Sunday, February 28, 2010

Wardrobe rules?

Clearly I was looking for adventure this morning as I creaked out of bed. Why else would my first stop have been to clean my closet? I just knew I couldn't calmly look the next workday in the eye shuffling through that disarray. I am trying to eliminate all potential issues, that I am aware of, in preparation for Monday mornings these days. There are plenty of fabulous surprises waiting to hurl themselves my way, so I feel it behooves me to remove known obstacles and wear a catcher's mitt. So where was I? Ah yes, trying to find the floor in the closet...

I have tried a variety of organizational techniques when it comes to my clothing. I work at a preschool/germ factory/wet paint zone. Therefore, I have a line of clothing that is either old or unattractive enough to be exposed to the risk of damage. There are my alleged "dressy" clothes, and I am not really sure where I wear those, but I like them enough to protect them. I have many mystery garments that I cannot explain the hows and whys of. I also have many shirts that I got for great prices (we're talking $3 or $4 a piece) with the intent of jazzing up my work clothes; but then I have a hard time sacrificing a brand new shirt, regardless of the price. Pants are in a category of their own because that is all about what level of comfort I am looking to achieve on any given many shapes and sizes.

Today I tried to concern myself with a fashion reality check. This is when I desperately needed some wardrobe rules spelled out for me. Clothing with expiration dates would be a plus, as it is my sense that fit is not the only thing to consider when holding onto items. I would like to see an expiration date related to the decade we are living in and also one regarding how young (or old) I should be to wear the threads in question.

I made an executive decision today to donate a jacket I recall wearing when I was first pregnant with my 9 year old daughter (um, and I don't recall wearing it since). I made this decision operating on the assumption that styles have changed? I also know I bought it on the clearance rack, so it was probably close to out of style the minute I first wore it.

Now there is an exception to the rule, still hanging in my closet. I have a great corduroy zip up shirt, still looks new, that I remember wearing when my 12 year old son was a baby. I threw it on for work one morning because I knew it had lived a good life (and was quite frankly surprised to see it still on a hanger). One co-worker complimented my shirt and asked if it was from J. Jill. What? I've never walked in there for fear of signing over my next three paychecks (and if I did go on a spree, I don't think the stuff would go in the "ok to wear to work" pile). Well didn't I feel hip? Then I wondered if that shirt should be moved to a different category in my fledgling closet organizing system!

I had some gift cards to treat myself with, and as I walked into the Gap, I wondered if I had exceeded the "you must be this young to shop at this store" requirement. Sure, there appeared to be things I could wear, but the outfits the mannequins and workers were wearing did not seem like looks I could pull off. I need that complete garanimals-these things go together--no further thought necessary information. (And even then, I get home and am at a loss for what to put on my feet, if that part of the equation wasn't purchased...which it never is!) I found a sweater that I liked, but realized I needed something to wear under it. I went to the salesgirl for help with exactly what that might be. Her response was a little bit like if I tried to explain seventh grade geometry to a preschooler. She really didn't seem to know where to start, or just how clueless to assume I was.

I just looked down at what I am wearing. Today's issue is an "oops" I have perfected called "it's only a decent outfit if you keep the sweater on". Many times I will wear an icky, ill-fitting, or just generally unflattering shirt under a lovely sweater, with complete disregard for any climate changes that might occur over the course of the day. Oh well! Even when the moon and stars are aligned in the galaxy of clothing, there is still the issue of hair and makeup...

Friday, February 26, 2010

Going "laundry"!

I have never worked for the US Postal service, so I cannot claim to understand the pressure and how people can go "postal". However, if I had to imagine a similar job, I would think it's like just keeps coming. The same thing, over and over...and over. I have heard myself utter such things as "ok--all of the laundry in the house is clean---do NOT make any more!" Lo, and behold these people keep wearing clothes.

I have two children who cannot seem to navigate food from their plates to their mouths without taking detours to their clothing! The girl usually employs a rolling technique as something saucy makes its way down the front of her shirt. The boy, on the other hand, aims low with most of his damage occurring on the bottom hems of shirts and more often on his pants. He acts surprised every time dinner finds its way onto his lap...I just expect it to be as much of a part of dinner as salad.

Laundry does seem to be the easiest way to try to restore order when the house is a mess. However, it is also a potentially dangerous chore when used as an escape route. If I say I am "doing laundry", what am I doing? Sure I gather, sort and fill the machine, but then there is a good 45 minute window where I'm really doing nothing (I have electric appliances, so I am not down by the stream with my washboard--THAT would be a chore! And aside from a spin cycle that nearly registers as a quake, there isn't much to sit and observe.) Then when it comes time to rotate the laundry, I am pretty much idle again for close to an hour. Clearly the best bet is to "do laundry" in conjunction with a variety of other fascinating household tasks, which is what I usually do, but I'm just could be dangerous. (p.s. I am doing laundry right now!)

