This is a post about stashing, staches, caches, and hidey-holes.
I am qualified to write this because apparently I inherited my mom's ability to fit 9000 containers of food in my refrigerator, know where it all is, not have anything fall out when I open the door, and be able to get to it all without taking out 4500 things first.
I could write about that. I could. I could even take pictures. I'm told it's impressive.
But today, it's all about the kids.
Somewhere during gestation of both children, they took my genetic ability to hoard without looking like a hoarder... and mutated it. My children are STASHERS. They're not hoarders, though M1 sometimes tries to be. They're stashers. Stashers, stashers, stashers.
That's a hard word to repeat over and over, even while typing.
M1 started young. I put a hamper in his room when he was tiny and explained to him that all clothes, when he takes them off, go into this hamper. We worked on it. He had it down pat. Sometime about the age of 4, though, he got an idea.
For the record, ideas in the mind of a 4-year-old are dangerous.
He would put a pair of underwear in the hamper. Then he'd stash the T-shirt behind his dresser, the shorts in a toy bin, and socks under his bed. The next night the T-shirt would go in the hamper, and he'd stash the rest of his outfit in other random spots. After doing 2-3 loads of knits, it would occur to me that he wasn't meeting his quota of clothes and I'd go hunting. And Every. Single. Stinkin'. Time. I would find dirty clothes in half a dozen spots around his room. I'd find one hidey-hole; he'd invent another. Sometimes he'd even put the dirty clothes into the drawers for his clean clothes! Inventive, that one. Every part of me wants to say, "And if you'd apply yourself like this to learning X, we'd be a lot farther along!"
But I don't. He'll learn someday, right??
Anyway. As irritated as I got over finding dirty clothes (and now clean ones that he doesn't feel like putting away), he ain't got nuttin' on M2. She makes his stashing seem benign. Normal. Almost to be expected.
What blows my mind about her stashing is that she loves her room to *look* clean. She vacuums it, has everything put away nicely, and enjoys having it all 'just so.'
Looks can be deceiving.
She also doesn't pick things you'd expect to be hidden in her room.
Her stashing, unlike M1's, isn't harmless. She's slightly more... well... DESTRUCTIVE with her stashing.
Yesterday we had a very quiet day. It was glorious. We had nowhere to go and nothing to do and everyone was doing what he or she wanted. Oz was playing games and/or doing some work on his computer. I was finishing a library book. M1 was reading Garfield cartoon books over and over. And M2 was playing happily in her room.
All was right in the world.
Or so we thought.
She came out and we had some snuggle time, and then she went back to her room. Oz followed her to tell her it was about time to put her toys away, and he came back holding her nightlight and her lamp. I was puzzled, because I hadn't heard any screaming.
Apparently, she had unplugged her nightlight (we still don't know why) and her lamp. And she had taken the white cord of her lamp AND COLORED IT BLUE.
That's right! She had taken markers into her room. Several of them. And scissors. She had stashed them at the bottom of her stuffed animal basket (a large hamper) in her closet. Oz and I removed what we could find, and then I found two more today. She brought out yet another this evening while cleaning her room. She'd already been in trouble twice this week for art-related issues, specifically taking window markers and coloring on the tablecloth and using glue on the wooden coffee table (again), so I suppose the third time is indeed the charm. And I'm sure that it's partly my fault for not keeping a good eye on her while she's creating her masterpieces. We didn't confiscate any of her art supplies, just made her put them back where they belonged and told her to make sure they *stay* there.
But for heaven's sake.
I fear the stash. And I'm starting to wonder if this art box that Oz and I have... well... stashed... for her for Christmas is a good idea after all. I need to check and see if there are slots for everything. That'll probably be the deciding factor.
But if you hear me shrieking about curtains that have been colored purple, you'll know. The Stash has struck again.