We have four bedrooms in this house. Ken and I, predictably and selfishly, have claimed one of them (the one with an attached bathroom- we’re no dummies!) and the other three are for the minions.
Since we have only one girl, Lotus finds herself in the enviable position of being the only person in the house without a roommate. If this newest baby decides to break the boy streak we’ve been on lately, Lotus will eventually know the joys of shared bedroomhood. If the baby stubbornly insists on carrying the Y chromosome, then we’re going to have to do some room reconfigurations for about the millionth time.
Currently, we have Gabriel and The Jude, the four year old and three year old, shacked up together. They’re only 15 months apart, so we figured they’d be in the same developmental boat in regards to bathroom, sleep, and nightlight requirements.
They also apparently have the same food requirements, since for the past two months, they’ve been waking up extremely early in the morning (think: the earliest a morning can be without it being last night), sneaking down to the kitchen, and grabbing anything that could remotely appeal to the discerning palate of the under-5 crowd (Gabriel’s already got a history of doing things like this). I’ve found the sugar bowl in their room, stashed under covers, its contents empty and only a telltale sticky graininess left on the floors to give them away. I’ve found hot chocolate K-cups, the tin foil covering gnawed off with rat-like precision, contents emptied, and a vague chocolately smear left on walls. A few days after Valentine’s Day, they found the bag of Tootsie Roll Pops that I’d gotten to make them sucker bouquets. There were 12 suckers left, and they whisked these away to their room in the middle of the night, stripped off all the wrappers, and proceeded to argue over who got which sucker.
Ken and I have spent hours desperately brainstorming ways to thwart the midnight pantry raids. We can’t lock their door, since both boys use the bathroom at least once during the night, unless one of them is sleepwalking, mistakenly thinks he’s reached the bathroom, and ends up peeing in his closet instead (true story). Baby gates at the top of the stairs are useless, since the boys simply deliver a gate-destroying karate chop to the obstacle. A door alarm would only wake the two year old, and then I’d have even more trouble on my hands. I’d consider getting a rabid guard dog, but I hate pets.
Besides which, I know that none of it, none of it would work if there were bananas in the house.
Bananas are like crack to my children. Fresh produce of any kind (with the sole exception of eggplant) is extremely popular around here, but bananas have mythic status to the Donaldson children. I dream of a day in the distant future when I “have” to make banana bread to use up the overripe bananas no one’s eaten. One day….
I can’t even pass the banana stand at the grocery store without an immediate, loud, and highly noticeable ruckus from the kids. You’d think they were these poor scurvy-plagued waifs who never get fresh food, by the way they wail. And we get dang bananas. Every time. And we’re talking about a good five pounds of bananas, not like, three of four individual fruits. Not that it matters. One fruit or five pounds, they’re all gone in the same amount of time. Which is to say, within 48 hours of them hitting my cart.
Less, if I forget to hide them.
The only thing we’ve come up with to stem the nocturnal foraging is hiding every single thing that could be even mildly edible to small boys. And since they are small boys, their idea of “edible” is a good deal more liberal than yours or mine is. So Ken and I usually close out our day with a round of “If You Were Gabriel or The Jude, Would You Eat This?” If the answer is even a possible yes, away it goes.
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