Monday night I was talking on the phone to my sister, discussing our travel plans to China next month** and I ran upstairs to get my passport from it’s very snug little spot in our lock box. Lock box. I like that term, it makes me laugh. Anyway, I came down with my little prize and gave my sis the numbers she needed and we continued to plan and talk and talk and plan. You know, like we girls love to do.
Fast forward to to Wednesday afternoon, when it was time for me to get my passport in the mail to the courier. I carefully fill out my visa forms, no do-overs thank you, and tape my lovely unmakeuped picture to the top right corner. I even throw a paper clip onto the whole get up, just for safety. I complete my FedEx slip and slide it into my very last FedEx envelope (thank You, Lord) and go for my passport. Huh, where is my passport? It was here two days ago. On my desk. The desk that has full access to 8 grubby hands belonging to 4 children 4 and under. Hands that love to visit, in addition to my desk, the backyard, playroom, and gasp! the trash can. My mind is spinning with that realization. That and the fact that I am suddenly painfully aware that our trash was picked up Tuesday. Tues-day. Tuuuuesday. So it’s gone.
Mildly panicked, I gather the
unpaid laborers children to come help. “Okay kids! Mommy needs your help. I am looking for a little blue book. About this big – with hand gestures – and it has mommy’s picture in it! Have you seen it?” I question the children individually as well, to assure an honest answer. No one seems to remember it. I up the ante and offer a finder’s fee of candy. 5 pieces of candy, in fact. That gets some fire under their fannies and they disperse in different directions looking for this ‘little blue book’. Soon I realize that not only are we not making any progress, but that the kids are, in the process, trashing the house. And they have an excuse. So I run upstairs to get daddy’s passport to give them a clue, let’s make this into a treasure hunt! We search the bookcases, under couches and chairs, in drawers and under beds. I am struck with how much stuff I have that I don’t give a rat’s patootie hoot about. Stuff I could not lose, even if I tried. And I’m suddenly annoyed by how stinkin’ small a passport is. And how ridiculously plain a passport is. I mean, blue? Dark blue? Why couldn’t they make a passport neon orange and about the size of a cereal box? Surely I could find that in this house. Who cares about pickpockets and international travel if you can’t find the darn thing?? Who?? Feeling my panic crank up a notch, I call my sister and give her the bad news. She, in her usual fashion, calms me down and tells me to take a deep breath and maybe step away from the hunt for a few. Then she offers the kids $20 to whoever finds it. Dust is flying at this point, especially after I explain to Sophie that $20 could buy her a Build-A-Be@r… just like Jane has, she informs me.
Jude wakes from his nap and I show him daddy’s passport and ask him if he has seen it. He, incredibly, replies with a nod. Exhilarated, I offer him the candy bribe and off we go, with me following behind him like a kid at Christmas. Jude leads me downstairs and into the boys room. Then to the desk… he knows exactly where he’s going. Then he, with assurance, grabs Dalton’s black Game Boy and hands it to me. My hopes pop like an overinflated balloon, we are back to square one. just. like. that.
Soon, hubby arrives home and asks if we’ve looked here. And there. And under there. Yes, yes and yes. Still no passport. It’s now 6:00PM and the FedEx pick up is 6:30. No way, even if we did find it, that we could make it. I rationalize that I can overnight it if we do find it. But I’m losing hope and realization is dawning that I’ll be calling the National Passport Center in the AM to see about an expedited passport. ugh.
Then Chris asks me if I might have left it in my pockets. I don’t have pockets and if I was wearing pants on Monday night, I would have never put my passport in there. It would be squished. Geesh, men. But I can’t help but go with that thought. What if I did have it, but in my hand? Where would I have put it? Because I am the sort who doesn’t think about things too hard, I am constantly multi-tasking and most things end up laying out in the open, unprotected, until my husband comes home and puts it all in it’s appropriate place. That’s why we’re good together, I go and do and he comes behind and redoes. With order. I run upstairs and move the neatly folded pile of laundry my husband has laid on top of my dresser. And voila. There she sits. Never have I been so stinkin’ happy to find a little dark blue book. With an unflattering picture of myself in it.
My wonderful hubby takes the beloved FedEx envelope to the drop box and it is deposited at 6:29. One minute to spare. I have a whole new appreciation for the ordinary. Thank God.
**YES! I am going to China with my sister! To get her beautiful boy, Cole!! Thanks to my mother, who decided she cannot go, I will be traveling in her place as travel companion and photographer extraordinaire (or just ordinaire). And
amazingly thankfully, my babysitter, Chris’ mom and my friend Colleen have all agreed to come together to care for my kids while Chris is at work during those 2 weeks I’m in China. It’s gonna be F.U.N. around here!! Can you say “par-tay“?? Cuz’ that’s what I’m sayin’.