Mommy’s Little Helper Monday (Earth Day Edition)

Well, crap balls! Or should I say organic biodegradable spheres of manure? I totally forgot it was Earth Day so I am missing out on a well-planned blog based on the theme. I’m going to have to wing-it all ADD style. I’d been planning on an entire post devoted to the beauty of wine and then I get this Earth Day reminder. I ain’t got no time to look for new photos and come up with an entirely new idea, so I’m just going to have to find a way to make this look “green.”

Kermit kept it green by trading in his Harley for hybrid scooter that converts pig poop into fuel.

Kermit kept it green by trading in his Harley for hybrid scooter that converts pig poop into fuel.

The first thing I wanted to share with you were the bad ass, best-thing-ever I found this weekend. I’ve been working really hard to slim down our budget (which is saving us some green- I know, too freaking early for bad puns), and I’ve done great. I haven’t bought anything I didn’t NEED for a few months now. That got blown to shit when I found these.

A mommy sippy cup! I nominate this product for a Nobel prize.

A mommy sippy cup! I nominate this product for a Nobel prize.

They are beautiful and bring a tear to the eye, but they aren’t earth friendly. They’re plastic and plastic is bad in Earth Day land. It’s good for when Mommy gets drunk and trips down the steps because it won’t break, slit open an artery and ruin the floor she just mopped for the first time in 18 months, but bad for the environment. I just watched part of a documentary called “Bag It” about all the nasty things plastic does to the environment. If you want an excuse to drink, go watch that. If you weren’t clinically depressed before, you will be.

And aside from being plastic it was made in China (I know, shocking). So not only were they made with Satan’s version of glass, it was probably made by a lady who got paid half a wonton for 12 hours of work. Holy crap, my ADD went down a depressing path. Turn back! Turn back! Find something shiny!

Fact: Nothing distracts a girl from depression like cute shoes.

Fact: Nothing distracts a girl from depression like cute shoes.

Like those? I got those for my b-day. Now back to Earth Day happiness and how to make my new sippy cup environmentally friendly. I can’t change what it was made from or where it came from but I can make sure to use its powers for good and not evil. I decided that I could use it to multitask when it isn’t full of wine. Here’s the list of possibilities:

It could hold my car keys so I’ll always know where they are.

I could eat an organic salad out of it for lunch.

I could carry it with me to drink out of while I plant a tree or assist in a roadside clean-up (being put on a prison chain gang would be the about the only way you’d catch me doing that second one).

I could take it to the beach to give drinks to sea turtles.

I could take it to drink out of while I pretend to be interested in buying a hybrid car. I could even share with the sales guy because caring for your fellow-man is an Earth Day kind of thing to do and sales guys take a lot of crap.

I can drink organic wine out of it.

When I die I can have my ashes put in it.

See, there are lots of ways to make this little guy show the world that your past doesn’t have to dictate who you become. So, don’t be a hater of the sippy cup. Let it teach us about goodness.

"Green" grapes

“Green” grapes

Now this is where I would put in the libation portion of my post. I had planned on some random stuff about wine I like, but, man, this Earth Day thing has really screwed this all up for me. I guess if you think about it, wine isn’t horrible for the earth. Grapes grow out of it. Grapes are good. The sun helps them grow so we can call grapes solar-powered, right? And grape vines only drink the amount of water they need to live. They don’t take half-hour showers or leave the water running while they’re brushing their teeth. Grapes don’t drive gas hogs or use plastic bags at the grocery store. Grape vines give shelter to little bugs and wine to us, which is like fuel!! Holy merlot!! I didn’t realize how environmentally conscious grapes are. And if I’m drinking wine that should make me the same by proxy. I feel so much better. I’m going to go pour some wine in my plastic cup and celebrate.

Happy Earth Day, folks. Go drink some wine to support it. Turn the bottle into a candle holder and the corks into…well, whatever corks are good at.

photoSee, I helped the earth today. I didn’t waste water by taking a shower or brushing my teeth before I sat down to work. I didn’t waste energy by changing out of my jammies, and I “recycled” by using my middle son’s headphones because my oldest son stole mine. Damn, I’m good.

