. We follow the conventional wisdom and rubber band the tails when the lambs are a few days old. Eventually, the tails fall off and can be found in fields or hidden in odd spots in the house. Most recently, I attended a play at Girl one’s school, where I discovered her generous spirit in donating a real tail to be safety pinned on to the girl dressed up as a sheep.
8. The TV only has an antenna, no satellite or cable. We get about thirty channels, except for when it rains a lot or storms. Then we get three or four. The internet is very slow at night. We don’t know why. Cell phone coverage is also moody and weather related.
9. If you are sitting in the bathroom downstairs and you hear the rush of water in the pipes from the toilet flushing upstairs, you have about five seconds to move before some very energetic bubbling begins below you. On a good day, you get a mild spray (think bidet). On a bad day, think cold, not necessarily clean depending on where you are in your process, jacuzzi start up.
Hopefully that covers it. Welcome to our home.