Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Hiding Things

No, this is not some lurid post about the things hidden in my proverbial 'closet', it is a practical admittance to the things I physically hide in my married and mothering life. Just something that I had been pondering on today and wondering if I should feel more guilty for the things I hide. At the end of the pondering, I decided that I am completely not ashamed of the things I hide and then thought it might be fun to share the list I came up with. I've even provided you with a little scale of guilt level associated with each item on the list, 1 being low, and 10 being high.
Here we go.

1. Scissors:  Not only is this a practical idea for having small toddlers in the house who are enamored with the idea of getting hair cuts and doing craft projects, it is also a necessity when it comes to loving my high quality sewing scissors that I use only for quilting.
Guilt level: 0
not me, fyi

2. Cookies:   Or any sweet for that matter. Again, with two toddlers in the house, the less they actually see of the sweets that I keep hidden for special occasions and treats, the better. I hate begging and whining, so I just buy the sweets incognito and then bury them in the pantry behind some pasta...for example.
It doesn't stop at hiding them from just my kids though. With a husband in the house, it causes me to even get a bit more creative, and so I have taken to hiding them in the freezer, on the housemates shelf (because that food is off limits), or even in my own closet.
Am I selfish, no!....that is not the point. I love to share, but if they were out where he could find them all the time then they seem to disappear before I even get a taste, so I save them for later, for special moments and I control the supply that is offered so that at the end of the week there are still cookies in the house.
Guilt level: 1

3. Glue: Another no brainer with toddlers, I keep it high out of reach. Even daddy has trouble locating it sometimes because I change up my hiding spots to keep the kids guessing. Guilt level: 0

4. Diapers: This is more of a mind trick for myself. If I hide enough in and around my house/car, then when I run out at the most inopportune moment, I know/hope that I have one last one hidden somewhere within reach. I probably have at least a half dozen diapers stashed around my house....keeps me from ever being truly without. Have I ever run out of stashed diapers in a pinch....maybe once, but it was so long ago I can't remember. Guilt Level: -1

5. Favorite Pens: My husband and children are both fond of pens, and so am I. For me, what sums up a good pen is one that has a retractable tip, no cap, and writes in a thin fine line. I don't like gel, I don't like the kind I get from the bank, I don't like fancy. My most recent aquisition was the complimentary pen I used to sign a check at a local pizza place. Loved it so much I shamelessly asked the waiter if I could keep it. When she said yes, I put it in my stash. My stash has a small collection of my favorite ball point pens from a variety of local business or companies I have worked for in the past. Love me a good ball point pen, but they don't last forever, so I hoard my favorites so I always can find them. Ken likes gel pens best so....Guilt Level: 0

6. Kinsey's Artwork: The stuff that she creates in five minutes of color time during worship on Sunday morning, or the self portraits she does that look like the million other self portraits I already have. This girl is an artwork creating machine. She can sketch up a whole notebook of paper in a matter of hours. At the age of four though, the thought of keeping only her best and tossing the rest is not yet feasible.
So about once a month, when I can no longer shut the 'artwork' drawer in our credenza, I shuffle through it all, pick out the best, the ones that I will still love and know what they are in five years, and the rest I discreetly chop up into confetti, shred to use in packing boxes, or just plain throw away.
Yet I can't just throw it away, I have to hide my work. So I sometimes dig down a little ways, under a big juice bottle or a junk newspaper and hide what I am discarding there. When she wakes up from nap she is usually none the wiser, and never even misses it, unless on the off chance she spies something in the trash made from pink or purple construction paper, and then I just casually reply, "oh, weren't you done with that" and when she digs it out, I allow her to put it back in the 'artwork' drawer, to be dealt with another day.
Guilt Level: 1

7. Old or Noisy Toys: For sanity reasons, this one never bothers me, but I have to be stealthy. If they spot something they recognize as theirs previously on its way out the door, it is nearly impossible to convince them to let me get rid of it. Something that has been stashed in my closet for months, that hasn't been missed for months. As soon as it is discovered, it is suddenly their most prized possession again, and must be allowed to stay.
It isn't worth my time to negotiate and try to win in the moment. Toddler girls are a mess of raging emotions that can be stirred up at the drop of a hat. There is very little evidence yet that reasoning works with them at all. So, to save time and energy, if my plot to declutter the toy bin is discovered, I return the desired toy, they play with it like it was new for a whole......five minutes, and then I discreetly removed it again to the closet when they are done. To be discarded another day, in another way. Guilt Level: 1

8. Toothbrushes: My own of course, because I have a horrid problem with forgetting to brush my teeth. It use to be because I didn't like to brush until after I had had my morning coffee. Toothpaste messes up the wonderful flavor of coffee for me, but now I don't drink coffee. Still, I don't like to brush and then eat, because then I can still end up with stuff in my teeth. So I wait, usually too long and don't think of it until I am running out the door.
So....I have toothbrushes stashed all over, sometimes with toothpaste, sometimes not. I use to have one in my diaper bag, I also usually have one in my purse. I have one in the downstairs bathroom and one in the upstairs master bath. I think I might even have a few of those little disposable 'whisp' toothbrushes lying around for emergencies. Probably another no brainer that I will invest in soon is one in the car....just in case.
Along this same line of thought....deodorant. I got a lot of those stashed around too. I got toddlers, I forget things people....so Guilt Level: 0
In fact, I don't even feel guilty giving out such information....I'm just a real person who has trouble remember these things until after I have run out the door in the morning. Instead of learning to remember, I just plan for the when I forget. :-)

Hope you have enjoyed my little 'hidden' confession. I had fun thinking of all the silly things I hide as a mother and wife. There are probably some things I should be more diligent about hiding in my life...like my bras when company comes over, or my dirty dishes when company comes over, or my hairy legs when I forget to shave. Yet those things for some reason don't really matter as much to me.....strangely enough.


abbie said...

Haha! I love it! I need to start hiding more things - especially the deodorant and toothbrush ideas...I too forget often! I miss you dear friend!!!

lifeinthevillage said...

That is fabulous! Thanks for sharing. :)

and p.s. planted the spring garden last weekend. . . ALWAYS makes me think of you fondly! It's a new world now. We have a deer fence and a bagger on the mower. So last year we mulched with grass clippings and then in the fall we dumped all the leaves on it! Soil looks amazing. Love to you friend!