Tuesday, November 23, 2010

It's Coming From Inside My House...

Lydia and I wake up every morning ready to go into battle. Depending on the seasons, we could be going to war against squirrels, the Ice Cream Man, people who use lawn movers or leaf blowers or snow machines at 7am on a Saturday.

We also fight ticks, mosquitos, colds, flu season, holiday season, end of the TV season and seasonal allergies. The point being, we're ALWAYS in full gear, weapons loaded and ready to kick some a$$ the minute we head out the door.


It seems that we may have missed something *very important* about where those battle lines between moms and our domestic enemies lie. Because I always thought my house was the Green Zone. Switzerland. The equivalent of yelling "Base!" right before you're about to get tagged. 

Oh, stupid Kate. I should have known better, because just as in any good horror movie, I'm slowly finding out that there are acts of evil and treachery happening inside my house.

How can you tell if you've been infiltrated? Here are some of the clues:
  • The toilet seat is up. And you only find out when your keister winds up in the potty water because you sank too far into the bowl. At 3:00am. In the dark. 
  • The cereal box in the pantry has no cereal in it. In the mad dash to get people out the door and to school on time, you grab the nearest box of empty. Who wants a big bowl of air for breakfast?
  • The phones have gone missing. The children all want to say hello to Nana or Auntie or Lydia, but don't want to share phones or wait their turn. So they each grab one and dash off. The phones, never to be returned to their cradles, are found days later, batteries dead, in their closets. Now Kate goes around her house yelling, "Where are all the Tom Cruises? Go find Tom Cruise, all of you, and put them away!"
[Editor's Note: It isn't just the phones that I call Tom Cruises - it's anything I find lurking in the closet that shouldn't be there. I know it's pretty random. The other day I was battling Dickie the Yard Fairy and my four year old son Happy came outside, phone in hand and saying, "Mommy, the Tom Cruise is for you." It was my boss. So I was all: "Oh, haha, no, we don't call you Tom Cruise, we call the phone that becau-- never mind." That doesn't necessarily do good things for one's career trajectory. I think he thinks I'm either overly, or under-ly medicated. - Kate]
  • Your bras have been re-purposed. Apparently there was a raid on Barbie's mansion and all the GI Joe's had to parachute in. And daddy has already made it very clear how he feels about using his handkerchiefs. Also, it seems they make impressive dual-fire slingshots. Which you discover when you find them in your now leaf-less trees. 
  • Your Internet has been hacked. You sign on and find this on the screen:

and the shaving cream and little paper cups you keep in the bathroom gone and then you go upstairs to find out that your guest bathroom is the Manhattan Project.
  • Clearly you've been robbed. That Costco sized tub of cheese balls that you hid where the Crock Pot normally goes and that you save for True Blood nights -- because, well, what blood is to them is fluorescent orange cheese powder to you -- is gone. Devise plan to trap suspected thieves. Then devise better plan to figure out way to coat Eric Northman in fluorescent orange cheese powder. Even yesser.
  • The vacuum cleaner has been killed. While performing the Hoover autopsy, you discover the culprit. Ponytail holders. That Target special of 100 elastic bands in every color that you bought last month has been whittled down to just the crappy dull brown one your wear around your wrist because it's the only. one. left. You would peel them out of their lint and fuzz web, but for the fact that last week you vacuumed up a huge bug and you're afraid it's still there. Waiting to exact revenge.
  • Emeril Lagasse has been kidnapped. And clearly, those responsible are hiding him in your kitchen. There's no other way to explain that one minute it's a normal kitchen, and the next BAM! there's peanut butter coating the faucet, a jelly pool slowly oozing its way down that space between the countertop and the refrigerator, eleven butter knives has been conscripted into duty and the floor not only adheres to your feet, but also provides a lovely crunch to entertain you while you plan your escape. There's a decent chance you'll be chewing off your own feet. 
  • Geneva Convention of Toothbrushes has been violated. You spare yourself a Full Surrender by opting to brush your teeth before heading off to school, only to find it's been *gasp!* dropped into the weird space between the sink and the toilet. There's only one solution for such horrifying treatment. A proper funeral. Your backup toothbrush is in your toddler's mouth, clearly violating the One Mouth Rule, and right as you relent and shove your kid's toothbrush in your mouth (gross, but necessary) said child says, "Oh, hi mom! Is that the toothbrush that was in the toilet last night?"
  • The Remote Control is -- well, remote. Where does it go? Isn't its prime location usually within about 10 feet of the television? Even better, it's stuck on Nick Jr. You can't change the channel, and Dora and that stupid monkey are on.
And there you sit, unshowered - well, except for the bum bath in the toilet - no breakfast, no phone to call Lydia and complain, the lack of bras and brushing of teeth have led to a Surrender, Eric Northman has been traded away for that little girl and her *mostly* naked primate, and your kitchen and bathroom are about to be declared official disaster zones by some guy with too little hair, too much Brill Creme and a carrying a clipboard.