It's putting away laundry that I don't like. I think that is because it alerts me to situations going on in our bedroom closets that I'd prefer to ignore. Our son will typically wear whatever is on top in any of his closet cubbies. (That is what we have here as I decided a few years ago that these people were not the drawer opening type...or at least not the type to keep things in drawers in a manner that would promote the closing of drawers.) If he chooses to wear something from lower in a stack, the resulting avalanche is usually left behind. Our daughter likes to change her mind in the morning (also known as not wearing anything her mother had a hand in picking out). I can't think of an occasion when things were refolded and put away, so that explains the heap in the bottom of her closet. I am not really sure what is going on in my own closet, but it's not pretty either. I decided I was not in charge of putting away my husband's laundry, and luckily (for him, I guess) there is a chair that seems to accommodate much of his wardrobe.

My only request as of late regarding the laundry was that people turn their clothing right-side out. I admit that I don't usually pay much attention until I am folding, as I try not to get too involved with the dirty laundry unless there is a pretreating issue to tend to. I tried logic..."It takes less time for you to turn your clothes right-side out before putting them in the laundry, than it takes me to have to do everyone's." I tried whining, "Oh, come on guys, I hate doing this." I tried yelling, "Oh for crying out loud, can't you people turn your clothes right-side out?!" My son says "oops, sorry", my daughter just looks at me, and my husband says...wait for'll be worth it..."The t-shirts must've turned that way in the machine!" Wow! Can you imagine our children sitting there thinking "Geesh, if she believes that, imagine the excuses we'll be able to use in our teen years?!" So apparently I have a very talented washing machine that also has a personal vendetta against me...great! Then I found it, there in the hamper, a t-shirt of his that was INSIDE OUT...on its way INto the laundry. I came running downstairs chanting "AHA! AHA! Look what I found!" (I do realize that this level of lunacy should be reserved for finding something more damning, like lipstick smears on the laundry...what can I say?) The response I got was "Oh yeah, that was sweaty and gross!" You'll be relieved to know that I did not suffocate him with his nasty shirt!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010


The victim lemon meringue pie made it safely to my friend's house. She knew I had an undamaged version, but said since she was not expecting pie, a smushy one was fine. I received a call not long after the drop off to say she needed a new one because it fell...into her mouth. Apparently she and her children had eaten half and put the rest back in the fridge. Now just when you think a pie has suffered enough...her husband put away a package of tortilla shells RIGHT ON TOP OF IT!!!!!! Now keep in mind that there was no foil or other covering on the pie...his defense was that he didn't see that it was a pie. See what happens when husbands try to be helpful and put groceries away?!?!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Not exactly willpower!

I came home today and needed some instant gratification. Yes, it would've been nice if that could've come in the the form of loving our dogs, but alas, there I was in the snack shack (literally standing just inside the door). I looked up at the 7 tubs of candy-luckily they were closed (I am not usually one to open a sealed package for my own purposes). Then I glanced down into the actual candy jar, but didn't let my eyes focus on any one item.

Anyway...there I stood thinking "Wow! Look at me not eating any of that delicious candy" Then I grabbed a handful of barbecue chips (out of an open bag, of course). On the fourth handful, I was still marveling over how I wasn't eating the candy. The dogs quickly forgave my lack of attention as chip crumbs started inevitably falling to the ground. Still proud of myself for not eating the candy, I grabbed a graham cracker and wandered away. Minutes later I was back in the shack for some dinner fixin's when I spotted the (open) chocolate covered pomegranate seeds. Well how could those count when they weren't even living in either of the two designated candy areas that I had so diligently avoided, and they're so I had about six.

Lay's potato chips sound nasty when they giggle at you!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

I Want Candy!

**Disclaimer: I realize that the real problem to be discussed is me and my relationship with candy--specifically MY other words, candy that exists in our home that I feel I have claim to AND rules regarding community/counter/candy bowl candy.**

First things first, candy is delicious! Just wanted to clear up any misconception if you were thinking I was one of those "I don't really eat candy" types. I am not an equal opportunity enjoyer though and I like to pick...sort of an all day buffet of candy suits my needs. I can't sit down to a full meal of chocolate, but could eat a pound of gummy bears or Sour Patch kids in no time. If I have acquired candy that I find so amazing that I have to parcel it out over time, I like to be able to do so (sno-caps and various dark chocolate covered goodies fall into this category). So what's the problem? Let's call him Mr. Sweet Tooth...

He has no interest in whose candy is whose, and has been known to sit looking completely innocent while some crazed PMS woman is looking for her 3 squares of chocolate she knows she tucked up in a rarely used cupboard (yeah, rarely used, EXCEPT to hide candy...duh?!) I have made requests that if candy looks like I am enjoying it, that nobody eat it (ignored), and have sought out better hiding spots (I think). The last victim of one of his candy prowls was actually our 9 year old daughter's candy, that she had won...a big box of sno-caps! She was portioning out and enjoying over time (obviously I supported that!) He finished them!!!! I felt doubly angry because #1 they were hers and #2 OK, I'd been sneaking a few a day too, and they were GONE! See, the crux of the matter is who FINISHES the treasured candy. I am not above sharing--not at all!! I just don't like things to disappear incase I "need" them.

