Sunday, October 31, 2004

Is That a Tootise Roll? (Or: Don't Step on the Poop!)

My husband, The Pastor, is sick. He has a cold and has taken to our bed (actually my side of our king-sized bed because it has a better view of the television). Yesterday, he rested most of the day and this morning, he nearly didn't go to church. As chance (?) would have it, he didn't have to preach this morning, so he went, faked it and came home, back to bed. I stayed home with all the kids because Babygirl is recovering from her cold and sounds like she is coughing up a lung and her spleen, too.

Meanwhile, I'd invited my sister and her family over for an early dinner and trick-or-treating. This obviously meant that I had to clean off my dresser and pick up all the books scattered on YoungestBoy's floor. All the toilets needed scrubbing, all the floors had to be vacuumed. The piles of laundry had to be washed and the dishes had to be put away. I had to cook. I had to bake homemade butter cut-out cookies shaped like pumpkins. I was nearly finished mixing the dough (which had to chill for one hour), when I realized I was a quarter cup short of flour.

Please. Why don't I plan ahead? Check ingredients? Miss Huson, my seventh grade home-economics teacher, would be so disappointed in me. So, I joind a bunch of other people who do not plan ahead at the grocery store this afternoon.

I did have a slow start this morning, but then I worked all day (hello? Day of Rest? Where is my Day of Rest?). How can a medium sized house with only four children and three cats and one husband degenerate so quickly? If only the Second Law of Thermodynamics (The "Law of Disorder") hadn't been debunked with statements like this: A typically erroneous quote from a high school chem text is: "The law of disorder states that things move spontaneously in the direction of maximum chaos or disorder." First of all, there is no such law of disorder for things. But the worst here is how the sentence misleads students about things moving by themselves when the author puts in that word "spontaneously". That defeats understanding of how the second law works. Molecules tend to become random spontaneously by themselves, but things do NOT.

For one glorious moment, I thought the Second Law explained everything! The reason for scattered socks! For crumbs on the floor! The disintegration of anything resembling order in this house.

I put the boys to work cleaning and running the vacuum cleaner. Everything did come together--even with the unplanned grocery store excursion. My sister and her family were an hour and a half late (typical!) which I had anticipated, so when they arrived, it was 4:30 p.m. and just about time to eat tacos.

I had originally intended to leave Babygirl home with my husband, but since he wasn't feeling well, I took her trick-or-treating, too. She was enthusiastic about the idea of going outside in the dark. Since the moon eclipse, she wants to go into the night every night.

I dressed her as a Seahawks cheerleader, completely with homemade pom-poms (made from yarn). She even let me put yarn ribbons in her hair. Her pink coat covered her costume, but I took pictures of her first, which really is all that matters. YoungestBoy went as "Flame," an alter-ego he created himself. He had a black cape with "FLAME" in prominent yellow felt letters. Most importantly, he had red hair, thanks to red hair gel.

We live on a circle, so we hurried from house to house. Babygirl is a cautious soul and has refused to be held by another adult since she was three months old. She scares easily. But not tonight! Tonight she jogged in the dark streets and even went into some homes to snatch candy from their over-sized bowls. She said "trick-or-treat" when we were in the street and then at the doorsteps, she just said "Pleeeease!" And then "thanks!" The people in our circle are generous because we don't have many trick-or-treaters, so they gave the kids handfuls of candy.

When we came home, we stood for a moment in the doorway, Babygirl and I, and I caught a glimpse of a chocolate colored mound in the entryway. I said to no one in particular, "Is that cat poop?"

Our mutant cats occasionally leave a random log of waste . . . it's as if it sticks to their posteriors like some kind of stinky velcro and then falls off. I didn't really think it was poop, but then TwinBoyA said, "Yes!" And I said, "Get me a tissue!"

Then I stood guard, holding Babygirl. The kids--my three boys and their two cousins--were high on the excitement of full candy buckets. They were circling around like vultures, scurrying like ants carrying a giant grasshopper corpse and then YoungestBoy stepped up to me and said, "Look, Mom!" And I said, "No, no, no, no, don't M O V E!" And then, "NO NO NO NO NO NO! I SAID D O N ' T MOVE!"

And then he pranced, mushing that cat poop into about five different spots which I hollered, "WHERE IS THAT TISSUE!" I keep a tissue box as mere six feet from the front door and TwinBoyA had been gone for a long, long time, much longer than necessary. I didn't dare grab a tissue myself because I was guarding the cat poop--and doing a--excuse me, I can't resist--a crappy job of it.

My husband crawled out of his sick bed and came downstairs to see why I was yelling. I explained that there was CAT POOP all over now and I was waiting for a tissue--and here TwinBoyA calmly walked up and handed me a measly wad of toilet paper--not a tissue, as I had requested--and I made some kind of gutteral animal noise of disgust and horror and pain.

Then I took the smelly cat-poopy shoes to the bathroom and scraped them and cleaned them and rolled my eyes. I cleaned the carpet (yes, carpet in entry way, how stupid, huh?).

When I went upstairs, my husband said, "Are you finished yelling?" And I said, "You would have yelled, too!" He denied that. I contend that it's only natural--and right--to yell when you have kids milling about a live grenade "cat deposit" and when you can see with x-ray vision that someone will STEP IN IT and the universe holds its breath for just a second while it waits for you to intervene. Yelling is a perfectly appropriate response.

You try it. And let me know if you yell. Place a chocolate-colored roll of cat poop in your entryway as five children stomp about and the doorbell rings and you are holding a two year old and a candy bucket and then let me know if you YELL when someone steps in it and grinds it into the carpet five times before he stands still while you wait for a tissue which should have arrived in seconds, not minutes.

Yeah. See? I'm right again.

And thus ends another Day of Rest. Bring on the week! I'm so refreshed.


Blogger Beth said...

Oh, I do not have nearly the amount of fun that you do!! You and your stories crack me up!!

9:02 AM  
Blogger Tina said...

I am so glad that Grace had a good time trick or treating...I hope you post costume pictures at some point. I'm with you on yelling about poop...poop requires a loud warning...I am about to yell about it here and now...except I think it's not from a cat, but a two year old child.

6:28 PM  
Blogger WordsRock said...

Ayup, you're one of the busiest folks I know! :)

8:08 PM  

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