It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that, with a Mum like Mrs L. our kids are becoming very creative. Our daughter for instance, is currently going through a phase where she is making cards for every conceivable event (or non event), and although it is very sweet, it can be a little overwhelming. I have been presented with cards for being the best Dad ever, for picking her up from school, taking her swimming, reading her a book, helping her get dressed, giving her a bath, wiping her bottom etc, etc, etc. As I said, this is lovely and it makes me feel really appreciated as a parent, but I am, a hoarder, and find it very difficult to throw things away, especially those of significant sentimental value. Unfortunately, it doesn’t require much for me to establish a bond with a particular object. When I was a much younger lad I could not be consoled when my parents got rid of an old gas cooker, to replace it with once which actually worked. To this day my own Dad doesn’t need much persuasion to bring the story up. Ha bloody ha!
But I digress. To make a really good card, according to my kids, the most important thing to use (and this includes the card itself), are stickers and lots of them. Like children everywhere, mine do not subscribe to the “less is more” mantra. No it is definitely a case of MORE IS MORE!!!!! I would be more than happy if the stickers were only used for the cards though, but sadly they aren’t. They get everywhere, and they are almost impossible to get off, and in many cases their purpose is truly mind boggling! Really, who thought it was a good idea to do a rather poor drawing of a sandwich, put some googly eyes on it, and make it into a sticker for kids? Well, apparently someone at the “Indestructosticker Corporation” did, as one has currently been residing on one of our bedroom doors for the last three years. Every now and again when I have plenty of time on my hands, the television is even more terrible than usual and there is no charge on the iPad, I will scrape at it but I am convinced that is it made of some sort of Teflon/Kevlar hybrid, as it cannot be persuaded to move. This, as far as I’m concerned, is proof that the government is hiding new technologies from us, and I sincerely doubt that they’ve stopped at adhesive cartoon characters!
To try to motivate Fraboo have sticker charts which we use to record certain behaviours. This strategy doesn’t seem to be having quite the desired effect, as she will either liberate stickers which we have put on it, or give them friends so that they don’t feel so lonely.
Inanimate objects are not the only things which are subjected to a sticker frenzy. A guest to our humble abode should consider themselves most unwelcome if they leave the house without at least one sticker, and Mrs L. and I (and the dog) receive a plethora daily. They also appear to be waterproof as after a shower, I still find them stubbornly clinging to my elbows. I’ve found them inside socks, on my pillow and on one especially memorable occasion, on the inside of my boxer shorts. I was very grateful for their super sticky qualities, on that day. I live in daily peril that I’ll spend most of a morning at work before someone points out to me that I’ve either got a particularly nasty pimple, or a sticker on my forehead.
The very best stickers to receive though, are the ones which have been sneaked onto you, or one of your possessions without your knowledge. A couple of weeks ago, I’d left my very manly wallet in a safe place, so safe in fact, that I didn’t know where it was. It was time for me to go to work, and so I asked everyone to help me find it. After a few minutes Fraboo had located it and put it into my very manly man-bag. I said goodbye to everyone and then rushed to work. Later that morning, I was feeling a bit peckish and went to buy a muffin. Imagine my horror when I pulled my very manly wallet out of my very manly man-bag, only to discover my darling daughter, had put an enormous neon sparkly sticker with the words GIRL POWER prominently displayed, on it. That is the most macho I have felt for a very long time I can tell you.
We should probably stop buying stickers for the kids, but my psychologist has explained to me that I am at a pivotal moment in my treatment, and I should try to change as little in my life as possible. Who’d have thought that losing a gas cooker at the tender age of 15 would have such long lasting consequences?