Yesterday was "Changing of the Sheets" day. I say that like I
actually schedule a day for this. Nothing could be further from the
truth. Like every other facet of my life with a family of seven
people, this chore is as random as a roulette wheel. It gets done
when several things happen at the same time: when I think about
doing it, when I have the time to do it, when no other major crisis
is happening, and when the sheets need to be washed so badly that
it's hard to tell what color they used to be. So basically, the
stars have to be aligned just right, and I never know when that will
The Changing of the Sheets usually involves yanking
off the blankets and searching for the top sheet which, for most of
my family, that means it's somewhere tucked under the foot or side
of the bed. For some reason, they cannot sleep with a sheet on top
of them. I only bother to put a sheet on the beds because I'm hoping
that they will magically feel the need to use a sheet like normal
The next step is wrestling with a stubborn fitted sheet. I cannot
seem to keep that fitted sheet wrapped around the mattress at any
other time, but just try to change the sheets and suddenly it
becomes permanently attached to the underside of the mattress.
When I got to my 5-year-old's bed, it was obvious that it had
been a while since the sheets had been washed. I found many objects
that had taken up permanent residence in his bed (luckily nothing
that was alive), and I couldn't believe that he could actually sleep
in it. I found a capless purple marker, which explained why he had
all those little purple marks all over his back one morning. We
thought he had particularly odd strain of the chickenpox, even
though he'd been immunized against them. I don't know why I never
thought that he might have been rolling around on a capless marker
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I found 81 cents in assorted change. He'd been trying to find a
way to get money for yet another Hot Wheels car. If he'd only
checked his bed, he would've been more than halfway there already.
He was certainly thrilled when I found that 81 cents, but I couldn't
help but think that I was the one wrestling with his sheets
-- why did he get to keep the money?
I found an empty crayon box. I've never understood why, if they
come in a box, they need to be taken out of the box and spread
hither and yon. Crayons are a set, right? They should be kept
together. But even if the box is no longer being used to keep the
set together, why would he keep it in his bed? He said he was "collectin'"
I found half of a paper clip. OK, now that had to be
uncomfortable to sleep on. Not to mention, where was the other half?
I also found a six-inch piece of an erector set with screws still
attached, the inside of an ink pen, a broken rubber band, three
beads from my daughter's bead set, a roll of Scotch tape, a spent
Estes rocket, three socks (none matched, of course), a piece of
half-eaten fireball candy that was stuck to the sheet under his
pillow, and a sandal that we've been looking for since May.
Lastly, I found an eight-inch iron railroad spike. He was "collectin'"
that too, he said. I think perhaps he'll sleep better tonight now
that I've changed the sheets.
[Text from file received from Laura
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