(That could stand for Speaking of Spatulas...)

We have some doors off our kitchen that used to open and close like shutters into the dining room. We lived here about three days before the incessant opening and shutting and slamming of them into the wall and onto little fingers drove me to exclaim, "Nail them to the wall! Please!" (We couldn't just take them off because the door frame is metal and they are attached in such a way that it would really wreak havoc on the doorway. And we are renters.)

It didn't take long after the nailing for Henry to figure out that stuff FITS between the door and the wall. Things can DISAPPEAR into that little space. Let's try...spoons...Matchbox cars...sticks...Mom's cutting board. Amazingly enough, it's pretty simple to get the smaller items out, but the cutting board was trapped, and trapped good. And I needed it to make dinner because I refuse to cut things on my tile and grout (blech!) countertops.

So I sat down to cajole the cutting board out of its clever hiding space and soon Cal was over to supervise. About the third time his head was between my eyes and the space I was trying to joggle the cutting board into, I felt quite exasperated. He backed up a little after surveying the situation to his satisfaction and said, "Mom, I think you need someone to help you."'

I mumbled, "Hmmm, MMMM." And he said, "We just need a bigger family." My initial harumph/thought was, "Another baby? Why? So he could grow up into a two-year-old and find other things to put irretrievably behind nailed doors? That would hardly be helpful here."

And then I realized what Cal was thinking - he wasn't envisioning a helpless infant adding to the melee of the moment. He had simply surmised that the more people in a family, the more people there are to help when you need it. He was thinking we just needed someone - a family member - who could figure things out when one or the other of us was at a loss.

And the more I've thought about it, the more I like that view of family. And I like it that in my boy's mind, the family is where we share the most and can depend on the most in terms of help, comfort, support and love.

Of course, there are always the members of a family who cram things where they shoudln't be crammed, but we can easily overlook that when most of the time their adorableness surpasses chocolate.

I do have to say I am relieved that it didn't take a newborn to get that cutting board out from behind the doors. A spatula did the trick. Go figure.


the lizness said...

oh, but you can't cuddle a spatula and dress it in cute little clothes. go on. get a new family member while the idea is out there :)

Katherine@Raising Five said...

Hmm. That kid's awfully smart, isn't he?

What a great post. I love just having someone there to keep me company (and cheer me on!), even if I'm doing all the work. I get exasperated sometimes when my kids want to accompany me to places like, say, the bathroom, but it makes perfect sense. They've hardly ever had to be alone.

rena said...

Great view of family...he's got that right! Enjoyed the post.

Unknown said...

Thanks for the chuckle this morning. I have always said that I would enjoy many grown up children. . . . But they do have to go through that helpless infant stage (and then stubborn toddler, curious preschooler, active schooler, withdrawing preteen, and independent teen stages, too). I think I'll stick with spatula helpers too.

Anonymous said...

I love that boy. He always amazes me with his thoughts

Katrina @ Callapidder Days said...

What a wise boy Cal is! I, too, love his view of family and I hope that my boys always see their family as the ones to turn to for help and love.

The Amazing Trips said...

I jumped back to look at your spatula posting and that's hysterical. There's no doubt, blogging has helped me see (or at least look for) the humor in situations that would otherwise drive me to the brink. Taping spatulas to a wall, wedging stuff behind a nailed door, just being a kid. I suppose it all depends upon how you LOOK at the situation. If using up an entire roll of blue paint tape is a huge inconvenience - not good. On the flip side, pull out your camera and you've got a great blog posting. However. I'm not looking for any extra "material" ... I've got enough as it is. Infact, I've got more "material" than I could ever blog about. Which is why there is NO way I'd leave these kids alone (unless they are firmly in their cribs sleeping!!) while I run and take a shower. Holy smokes...!!!

Your boys are adorable and I think Cal's philosophy on family is right-on.

Millie said...

So happy to know I'm not the only one with "creative" children. Cal's thought on "the more the merrier" is so sweet. It's that kind of thinking that led me to have this big a family. :) Good for him.

Gabriela said...

What a sweet view on family life from you little guy! I like it!

Gina Conroy said...

Let's just hope he feels the same way when he's ten or you may have to go AWOL like me!

sweet mama entropy said...

Too cute! I love the way kids think.

And I so remember the *joys* of being a renter with two children. Miraculously, we never once lost our security deposit! A thought on the door situation (if you ever get tired of "little" helpers and spatulas): Get a piece of wood the same width as the space between door and wall and the same length as (or just a bit shorter than) the door. Cut the wood at an angle (like a big triangle) and slide it into the space, with the taller end toward the wall. That way, when the next little something gets dropped behind the door, it should fall down, hit the wood and then tumble right out from behind the door. Unless they've been fooling me about that gravity thing all these years :)