We live in an old squeaky house. The floors squeak, the stairs squeak, the doors squeak, even the door knobs squeak. It’s just a squeaky house. I never knew how squeaky it was until we had a sleeping baby in the house. So I’ve made myself an expert at knowing where all the squeaky spots are and how to avoid them. I need to skip certain steps, and tip-toe over others. Now I can maneuver through my house without making a sound as if I were a ninja or a hired assassin. I’m even a master at closing the doors without making any noise. Since I put so much effort in keeping a quiet house when my kid is sleeping, is it too much to ask that the rest of my neighborhood does, too?

Since the weather has finally cooled off a little bit, I’ve been able to open the windows and get some fresh air again. It’s a pretty quiet morning, a soft cool breeze flows through the house. You can hear an occasional car in the distance or a cute petite bird chirping. It is truly peaceful outside. But as soon as Ellie falls asleep in her crib… CHOOO CHOOO! A train comes rattling through! I fly upstairs Matrix style to see is she wakes up. Luckily, she seems okay. That was close. SQUAWK! SQUAWK! What happened to the cute birds!? It sounds like a flock of hawks are circling my house. Now what’s this!? The street cleaner machine!? I’ve never, ever, seen the street cleaner guy come anywhere near the house. Now the neighbor’s dogs are barking. I HATE those dogs. These aren’tjust normal barking dogs either. It’s sounds like the neighbors are hosting a dog fighting championship in their backyard. The things I would give to be rid of those dogs. What I think about doing to those dogs is too despicable to even mention. Just when I think it’s over, at least 10 people decide to cut their grass right at the same time! Now you’re probably thinking, “idiot! Why don’t you just shut the window in Ellie’s room?” This is a good idea, but I’m still in training on how to pull off such a maneuver without waking her up. I am a ninja, but only an entry level one. Before Ellie wakes up, three more trains go by, a freighter on the river blows its whistle, a group of door-to-door evangelists rings the door bell and starts quoting Bible verses, and a pack of noisy kids walks in front of the house. I’m staring at the baby monitor watching the red lights flicker up and down. My heart is racing. My nerves are on edge. I’ve been pacing around the house, drinking coffee, and cussing under my breath at all the noise makers. Will this be a real nap?  or with this be a 20 minute fake out?

Finally, all the chaos and noise subsides and Ellie peacefully wakes up. I walk in the room and she flashes her big smile. She looks happy and well rested. We come downstairs and she sits in front of the door. She crawls towards the screen and looks back at me with a look that says “did I miss anything?”

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