Last night, while I held my breath and deliberately looked the other way, the boy rode his four-wheeler up the ramps and into the back of Hubs’ truck. With a quick whip through McDonald’s drive-thru (Don’t judge us! It’s been the Week of Very Busy, otherwise known as the Seven-Day Streak That Kicked Mama in the Face With All the Exhaustion; we’ll detox NEXT week!), we joined some friends so that the kids could do a little off-roading in the hills.
I think the boy has found his new passion in life, which involves riding up steep hills and scaring more gray hairs into his mama’s head, while she shouts out, “Drive smart! Watch the fence!” over the roar of his engine.
For the record, the boy can hear ABSOLUTELY ZERO of the safety advice that I holler at him over the noise his four-wheeler makes, but it’s what a mother does.
I simply sat on the trailer with my camera and snapped pictures of the kiddos, while I shared cold French fries with two-year-old Leah.
And then we laughed hysterically when Ciara put her helmet on Leah, because listen, y’all! The poor baby could not stand up on her own with the helmet on, because she was so top-heavy. She kept tipping over, which made us howl with laughter until my sides split open. I don’t even know why I’m telling you this, because it’s yet another indication that a visit from the Department of Family Services might not be a bad idea.
After the kids’ thumbs were PLUM TUCKERED OUT from pushing the gas triggers (Is that even a legitimate term?!) down for so long while they rode, they parked their vehicles and went for a hike in the trails.
And there’s something that is lost somewhere between the age of eleven and adulthood — the desire to HIKE the trails, when you have a perfectly good, full-of-gas, motorized vehicle sitting right beside you.
“WATCH FOR SNAKES!”
“ARE Y’ALL WATCHING FOR SNAKES?”
“STAY ON THE TRAILS! THERE MAY BE SNAKES IN THE BRUSH!”
“RUN FAST IF YOU SEE A SNAKE!”
Hubs said that I was VERY helpful, and he told me that I should just concentrate on giggling at Leah while she was attempting to walk with the four hundred pound helmet on her head.
About fifteen minutes after the hike began, the kids came back SCREAMING!
I jumped, ready to administer CPR for a rattlesnake bite, but low! They had caught themselves toads, people!
Five toads, to be exact.
The boy screeched, “I’ve got new pets! And they’ll all be friends together!”
And this is where Mama’s concrete boot fell to the ground, as I said, “One! Choose your favorite, because you can only bring one home, now that Gru the frog has passed on to the big swamp in the sky. Ain’t no way Mama’s gonna run a toad daycare at home.”
And THAT, people, is how we came to be a toad-owning family. While the boy was backing his four-wheeler down the ramps and out of the truck last night at our house, I ran inside so that I wouldn’t have to watch him fall off the ramps and snap his head off his neck, and I quickly used the Google to learn all about toad habitats.
I told Hubs later, “I have no idea if we have set this little fellow up with optimal living conditions or not. What if he needs something that I’ve failed to provide him with?”
Hubs simply said, “Then we know where we can catch another free one.”
Obviously, Hubs is of the notion that toads are a dime a dozen.
Dear Department of Family Services,
I’ll get the coffee brewing, so that I can offer you a hot beverage while you come to investigate our lifestyle.