I knew the house seemed eerily quiet for too long.
When I went to see what they were up to, I found Trouble with a smirk on his face, his guilt-ridden accomplice, and this:
One thing I remembered not to do was freak out with the fury of a mother scorned, but to calmly march them to the bath letting them know that they would receive a good spanking later in loving discipline---when I got over the fact that my carpets, walls, and floors were now stained with red ink.
After the spanking, I got buckets of tears mixed with a repentant "I'm sorry, Mom", and they knew they were naughty, but they also knew that I loved them, still. If I had started screaming at first---which the urge was so strong after seeing the stair rails bleeding red--I think they would have seen some serious anger, and felt love with conditions. I feel good about the way I handled that. Let's hope this is the last time I'll have to see my house destroyed by two little curious boys. Yeah, right.