Monday, November 14, 2011

Welcome to Winter

Well, not technically.

Last week we awoke to a winter wonderland, or a very wet, soggy imitation of such.  When we were getting ready in the dark warmth of our bedroom, I'd remembered the forecast for snow and asked Cael to open the curtains and see if there was any white dusting our grass.


"What, Cael?"

As soon as he opened the curtains wider I could see that it was snowing much more aggressively than I'd been expecting, and I immediately began fielding snowman requests. 

"Mommy!  I want to go play outside!"

"Not right now, honey.  I'm still in my pajamas."

"When you put your clothes on, I want to go outside."

"Graham is still sleeping, and Wes (our daycare friend) will be here soon.  Then I have to make breakfast."

"But I want to go outside NOW!"

Welcome to winter.

It's not that I am against playing in the snow.  It's more that I don't like to be cold, wet, have a runny nose or numb appendages, all of which seem to go together like dodge ball and a bloody nose.  I knew that if I wanted to avoid playing outside at 7:00am, I'd have to come up with an activity that would be new, fresh and tempting enough to outshine the allure of the season's first snowfall.

Alas, there were no magic and/or talking trains running through town that morning, so I turned to the next most exciting thing I could think of.

"Hey boys, let's clean out the closets!"

Can you hear the crickets?  I could.  But as a mom of a toddler, I've mastered the art of making something tedious into something fun even more effectively than Cael manages to turn fun activities into tedious ones.  And he's good, so that's really saying something.

"We need to organize all of the craft supplies and all of this other 'stuff' in the laundry room closet. Whoever helps me the most gets a treat!  And whoever does the least has to help me clean the potty." 

"I want to help!"  
"No, me!"  
"Help, Mama!"

I wish I could say that they were much help.  But they did make trips to the garbage can and help me sweep and vaccuum, and in the self-centered world of boy-dom, that's as big a victory as one can claim.

But as I often do, I got on a roll and once the laundry room closet was organized, I turned my attention to the state of affairs in our toy closet and baskets.  Every few months I will pull out a handful of items (some they aren't playing with and some they are) to be set aside only to reemerge with new purpose after the boys have grown tired of others.  In order to execute this rotation, I have to take inventory on what we have and make sure everything is in its proper place.

Easier said than done.

As I surveyed the supply, I realized how many items were missing.  I knew they weren't in storage, so I went on the hunt for the missing toys.  I suspected I'd find them, along with a slew of mismatched socks and my 2009 Christmas photos, under a floorboard or through a hole in the wall that I'd written off as the gate to Narnia.  Instead, what I found was a confusing collection of items under the couch cushions that suggested some questionable behaviors had been taking place.

Not knowing how long ago those things had been pilfered, I decided to let it go and move on to the next problem at hand.  Where were all of the "Little People"?  Sadly, I already knew.

Forty-five minutes later, one really tired and sore arm and a violated pool table later, I had reclaimed the people along with several Mr. Potato Head accessories and an impressive collection of tennis balls.

It was clear I'd be getting no real assistance from my miniature helpers.

I noticed that the snow had let up considerably and briefly contemplated letting the kids slip and slide around on the gated deck so as to avoid the yard, still wet from what had begun as a vigorous rain.

But just seconds before the words left my mouth, I saw that the dog, full of anticipation, already did what he does best to usher in the season.

Photobucket Photobucket

Welcome to winter.  It's only a matter of time...

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