In my Grandmother's Chest

One of my favourite childhood 'in the car games,' for long journeys from my own childhood of course, not my own children's. As I stand at the check out at Target, I stock up on essential supplies for the forthcoming holiday. I have a smug and self satisfied expression at my collection of purchases.

I have enough Play dough for several days because now I am the proud 'owner' of a seven and a half year old and a six year old who no longer consider playdough to be the substance from hell. They can touch it, they can squish it, tolerate the stench of it's perfume, permit their bodies and clothing to be contaminated by it. Ah yes, life is good.

A very smart woman behind me, [translation = nattily attired] surveys the conveyor belt and smiles at me in a friendly manner. The huge carton of pull-ups, 65 – 125 lbs catches her eye. Bit of a give away.

I have enough mouth wash to kill every bacterium from here to San Francisco and back again. Enough 'Ensure' to ensure that I will be able to refuel at high speed.

Otherwise I have three of everything. It is always a mistake to try and match gifts to the personality and preferences of an individual child. The net result is always the same, everyone likes one particular item and no-one likes the other two. If you wish to commence warring factions in the confines of your own home then this is the best place to start. Having said that, although each item is identical to it's fellow, due to the joys of mass production, someone will determine an identifying feature, flaw or anomaly, that will ensure that each is distinguishable, preferred or disowned.

I now have enough cleaning materials to make sure that the house remains sterile. This in turn will enable me to continue the on-going food campaign. In most households, food that falls to the floor is discarded as unsanitary and contaminated. In this household, that rule is reversed, because small intelligent people learn fast. Their solution to any food campaign is to deposit my nutritional choices on the ground. Parents need to acquire nerves of steel, so as to be able to endure the sight of their children licking the floorboards. This is not a job for the faint hearted.

My eye drifts over the contents of the trolly behind me. [translation = cart] I am a dry, old stick of a woman. I refuse to permit myself to make any disparaging assumptions, cast any aspersions or otherwise make judgments about her catering pack of multicoloured, flavoured con I have it on good authority that they serve a wide variety of purposes. I determine to remain “open minded,” it would be dreadful if my

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