When five young cousins sleep over in a small living room, sleep isn’t usually on their minds.  One particular night, Jeff, Dan, Tim, Katy, and Mark were supposed to be getting settled down for the night.  Sleeping bags and blankets covered the floor as they claimed their territory.  Teeth were brushed and jammies on.  I turned off the main lights, “Goodnight, everybody.”

It was calm for a few minutes.  Then I heard, “Steamroller!”  Jeff began the game they had made up which basically had no rules except that the one who yelled, “Steamroller” got to roll over everyone else on the floor.  Arms and legs flailed amid giggles and occasional “Ouch!”  Soon everyone was on top of everyone else with blankets tangled up like spaghetti.  “Go to sleep!” I hollered from the basement.

Quiet again, I think.  I breathe and listen.  The rowdy sounds slowly start to grow again – then bedlam!  Who had called “Steamroller” this time?  I marched up the stairs, ready to read the riot act.

“Listen, you guys, it’s time to go to sleep and I don’t want to hear a peep out of you.”

“Peep,” said Tim.

I gave up and suppressed my own giggle all the way downstairs.

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