The Big Payback

It hit me a few days ago. We will be moving our oldest children into their dorm. Lately, I’d been all melancholy about this new life change. It wasn’t until the buzzer from our fridge woke me up in the middle of the night that I changed my perspective about our kids growing up and moving out.

You see the buzzer from the fridge only goes off when the door has been left open for an extended period. That means one of two things; 1. A thief with an odd MO broke into our home, opened the freezer door then left or 2. In the middle of the night, one of our boys decided they needed a snack and in the excitement of eating the last ice cream sandwich, forgot to make sure the freezer door closed properly.

It was 3 a.m., and by the looks of my now liquefied carton of Chunky Monkey ice cream, the offense most likely happened between 11 p.m. and midnight. Because this is not the first time our boys have shown that they are neglectfully wasteful, their dad and I have decided to make a comprehensive list of the things we plan to do when our boys get a place of their own. A place where they pay the water bill, electric bill, mortgage, etc.

  1. Not take our shoes off when entering your home — especially if it has been raining outside and preferably if we’ve walked through mud to get to your front door.
  2. Eat all the good snacks and leave the empty boxes in the pantry. We will do the same thing with milk.
  3. We will pour a full glass of milk, soda, or juice, drink one sip then leave it sitting somewhere out of sight. Fortunately, by the time you notice the smell, your dad and I will be on our way to your brother’s house to wreak the same havoc.
  4. Take all your forks, even the nice ones, and hide them under beds, below the bathroom sink, in the garage, etc. For good measure, we’ll also throw some in the garbage. Why forks? Because, why not? We’ve replaced three sets of silverware because eventually, all our forks disappear. Unless the person who breaks into our house to leave the fridge door open also takes the forks from our silverware sets, we know it’s you.
  5. We will take showers that take at least 75 minutes or just enough time to use all the hot water.
  6. Bring our friends with us to visit. We will eat and drink everything in your pantry, stuff granola bar wrappers and empty juice boxes under the bed. Before leaving, we’ll allow our guests to use the restroom, then remind them that yours is a “flushing optional” household. Be afraid, kids. Be very afraid.
  7. Hide your remote controls and game controllers.
  8. Use your car and return it with an empty tank of gas and something sticky on the steering wheel.
  9. Leave wet towels on the floor.
  10. Finally, we turn every light in the house on, then leave.

While there’s a few more we plan to add; this list should cover it for now. Until the time comes for us to enjoy our children’s homes much in the same way they have enjoyed ours, we will patiently wait and update our list as needed.

Comments? Email becky@wilsonlivingmagazine.com

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