Wednesday, March 31, 2010
There once was a family made up of three boys, one father, and one mother. Now, this mother was not like most mothers. Oh, she loved taking care of her children, and cooking their special meals, and kept the house in order just enough as needed, but she also adored the first day of April. She would wait the entire month of March, just for that month to end, so she could finally have her beloved day.
The children who lived in this house with this mother, already knew to go to bed, hiding their alarm clocks so she couldn't sneak in on her hands and knees and set the time to wake up to 3 a.m. They already knew to hide their shoes so she wouldn't fill them to the brim with pennies. And they were sure to never use the soap dispenser on that first day of April, for there was no doubt that it would be filled with maple syrup. These things, the ones they knew of, they were prepared for. What kept them lying awake during the night, with one eye open, was the unsettling question, of what their mother had thought of during the day while they were gone to school. This, they could not anticipate, so the three boys decided to all wake up at the same time on the morning of the first day of April, and to come down the stairs together. There would surely be safety in numbers that way. And so, it was agreed upon, on the night of March 31, to meet at the top of the stairs in the morning. "Careful," the oldest cautioned, "remember last year - when she filled the cereal box with plastic ants."
The oldest boy woke up first, only to find that his entire room had been filled with balloons while he slept. He quickly jumped up, moving the balloons out of the way, and prepared himself for the day, for surely, there would be more of his mother's antics. The second oldest boy opened his eyes, only to spend the first 5 minutes in alarming confusion as to why he would be waking up in the downstairs guest room. The third son, the smallest one, the one who had taken great care to hide his toy dinosaur, lest his mother dress his toy in doll clothes as she had done the year before, alas awoke to his dinosaur being made into a princess during the night.
The boys all met their mother who was already in the kitchen, preparing breakfast. Upon seeing them, she asked "Would you like one or two snake eggs for breakfast, and how many alligator sausages?" She then poured white milk into glasses in which she had placed dots of blue coloring at the bottom, and they all watched the blue swirls work their pattern up to the top.
The mother turned and asked her children with excitement, "Were you surprised???" to which they all answered yes, and they smiled and laughed and she said, "that makes me very happy." And it did. The youngest boy laughed the hardest, with the knowing anticipation of the rubber spider that awaited his mother, at the foot of the shower.
I have always loved April Fools Day, and my children know that. I heard them earlier tonight, promising to each take turns keeping guard during the night, so I couldn't prank them this year. Too late: it's already been done. I carried my middle son downstairs while he was sleeping, and he'll wake up in the guest bedroom. I have blown up all the balloons for my oldest son's room. It pains me to tell you that Baby E's little dinosaur now has pink baby doll clothes on. Why? Because hearing them laugh and talk and remember pranks from the past years makes me so very happy. Happy April Fool's Day!!