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Confessions (of a Black Thumb)

Kevin Costnar had a voice whisper to him from the cornfield, “Build it and they will come.” If that same voice was to whisper to me there would be a couple of differences. First, it would most likely be the voice of that creepy little Malachi from Children of the Corn, and second, it would say, “Plant it and it will die.” Yep, if I plant anything other than my ass in this chair, it will die a long slow death before going up to the greenhouse in the sky (or the festering compost pit below depending on the moral character of said vegetation). While others have a green thumb, I have a black one. Now, it’s not particularly evil (like it’s cousin Toe J. Simpson–that’s a story for another blog), but it kills shit, nonetheless. It wants to be sweet to the plants: love them and squeeze them and water them and feed them….and accidentally kill them. My thumb is like Lennie from Of Mice and Men.

My thumb = death

My thumb = death

Because of this tendency to commit botany-cide, I pretty much refrain from planting things, but that doesn’t mean I don’t give it a try every once in a while. There was the one year my mother brought over her BIG, BEAUTIFUL house plants to live on my glassed-in patio. In less than a month, they withered from a green canopy fit for howler monkeys down to something wilty you’d pull out of a dish of lo-mein. But I’m not taking full responsibility for this manslaughter. Sure, I didn’t really water them outside of an occassional spilled beer, but I also think it was the withdrawal from the constant stream of Marlboro smoke they received at Mom’s. The proof was that they made a full recovery when she rescued them from their deplorable conditions at my place.

So I stayed away from plants for several years until around 2009 when I decided to plant tomatoes and peppers in pots on the patio. And they did well!! I was constantly shocked when I’d go outside and they were not only still alive, but producing little veggies (or maybe they were tumors). That went great until I woke up one morning and they had been reduced to twigs that Charlie Brown’s Christmas tree would have made fun of. On the twigs were big, fat caterpillars with horns. I deal better with animals than plants, so I decided that at least we’d get to watch them turn into the Hawk Moths they would become. They started making cocoons and then the birds found them. Talk about a massacre. You’d think that would be enough to convince me that God would just prefer if I left his leafy creations alone, but I have a short memory, so I tried again.

I went way out of my norm and tried this crazy thing called “watering.” I did that to the azalea bushes out front and then went really crazy and planted flowers. For the first time ever I had a colorful front yard. That lasted exactly one week before the mother of all hail storms came in and beat the chlorophyl shit out of the garden. The storm was so bad that it made our fence look like somebody had taken a machine gun to it. 40k in damages. 8k on just one of my cars alone. The flowers should have been the least of my worries but I was furious that my one moment of botanical glory was taken away by a freak storm.

Now it’s 2013 and that’s been more than enough time to make me forget about the two plagues already sent to warn me to cease my bad behavior towards plants. This past Saturday my ADD whispered “Let’s plant flowers” in my ear and I drug all 3 boys to Lowe’s and loaded up on petunias for the sunny spots and impatients for the shady. Things have gone alright in my opinion, but I recently found out that not everyone feels the same. One particular flower wants to tell his story by sharing his journal. At first I wanted to shut him up so I could keep up my little charade of gardener going, but I just learned another hail storm in moving in tonight, so this may be the only thing we’ll ever hear from Tommy the petunia, so here we go…

Meet Tommy the petunia and some of his roomies.

Meet Tommy the petunia and some of his roomies.

Day 1:

I’ve been moved with all of my neighbors I’ve gotten to know in the greenhouse. It was a long, bumpy ride, but I’m still stoked about seeing the world. I can’t wait for the freedom to stretch out my roots and really see what this world is all about. Til tomorrow –Tommy

Day 2:

Wow! Finally made it to this country called Lowes. It’s really crowded so I’m guessing it’s a pretty metropolitan kind of place. Not all of the locals are friendly and I don’t understand some of the languages, but its all kosher. Me and my bunk mates have settled in at this little hostel on shelf 2 of aisle 6. I at least got a shower to wash off some of the dust from travel. I can’t wait to see what the next leg of the trip will be. Laters– Tommy

Day 3:

Dude, it was a crazy freakin’ day. There was like a parade of these huge people like the ones I’d see in the greenhouse. They came in and out, taking entire trays of my friends with them. I was getting a little down, thinking about all those lucky bastards getting to head out for their next big tour. But then–THEN, it was my turn. This woman came in with 3 smaller humans. They were really loud and talked about farting a lot, but the smallest one snatched up my bunk along with my 5 roommates, and put us in a cart. There was another bumpy ride and then I was unloaded. The leader of the group they call “Mom” seems really excited, but in  a “needs some meds” kinda way.

