Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Who Stole My Pants?

I believe that at some point in my family's lineage, an unsuspecting and dimwitted gal with a penchant for very hairy men accidentally mated with a rather handsome baboon.  The resulting genes lay dormant for generations, finally manifesting themselves in my offspring.

This seems to be the only logical cause for my children's animal-like behavior.  What else could explain their tendencies to bang their large craniums against walls for fun and take howling leaps from sofas and easy chairs—occasionally swinging from unfortunately placed window treatments?
At any rate, it became apparent early in their lives that they needed outlets where they could express their, uh, urges.  Someone suggested enrolling them in swim class, and while the idea of squeezing my embarrassingly jiggly post-preggo body into a bathing suit went against all of my personal primal instincts, I thought it might actually be beneficial for the kids.

So now, every week I schlep the little monkeys down to the local swim center, where I spend fifteen minutes before class trying to wrangle them—and myself—into swimsuits, and at least another half an hour after class trying to wrestle everybody back out of them.  And undoubtedly, while am I frantically peeling the swimsuit off of one little monster, the other is shutting himself in a swim locker, wriggling under the bathroom door to peek at some poor mom in a stall, or twisting himself up in a shower curtain to see how tight he can wind it before the whole assembly comes crashing down.

This past week was no different.

I had just finished dressing my daughter and was trying as quickly as possible to gather my own clothes so I could be dressed in case I needed to chase my naked son down the hallway.  I plopped my son's clothes on a bench, told him to keep an eye on his sister (he's actually pretty good at this, as he relishes any opportunity to tattle on her and get her in trouble), and shut myself in a bathroom stall to dress.

As I began to strip off my suit, I heard the telltale giggles and shrieks that meant my son was up to no good.  I peeked out of the stall and saw him streaking back and forth in the locker room, completely naked.  My daughter was running after him, laughing and squealing.  The other moms were carefully trying to stay out of the way as they hurriedly dressed their own calm and compliant children, packed their bags and made their escape. 

I ducked back into the stall and frantically threw my shirt on.  I was pulling on my pants when my patience abruptly ran out.  I was tired of being laughed at...tired of being on the receiving end of pitying looks, and sick of feeling like I might just be a good candidate for the Super Nanny.

I steeled my resolve, and in my most intimidating voice hollered "Evan, if you aren't getting dressed when I come out of this bathroom you are in big trouble!  I mean it!  Get dressed—NOW!" 

The giggles abruptly stopped. There was a pause, and after a moment of silence, Evan said, "Mommy, where are my clothes?" 

Gathering up my swimsuit and towel, I called back out to him, "They're on the bench!"

"Um, no they're not."

I sighed in frustration.

When I emerged from the stall, I found my daughter three feet off the ground, giggling and jumping up and down on top of the row of sinks.  My son—still naked—was looking around for his clothing.  I was about to yell at him for letting his sister climb up onto the sinks when I saw that he was visibly upset.

"Mommy—my clothes are gone!" Evan wailed.  He was getting red in the face and beginning to cry.  I told him to calm down and assured him that his clothing had probably just gotten moved around in the shuffle.  We looked under the benches and asked the only mom still remaining if she might have accidentally scooped up my son's clothes.  She searched her bag, but came up empty.

We took everything out of our swim bag and shook out the towels.  We looked in the lockers and the showers.  We searched the bathroom stalls.  Evan's clothes were gone.  My mind flashed back to the image of the ladies frantically gathering their things to avoid getting run over by one of my insane children.  One of the moms must have accidentally scooped up my son's clothing!

I started to panic.  What was Evan going to wear?  It was cold and raining outside and I didn't have an extra change of clothes for him.  Fortunately whoever wandered off with his clothing had left Evan's socks and shoes—so Evan could walk to the car at least—but I was stumped as to what I was going to do about the rest of him.

The solution hit me like a lightning bolt, and for the first time ever I was actually grateful that I had gone out in public in my frumpy stay-at-home mom attire.  I had thrown an over-sized, dumpy sweatshirt on top of my tee shirt because it was so damp that day, and I immediately knew this was my solution.

I stripped off the sweatshirt and told Evan he could wear it; I would be fine in my tee shirt.  Evan screwed up his face—he gave me the same look of distaste that my husband sports when I suggest he wear a plaid shirt embroidered with smiling pineapples on vacation. "I don't want to wear that!" Evan wailed. 

