Here’s the apple, there’s the tree…it didn’t fall far.

When I was in about fourth grade, we lived in a great two story house in Hudson, Wisconsin, a small town within spitting distance of the Twin Cities. My room was situated just above the back porch overlooking a vast field and miles of forest. It was an idyllic place to grow up, full of exploration, sledding, and outdoorsy fun! Another cool thing about my room was the fact that I could climb right out my window and sit on the roof, or at least the part of the roof that hung over the porch. I did this on occasion feeling very rebelious and super cool. I’d sneak out there, sit for a minute, then hustle back inside before my mom caught me. I never asked if I could do this because I had the slightest feeling that perhaps she would not think too favorably of what I thought a marvelous idea. I had day dreams of sitting out there, reading one of my new Babysitter’s Club books, breathing in the fresh air that whipped out of the trees and into our back yard. It made me feel just like the little girl in The Secret Garden, who always had a fun and unique place to sit while reading.

Well, one day, I got real balls and decided I wanted to explore further. I don’t know where my parents were that I had such gall to give this a try, but they were apparently a safe enough distance away that all commen sense was able to flee my scrawny body and lead me into the way of stupidity – a common ailment of youth. I tentatively tiptoed down this stretch of roof, past my brother’s window and followed the roof up to the right where it got really steep and really high. My goal was to make it to the chimney and survey the land around me, then go back to my room, victorious. My plan would have been fool proof had it not been for the nest of horse flies that I stepped in on my ascent. Suddenly swarm by giant, hungry creatures, their kaleidescope eyes surveying their next meal, my brain screamed, “abort, abort!” Biting my lip to keep from calling out and bringing undo attention to myself, I made a hasty retreat, nearly sliding off the roof to a certain hospital visit. Luckily, I caught myself and managed to get back into my room in one, albeit slightly swollen from the bites of about 500 flies (okay maybe not that many…) piece. I’m not sure if my mom and dad ever heard that story so if this is the first time, uhhhh sorry I did that?

Aaaanyway, my point is that today as I was watering my plants and Sloan was supposed to be having rest time, I suddenly look over and the little Houdini is standing in the landscaping outside his window all proud and beaming. He figured out how to unlock his window, push it open, push up the screen and climb out. Thankfully, we live in a ranch so this is not that big of a deal, save for the fact that I have no doubt he will do this again, and likely at a time when we are not watching because doggonit if the kid isn’t just like me! And if we ever move into a house with second story bedrooms, you better believe there will be some kind of alarm attached to it because I know a little too much about what Sloan is thinking in that adorable little head of his. Of course, I’ve no doubt he will outsmart me at some point and that someday he will probably share a story with me of the dumb things he did as a child while I unknowingly went through my day thinking my little angel was in his room reading. What goes around comes around huh?


  1. OK – I’m certainly not going to speak for either your mom or your dad – but I am going to guess that they will certainly get an extreme amount of enjoyment out of hearing of Sloan’s escapade right after learning of yours for the first time. By the way, that tree might actually have nuts instead of apples! Enjoy your trip.

  2. Byshka says

    Yes, that is the first time I heard that story. I know that you were good at sneaking out your bedroom window in the basement when you were a senior in high school. But 4th grade? And as scared as you are of bees, wasps, and hornets, I am surprised you didn’t fall trying to get away from them. Oh there will come a time when I will share many stories with your kids and hope that they can top them!


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