Zoey likes to hide things in random places. For example, I’ve found my cell phone in her toy bus, the dog’s ball wedged into one of my slippers and God only knows where she put the ten binkies we are currently missing. She especially loves putting things in one of the cupboards in our kitchen–the one with all of our plastic bowls in it. One time, Greg and I spent a good twenty minutes looking for my cell phone–calling it from Greg’s phone and everything–only to find it nestled in one of our bowls, lovingly put there by little hands that were clearly up to no good.
Zoey also likes to help Daddy fill and empty the dishwasher (she also does this at Poppy’s house). Her idea of helping is unloading the small saucers or her plastic baby plates and carrying them around the house for a couple of minutes until Greg or I catch up with her. Or she sets them on the floor and walks away. But her absolute favorite is the silverware holder.
Think about it. The plastic holder is right on her level and it’s always filled with lots of shiny utensils (yes, Greg, she probably gets her love for shiny things from me. Har har). So, it’s actually pretty commonplace at our house to see Miss Zoey walking nonchalantly around the kitchen with a random spoon. She probably just got it out of the dishwasher, of course (before you worry, we only let her play with the clean ones and never the knives because hospital visits can be EXPENSIVE).
All of this is fine except Zoey recently connected her love of hiding things with her love of helping daddy, in this case, fill the dishwasher.
Behold. This was, up until a couple of days ago, Zoey’s favorite toy:
The radio is removable so that kids can carry it around with them. In our case, Zoey took that radio pretty much everywhere. It travelled to all three sets of grandparents’ houses, not to mention in the car on the way to run errands, outside to play, EVERYWHERE. It had a play button, a shuffle button and a stop button and holy crap, that was more than enough to rock Zoey’s world. And see that round, green thing? That’s a wheel for navigating through all of the loaded songs sung by Dora and her friends. Oh. EM. Gee.
Zoey loved that thing and Greg and I were, for the most part, able to tolerate hearing the same songs over and over again. After all, when Zoey pushed the button to play the ‘We Did It’ song and then she’d look up at us and smile, our hearts couldn’t help but melt a little. So we gritted our teeth and listened to ‘John Jacob Jingleheimershmidt’ and ‘Rain, Rain’ five billion times (although Greg and I both recently admitted to each other that when we saw Zoey had hidden her Dora radio in one of our cupboards, neither of us removed it. We both just quietly shut the door and walked away, not saying a word to each other about it until now).
She just thought it was the coolest thing in the world–and maybe that’s why she felt the need to put it in the dishwasher. Not just in the top part where Greg would most likely see it and grab it before shutting the door. Oh no. Zoey put her beloved Dora radio in the silverware holder. Nestled between forks and spoons, it went through the wash and dry cycles without anyone but Zoey knowing it was there.
Greg found it when he went to empty the dishwasher.
I was in the shower with Zoey (her other new obsession is taking a shower any time we’re near the tub) at the time, singing ‘Old MacDonald Had a Farm’ at the top of my lungs (her favorite song). She was giggling at my moo sounds when Greg opened the door and said, “Guess what I just found in the dishwasher.” I opened the door to the shower just a crack. Fifty dollars? Our dozens of lost binkies? I asked him what and he replied, “Zoey’s D-O-R-A-R-A-D-I-O.” Dear God, we’re at the spelling stage already.
I would not be lying if I said my heart plummeted a little bit when I heard the news. That was Zoey’s favorite radio. It made her so happy. And sometimes one of those songs was long enough for Mommy to get the coffee maker going in the morning without having a little voice begging for Oreos and that same little person whining to be picked up and balanced on my hip. I MISSED THAT RADIO ALREADY.
Greg was holding the water-soaked radio in his hand, tell-tale drips making paths down his wrist. Zoey couldn’t see because she was at the far end of the tub, playing in the spray of the water that was barely touching her.
“What should I do?” Greg asked and we shared one of those we’re-still-new-at-this-but-we’re-in-it-together looks.
What COULD we do? What would the books say to do? What would the best parents in the world do?
I looked Greg dead in the eye. “Hide it,” I hissed before shutting the shower door and resuming my singing.
And that is why Zoey’s beloved Dora radio is currently out of sight. Greg took the batteries out of it and he’s giving it time to thoroughly dry before attempting to get it to work again. I’m thinking Dora has left the building; that radio will never work again. But a part of me still hopes.
In other news, when I picked Zoey up from my mom’s house last night, Mom informed me that Zoey has grown attached to a Barney stuffed animal she found. And yes, it plays that stupid ‘I Love You’ song. As adorable as Zoey is carrying the purple dinosaur around the house, I would much rather listen to Dora’s long list of tunes over Barney’s song any day.
Barney. Why did her replacement for her Dora radio have to be Barney?
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