And that's when you know the little terrorists have won. For now...

(c)Herding Turtles, Inc. 2009 - 2010


  1. Oddly enough, it was only about 3 hours ago that I caught my sweetest first born cleaning the crust from between his fingers with my toothbrush.

    When Daddy says "Honey, I'll watch them so that you can have some 'me time'"- word of advice- Don't listen to him.

    His "watching" them only means that they will come out alive. Your stuff and house, not so much.

  2. It's sad but true... I lose everyday... I just hadn't realised how when you lay out categorically like that, it's pretty clear, I lose badly in the war everyday..... I'm no Sgt Major in my army.... I'm a private with dirty boots, and a smelly uniform...

  3. Did i miss the post about why your phones are called Tom Cruise??

  4. Oh yes, the dreaded empty cereal box. In my house, it's often an empty waffle box, cracker box, and juice bottle,too.Like I'm the only one who knows where the trash can is.

  5. Ha I love the part about the kitchen. Are you sure my Almost 2 year old didn't drop by? Because that's what my kitchen is like after she has been in there for about 2 minutes.
    Oh and the empty cereal box? just walk into the front room, I'm sure that the cereal is now all over your couch.

  6. My sis doesn't have net as I've said before, so I send her these in email form. This was her response this morning- thought you would appreciate it-"I wonder if she’s ever been locked in her laundry room trying not to panic while listening to two four-year-olds giggle on the other side of the door? Or had to call the plumber 6 times over a period of 4 months to scoop out plastic toys from the toilet trap? Or had a bar of wet soap left in her sheets and found by her feet when sliding into the bed? Or had her microwave blown up by an expensive earring? Or had poop left in the stove to stink up the house when an unsuspecting parent turns it on to preheat? OH, and btw, today when looking for my bra I found it in their floor with crackers and cheese in the cups.
    So tonight I’m hoping the dog doesn’t have a seizure because I’m planning on having one myself."

  7. I surrendered long ago when it comes to keeping the house clean. My goal now is just to not be gross. And I usually don't accomplish even that!

  8. I am so glad I'm not the only one who manages to lose 99 of 100 brand new hair ties in the span of a few days!

  9. Did they do the shaving cream prank? My HS bud sat on her toilet this am to discover one of her sons had hidden mayo packets underneath the entire rim of the toilet seat. Imagine the sound. Imagine the mess. Bwaaahaaaahaaa. I voted today; LOVE the tap it like a T-box button! :)

  10. Ohhhhh. Even. Yesser. I love you Kate, Lydia, and everyone leaving the hilarious comments above.

    When battle fatigue sets in, come on over to RFM! Thank you!!!

  11. Apparently you've been to my house lately...

    I sorta solved the toothbrush one - I bought a pack of dental gum that I use to get me to the drug store to buy a new toothbrush that I've taken to hiding as the children think it's great to use my brush to clean the counter off.

    It's odd (hiding my toothbrush) but at least I know where the toothbrush has been.


  12. We buy the preparing-for-Armageddon sized pack of toothbrushes at Costco. And hide them. Right now the "child safety" latches are impenetrable for her, but I'll have to be cleverer once she figures them out.
    My Little Terror really isn't all that bad, so I lucked out. So far. She has lots of time to work on that though, as she's only 2. She's already figured out that she can cart her little chair around the house, so some mornings when she wakes up before I'm ready, I let her free-range-baby around the house, and I'll wake up to find that she's busted into all the potty-training rewards that were in the top drawer, or she's found my (apparently not well-)hidden stash of chocolate at the back of the counter.
    She did come out one time with all my (clean AND dirty) underwear worn necklace-style, stains-and-all - roughly 30 pairs. "Look mommy! All my bibs! I am ready to eat!"

  13. I walked in to the bathroom in the dark last night to find that my feet were crunching. I turned on the light and THERE was the bag of peanuts my INLAWS gave my kids after we went to one of those "throw the peanuts on the floor" steakhouses this weekend.
    I think I am going to have to take some peanuts with us next time we go visit!

  14. I like the wadded-up paper napkins and socks that lurk underfoot, waiting for me to slip on them when I come through with a full load of laundry...if only I could find the laundry baskets, which have been conscripted into toy-carrying duty and then left, for mysterious reasons, IN MY OFF-LIMITS HOME OFFICE.

    @The Mama? Oh yes, I have learned *exactly* how much my husband means it when he claims he'll watch the kids while I treat a patient. I get better results from popping in a movie. And they STILL come in mid-treatment to ask me for things, as if Daddy cannot possibly answer the question, "Can I have a snack?" Even though he's merrily internetting away at the kitchen desk. You know - right.next.to.the.snack.cupboard.

  15. I just gotta know, is there a rule somewhere that says "Husbands shall watch the kids by playing on the computer/game console/something else that means they will NOT be watching the kids"?

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