well, let me back up. i managed to scare the shit out of oliver this afternoon. as a five year old, he doesn't really possess the skills to understand the importance of safety restraints and little things like not distracting the driver by hollering or fighting with his sister or kicking the driver in the head or throwing his shoes at the driver. and he recently discovered how to hold up that little lever at the front to release the belt and he's been doing that and we were halfway to somewhere today when he said, "mommy! you forgot to tighten my seatbelt!" and i was like, "YOU AREN'T SUPPOSED TO LOOSEN YOUR SEATBELT." and i had to tighten it on the fly and i said he should remind me to show him videos of crash tests when we got home.
and he remembered. and i did. just two. the first was a british one, which left him convinced the dummy infant ill-placed in the front seat was actually driving the test car and that's what had caused the accident and that took some deciphering and explaining. there was a three year old dummy hanging around and facing the rear package tray, like he was looking back through time at the 70s. the infant crushed its head into certain death and the three year old flew like an eagle and busted up the windshield. and then we watched another where the child was in a booster seat with the belt going under its arm instead of over the shoulder and it flippity flopped about in slow motion.
and boy did this set oliver off. he was genuinely freaked out and he doesn't usually get freaked out by that stuff. but he was kind of wide-eyed and teeth-chattery and said, okay! that's it! and i spent the next several hours discussing how our bodies can take some degree of flippity flopping and what it feels like to be sore and defensive driving and turn signals and brake lights and pointing out the six air bags on the new car and the five point safety harnesses and not driving directly between two other cars and looking in mirrors and out windows and hesitating before entering an intersection when the light turns green. i accidentally said whiplash really only happens to old people he said he doesn't have to worry about that because he's young and i'm young, and i thanked him, and he said god forbid mema and papa ever got in a wreck because they're REALLY OLD. and i guess that was like fireworks in the sky spelling out how i should tell him about the time papa rolled the conversion van two and a half times on the way to vegas and tricia got wrapped up in mema's foam pallets covered in polyester fabric, but i forgot.
and then i think he enjoyed pointing out how he was freaked out and would like to make sure to never watch one of those crash videos again because, hey boy, that sure scared him. and i told him with the afternoon of instruction he had just received, he was almost ready to become a driver himself.
we had the good fortune of passing a couple on a scooter in the middle of a lane in the whole foods subterranean parking garage and he was easily convinced he never wanted to get on a motorcycle.
during our post-video drive, i told oliver i was going to take him on a little surprise. after pumping gas, i rolled us up to the car wash entrance with a premium code. we waited for the car in front to finish and i looked at violet and saw kind of a look of terror spilled across her face.
we went in and that thing started up and i think i was catching oliver shielding his face, despite having done this with brian in the past. violet looked like she was going to throw up which is pretty much the same look i had for three hours last tuesday during the tornado matinee. and i thought, oh fuck, so much for that surprise. i got all montessori on them and played up how fun and not scary that car scrubbing work was, but she just gripped on to my hand and wouldn't let go.
frankly, i'm surprised both of them were able to get to sleep tonight.
earlier, i dragged them out to north park mall to find a tank top and modesty shorts to go with violet's new skirt. i was finding these things at american apparel, god bless my soul. oliver stumbled across this tub of canvas belts and wanted the white one, but it was too small. so then he wanted the mint one and i said it didn't really go with his clothes, though it just happened to match the dinosaur on the ASK ME ABOUT DINOSAURS shirt he was wearing. then he wanted the hot pink one and honestly, that still wouldn't really match his wardrobe. the yellow was neon and would clash with his boots. so my five year old is on an american apparel call list for a white belt.
i took them for apple juice boxes, since no one had exploded yet. which means they would explode immediately after juice boxes and they did when violet realized we were headed for the elevator button and she usually loses out on the dash and i told oliver to let her go and he could do the one inside and he dashed after her and it was pretty super frantic there and i also think she's the one who pushed it but OH HOLY SHIT did she melt way the fuck down and i had to do that walk all the way from the elevator to the parking garage through dillard's men's department with all these people giving looks like they're oh so fucking glad THEY don't have kids or MY kid would never do that or something equally disdainful feeling. one couple did say i seemed patient. well, at least right now... they added. mommy took a little extra drive with her soy latte since the children had bankrupted her energy stores.
during oliver's conscious siesta, he eventually leaked out to where i was and i let him watch ina garten knock out an apple pie, which gave him ideas. i napped for a glorious ten minutes. during the sour cream mashed potatoes and oven-baked fried chicken. then paula deen came on, giving us the opportunity to discuss diabetes and how two cups of cheese on your personal portion of alfredo seafood nachos is too much, as is an entire stick of butter in your pot of rice and he thought paula and bubba were pretty disgusting and getting fat.
brian called around quitting time to tell me he had a 6:30 accupuncture appointment, thank you very much.
after he stumbled in, meekly and smartly thanking me for watching the kids ALL DAY (including the handful of hours he slept in this morning), we painted wooden easter eggs. the easter bunny is going to come into our home to steal them, along with the whole foods snack bar clementines they forgot they had begged for while i was sliding chocolate bars right under their noses and into my bag without them even noticing and that rabbit is going to show way the fuck up in tyler with those things. SURPRISE. no wonder they don't want to have their photo taken with him tomorrow.
ps: our fridge is a piece of shit. the little plastic bars that hold condiments in on the door shelves like to spontaneously disengage on occasion and the bottom one did so tonight. in addition to tetra packs of soy milk and hemp milk and mustard and worcestershire sauce, a nearly full large bottle of tamari came flying out of there like a salty kamikaze aircraft covered in glutamic acid and the bottom busted out and it is still smelling like tamari town in here. i can hardly wait to see who it is who will find the tiny piece of glass with their foot.