Hey, y'all -
For Valentine's Day this year, we invited some friends over for a crafting party. We got out the colored papers and the glue sticks and the markers and the stickers, and let everyone make homemade valentine cards. Even the grown-ups got into it.
Because your dad's not around, we even got to use glitter. Boy, your dad hates glitter. Speaking of your dad, the highlight of the party for me was when Ms. Correy arrived, bearing a really delicious, expensive cake your dad had ordered for me all the way from the other side of the world. This man knows the way to my heart...I don't care one bit about jewelry, but I sure do love baked goods.
Of course Hagen wanted nothing to do with the arts and crafts until the party was over and everyone was packing up to leave. Then, he went into hyper-drive and hand-painted about 14 hearts, all by himself. If you want Hagen to party at 3:00pm, you gotta start revving him up at 12:30p.
For his class's card exchange, I had bought him a box of Pokemon cards that came with temporary tattoos. On the day of the class party, he woke up crying. Anyone who has ever raised a child knows what happened next: "But Mooooommm...I don't want to give my cards away! I love them too much! I caaaaan't...." etc. etc. insert Mom eye roll.
At the breakfast table, I asked him to write his name on his cards, but he was too busy mourning their loss. Laney tried to talk sense to him: "But Hagen!" she explained, "You'll give away cards, but you'll GET cards, too. And sometimes those cards come with cool things like pencils or bubbles!" Hagen wasn't having it. "We have to leave here in 30 minutes," I begged. "Hagen, PLEASE write your name on the cards." No. NO. NO. Then Laney, exasperated, decided she was tired of his nonsense and grabbed the cards, wrote his name on them, and shoved them in his backpack. "There!" she said.
I know you're not supposed to have a favorite child, but in that moment, it was her.
Hagen, Ms. Correy later reported that you got into the spirit of things a little, and actually gave away your cards, though at each person's box in circle, you stopped to say, "I sure do love THIS one." Or "I'll miss THIS guy."
Laney in the role of Favorite Child came to a screeching halt the next night at bedtime, when we discovered that she had head lice, and had given it to me. Hagen, in the role of Child Who Did Not Infect Our House With Bugs was suddenly promoted. Of course, we discovered this around 9:00pm. It's like a Law of Parenting: nothing bad ever happens at 9:00AM, when all the stores are open and the sun is up and it's possible to call on a babysitter. 9:00PM and after, only, for lice and ear infections and puking.
I called Correy and begged for guidance. As a preschool teacher, she's been down this road before. She told us to coat our hair in oil - she recommended coconut or mineral, but of course we only had avocado because it's $16 a bottle. Then, we were to wrap our heads in cling wrap and blow dry them as hot as we could stand it for about 5-10 minutes. The oil suffocates the bugs and the heat seals the deal.
Laney was a trooper about the whole thing, and the treatment was surprisingly effective. Correy told us that the next step would be to go to the drug store in the morning and get the lice shampoo. I asked Laney, "Can you please get dressed and maybe wear something that doesn't draw attention to us as we run into the pharmacy to buy shampoo for our parasites?" This was what she came up with:
Laney does not do beige. Or low-key.
We dosed ourselves and Laney got to miss a day of school, and Correy came over at lunch time and pulled nits out of my hair while I prepared a show pitch for Netflix. Later that day, my boss asked me why I was so snippy, and I told him, "I don't know...maybe because I have two kids and two jobs and a husband in Afghanistan and an hour to get this presentation done and bugs are LAYING EGGS IN MY HAIR."
We got the lice killed off, and y'all...I thought we were past the domestic crises. So I invited some of our friends over for lunch on Sunday, and the night before the lunch, I decided to fill the hot tub for the first time this year. I filled it to the brim, turned up the temperature and went to bed. The next morning, I opened the lid to see if it had reached the desired temperature, and instead discovered it was empty. The "Twilight Zone" theme started playing in my head. How do 500 gallons of water just disappear? I flipped the breaker off and started to investigate. I noticed some loose boards on the side of the tub. I pulled them off, and there, by the motor, discovered the body of a dead cat.
If lice never happen before 9pm, random dead animals on your property that need to be excised from your hot tub motor never appear when your husband is in the same ZIP code.
Once again, Correy and Greg showed up without being asked, and Greg removed the cat. Dear Father God, if you read this blog, please assign Mr. Greg an additional 100 Heaven Points for his work down here, and see if you can have his favorite beer waiting for him when the time comes.
When it's been a few weeks since I've updated this blog and you're wondering what-all is going on, now you know. But I bet you wish you didn't.