Wednesday, April 19, 2006

A Most Embarrassing Day!

I had a day like no other. I have had a couple of weeks of stress over money being tight and then my husband and I both suffering injuries that kept us out of work some making things even worse. So to say the least I was not able to concentrate on my genealogy research yesterday. I saw the sun shining and decided it would be a good day to do some spring cleaning.

I got my oldest out the door to school then I walked to the washroom. pushed through another load of clothes, grabbed the Windex and went to the kitchen to start. I started cleaning the microwave then the stove. While I was pulling the burners off and lifting the top of the stove I locked the oven and turned it on clean. After a while my smoke alarms began to go off even though I didn't see all that much smoke coming from the vent. So I shut the bedroom doors, with a passing thought of "that oven must have been dirtier than I thought." After a while the trickle of smoke coming from the vent began to thicken and turn blacker. It took a minute but then it dawned on me "Oh Shit!!! My skillets!!" I had a skillet with oil in there and my cast iron one that I keep seasoned and always in my oven. I don't know how I could have forgotten it!

I reached up and turned off the clean but couldn't unlock the oven yet. so I wait long enough for the oven to cool down so I can open it. I'm thinking I don't see flames yet so I caught it soon enough I can get the skillets out of there. Ha, I was fooling myself! As soon as I opened the door flames licked out at me. I slammed the door shut and quickly looked for baking soda. Funny how we are always out when I really need it. In desperation I figured my only option was to get some help.

Justin was already getting ready to go outside and play, so I rushed him out the door, slipped on sandals, grabbed Jamie, her sandals, her coat and the phone. I was dialing 911 on my way out the door. After I hung up I see Justin go back in the house! I hollered at him, but he quickly appeared around the corner with his sisters warmer shoes, because it was cold out. He was being sweet, but scared me.

I'm setting there on the cement of the porch with Jamie leaning against my chest keeping me warm, but I was still cold. Gee I wonder why. I'm still in my silky night shorts and sandals, so I look in and see that the house isn't in flames yet so I reached in and grabbed my coat. As I am setting on the steps tears are teasing at the corner of my eyes. It has been a hell of a couple weeks. I've managed to screw up our checking account, pull muscles in my neck and shoulders, James cut his eye with a piece of metal, my son flashes a girl at school, and now this, me trying to burn down the house! But my despair quickly turns to complete embarrassment, as I see three firetruck and an ambulance pull up! I must have looked a sight. I'm setting there in my night shorts, my curly uncombed hair looking like a rats nest, my teeth unbrushed (I felt sorry for the fireman who had to talk to me), and almost in tears.

Then to add to my embarrassment the reality of living on a block with about four other fireman. Word spreads very quickly. Soon my neighbor who was out on a worksite with her lawn business with one of the fireman's wives calls another neighbor and asked her to come over and let me know her house was unlocked if I needed it and then she finally gets through to me on the phone. She tells me to remind her to never let me cook in her house. Ha, Ha funny, but I wasn't cooking I was cleaning!

So finally they got the skillets out of the oven (so much for that batch of fried potatoes in the beacon grease I was planning to do this week), checked the walls for heat and cleared the house of smoke. No major damage other than my pride. I go back in and start cleaning up a bigger mess then I had started out to clean. But finally about 11:00 in the morning I was done with my cleaning and able to finally take my shower. Yes I clean my house so I get dirty before I take my shower. Because when I get around for the day I put on my uniform for work. This routine has always worked for me. This is the one time it made my day a little embarrassing.

When I told my husband the story last night he couldn't help but laugh. He asked me "well why didn't you just let it burn?" My response was "I really could care less about this house, but what I couldn't bare to loose is all my research, the old photos of our ancestors I have collected, things I have from both of my grandmothers, and more." He just smilled at me. He knew what my response would be, it's not the house you live in it's the precious sentimental things you can never replace, and he knows that would just break my heart.

Now I think today I will stick to a safe venue for me, my computer and my research. I don't need any more drama for a while!!

Monday, April 17, 2006

"...really I didn't do it my pants just fell down!"

I found myself speechless when I got a call from the principle of my oldest son's school the other day. The principle called me up and said "Mrs. Crooks I have your son in my office today. We've had a little problem with him today." I ask "Christopher?" I'm completely shocked because of all my children I never expect trouble out of Christopher when he is with other people. He strives so hard to please and make other people happy. He doesn't fight! The only trouble I have with him is his back talking when he thinks I'm being unfair, being to slow when doing chores (or not doing them right), or irritating his little brother. But those things happen at home. In public though he is very accommodating and well behaved.

So what could my Christopher have possibly done to end up in the principles office? How about flashing his underwear at another girl at school. Yea that's right he pulled down his pants at school and flashed a girl. Thank God he didn't get his underwear down!


She explains that she has tried to talk to him, but he insisted that he didn't pull them down they just fell down. At this point I wanted to laugh because I really could see his pants falling down and some girl being unfortunate enough to be behind him. My son is a bean poll. If I buy pants to fit him in the waist they are two inches above his ankles. So we have had to buy pants for length and synch them up with a belt or buy the kind that has the elastic strip inside that he can synch up. So this story was possible. But the principle asked me to speak with him about it and to come pick him up because he would need to go home for the day. She just couldn't allow him to stay there after such an incident.

Well going to pick him up was easier said then done. I explained to her that I don't have a vehicle during the day. My husband I are still sharing one vehicle until my truck is running. So we agreed that someone there would bring him home. They never got around to it so he spent his day in the office and came home on the bus anyway.

He walks through the door like nothing happened. So my guard goes up I know something is up. So I ask him "Christopher what happened at school today?" With a smile he replies " Oh nothing much Mom."

"Christopher, you and I both know that isn't true. Did you think the principle wouldn't call me about what you did today"

With gazed lowered and the smile instantly gone from his face he replies "No" then with great conviction "but Mom really I didn't do it my pants just fell down!"

A couple round without the truth from him and I say "Christopher, what did the little girl do that would make you want to do that to her"

He suddenly wanted to tell what she was doing wrong and forgot that he was trying to convince me that he pants just fell (and yes the pair he had on was a bit baggy) "Mom she wouldn't leave ........... and I alone. She kept following us around on the play ground and bugging us. I just did it so she would go away!"

Mission part one accomplished. "So you did pull your pants down then?"

Knowing he was caught and no use arguing the baggy pants angle anymore he admits that yes he did pull them down. Now what to do. Well I listed off all the privileges he would loose for a while until I though he could be responsible enough to have them back, including no allowance for the next week, no time on the computer, etc. I don't think he'll be pulling that stunt again. But looking back now I can't help but laugh.

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