Posts Tagged ‘home’

It started with a simple desire to do a little cleaning while the tallish minion was in school, and the smallish one was on vacation with his dad. Nothing major, just a little Spring Cleaning without their input and hysterics when I tossed half of the 137 stuffies in the donation bag and threw out a few dozen Happy Meal boxes.

It ended with a destroyed kitchen, a pickup with the bed overflowing, and a storage room emptied and repurposed. Throw in a sprained knee, 9 new bruises, and a sore back. Add the help of two WONDERFUL friends.

The ultimate result was that the minions’ shared room became the tallish one’s room, and the storage room became the smallish one’s room. He finally has a room of his VERY OWN, and the video I have of him screaming I LOVE IT is completely worth the hassle.

I thought I was done for a while, except for the storage stuff purged into the kitchen and the poor truck that needed emptied.

I was wrong.

The first night gave me a new respect for nurses in nursing homes where each grumpy patient has a call button. One needed medicine, the other chocolate milk. While I was in the opposite room, Orange Kitty decided to somehow unplug the smallish one’s TV. Screaming ensues.

While I’m fixing the TV, the tallish one shrieks from her room. The medicine I’d just given her included some oil for an ear infection, complete with cotton ball. The panic was…”my cotton ball just got lost down my ear and is stuck in my throat.”

Ummm…

I fished the cotton ball out of her sheets, assured her that cotton balls will NOT travel from her ear to anywhere else inside her. This was about the time something touched the back of my knee.

I screamed, she screamed, and her little brother bolted, yelling “I just wanted night-night kisses!!!”

Sometime a couple hours past bedtime, I finally peeked in on two snoring minions, in their own beds, in their own rooms. It was a tough decision not to take a photo of each, because they were just too darn cute…I’m pretty sure the flash would have woken them up and worn out the cuteness real quick.

Advertisements

I have been accused of multiple personalities. My husband claims there are seven, and has them named (Roxy, Tuesday, TJ, Willow, Sparky, Oscar, and iAm…someday I’ll write their bios). I’m not sure which personality is the PackRat, but she’s there…and the nemesis of Oscar, the one with OCD.

It makes for an interesting combination.

Oscar vs. The PackRat

See, the laundry HAS to be clean. Absoposilutely, no getting around it, GOTTA be washed…then it can sit in the laundry basket until we wear it again.

Dishes? Must be washed. Then they get used right outta the dishwasher until it’s empty enough to set out the two clean bowls and a spoon (on top of it) and it gets loaded again.

The floors are non-negotiable. They must be swept and mopped every two days…and I still wear shoes and/or socks even to get up at night to pee. The bed is in the same obsessive category. I cannot function with a messy bed, it gets made with military precision every day.

My desk, on the other hand, is a full-scale, war-zone disaster area…and Heaven help the person who moves so much as a pen.

General clutter can stay out in full view, but must be stacked neatly and without flaw. Shopping bags are perfect for storing junk, but cannot – CANNOT – sit on the floor. They are hung. Anywhere, everywhere, but they are hung.

Things We Will Never Use but Must Keep

Those things go in the garage, the spare bedroom (dubbed the eBay room), or in closets. They are usually marked for sales and get occasionally listed on eBay or some random trading site, or traded off for other things that we’ll never use.

Except for that compulsive Oscar-Fit twice a year…

Those are the days the PackRat dies.

The Day the PackRat Dies

I tell myself (or rather, Oscar) that the clutter in the corners in its neat stacks and hiding in its shopping bags can stay. That the “sale stuff” isn’t hurting anything hidden away in the various Outta Sight-Outta Mind areas…

But I’m lying.

I cope, I deal, and I ignore…about 362 days out of the year.

That handful of days happen at complete random, when Oscar becomes homicidal and slays the PackRat in the middle of the night, and I wake with a sole purpose in life, to rid the house of any extraneous item.

Junk gets purged out of all the corners, closets, and hiding spots, clutter gets dumped on the rug in the living room, and the Guru usually gets asked to leave with his own PackRat.

Everything of value over about $25 gets photographed, labeled, and listed somewhere to be sold.

Everything else disappears into black trash-bags never to be seen again. Some are bound for charity, others are bound for the dumpster. My kids look on in horror as stuffies, Happy-Meal trinkets, and clothes they never wear (but suddenly love) go poof.

If I manage to get the Guru out of the house, his things get raided for stuff he never uses and will never miss…but that is happening with less frequency, I think he’s on to me. Lately he stays to “help,” meaning he hangs around on the fringes “rescuing” things from the bags and hiding them when my back is turned.

No, I don’t throw out the Good Stuff!

