Monday, April 7, 2014

The One With the Ninja Turtle in the Sewer

This weekend was glorious. Glorious!

Finally, two days where the kids could get out and run. I tried to take advantage of the nice weather and we had a great day on Saturday running at the park and hanging out with the cutest little cousin in the world.

Sunday was even nicer and after bribing the Lady with two donuts from Dunkies, I got her complain-free to CCD and took the other two on a quick Walgreen's run. QT was owed a few things for his exemplary potty work over the past few days. (More on the pants-less Friday night diner dinner later. I am still recovering.)

So the Little Lady, QT and I headed into the drugstore and purchased the remaining three Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Water Squirters for the tub. Raphael made it to our house last week, but he was lonely in the tub for his buddies. The Little Lady decided that QT could have Leonardo, Michelangelo would belong to her and the Lady could have Donatello. We left there feeling pretty good.

After picking up the Lady and spending some time painting the bucket of rocks the Ladies collected at the park on Saturday, we all headed outside. QT wanted to bring the Ninja Turtles. Fine. Why not? I mean they are bath toys, why shouldn't we bring them outside to play?

Rock painting. QT had so much water on his brush that they basically dried devoid of paint!
So we spent the next hour or so riding bikes, drawing with chalk, finding all the things my husband and I had banished to the garage in an attempt to declutter the house, and tossing around Ninja Turtle heads.

QT has quite an arm and took great pleasure in chucking those things around. Of course it landed in the storm drain. Immediate tears from the Little Lady as she drove by on her bike, immediate panic by me when I realized that I might not be able to recover poor Michelangelo from the depths of the drain.

Now the irony is not lost on me that we lost a TMNT in a storm drain. Perhaps Mikey just wanted to go home? Maybe he was just being his typical jokster self? Regardless, we were a man down and I was going to do everything I could to recover that turtle from the sewer.

After I calmed down the Little Lady, I had a supermommy/McGuyver moment. I am going to get that turtle head out of the drain. I don't know how, I don't know when, but I am going to do it. 

Now the storm drain in the driveway is pretty typical with the grate and the open area QT clearly didn't miss.

We could see Michelangelo grinning up at us, nestled in a pile of wet leaves. So I headed to the garage to see what I could do. I found a long pole that I think someone might have used at one point for painting. It wasn't me, not sure where it came from but it seemed long enough to reach the bottom. My other thought was to attach a bucket to some rope and then try to scoop it up. While I was looking for some rope, I came across a roll of duct tape. We all know how versatile that is so I unrolled some, stuck it to the bottom of the pole and shoved it through the grate until it hit Mikey on the head. To my great relief, he stuck to it and I started the slow and careful climb to the top of the grate. The kids were gathered around and the Lady kept saying that we could buy a new one if we couldn't recover this one.

I wanted to give her a teachable moment in this toss away society that we live in. I wanted to show her that everything isn't just replaceable. I also didn't want to have to go back to the drug store with the three of them and attempt to navigate the Easter aisle.

So there was Mikey, his little green head affixed to some serious duct tape as I carefully tried to raise him from the underground. We were pretty close to the top before he fell off. Ugh.

Now what? I tried another piece of tape, but Michelangelo was now wet and the tape didn't stick to him. I thought about trying to lower down a towel to dry him off (I know that sounds really stupid, but I was now desperate!). So we headed back into the garage, where I came back to my original idea of scooping this thing up in some sort of bucket. All the beach buckets were too big to fit through the opening, but the blue Solo cup looked like it might do.

I duct taped that Solo cup to the end of that pole and stuck it in the opening of the grate. I then took a broom and stuck it through the grate and was able to push Mikey into the cup and once again start that slow and steady climb up. This time we were ready and I had the Lady reach her hand into the grate to grab the cup as it made its way to the top.

Success. Mother of the year. Heroes in a half shell! Turtle Power!

After the rescue.

Needless to say Mikey got a thorough bath before he joined anyone in the bath later last night. 

Shredder be warned, this mama isn't going to let anything get in the way of some TMNT tub time.


  1. I love that shirt that QT is wearing- it was one of my favorites for the Wild Man! Congrats on the TMNT success.

    1. Hopefully it will continue. Have had a few missteps along the way. . .