May 15, 2020

saving Bird, never knowing what I will find: it's a way of life

A few weeks back I went down in the basement to find the bin of fabric that I have in the storage room.  Somehow I knew that I had the old puppet theater fabric.  

Mini came along.  We stood there and she started pointing.  I could not really include this in the pandemic quote post, because she was kind of speechless for a bit.   Just the pointing.  I thought she was pointing at a bin, and I was like:  

"No, it's in this bin.  I already pulled it down."

For some reason this reminds me of the scene from Airplane when the guy has the knife in his back and she starts dancing imitating his knife pointing movements.  Not at all the same, yet . . . 

"Big Bird" she finally said.

Not a great pic, but this is the Big Bird
 costume I made and if you look closely you
 can see the tiny ants having a party on his feathers.
most of my guys are stored in bins -
see Elmo here peering out of his bin?  Bird's
 body (in the background) is too big for
a bin.  His head piece is the
 part that was covered in ants -
 also not contained in a bin.
We had been finding stray ants in the study, which is above the storage room.  I followed her pointing and her Big Bird mumbling.  Swarms of ants were all over the top of the storage unit.  Like HUNDREDS.  

"Go get your father," I whimpered.  I don't do ants in the hundreds, if possible.  

People, it was unbelievable.  We dumped out a bin of out of season shoes that is stored in the storage room, and we shoved Big in there and took him outside and shook the hell out of him.  He may have lost a few feathers.  Then I sealed up the bin and left him on the porch for a few days, just to be sure.  

See how snug they are in their bin? 
The guys that come apart easily
enjoy an ant-free life in storage.
He survived.  I know you were worried.

There was no food down there, but I think these are the kinds of tiny ants that come up from underground after a rain.  No idea, but they have not been back since we sprayed and cleaned them all up.  

When we were pulling stuff off of the ant-infested, high shelf - there in the back corner was a pair of Mini's jeans, and underwear, and a shirt.  I was like "HUH?"  

Elmo saying "move over
guys, here I come."
"Mini, did you wet your pants from laughing with your girlfriends and then ditch them down in the basement on this high shelf?"  

These are the kinds of questions I am faced with as the mother of a girl that likes to laugh a lot with her friends.  From what I understand, there are worse things that teenage girls can be into besides laughing till they pee themselves, so I will take the occasional pee incident.  

I never tire of showcasing ole Bird.
Mini insisted that was not the case.  How do you not notice that a pair of your jeans are missing anyway?  Well, she does insist on living in the world's messiest room.  Things have been known to go missing, even AFTER she has insisted that I have, let's say -lost her basketball team uniform that she swears she put in the laundry.  Um, guess where it was?  Floor.Of.Room.  
The gang.  Can you tell it is after 2 am
here and I no longer know what
to do with myself?  I should
 probably just go to bed.  

Then I cracked the case.  Over Christmas break Mini had friends sleep over.  When Tank wanted to have friends over, he probably 'cleaned' up the basement before his buddies arrived by taking whatever clothes Mini left behind and chucking them up on the storage room shelf.  

These are the conditions I live in.  I just NEVER do know what I will find.  Anywhere.  It is slightly unnerving.  I cannot even blame the pandemic.  


Busy Bee Suz said...

Your costume making is epic!
At first, I was wondering if those were the missing jeans from a while ago....but I can't remember if they were Mini's or Curly's?
I imagine with that many kids, things get dropped, left, stashed all the time.
Ants! I no likey the ants!! How weird is that?

Ally Bean said...

Those are cute costumes and worthy of every blog post you ever write about them. As for those annoying little ants, we used to get them every spring and now we don't. I don't know why in either scenario, but I cannot overstate how icky they are to me. And to you, too, it'd seem.

Ernie said...

Suz - Thank you. I loved the Halloween costume making. Such fun. I wish those were Curly's missing jeans. I kept thinking they would turn up in the house because of our messy 'lifestyle'. But alas, I assume her stuff must've been left at the hotel since that was the last we saw them. Yes, the dropping of things - it is an epidemic here. I sort laundry sometimes and NO ONE claims some of the stuff. I'm like Really? I have seen you wear this. They just don't want to be bothered to put it away. Exhausting, and staying up till 2:30 am was not the thing to solve the exhaustion.

Ally Bean - Thank you. I am older now and I look back and wonder how I pulled it off because the kids still needed to eat and be driven places and those costumes were TIME CONSUMING. I did not do ALL of them the same year though, still - to be young. So glad to know that those ants surfacing in the spring is not a thing that just happened to us. It was like a small swarm and it made no sense.

Beth Cotell said...

And I never tire of seeing the Big Bird Costume! I will always be impressed with your costume skills!

Gigi said...

Your future grandchildren are going to ADORE the costumes you come up with for them!

Ernie said...

Beth - thanks. The costume I made for Lad when he was in kindergarten made people do a double take. Knight riding on a horse. Fake legs on the side, made it look like he was riding the dang horse. That one was worn by all 4 boys and always a fav. Maybe I should have gone into costume design and worked for some theater somewhere. My sewing skills are far from professional grade, so that would have been a stretch.

Gigi - I hope so, and I hope they like my 'stock' costumes that I save for them. I just have to keep the dang ants out of the storage room. Crazy.

Nicole MacPherson said...

Oh ants, that's the worst. We had an infestation once because the boys and their friends ate freezies in the basement - supposed to be an outside treat - and put the wrappers in the garbage, but poking OUT of the garbage, so the sugar attracted them. It was super gross and happily, the rules have been followed since then.

Those costumes are amazing!

Ernie said...

Nicole - an infestation when garbage landed INSIDE the garbage? Oh, no. I think we are lucky we don't have more issues with all the food left around and wrappers not discarded properly. this time it wasn't even food, which was so weird. I do enjoy occasionally taking the costumes out to show a kid I sit for, etc. Not thrilled with the ant attack that necessitated taking them out this time.