Moving the Library

According to iBooks, I own 253 books.  That does not include the reference books, like Thesauruses, Dictionaries, parenting books, and palmistry books.  It also does not include the dozen or so of cookbooks or the text books I plan to read one day.  (Ink: In my defense, I only dropped lit crit because the original professor, who believed you can only understand it through doing it in one massive paper, grew very ill and had to drop teaching, only to be replaced by a pompous ass, but I swear I’ll read the book.)  Nor does it include several titles that the system says does not exist. (Honestly does any one not read graphic novels!) This does not include the fifty or so books that belong to my husband, who will NOT reread his texts books.  It does not include the large amount of children’s books that I haven’t gotten around to counting yet. 

 

But this large library, and counting, does make it difficult to move, especially when the owner realizes she might not need every title in the next year.  So the night after The Decision, I began to fill small boxes with as many books as I could back.  As I packed the books, I typed out the title of each book, making a list to tape to the top of the box.  And the system worked well until I ran out of boxes, and you just wouldn’t believe how hard it is to dumpster dive with two little ones.  They tend to want to bring home unsavory objects or cut themselves on syringes.  (Kidding.  Kidding.  You throw them in to fetch.)

 

Without boxes, I began to worry about the horrible mess of letting someone just heap books into boxes and not being able to find my very favorites when I needed them.  I did what any good wife would do; I nagged my husband.  During the times he didn’t tune me out, he suggested I get rid of some books.  I am, thank you very much, and I do, but I keep everything I will read again, and I do.  Then he would rant about how I had too many, and I would remind him why I have so many.  Soon I wished he had ignored me like usual.

 

There is a reason for the large library other than my intense love for the written word.  Years ago when my husband and I were just shacking up, we combined our moneys early because we were engaged.  As the honeymoon was over, my husband would leave to hang out with his buddies, which wasn’t a big deal, except I was young, bored, and had few friends that stayed in the area after they graduated.  After several stupid arguments, I came up with a brilliant plan.  Believing that a lot of my grief was because I was a saver and he was a spender, I decided that every time he went out drinking, I would go to the bookstore.  At first, he was against the plan, saying “You’re never going to read those books again; it’s a waste of money.”  “Well, you’re never going to drink those beers again; at least I have something to show for spending the money.”  Then I went to the bookstore.

 

In the end, I had to give up writing all the titles on the boxes and move on to just writing the type of books, like religious or parenting.  I had one box marked with my favorites.  Written on top of the box was “Favorite books; lose this box and I own your soul.”  They were in the office waiting for me when I arrived and were the first ones on the book shelves.  Of course, there’s a huge possibility that I’m going to have to move the bookcase.  Damn.

 

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236 Things . . .

No, just kidding.  Why would I torture you?  So I’ve always wanted to do one of those one hundred things list, and I didn’t do one when I did my hundredth post.  But it looks fun.  And it’s easier than phoning it in because I really need to call a bunch of places, and I have to cut out hearts for Valentine projects, and I have to call my parents because I didn’t yesterday and they may assume the worse.  Ok, my mom would assume the worse, and my dad will say I was busy.  Parents.  So here it goes.

 

