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Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Adventures in Babysitting Day 4--Dirt Cheap!  

A thin layer of dust covers the main floor of Ryan and Emily's house. I sweep the kitchen three times a day to get rid of rocks that pour out as kids remove their shoes after walking through the door. "Forget the carpet and keep your shoes on," I think. Holey socks shift from white to brownish red. Boys that are used to wearing their socks all day, to bed, and attempt to keep them on the next day stand no chance now--the socks are toast! My albino children have suddenly developed a tan. My kids are wearing their cousin's clothes, because theirs are all in the laundry. And bathtime? Let's just say it has become an urgent matter. The culprit? DIRT!

Kitty corner to the backyard stands a tall, tall dirt pile on the lot where the Amish builders are completing a new house. The dirt is messy, gritty, and seems to stick to everything, probably because of the heat and humidity. Do I care? Not in the least! Bring it on. I'll take the mess, the laundry, and the sweeping anyday. Why? All I can say is built-in babysitter. The kids love to play out there. Who knew that such a basic element as dirt could keep them happy for hours upon hours three days in a row.

But, sunshine can only last for so long. The clouds were bursting with moisture yesterday afternoon and it was only a matter of time before they exploded. Sure enough! It started raining last night until early this morning and the dirt pile has turned into more of a muddy substance and you wouldn't believe the shift in atmosphere. Fighting. Restlessness. The kids are not vocalizing what I hear them screaming, "Give me back my dirt pile."

So, the real babysitter is back and has to be quick on her feet to organize an activity to replace the Mary Poppins of all sitters--dirt!

What next?

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