Don't look her directly in the eyes.

Don’t look her directly in the eyes.

She at least took me and some of my mates out in the sun. It feels good to be alive and out enjoying God’s green earth . Ahh…Wait. What’s that? It’s big and shiny…

photoOh…I see. I think she’s just making a soft new pad for me to chill in. I’m totes cool with that. Ok, she’s picking me up and…Wait! Wait!! Oh, sweet Jesus, she’s turning me upside down!!! Oh, God!!! Stop the shaking! Please stop the shaking!!…Oh, holy hell!! She’s pinching my ass…I’m falling…Oh, God, I’m falling. Somebody help me. I’m naked and her fingers are in places that they shouldn’t be…Oh, hey…wait. She’s putting me in that hole she dug. Wow. This is nice and warm. I’ve got room to stretch. Not bad. I feel like a total tool for acting like a punk-ass wuss. The boys aren’t going to let me live this down. I just need to chill and… Oh, my God!! What the hell is that?!?!?

photoOh, wait. She’s just making my bed extra soft. Yeah, I know– call me “Mr. Overreaction.” I must have some sort of jet lag or something going on. Maybe somebody slipped me some bad stuff in my food while I was in Lowe’s. Never know about some of those crazy foreigners. I just need to chillax and take some deep breaths. Photosynthesis meditation, baby- Carbon dioxide in…oxygen out…All better…and hey, there. The scenery is improving…

photo…How you doin’? Nice buds. Wait! Where you going? She waits ’til I get all chill and then she leaves me. I guess that’s chicks for you. Oh, well. Time for a slumber. Laters– Tommy

Day 4:

Things are going pretty well. The sun is up and birds are chirping. I’m getting to know my neighbor, Carl. He’s as chill as they come. Nothing shakes his mellow. A fat bumble bee was swarming around him and he was all like, “Hey, brother bee. Come partake in some of my pollen goodness. Use part of me to make your sweet honey.” He’s like a purple Yoda. I think I can learn a lot from this dude. Check ya later– Tommy

Carl

Carl

Day 5:

It’s another awesome day on planet Earth. Things are going pretty good. I guess my only complaint is that I don’t get the regular showers I had in Lowes. I’m feeling a little parched but nothing to complain about. I think I’ll spend the day basking in Carl’s wisdom. Peace and love, brothers– Tommy

Day 6:

I’m feeling a little dry today. The sun here is great and all but it’s getting a little too hot to go without a cool beverage. Carl’s just taking it all in stride. I just need to suck it up like him…Oh, wait. It looks like I have a visitor. Maybe she brought some water.

photo

Oh, God!!! That so wasn’t water. Where am I? Why in the hell did I deserve that? I’m good to people. I mean, there was that one time I didn’t call that hot little begonia the day after our roll in the mulch, but she acted like she’d been in more than one greenhouse, if you get my drift. This sucks!! I have to get some water. Oh, wait!! Yes! It’s one of the two-legged people. He’ll help a dude out.

photoWhy?!?! Sweet god of geraniums, why?!? I thought humans used toilets. Why do the male ones pee on everything? That was so not cool, dude!! Go get a REAL waterhose and wash me off. In the name of Miracle Grow and all that’s holy, please get me some water.

Day 7:

Still no water. My face is feeling crispy. I keep stretching my roots as deep as they can go, but no water. I got bit by a grub today and a bird shit on my head. I’m starting to realize I’m in hell. It’s like a horror movie. Carl isn’t looking so good either. If water doesn’t come soon, I’m not sure what will happen. Pray for me– Tommy

Day 8:

We lost Carl. He’s gone on to a better place. He’s the lucky one.

RIP Carl  February 12, 2013- April 15, 2013.

RIP
Carl
February 12, 2013- April 15, 2013.

Day 9:

My prayers have been answered. There are clouds in the sky. Even these serial killing assholes who have me captured can’t beat nature. Come to papa Tommy, sweet mother’s milk. I’ll drink it in and grow strong again. Then I’ll avenge Carl’s death. Just wait, crazy garden lady. Just wait.

