Thursday, October 16, 2008


I'm not a nervous person. I'm not paranoid over anything. I let my kids take the city bus. I leave my doors unlocked most of the time. I almost never lock my car. I let my kids walk to the canyon and play by the stream. I don't spend a lot of time worrying.

This week gave me a lot of reasons to worry. Let's start with Monday.

We've had a cold snap, and as luck would have it, our furnace went out. Fortunately, we have a wood stove and a pellet stove. I let Ammon stay home from school 'sick'. He had a headache, sore throat, and good grades. I'm merciful. He begged to be able to light a fire in the basement stove. I let him, and he built a roaring one. About 4 hours later, I decided to take a shower. Ammon was engrossed with some adventure on the computer and my little guy was wandering around amusing himself. As I stepped out of the shower, my little leprechaun came to me with his hands clamped over his mouth. "My wip caught on fire!" was all he said.
"Your wip?" I pried his hands from his mouth and saw that he had a pretty good blister forming on his top lip. I tried to get him to be more specific, but no luck. I couldn't figure out what he could have burned it on. Then I remembered the wood stove. I grabbed Ammon and we ran downstairs.
I couldn't believe what I saw. The stove's door was hanging open, and a burning log was balancing on the edge of the stove and the hearth. A few inches under the log was a comforter all bunched up. Then I looked on the rug and found a long stick that had the top 5 inches charred. I could tell from this evidence exactly what had happened. He'd used a hot pad to open the door, and a log had come tumbling out. He'd grabbed a stick to try to get it back in. The stick caught on fire, a pretty good one by the look of it, and he'd brought it up to his mouth to blow out. The flames burned his lip and he'd dropped it. Miraculously, he'd been able to blow that fire out.

Can you believe it? You'd think nothing else that could happen this week would top that, right?

Until today.

I had an appointment to schlep one of my kids to this morning, so the house was filthy when I finally made it home at about 10 am. I let my little guy play alone in the front yard while I cleared the table and wiped it. I joined him in the front yard on my way to empty the trash. Up by the road, I could see a man about six houses down, walking around some mailboxes. Being more than my share of nosy, I scrutinized him. He saw me watching and struck a casual 'I'm not up to no good' pose against the mailbox of an elderly couple from our church. I decided to go call them and make sure they knew him. I gathered up my little one and started to walk inside. The only problem was, the guy was no longer standing still, he was walking toward me! I came inside and walked straight to the phone and called the police dispatch. There was still a part of me that would feel too stupid calling 911 on some random guy out for a walk.
The dispatcher was calm and encouraging, asking for all the details. I'd barely begun, when the doorbell rang.
I peeked out the window and it was HIM! I frantically whispered this to the police lady, and she asked me if my door was locked. My heart dropped. It wasn't. I quietly set down the phone and tiptoed to the door. I locked it as silently as I could. I locked the kitchen door too and ran back to the phone. "Just so you know, the police are on their way.... What's he doing now? I looked again, and he was gone! I hadn't seen him leave, I had no idea which way he'd gone.
She thanked me for calling, and asked if I was calm enough to hang up. I'm always calm during the actual crisis, so I was fine. She told me some police would be by to talk to me soon. I hung up the phone and looked around.

Shoot! The house was a mess! I spent the next few minutes scrubbing egg yolk off my dining room benches and putting away all the scriptures on the couches.

In just a few minutes, a policeman was at my door. He had the best news ever: they caught the guy one block away, and he had his pockets full of stolen mail and credit cards. One officer told me he was a home-burgling meth addict "a freaking walking crime spree". Since I'd seen him at it, he obviously had some intentions here. He told the police he planned to get in my house by asking to use the bathroom. "As if this wasn't creepy enough!" the cop said.

So there you go. My house didn't burn down, my little guy just has a scab on his lip. I didn't get ravished and plundered by a meth-riddled criminal. Everything's fine, but I'm not sure if I feel less safe, or more so. I definitely feel protected through all this, and I'm very grateful.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


Have any of you accidentally caught your little guy's pee pee in a zipper?

Hell hath no fury, my friends, no fury at all like an injured three year old.

*All kinds of interesting and clever things have been going on in my house and it's driving me crazy. Blogger is not uploading any of my photos, so I'm out of luck. One of these days, when it works again, I hope I can remember all of it! *