A couple days ago, I was talking to a friend on the phone while cleaning my bathroom. I always talk on the phone while cleaning. By the time I finish my conversation and hang up, my house is clean and I don't even remember doing any of it! It's awesome! It's a great, virtually painless way to tackle yucky chores.
After my bathroom was all sparkly, I walked through the kitchen to hang up the phone. As I was saying goodbye to my friend, I stopped in my tracks as Clay and Brooklyn, dripping wet and wrapped in towels, came walking out of the other bathroom.
"Bye Jules. Talk to you la..what the??? What are you two doing?" I yelled in my friend's ear on the other end of the line. Of course, Clay and Brooklyn were up to no good. Duh. I should've known this from the start. They were quiet. The whole time I was cleaning the bathroom, I didn't suffer a single interruption from them. Obviously that meant they were doing something like trying to scale the garage, or removing the tires from my van, or lighting the yard on fire, or painting the windows with crayon and smooshed cheese. (In case you're wondering, it's especially hard to get smooshed American cheese off windows.)
Really it's a toss-up. You can have a quiet conversation while the kids
"So I was talking to my lawyer and he said hold on a minute. Get down from there right now! What are you thinking? Do you want to fall and crack your head open? I'm sorry, Julie, so I was talking to my lawyer and he said that no, I can't paint your nails right now. I know you want nail polish, but I'm on the phone. I'll paint them when I get off. Sorry, Julie. I swear this kid wants her nails painted every day. Every single day! She has so many layers of nail polish that her nails are like 2 1/2 inches thick! I have no idea what I was saying. Oh yeah! My lawyer told me that he'll set up a court date for Clayton, I told you to put on a jacket if you're going outside. It's cold out there! Yes, it is. Yes, it is. Yes, it is cold! Yes, it is! Fine, don't put on a jacket. Suit yourself. But then you have to stay inside. Sure, I'll put on a movie for you. Hang on, Julie. I'm sorry. OK, there we go. Now, they're all set with a movie. So, what's going on with the job situation? Oh, we were talking about the court date? Oh yeah! Well, I told him yes, I can get you some chocolate milk. Where's your cup? Sorry Julie. Hang on a sec."
OK, I know some of you are probably thinking that conversation is horribly rude and permeated with bad manners. And yes, if you're on the phone with the doctor's office, or a business call, or your mother, you don't want to have conversations like this. However, if you're on the phone with your girlfriend who is having an identical conversation with you because her boys are beating each other over the head with golf clubs and running out into the street as she's talking to you, then I say, go ahead! It's understood. It's mutually acceptable. It's what stay-at-home moms do. If we waited for an opportunity to talk in peace and quiet, we never talk to anyone! We'd sit at home all day with no outlet until we snapped and started having conversations with sock puppets named Argyle and Bobby.
Anyway, I digress. I wasn't having the aforementioned conversation so I should have been aware that my kids were up to no good. Back to the dripping wet kids emerging from the bathroom.
"What are you guys doing?"
"We just took a shower, Mom."
"I can see that. Why?"
We just felt like it."
"Uh huh," I said as I noticed the dirty footprints covering the floor, leading from the backdoor, through the kitchen, down the hallway, and into the bathroom. I followed the footprints. At the bathroom door, I stopped in my tracks. There at my feet was a mound of discarded clothing that was soaked in water and covered in sand.
Hmmm, this is a new one, I thought to myself. "What on earth did you two do?" I asked in wonder.
"We made a beach."
"A beach, huh? In the sand box?"
"Yeah, we filled it with water and went swimming like the ocean!" Clay beamed, proud of his clever idea.
I began thinking that perhaps those two watch a little too much Phineas and Ferb. Where was Candace when I needed her?
"That's just..." I floundered for words. "That's great," I said with
Every week, I find myself instituting rules I never thought I'd need. This week it was the No Swimming in the Sand Box rule. Now if only my kids' messes disappeared as easily as Phineas and Ferb's...
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