February 2, 2022

IT WON'T OPEN, part 2, plus Curly up a tree

In my last post, I mentioned that we were at Curly's games BEFORE I took Reg to the bank to not-open an account. While we were at her games, 28 minutes from home, Reg called.


I thought he was asking us to drive him home from practice. We'd already told him that we wouldn't be home. Get a ride, or wait for Mini to be done with her practice. 

Well, he did get a ride. His buddy drove away while Reg proceeded to let himself in with the keypad on the garage door. Only, it didn't work. It hadn't let kids in the last few times they'd tried. I'd left doors unlocked a few times when I knew someone was due home and we wouldn't be home. We do have a warm body home quite often. 

Last week, when Reg came home from practice. The door wouldn't go up, so Reg knocked on the window. Coach was sitting right there, but he was upset that he couldn't hear what Reg was saying. It wasn't his finest moment. I'll leave it at that. It was the coldest night of the year. I was on the other side of the house but I quickly realized that Reg was stuck outside. Mini had trouble opening the door recently, so I deduced what was happening. I raced over and put the garage door up. To me, it was simple. Cold kid outside. Let him in. 

Anyway, I was under the impression that Coach went outside and messed with it/figured it out. 

When Reg was calling us, he wasn't looking for a ride, he was hoping someone was home to let him in. And it was crazy cold out and the keypad was not working again.

Reg:  MINI IS AT BREAKFAST WITH HER FRIENDS (she had a car with a garage door opener).

Getting Mini to answer her phone is like asking the weather to stop being cold. Armed with that knowledge, we moved on. I called my folks because they live around the corner and have a key to our house. I wasn't sure if it opened the front door or the door to the house that is inside the garage. They haven't used it in years. My dad came over with the key and it didn't work on the front door, so Reg went home with my dad. 

*note:  My dad stayed in his car, which was wise because of ice. Reg admitted that he tried the key and it fit in the lock but he couldn't get the door open, this COULD be a case of my kids don't know how to use a key. That is something we will need to fix. 

In the meantime, Mini called Reg, wonders never cease, but he told her he was fine because my folks were coming with a key. I messaged her to say if the key doesn't work you should come and get him. Well, she called me and was not close to home and had just arrived at the restaurant, yadda, yadda, yadda. I was like, FINE, GET HIM FROM NANA'S AFTER YOU EAT. Someone likes times with friends. Brave is the person who decides to interfere with that. 

Tank needed a photo from Nana's house
for a creative writing class he is taking.
 This is what I sent him. He is the shirtless
 guy. It was hot. Opposite of what is
 happening in this post. When I sent it,
Tank responded with AW, SUCH GREAT

Coach and I ended up beating Mini to my folks' house. I had some pasta (explanation to follow) to give them and a book my dad had loaned Reg while he was quarantining in the basement, so we stopped home to grab that stuff. 

*The day my dad dropped off the book, he had some papers stuck in the front cover. One of the papers was a written warning from a police officer. Apparently that morning on his way back from the his doctor appointment and on the way to our house, he had run a stop sign. He certainly didn't mean for us to see his written warning, but there it was. Lad leaked the written warning discovery to Nana when he took Finn for a walk recently. Oops, poor Dad was almost going to need to ask Finn if he had room in his dog house. I'm guessing if he hadn't left it in the book, he would've hidden his warning from Nana.*

I'm confident that Reg ate all the food my folks had in their fridge while he waited for us. 

Curly doesn't have a phone yet, but she will soon when she graduates in May. When we were beating Mini to Nana's house, (because if you're going to go to breakfast with friends - what's the point in rushing?), Curly commented that she would've really been up a creek if that would've happened to her.


The Desmonds are a little older than us. We've known them forever. Freakishly, they lived across the street from our old house too. They moved to this neighborhood and a few years, so DID WE. Proof that you can run, but you can't hide. The Desmonds recently moved into the city to be closer to their young adult kids. We do miss them. 

Back to the point:  we did INDEED leave Curly home when we went to church once. I think we drove in two cars, or someone walked to church while the other drove. It was summer. It was a case of I THOUGHT SHE WAS WITH YOU. I left church when I realized she wasn't in the pew. I was so confused. When we'd sent her outside to walk or drive to church, she'd gone outside . . . but alas -  she climbed a tree and she didn't realize that everyone had left for church until she came down a bit later. I found her at the Desmond's house. 

