Skip to content

Prairie Wool: Missing and presumed lost

Children a common denominator.
The fate of the set of quality sheets I’d bought for the guestroom bed remains shrouded in mystery a quarter of a century later.

Ever had household items go strangely missing from your home? I’m not talking about socks, the last Oreo or a book you lent to Aunt Fiona. That sort of stuff always disappears, and we understand it. Well, maybe none of us really gets the sock thing. Socks that go into the washer/dryer and are henceforth never seen again defy explanation. No. I’m talking about things like casserole dishes, expensive sheets and tablecloths. Stuff that has no business getting up and shuffling out the door to go goodness knows where.

At least in my case, the common denominator is children, with a possible dog thrown in for good measure. You can tell me yours later.

There have been countless incidents, but one of the first was when my children were young, and I couldn’t find the set of quality sheets I’d bought for the guestroom bed. I looked everywhere. Naturally, I lined my kids up against a wall and interrogated them closely.

“You must have seen them?” I probed. “They’re new. I washed the bloody things yesterday and hung them on the line to dry.”

The children shook their heads, gazing at me with wide, blameless eyes that reflected innate morality and goodness. Their faces wore the pained expression of decent people falsely accused of a heinous crime. Nearby, the dog sat in a similar state of grovelling innocence.

“You mean those green ones?” Rebecca burst out.

I rounded on her. The kid knew something. But before I could pry it forth, her eyes slid toward Chris, the instigator, and parrot-like she responded. “Nope, haven’t seen ‘em.”

Those kids are now in their 30s and still haven’t broken their vow of silence.

Then there was my best casserole, a small serving bowl and two springform pans, to name only a few more. I find it hard to believe a heavy, red casserole dish would exit the premises on its own steam and make its way, unaccompanied, to seek the bright lights of the city. However, that was the very story I was given by those same children when I questioned them yet again.

The serving bowl turned up at Dad’s, somehow. He had the grace to look a little abashed when I caught him early one morning, spooning a helping of hot cereal into its depths.

“You won’t take it though, right Helen,” he said in a wheedling tone. “It makes a dandy porridge bowl.”

I sighed. No, of course, I wouldn’t take it.

Recently, I was asked to make a dessert baked in a springform pan. I searched high and low for it. Nothing. From past experience, I texted my son, the same Chris who led the green sheet brigade back in 1997, and asked him if he’d seen them.

While he initially denied responsibility, lo and behold, he sheepishly showed up at my door with two, along with a saucepan and several dinner plates, all thrown in for good luck. What a guy! He claims I gave him the dishes to carry food home, but he did lead several family revolts in his glory days, and I’m not sure he can be entirely trusted.

In any case, I got them back and will guard them jealously from this point on. However, the mystery of the missing sheets and my best casserole remain unsolved until this day.

Could you tell a similar tale?


push icon
Be the first to read breaking stories. Enable push notifications on your device. Disable anytime.
No thanks