To be continued…

Confessions (of my inner White-trash)

I have enough embarrassing photos of my children to keep my life with boys series going for a decade, but I get bored pretty easily (You did catch that whole ADD thing about me, right?). So I’m going to mix it up and embarrass myself, too. While rummaging around on the internet for healthy recipes to cook for my family (I can hear my husband laughing all the way from his office), I came across this little thing called a Challenge Meme. Essentially it challenges a blogger or anyone with an internet account that gives them the ability to annoy others from great distances (Facebook, Twitter, and the particularly horrifying Twilight fan fiction sites–we must never forgive them for birthing 50 Shades of Grey), a prompt to write about everyday.

There are lots of them out there ranging from the mundane to the insanely specific. We’re talking everything from writing and drawing challenges, to crazy shit like organizing and green smoothie challenges, to the little bit pathetic ones like Justin Bieber and Spongebob. I’m not sure I really want to know what’s involved in a 30 day Justin Bieber challenge and I’m pretty sure that 30 days of green smoothies would also be classified as a 30 days on the toilet challenge. But back to my point, this idea appeals to me. My ADD loves it some lists. It wants to be organized and a list with specific, attainable goals, tickles the shit out of it. It gets all giddy like when it used to take tests in school. There was no way my ADD could make it through hours of mind and butt-numbing homework, but it thrived on tests. They were short and required hyperconcentration. If my ADD hadn’t rocked it out on the ACT I would have never gotten a scholarship, which means I probably would have never gone to college, which means I could have very well ended up a stay-at-home mom with a blog…Uh…hmmm….Just give me a sec to run down to the liquor cabinet and numb that pesky part of my brain that likes to do things like make realizations….

Trailer 3

…Ok, all better. Back to this challenge idea. I’ve decided to do a 30 post challenge about confessions. I’m not sure why that’s what popped up, maybe it’s the new Pope; but I think it could be fun. I can embarrass myself and my family, and you get to laugh and be thankful that I’m not responsible for your care. So let’s get down to business with my first installment.

Confessions of my Inner White-trash

I was born in Tennessee and raised in Arkansas. I’ve never lived in a trailer or a shack. We were poor but we weren’t poor white trash. I had shoes I just chose not to wear them as often as I should have, and we certainly ate beans and cornbread on occasion. People assume that all Arkansans are hillbillies and rednecks, but I’m going to give you a quick lesson on the classification system of Southern crackers (white folks, not saltines).

Country: People known as “country folks” are good people who’ve come from a long line of people who made their living off the land or doing manual labor. They may not be educated but they’re smart, often wise. They love God and their family above all else. They typically aren’t very worldly but they don’t see a need to be. They enjoy simple things but they are not above leaving cars, old washers, or even school buses out on the back of their property to rust away. My extended family would be classified as this (including the school bus).

Rednecks: These are country people who like the finer things in life, which mostly means things with big wheels that you can drive through the mud. They are louder and more brass than country folks. I even dare to say that many lack some of the manners of the country folks. They are more apt to be in your face, sometimes with a gun. What they lack in refinement they make up for with ingenuity.

Trailer Trash (AKA: poor white-trash): These folks are pretty much the dumb cousins that the country folks and rednecks couldn’t stand to be around. They don’t have the wisdom of the country folks or the drive of the rednecks. They don’t need no school or nothin’! They like their life of government cheese, brawls with gas station hookers who stole their money, and visiting the jail more than once a year. Not all people who live in trailers meet the qualifications to be trailer-trash. It takes a special brand of stupid to make this cut. (side note: there are way more trailers in Florida than Arkansas.)

Hillbillies: Take the poor white-trash, move their trailer to a mountain and replace their Pearl beer with some moonshine. Give them a possum coat for good measure.

Now, I don’t think I fit into any of these categories but you can’t grow up in this rainbow of diversity and not have it rub off on you. So, here is the proof that somewhere down deep inside there is a Country-Redneck-White-Trash hybrid that occasionally gets my ADD drunk on some canned Coors and influences its creativity. And here is the proof that will probably provoke my husband to go into hiding:

When your inner white trash gets a hold of your ADD it will tell you that a perfectly good substitution for having to drag your kids, a caravan of shit, and your bloated self down to the pool is to create your own waterpark in the back yard…

Come on down to Wild Bucket Country! Free pork rinds with every admission.

Come on down to Wild Bucket Country! Free pork rinds with every admission.