Well, this all brings us to our household's annual rite of Valentine passage. The conversation hearts. Let's play a little "What's wrong with this picture?"

Got it? Does this look like a festive bowl of candy hearts? Pink and purple would sure make it look (and taste) better. HE ate them!! I called my friend and said "guess what this sound is?" and shook the candy bowl. She bursted out laughing when I told her it was the candy bowl because after 9 years of being close friends, she does not understand or support my candy issues (but thankfully is amused by them). Now in years past, he would've continued eating more colors (you can see he started on the orange) because he likes them all, but NECCO must've changed their formula because most of them tasted icky this year!! Basically he ate the GOOD colors--even the kids were looking for a pink heart (the least offensive flavor). I had him go to the store to get a fresh bag before we had house guests (Really! They might not come back if we are so inhospitable as to have eaten the yummy necco flavors!)

I don't know how many more years it will be before I either get over this, or presort and ration the colors before they go out for family consumption, or relegate him to his own candy bowl (oh, we know THAT won't work).

Another friend (while stifling a laugh) asked me if my siblings stole all of my candy as a kid (nice of her to pretend this was an issue worth analyzing)--I told her I was an only child until I was 12. We decided maybe that was a legitimate contributing factor in that I didn't have to ever worry about anyone taking my candy.

"Well, it's over for another year" you may be thinking, BUT...he does it with jellybeans too!!!!!

Saturday, February 20, 2010


So I had this fascinating story to tell about issues I have with candy and the people in my house I am forced to share it with, but that will have to wait BECAUSE...look what JUST happened...
There my lemon meringue pies were, minding their own business, when a strange chef, rarely seen in our kitchen, decided to scramble himself some eggs for lunch. Apparently the pepper he needed was holding up this jar of basil, giving it no choice but to jump upon the pepper's removal. I was across the kitchen eating my own lunch (that was prepared WITHOUT incident or harm to other food items) when this happened. Everyone just had that sudden hush, as if in preparation to watch the mothership explode. I disappointed them all by just continuing to shovel my macaroni into my face. I spoke only when that "chef" mentioned what he did..."oh, I know what happened".

I guess I felt maybe I had left my cooling pies in an unsafe place?

Maybe I shouldn't complain, as at least he was making his own lunch?

Perhaps I should do a better job of organizing my spice cabinet?

It'll still taste good? (oh come on--who wants that on their plate?!)

No amount of yelling was going to restore the meringue to its original pouffy state (it WAS one of my finest). So I just got up and grabbed the camera...what else could I really do? As I was photographing the pie, the "chef" pointed out that I should really put the basil jar next to it..."Oh, I thought you had cleaned that up?" I applaud his bravery in telling me how to take a picture of what he did!

The plot does thicken a little, as you see there are two pies. Both were made for dear friends...who gets the damaged goods? The people who are coming over for dinner (and right now I am not sure how that culinary experiment is going--might need the pie for the meal) OR the other friend who actually knew I was making two pies and will know I CHOSE the crater dessert for her?!?

By the way, when I went to the grocery store this morning, I accidentally bought instant lemon pudding, so I had to go back out to get cook and serve. Also, the frozen crusts were not both intact...I think the damaged meringue is on the better crust...maybe THAT is its selling point!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Why I'm this blog!

As of late it seems I have far more to say than what fits in the little box on Facebook. Rather than keep these thoughts to myself, where they tend to cause great mind clutter, or continually torture the same people over and over again whose phone numbers are on speed I am. There will be plenty of time for a proper introduction, but right now I have to get today's sighting off my chest.

I was sitting in the dentist office waiting room reading their trashy mags, when I stumbled upon an advertisement that left me looking around for someone...ANYONE I could chat with. No luck. I wrote the highlights down so I could share them here (as I could already see this info went beyond what my Facebook "status update" could handle). It said "Chocolate Chip Cookies and the time to enjoy them"...well it had me at "chocolate", but something seemed amiss...woman, living room, cat, and then the words "less time focusing on litter and doing things you love". It was an ad for KITTY LITTER!!!!! Now I have several issues with this-
1) They tarnished the good name of cookies by associating them with kitty litter.

2) I do not currently own a cat, but I do not recall changing a litter box to be so time consuming as to keep me from baking, let alone eating cookies.

3)If the smell of kitty litter has one so preoccupied, they might need something a little stronger than sugar and butter to bring them down.

4)Somebody got paid to develop this ad, and somebody else got paid to approve it.

Crazy...but maybe it's just me!