Meemaw’s jewelry and silverware are forever safe. So are the kids’ baby keepsakes and all their t-shirts with interesting or memorable logos (for a quilt someday, if I ever figure out the sewing machine again…btw, anyone know what to do if it’s breaking strings and/or making loopy/BIG/ugly stitches on the bottom side?)…

The Guru’s collection of thousands of PC CD’s are safe (hey, he IS the Guru…apparently the loss of a single disc means my computer might not get fixed next time I kill it).

The photos and letters are exempt, as well as the wood carvings Pop made.

The rocks can stay.

Rings and necklaces that were gifts will forever remain in the jewelry box.

Guns are safe…but only because I might find myself divorced for selling those.

When it’s all said and done…

…the truckload (I don’t stop until the Chevy is STRUGGLING) of stuff gets cleared out of Oscar’s universe, the house looks great, I am sore and tired but elated, and you know what?

No one misses a damn thing.

My son has a radar…

There is apparently a silent alarm that goes off somewhere in his little head when the following happens:

  • Mommy sits at the computer
  • Mommy has a deadline looming in the very near future
  • Mommy thinks he is asleep and runs a bath
  • Mommy kisses daddy

This alarm sounds and immediately spurs him into action…it is suddenly time to either have a walleyed hissy fit or climb something. If the alarm sounds after bedtime, it is his cue to come running out of his room like a banshee on cocaine, careening across the hardwood driving a popcorn popper machine with an Easter bucket on his head.

This is what I deal with every minute of every day…even “at work.”

…an amazing occurrence, considering that both are hidden at least 5 feet from the floor every night as a part of the bedtime ritual. The bedtime ritual that includes 4 hugs, 3 “I lub you’s”, and 2 kisses on each cheek (ours and his).

The Deadline Radar is the worst, especially considering that my “office” is in the living room. Working from home is great in theory, and to those who argue that I “am so lucky” are right in that I don’t have to pay $45 a day for childcare. However, have you ever tried to complete a college-level essay on dental procedures with a two-year-old IN the chair behind you, drawing on your neck with a Sharpie and playing Angry Birds on your ringing cell phone?

It’s no wonder I’m crazy…

Any of you work from home? What are your coping mechanisms?

Hello, Blog!! Been a while!

Yeah, yeah…I know. I am a neglectful blogger, but life has been hectic and crazy. Want some updates?

Well, when I logged back in I found that I still have quite a few visitors (thanks y’all!!!), and some new peeps who’ve found me in search engines. I just had to click over and see some of the search terms that they’ve used to find me…

And found a GREAT addition to my Odd-and-Crazy Search Terms archives:

“Shake me like a monkey”

Yep. Someone typed THIS into their search engine and it brought them to me. I’m pretty sure this one scares me more than my Bandaid-Butt fans. At least I know which post brought those guys to me.

But when did I ever write a post about shaking monkeys??? Literally or figuratively!?

Freak.

So what else has been going on?

I coached a tee-ball team. By accident (although I had a blast with a great little group of guys and girls)…

See, I checked “yes” on my daughter’s sign-up form, stating that I would be willing to help out and volunteer. I figured I’d be asked to bring some snacks to a game or two, and maybe sign up as team mom for a few games or practices.

Ooooh no…they called me the next day to let me know I’d been “given” a team. At least the rules for tee-ball are pretty lax. My softball playing years didn’t exactly prepare me for explaining the fundamentals to a group of 4-5 year olds.

And I never got to sing and dance in the outfield when I played.

Another high-light of the last few weeks…my husband launching us into a whole new realm of Redneckery.

There was a Rattlesnake Rodeo his peace officers’ association decided to hold. They needed snakes of course. In lieu of buying snakes, they handed a catcher out to the officers in the area and told them happy hunting. (we do live in West Texas, but still…)

So the Guru comes home one day with a lidded (thank God) 5 gallon bucket, a 4 foot long catcher stick, and a shit-eating grin.

“Honey, look what I caught! There are four of ‘em in here!!”

 This began the scramble to find something of an appropriate size and secure enough to hold multiple live rattlesnakes until they could be taken to the event.

After some digging, he comes up with a white plastic barrel (with no lid), a metal-grate lawn table, my concrete stepping stones, and a handful of bungee cords.

I was concerned.

It grew as he dumped the snakes into the barrel, placed the tabletop on the top of the barrel, and weighted it down with the stepping stones.

Then he bungeed the whole thing to a tree in the front yard… ”So the dogs won’t tip it over.”

Great. I took that moment to come to the computer and put out an APB (via Facebook, of course) to anyone who had a cage of some sort that might be a little more secure than the Guru’s Bucket-O-Snakes.

