There's a lesson in everything. Today's lesson is: never leave children of any age unattended. This was the story of my life for about 10 years. Then, you get complacent and when you find your kids smoking cigars you slap yourself for not remembering your lessons. Don't worry, A&P don't smoke cigars. They're too busy beating each other up. Peter told me the other day that they only fight in the back yard so that no one sees. Seriously, if you have the forethought to beat the crap out of your brother and plan to do so in the backyard, perhaps you have the brain capacity to engage in some problem solving. Just saying....
While we were on vacation we ran into some new victims who had never heard any of our crazy A&P stories before. While regaling the new, hapless, trapped listeners, Andrew burst out in a guffaw. "You got to write this stuff down, Mom."
Dateline: April 15, 2000
A&P: Age 3
I was on the phone with my brother. The boys were locked in the backyard. I could see them as they pushed their toys around the driveway. They were behind a gate. I was 10 feet away, albeit in the house, but I could see them and jump to their aid should an alien space ship land on the lawn.
Suddenly, they were gone.
Where the heck do two little boys who were happily pushing molded plastic toys two seconds ago, go?
Really? Freaking out.
I slammed down the phone and ran outside in complete panic.
There they were. So cute, so short, so standing in the middle of the flower beds holding handfuls of landscaping rocks. Whatever, I removed the rocks from the boys and the boys from the rocks and scooted them in the house.
It was April in Ohio. It gets cold at night. Our house got really cold that night- inexplicably.
The next morning, Tim ventured to the basement to figure out why if we had it set at 80, the house was 58. The furnace was flashing alarmingly. Yellow and red. "No clue," Tim said. "You should call someone."
Within the hour, the furnace people appeared. Within 5 minutes I had my answer.
My lovely children had, in the 15 seconds I could not see them, stuffed our furnace flue with handfuls of landscaping rocks. About 75, one inch landscaping rocks to be exact. They had completely crammed the flue. Thankfully, our furnace had the good sense to shut itself the heck off or we would have had a serious issue.
I put a squirrel cage on the furnace flue. Days later, I found the boys standing again in the flower bed, one with the squirrel cage and the other with a handful of rocks. I probably yelled. Really loud.
Several years later, we had to replace the furnace. Imagine that? Not sure why a furnace would have trouble when stuffed with stones. When they unhooked the old furnace, more rocks fell from the piping.
Now they just pummel each other in the backyard. Progress? I'm not sure.