But today? It's been a different story.
My kids woke up at the crack of dawn - around six. I've been trying, to no avail obviously, to persuade them to sleep later ever since one of my friends told me that her kids sleep until like 9:30 or 10. Heh ... must be nice! (In my best "Napoleon Dynamite" voice: "Lucky!")
I went to bed unusually late last night, and drooled so much that I kept waking myself up (WTF?). Needless to say, I wasn't exactly alert and chipper when I dragged myself out of bed this morning. So when my boys went into Colin's room to play, I decided not to look a gift horse in the mouth - they were being quiet, they weren't squabbling, and the house wasn't on fire, so whatever they were doing in there was good enough for me. I came into the dining room to make my morning "rounds" on the computer while they were sufficiently occupied.
WHY do I NEVER remember - or always choose to forget - the Golden Rule of Motherhood: if your kids are being quiet, they are probably up to something they shouldn't be.
I should have known something was amiss when Colin yelled, "Mommy, I'm using the clippers as tweezers!" I should have put two and two together. The fingernail clippers go in the hall closet. Colin had the clippers - therefore he had to have been in the hall closet. But it was early, and I was tired, and I didn't even give it much thought.
"Where did you get the clippers?" I asked.
"I don't know," he called. "Texas Roadhouse or something."
(For anyone unfamiliar with Texas Roadhouse, it's a restaurant.)
It was one of those Mommy "whatever" moments. You know, when your kid has something you really don't like for him to play with ... but you're getting a few moments' peace, so whatever.
I went back to my computer.
In a couple minutes, I heard Cameron crying. This in itself isn't unusual, especially when he's playing with his brother. But it sounded especially urgent. I had just gotten up and started back there to investigate when he came running toward me, bawling ... and reeking of ...
Yep, that's what it was. Colin had somehow managed to climb to the upper shelves of the closet and retrieve the bottle of spray-on sunscreen. And he had sprayed it in his baby brother's face!
Poor Cammie was crying, his face and right eye red and splotchy, his hair plastered to the side of his head, snot and spit running out of his nose and mouth in a river. I felt terrible, like the worst, least vigilant mother on the planet. I immediately rushed him to the sink and started dousing his face with cool water, soothing his hysterics as best I could while I was practically drowning him.
But then I realized - the sunscreen was waterproof. The water just beaded and rolled off his skin. So if water didn't work, what on earth could I use?
This is why, at 7 AM, I was standing at the kitchen counter wiping my baby boy's face ... with Tucks pads. You know, the ones you use to soothe hemorrhoids? Yeah. The hospital provided them to me when I gave birth, and they've just been sitting there unused - until this morning. But I figured they'd be perfect: they're soaked with witch hazel, which is an astringent, but which is also gentle. And it worked. As for his eye, I just flushed it out with water ... I didn't have much of a choice.
Colin, in the meantime, had been banished to his bedroom until I could deal with the situation at hand and figure out a proper means of punishment. Once I had Cameron settled down and (reasonably) cleaned off, I went in there.
First things first. "Did you spray it anywhere else besides on your brother?" I asked.
After a bit of hesitation: "Yes."
"... On my penis."