"But honey, you don't have anything else to wear," I said, trying desperately to remain calm for my son's sake.  "Just pretend it's a big fuzzy blanket."  Evan burst into tears—he sobbed and begged me to  find his clothes.  I said that the best I could do was to leave my name and number at the front desk and hope that the unwitting thief would call as soon as she realized she had our clothing.  He wasn't happy with this answer, but he resigned himself to doing what was necessary.  

I stuffed the sweatshirt over his head and tugged it down as far as it would go.  Evan sniffled, looked down at his naked legs, and wailed "I want my pants!  Who stole may paaaants!!?"  Then he dissolved into tears again.

Given my son's fondness for public nudity, I was rather surprised to find him so visibly shaken by the turn of events. I briefly thought of using the opportunity as a teachable moment and doing the whole, "This is why we don't run around like crazy people in the locker room" speech, but I just didn't have the heart.  He felt terrible enough already. 

We hurried out to the car after leaving our information with the receptionist, and somehow I managed to buckle him into his car seat without pinching his delicate, exposed boy parts in the harness clip.  I put a video on in the van in hopes of distracting my son from the current situation, but when my cellphone rang, Evan sat up straight and snapped to attention.  "I think that's the person who stole my pants!" he shouted.  "Let's go get 'em!"

As you've probably already guessed, it was not the pants burglar calling. 

My son returned home with his proverbial tail between his legs. 

He was clearly hoping for some sympathy from his Daddy, so when my husband laughed about it and tried to convince Evan of how darn funny the whole thing was, my son just sulked and stomped off.  Fortunately Evan hasn't mentioned the incident since that night, and I'm glad for that—hopefully this won't traumatize the poor kid for life.

But as I examine this photo of him in my gigantic sweatshirt, I think I might see a bright side: if Evan ever needed to be in drag, he could probably rock a dress pretty convincingly.

He's got the legs for it, I think!
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  1. The "Pant's" thief lives in your neighborhood too? Clever, raw, and entertaining way to add humor to your day! Thanks for writing such witty post!

  2. First of all.... HAHAHAHA HAHAHAH HAHAH. Poor little guy!

    I LOVE the way you opened this post. In fact, I LOVE THIS POST.

    Fantastic. :)

    I hope the clothing turns up soon!

  3. OMG, I could just see you there in the dressing room. You always make me laugh at just the right times!! I hope you get the clothes back. Oh, and Evan really could rock a dress!

  4. HA HA HA HA! Oh my gosh. That photo is too cute, I wonder if he will ever get his pants back.
    This was a great post, I'm sure your son wouldn't agree ha.

  5. Oh wow. Just wow. I LOLed several times while reading this because I know what it is like trying to wrangle three kids after swim lessons! Even more so, it is my own Evan who would be causing the most trouble. :) Hilarious post, as always!

  6. Okay, maybe you didn't have the heart at the time but it will be good ammo for the next time he is running around the locker room.

  7. Well the one good thing about swim class is that it gives you great material!! Wonderful post Jenn, way too funny!! I hope you and your nudist colony have a wonderful Thanksgiving!!

  8. Sheesh - the dress comment threw me over the top. Love your stories - I can just envision the whole thing in my mind. I'm visiting from VB Friends to Remember - Have a wonderful Thanksgiving! Check out the video on my site for some Turkey humor. Um - not child friendly.


  9. Hilarious! You're going to have so many amazingly funny stories and photos to tell/show your kids when they're older!

  10. This is hilarious! I have the same problems and I only have 2 kids. I practically spit out my soda reading this. I am not doing my Sat laughs this week, but you should def link up next sat:)

  11. I had something like that happen also, although I didn't have something to give my daughter to wear. My husbands sister needed a ride to the store.. so off we went. Us and the 3 kids. 2 mine and 1 hers. She is known to take forever in anything she does. My daughter had to pee desperately bad. When I tried to take her to the bathroom- the women's was locked, and the men's was out of service, the lady said a little boy had peed all over the floor.
    So as we go to check out and get adisyn to the bathroom, the same lady comes up to me, and is like something in your cart is leaking. We look down and Adisyn had wet herself. So needless to say, I ended up going back to the panty aisle, and changing her in the car. =)
    Im your newest follower. Would love a follow back

  12. LOL! This is brilliant, poor little Evan, just imagine if you'd accidently left you're jumper in the pile too... complete nightmare!! I hope the pants burgalar returned the items to the pool xx

  13. Great post! Too funny. You always have me laughing! Poor Evan! Hope you all have a great Thanksgiving!

  14. Okay, let me pull myself off the floor from all the laughter. Jenn, you and I have so much in common. While I was reading this post I was wondering to myself if your kids take swim class at the same place my kids do. Your story sounds frighteningly familiar except the part about losing the pants. I did however forget my oldest daughters panties one day forcing her to have to ride home commando which she was NOT happy about. But, yes...I've been there too. Trying to wriggle in and out of a swimsuit while trying to keep my kids from streaking through the locker room or locking each other with my lock attached into the various sized lockers. They also find it fun to stand on top of the bench and go flying off it over and over again. And for some reason, they seem to never learn that wet feet on a cold tile floor is only a recipe for disaster.

