I spent half an hour with my son today watching the washing machine go through its cycle. All right, go on, laugh. Get it out of your system.
Are you done yet? No? Fine, take a few more minutes. I'll wait.
Alrighty then. I noticed earlier today that when he went out to play in the snow that his winter coat was FILTHY. Yeah, I know he plays in the dirt, mud, dust, you name it. But DANG, that thing was a disgrace! My mum raised me to keep my clothes clean, so by golly, that coat was going to get cleaned.
Then I noticed my own barn coats. They could do with a wash too, I thought. So I chucked them in the washer with Darling Son's coat.
For those of you who have never met my son, he's quite a whiz-banger. He's all over, into everything, and just generally in perpetual motion. Keeping up with him is a full-time job. Well, he noticed that I'd put his coat in the washer and wanted to watch it get clean. Easier said than done!
By the time the coats went through the first wash cycle, the water was nearly MUD. I'm not kidding, folks. It was gross. So I tried to cycle through to get it to drain, then start washing again. Of course, the dial on the machine was acting up. In the meantime I got to look at the soup of mud and God Knows What swirling around our coats. EWW. I guess the good news is that part of it was probably some of the diatomaceous earth from the chicken coop, but still. EWW. Even Arthur was grossed out at this point, and that's saying something. I mean heck, this kid picks up dead, half-eaten snakes to show me.
So I finally got it to drain and started the cycle again, and both of us watched in fascination. (stop laughing, you were supposed to have gotten that out of your system long ago!) He got a real kick out of watching his coat as the agitator worked. He was happy that the wash water didn't look like mud anymore. He kept asking if it could kill him, and I told him that he'd just better not find out. He even told me that he wanted HIS OWN WASHER. I'd be happy to oblige if he didn't think that folding his clothes meant wadding them up tightly and throwing them on the floor. Oh well, at least I can teach him how to run this one so he can help with laundry.
And at least he was on the OUTSIDE of the washer today instead of the INSIDE. Yes, you read that right. I found him a few days ago (it was quiet, TOO quiet) when I came back in from doing chores. I was hanging up my coat and I saw the lid of the washer move. HUH?!? Am I suddenly in a Stephen King novel? I gingerly opened the washer, and there was Arthur, Twinkie (my kitten), half of a banana, and some unrolled electrical tape. Luckily the tape was only stuck to the washer, and not kid or kitten. Or banana. Goodness. At least he found the electrical tape that Scott and I had been looking all over for after Darling Baby Son found some scissors and tried to kill the cord on the dehydrator. GACK.
There are days that I feel like a terrible mom. But ya know . . .how many moms have ever stood there for half an hour with their kid and enjoyed being together, watching the washing machine? It wasn't such a bad day after all. Sometimes you do strange things, but loving and teaching your kids is always special.