Friday, November 7, 2008

A challenge

Before I thrown down the gauntlet, let me set the scene.

We live in a Victorian Rowhouse or Townhouse (terraced), with multiple floors. When we first bought it, I had two children and none on the horizon (ha). The kids had one floor and we had the top floor, with an extra room for a study/work out room or whatever we fancied. Before we'd finished bashing down walls and rearranging rooms howver, the bonus baby was on the way and my dream room was officially the baby's room. It's great in that if he wakes I am not a whole floor away. However, there are 56 stairs from our family room to his bedroom so putting him to bed at night requires a Sherpa backpack, oxygen mask and thighs of steel. It's better now that we don't have to carry him, but the Ball & Chain and I always know exactly whose turn it is to put him to bed. There's no reading of stories up there as it takes about half an hour to catch our breath after the ascent.

He's usually tired when we put him to bed, and gives one the impression that he'll be "out like a light". Unfortunately, most nights when we go to bed there is evidence of nocturnal activity. I often spend 20 minutes looking for my pyjamas, worrying about dementia because I know I only got a clean pair out that morning. After I've given up and donned a new pair I then find the original ones neatly "folded" on my pillow along with 10 or 12 cuddly whales, dogs and teddies. One night I walked into my bedroom to find my bed completely stripped. Now I'm not saying the Ball & Chain doesn't help around the house, but there's no way he's changing sheets at 10pm. What on earth? A quick peek into the bathroom confirmed my suspicions when I found one pillowcase on the floor. The little one had stuffed every piece of bedding (including duvet) down the laundry chute. This is quite a feat since the laundry chute was deliberately made too narrow for a teenager to stuff a toddler down. He must have had to feed the whole lot through a foot at a time. It's a bit worrying that no one heard anything.

I have long since learned to put away my sewing machine (which I use in my bedroom) and hide any scissors. Another night I left an inflated airbed in the hallway outside his room. It was obviously bothering him and he couldn't figure out how to deflate it, so he simply let out the air via a large hole made with my pinking sheers! My sink is occasionally full of small plastic animals that appear to have recently had a wash in my favourite hand cream. Sometimes they're to be found in the bath, making me think it's an invasion of enormous spiders, baby rats or whatever else can climb up a plughole. (Let's not go there.)

As with many American homes, I have a walk-in closet. Little guy obviously spends quite a lot of time in there as any shirt I pick out is buttoned up to the collar on the hanger. Since I'm the only one hanging my shirts up, I know that they don't start off like that. Most of them don't even stay on the hanger.

But to the point. The other night, as a result of his nocturnal naughtiness, I managed to hurt my back. With the firm reminder that nothing is too strange to occur in my world, I bet you can't come up with what happened. Remember, all things are possible. I would give the best answer (or even the right one) a prize but the postage these days is horrendous!



  1. I may come back with an entry for your challenge re your bad back, but I had to come straight in and tell you that I am still laughing. I have never heard of a toddler getting up to such grown-up activities, nocturnal or otherwise. But, all those stairs? How the hell do you manage those every day, pet?

  2. Be glad he goes up there and stays up there. I wouldn't fancy having to run up and down several times in an evening although it sounds like it'd make a good workout. He also sounds rather on the neat and tidy side, in a child-like kind of way ofcourse.

  3. Hahaha sounds like you have yourself a real little helper! (I'm sure his intentions are to help!)
    As for the challenge... let me guess:
    He had displayed some small suitcases on the bedroom floor and as you went over to his bed you tripped on one and fell over backwards in a kind of "back-flip" somersault kind of way.... am I close or way off?!

  4. I suspect you had to reach into that laundry chute of yours to try and retrieve something that shouldn't have gone down there .... hopefully not a small child or a much loved pet Lx

  5. You're both freezing but thank you for the warnings. I am sure it's a matter of time before both happen.
    As for the stairs, as I said, thighs of steel. I also never go from one floor to another without an armful of stuff.
    We were going to make his room the guest room, but if I wanted to bump off my mother, there are easier ways than risking a heart attack at bedtimes!

  6. You attempted a bedtime story. You feel asleep lying on his bed. He managed to stuff you into the laundry chute. You woke up in the basement laundry room, with a sore back.

  7. You found him sticking out of the laundry chute and hurt your back trying to pull him out!
    very funny post.

  8. Buttoning your shirts all the way up to the collar is incredible. You have to give the lad credit.
    Let's see - you got into the shower only to find that he'd squirted handcream all over the bath and you flipped over backwards rather unceremoniously?

  9. How old is this kid? My youngest is 27 and he still can't button his shirt all the way up!

    Let's see, I'm guessing you got up to see what was going on out in the hallway and stumbled into the game of marbles he was playing with his imaginary friend.

  10. Heavens, what orginality of thought from your other readers. I think slipping down the stairs is the obvious one - given my recent adventures - especially with an armful of stuff and no hands to save you! Seriously though, moving him into another (lower) bedroom sounds your most urgent job - it's very funny that he gets up to such strange tricks, but it could be dangerous! I'm being a neurotic Mum I know, but that's just me I guess. M :-)

  11. something to do with getting into a strange contortion trying to retrieve something hidden away somewhere impossible to reach? (put there by the naughty one?)

  12. Ha ha, not even close. When I have a moment, I will reveal the answer.

  13. I ahve to say, I love walk in closets too. I don't know how my fam back in UK mange with so few closets of any kind!

  14. I have a feeling that it has more to do with 'down' than 'up'. You have cleverly distracted us readers by telling us all about the lengthy journey you have as you travel to the top of your house; but I suspect that you hurt your back when the naughty one hid in the depths of your cellar. You went down to find him, stepped on a rat, screamed, lost your footing and fell back into the because the naughty one had gone looking for an ice lolly. How was the naughty one to know that there was a body hidden beneath the bags of frozen gooseberries?

    How's the gooseberry jam, by the way? You won't mind if I pass on it, will you?
    Bella :)

  15. Ah, if only I had a freezer to fall into. We have those American fridges with half of it being a freezer. So the only way you can fall into it is if someone opens the door and you take a running jump.
    Very nice try tho'.

  16. OK. I'm giving everyone a HUGE clue. I have a history of posting about this particular subject. (That'll sort out the wheat from the chaff.)

  17. Its got to be the toilet! So he obviously didn't get stuck down there. Maybe you hurt your back when he locked himself in & you had to prise him out somehow!

  18. yep, i'm going for the toilet.
    as in, that's the source of your bad back.
    the child was playing in the bathroom and he got stuck, and you had to haul him out.
    how old is the little sweetheart anyway?
    i claim my five pounds.

  19. Well, given my HUGE clue, Maggie and Clippy are closest. But hang on...

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