It was a quiet evening at the Loux home last night. And if you buy that, you’re more gullible that I thought!
We had company for dinner. The kind of company that I had only met once for 5 minutes. The kind of company that has you thinking, “Oh my gosh, this could go really bad and they could quite possibly not like us when the evening is over.” There are a lot of us, and three of us are busy, little, and unpredictable.
We had a great dinner accompanied by violent outbursts from Aiden and high pitched shrill shreiking from Elia as she expressed her irritation with Aiden. Aiden was just not himself. He’s either really on or really off. And Aiden was in rare grumpy, mean form. Very sad considering our little man is normally a comedic charmer.
I don’t remember dinner but it was far from your “sit and chat leisurely at the dining room table” kind of dinner. Dinner ended, and John and I put the three grouchy toddlers in bed, while our NEW friends totally cleaned up the kitchen. These are the kind of people we plan to keep around for a very long time. Anyone who can step into our madness and go with the flow is a keeper.
After multiple trips up and down the stairs for binkies, sippy cups, and extra kisses, we finally all cozy up for some “getting to know you, getting to know all about you” kind of conversation. A few moments later, Elia calls out rather loudly and dramatically for Daddy to come. John heads up the stairs and response back rather loudly, “Oh NO, I DO NOT believe it.”
I dart up the stairs and Alice says, “We brought our ponchos!” This only after she had been warned on Facebook by our dear friend Marcus Smith, to be prepared for flying poop. You got it. Aiden was emptying his diaper. Good news though. Elia had tattled in time to prevent some serious damage.
Mess cleaned up. Messy boy cleaned up. Meaningful conversation could now officiall begin.
We spent the next few hours getting to know some amazing new friends Joshua and Alice Scott and their daughter, Emma (almost 2). It was one of those beautiful, “God is really in this,” kind of evenings.
The toddlers now sound asleep, we gradually moved to the lower levels of the house. The family room for some drama “show and tell,” and then to the basement to look at Nick’s photography and some videos the kids had done.
At that point the smoke detector started blarring! Everyone did that freeze for a mili-second and then blolt maneuver so common in the midst of disaster. Isabelle, Taylor and I got to the top of the family room stairs and saw smoke. I screamed out for help, and darted around the corner into the kitchen only to see my entire dining room centerpiece in flames leaping about 2 feet up off the table. Apparently the candles that I had forgotten to blow out had burned down and caught the rest of the centerpiece on fire. We were minutes from having the table runner catch on fire which would have been bad news. Really bad new. I don’t know enough about fire to know how much time we would have had til it would have been too late for that corner of the house, but I don’t think it was much.
I grabbed a kitchen towel, threw it over the fire, and then wrapped the table runner around the whole thing. It was out in seconds. The living room, kitchen, and dining room were FULL of smoke. John and Josh got the smoldering mess out of the house and got the doors and window open.
Nick said at one point, “We’re just making memories!’
But here’s the bottom line, I had just put a new battery in the smoke detector a few months back when we remodeled the family room. I remember doing it, but it is honestly something I have never been really good at. It just happened that it was down after painting the ceiling and I checked it. That little $10 plastic smoke detector saved our home last night, and possibly our toddler’s lives. I don’t know how long it would have been until we smelled the smoke in the basement or until one of us went upstairs for something. But smoke rises. And at the top of our short flight of living room stairs are three precious toddlers.
November 1st is the time change for daylight savings time. That’s when they encourage us to all “Change our clocks, change our batteries.” In 20 years I have never paid much attention to that. Yesterday was my wake up call. I urge you change your batteries, and if you don’t have smoke detectors, GET THEM NOW!