When you actually get snow in Dallas (which never freakin’ happens), your inner White-trash will help you engineer a snowsuit from hand-me-downs and recycled crap from the garage…

"Mama, I'm goin' back to the igloo-trailer for my possum blanket and a hot beer."

“Mama, I’m goin’ back to the igloo-trailer for my possum blanket and a hot beer.”

(Yes, those are latex gloves from the garage over his mittens secured with masking tape. Target bags over his double-socked feet with more tape. Ain’t no snow gonna keep my boy from havin’ fun with his cousin-brothers.)

When Christmas comes around and you have a toddler who wants to pull the Christmas tree down over and over again, your inner white-trash will help you rig that sucker up to withstand a F1 twister with nothing more than a Lego table, an empty crate, and some twine. Your children will then dress for the theme…

"Mama, can we make more of those fancy ornaments out of fishin' lures and beer cans?"

“Mama, can we make more of those fancy ornaments out of fishin’ lures and beer cans?”

Well, there you go. You can take the girl out of Arkansas but you can’t take Arkansas out of the girl. If you want to witness the depths of my inner white-trash please go buy a copy of Fifty Shades of Puddin’. Who doesn’t want their erotic love stories to take place in a trailer park? (Yes, another shameless plug so I can support myself when my husband divorces me.)

Mommy’s Little Helper Monday

Yes, it’s Monday again. I’m still struggling with that fact myself. My coffee hasn’t worked nearly fast enough and I look extra lovely today wearing a nightgown Holly Hobby would find too conservative and a robe that has an honest-to-God zipper up the front. Add in my it-was-wet-when-I-went-to-bed hair and my dark circles and I pretty much look like Medusa if she was living at an assisted living center. And because I look like this, I guarantee that our contractor will pop by to check on our bathroom situation. So, before I permanently scar the psyche of some young man, let’s get to the good stuff…

The Libation:

The Colorado Bulldog

"Seriously, you can cancel my neutering appointment because I'm pretty sure those suckers froze off an hour ago."

“Seriously, you can cancel my neutering appointment because I’m pretty sure those suckers froze off an hour ago.”

I have no idea why they call this drink a Colorado Bulldog; all I do know is that they taste a little like a chocolate shake, go down too easily, and influenced many of the stupid decisions I made in my 20’s. They are essentially a White Russian if that Russian has been Americanized in the south by becoming addicted to trailer park protein shakes, also known as Coke (or is that Mountain Dew? I get confused). Here’s what you need to make your own:

photo

You’re probably wondering about the little illustration instead of a beautifully staged photo. Honestly, it’s a lot faster for me to doodle this out than find all of the ingredients, clean a spot to take the photo, and stage it to look like something you’d see on Pinterest instead of a crime scene photo from an episode of Police Women of the Appalachians. The other thing you’re probably wondering about is who the hell would mix vodka and milk? Trust me, I thought that too. Give it a try, and all will be good.

Directions: Get out your prefered drinking recepticle wether that’s a camouflaging Starbucks cup you can take with you in public or a blinged-out pimp cup that says “Mommy’s a Crunk Be-otch” or whatever. Drop in some ice and your jigger of vodka– you know, that weird little two-sided funnel you thought was some Martha Stewart brand eggcup for quail eggs you got as a wedding gift (Seriously. Who the f%ck eats quail eggs?) . Add a jigger of Kahlua, and your jigger or two of milk (cow, soy, almond, hemp, goat, yak, whatever). Mix that up. You can even use your fancy martini shaker if you think the sound might lure Daniel Craig over. Once the White Russian part is in the glass, add a splash of Coke and your done. Yay for vodka! Now this is not calorie friendly ( I only drew the recipe with a Diet Coke because I like to look like I care), but neither are those tater-tots you just scarfed off your kids plate because you didn’t want them to go to waste.

Speaking of eating your kids wasted food…Duh–I Already Knew That Useful Tip:

We’ve all done it, and most of us have felt guilty about it. We’re moms not vacuums, but for some of us with OCD tendencies (raising my hand over here), it can be hard to see food go in the trash. I’ve caught myself more than once eating something off my child’s plate instead of letting it go where it should. If I was a person truly qualified to give advice I would be giving you a tip on how to tell yourself you’re worth more than those extra calories and all that other great bullshit, but I’m not. Instead I’m going to enable your behavior because…well, because misery loves company. So, here is my “helpful” tip. If you are facing down a Spongebob bowl half-full of Krap Kraft Mac-n-cheese and you can’t squash that overwhelming desire to eat it, sprinkle some Sriracha sauce on it. Seriously! It was pretty good, but I guess if you numb your tasetbuds first, everything goes down easier (I bet that Bizarre Foods idiot person carries ass-loads in his suitcase).

