When these stumps were full, they began to empty the bags into a hole high up a tree, that had belonged to a woodpecker; the nuts rattled down--down--down inside.
"How shall you ever get them out again? It is like a money box!" said Goody.
"I shall be much thinner before springtime, my love," said Timmy Tiptoes, peeping into the hole.
Some of you may recall the story of Timmy Tiptoes, the industrious squirrel who is accused of nut theft and spends the winter becoming obese on stolen nuts. Timmy is a good little squirrel to the point that he is captured by squirrels fighting the war on terror who put him in jail in a godforsaken tree. While there he gets influenced by a down and out furry of some sort and goes downhill from there.)
Wren likes squirrels. He looks out the window and hoots when he sees one scurrying along the fence and becomes excited when I feed the crows bread and attract squirrels instead. At the Zoo yesterday we bought Wren a pair of squirrels to add to his animal collection.
[Aside: I have realized I dislike buying ONE of any animal for our animal box. It makes playing so sad. Its like buying endangered species. "Wren, here is the last tiger. It must play with this lone horse. Here is a bunny. It can play with the lonely hen." No, instead of treating the animal box as a vocabulary exercise with one of each specimen we are going to buy families of plastic horses and cows and squirrels to play in happy prolific flocks. This idea came to me as I recalled my paternal Grandmother who in a famous family tale came across a closing sale at a toystore where the animals were on a deep discount. Apparently pigs are not the most popular toy animal. There were many pigs left so she bought all the pigs. As a child we played pig farmers. I enjoyed playing pig farmers]
Well, last night I caught Wren squirreling away things under the floor. Those of you who have not visited our house may not know that our kitchen has been in the process of a remodel since well before Wren was conceived. As part of this remodel we moved the fridge and stove, revealing holes in the floor where the appliances used to be. Frost and Wren loves these holes which are now in the middle of the floor near the dishwasher. Frost shines his flashlight down the holes, I use them to hide clues (dangling on strings) in treasure hunts and I had often seen Wren sticking his fingers in them. What I did not know was that Wren has been dropping things DOWN the hole into the space between the joists, a space inaccessible from any other point.
Last night he was playing with one of the bolts from the Christmas tree base. Its a big metal thing which you screw into the holder to keep the tree upright. Its important. Without it the fancy shmancy Christmas tree base is pretty much useless. Wren was carrying it around and then there was a clunk and he started hooting and pointing at the hole.
For a kid that doesn't talk he is very expressive and it was clear that he was saying "LOOK IN THE HOLE, THE HOLE, THE HOLE MOMMY!"
I looked in the hole. It was dark dark down there.
I got the flashlight and looked in the hole and was shocked to see the Christmas tree bolt, a few forks, a shiny black stone, a wooden hammer, a baby spoon and some paper.
I said "shit, Wren. What are you doing?".
Frost looked up from his laptop army on Feudalism and said "It is not good to be cross at Wren. He is just being a baby."
I said "I am not cross, I am just surprised. I shouldn't have said that."
Frost came over and took the flashlight.
Wren started shouting and trying to hit Frost in order to get the flashlight. I asked Frost to give Wren a turn with the flashlight which Wren promptly hit Frost with and then threw it. Frost said "NOOOO, Wren." Wren shouted loudly because we took the flashlight away.
I went to find the Moo Magnet. I tied it to a piece of string and started dangling it through the hole. I managed to attract the forks, the bolt and a baby spoon.
Frost said "this is the best day of my life! This is sooo fun!"
I closed the hole with tape. This morning I found Wren dangling a fork into a smaller hole. I should not be surprised. I mean, half the day I am encouraging him to squeeze shape blocks into various brightly colored toy containers. He found another hole and is following my lead.
I taped that hole shut too.