Now, on to the adventures on the homefront.
We have only had two toasters since Husband and I got married. The First was a wedding present which was oft-used and well-loved. (Husband is a gifted toast chef.) The First (toaster, not husband, try to keep up-) died some time ago. I had suspected it was on its last legs for a few months leading up there to the end. I could tell because of the burning smell that emanated from it whenever toast was being cooked, even after we had just emptied all the crumbs out of the bottom. That last day when I smelled the burning, it occurred to me that a few remaining crumbs should not make this kind of smell. I peered into the toaster, noticing that one of the little heat filament-y things was broken, bent, and touching the bread that was in there. "Look!", I said to Husband. "It's broken inside. No wonder it smells so bad." To me, this was the end of the subject. Husband, however, waited until the toaster was cooled off to do a little further investigation. What he found was (surprise, surprise) a broken filament-y thing. And a lot of crumbs. And a hand-painted wooden magnet from preschool. (!) It had not only burned up, but the magnet (which had once presumably been just stuck to the inside of the toaster), was melted to the toaster's innards. He couldn't even pry them apart. Clearly, the magnet had been in there for quite some time. Fortunately, I don't make toast all that often and the house therefore has not been burned to the ground.
Needless to say, we got a new toaster. Then, last week, The Pinkiest(6) needed an empty oatmeal can to make an Indian drum for her Thanksgiving pow-wow at school. (Please direct all political correctness complaints here.) And she needed it Right NOW. I don't know about the rest of you, but I just don't keep empty oatmeal boxes lying around, stored up for pow-wow emergencies such as this. I happened to have a nearly brand new oatmeal box filled with- you guessed it. Oatmeal. So after she politely requested that I give her a box NOW about fifty-seven times, I finally relented and dumped all the oatmeal into a bowl, directing her to "go put that in your backpack right now" (which she didn't) "so you don't forget it" (which she did. Three days in a row.). So there I was with a huge bowl of oats and no rubbermaid to put them in. I realized I could Food Save them- but that requires TWO hands so I'm going to have to wait until Husband has time to help me. My Extreme Kitchen Sports are running him a little ragged. Poor man. He works too hard. Anyway, I decided to leave the bowl of oats there on the counter until I could take care of them later. Apparently I am a slow learner. Enter Monster Truck(2) (we assume, based on catching him red-handed in subsequent attempts to repeat the following scenario): He sees that new shiny toaster up there and a bowl of wonder-mystery-stuff and he thinks- Hmmm. Holes. Interesting. We definitely need to do something about that. If only I had some sort of filler.... Ah-hah! Oatmeal! That is a perfect filler. (I guess he did not get the memo from Taco Bell.) I will take this wonder-mystery-stuff and fill those holes. Pure genius! How do I do that? It's like I was sent here at this very time, just to correct this problem.
Little Mommy(9!) came in later that day to make herself some toast. After pointing out that the toaster was filled to the brim with oatmeal, she actually tried to put a piece of bread in there with it. I am not making this up. How ironic would it have been to burn the house down NOW with the new, less dangerous toaster? We would get an honorable mention in the next annual Darwin Awards, at the very least.
This may not be the right time to state that Little Mommy(9!) is very smart. She is. I can't believe she is 9! It seems like just yesterday she was 5 pounds and fighting for her life in an incubator. It makes me realize that life is just like making toast. Time flies when you're doing it and it is only as good as what you put on it- or into it. (Make sure it's not oatmeal!) You just get it all ready and before you know it, it's gone. The message: Enjoy the adventure at every possible moment- even in the wake of a toddler or two. Be glad they're leaving a trail of breadcrumbs for you to remember later.
And see that they don't burn the house down.