waffle in the garland, originally uploaded by hockamama.

soon after we moved into this house, rich and his daddy took out the wall enclosing the steps, and removed the railing. they set up shop in the front yard, and set about sanding 40 years and 5 layers of paint off the rail and all the spindles. they stained it a beautiful oak color and sealed it with many coats of polyurethane. it was gorgeous…and has stayed that way until these last few months when the kittens became more mobile and started climbing it.  now there are more scratches than gleaming surface.

as I do every year, I wrapped garland and lights around the railing this past Christmas. a couple of years ago, I found the cutest lights with little bells on each bulb, and a santa face on the end of the strand that plays music and adjusts the light blinking speeds.

I guess I just didn’t think. I never thought that they would tear that garland slap up…or that they would pull E V E R Y bell off those little bulbs. every. one.  many of them shared soccer time with the baby Jesus.

when I took them down this weekend, I was actually able to salvage the piece of garland at the top of the steps, they hadn’t harmed it too much. but as you can see from this picture, the bottom piece has been virtually shredded (much like a cheap shower curtain). I think that you’re supposed to see only green, but there is quite alot of yellow visible on this piece of garland. and as you can see, the little pieces are everywhere. the steps looked like they were growing some kind of fungus for most of the season. almost as soon as it was vacuumed up, they would race up and down again, showering the carpet with more grass.

when I took it off, they set upon me like hungry little tigers who hadn’t eaten in days. I barely escaped with my fingers intact. I let them have this piece, and at one point, all four of them were snuggled up in it. they dragged it out to the kitchen and into the bathroom. they never did figure out how to get it into the tub, as I’m sure they would like to have enjoyed it simultaneously with the shower curtain.