The Kofford Family relocates to Colorado after 40 years as Californians. In December of 2007, Grandma Lorraine is diagnosed with Stage 4 brain cancer. Sadly, she passed away on Dec. 26th, 2008 after a year long courageous battle. Follow our journey as we keep Lorraine's memory alive, and as we learn to appreciate that each day we are given, is a gift to be enjoyed!

“Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.”
~Maria Robertson

Friday, June 13, 2008

Sock wars and construction paper creations

Ok, enough already! I’ve finally had it with construction paper creations and dirty socks decorating my home.

Ashlyn occupies herself with writing lots of stories, and making elaborate 3-D pop up construction paper lands. In the basement, you will find an “amusement park” that includes a paper rollercoaster that cascades down the sofa arm. It loops to the coffee table and onto a “ trail that leads to the snack bar” on the opposite end of the room. In the family room, Sponge Bob has a diorama of his pineapple under the sea. The pineapple pops up, includes cut out doors that lead to bedrooms, and of course little matching cut out people that I have been instructed not to touch or move.

In Ashlyn’s bedroom her closet is full of taped on pictures, stories requiring editing, and an endless supply of possible illustrations for her many “chapter books”. I’ve purchased binders, folders, and supplied boxes to store all these creations. When the craft cupboard started overflowing with her construction paper creations I lost it. I am officially lost in a construction paper world and need a map to find my way out!

Tom and Kyle occasionally have sock wars, with sock balls as missiles. These missiles have knocked over pictures, upset my “pretties” on tables, and have found me as one of their targets. A sock missile is still lost on top of our built in shelves….I see it every time I walk by upstairs, but have no means to get it down. The other morning, a sock weapon was waiting for me, proudly displayed by one of two sock soldiers at the bottom of the banister.

BUT, this time, before I went into my “lets not mess up the house, and I want everything put away” lecture, I remembered a newspaper article written by one of my favorite humorists, the late Erma Bombeck. She wrote it almost 40 years ago, but the words still fit today. Read on:

No More Oatmeal Kisses ~ January 29, 1969

One of these days, you’ll shout, “Why don’t you kids grow up and act your age!” And they will. Or, “You guys get outside and find yourselves something to do…and don’t slam the door!” And they won’t.

You’ll straighten up the boys’ bedrooms neat and tidy: bumper stickers discarded, bedspread tucked in smooth, toys displayed on the shelves. Hangers in the closet. Animals caged. And you’ll say out loud, “Now I want it to stay this way.” And it will.

You’ll prepare a perfect dinner with a salad that hasn’t been picked to death and a cake with no finger traces in the icing, and you’ll say, “Now there’s a meal for company.” And you’ll eat it alone.

You’ll say, “I want complete privacy on the phone. No dancing around. No demolition crews. Silence! Do you hear me?” And you’ll have it.

No more plastic tablecloths stained with spaghetti. No more bedspreads to protect the sofa from damp bottoms. No more gates to stumble over at the top of the basement steps. No more clothespins under the sofa. No more playpens to arrange a room around.

No more anxious nights under a vaporizer tent. No more sand on the sheets or Popeye movies in the bathroom. No more iron on patches, rubber bands for ponytails, tight boots, or wet knotted shoestrings.

Imagine. A lipstick with a point on it. No baby sitter for New year’s Eve. Washing only once a week. Seeing a streak that isn’t ground. Having your teeth cleaned without a baby on y our lap.

No PTA meetings. No car pools. No blaring radios. No one washing her hair at 11 o’clock at night. Having your own roll of Scotch tape.

Think about it. No more Christmas presents out of toothpicks and library paste. No more sloppy oatmeal kisses. No more tooth fairy. No giggles in the dark. No knees to heal, no responsibility.

Only a voice crying, “Why don’t you grow up?” and the silence echoing, “I did.”

Maybe the roller coaster, the cut out people, and all the drawings should stay put. And just maybe, the socks will stay...for one more day.


Kim said...

I loved this post Denise and I agree wholeheartedly!

Keep on enjoying those little wonderful things that make your family the amazing people they are!

Kim said...

I've read this before by Erma Bombeck (she was always a favorite with the women in my family) and find myself choking up at the bittersweet truth of it...

kim l.