Children are just HARD on things. Or maybe just mine are. Toys, books, and some clothes leave our house only one way: in a body bag. It's part of our room-cleaning ritual with the kids to make a small pile of things they've broken next to the door to be thrown away. I have a pile of books on my nightstand that have been "loved to pieces". In a parallel universe where I have free time I'd try to fix them, or at least order replacements. Books bother me the least because I know the wear and tear is caused by little fingers that are working on their fine motor skills. Things that are climbed on and destroyed after I've already warned really gets to me. Deep breath.
Yesterday I had just finished saying "Don't stand on that bin, you're going to break it!" when Devon circled back to do it again. Yep, it broke. After I finished lecturing Devon, I looked down at Melina, who was enjoying cuddle time in my lap. She had worked a thread loose on my shirt and was picking off the beadwork and eating the beads.
That's a pretty good example of what things have been like at our house lately. All three kids are reaching the stage where they need to learn enough responsibility to be left unattended for a few minutes and amuse themselves while Mommy occupies herself elsewhere. This is something that all families go through, but usually with just one child at a time. Teaching all three that they are expected to follow the same rules even when Mommy's in the bathroom helping someone else has been a challenge. I'm trying to keep my eyes on the end result and imagine all the things I'll be able to do when my kids can be in another room of the house and not immediately endangering themselves or the house. I'll be able to cook something more than a quesadilla! I might read something while the kids play!
Carrie: Mina, I'm really sad.
Melina: Oh no, you poor thing. What is wrong, Carrie?
Carrie: I really just want my Mommy!
Carrie: I want my Mommy to give me a big hug and go an lay with me in her bed.
Melina: Come here and lay in my bed!
Carrie: Okay, that would make me feel better. But I still really want my Mommy!
Melina: Don't worry, Mommy will come back to check on us soon.
Carrie: I really hope so, Mina.
Melina: She will.
Carrie, I'm sad. Hold me, Mina....
My old phone is now the Special Devon Phone. All his apps are loaded on it. All my apps have been deleted. He can take pictures and videos to his heart's content. Best of all, if he asks Mommy to help he can call Grandpa and Grammy on Facetime. When he doesn't ask for help, there are problems. Mommy's contact list is in the cloud and can't be taken off either phone, so he's just as likely to call someone random as he is Grandpa. Or call at 5:30 in the morning Pacific time, as he did this morning. Thankfully, Grandpa is a very early riser and very forgiving when it comes to his grandson.
It looks virtually unchanged, with a small dent on the side and a trunk that won't line up to shut, but the repair bill was too large to justify saving the car. Thankfully, the other insurance company admitted fault and is already processing our payout. Say a prayer that we get top dollar, if you think of it, as we're being offered around 6k when we've priced the same car at 9k.
So, sometime this week we'll be saying goodbye to the car we brought baby Devon home from the hospital in and looking for a new car. We're trying to see this as God's timing rather than a huge, unwanted financial setback. After the long winter we could see the wisdom of driving something with a higher profile and all-wheel drive to work. Maybe something in a bright color that would be very visible in the snow. Or maybe when you're stopped to let other cars go the other way on the one-lane tunnel.