two green pails on ground
Photo by hitesh choudhary on

My sister had her youngest child a few months before I had my first child. These two children were inseparable. They did everything together and were best friends when they were young. My daughter was a talker and she would decipher what her cousin was saying and for whatever reason we truly believed that she could understand him. For all we know she was just telling us what she wanted and we were like “Here you both are! The juice that you have clearly been asking for!” and he was like “I wanted food. Oh well this is good too!”

They would also get into mischief together, which as cousins is probably the best memories to have. “Remember the time we…..?” But when you are the parents of children such as these the memories are more like “Oh my Gosh, how did we not notice that the children did that.”

For instance my children recently told me this story: The oldest cousin and his brother were fooling around and accidentally kicked a hole in the wall. Then all of the kids, curious as they were, took turns shoving things into the hole to see where it led to. They would run to the basement and yell “Ready!” Then a golf ball would be sent down the hole. The kids in the basement raced around to see if they could find it. They didn’t find it….but this didn’t stop them! They then would send pennies, pencils, army men toys, matchbox cars and the list goes on and on and on. They never did locate the lost items and then when their father patched up the hole in the wall the kids were disappointed for the both the loss of those items and the loss of the opportunity to find out where the hole led to.

Another game they would play was pile the bottom of the stairs with every stuffed animal that they owned and jump off the stairs to see how far they could jump. When someone got hurt they were out of the game. “Little Timmy, you got a black eye, you’re out!” “Little Suzy, you knocked a tooth out, you’re out!” “Nuh-uh! My tooth was already loose, it doesn’t count!”

Where were my sister and I? We were happily talking with each other as adults. Nothing feels better than having adult conversations when you are a stay at home mom of little children. The real truth is that we could only talk to each other because as stay at home moms we had lost the real ability of talking like adults. It was adult-lite conversation and not at all relatable to our non-mom friends. It was more like “Holy shit did you see that new show Spongebob? That is a great show for the kids. He is such a delightful little character!”

“Yes, but don’t let your kids watch South Park, it looks like a children’s show, but it definitely is not!”

“I heard a new song on kids bop yesterday and I am in love. It is so catchy!”

“I am not a fan of those diapers they leak, I bought them because they were both on sale and I had a coupon and I am regretting my decision. I sent them over to the in-laws for when the kids go over there!”

Now that you know the scenario of how things go down when I would take my kids to my sister’s, I can carry on with the story. My son was a toddler and her youngest and my oldest were preschool aged and we took the kids outside for some good ole fashioned fresh air. She and I were sitting on the steps talking and I had my son with us. He was playing with her middle child and I was so thankful for that. I was exhausted and needed to talk to someone who knew how to spell. Because apparently this is a phase you go through as a parent…you go through the talking in spelling only….or “Letter speak” if you will.

“Last night their father came home and he was d-r-u-n-k and I was all like you son of a b-i-t-c-h! I almost kicked his a-s-s o-u-t!”

“I was so upset I ate a whole gallon of i-c-e-c-r-e-a-m!”

“I think our house is h-a-u-n-t-e-d. I actually saw a g-h-o-s-t-b-o-y!”

“Did you spell ice cream?” middle son looks at us.

“No, I spelled vegetables. I ate all of my vegetables! Run along and play with my baby he needs you!”

“That was close! Also I’m sorry but your child may not do well on his next spelling test if either ice-cream or vegetables are on there.”

So as my sister and I were spelling at each other we hear her neighbor shriek and yell “Ladies! Ladies! You should see what they did to my car! Come quick!”

I’m going to honest I did not want to go over and look at what they did to her car. Also if I am being completely honest I didn’t even know they were even over by her car. And if I am going to be totally upfront I thought both “how bad can it be?” and “Holy fucking cockballs how fucking bad is this going to be?” I looked at my sister with this look like “It’s your neighbor, you have to go see what our kids just did to her car.”

She looks at me and grimaces because we have been sisters for a very long time and she knows what my look meant. I then picked up my baby as protection. Because apparently I am not above using a small child as a shield. “You wouldn’t yell at a young mother holding her baby, would you?” Or “Please don’t sue, diapers are expensive because the ones that I bought that was both on sale and had a coupon was more like a piss repellent than a helpful absorption pillow… So, you know, you really shouldn’t sue me! I am broke!”

As I let my sister walk over and take full responsibility for our kids’ actions I watched while holding my baby. Her middle child ran over to see what they had done. So first you see the neighbor, who is an older woman with grey hair, with this horrified look on her face. She is both appalled and frustrated! My sister’s middle child is bemused and laughing. He is very young too, probably in kindergarten. The two culprits are keeping themselves out of view, because if we saw them, it would be a clue as to what exactly they had done to this woman’s car.

My sister walks over cautiously and slow to take a look at the side of the car that is hidden from view of the steps. I stand being the coward with my baby shield and watching my sister for signals to flee. Don’t worry I would take my baby with me. I will start a new life. My name will be something exotic like “Valerie” and I will take up the tambourine (which is like playing the spoons) and I will live a quiet life as a gypsy somewhere on the coast.

As I was fantasizing about my escape, I see my sister slowly turn towards the damage and also facing me. Her eyes were those of both disbelief and pure hysteria. She is trying desperately not to laugh. I want to laugh. Laughing is my favorite. Maybe they decorated the car with puppies and stuffed animals and hearts. Maybe it wasn’t a shriek of horror but a shriek of delight. Maybe this elderly woman is overwhelmed by the thoughtfulness of our perfect little angels. I walk over holding my baby because maybe it is actually not any of these things at all. It probably isn’t.

As I approach the car, which is a large car and the color of burnt orange. It’s an old person’s car, I first see the two little perpetrators standing by a large paint bucket. They are holding sticks that are covered in mud, and they are covered in mud and the bucket is half full of mud. They both look guilty as fuck and they both have mud caked uni-brows and mustaches. As I turn holding my baby close to me I see that the kids have smeared mud all over the side of this poor woman’s car. The mirror has mud. The window has mud. And this poor woman standing there in her best outfit to go to work in is now going to be late for work because of our two little assholes.

“Ummm? Yes I am going to be late because two little fuckers gave my car a mud bath. Also I may be searching for a new place to live!”

Her son, ever so charmingly asks “What? You don’t like pooparoonies?”

I busted out laughing because I am always on the verge of bursting out laughing. My sister turns to look away from me because she has to be the adult now. I stand there looking at the kids laughing my ass off because I am helpful like that. When I get my composure I say to the children “Let’s go get something to wash off the pooparoonies!” I then laugh again because where did they even get this word?

The elderly woman looks at me with anger in her eyes and says “I don’t want the children to wash my car! They are babies!”

I looked at her and was like ‘but I’m holding a baby! do you not see that i have a baby in my arms?’

While my sister and I get punished for what our children have done we both say “What? You don’t like pooparoonies?”

To this day my sister and I talk about the pooparoonies and how hilarious it was that day.

Moral of my story: Children get into mischief and they really should be watched more closely. However, we could always hear them talking and they were making happy noises so we totally thought they were good. Never did we think they were making a bucket of mud to lather all over the neighbor’s car. My sister’s neighbor shared a driveway with them…so it was all on the same property. Regardless of those happy noises, maybe check in to make sure your kids aren’t giving the neighbor’s car the ole “Pooparoonie” treatment. Also don’t be a coward and use your baby as a shield. That is totally inappropriate. Learn from my mistakes. Also “it is your neighbor it is your problem” is not a valid argument apparently. I got scolded and punished as well.

Until next time 🙂

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