    Poor little Evan! I feel your pain, dear friend. You are a great mom for continuing to put yourself in the locker room for the sake of your kids happiness. But really, who can resist taking their kids swimming? Talk about a fantastic way to burn energy.

    Happy Thanksgiving!


  15. There's a reason I don't take my children out in public... ;-)

  16. HAHAHAAHAHA, OMG, thanks for that! What a wonderful laugh to start my morning!

    Poor Evan, I do feel bad for him, but I really don't know how you managed to keep a straight face when you discovered his clothes were gone. You can bet though that next time that he'll be the first kid dressed and ready to go!

    Hehe, I'm still laughing. :)

  17. I LOVE this. Oh I feel so much better after reading this. I'm so glad that things like this don't just happen to me. :)

  18. Hey Jenn- Glad I stopped by to catch this one. Poor Evan! I would have been mortified but it sounds like you did your best given the circumstances!

    Best wishes and Happy Thanksgiving,


  19. If we can't laugh at our kids, who can we laugh at. The locker room stress / changing two kids in and out of wet suits is not fun at best and a total pain in the ass at worst.
    Make your husband go next time and maybe he won't laugh as much. Luckily, you have video evidence to hang over Evan's head for eternity.

    gobble gobble

  20. What a story! Poor Evan. BUT....maybe he will laugh about it someday ???

  21. You handled that well! Glad you had that huge sweatshirt, it came in handy. I would've panicked if I didn't bring something like that. You sure tell great stories!!

  22. Aww your son is adorable. That picture of him, he looks very worried. I suppose I would be too if I have nothing to wear except my shoes and socks.

  23. I LOVE this--I felt like I was living it with you! I think your pants burglar stole my brain!

  24. Hi I am following u back from the hop. Thank u for signing up hope to c u next week. Enjoy ur thanksgiving weekend.

  25. Hi, I am new at this but I loved reading your blog. Sounds a lot like my house (I have 9 kids)-the swimming story is funny (so are all the others) I remember taking 3 kids swimming all different schedules (30 min apart) and having to drive back home in between classes to nurse the baby (after peeling my suit off showering) then going back and re-adhering my wet bathing suit back on my body. The peeling off the wet suits got to the point where one particular child was sent to bed in the swimsuit the night before as I did not have an hour to coax them into cooperating on those Sunday Mornings. Love your blog! http://www.gardengoatquote.wordpress.com

  26. I almost feel bad for him....almost.

  27. Poor guy. I had a dream that happened to me the other day and I woke up feeling traumatised. And that was only a dream!

  28. Hi! Thank you for participating in the Monday Mingle at ToughCookieMommy.com I am now following you back via GFC and I hope to see you back every Monday.

    P.S. Have we connected on Facebook yet?

  29. I was laughing so hard at this story I was practically in tears! Thank you SO much for sharing! Although your son was so distressed by the situation, it really made my day hearing about it :)

    PS...I was also stopping by to let you know, I've given you The Sunshine Award. Stop by and check out my post for the details. Congrats!


  30. He's going to get for all of those pictures some day, you know.

    I gave you an award. Go over to my blog and get it!

    As always, I laughed at loud--think of this way; at least the boy is very bright. He obeys the letter of the law, if not the spirit.

  31. Hello,
    I am following you from the Thanksgiving blog hop.


  32. Ha.. cute story! Thank you for linking up to my Blog Hop Social! Hope to see you there again tomorrow!

  33. So being naked is only good at certain moments then huh!?

    I wanted to let you know that I have Mr. Statham up in our Battles this week!;)

  34. OMG!No you didn't!!!!


    Best opening line of a blog post E-V-E-R!!! I need a good time frame for my naked moments for shore!

    OMG! I'm still laughing...Tito...gimme a tissue


  35. I'm stopping by from the hop and am a new facebook (via personal account), twitter and rss follower. Would love it if you'd visit my Facebook page

    blog rss

    and twitter page



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