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And the house burned down around me

I had the children fed and settled in front of a beloved television show today. So that I might have a few moments of peace and quiet to be able to listen to the first live broadcast of Blog Talk Radio. One of my favorite blogging people, Shannon, of Rocks in My Dryer was being interviewed. I’ve met Shannon in real life. So, she’s not just one of my pretend friends. I just heart her.

At the appointed time, I climbed up on my barstool, with my laptop on the kitchen counter. I reasoned, that I had all 3 children within earshot, and I could shoot an icy cold glare over the counter if they needed correcting. There was peace in the valley.

Shannon’s interview was just wonderful. And y’all. There was blog chatting in the chat room that accompanied the interview.

I think I’m the last person in the free world who has never chatted in a chat room. Even technical difficulties didn’t dampen our fun and frivolity. There was even a little Ethel Merman rendition, courtesy of Karen, who was hosting part of the interview. The part with the technical difficulties. She said she would deny ever doing it. But, there were witnesses, my friend. Yes, there were witnesses.

I coined a new blog catch phrase. Whenever show tunes enter the blogging fray, you’ve just found yourself on Blogway.

I’ll be here all week.

As things began to wind down, I did my perfunctory check of the children. “Where’s Jensen?” Emme looks up at me, “Um. I dunno.”

What can happen. I have baby gates stationed at strategic check points. Door knobs wear baby knob protectors. (That really, only children can maneuver.) Anything spillable is way way up high. Poison control is on speed dial.


A very guilty, “Whaat?” followed.

I look in his room to see him holding a brand new bottle of Eucerin lotion. The really big bottle. The one that costs over $11.00. He had a dollop on his nose. And used it as a hair gel.


If you’ll recall, long ago, the boy was addicted to Neutrogena Lotion. After intensive therapy, and a trip to the Elizabeth Arden Clinic for a little rehab, I thought he was cured of this annoying habit.

As it turned out, he hadn’t ingested the Eucerin. Instead, he used it as an expensive lubricant for all of the Barbie Car wheels, the air purifier, and most importantly, the cheap shag carpet.

Quickly, oh so quickly, I excused myself from the chat and began the clean up. I went through a box of Q-tips, and a half a bottle of Excedrin cleaning lotion out of each little tiny grate of the air purifier.

Evidently, I birthed a monkey. He had pulled his rocking chair over to his bookshelf, and climbed up to reach the forbidden booty which was stashed ON TOP. Please note that the bookshelf is bolted to the wall. Just so you know that I’m not a complete imbecile.

He had to have accomplished this act in record time, because he could not have been out of my sight for more than a couple of minutes. A popular phrase often coined by stupid parents interviewed on the news.

I understand there is to be another blog interview next week. I can’t wait.

I will be making good use of the duct tape.

TO TAPE UP THE LOTION. People. What were you thinking!

On the bright side, those Barbie car wheels have never been more quiet! And Jensen’s hair has never been more manageable. He may be onto something.

23 Responses to And the house burned down around me

  • Well, you know that I’ll never admit that I was the one channeling Ethel, but sadly, it was recorded on the archived session….so I guess there’s no denying it.

    And I’m so sorry about the great lotion debacle…but you tell it like no one else! 🙂 I knew when you said you had to go because he dumped an entire bottle on himself, it was going to be a good one. So glad you didn’t let us down! 🙂

  • I had fun listening in and chatting yesterday! And I almost missed my big OB appt I’ve been looking forward to/dreading for over a week now.


  • It is amazing the trouble our little ones can get into in just a short amount of time.

    Now I need to check out this Blogtalk radio!

  • I came in late to the show, so I missed Karen’s antics…that’s probably worth going back and listening to the podcast :).

    Poor you…mine are old enough not to worry about “that” kind of thing, but I paid my dues over and over and over. And never once did we bolt a bookshelf to the wall, so you’re doing better than me!

    Isn’t it fun having real life flesh and blood faces to attach to so many bloggers now? I can only imagine after attending BlogHer (but there are waaaay more of those attendees that I don’t know!).

  • Oooh, girl, I been there. Once when my twins were 2 they got ahold of a sharpie. My husband and I were both watching them and they still were able to leave their marks on everything, in several different parts of the house. When we moved we were still finding sharpie marks!

  • I was all ready to listen…and then something happened…I don’t remember what. Sorry I missed it!

    I think duct tape will be effective to hold the lotion. And whatever else you need to tape to the ceiling!

  • Maybe Shannon would reimburse you for the bottle since it was her fault you had to ignore the kid.

  • I’m always amazed at how quickly my kids can cook up trouble. If only they could (would?) harness that same energy to clean their rooms… sigh.

  • Jenson strikes again…that kid’s gonna give you blog fodder for decades!!! Ugh…what a mess lotion is when it’s not where it’s supposed to b!

  • Oh dear! I can only imagine the mess. Poor thing!

    It amazes me what kids can do, it’s why our apartment has pink carpet. When it’s supposed to be beige.

    Glad you got it cleaned up without needed anything harder than Excedrin!

  • I swear you need to write a book. You are better than Erma Bombeck. 😉

    “Blogway”, I LOVE it. You should patent that word; get a copyright on it quickly. 😉

  • I’m liking me some “blogway” [smile].

    Good stuff. I’ll need to use that.


  • Oh, I feel your pain. While I was folding laundry this morning, my own monkey dragged a chair over to reach “Mommy’s Chocolate Drawer.” I, of course, did not know this until I came back downstairs and found him, the chair, and the carpet all smeared with chocolate. The worst part was — I couldn’t comfort myself with chocolate, since it was all used up!

  • I am laughing my bucket off here, seriously!! I had a Jensen here….even now when she is 10.5 I still have t call out her name to find out what she is doing when it is really quiet.

  • Eating lotion … again? Very funny.

  • I continue to forward your posts via email to friends and family as you continue to bless me with your wit, humor and intelligence. Geezzz your cool!

    Little sheepish to share this as you are such an amazing writer, but here goes…

    OK, so I finally pushed myself a little bit, getting out of my comfort zone on, “This is what I did today,” sort of blogging. If you have a moment, you might like reading my thoughts on “Pray-paring for 20 somethings.”

    Link: http://sharingnotes.blogspot.com/2008/07/pray-paring-for-20-somethings.html



  • It is truly amazing what can be accomplished by one child in a matter of minutes. I wish I could get things done that quickly. Don’t wory I’ll turn my head while you have the duct tape out!!

  • Oh you poor girl. POOR girl. I birthed a similar monkey. He is now seven, and the mischief (while still ever present) has at least evolved into something a little more live-able.

    And? I heart you too. 😉

  • Eucerine! That’s stuff is like gold but works so well. Around here we only buy the Wal-Mart brand which is much cheaper and actually just as good.

  • I agree with Wendy: I often think of Erma Bombeck when I read these posts about your kids!

    And when you talk about Jensen, I see my future flash before my eyes. My son (not quite 2) opened the bottom drawer of his dresser and used it to climb on top of the dresser. I had already removed all of the lotions and diaper creams from the drawer within his reach and put them on the top shelf. Now I guess I need to move them into the closet with the knob protector on the door. (sigh) At least I have wood floors in his room. 🙂

  • Oh Snap! 1) I missed the interview and 2) Jenson strikes again.

    You know that post about him launching a turd into the tub? Makes sense now as he was well lubed.

    5 bucks says that boy will chew through the tape. Any takers? 🙂

  • Um excuse me, are our children related? Maybe long-lost distant cousins, perhaps?


    (Oh, and ALL our bookshelves are bolted to the walls.)