If you manage to lure Daniel Craig over with your martini shaker, let us know if he's wearing these under that suit.

If you manage to lure Daniel Craig over with your martini shaker, let us know if he’s wearing these under that suit.

Now, I’m supposed to give you something funny to keep you going on this Monday, but I feel like my funny bone is having to work hard today. Maybe all that spring cleaning yesterday broke it? I don’t know. I guess I could scour pinterest or Facebook or I could be really lazy and just post some random photo from my files. Yep, that’s the winner because I’m actually really, REALLY behind on my current novel and have to get my ass typing (my ADD just shoved an image in my brain of ass cheeks typing…Ahh, I love my ADD). So here you go, a photo I took of some fabric that I swear on a bottle of rum was being sold at JoAnn’s…

Are you beating a drum or are you just happy to see me?

Are you beating a drum or are you just happy to see me?

Yeah, I noticed that there seemed to be a theme to todays post, too. Not sure why. Anyway, here’s the “cover my ass” portion of the blog also known as credits and disclaimers: Medusa is still going strong and doesn’t need a retirement facility even if she is getting a little incontinent with age; the bulldog photo was found here; trailer parks don’t actually allow protein shakes on their grounds; Police Women of the Appalachians isn’t a real show but totally should be; Martha doesn’t sell eggcups for quail eggs (she carves them by hand and gives them as favors at her annual Spring Equinox parties); I’ve never seen a mommy hide liquor in a Starbucks cup (its hard to type that without thinking lightning is going to strike me);  Daniel Craig is probably not going to fall for the martini trick…again; and you can actually buy those undies here.

Happy Monday– Ash

Life With Boys– part deux

Maybe I should title that “Number 2”, as in the secret bathroom code developed by our ancestors before they were even walking without the aid of their knuckles. Yep, nothing that has even the slightest link to poop will escape a boy. Crap and crapping is considered highbrow art in the world of the male child. They set up miniature think-tanks under the monkey bars at school to hold summits about how many ways they can talk about it . If you want to get the attention of a boy under the age of 15 simply work in the word poop, crap, pooh, poo-poo, dookie (how they hell do you even spell that), or whatever else they call it into a conversation.

Let’s say you’re lecturing telling demanding begging them to clean their room. All they hear is blah…blah…BLAH…BLAH…sound of muffled sobs…blah…blah… sound of wine bottle being opened…blah blah. But if you slip “pile of stinky poop” in right before you get to the important stuff, you’ll have their attention.

I’m not sure why I’ve started this off with a discussion on poop. I guarantee that my ADD is involved since it saw “part deux” and chased it down a shiny bunny trail, but it could also have to do with the fact that our house that normally contains 3 functioning bathrooms is currently down to one–mine. There was apparently a leak going on under my boys’ upstairs toilet (a bathroom that’s odor reminds you of a primate house on a scorching summer day) for some time. We didn’t realize it until we found a puddle in the bathroom below it and the paint peeling in there and the living room. Anyway, the floors are torn out and that leaves 4–FOUR people with male genitalia using my bathroom. Insurance doesn’t understand that some people’s safety could greatly depend on how fast they get that check cut.

Just how upset would our HOA be if I built this in the yard?

Just how upset would our HOA be if I built this in the yard?

But enough about poop and bathrooms, let’s get to some more photographic evidence of what living with boys looks like.

When you’re a mom of boys your son will decide…

Who can resist a sparkly wedge that gives your calves some extra lift?

Who can resist a sparkly wedge that gives your calves some extra lift?

…. that your sequined flip-flops are ideal for a leisurely spin on his bike.

When you’re a mom of boys you’ll discover that a little thing like a nosebleed…

"This tastes a little salty."

“This tastes a little salty.”

…will not keep them from enjoying a fine PBJ.