We reviewed which neighbors she could go to in case this situation ever happens to her. No, Mary Ann's name didn't come up. Shock? 

I've said it before, we could leave the door unlocked because if anyone was to break in here they'd take one look around and declare:  SHIT, SOMEONE'S ALREADY RANSACKED THE PLACE. When I came back from the bank with Reg, Coach was replacing the battery on the keypad. I DID mention that that might be the issue during the week, but as I've told you so recently WE SUCK, so I thought Coach inspected it and found it to be working and Coach thought because the light went on it still worked, and Reg enjoyed some fresh air in the FREEZING cold and some time with his grandparents. Hey, so long as none of our drama interfered with Mini's social time, all is well. 

A man at Curly's game overheard our dilemma and asked us why we didn't have the app to check on the door, open it remotely, etc. I laughed. Um, as Tank used to tell the caddy master when he didn't yet own a phone:  MY PARENTS ARE AMISH. Our garage door was left open ALL night twice in the last week by our children, so I turned to him and asked:  TELL ME WISE ONE, HOW DOES ONE GO ABOUT DOING THIS? Fingers crossed that I get this new fangled thing ordered and installed before we lock anyone else out. 

Believe it or not, another WE SUCK post is in the works. Check back tomorrow. Please tell me how you've messed something up, even if it doesn't involve leaving people out in the cold. 


Nicole said...

It's so cool now what can be done remotely - I have a friend who has a whole system that when they are gone, he can turn the lights on so it looks like they are home, etc. All from his phone! What an age we live in.

Your Curly story reminded me of my friend who got left at a gas station on a road trip. Her family all used the washroom then got back in the car, and her siblings (three of them) didn't say she wasn't in the car. My friend was about five, and started walking down the highway by herself, thinking she'd catch up. Eventually her parents figured it out and turned around to get her. The seventies were a different time!

Kara said...

You Home Aloned Curly! That's going to be a great essay for her college applications!

We have a dying garage door keypad. It sometimes works and sometimes doesn't. We just got a doorbell camera and security camera for the driveway. The next step is getting the smart garage door opener that you can use your phone to open and close. Because same. My kids just leave the garage open all the time. We have a dog door though, so if the kids did get completely locked out, they can shimmy through the dog door.

Pat Birnie said...

Lots of great lines here- my house also looked like it had been ransacked, plus the furniture was in such bad shape...kind of looked like squatters lived there. My 3rd child got left behind a couple of times. He was really quiet and the 2 older siblings were very loud. We came home from a a walk once, put the stroller in the garage, closed the door and went inside to deal with two demanding kids. It was somewhat embarrassing when a neighbour teen knocked on our door to tell us the baby was the garage. Talk about suck!

Ally Bean said...

The dumbest mix-up we've had is I was to pick-up Z-D at the airport late at night. I thought he told me it was the Columbus airport so I went there. He didn't show up, but called me [pre text] and asked me where I was. He was in Cincinnati at the airport, without his luggage, a good 2 1/2 hours from Columbus. So I started to drive south, but in the meantime he took a taxi [pre Uber] home only to realize that his keys [pre touchpad entry] were in the luggage that had been... wait for it... rerouted to Columbus... where I'd been. When I finally got home he was sitting on the front stoop in the dark smoking a cigar, as if it was the most normal thing ever.

Bibliomama said...

Love that you Home Aloned Curly. My husband coached a practice years ago and at the end there were two kids there whose parents had both come to practice in their own cars and left, each thinking the other took the kids. We haven't had anything like that happen, other than once forgetting Angus was in the basement and leaving with Eve, but he was fine alone, just fake hurt that we forgot to say goodbye.
And yeah, wtf, Coach? You can't hear what the kid is saying maybe let him inside where it will be more clear?

Busy Bee Suz said...

You still don't suck. Even if you tried to recreate Home Alone with your alone girl.

If you never use the keys in your front door (as we do not) I think they freeze up and need to be lubricated. If I couldn't get into my garage, then I'd have to actually pull a key out of my purse and I hate doing that!

