Thursday, September 6, 2012

Jack vs. the jalapeno

I'm starting to realize I'm raising the male version of Anne Shirley here.  Oh Marilla Cuthbert, I totally get you now. I used to think you were just strict and stuffy and had no imagination... all still true, but I can now sympathize with you.  Raising a child who is a magnet for scrapes and predicaments is no small task.  I'm learning this every day.  Remember the Dieffenbachia Incident of 2010?  We kinda relived that this week.  But I suppose I'm getting ahead of myself.  Let us go back to earlier this summer...

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I have a garden.  A little one, nothing much.  Hardly anything at all really.  And it kinda got off to a late start.  My husband bought me a raised bed for my birthday, which was at the end of June.  He never had time to set it up so I got impatient and did it myself (which would explain why it's not level).  By then it was July and we were about to leave on vacation.   The produce stand near us had discounted all their vegetable plants and herbs to $.50 each for one final sale.  I snatched up the best looking ones I could find (there weren't many) and the boys and I planted them the day before we left for the beach.  I figured if it all went badly, at least I'd only be out $6.50.  After I finished the garden I realized it was a long way to the hose.  Doh!  I ended up trekking out there the night before our vacation, in the dark, with a flashlight, dragging a hose.  About 5 minutes after I finished watering my garden the heavens opened and we had that massive thunderstorm that took out power in the area for several days.  Fan-diddly-astic.

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Miraculously, my garden survived.  And it survived the whole week we were gone.  In fact, I haven't watered it since and it's still green and growing.  Overgrowing maybe.

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It desperately needs staked but I haven't got to that either.  I'm just impressed it's doing so well.  Of course, since we got off to a late start I don't have much to show for it. A few green tomatoes here,

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some lovely cucumbers there,

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and a handful of small jalapenos.

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Which is what the boys first noticed earlier this week.  I've drilled it into their little minds over and over again "don't touch the garden."  And they've done really well (another surprise!).

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But Jude must've been suffering from short term memory loss because he plucked a beautiful, thriving jalapeno right from its branch.  After yet another lecture on why we don't touch Mommy's garden, I carried the no-longer-thriving pepper inside and set it on the table for later.

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This one was an "asadent."
Enter Jack.  Later in the afternoon he was quietly reading Berenstein Bear books in the guest room.  I could hear him whimpering and when I went to check on him he kept saying he had something in his eye.  I checked, nothing.  So I went back into the kitchen.  Soon the whimpering turned to wailing.  And then screaming.  He came running into the kitchen with his hands rubbing his eyes, all the while running into walls and furniture.  He kept crying saying his eyes hurt, but whenever I asked him what happened he said he didn't know.  Meanwhile he's still rubbing his eyes with his hands and his nose on my shirt...

I was starting to get a little panicked.  Do I take him to the doctor?  I don't even know what to tell them.  How do I even start to describe this?  He was reading a book and now he can't open his eyes?  There didn't appear to be anything wrong with him.  His eyes looked normal, except for being a little red from all that rubbing.  His nose was running but he was also crying uncontrollably.  Then I remembered the dieffenbachia.  (Yes, I still have it.  A little worse for wear after two moves but I couldn't bear to end it's life prematurely.)  It was still intact, no broken leaves.  And then I saw it.  The jalapeno.  Split in half and lying next to his books.

OH!

So I filled up a basin of water, grabbed a cup, ran Jack outside and just started throwing cups of water into his face.  Since then I've heard you should use whole milk instead of water, but I was in no mood for Googling at the time.

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The whole ordeal reminded me a little of Jon's Junior year at the Academy, when they hosed down the cadets with pepper spray.  (And then sent their girlfriends pictures of tough Coastguardsmen crying like babies.)  Hee hee. 

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See Jack, you're not even 4 years old and you're already prepping for the Coast Guard!

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They actuallyh make them hold their eyes open for the spraying. *shudder*
So I may have smiled a little while tossing cups of water into my son's face and reminiscing about days gone by.  Jack was already pretty upset, it wasn't like I was going to make things any worse.  In fact, it immediately got better.  By the time he started asking me to take a picture so he could "show Daddy my eyes" I knew we were going to be okay. 

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And he was. Drenched in water with red eyes, but totally fine.  And back to playing and picking on his brother within a few minutes. 

And THAT, boys, is why we don't touch Mommy's garden.

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Explaining what happens when you play with a jalapeno.
Lesson learned.  For both of us.

1 comment:

Jennifer Smith said...

My new favorite post. A funny story perfectly told!!

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