Friday, November 9, 2012

The Mini-Destroyers: Where are they now?

My post on the Mini-Destroyers has been one of the most remembered posts I've written.  I ran into several people at Sewing Summit who said that was there favorite post.  I thought I'd do a little recap on where the Mini-Destroyers are now, more than a year later.


First off I must say I adore my kiddos, but they can be stinkers (just like anyone's children).  My problem is that I have three about the same age.  Miss C is only 20 months older than the twins.  Believe me twins can get into way more trouble than just one.  I fully admit that I feel a bit sorry for people when they say they are having twins.  It is HARD.  I do believe my kids are crazier and busier than your average kid.  They have run us ragged and destroyed many things in our house, but we keep them around because we think they are pretty cute.

Kitchen Table: Destroyed
The county dumpsters showed up on our street a month ago for fall clean-up.  I took the kitchen table apart and threw it, along with our five semi-functional chairs, into the dumpster before it was removed the next day. The kids have totaled the table and chairs.  A couple years ago I thought it would be a great idea to redo our kitchen table after reading multiple tutorials.  BAD IDEA.  The kids started trashing my paint job the moment we moved the table back into the house.  After two years it looked awful.  I mean really, really awful.  Plus, the chairs were barely hanging on.  They had been tipped over so many times that we had to keep gluing the spindles back into the chairs.  It was time.

The hubs agreed to buy a new table and promised I would never, ever, ever paint a kitchen table ever again.  Now the kids actually do great.  We've had it for a month.  No chairs have been tipped over, and they are great about using vinyl placemats to eat as well as write on when coloring and doing homework.

Cribs: Destroyed
These also hit the county dumpsters last month.  They were in rough shape.  We'd reinforced the sides with additional screws to make them last longer, but Little Dude and Miss A were climbing all over them, and we were afraid they would fall and hurt themselves one of these days.  Their room is so small that it would barely fit two twin beds.  We just purchased Ikea toddler beds for them as a transition until we can brave bunks.  Me and all three kids in tow to the Ikea the other day--it was an adventure.  My 1-hour of childcare ran out because of my indecision.  It was not fun trying to purchase all that stuff with three kiddos "helping out".

Their cribs have actually been secured to the wall for the past year or so because of this:

During "nap time" a while back, they decided to rearrange the bedroom furniture.  They pushed both cribs out of place and pushed one into the closet (the doors had long been removed).  They then scaled the crib and pulled all the clothing out of the closet that they could access.  They also got a container a Vics and a tube of diaper cream off a 7 ft shelf in the closet which they proceeded to spread all over themselves, the carpet, the walls, the cribs, all their clothes and all the diapers they removed from the closet.  All through this they were silent.  I was listening to them on the baby monitor and had no idea anything mischievous was going on.  I secured their cribs to the wall with furniture straps the very next day.  

My favorite large wall clock: Destroyed
I'm still not sure how they did this one, but after a good wack with broom handle from Miss C, my favorite clock was never the same.

Couch: Near Destroyed
Our couch is aging, but the kiddos have helped it along quite a bit.  We've had some thin spots in the leather for a while, but Miss C decided to help a tiny hole become a much bigger hole.  Someone else decided to see what it would be like to poke "safety" scissors into another spot.  Just recently we found that someone had drawn nice spirals in pen on the ends of the couch and loveseat.  Those didn't come off.  It was just added decor to match the pen marks all over the recliner (which fortunately did come out of the microfiber).

Making Progress
I'm happy to report that I think we are moving past the Mini-Destroyers stage of life (somewhat).  They are still busy and crazy, but it's not the insane amount of destruction that we had a year ago.  It used to feel like every time I turned around something else had been destroyed.  

I've removed the child locks on the kitchen drawers and cabinets (with the exception of the cabinet with cleaners).  The piano is no longer tied shut, and we haven't had any fingers slammed in the lid.  The chairs are no longer tied to the table.  We no longer have locks on our microwave, dishwasher or fridge.  Although, I really want to put a lock back on the fridge.  We're in that stage where they open the door and just stand there as if something amazing is going to pop out to eat.  (I understand this stage lasts pretty much forever).

I put our end tables back into the living room.  I even bought a lamp about 6 months ago that is still standing and working.  Our house used to look at though we just barely moved in.  Our living room pretty much consisted of a couch, love seat and piano.  I'm slowly replacing decorations and furniture that we removed due to the mini-destroyers.  I sort of feel as though we are moving back into "normal" life.  

I even decided to put up some seasonal decorations this month.  Our idea of decorating the house has been to pull out the Little People Nativity set for Christmas.  I feel a bit stupid brave for giving this a try again.  We'll see how the month goes. We've set some pretty strict rules about not touching the breakable stuff.  It's been up for several days, and so far so good. They are following the rules. Baby steps.  I want them to learn how to take care of things so they don't always have to be replaced.  We've been talking about taking care of our stuff a lot recently.


I get asked all the time how I get so much done with three kids.  I really don't know.  Most of the time it doesn't feel like I get anything done.  I have three little hurricanes who come right behind me and undo anything I do whether it be cleaning, putting toys away or folding laundry.  I'm still surprised when I look back at my blog and realized what I've created.  It's validating to me to finish a quilt or work on a project since nothing else in my life stays done for more than three minutes.  It helps me maintain my sanity amid all the craziness.  I rarely accomplish anything while the kiddos are awake because if I leave them alone for just a few minutes I return to Lord of the Flies.  Even doing laundry downstairs can be a challenge.  I don't sleep enough is pretty much the answer.  I'm also really enjoying my short mornings a few times a week when they are all in school.  It's nice to have "me" time again.  I'm so grateful for my little mini-destroyers, but I'm also very grateful for my short breaks.

