Tuesday, November 7, 2017

The Stuff That Lasts, Part Deux

First, let's talk about the stuff that *doesn't* last. A few of the games and toys I've thrown out recently:

1. Every remote control car we've ever purchased. We buy it, eagerly stuff in the batteries, start 'er up and for a few glorious nanoseconds, it works! Forward, backward, side, other side, into the chair, into the couch, under the table, through the trash pile, into a sibling. Wondrous! Then suddenly, it begins acting as if possessed, driving around in circles, paying little heed to the remote control or the frantic screeching of the children "Go there! That way! THAT WAY!" We then proceed to change the batteries in the car, in the remote, and in all the clocks and nearby toys just to be safe, but the car continues its feverish lurching until it comes to a sudden halt, silent, forevermore. No amount of pleading or battery changing can fix it, and it joins its friends "art projects" and "cutlery" in the garbage. (Who is throwing away all the cereal spoons and butter knives???  Who is it??? Whatever the cutlery did to you I PROMISE IT'S SORRY!)

2. Domino Rally aka "Spend hours setting up fragile domino pieces juuuussst so, to the point where your finger tips are numb, all while screaming at your sibling whose sneezes and existence are causing the dominos to fall. Then after countless frustrating hours (or maybe it's minutes who knows the unbearable tension does weird things with time) actually complete your Rally, call everyone over excitedly to watch this spectacular domino show that will be remembered for the ages and cry bitter tears because in the middle of toppling, one slightly-off-track piece causes the whole topple to stop, mid-topple. Finish by getting frustrated and kicking it, spraying domino pieces across the room and under the couch."

3. Bul pegiyah aka Mastermind: This toy is a favorite of the twins, who enjoy putting the pieces in the little holes, throwing them on the floor and on occasion, swallowing them. Just like love, Mastermind is now a very easy game to play because all that's left are one light blue and one orange piece. ("Um, is your code blue then orange?" "Omg yes! You won AGAIN!")

But this:

This stepstool, you guys, this has been with us since the beginning. It was a much darker shade of blue, back then. Also, we realized after many years of ownership that the top actually comes off and oh my god for the love of the chocolates I have hidden in the top cabinet behind the cereals do NOT take the top off, whatever you do. This stool is actually a lot like my kids, in that loves to hang out in the kitchen, underfoot, until I need it to do something for me and then suddenly it's nowhere to be found.

However, on the rare occasion that it's in the right place at the right time, it is a very useful item, allowing me to shove all the baking trays in the too-high cabinet (watch your head) and reach my chocolates.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

The Stuff that Lasts

Is blogging like bike riding? Not in that it also hurts your butt, but that once you do it, you don't forget how? Let's see.

I have been thinking a lot about stuff. As many of you know, we have a lot of kids. #Blessings! Once, I was in the kitchen (prolly cooking "I'll just have a yogurt instead" for dinner or preparing a lunch for its lengthy hibernation in my son's backpack. Sleep long and well, little sandwich!), and out of the corner of my eye I saw a horde of kids coming toward me. "Are my nephews also here?" I thought to myself. I didn't hear them come in but they are pretty stealth which is helped by them often showing up shoeless. Then I realized no, the hordes were all mine.

Wow I have a lot of kids was the thought I had next.

Anyway, I'm sure that related to something somehow.

So stuff. Another thing you probably know about us is that there is quite the age range among our kids. We go from 14-3. And I remember thinking when the twins were born (Ariella was 11) that if someone asked me, "Hey, Expert Parent Person, about how long can I expect my baby items to last?" I would nod sagely - for is there any other way to nod? - and expertly answer "About 11 years or 3 kids." Because many of the big ticket items we bought for Ariella that were still in great condition for Yaakov 3 years later and we managed to squeak by for Nadav 4 years after that - they had to be tossed when the twins came.

Crib and mattress? Buh-bye. Car seats? Probably safer at that point to just stick the kids to the car using peanut butter and hummus.

But some things did survive the purge and have been steadily keeping on for close to 14 years now. And I would like to pay homage (you guys it is NOT pronounced home-idge) to those items:

You know what this is? It's the changing table pad. Do you know why it's stained green at the bottom? Neither do I but let's not investigate too closely lest it lead to another doctor's appointment. So this pad was purchased for teeny tiny Ariella back in 2003. Truth is, we probably would have replaced it when Nadav was born but they don't sell this kind of pad in Israel. So we kept it. Can you imagine what this guy has been through? Don't imagine especially if you are ever planning to eat again. But a lot. This stoic, humble piece of plastic-covered foam gently cradled all 5 of our children's tiny bodies and in return for its service, was treated to a wide variety of stuff that flew out of them, often without warning. But it never complained, not once. It probably would have even eaten whatever I made for dinner, too. Wow. Serious home-idge, people.

Now since we are sorta kinda done with diapers, the changing pad resides on our Bed of Crap in our home office and let me just say if your home office doesn't include a Bed of Crap, a secondhand desk, a judo belt from omg who even took judo why the hell is this belt here???, an IKEA pantry that's doubling as a closet, drawers filled with clothing for your youngest because your friends stopped having kids before you and gleefully dumped their little girl clothing at your house in the dead of night, a Spiderman, the instructions for a humidifier we bought a year ago, used once and then sent off on its true path in life (to nobly sit on a shelf and collect dust and bacteria), strands of hair from when one twin yanked the other one's hair and refused to return it ("zeh mah hair sheli!!!!"), a dress-up hat, a broken umbrella and a robot (but not the helpful kind that will take over your life, just one that uselessly shoots foam discs at you and yells in scary Hebrew), well then, my friend, you might want to look up "home office" on Pinterest is all I'm saying.

Stay tuned for more rambles and stuff homages.