Covert Ops & Kids

Not too many things motivate creativity like the fear of getting caught.

We bought a Playstation for our kids this Christmas. My Husband even braved Black Friday at Wal-mart alone to snag one of those snazzy bundle deals. While he stood in line, three people back from the estimated run-out point, I was home poised on-line as our back-up, staking out Amazon and Bestbuy.com and praying my newborn didn’t wake at the wrong moment.

It was definitely a nail-biting, clock-watching moment.

An hour later, my Husband escaped with the prize and we squirreled it away in my closet.

However, as great as the bargain was in terms of money, the stress may do me in. It wasn’t long before it started unraveling.

“You know, we really should check and make sure it works,” I said. “You know, just in case.”

My Husband looked at me and laughed. “You’re cute.”

I think we made it til Monday.

By then it was my Husband who asked, “Do you think the kids would even notice? I mean, if we hooked it up and put it on the top of the entertainment cabinet, it’s rather high up there and they never look up there.”

I smiled. “Well, except they can see it from the second story, especially when they’re chasing foam bullets and thrown bean bags.”

“True.” He sighed. A few minutes later… “What if I put a box overtop of it?”

Now it was getting serious and I was ready with the solution. New stuff up there might catch their attention, but one of those re-useable grocery bags had been put up there already, a blue one. We simply removed the contents and once we were done trying out the equipment, we would slide the PS3 into the bag. The controllers were far more dangerous so we hide them up in our bedroom.

Well, as with any illicit addition, one time became two and so on. Sundays are off limits and there have been nights when we had to go to bed early or the night I had to finish a critique, but otherwise, most night since then…

It’s done wonders for getting the kids to bed at a regular hour. Then we busy ourselves for a while to make sure that they are truly asleep and not just reading in bed. Once they are, we sneak down to the tv.

I don’t know what’s more tense – life or death moments when my little sackboy is jumping over a fiery pit, or each creaky noise from upstairs.

“What was that?” And both of us will stare up the stairs, dreading. We’re in the direct line of sight so there’s not even any hope of a fast cover-up. Just one sighting by a kid old enough to talk and it would be all over.

This morning, as my children finished breakfast, I went to put a CD in our DVD player that we’ve been using for music. Disc in hand I glanced up to see the blue bag sitting on the shelf and the PS3 bare to the world.

I panicked.

For the next couple hours I felt like Bob the tomato in Lyle, the Kindly Viking, trying desperate to distract Olaf.

Climbing up to try and cover it with any of the kids around was way too risky. So, instead I tried hard to lure them into other rooms and suddenly had lots for them to do in preparing for our car trip of the day. The kids got to pick out their own snacks and drinks and do most of the packing.

However, being our living room, there was plenty of time spent in the room. Whenever one of them glanced anywhere near that general direction, my pulse raced. Any minute I knew I’d hear “Hey, what’s that up there?”

Time crawled and far earlier than we would usually go, I handed off the car keys to my oldest and the band eagerly rushed for the door.

As soon as I made sure my 2-year-old was securely buckled in, I returned to the house for the baby and my purse.

I locked the front door – just in case- and climbed up to pull the blue bag over the game system.

I sighed. My secret was safe.

At least for one more day…


Lesson learned:

I pity the criminals who really do have something to hide – always dreading discovery.

Truly – wickedness never is happiness.

As far as I’m concerned, it’s a heart attack waiting to happen…

About Ren Black

Part-time novelist. Weekend artist. Full-time Mother. Ex-poet. Perfectionist by training. Compulsive researcher sporadically. Prone to fits of linguistic commentary Unorthodox Renegade occasionally. Sarcastic by habit... Dreamer Always... Consider Yourself Warned

11 comments on “Covert Ops & Kids

  1. Now that is hilarious. At least you only have a few more weeks to go, right? 😀

    • Yeah, no kidding! Although, we are planning to let them in on the fun Christmas Eve instead of waiting until Christmas day. The reason being that the 25th is Sunday, and as I said, it’s off-limits at our house for stuff like that. We talked about it, but figured even starting off with an “exception” would be bad. So we’ll let them play that night and then enjoy the other presents on Christmas day. We got four controllers so we figure we’ll wrap them up and let each kid open one.

      The more spiritual Christmas Eve events will be held earlier in the day.

      Of course, that’s all assuming we don’t get caught before then…
      Thanks, Kessie, and glad you enjoyed it.

  2. Ha! I have stories in this realm. When the kids were little there wasn’t a toy Quinton didn’t “test” before it was wrapped. LOL

    • lol. Yep, there definitely are a few perks of parenthood. And it’s not like it’s a double standard. As I told you on the phone, my Husband “tested” my gift too. lol. And now he’s stuck with it!

      Last year he picked out a remote control car for our son – Granted, he didn’t test it out before, but since then he sure has spent more time at the “wheel” than our son.

  3. LOL! How funny, Ren! I hope you don’t get caught–and, as parent, I have to say, I’m glad you’re enjoying the perks of toy-buying… 😉

  4. The girls are both getting a Leappad for Christmas, and Ray is dying to try them out and get the apps loaded on them. lol…

    You know, you could always reveal the PS3 on the 13th (the first of the 12 days of Christmas). lol…

    • Actually–Not to be too contrary here, but going by either the Catholic or Orthodox church calendars or the church calendar of any offshoot such as the Anglicans–the first day of the twelve days of Christmas is historically counted as Christmas Day, and the last day of the twelve days is December 6th, known as the Feast of Epiphany or just “Epiphany.”

      The period we’re currently in now, which continues up through Christmas Eve, is called the Season of Advent–again, historically the period of fasting, prayer and contemplation that precedes the feast of Christmas in the traditional church calendars–where we get the lighting of the Advent candles, and Advent calendars, and the carol, “O Come, O Come, Emanuel.” And also, the feast of St. Lucia, and a few other feast days along the way.

      • lol, It’s okay you two.

        Though risky, I am enjoying my private game time with my Husband. It’s so much quieter and more cooperative than the times I’ve attempted to play alongside the kids. Besides, they’ve had a ton of game time at a friend’s house while neither I or my Husband have contested them for turns. Seriously, we’re just trying to catch up!

      • lol…actually, I knew that. Man, where is my head?

  5. Thanks for the early morning laugh! good luck with continued concealment;)

  6. […] 5. Successfully got one of those snazzy Black Friday Wal-mart Bundles! This was our first ever venture into the legendary Black Friday rush. No injuries. We got a PS3 to help motivate the kids in chores. Oh, and no, we never got caught. […]

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