Monday, January 22, 2007

Lukewarm Reception

My husband likes to complain that I spend too much time in front of my computer. I tease him about the fact he's just jealous that my fingers spend more time stroking my keyboard than him, and he pretty much agrees. Yesterday, I was a little nervous about attending the family birthday party. I confess to having a hard time watching my neice and nephew grow older and blow out the candles on a cake that is now bearing one less name in frosting.

To combat my nerves, I did what any blogger would do. I blogged. I surfed the net, checking out new blogs that I generally do not have time for. Time slipped away from me, until I realized that if I was to attend this family function I had better get my arse out of my chair and start riding herd over my children. Who were happily absorbed in some video game and squabbling with one another.

As I hustled them into the shower, I reminded each of them that water was a precious resource and not to squander it. Don't forget to wash behind your ears and make sure you rinse all the soap and conditioner out of your hair. I nagged at them to make sure they washed all the parts of their bodies which included their privates and their toes. Standing in the streaming water does not constitute washing. Remember to use soap.

Satisfied I had nagged appropriately, I started tidying up and getting ready myself. I could hear the arguing over who got to shower first, the annoyed protests of hurry up! and the sounds of my children getting clean. After a few minutes (but who really knows because my idea of tidying up and getting ready at this point meant sitting back down in my chair and reading more blogs) one child slowly emerged from the bathroom and then eventually the other.

All scrubbed and shiny. Good as new. Looking at the clock, I noted how time was really moving and I better bust a move. After quickly reminding (translation: more nagging) the kids to dress appropriately, I hopped into the shower myself.

I should have realized something was amiss when I could barely see where the shower was. The steam was cloying and claustrophobic. But by now I was thinking of nothing but Bug and hoping I could pull through the party without turning into a mushy, weepy aunty.

I turned on the water and quickly hopped in. I didn't have time to adjust the water temp, I had to get my ass in gear. The spray of water hit my skin and I quickly grew goosebumps as big as my dog. I adjusted the water and waited for warmth. Except the water seemed to be growing cooler. I turned around once more, and turned the hot water on full blast. By this point my poor body is shivering uncontrollably.

Nothing. Just lukewarm water quickly chilling into an icy blast of winter. I waited for a second until I realized something.

The little buggers used all of the hot water. And now I was stuck with a cold shower.

By the time I was done having the world's quickest shower, my lips were blue, my teeth chattered so hard they about rattled out of my head and my knees were knocking together from the cold.

As I toddled off to my room to get dressed and regain feeling in my toes, my darling children commented on how quickly I managed to shower. Fric took it upon herself to ask if I had managed to remember to wash all of my body parts, including behind my ears.

Frac commented on how he loved a good shower as he stuck his finger in his (hot) water soaked ear.

Cheeky children.

As I chattered and shivered and tried to dress, I lectured them from my bathroom. About the importance of hot water and how it is imperative to make sure to save enough for the next person in line to use the shower. How consideration and kindness is a reward of it's own.

How if it ever happened again I would toss them naked into a snowbank and let them see how much they liked having a frosty shower.

My cheeky children just laughed and reminded me that in using all the hot water they had done me a great service.

"How do you figure?" I asked them, still trying to regain sensation in my skin.

"Think of how much water you saved, Mom. You had the quickest shower ever!"

It was hard to argue with that logic. But the next time those two hop into the shower, I fully plan on sneaking into that bathroom and dumping a big bucket of ice water over their heads.

I figure it will be the easiest way to teach them to conserve hot water. And the most fun.

For me, anyways.


Blogger Mrs. Chicken said...

I hope your party was bearable. As always, I am stunned by your ability to find humor in your pain.

9:52 a.m.  
Blogger Ben & Bennie said...

I used to pull the water dumping thing on friends and family. Just after we got married I did it to my current wife. I was informed that if I ever did that again I would be looking for a new wife. That was almost 14 years ago.

Wait, my ten-year-old is now taking showers...thanks, t.!!!

10:54 a.m.  
Blogger Motherkitty said...

Ah, kids. Don'tcha love 'em? Both my kids are long gone from the house, grown up, married, having showers of their own, dealing with their own lives. So now it's just husband and I, both enjoying long, hot showers until the hot water runs out and not having to worry about the next person in line for a shower and whether they will deal with freezing cold water.

Oh, how I wish I had that worry again and my darling kids were back home living with us. I would gladly give up showering entirely for that.

11:31 a.m.  
Blogger Mrs. Chicky said...

When I was a teenager I took such long showers that my father resorted to turning off the hot water in the basement. Without warning. Even though I am now an adult, paying for my own hot water, he still likes to bring it up at family functions. Har har.

Let this be a lesson to you. Next time, turn off the water.

(Hope that birthday party wasn't too terrible and you ate lots of cake.)

11:41 a.m.  
Anonymous mamatuliup said...

There is nothing worse than a cold shower. It takes FOREVER to warm up after a cold shower.

(Hope the party wasn't too difficult...)

11:57 a.m.  
Anonymous Liza said...

GIT 'em! You freeze those little monsters but GOOD.

12:31 p.m.  
Blogger jellyhead said...

Ah, I see your kids have inherited your sense of humour!

Hope the party went OK (at least now it is over). Although I didn't comment on your previous post, I have been thinking of you ever since. And I especially thought of you as I wrote my most recent post.


2:08 p.m.  
Blogger kimmyk said...

You might've showered, but I can still smell ya down here.

What kinna cake didja eat? I want some damn cake and ice cream. I might have to lie soon and fake a birthday to get me some. Oh wait. I'll be 40 on my next one-I'll wait thank you very much. Oh yeah, I know what you're thinkin' you hateful zip it.

5:33 p.m.  
Blogger B.E.C.K. said...

Cheeky children indeed. Wherever do they get that from? ;^) My dad used to do the same thing mrs. chicky's dad did. Boy, was he happy the day he figured out that trick. Me...not so much. Methinks you should shower first next time. ;^)

Hope the party was okay and that you got an extra hug in there somewhere...

6:06 p.m.  
Blogger The Wilson's said...

This is the first time to your blog and you are funny!! I hate it when the shower turns cold...that is why I am the first to take a shower :).I have added you to my blog roll, if you don't mind. Come visit me sometime.

10:12 p.m.  
Blogger Junebugg said...

Hope the party wasn't too bad. Sounds like Fric & Frak take after their mother........

11:49 p.m.  
Blogger Above Average Joe said...

The Champ has started taking showers and I have to keep him focused on the task at hand instead of writing his name on the fogged up walls.

10:20 a.m.  
Anonymous roxylynn said...

You can try to look at the cold shower as a positive experience. You weren't late getting to the party 'cuz you took too long getting ready, and your children were squeaky clean. They won't be the stinky kids in class anymore. ;^)

10:40 a.m.  
Blogger Em said...

Oh man, I've given that lecture about hot water and using energy and blah blah kids look at me like I'm from another planet. So we bought a larger hot water heater.

9:07 p.m.  
Blogger Abandoned in Pasadena said...

Ah...I remember the days of cold showers, but now it's just Jimmy & I and plenty of hot water.

Hope all went well for you at the party.

5:04 p.m.  

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