Friday, July 4, 2008

Excuse Me, Do You Have Any Fireworks Without the 'Fire' Part?

Happy Birthday America!

We're celebrating The Fourth along with every other typical American family by eating BBQ and going to see some fireworks tonight. Naturally, I picked up ribs from Full Moon BBQ (it's not a holiday if I'm outside in 95 degree heat over a FIRE grilling stuff). Seriously, who decided that was a good combo?

And the second big celebration part of the holiday is the fireworks. We are afraid of fireworks at our house (among many other things). Okay, okay, I am afraid of fireworks. Truth be known, most of you are afraid of things like "fire" and "gunpowder" and of shooting flaming rockets through the air that might put your kids' eyes out, but this is the one time in the year we hand a three-year-old a 2,000 degree flaming torch (otherwise known as a sparkler) and call it "fun".

All Mother Bears worth their salt have some sort of weird irrational fear that blossomed out of a real fear. My particular nutso fear centers around the kids being burned. It's so bad that if I even look at a Fry Daddy on the shelf at Wal-Mart I get a shiver down my spine and push the buggie just a little bit faster. And if someone even mentions frying a turkey in a deep fryer outside, I need to take deep breaths not to pass out.

How bad is it, you ask? I don't cook on the front two eyes of my stove.

I'll let you pause to digest that little gem.

I do not use the front two eyes on my stove because someone might touch the burner or touch a pan or pull a pan over on his/her head or pull a pan of hot oil on his/her head or throw a ball that causes a chain reaction knocking the pan of hot oil on someone else's head...I'm starting to hyperventilate as I type. (breathe, breathe, breathe)

Incidentally, I can feed up to 45 people at my house cooking on only the two back burners (proving that I am in fact Super Mom). If the number goes above 45 people, I do have to use the front two burners, but all of the kids have to wait outside while I cook. You think I'm kidding, but I won't even open the oven until I've screamed out a warning to anyone in the general vicinity. The kids think that some thing's about to blow every time I get out the arm-length pot holder mitts on up to my elbows and scream like a general barking in combat, "Back away from the stove! I'm removing a pan of biscuits!"

We moved into a new house last year, and it had a pass through from the kitchen to the dining room with one major issue--the opening extended right over the stove, so the Shorties could reach up and touch the eyes on the stove from either the kitchen or the dining room. This presents a problem for a chick who only cooks on two eyes of the stove to avoid that very problem. We'll be having none of that, thank you very much. I had to put furniture blocking the hole until they finally took mercy on me and closed the handy-dandy pass through permanently. (Hey, I never said I wasn't a complete freak.)

So you can probably guess my feelings on the entire fireworks situation.

This year we are going to try to conquer that fear and allow the kids to have some sparklers (breathe, breathe). Really it's more like I am going to try to stay conscious and not pass out from sheer terror while the kids play with sparklers. I brought a box of sparklers in the house, and Carter asked me in all manner of seriousness what sparklers actually do. (I wasn't joking about that fear thing--the kids are so weird now that they don't even know what a sparkler looks like or does. It's bad enough being the preacher's kids without being the only kids who have never seen a sparkler too. It puts you into an entirely different category of weird.) So, not wanting my kids to be freaks too, we're firing up the sparklers.

Then I got the brilliant idea that I'd go on youtube and find a video of some kids playing with sparklers to show my kids. There my worst fears were confirmed when I found all of these idiots who'd wound together massive amounts of sparklers to create a sort of atomic blast sparkler fire thing. Carter watching the computer screen over my shoulder, his eyes wide, whispered "cool". (I feel dizzy. Maybe if I put my head between my legs for a second...)

Say a little prayer for me and the kids. If someone gets burned tonight, you'll probably see the stove and oven and maybe even the hot water heater and iron and curling iron and hair dryer (hey, those things get hot on the end) all sitting out by the road with a 'free to good home' sign on them.

No comments: