Thursday, February 19, 2009

Fresh Manure

Since it has been so long since the last post, I thought I’d treat you to a trifecta of dragon poop tales. Be prepared, though. These clips aren’t for the weak of stomach or mature of personality.


For the last couple weeks, everyone in the family has been suffering from some sort of cold or flu bug. There was snot on every soft surface, including my pillowcase, though it wasn’t from me. Fevers, sneezing, sinus headaches… the whole delightful package. And then to top it off, the G.I. Disturbance fairy visited us all. Little Lucan was the first one to experience the effects of her wrath.

As I always do, I put the boys in the bath together and left the door open while I cleaned the adjoining room, the kitchen. Declan and Lucan splash around and play where I can hear and peek at them, while I get to load the dishwasher without someone pulling all the silverware back out and using them to stir the dog’s water. It’s very win-win. It’s also kind of amusing to listen to them jabbering and shrieking as they fight over toys and constantly flip-flop the seating arrangement.

This particular day I heard said shrieking, possibly a little more than normal, but didn’t think much of it. When my usual circuit of scraping, scrubbing, and cringing brought me back by the bathroom door, I stepped in for a check-up. That’s when my mouth dropped open as my eyes darted across the water. Little turds! Swirling debris! And…pineapple chunks? And there, right in the middle of it all, my three-year-old was sunken to his nose making a motorboat wake. Aaaaagghh!!

Declan popped his head up, as I was simultaneously hitting the drain and starting the shower, and informed me, “Lu pooped, Mommy.” Yeah, this information would have been useful, say, around the time it happened. Before you decided to try caca chapstick. In my horror, with a wet and slimy baby in my arms, I demanded that he puke to get the germs out of him. Sure as…well, you know…he did! We just added that mouthful of goodness to the mix headed lazily for the drain.

Needless to say, even though that was a first for Lucan, the bath routine now includes the periodic, “Anybody poop in there?”


Declan was the next person to become personally acquainted with the effects of intestinal difficulty. Some might argue that he picked the bug up orally from his little brother. But in any case, it made for one of the funniest new experiences he has had in his short life. Funny for me, that is.

One morning Bryan and I were in the kitchen making pancakes (again), as a cheery little Declan came around the corner from the living room. He was babbling to us about something – the cats, his new fort plans, or where he planned on having me chauffeur him to in the afternoon. Who knows? The important thing is that he froze, mid-sentence and mid-stride, and looked up at us in utter confusion.

His eyes narrowed as he asked, “Did I just poop?”

I shrugged. “I don’t know, did you? Why? Do you feel like you have to go again? Bryan, did he go to the bathroom yet this morning?”

Bryan, who had been paying more attention to Declan’s body language that I had, shook his head slowly. “No… I think he means now.”

A check of his pajama pants confirmed it. Declan’s first “shart” was as confusing to him as it was hilarious to me.


Last weekend we visited family on the other side of the state. We had just gotten onto the highway for our return drive Sunday night when Declan announced that he needed to go caca. I guess he couldn’t sense that 15 minutes earlier when we were at the restaurant. Since we were squarely between exits, Bryan told him he couldn’t stop.

What?!” His ultra high-pitched squeak sounded so desperate.

“Hold on, buddy. I’ll pull over in a minute and find a place for you to go,” Bryan reassured him.

Moments like these make me glad that Declan is in my line of sight when I’m not driving. The wide-eyed look of confusion and disappointment on his face was priceless.

“Like a doggy?” he asked sadly.

I don’t know what made me laugh harder – the fact that he was picturing himself squatted in the grass along side the road, or the fact that even though the thought horrified him, he was willing to do it! Despite his resigned willingness, we took our Doggy to a gas station at the next exit.



This week I got to go to Wal-Mart by myself for a change. I was enjoying strolling slowly down the baby toy aisle, without having to wrestle a slightly different version of a toy we already own out of anyone’s greedy hands, when I froze.

“Uh-oh,” I thought. “Did I just poop?”