My cousin’s girlfriend (Dude, MARRY this one!!) saved my sanity by donating a rabbit cage to the cause. I reinforced it with metal fabric and forced the Guru to take it (and the snakes) to our kennels…which thankfully are about a quarter mile from the house.

In the meantime, he did attempt to make it safer for trespassers by using a magic marker and marking it with “DANGER: LIVE RATTLEBUGS!”

Although, if someone HAD come up to burglarize the house, we’re probably the only ones around who had guard-snakes in the yard…

Has anyone else reached any interesting levels of Redneckery? I’d love to hear about it in the comments!

My son’s shoes are broken. There are rocks in them.

The sippy cups? Broken…the lids are off and they are empty.

His hot chocolate (“chocky”)? Broken…it is too hot.

His sister? Broken…she dared to take Puss in Boots out of the DVD player and replace it with <gasp!> Cinderella.

No, I am not staying up late smoking crack, and there is no Red Bull in my coffee.

I am referring to my son’s newest (and new favorite) word, “broken.” Anything and everything that is not in its usual state of being is now “broken.”

Pudding on a shirt, a recliner with the footrest extended, a TV that changes channels (according to DVR presets), me when I’m on the phone and ignoring him…all broken.

I actually like the concept.

My house is no longer messy or cluttered…it’s just broken!!

I’m wondering what my son is going to think in the morning when he wakes up and discovers he has Sharpie marks around the fingers of his left hand…

Yes…Sharpie. The permanent marker that I have forbidden both my children from touching because they are…well…permanent. Sort-of.

See, I was working on taking some photos of completed craft projects from my kids Krafty Kits.

Since the Climber is too little to make his projects on his own, I’ve been putting them together for him, and then letting the Diva use them as examples to make her own. The Climber “redecorates” his quite happily while she works.

Everyone wins.

This time, though, I decided to go ahead and get December’s projects ready to photograph so that my mom could use them for advertising.

I decided this while the kids were fast asleep.

Everything was going great, I was channeling my inner child while the Guru watched Storage Wars and plotted the demise of the competition at the next auction we attend…until I got to the cute little googly-eyed Rudolf in the Kit.

Rudolf with his stolen-handprint antlers.

The googly-eyed Rudolf that requires the shape of tiny hands to create his antlers…

I stared for a moment at my own hand while contemplating my free-style drawing ability. Neither possibility was going to be flattering for the foam reindeer.

In a flash of inspiration and with my semi-willing accomplice in tow, I snuck into the kids’ room armed with a piece of paper and a marker.

Tip-toing in time to the SpongeBob theme song playing softly in the background, I crept to my son’s bed and eased his little hand out from under Raffe (stuffed giraffe that MUST accompany bed and nap times).

There in the dark, with my husband holding the paper and trying to get the limp little hand to lay flat on the paper that was shaking from his almost-silent laughter, I snickered my way through a rough outline of a little hand. The whole thing was ridiculous and we kept cracking up in those stage-whispers that are always somehow deafening in a quiet room.

About the time the Climber stirred and re-claimed his hand to grab Raffe again, we couldn’t hold the laughter anymore and had to bolt.

After laughing in the hall for a few minutes, I had a thought that sent me into hysterics again. I couldn’t explain what was so funny because I couldn’t breathe!!

The only answer was to grab a flashlight and creep back into Never-land to show him what was so much funnier than our secret mission had been.

Sure enough, there wrapped around Raffe’s neck, was the tiny hand…each finger with a line of black around the edge.

I sort-of expect to wake up in the morning and discover that my son has added “what the hell???” to his growing vocabulary…

I read this…

I laughed so hard I cried…

I drug my own hubby to the desk to read what I told him was a blog from the woman who married his long-lost, separated-at-birth twin brother…

I ducked out of the way as he read, laughing in spite of himself…

Screwed Over By The Devil.

WOW…

My kids have a LOT of crap. I knew this, but it didn’t really sink in until I waded in there yesterday armed with a box marked “garage sale” and a trash bag.

I came out four hours later with 5 garage sale boxes, 4 FULL trashbags, and a box of the dishes that I’ve been searching for.

