When Mae was a baby her older brothers ADORED her. They would argue over whose turn it was to hold her and would beg me to not nurse her just once so they could bottle feed her. They even got in the bassinet with her to cuddle her to sleep! At this time John was four Chris was two and Mae was just an infant. One day I had put Mae down for a nap and a movie in for the boys so I could take a shower. I came out of the shower to find John in the bassinet with Mae. He had his finger in her mouth! “John! Why are you putting your finger in Mae’s mouth?” I asked. “Mommy she was crying. She needs something to suck on and she didn’t want her paci. She wants MY finger!”.
Radar and I have a king sized bed. Last night, we were snuggling in bed and he rolls away and I hear “Oh shit!” Thud! He had rolled off the edge of the bed!! I roll to the edge and look down on him. “Radar are you ok?” I ask. “Yes”, he replies “What are you doing down there?” I asked as I started to giggle. “The bed ended. We need a bigger bed”.
Then he gets up and gets back in the bed. I’m laughing hysterically at this point and he starts recounting his fall. “The cartoons lied. You fall even if you don’t know you’re over the edge. “. “Our bed is too tall. I fell ten feet.”. “I had time to think about it before I landed. Like, will I live? Will I die? What should I make for breakfast?” With each comment I laugh harder! Then he says “You’re enjoying this too much”
Let me preface this story with, I live in the country folks.
So I was in my bathroom this morning when I saw something MOVING in the bathtub! Now I was the only member of my household who was awake, a bit alarmed I turned my attention to the movement and saw a small brown mouse jumping up and down IN THE BATHTUB. I stopped brushing my teeth and ran to get the cat. By the time I came back with the cat, the mouse was nowhere to be seen. The cat was decidedly UNIMPRESSED.
A washcloth had fallen into the tub and I thought I saw it move. So I was fairly certain that the mouse was hiding under the washcloth. I couldn’t reach the washcloth from outside the bathtub and there was no stick in the room. If I left the room in search of a stick the cat would leave too. So I gathered up my courage, got INTO the bathtub and with just two fingers, lifted the washcloth. The mouse ran out from underneath TOWARDS me! Folks, I’m not sure how I moved so fast but in an instant I was magically out of the bathtub and had the cat in my hands! I put her in the bathtub and she lazily looked at the mouse. Then she looked at me like, “What’s the big deal mom? It’s just a mouse.” “Lyla, CATCH IT!!” I said to the cat.
Just then the mouse moved. Now it’s a toy! The cat went into hyper-focus and chased the mouse all around the bathtub before catching it by its tail. The poor mouse squeaked in terror as it wiggled with all it’s might to get free! A few seconds later, it plopped onto the bathtub floor and started to run. Now the cat is not playing. Lightening fast, she caught the mouse by the body this time and proceeded to jump out of the tub, mouse in mouth. “Whew” I think, “Crisis averted.”.
The mouse squeaked again and the stupid cat LET IT GO!! The mouse ran and got behind the epsom salt where the cat looked for it for a NANOSECOND before walking away. Thoroughly disgusted with my cat, I move the epsom salt into the tub and move the cat to where she can see the mouse. The cat just pawed at the mouse. Tap, tap, tap, finally the mouse moves. It ran to the other side of the bathroom and hid behind the plunger and toilet bowl cleaner. The cat, interest renewed, started hunting it. Her ears twitch, her tail slashes as she laser focuses on her prey. Pounce! She missed and the mouse ran under the sink. The cat can’t fit under the sink so she started pawing at the mouse again. The mouse, knowing it had won stayed put. The cat lost interest again.
So I just left the bathroom and closed the cat in there with the mouse. Hopefully her primal instinct will kick in and she’ll catch the fuzzy intruder.
When John was about seven we decided to do a project where we reassembled chicken bones to create a skeleton like they do with dinosaur bones! According to the article I read, they really do resemble dinosaur skeletons! So off we went in search of a whole chicken, feet and head attached. Do you know how hard this is to find in America? I spent hours on the phone and finally found one. We had to go all the way across town to the Asian market to get it! Once we had the bird we had to cook it until all the meat fell off. I put the whole thing in the biggest pot I had. About halfway through cooking, the chicken STRETCHED IT LEGS UP AND WRAPPED ITS FEET AROUND THE EDGE OF THE POT! We were all very surprised to see this!
After we separated the meat from the bones we had to bleach the bones to make them look right. Then came the painstaking process of reassembling the bones! The results were quite satisfying.
