Now that the boys are home again, it’s clear there are certain things I forgot in their absence.
Thing number one: NEVER employ the smell test to determine if a pair of boys’ pants is clean. I almost passed out smelling a pair of basketball shorts this week.
Thing number two: This smells like hell.
Please don’t judge me. I do not believe an eleven year old boy needs deodorant. I also do not believe that anything called “Swagger” will do any of us any good. (I told Bennett that he could use the Tom’s of Maine odorless deodorant his father uses, thinking that might have some sway. He looked at me as though I had suggested he use bubble gum perfume.) Efram came down to breakfast reeking, and announced that he had spread some “Swagger” all over his stomach. “Why is deodorant only for underarms if all of you smells?” he asked.
All of you might not smell if you used some soap in the shower.
Thing number three: If you don’t hear from them for an hour, panic. Girls can play for hours in silence, and I know at the very worst, someone will have painted onto someone’s face, there may be nail polish on a wall, or the Barbies may have found themselves into compromising positions.
After an hour of silence on Friday, I walked outside to this:
Bennett had taken a magnifying glass and carved KEEP OUT on a plank of wood that is now proudly displayed in their bedroom. They moved on from planks to a cozy little bonfire in our driveway. Minutes later, it had morphed into this:
I put my foot down before the marshmallows entered the scene, but seriously — an hour of silence, a magnifying glass, and I have to clean up that?