A couple months ago I purchased my first laptop computer. (I got a MacBook Pro… love it!). The reason wasn’t because my old desktop PC was performing badly or that I needed a built-in webcam (although it is pretty sweet).
Nope. I needed it so I could keep track of our kids better.
Our desktop PC was in our finished basement. I thought it was the perfect place for it: out of the way but in the place where the kids would be most of the time since their toys are down there. I could check my email and Facebook and investment portfolio all while the kids happily played with Barbies and dump trucks nearby.
I was wrong.
The kids actually want to be anywhere in the house that I am not. I mean, how are you going to get 20 Cars band-aids on if Dad can hear you open up the hall closet? Or how can you eat a bag of chocolate chips if Dad is in the kitchen?
When I would drag the kids downstairs so I could see the latest Facebook updates, I would soon notice an eerie quiet… the kids had escaped upstairs! After pulling myself away from the screen, I usually found them involved in some sort of mischief.
I decided I had better get a laptop and plop it down right in the middle of the house: the kitchen. This way I could easily see, or at least hear, what the children were up to no matter where in the house they were.
No more mischief! Right?
I was happily typing emails on my beautiful new laptop at the kitchen table the other day while Ben, age 4 and Rachel, age 2, were busy playing in the basement. I smiled to myself as I heard their giggles from what must have been a cute little game they had made up and were playing. When it was time to go pick up their 2 older sisters from school, I closed my laptop and headed downstairs.
That’s when I saw the light on in the bathroom and noticed their giggles had a bit of an echo sound to them.
When I walked into the bathroom I saw the distorted figures of two little people behind the beveled glass doors of the shower.
I opened the shower door and saw the two happiest little toddlers who proclaimed with giant smiles, “Look Daddy! We’re ice skating!” Apparently they had poured an entire bottle of peach body wash all over each other and were “skating” around on the slick shower floor.
I was less than happy. Okay, I was furious! We had to leave in less than 5 minutes and I had two soap-soaked kids in the shower!
Without a word I turned the shower on. I washed and washed and washed and washed their hair to get the soap out. They were impossible to hang on to since they were covered in slippery soap and no matter how much I tried, globs of soap got in their eyes.
After doing my best to wash them off, I ran them upstairs, threw on their clothes and shuttled them out the door so we could get the older two from school.
For the next 2 days neither of them were allowed to leave my sight.
And my laptop got very lonely.