It wasn’t so funny from this side of the story.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

What would you do-oo-oo for a Klondike?

What would I do for a Klondike?

Well if it happened to be the kind with itty bitty pieces of Heath bar in that deliciously melty chocolate shell, I would consider swiping one right out of my parents' freezer. I wouldn't consider it for too long though. I'd just go for it. I would stash it in my coat pocket as I was getting ready to take the boys out to the car. I would do it quickly, so the special copper-colored wrapper didn't catch their attention. I would take care to hug my mom against my left side, so the Klondike bar wouldn't get crushed. I would take it out of my pocket in the car and put it in the dark center console, again making sure no eagle-eyed toddler spied my treat. I would prepare an explanation and excuse for why he couldn't have it in advance, in case I wasn't clever or fast enough. (In other words, a big fat Mom Lie.) I would drive a little bit faster than normal because the heat keeping our fingers from freezing would also be warming that velvety vanilla ice cream. I would do my best to stash the bar in my own freezer when we got home. "What you gettin' in the freezer, Mommy?" "Oops, is this the freezer? That's not where your juice is! Silly me!" I would hustle both boy to their rooms and put them down for a nap 30 minutes earlier than normal. And then I would get out my un-crushed, un-melted, stolen and smuggled Klondike bar and eat it ever so slowly with my feet up on the couch and a sugar rush like none other.

That's what I'd do for a Klondike!

Monday, February 2, 2009

The Flask

The traveler had stolen a small flask of water off an ill man many years before. She had been young and he had been lonely, so he took her into his confidence. Their walk together was pleasant enough, but she had other companions and greater destinations in mind. Before very long, she her brisk steps pulled her out of the weaker man's sight. His beautiful silver flask, so precious to a man who moved slowly and found water so infrequently, was selfishly tucked into her coat pocket.

The flask stayed in the pocket day in and day out. She rarely thought of it. It was just a small comfort, something the traveler knew she could count on should her own sources of water run dry. It was never a great concern. She moved swiftly through obstacles - the stinging chill of mountain passes and suffocating scorch of desert sands. During these times she might pat the swell in her jacket pocket - just a little, just for comfort - but never drew the flask out. Before very long at all, she would return to the ample wells and springs she knew so well.

It was on an ordinary day that the traveler finally called upon the stolen flask she had hoarded for so long. The sun was shining, filtered through emerald boughs, before resting warmly on her head. The flowers underfoot filled the hazy air with the sweetest perfume. Before the traveler was a cool, pristine spring. It was her favorite one, the one that was both the beginning and end of all her travels. For one so prone to wanderlust, this was as close to a home as she could know or want.

As the traveler approached her favored water hole, there was a resounding crack. In an instant, caught completely unaware, the traveler was pinned to the forest floor by a massive tree branch. She struggled for hours to remove it, and then called out for help for several more. But this was her favorite spring because not only was deep and pure, it was remote. It was hers alone. There would be no help, not even from the spring itself that she had esteemed so highly for so long.

Finally, lips cracked and throat turned raw from all her efforts, the desperate traveler removed the little flask of water. The bottle was carved as beautifully as the day she had first taken it for herself. It glinted and gleamed in the rising moonlight. She was suddenly very glad she had taken it and kept it all to herself these many years. It might have helped the aging man, but she had so much more to lose than he did. Now the flask would give her the boost she needed to safely pass through the greatest test of all her journeys.

The creak of the cap as she unscrewed it brought a leap of joy and anticipation to her heart. Satisfaction glowed in her eyes as she brought the cool metal to her lips. She inhaled, thankful for this one small reserve. But there was nothing within, save the bitter mustiness of water long evaporated. It was dust, it was the wind, it was as if the water had never been at all.
As the traveler lay there, crushed into the soil, she couldn't help but think of the man she had cheated out of that last gulp of water. He could have done much more with it than her after all. She couldn't help but think this was an appropriate way for it all to end. There wasn't even enough water inside her for tears.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Dear Bryan...