I found treasure, trash, and things that made me go “hmmm…”

Best in Treasures:

  • 6 HotWheels that we thought were gone for good
  • 2 Barbies…sans clothing
  • A Barbie leg…that did not match the above-mentioned Barbies
  • My favorite coffee mug
  • 9 socks
  • A tennis shoe, a houseshoe, and a flip flop
  • A cat (seriously…he snuck in while I was working…with the help of the Climber)
  • 2 sheets of stickers that had never been stuck on anything
  • My slate grey eyeliner
  • Lots of batteries
  • Goodnight Moon
  • 4 Littlest Pet Shop critters

Best in Trash:

  • Lots and lots of discarded papers and tissues…of course
  • 2 half-licked-clean suckers
  • What I think was once a Tootsie Roll (I hope)
  • My son’s cracker stash
  • My daughter’s rock stash
  • A bundle of dead dandelions
  • A lock of my daughter’s hair…that we thankfully had (apparently) never missed

Best of the Things that made me go Hmmm:

  • What “Flart” goo apparently does when it dries to a bedpost
  • Play-Doh rocks
  • Lots of little animals wearing clothing from the naked Barbies
  • My son’s suitcase…packed and ready to go courtesy of the Diva
  • Roughly 57 movies in the wrong cases
  • Chapstick stash IN the CD player
  • Something green and glittery in a teacup
  • Something pink and sticky in the oven of the play kitchen
  • Something fuzzy under the bed (later identified as the wayward cat)

The garage sale boxes were full of outgrown clothes and unused toys.

The biggest treasure of all…

THERE WAS CARPET UNDER ALL THAT CRAP!!!!

A rare sight in the hot, dry climate of the West Texas Panhandle today…

Rare Spotted Minion Foraging for Sugar and Caffeine

A Spotted Minion was found foraging for sugar-containing food and drink, wearing a shoe robbed from another, larger minion. Most forms of food and drink, and many kinds of clothing and accessories are commonly found missing after a sighting of a Minion of any kind, especially the younger ones.

Minions are cuddly creatures that love to be held and played with, and make great pets and family members. They are sometimes a handful, as they love to climb and dismantle things. They get along well with other creatures, often sighted snuggling with domestic cats and dogs. If you see one, a Minion can often be coaxed near with a handful of mini-marshmallows or a beverage with a straw.

A Sweet and Happy Critter

These creatures are scavengers, eating and drinking what they find. Some are picky, but they are almost always up for something sugary.

Spotted minions are extremely rare, and often mistaken for those of the more common species. This is because the spots are only evident in special circumstances…in this case, a sheet of pricing labels was left unattended and was taken by two minions, resulting in the appearance of spots.

There have also been sightings of Striped Minions, usually in concurrence to the disappearance of markers. Fancy Minions are often seen in stolen beads and tiaras, and are normally larger in size than this Spotted Minion seen here.

Other names for the Minion include, Little Sh*t, Buddy, Klepto-Kid, and Dammit Son

WOW…if any of you people that know me well happened to pop up on my doorstep right now and attempt entry into my house, you would be in for a BIG surprise…

You know I’m fairly organized, as I have OCD and I like to have room to walk around (toys aside, that is a battle Oscar cannot win). Therefore the fact that you can’t get into the front door because of the big pile of dresser drawers might come as a surprise…along with the drawerless (yeah, made that one up) naked dresser in front of the couch where the coffee table usually resides.

There is a coffee table in the center of the room with an upside down end table on top of it, accompanied by another random drawer. The North wall is lined with a baby swing, bouncy seat, and car seat that neither of my kids fit into anymore. Fifteen (yes, fifteen) wicker baskets are scattered about the floor, and the vacuum cleaner cord snakes through it all like a skinny anaconda.

At random intervals, the Princess prances through with a limp (she has stitches in her foot) wearing a neon green dress, a tiara, and purple flip-flops. The Prince tears through at equally random intervals, naked, pushing a doll stroller filled with a book, a sippy cup, and a terrified and resigned kitten.

There are no curtains on six windows of the house, and there is a pile of rugs in a corner.

The dryer is running, the dishwasher is running, and I’m pretty sure (thanks to the Prince) the bathtub is running. This very computer is playing a mix of new country and old rock, and the TV is (for once) silent. Oh yeah, the coffee pot is brewing, too.

There used to be a loveseat and a blue recliner in here, but they have given way to a giant pile of clothes bound for the local thrift store (with all the baby stuff), and an assortment of jackets, coats, and sweaters. The couch is still visible, if you can scale a blanket rack and jump. The back cushions are in the floor, though.

"The Mess"

What my normally pretty and inviting living room has been reduced to.

 

I’m pretty sure even the goldfish is peering through his glass picture window in awed terror.

Thanks Mom, for the theoretical protocol that pulling out and disassembling the entire home in the endeavor to “clean it right” is the “only” one that works! You’re right about one thing…if I ever find my living room floor again, the feeling of accomplishment will be overwhelmingly wonderful.

Or else I’ll have lost my mind by then and just be grateful for a solid surface in which to sit and rock.

Ok…my break is over, I am going to go dive back into the fray. If you don’t hear from me in a few days, send over a garbage truck and the people in the white coats with the giant butterfly nets…