Let me be clear that my house is far from a China Shop. We believe in durable, kid-friendly, washable interiors. Now that we've completed our home study, it's also extremely safe. We have a hideous baby gate around the fireplace (too bad we waited until the day after Hudson tried to warm his fleece blanket directly on the fireplace. Much smoke, a hole filled blanket, and tears later, we think the lesson was learned), we have a locked medicine cabinet, outlet covers galore, and a fire escape plan in place (Hudson is aching to try it by pushing a screen out of a window).
Hudson, my four year old bull, is not intentionally reckless (usually) and not malicious (mostly) but things have been happening in his wake.
Yesterday in an attempt to find a remote control car, he quickly dumped out 3 large bins of toys. After they were strewn about the house I reminded him that every bin dumped needs to be picked up by the dumpee. "No fair! It's too much! Argh!"
Most of the time I help the kids when they willingly clean, but he has been warned about the massive dumping of toys often in the past week. "Sorry Hudson, it's all you. When you are finished picking up you may choose something else to do."
It took a half hour for him to complete the task between distractions, giving up and laying prostrate on the floor for sympathy, and the whining...oh, the whining.
As soon as he was done he sauntered into the kitchen where Darla was doing a craft with beads. In an attempt to catch her attention and snatch a bag of beads off the counter, he spilled them all.
Another half an hour later the job was done and he was exhausted. Somewhere in there he broke an arrow (more tears). I sent him outside to play (but soon had to discipline him for peeing in the gravel where kids play instead of the designated 'pee tree').
This morning I was hoping for a fresh start for my bull. I was in my room applying makeup when Darla's motherly voice was heard, "Now look! HUDSON! You broke it!"
Do I even want to know?
After a few deep breaths I came into the living room to find a lamp broken on the floor.
"Hudson was climbing on the half wall and being an animal and he knocked that lamp and your computer and he broke it! I know it's broke!"
A broken lamp is expected with a four year old, even in a "child proof" house. Unfortunately it's the third one he's broken this year. The first one was as he reenacted the scene from Lady and the Tramp where the Siamese cats destroy Jim Dear & Darling's house. Were they not thinking of pre-school boys when they made that movie!? Fortunately I stopped him before he ripped my curtains.
The second lamp was broken while innocently stacking books on a nightstand and knocking it over.
Now this one.
More unfortunately, I have yet to replace the others. I now have 3 lamps on my list.
He went to play the drums and I made some lunch. When I peeked my head around the corner I saw him with a drumstick in one hand eyeing the side of the piano (might it make a resounding thump if hit by a drumstick?) and promptly sent him outside again.
I love raising boys. I know that the Lord often uses little wild at heart boys to teach their mothers to hold things (like china?) loosely, to ensure that we have spaces for creative play, to keep us thinking outside the box, and to make us fall in love with muscles again.
I just hope it stays summer forever because while my house remains little, my bull will not... and I can't quite imagine a winter's worth of bucking.