When you’re a mom of boys one of them will eventually beg to make pancakes by himself, and because your drinking (3 boys, remember?), you’ll agree. If it’s your artistic child he’ll make a doughy replica of a minature weenie dog…

IMG_0499…but he’ll also make something else in the “weenie” family…

IMG_0430

He’ll then try to convince you it’s an elephant, but you will not be fooled because you’ve never seen him think an elephant was so freaking funny.

Happy Friday!!

Organization? Does that come with feta?

Greece!!

An organized life is as foreign to me as…well, a foreign country. In fact, I’m going to use a foreign country to help illustrate what I’m talking about. Let’s use Greece. Ahhh…Greece, a beautiful city full of crisp white buildings stacked against towering cliffs that overlook azure seas. All of the photos make it look so clean and pure, a place of perfection that I want to dive into.

That’s what the thought of an organized life does to me. I look at Martha Stewart magazines or wander the isles of The Container Store and I long to experience the feelings of everything being exactly where it’s supposed to be. I imagine that feeling would be close to the peaceful exhilaration I’d experience walking down the winding streets of Crete or Santorini.

Not Greece but just as foreign to me.

But I just can’t do it. My brain isn’t wired that way, and despite my best efforts, my attempts to organize fall from the sky like a led duck. I have what people label as ADD. My thoughts fire so rapidly that if I don’t grab onto them, they’re gone. So that means I flit from activity to activity without really finishing them. I may clean off my bed but then I have to get dressed for something and I try on 30 outfits. By the time I settle on something, I don’t have time to clean up and then I’m on to something else, and then another “something else”. I’m constantly running in circles.

When I do manage to hog-tie my thoughts long enough to concentrate on a task, my perfectionism attacks. I know!! I’m as shocked as you that someone as messy as me is a perfectionist, but according to a therapist, I am. If I can’t do something “perfect” I won’t do it at all. When I decide to clean off my dresser that looks like a ransacked isle at the local Goodwill, I don’t start by just clearing all the crap away. Oh, no. I start with a single drawer and it will go something like this…

Ok, I have 22 pairs of socks. I really need one of those little sock cubicle things. (Gets in car, drives 20 miles to The Container Store, wanders around for 2 hours, buys the sock cubicle, goes home, and back to drawer.) Oh, I really should put in some scented drawer liner. I think I have some from like 3 years ago! (Goes upstairs, digs through both craft cabinets and each kid’s closet until I find the roll hidden behind the boxes of baby memorabilia. Then line the drawer. Then roll each sock and puts in its new little cubby in groups of similar colors.) Wow, I still have half a drawer left to fill. Do I put my hose and Spanx in here, or my workout clothes? (Looks at clock.) Oh, crap-cicles!! I’m late picking up the kids!!

Aside from the use of “crap-cicles” instead of a creative string of sailor-worthy profanity, that is a true story. I made one drawer near perfect but I ran out of time, and pretty much willpower, to do the rest. And the worst part is that you couldn’t even tell that I spent 4-5 hours on that damn drawer. I could have just folded my clothes and closed the drawers and it would have looked a million times better. But now you understand my problem.

And now back to Greece (see the ADD at work here?). So as much as I long to experience Greece, if you took me and just dropped me off there, it would be an excursion of terror. I would be instantly lost, wandering in circles, and unable to communicate with people. I’d try very hard to act all casual about it, but inside I’d be a confused mess. “Spanakopita!! What the hell is Spanakopita??…Spanx!! What drawer should a put my Spanx in? Is there a special cubicle for Spanx?!?” See the relationship here?

And even if I get lost, I want to go to Greece and I want to have a simpler more organized life too. Oh, and don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to “cure” my ADD. It’s been a gift to me, but I want to figure out how to work with it and make my home less cluttered for me and my family. That’s what this is about, letting go of my perfectionism and just finding a way to organize my life. I’m going to have to take baby steps along the way, but I’m going to chronicle those steps here. Maybe you have some of the same problems I do. Maybe this will help you too, or maybe you have tips to help me. I want us to share. I want us to release our shame about not being “perfect” and concentrate on the important things. My sock drawer might not make it onto pinterest, but I can at least make it work for me.

“I pity the fool who try to put me in a sock drawer with sum Spanx”

It’s a stretch but I couldn’t resist a Mr. T sock monkey. Who freakin’ could? I found it here http://www.alleewillis.com