The simple joys of summer.

There is a certain water spigot at my mom’s house that has gotten quite a lot of us kids into trouble over the years. It’s the outside faucet, one that we kiddos quickly learned how to turn off and on. We’d use it to make mud pies, to make moats in the sand box, to fill the pails when we were playing soup chef, to give the dog more water, and, on more than one occasion, to splash each other.

All of this abuse is certainly why, after shouting through the window to Stop turning the water on!, my mom eventually took water privileges away from us.

One day we went out and the handle to the water faucet was gone. I’m sure there was a lecture that probably went along with the mysterious disappearance, but I’ve blocked it if there was. But, because my mom loves us and because she was a softie (and quite possibly because we were rather lovingly relentless), we discovered before long that the handle to the water faucet was kept in my dad’s top dresser drawer. Now, my dad was kind a scary person when we were little. He was a strict disciplinarian and not very big on parental bonding. You can imagine how daunting it was to go fetch the faucet handle out of his drawer even with our mom’s permission, never mind when we were sneaking it out. Of course, the very idea of sneaking is kind of laughable now. Sure we were quiet and sneaky enough to get the handle out undetected. We could even put it back exactly as it was. But the thing about the outside water faucet is that the sound of the water coursing through the pipes was loud. It could be heard throughout the entire house. Not so sneaky. But definitely fun!

When I was trying to think of ways to keep the girls entertained while we spent time visiting my parents, the idea of water guns came to mind. I thought it would be a fun way for them to interact with their (immobile) grandfather. He could sit on the deck, armed with a water gun, and they could run around down in the yard and try to evade his fire and get him back. Add in Uncle Joey as a not-so-secret weapon for either side and you have a lot of fun. Grandpa didn’t play, but the girls and Uncle Joey sure did. Auntie Kim and I bought Joey a huge super-soaker and the girls these tiny little guns. The disparity cracked us up. The girls didn’t think it was so funny at first, but I did hear a suspicious amount of laughter and shrieking as they ran back and forth to the water faucet to reload.

The three amigos had been at it for more than an hour before I remembered that I didn’t think to bring extra clothes for my soaked urchins to change into. Whoops. Oh well – I was planning on buying them new Red Sox t-shirts anyway. I maybe had to negotiate a cease-fire as I made my way to the car to go get dry clothes, and when I came back, the girls were running around nearly nekkid, but that’s what summer’s for, I guess. Water gun fights, playing with crazy uncles, and filling the house with the sounds of shrieking laughter and that damned loud water faucet running full tilt.

Simple fun, but the kind that makes you sleep like the dead at night. How can you beat that?

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2 Responses to “The simple joys of summer.”

  1. Kathy Says:

    What an awesome memory they will have. The last time Uncle Johnny came to visit my kids they had a HUGE water balloon fight. It was amazing.

  2. Kim Says:

    That giant water gun required BATTERIES! And had ATTACHMENTS!

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