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Sunday, August 2, 2009

In All Honesty, They'll Probably Still Spread Them All Over the Car

I'm leaving on a week-long trip in the morning. So last night, as I was lying in bed, exhausted and wishing I could sleep after running errands and packing all day, I got to thinking about the coloring books I had picked up for the kids for the ride, and I was tormented with images of crayons stuck into every crevice of the car, hundreds of broken crayon bits underfoot, melted crayons on the seats. And I couldn't stop thinking about how nicely my sewing machine, my serger and I could solve these crayon concerns.

Now, it's classic for me to get sidetracked in the middle of important preparations with an irresistible detail like this, and all too often the end result of these diversions is last-minute rushing and panic. ("You say your friend's birthday party is in an hour, Jane? I think I'll make her a skirt.") But I was convinced, after playing out an ultra-simple, quick-and-dirty design in my insomniacal head many times, that this one would truly be quick and easy.

Surprise! It was quick and easy. I think I made all three crayon cozies in about a half an hour. And I think I really am ready for my trip tomorrow, in time for a reasonable bedtime and a blog post! I do believe in miracles. I do, I do, I do. (Thanks for all your help, Peter. It never could have happened without you. I wish you could come.)

No, Ellen doesn't get any.

Let me tell you a little something about Ellen. No, let me show you:

I went down to get the laundry. All the chairs and the bar stools were up on the table, and it used to be that she couldn't climb her high chair as long as the tray was on it, but this was the day that she mastered that skill. She did this ink job in literally less than 5 minutes. It rubbed off all over my clothes when I picked her up to take her outside for a photo shoot.

Not blood. Lipstick. 5 tubes, all broken off at the base. And it was all over clothes and carpet too. Along with every other kind of makeup in my makeup bag. She stood on books to reach it off my dresser. She likes to introduce Adam to new activities he wouldn't have thought of on his own.

Ellen laughs at obstacles. Want something from a top cabinet? Open the drawers, climb them like stairs, and there you are on the counter.

Remind me to buy a second latch, for the freezer.

I think she walks around playing a soundtrack in her head that goes, "Open it up, empty it out, spread it around. Repeat."

Can you find Taylor the Goldfish under the bottle of flakes Ellen gave her? After first emptying out most of the water?

Most of these pictures were from last week. And there were more pictures from last week that I didn't show you because they depict the aftermath of the second time last week that she removed her own messy diaper during nap time, and they are revolting.

Nope, Ellen's not getting her own crayons.

See you in a week or so.


Anonymous said...

I wonder if I could sew myself a new swimsuit and a beach cover-up in half an hour. Easy!

The crayon cozies are great.

Have fun!

I know we've discussed my suggestion that you confine her in her room behind a baby gate, but now I'm thinking you'll need a gate for both the top and bottom parts of the door.

(How far is it to Sand Point? How many people fit there? How long are you staying? We decided Washington is too hot and we're considering Bear Lake . . . but *maybe* we could come crowd you all.)

Anonymous said...

(Or maybe you could try crating Ellen?)

mermaids said...

the crayon cozies are fab.

how do you have time to sew... or breathe with ellen in the house? :)

seriously, she's adorable and clearly has a fantastic mind. if she decides to channel that energy, inquisitiveness, and creativity for good instead of mischief, she will go far in this world. and i will be able to say, "i remember seeing photos of her covered in markers and lipstick."

Katie said...

You should sell those. I would totally buy one (a bunch actually). I could is it at church every Sunday!!

Laura said...

Just because the reunion was about 2 weeks ago, and Ellen may have interacted with my children at that reunion, does not necessarily mean she learned her new "Open it up, empty it out, spread it around. Repeat" routine from my children. I don't know where you may have gotten that idea:)

J and M Lloyd, est. 2004 said...

Okay how can you not respond and laugh out loud to that post. Probably because she's not my child, but from my perspective it's quite entertaining. And again, I must ooh & aah over your sewing talent!

Jstar said...

Oh, it's so good to share the "joys" of parenting with another family! Mary, you are an inspiration with your crafty spirit.

Shaun Roundy, MA, EW, RMT said...

I'm torn between thinking Ellen is the funniest, cleverest, cutest thing ever; and feeling your pain! I guess I can do both.

Betsy said...

I do both, too.

hannah said...

Next time I feel like my children are getting into everything, I will read this post and think... it's not so bad after all. The have never made it into the freezer.

Anonymous said...

I was keeping tabs of all of her adventures (the ones I had heard about) from that week...and was wondering why you hadn't blogged about them. Now I get it--you were saving them up.

So we survived the week in Sandpoint with only a bottle or two of emptied lotion (in the car), one serving of yogurt slathered all over, and the toothpaste/mouthwash escapade (behind locked doors--ADAM!) Not too bad! (Or am I forgetting something?) Maybe all the time in the lake distracted her.

marymary said...

Lili, that's a good list, except there were TWO yogurt incidents and you didn't mention how she smeared her ice cream cone all over herself and her carseat or how she colored on the sheets with Jane's crayons.

OhSusanna said...

Ellen is channeling Ben's spirit of not even quite two years ago (was it really that recent)? These pictures make me sigh with relief that we're mostly through that stage (knock on wood). You had better get rid of all of the permanent markers now, unless you also want a life-sized dinosaur (or whatever subject she chooses) on your dining room floor.

Just watching you all week on vacation with Ellen made me exhausted. It's a good thing she's cuter than sin.

My kids are always so puzzled when I use that expression, and then I am too, but I still use it. What does it mean and where does it come from?

Wow, this is quite the comment ramble.

Jennifer said...

I once found my two year old daughter hanging from the open door of the freezer. She was trying to reach something on top of the fridge and the door opened when she put her weight on it and swung open. I would have loved to have a picture of that, but prudence suggested that I rescue her first. :) Those were pictures of only one week in Ellen's life? Oh my!!! We've had similar events at my house, but spread out among five kids over many years!!! Hang in there!

Betsy said...

I like the crayon caddies, very cute, and a great idea. Are the pockets and lining made with fabric?

Susanna, I choose to think "cuter than sin" plays off the idea that it could reach the point of sinfulness to adore a child so much. Because I don't want to admit to the sometime attractiveness of sin. Anyway Ellen is cuter than sin, it's just a fact.

Alex said...

I must be lucky cuz my boy hates getting messy. If he has jelly on his fingers, he fusses about it until I wipe them clean. What different personalities kids have. You should do tutorials on your sewing projects. So crafty. I try some stuff, but being a novice, I never know where to begin sometimes. I love getting ideas from you. :)

Alex said...

Oops, this is Ligia btw, not Alex.

Sonja said...

You are so funny!!! My Ella is as problematic as your Ellen. I am hoping that her stealthy mess making skills will some how translate to a highly paid job in the CIA. Ella could dismantle any objectionable foreign government in a matter of hours :) You have inspired me to take some pictures of my mess maker before she grows out of it.