Have a great weekend!!  My hexagon piecing tutorials are coming next week!

22 comments:

  1. As a mother of fraternal twins, I feel your pain and your love! My girls are now 13 and it does gets easier! Each year is a milestone! I'm not sure how I survived the younger years! I do have to say that my girls have become great friends! Love reading your stories thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hang in there darling! Mine is 26 months, and we've only just started entering the destroyer phase I think. Crayon drawings have started to show up on the walls and the other week he pulled my fall hurricane decoration (pretty much exactly like yours) down. I'm still finding split peas and popcorn and beans all over the house. *grumble*

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hmmm my girls will be 6 tomorrow and dear son 8 next weekend, we are still at the 'writing your name, or sneakily your sister's name on everything in biro' stage!
    Fun fun fun!!!

    ReplyDelete
  4. You're an awesome mom! And quilter, I'm still amazed at all the things you do.

    ReplyDelete
  5. My twins are 28 months younger than my oldest - all boys! You do capture the chaos so well in your post. I remember putting their dresser and everything else in the closet with a high lock on the closet door after a couple of destroyer nap times. At 11, 9 and 9 they are still a handful. Enjoy. My comment about twins is that while I wouldn't give them up for the world, I wouldn't wish them on anyone.

    ReplyDelete
  6. haha! Great post! I AM a fraternal twin (I have a brother), and my worst fear was having twins of my own. I was so relieved when both dr appointments early in both my pregnancies revealed just 1 kid! But my boys are 23 mos apart, and 2 boys are trouble too. We had to put both of our boys in beds on the floor when they were quite young (15-ish mos) after they started climbing out of their cribs, and have a similar story about a whole tube of diaper cream getting smeared all over a closet full of clothes and toys. Our house was sparely furnished and decorated for many years!! Hang in there! I'm impressed that you get any time to sew at all!! Then again, I'm sure it's your mental health therapy!

    ReplyDelete
  7. All I can say is : Well done!! Both on the creative side as well as the kiddo part :)

    ReplyDelete
  8. I did love that post. Is it bad to admit that it made me feel much more grateful for my less destructive yet still frustrating kiddos? I can't imagine having to tie everything shut! I am so glad that they are getting so much better. I can't believe that they trashed their room silently! That takes real mess making discipline. :)

    You are amazing!!!

    ReplyDelete
  9. This cracks me up, Kati. I'm glad you can keep such a good perspective! I can't imagine--I have just one kid, and he's enough of a handful without teammates!

    ReplyDelete
  10. I feel a strange sense that you would perfectly understand me. I have 5 children and my last one is the worst of the destroyers. He's 3.5 and has destroyed more things than my other 4 put together. Every day is an adventure!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Kati - you are a better woman than me! I am still so impressed at all that you get done with three little kids (and with twins!). And that crib story? Oh my goodness! Perhaps I should actually be impressed with Your twins. I can't believe that they did all that without making a peep. Little destroyers? No. More like little geniuses!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Thanks for the update - I was one of those SS people :-) I finally realized how nice is it to sew something because no matter how long it takes to get it done, it then STAYS done. Which is pretty much a rarity with anything else. Love hearing about your sweet family!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Hahaha, this is such a great post. Now I feel like I can't wait to have kids. What an adventure. But I can wait.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Thanks for the update Kati! I've learned the hard way as well that when Caitlyn is quiet is when she is doing the most destruction. We go back and forth on it ourselves here. But I only have 1 so I can reign her in more often....I can't imagine if she had comrads in arms!
    Oh and even though my girlie didn't get into the diaper cream that way, she managed to decorate her crib etc with her own brown "diaper cream". yeah. that was fun.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I remember that stage! And when my oldest was moving out of it (at about two and a half), someone asked what she wanted for Christmas. Her response: "a breakable" I must have walked around saying, don't touch that, it's breakable! Well, she got her "breakable" and guess what? She Broke It! LOL ;0

    ReplyDelete
  16. It's amazing how twins don't double the trouble/work/destruction/joy/ tears/smiles... It's like exponential to the 10th degree! I love you and those mini-destroyers. It's nice to know that difficult things eventually change somewhat. Nothing so constant as change, right? I have to agree that quilting is one of those few things that don't get undone like the rest of your house! You're a great mom Kati.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Oh man, glad you're coming out the other side of that. Now as it's going so well on the training, do you think you could come over and train my flatmate? He's nearly 30, but is still in the destructive phase...

    ReplyDelete
  18. This was such an interesting (and funny and sad) post. You seem to be doing an amazing job and coming up with clever ideas to make life work. Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  19. Okay, this post made me laugh so hard! I remember very mild-in-comparison days with my now 10 and 11 year old girls-- walking into their room and finding vaseline smeared over everything, marker all over the couch, etc. And now my 2 year old son is starting that stuff all over again. But your kids are something else! At least it will give you some good stories to tell when they are older. Kudos to you for surviving and finding a way to be creative!

    ReplyDelete
  20. Great post! I'm glad you've managed to keep your sense of humor intact! I also have three, but not twins. It is hard work that's for sure. I'm amazed if I can get anything done at all.

    ReplyDelete
  21. I have to say that your kids are VERY energetic. I've never heard of anyone else going to the lengths that you do to keep the house intact. I'm glad to see that they are maturing and life is settling back down. Keep your sense of humor!

    ReplyDelete