Ahhhh...the sounds and sights of springtime. The TV commercials make spring time look and sound like this magical, warm fuzzy awakening of the earth and all of its splendor. Flowers blooming, birds chirping, sweet green grass and tree buds popping up everywhere. Beautiful, right?
That is a load of crap. Spring is brown, muddy, ugly and it is a leaving a pile of sand in my house. Yes, that sounds negative. We try to have this blog be a place of positive, happy feelings. Screw happy. I am tired of sweeping. I know that "to see the rainbow, one must endure the rain" and all of that poetic stuff, but this is one of the worst times of year. The winter left-overs are just plain ugly. I guess I am speaking from a Mid-Western standpoint. I live in the frozen tundra where 9 months out of the year, it is either totally acceptable to be wearing Elmer Fudd style hats, snow pants and boots.....or flip flops. You never know what weather you are going to get. The snow has melted...except all of that nasty "snirt" still piled along highways and in parking lots....you know that snow mixed with dirt that never seems to melt until July?? The melted snow is a form of renewal. The spring "reveal" as a friend of mine called it is helping my kids find all of the stuff they lost in the fall. So far, we have found
-a baseball glove (not ours thankfully otherwise my husband would have had their heads)
- a shovel
- a basketball
- two sleds and a snowboard that we spent MOST of December and January looking for (handy to find them now when there is no snow, don't you think?)
-a furry frozen lump that I am assuming USED to be an animal, but after my kids discovered it and were poking it with the shovel that they also found, I freaked out and made everyone come inside. I made sure my husband took care of it before it defrosted (turns out it was just a squirrel) Whew!
I know that makes my yard sound like a junk yard, and it did sort of look like that until we cleaned it up. But that is my point. Now that it is springtime, I not only have to clean inside, but outside too?? That blows. And "outside" keeps finding its way "inside". Like I said, I am constantly battling sand. Sand is the not-so-welcome reminder that parks have re-opened (although this sand is left-over from the plows, it is like the city-workers way of saying "No matter the season, we are bound and determined to mess up your house, car and washing machine). With the warm weather, everyone and everything is coming out of hibernation.
And then there are the wet, sloppy puddles that are like kid magnets. My kids cannot resist a good puddle. And honestly, why should they? Go ahead I guess. Jump, splash and stomp to your heart's desire. Just take off your stuff on the front porch. My 7 year old looked at me like I had lost my marbles when I told him to get undressed outside. He tried to come in the house with only his boots and socks off. "No!" I said "Take everything off, you are soaking wet." His look of anger/embarrassment was only assumed. I didn't actually get to see it because he dashed through the front door and up to the shower so fast, I only saw the blur of underwear. His socks and pants were frozen to the front porch the next morning. So then we of course have to swap out that wet/frozen gear for fresh gear for the school day, only to have that fresh stuff come home sopping wet and smelling like....well, what is that smell? Yikes. They are damn lucky I don't turn the hose on their smelly little carcasses right there in the front yard. All I know is that my kids are getting a bath every night because that springtime "outside" smell reminds me of wet dog. And I don't particularly like cuddling with "wet dog". Ahhh...spring. And every morning we go through the check list "Where is your coat, where are your mittens, where is your hat...." And I am mostly met with blank stares because at some point they took off all of the above items. Because, it was cold enough in the morning to warrant all of that gear, but too warm for it by the time they got home. So those items are reclaimed again at school in the ever-growing Lost and Found box...most of which I seem to own.
But here, you never know. It is like the kiss of death to put away the snow pants and boots, because you know that winter has a good chance of rearing it's ugly head again...and then here come the damn plows with their sand trucks again. And more melting snow means more puddles which mean more kids smelling like wet dog. Someone bring me a bouquet of tulips quick! But truly, I know that this all gives way to green grass, barbeques, and baseball season. Spring is the rocky road we must travel to get to summer. I tried to remind myself of that when I found the resident princess (nope, not me) holding something gently in her little curled up wet mitten. When I asked her what she had, she slapped a small dead mouse onto the counter. "I found it in the yard. He is sleeping and I am going to wake him up and keep him." Inside I was screaming WHAT THE F- IS THAT??!! CALL ANIMAL CONTROL!! CALL THE REALTOR! WE'RE MOVING BACK TO THE CITY!! WTF WTF WTF!!! GET IT OFF OF THERE - NO WAIT - DON'T TOUCH IT!! OH GOD...WE ALL NEED SHOTS OR PENICILLIN OR SOMETHING!! God and all of my angels must have been watching over me, because I had an out of body experience when I gently and calmly held it together and explained to her that he is dead and not a pet, so we have to throw him away and maybe it would be a good time to wash her hands and feed the goldfish. So I helped her remove the first 7 layers of her skin and throw her gloves away. Then I scoured my counters with a brillo pad and 8 gallons of bleach. Since the carcass had touched a food preparation surface, I decided to go outside a rally the troops. We were going out for dinner. On my way outside, I followed muddy footprints, tripped over wet rain boots and pile of wet socks and mittens. I found my cherubs and loaded them into the car. One of them had wet pants (from outside, not urine), two of them emptied their boots onto my car floor and all three smelled like maple syrup and wet animal. Lovely. Ahhh springtime....