Stuck Up


Owen got a roll of duct tape in his stocking for Christmas. At first he ignored it.  I suspect Owen does not like to be considered predictable.

But Santa knew what he would do with it, and sure enough, a few weeks later he got interested and spent a couple of days joyously wrenching tape off the roll.  And wrenching.  Duct tape makes a terrible and satisfying sound as you pull it off.  Duct tape also has a terrible smell.  It smells like something is wrong, rather than something is about to be fixed.  Someday, if I get chance to speak to a duct tape designer or chemist, I will ask why this is.

When Owen wanted to take the stinky mass of stuck up tape into the bathtub with him though, I objected.  Who knows what chemicals he would be absorbing through his skin, as the hot water soak and steam softened those adhesives? So I stuck the sticky things (there were at least three by then) around the corner in the hall at bathtime.  But he found them of course, making a naked search and rescue while mom was down the hall writing or more likely doing laundry at the other end of the hall on a Saturday morning.  By then the tape blobs had picked up all kinds of dirt and dog hair, were in even less savory condition and just as smelly. Into the bathtub they went, which gave Owen great pleasure. And into the trash they went thereafter, which gave his mother great pleasure.

But not before they lay around the floor a while, clogged the toy drawer, and were carried off by Trum the Boston Bulldog into the backyard mud a few times and left there to improve with rain.

far too clean to be normal

In general I don’t like plastics, and the laziness and waste they permit to our “throw-away society.”  But there are exceptions to how I feel about this, and one of them has to do with watching the simple pleasure Owen gets from unwinding an entire roll of duct tape, and then being allowed to throw that blob out afterwards.


“Side Effects to Surviving” by Bee Lavender

  “The first and fundamental principle is simple: always tell the truth. No matter how difficult, unwieldy, or frightening, it is better by far to acknowledge what is actually happening. Yes, this is hard – especially if you are talking about painful and messy procedures, serious permanent disabilities, or the possibility of death. But even the youngest children have the capacity to understand what is happening, and developing a framework will help them cope with the process. Saying “this will hurt” is always better than pretending otherwise. Saying “we don’t know what will happen” is always better than promising a miracle that might not come.”

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Breaching Whales


Owen stayed home from his daycare program last week – things weren’t working well with his digestive tract, it just seemed wise.

We had a peaceful time all day, doing nothing mostly except sip chicken broth.  A cold, very blustery winter day, and both of us feeling a little under the weather.  It was good to hang out on the rug by the block box and then read aloud at the sunny Continue reading