This weekend was pretty much devoted to rounding up Legos.
He’d recently gotten a couple of Star Wars – themed Lego building sets and decided that it was time to start in on them.
So he did what any self-respecting kid would do: tore open each of the little plastic pouches right where he sat on the couch.
I’m not sure if you’re all aware of this, but Lego blocks are created from a special kind of material that seeks the lowest, farthest in, most inconvenient nook it can if left to its own devices. This is why when you happen to allow some of these little buggers escape your grasp, they will instantly bury themselves in whatever crevice is handy. A couch makes a perfect spot for this, as it has several strata and plenty of inaccessible crannies in which to lose things.
“Daddy! I lost some pieces!” Michael cried.
“Michael, you didn’t open these up on the couch, did you?” his mother asked.
“Yes but I have all the pieces except I lost some,” he admitted.
“Well let’s gather what you have into something solid and put them aside while we look for the pieces you lost,” his mom continued. “Really, Michael, you can’t tear into packages like that on the couch! You have to do it on a flat, hard surface where things can’t get lost,” she reprimanded.
Michael grabbed a nearby Frisbee and we used that to scoop up the pieces we could see, and we set them aside.
Digging through the couch did not immediately yield any treasures, so we had to resort to lifting the cushions.
A couple of Lego studs fell out, and maybe a block or a random character’s head.
Still some missing.
Time to turn the couch modules over completely and scour the floor. Our couch is a corner sectional unit, one we chose for its ability to simultaneously contain the posteriors of everyone who might at any one time be relaxing downstairs to enjoy the fire or the television. So it does turn over, but in four chunks.
Eventually we got the sections turned over and moved out of the way. On top of this were the cushions, bolster pillows, throw pillows, blankets and other assorted flotsam.
On the floor was quite a bit of shameful detritus not reached by the vacuum. Including a couple of Lego pieces. Not the entire contingent of missing pieces, but some.
Which meant more searching.
What made things complicated was the many battalions of green army men that Michael had deployed earlier. There were several troops arrayed in various areas, mostly flanking the fireplace and the ottoman (earlier there had been a squadron deployed along the floor between the table and the couch, but an avenging foot got tired of stepping on them and swept them out of the way). These complicated matters by making a larger array of items that needed to be picked up and put away before we could search for missing pieces, which we had to do before we could vacuum.
Michael reluctantly agreed to recall his troops. As of this writing I believe they are all still on leave.
A few more shakes of the blankets and one sweatshirt revealed the last of the missing legos.
Michael received another admonishment to be more careful, and a command to pick up every single individual Lego piece.
Eventually we were able to vacuum and restore the couch to order. By Sunday afternoon the family room looked neat as a pin, and Michael’s Lego project was safely stored in a Ziploc bag.
Last night he opened up another box and started in. This time, with a set that had four times as many pieces.
Fortunately, he did it on the carpet, not on the couch. So we only lost three pieces.
I’m going to be wearing shoes in the house until the Lego phase passes.