6 Things You Always Need But Can Never Find at Home Once You Have Kids

The other day I wanted to wrap a birthday present so I went digging for the supplies I'd need: the present itself, a roll of paper, a pretty green ribbon, and ... wait, where was the tape? It wasn't in the kitchen junk drawer where I normally keep it, it wasn't stashed in my office cabinet, it wasn't carelessly tossed on the living room floor. Eventually I found the dispenser sitting on my son's bookshelf, completely empty. Nearby was a "cookbook" he'd been working on that appeared to include 40 random pieces of paper held together in a giant crackling mass of Scotch Magic Transparent Tape.

I don't even know why I bothered, really. The instant it occurred to me that I needed to wrap a present, I should have just pulled out my car keys and headed to the store, because thanks to my children, I never have tape when I need it.

In addition to wrapping tape, here are 5 other items I can never find because my damn wiener kids always steal them.


Permanent markers. It's terrifying to me that I know we own at least 10 Sharpies and yet I cannot locate a single pen. I've warned the kids that they're not allowed to use Sharpies for drawing (thanks in no small part to the Great Stained Kitchen Counter Incident of 2010), and yet I have the sinking feeling these off-limits markers have been squirreled away somewhere in their rooms. Maybe they're using them in secret? Maybe our cat isn't really a calico?

Scissors. My kids have at least three pairs of kid-friendly scissors, so why is it that they're always using my good Fiskars shears -- and leaving them in random, not-so-safe places?

String. I used to have a giant ball of kitchen twine that was useful for all sorts of things. Where did all that string go? I'll tell you where it went: "Spider-Man webs."

Printer paper and ink cartridges. My sons have a ton of paper pads, and yet every time they want to draw something, they head to the printer and yoink a piece of paper out of it. I thought it was pretty ridiculous that their school supply list included three reams of copy paper, but based on how fast it disappears at home, maybe that isn't such a deranged request. As for inkjet cartridges, I could have EASILY purchased four brand new printers for the money I've invested in keeping ours full of ink. Why does the ink run out so quickly? Because the kids are always begging me to print pictures of Legos and animals and things for them, and I'm a stupid sucker who always figures .25 worth of ink is a good investment if it gets them off my butt for 10 minutes.

Band-Aids. Why don't we have any of the multiple boxes of Angry Birds Band-Aids I feel like I end up buying once a month? Because all the bandages are stuck to stuffed animals. Why don't they just use easily-removed tape for their weird little veterinarian projects? BECAUSE ALL OF THE EFFING TAPE IS GONE.

What household items are your kids always hoarding?

Image via Linda Sharps

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