We use A LOT of words in our household. Some would add we use too many. This is probably true. Rare is the occasion when we don’t know how each other feels. You’d think we were first generation Italian just without all the good food. Occasionally, the word pollution can be too much, but it can also be really funny.
My young adult, triplet sons are merciless when it comes to ragging on each other. They are so quick witted with comebacks that I struggle not to laugh out loud at their lightening quick, verbal assaults. It seems no subject matter is off limits either. I might cringe on occasion, but I do have to admit that they are very creative in their put downs. Too bad there isn’t a paying summer job for their exceptional talent.
One such occasion was Mother’s Day about a year ago. Our family went to a steak house for dinner and was waiting to order when one brother looked across the table at the other and made an annoying comment about his haircut. Without any expression, the recepient of the comment deadpanned, “What? I can’t hear you through your perm.”
They can be merciless in poking fun at me too. Mom jokes are a team effort. “Type A++” is their description of me due to my incessant house cleaning. I also get compared to the You Tube video of the son dressed up as a mom yelling at everyone to, “Throw everything away! Make our house look like no one lives here!” Also, long ago two words became bad in our home: the “f” word (which was “fat”) and the “o” word (which was “old”). They may say a lot of things about me, but I don’t like to hear either when they tease me.
Our elderly chihuahua isn’t spared the heat either. She’s a 14 year old, 9 pound rescue. Her sight has deteriorated to the point she occassionaly walks into trees. She also has trouble hearing so one son renamed her “Helen Keller.” She doesn’t seem to care.
Recently, when inquiring what the triplets wanted for their birthday, I mentioned possibly getting all three ear pods. One son immediately countered, “First of all, it’s Air Pods, and secondly, I’d rather get a telescope and just steal their’s.”
I often refer to my children’s father as the Pied Piper. He’s the Huck Finn type and proved it when he relocated our family outside city limits to the river. He said this way we’d avoid HOA violations because we weren’t “neighborhood people.”
Our new home was actually an old fishing cabin on a sandy creek. It had been added onto multiple times and I’d swear there wasn’t one square angle in the house. Gold speck counter tops, a blue toilet and matching cast iron tub weren’t exactly swoon worthy. I also noticed Elvis -era red linoleum in corners, painted paneling and SEVEN sliding glass doors. It wasn’t my dream house by any stretch. The property, however, was beautiful and offered a sandy bank along a creek for the children to explore, swim and play. He’d always wanted to live by the water and assured me that the children would benefit. Longer rides to town, a fixer upper, and multiple safety fences had me thinking otherwise. Somehow he convinced me we’d one day fix it up and we made the move.
Adventures were weekly conquests and the children ate them up. An example was the “wave pool.” Their dad put layers of visqueen in the back of his truck and filled it with water. Then he put all the kids in the back and drove them up and down our bumpy, dirt road to simulate waves. We looked like the Beverly Hillbillies but the kids got a wave pool, by gosh.
Another method of his childcare containment was the boat. It became our playpen during winter. We’d bundle the kids up and put life jackets on and go on long boat rides. This was nearly every Saturday. This kept them contained and happy (as long as nobody pushed anybody off their seat.)
One of their favorite water activities was the slip and slide. This was created by 50 yards of visqueen and a quart of Dawn dish liquid. My husband would lay the plastic sheeting down a sloping hill and run water to it with an extension hose. Our kids, their friends and a few parents would run, dive, and howl with laughter flying down the hill. Occasionally, he’d add hay bales to avoid people sliding into trees. This ritual became a yearly event.
Trips to “the chards” were another pastime. Unique to our creek were clay potters a century ago. That left pottery shards and jugs discarded along banks and submerged under water. My husband would pile kids in the canoe and paddle them way up the creek. He’d tell them he’d give $50 to whoever found an intact jug. LOTS of pottery pieces, or shards, have been discovered over the years and maybe two full jugs. Those are some of his prized possessions proudly displayed in our home today.
River life has been great raising our brood. Lots of fun memories and yes, we did eventually remodel. I don’t miss the blue toilet and got rid of every sliding glass door. Elvis no longer reigns in decor either.