When Chris was battling cancer, we were in the hospital yet again. He had been sick from the chemo. The nurse was finally able to bring him some medicine to help settle his stomach. As soon as he was able, he wiped his mouth, brushed his teeth, and put on this crazy wig and nose! He turned to me and gave me a beautiful smile. Then said, “Well mom it’s time to go make some smiles! So many kids here feel terrible, if I can make them smile for just a moment it won’t be a wasted day.”. I asked if I could go with him and he handed me a nose of my own! We went from room to room knocking on doors and making kids laugh at how silly we looked – and acted! It was the most fun I ever had in a hospital! I’m so thankful to my kiddo! In just seeing him do his heart’s work, he made MY day!
The first year of our marriage, Radar and I lived very close to his best friend Umpa. We spent nearly every day that we weren’t at work together. When we got bored, we would plan a trip! We hung a map up on the wall and threw darts at it. The first dart to stick in the map determined our destination! That year on New Year’s Day we played this game. The dart landed on Memphis Tennessee! Whoop! We’re going to Memphis!! We gathered the few supplies we needed and hit the road! Upon crossing the Tennessee border we stopped at the visitors center to decide what there was to do in Memphis. (This was before the internet was easily accessible on cell phones). We decided we wanted to visit Graceland, drive over to the Jack Daniel’s distillery, have lunch and look at the Mississippi river. Maybe take a boat across the river. Alas, since it was New Year’s Day Graceland was closed as was the distillery and the boat rides across the Mississippi. We had lunch at the Hard Rock Cafe and had the worst service of our lives! On the way out a drunk man followed us to the car trying to convince us to buy him a drink. Umpa and Radar walked on either side of me to protect me! We looked at the Mississippi and headed home. We laugh now that we spent all day in the car to have a mediocre lunch and look at a river!
When Radar and I had been married just a few months, a kitten wondered up to our apartment. Radar told me, “Do not feed it outside”. He was the cutest little guy but I’d been told not to feed it….OUTSIDE. So I took him INSIDE to feed him! When Radar got home the kitten was sitting on the kitchen floor eating kibble! Radar said, “What’s this?” I replied, “It’s a kitten!”. We named it Boux (pronounced Boo) and he grew very rapidly. When Boux was 3 months old I took him to the vet. The vet thought he was a year old until he looked at his teeth. He said Boux was half ocelot! He got to be about twenty five pounds!
Boux was more like a dog in behavior than a cat. He would come when called, get down when told to, and was an amazing hunter! When we moved into a house he LOVED to catch the birds! He was so good at it that the neighbors complained that he was catching too many birds and wanted me to stop him! Now how was I supposed to do that??
When Chris was a baby, we took a family trip about four hours drive from where we lived. On the way back home, he was exhausted but refused to go to sleep. Instead he just screamed! We pulled over and checked him over to make sure he was not physically hurting. He was fine. I nursed him to try to pacify him. As soon as we put him back in his car seat he started screaming again. He was just sick of his car seat and we had three hours to go! Radar and I sighed and put in a CD. It just happened to be Queen. Chris screamed. Then “We Will Rock You” played. Chris got quiet. I looked in the back seat thinking he had finally gone to sleep. He was happily kicking his feet!! The song ended and he began to scream! We went back to “We Will Rick You.”. Chris got quiet. It ended and again he screamed! We listened to “We Will Rock You” for the next three hours because it was better than listening to a baby scream!
When Chris was in first grade we were doing public school. Every day during that year, when I went to pick him up from school I asked him “How was your day?”. One day he replied, “It was a disaster-piece!”. ” What happened?” I asked. “Well, I didn’t have time to play with all of my girlfriends on the playground and now some of them are mad at me!” he replied. “I see. Why do you have so many girlfriends?” “I don’t know mom. All I do is pull out their chair, hold the door for them and sharpen their pencils.”
The other day John and Andrew went outside together! I was thrilled! They stayed outside a long time. When they came in they had a plate FULL of cicada shells!! I asked, “What are you going to do with all those?” “Play with them!” was Andrew’s answer. I was just thankful he isn’t scared of bugs! A while later I sat down on the couch. I hadn’t thought of the cicada shells in a while. Andrew comes up and says, “Mommy may I make you a crown?”. Thinking he was SO CUTE, I replied, “Of course you can sweetheart! Thank you!!”. Then he proceeded to put CICADA SHELLS all over my head!!