I got a new garage door a few years ago, I think right at the beginning of the pandemic, and it has an APP. I don't use it, but it's there. Also, maybe look into a front door keyless entry; I don't think they're too costly and if everyone (looking at your Curley) has a smartphone, they can get in.

So, what do I win? I guess it correctly on your last post that it was the garage door! Winner winner chicken dinner.

Dang on your dad running a stop sign; wait until your sisters hear about that. They'll have his license in a minute.

Ernie said...

Everyone- I have a nasty stomach bug. Thanks for commenting. More later. I usually proof read tomorrow's post now, but not up for it. Hoping it is free of mistakes. Ugh. Miserable.

Anonymous said...

I don’t know if anyone in my family even has a key to our house. I’m sure there’s one (or a few) somewhere, but it’s one of the many “does anyone know what this key goes to? No, ok let’s keep it just in case.”
We do have a garage door keypad that works 98% of the time and about a year ago got a garage door opener with the fancy app. So nice to be able to check from the car or from bed to make sure the garage door has been shut.
Sorry about the stomach bug. Hope you feel better soon!!

Ernie said...

Nicole - It is amazing what can be done remotely. Too bad that isn't yet a thing for laundry and house cleaning, although I suppose there are little robot vacuums. Eventually the laundry will be done and folded while we are away, right?

Yes, the 70s were a different time. That is a crazy funny story. I have more stories of leaving kids behind, I don't even think this Curly one is the funniest. Wondering where our parent of the year award is.

Ernie said...

Kara - Curly has survived a lot as the youngest, and I don't think this incident is the worst of it. Mini wrote one of her college essays as the top ten ways she survived a big family, or something. It was very funny. Imaging your kids squeezing through a doggie door is too funny. Get that phone operated garage door opener, and then tell me how to get one.

Ernie said...

Pat - When I was making Tank's grad video - I looked at some old video footage. I was astounded at the mess in the family room. And we didn't bother to clean it up or make the kids clean it up every day. We just accepted that it would be that messy again the next day, which MIGHT be why our kids don't clean stuff up now. I once left Curly in her car seat. The older kids ALWAYS got her out. But something was exciting and they piled out of the car and left her there. She managed to worm her way out and came inside a sweaty mess. She was probably 2 or 3. I was beside myself. She was angry. Arms crossed, mad face. That could've been much worse.

Ernie said...

Ally - That is a crazy set of mixed up circumstances. Sheesh. I can't believe he was just sitting on the front stoop, cool as a cucumber. It's like something out of a movie.

Ernie said...

Ali - We've left kids other times. A few time stand out as more public and hilarious. I'll have to share those at some point. I'm laughing at a family having two dedicated parents show up to practice and then both leave without the kids. Oops.

Yeah, that was not Coach's finest moment. Sweet mother, I've TOLD you the door remote opener hadn't been working. . . which is why when he ended up getting locked out of the house, I was all eyebrows on top of my head. I do a lot, but I don't fix things outside in the dead of winter. Not in my job description.

Ernie said...

Suz - Laughing at your insistence that we still don't suck even after we left Curly home alone. That one is not the worst of our left a kid incidents. I might have to draft a post about the others. They are a hoot - in hindsight.

I still need to investigate if the door has a key that works for it. I do like the idea of a keyless entry for the front door. You learn something knew every day.

You DID guess correctly. I think I know just the prize. I will share that soon.

You are catching on to my family dynamic - you must come here often . . . I shared the ticket in the book cover story with my sisters on the way to MN and let me tell you, there was some SERIOUS clucking. WELL, I DON'T THINK HE SHOULD DRIVE ANYMORE. Head shaking, heavy sighing, the works.

Ernie said...

AM - Coach is forever climbing into bed and listening to kids come home and sighing DID YOU HEAR THE DOOR GO DOWN? DO YOU THINK THEY PUT IT DOWN? It would be amazing to be able to check from bed or from out of town, etc. This is just the thing I should've gotten him for Christmas, but you know I am not all that plugged in.

This bug was a doozie. Let me tell you. It really set me back. But this evening I am feeling better. Thank goodness. The laundry alone that no one else thought to start.

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