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June 13, 2014

[friday]: Adventures in babysitting

Adventures in babysitting

Our regular [friday] columnist, Sarah Einselen, is on vacation. That means you’re stuck with me. I’m not sure what you’ve done to deserve that, but it is what it is.

But don’t fret too much — everyone is punished at some point in life. The transgression for which we’re being punished may be so far removed that we’re not quite able to link up the punishment and the crime. And often that leaves us wondering if the punishment far outweighs the crime.

I, too, endured a punishment over the weekend, and I’m still trying to figure out what I did to deserve a weekend worth of “babysitting” a 15- and 10-year-old. I can’t think of any injustice I committed that would warrant such aggressive punishment.

As a single gal without children, I’m not used to spending extended time with children. I have watched my nieces and even had them spend the weekend at my house, so I thought an extended weekend with two boys can’t be that much different.

Wrong. I was so very wrong. Watching boys is nothing like watching my sweet, innocent, little girls. It was an educational weekend, to say the lest.

I learned this weekend that boys rough-house. They’ll throw each other across a room and think nothing of it. They pinch, and they shove, and they smack, and they tackle, and they yell, and they fight. If you even looked at one of my nieces cross-eyed, she’d probably cry. You pinch one of them and you’d need a towel to soak up the tear-filled puddle on the floor.

I learned that boys can eat. And eat. And eat. One night for dinner, I was throwing some chicken nuggets and fries in the oven. I asked the older boy how many chicken nuggets he wanted. He yells back 15 or 20. I yelled back, “No, really? How many do you want?” Turns out he wasn’t kidding. And later, as I was getting the fries out of the oven, you’d think I robbed a bank the way they looked at me. In disgust, they asked why I didn’t make the whole bag of fries. Yeah, boys can eat.

I learned that boys have bodily functions. I don’t need to say more on this one, so we’ll just leave it be.

— Misty Knisely, fill-in [friday] columnist / not renewing her sitter’s license

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