With all the recent flooding in the Midlands, I feel a little selfish for complaining about the weather up here where we all escaped relatively unscathed. That being said, I am so sick of this rain I could scream.
I’m tired of wet feet from sloshing through my back yard to get to and from my car, I’m sick of the squeaking of my windshield wipers while driving around town and I’m completely fed up with having to “man-handle” my dog outside because she thinks she’ll melt if so much as a single rain drop touches her.
If I never see another umbrella again, it will be too soon.
As much as I am not enjoying the weather, it has been harder on at least one other person in my house: my 3-year-old son Ben has the worst case of cabin fever I have ever seen.
It’s not his fault. Ben, like most kids his age, is a very active little boy. Being cooped up for the past couple of weeks has strained his patience to the limit and all of that energy — instead of being channeled safely to the great outdoors — has instead been taken out on my living room. And dining room. And kitchen.
Every parent knows that when you have young children, silence is your enemy. A silent kid is a kid who is up to something. And usually that “something” is something they know they shouldn’t be doing.
Case in point: two nights ago I was cooking dinner when I noticed the conspicuous lack of noise coming from the living room. Foolishly, I assumed Ben was just relaxing on the couch watching a movie. I should have known better.
When I went to get him for dinner, I noticed his bedroom door was shut, something we never do.
Ben was sitting on his floor, surrounded by a confetti of Play-Doh. It was everywhere. In his hair, mashed into the carpet, smeared on the windows. I didn’t even know that it was possible to make such a mess with the stuff.
Even more impressive was that he had somehow managed to bead the “Doh” up into little BB size balls. They were tiny and they were everywhere — it looked almost like bean-bag stuffing. His attention to detail in leaving no surface uncovered was extraordinary.
Ben was quite proud of himself and although I’ll probably regret it later, I didn’t have the heart to scold him.
Needless to say, cleaning it all up was a task. I’m sure when he’s a teenager we’ll still be finding remnants tucked away in the various nooks and crannies of his room.
If I though that was the end of it, I was wrong. The next night Ben got into the flour canister on the kitchen counter and floured himself and the dog.
Again, entertaining — had it been someone else’s kid and dog.
I’ve tried indoor activities to keep him busy. We built a fort out of couch cushions, read stories and finger painted but nothing really takes the place of just plain old running around outside. Kids need that.
Right now, as I am typing this, Ben is stomping around the house with his elbows all tucked in, hands in claw formation and roaring. I think he’s supposed to be a dinosaur …
It has occurred to me that I better make a game plan now, because winter is just around the corner and if the past few days have taught me anything, it’s that neither I nor my house, nor my dog will survive an entire season of Ben being stuck indoors.
Kasie Strickland is a staff writer for The Easley Progress, The Pickens Sentinel and Powdersville Post and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Views expressed in this column are those of the writer only and do not represent the newspaper’s opinion.