Thursday, January 04, 2007


Step I: Get two plates from the pantry. Plastic. Make sure one is his favorite, magenta with white polka-dots. The other one can be any ol' thing.

Step 2: Select 4 pieces of sourdough bread from the bag. Make sure the bread has smallish slices. If you buy the loaf with larger slices, he'll still want four, it will take you twice as long to prepare them, then he will leave two on his plate, un-touched. If you are stuck, and the only bread in the store is the larger version, buy it, then start praying he won't notice you taking two slices, cutting them each in half to produce 4. You have a 50/50 chance of this working. Don't let him even see you thinking of using an end slice.

Step 3: Place the four pieces in the toast oven. Let them brown through one cycle. When the toaster button clicks back up, let him say, "The toast is ready." If you do not allow for him to say, "The toast is ready," you will have hell to pay.

Step 4: Take all four slices out, gingerly, avoiding the burning of your fingers, and flip them over in reverse order. The toaster oven has hot spots, and if you don't reverse the order, some pieces will be darker than others, thus rendering the whole batch unacceptable.

Step 5: Push the toaster button down and stand nearby until it pops up. Do not leave the general vicinity! Panic will ensue. It is just not worth it.

Step 6: When the button pops for the second time, allow for him to say, "The tosat is ready."

Step 7: Take out the four slices, place them on the "bad plate."

Step 8: Using the room temperature real butter and the proper knife, butter each piece to perfection, on the bad plate.

Step 9: Cut the crusts off, entirely. Don't leave even a hint of crust remaining, or again, you will have hell to pay.

Step 10: After cutting off the crusts, move each piece to the "good plate."

Step 11: Generously sprinkle each slice with garlic salt. GENEROUSLY. Then move the garlic salt out of his reach.

Step 12: Present with a flouirsh.

Step 13: Do not leave his side. Watch while he pulls each piece apart into tiny pieces and eats noisily and messily.

Step 14: Remind him to wash hands, with soap, immediately upon leaving his seat.

Step 15. Remind him to use the nearest available sink, avoiding contact with the walls.

Step 16. Remind him that the upstairs laundry room sink is not the nearest, it is the farthest.

Step 17. Remind him that the walls from the kitchen, all the way upstairs, now have crumbs and grease, and you said, "DON'T TOUCH ANYTHING!"

Step 18. Clean-up. This process is approximately twice as long as the prep. time. While you blinked, he took the time to shake each generously salted slice, upside down, all over the kitchen counter tops, behind the sink, in the sink, on the floor, and adjacent chairs.

Step 19 - 100: Repeat 4-6 times a day, every day, for months on end.


Michelle O'Neil said...

And this is just one small moment in a very full day of moments just like it.

And this is why it is OKAY for you to vent once in a while.

And this is why anyone who wants to judge you, might be better served by taking a good long look at themselves in the mirror, instead.

jennifer said...

Excellent! This is what I am talking about...perfect. Now you are on your way.

Jerri said...

And yet, not a mark on 'em.

God Bless you, Carrie.

Suzy said...

How early do you get up to start this?
See, dogs are easier- throw the food in the air and it's done!

lisajoelle said...

The life of a mom.

Courtney said...

When you write about moments like this, you are writing your best stuff. This was fantastic -- I was hanging on every word.

Jenny Rough said...

Carrie, I love it when you write about Rojo.

Book! Book! Book!

Terry Whitaker said...

So good. So you-- to not only be able to get through it, but do it with energy and humor.

holly said...

ditto jenny. love it. love rojo. love to see a whole book full of this,

Nancy said...

I can relate so well to this story and know that a little humor and a lot of compassion gets you through. Rojo is so lucky to have you!

JessPDX said...

Such a great post. I am so with you, so picturing it. The humor is so perfect.

kario said...

Thank God for garlic salt! And Thank God for you. Take a break and have a cup of coffee, Carrie. You have more than earned it.

Prema said...

This is so stark. Stark perfection. Real art. Because it's so real time when I'm reading. Great.