You're lying in a hammock.
The sun is shining and you have a tall glass of your favorite drink within reach.
You are on chapter 3 of a great book and the only thing you can hear is the birds playing in the breeze.
(Insert sound of record screeching here)
IT'S QUIET ENOUGH TO HEAR BIRDS?
WHAT ARE THE KIDS UP TO?!?!
THIS CAN'T BE GOOD!!!
Anyone who has ever cared for a small child will tell you that the one thing you don't want to hear from them while in another room is silence.
Before the age of 8, children have no idea that sound carries. A child under 8 can't figure out how in the world you knew they just jumped off their bed when you were all the way down the hall.
Mom must have eyes in the back of her head!
When Matthew (almost 9) is in his room for hours and silent- which is rare, but possible- I can be 99.9% certain that he's behaving.
Steven (4 1/2)... not so much...
Silence is never good when there are unattended children around! NEVER!!!
The search for silent toddlers will usually result in something that requires a mop, bleach and/or putting something or someone in the bathtub.
I never leave Steven unattended for very long. I regularly peek into his room or in the basement to see what he is up to. Usually, whatever he is doing involves some type of action figure. He has 'action figures' of all sorts which he refers to as his "guys". Guys is a general term that can mean a Playmobil Pirate, a Star Wars Galactic Hero, G.I. Joe, Imaginext Knight or any of the menagerie of mini plastic things that have arms or legs; animals are often included.
Side note: I learned from Matthew long ago that they are, in fact, 'action figures' and not 'dolls'.
It is widely known that when there are more than one of Steven's guys in his possession, they MUST! DO! BATTLE! It's a requirement that supersedes the entire time-space continuum (to steal a term from Back to the Future) as a knight is very often fighting an Army guy or a pirate. It is not uncommon to see Darth Vader fighting himself, either... there are simply too many in this house for that not to happen now and again.
When a battle of the guys takes place, there is also a need for sound effects. I mean, how on earth can a sword hit a person... excuse me... guy without making some sort of crashing noise?
That's where the "CH" comes in. "CH" is the universal sound for anything coming in contact with anything else.
Whenever I hear a barrage of "CH"s I know that Steven is playing in a relatively safe manner... or so I thought. That is until he discovered the Spongebob Squarepants episode, Karate Island.
Imagine tae bo on a sugar rush...
with sound effects...
Yea, its like that.
So now, if there is even the slightest pause in the "CH"-ing or if it is suddenly accompanied by thuds and actual crashes, I know to make a bee-line to wherever Steven is and make sure the drywall is still intact.
I've also noticed that despite the sound and background music included, it is necessary to continue the "CH"-ing whilst playing every Gameboy game. It' actually kinda cute.
So no matter how many, many, many, many, many times I hear "CH" each day, I am thankful that he's keeping busy and getting his cardio workout; and that the silence serves as an early warning system for moms.