How to clean out the garage with two under three:
Pull the car out of the garage so that it's blocking the driveway.
Pull the toys out onto the driveway.
Plant the baby in the grass and hand him a couple of balls to play with.
Roll other balls up the slope of the driveway so they roll back down in an interesting way.
Roll all the chairs out onto the driveway.
Move all the stickerballs out of the baby's reach.
Move all the "end tables" out onto the driveway.
Switch the walk or ride toy to "walk" so the baby can walk around.
Flatten three boxes so we can save the cardboard to catch oil drips from my car in the garage.
Comfort the baby who let the walker get away from him on the transition between grass and agregate.
Go find the toddler who is oddly jerking on the gas meter trying to turn the water on.
Color with sidewalk chalk with both kids.
Throw away some boxes and an old water hose.
Take chalk out of the baby's mouth.
Move a few things around to clear out the space in front of the people door.
Answer the toddler when he asks what each and ever thing in the garage is.
Why is this hose leaking water, Mama?
Convince the toddler that he doesn't need to go in quite yet - here, color on these envelopes that go to nothing.
Rearrange some stuff to make the bottom shelf available for toys.
Take crayons out of the baby's mouth, color for a while, make fake ears with envelopes, take more crayons out of the baby's mouth.
Roll up all the cords from the winter "cigar cellar" to make room for the summer toy fest.
Completely miss that the baby has now crawled inside.
Move the pool, extra boxes, and little stroller to the driveway. Throw out the broken drying rack.
Look up just in time to see the baby crawling back out into the garage and falling down the 4 inch step.
Screaming, crying, cuddling, sitting in the grass with both kids and some toys.
Find a new place to store the power strip and two extension cords which isn't too clever to actually find them again yet.
Smile at the fact that the boys are finally playing together NICELY with some toys.
Unroll the freshly rolled up extension cord and pull out the leaf blower.
Look up just in time to hear "NO THOMAS" for the 85th time AND see the toddler push the sitting baby pretty hard and nearly knock his head on the agregate.
Go punish the toddler and give lecture #45 about how he shouldn't hurt his brother, he should protect his brother, be nice to him, and (again) not hurt him!!!
Decide that now is a great time for everyone to be confined for a bit. Load them up to go pick up the mower at the repair shop.
Start teaching the toddler the name of all the roads and most of the businesses along the way as a tactic to keep him from asking me a question every 15 seconds for the duration of the 6 minute drive. Realize that one day, he will embarrass himself by publicly miss pronouncing biblical Lebanon in the Tennessee way (Leb-nun).
Pick up the mower and head back to the house while continuing the narration of our entire destination. At least the toddler occassionally makes fun of his asking "what's that? what's that? what's that?" Sometimes he will ask it 8 times in a row pointing at everything with a smirky smile on his face.
Arrive back at home with Thomas asleep in his seat. By the time I get over to the toddler's seat, he's gently saying to his brother, "wake up, Thomas" while TRYING TO PRY HIS EYES OPEN!!!
"George! WHAT HAVE I TOLD YOU ABOUT HURTING YOUR BROTHER!!!???"
Very serious eye contact from him, chin tucked, small voice says, "I don't want a spankin'. I won't ever do it again."
I slam his car door, and scream at the trees!
I let him out to run in the yard, roll down the drivers side window and leave the baby in the car. WHERE HE'S SAFE!!
Take the leaf blower and sweep out the garage.
Put some of the toys and good stuff back in the garage in a more organized fashion.
Give up when George starts requesting snacks (it's 12:15), clear the path for the garage door, go in to make lunch, close the garage, move the baby who wakes nearly immediately. Of course.
But after lunch, they actually go to sleep, AT THE SAME TIME. I get the lawn mowed with my super light touch self-propelled mower. Between the two sides of the yard, I READ A NOVEL IN A ROCKING LAWN CHAIR.
And that was really nice...
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