Wednesday, April 1, 2009


As my sister has often noted, we have the best parents. I'm sure I'm the cause of many gray hairs and worry lines, but they were mostly understanding of my youngest child antics.

Or maybe they were just tired from my youngest child antics to really punish me. Because, in retrospect, I did a lot of stupid things.

I Friended a girl from my HS graduating class a few months ago on Facebook. We had run in the same circle of friends in middle school, but I split off into a different group when we got to high school. It was probably for the best, I was never really a part of the circle of friends (the "cool crowd") in middle school. I was mostly included because my parents were awesome and let me have parties with minimal supervision.

Anyway, she reminded me of one of my less-than-stellar moments while growing up.

I was in eighth grade. It was about this time of year - early spring - because the snow had melted and the ground was muddy, but it was still chilly out. I had a group of about five or so girls over to spend the night. For whatever reason, my parents were gone for a few hours and we were left to our own devices.

We had done all the normal 14-year-old girl things: watched movies, painted our nails, played truth or dare and talked about boys. Someone (probably me) came up with the brilliant idea of driving around our farm.

Now, where I grew up has about 10-11 acres of buildings and feedlots surrounded by another couple hundred acres of farmland. There is a "route" for lack of a better word around the feedlots so the guys can get the tractor and wagon around to feed the cattle. When I was learning to drive, I would practice by driving around the farm.

So the five of us bundled up in sweatpants, sweatshirts and stockings and piled in to my parents' white Oldsmobile Cutlass. We were talking and laughing and having a good old time. I did fairly well driving, too, and made it all the way around the east side and down to the south part of the farm - behind the feed shed and next to where the field starts.

It being dark, I couldn't really tell where I was going. Suddenly the car slowed and then stopped. I tried and tried, but I couldn't get it to go any farther. We were stuck in the mud at the edge of the field.

After screaming and freaking out for a few minutes, I finally got the other girls to go out and push while I tried to drive it out of the mud. All I really accomplished was spinning the tires and completely splattering everyone in mud from head to toe.

We finally got the car out after another good five minutes of spinning and splattering and I drove over to find a hose and attempt to clean the car off while the other girls went back to the house and tried to clean themselves off. Fortunately, there was a shower just off the laundry room right when you walk in from the garage. Most of the girls managed to get cleaned up and changed (I had to raid all the closets in the house to find enough sweatpants and sweatshirts) while I halfway hosed off the car and drove it back into the garage. I got myself showered and changed and we were back downstairs laughing over our adventure and thinking we were so sneaky for having cleaned up after ourselves. Surely my parents would have no clue what happened! Nevermind the fact the car really wasn't clean, there was mud and muck tracked all over the laundry room, there were 5 suspicious dirty towels and a whole load of muddy clothes in the laundry.

I know I got a talking to. I don't remember exactly what my punishment was, I think I remember having to rewash the car, for real this time, and cleaning up the laundry and bathroom. I'm sure there were other things, too, but they evidently didn't make an impression on me. I'm sure the other girls didn't think it was too funny at the time and I'm sure they talked complete smack about me behind my back over the incident (I mean, who really wants to be out pushing a car in 40-degree-weather, getting mud all over yourself) but at least now we can laugh at it.

I hope my parents can laugh at it too. But it makes me nervous for what's in store for me as a parent. What kind of stunts will my kids pull when they get older? The hub, he was a goody-two-shoes in high school. I was mostly good, too, but I had my fair share of moments. And I can already see the potential for little devil horns in the kiddo. Already at age three he knows how to push certain buttons and how far he can go before getting into trouble. It's the darn red hair and dimpled smile. The kid knows he just has to flash his toothy grin and bat his big old brown eyes and we can't help but laugh. At least we still have the kidlet to work on.

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