  1. I lettered nine times in high school.
  2. Three times in swimming.
  3. Three times in drama.
  4. Three times in academics.
  5. My husband thinks that was too easy.
  6. He was a football player in high school.
  7. One year, JV
  8. I think he’s jealous.
  9. Yes, I do have a letterman jacket.
  10. I wore it with pride.
  11. Yes, I can swim circles around my husband.
  12. I was a breaststroker.
  13. I am impressed with Michael Phelps.
  14. Or any one who can do the butterfly well.
  15. I hate the butterfly stroke.
  16. I feel like I’m going to drown.
  17. I was a drama nerd.
  18. I owned the shop.
  19. I was a tyrant.
  20. I was nicknamed “tyrant” in college.
  21. In a creative writing class.
  22. Yes, it’s a funny story.
  23. Yes, maybe I will post that one day.
  24. I’m also addicted to sugar.
  25. In college, I did sugar shots.
  26. Yes, I realize that was unhealthy and crazy.
  27. I was straight edge.
  28. Well, except the sex thing.
  29. Now we know my mom will read this.
  30. She prefers to remain in the dark.
  31. I promise you I’ve had fewer partners than my brother, Mom.
  32. That just disturbed her.
  33. That’ll teach her for reading my blog.
  34. Or any one else.
  35. I had a kiddie pool in my dorm room.
  36. With water.
  37. I wanted it to break.
  38. So that they would have to publish “no kiddie pools” in the dorm rules.
  39. And freshmen would be like “Who the hell would do that?”
  40. I seek shallow immortality.
  41. I hung a dog collar with a bell on the statue of the school mascot.
  42. It was a panther.
  43. I instructed all freshmen to call it the Kitty.
  44. Hey, it’s better than the Pussy.
  45. Yes, my best friend and I debated that for hours.
  46. I stole signs with my best friend.
  47. Including the Republican Headquarters 3 by 6 Bush Cheney 2000 sign.
  48. We didn’t own a car.
  49. We had to run it the several blocks back to our dorm room.
  50. We didn’t get caught.
  51. We did get caught dying the fountain with red Kool-Aid
  52. And put on probation for the semester.
  53. We were both honor students.
  54. And active in our separate church organizations.
  55. They didn’t catch us the other times we messed with the fountain.
  56. Or when we made all the exit signs of the parking structure blink.
  57. Didn’t I mention I was straight-edge without a car in college?
  58. Ok, this is harder than I thought.
  59. I was named after a heroine in a romance novel my mom was reading when she was pregnant.
  60. She doesn’t remember the name of the book.
  61. The rest of my family was convinced I would be a boy.
  62. I’m descended from a long line of eldest boys.
  63. My mom was sure I was a girl.
  64. She refused to pick out a boy name.
  65. My dad insists he would have named me Ebenezer.
  66. I’m glad I’m a girl.
  67. I was a girly girl.
  68. Until second grade.
  69. I decided I wanted to play softball.
  70. My parents couldn’t believe it.
  71. It was downhill from there.
  72. I’ve played basketball and volleyball too.
  73. I’m really not that great of an athlete.
  74. I’m a daydreamer.
  75. I “wrote” my first story at 4.
  76. It was twenty pages of scribbles with the occasional picture.
  77. I had an imaginary best friend.
  78. I had her longer than is healthy.
  79. I had a whole imaginary world.
  80. Have you ever scene Heavenly Creatures?
  81. I wasn’t that crazy.
  82. Well, I did think I was an anime cartoon for a summer.
  83. In high school.
  84. Yes, I have been to a shrink.
  85. Why do you ask?
  86. Seriously, I was suicidal my senior year in high school.
  87. I got counseling.
  88. What helped the most was having my schedule shaken for two weeks.
  89. I don’t know why it worked.
  90. My mom refuses to acknowledge that I was suicidal.
  91. I went to a counselor in college too.
  92. That helped a lot.
  93. Let’s not end this on a downer.
  94. I have a library of over two hundred books and growing.
  95. I have no nicknames that I like.
  96. I don’t have any tattoos yet.
  97. I’m planning one after my last kid.
  98. I should have pierced my belly button before kids.
  99. I always wanted to dye my hair bright blue.
  100. I plan to do that when I turn 65.

An Amendment

(Faemom peeks around the door, takes a deep breath, and runs to the key board to begin typing.)

 

Ok, I have to do this post seriously and this is like my thirtieth try.  Do you remember yesterday’s post, Hey is that a soap box?: Sugar Babies and Daddies?  Well, it turns out my husband read it too (and apparently he’s been reading my posts this week).  He read yesterday’s post and took away the valuable lesson that his wife is willing to divorce him at the drop of a hat. ————————-  (See THAT!  That was an edited joke.  *sigh* This is so hard.  Comedy is in my blood.  Ok, deep breath.)

 

Well, I’m not.  ———————– *take a deep breath*  I pointed out that if he decided he wanted  ————- a mistress that he was welcome to her as soon as we signed the papers, and damn straight, he was going to pay through the nose for the privilege. 

 

My husband would like to reassure my readers that he has no interest in finding some one else because ————— – he loves me.  (anditstooexpensive)  He loves the boys.  He loves our family.  He loves our home.  ———————–  He would never endanger that for some gold digger.  I believe him.  I also mentioned that he could always go on the blog and defend himself, like ck’s husband.  But he just threatened starting his own blog, and the scary part is he does internet marketing.

 

Ok.  Now I have to write something funny and email the full transcript to my best friend because I need to share with SOMEONE my comedic genius.

 

 

 

Hey is that a soap box?: Sugar Babies and Daddies

Are you kidding me?

 

Did any one watch Good Morning America and the sugar daddies?  I wanted to write on their board, but I had just too much to say and I get a little PG-13 when I note the difference between sex and love making.

 

First off, we women need to make a pact.  If he’s married, we’re not interested.  Women are too competitive with each other, too leery of each other, to worry about some chick is going to take our man, even if we don’t want him.  Now if my husband found a cute little thing that makes him happy.  Fine.  Give me the divorce, half your stuff, and the kids and go have a nice life.  Spend as much money on her as you want, but don’t you dare think you can get away spending the family money to buy access to some nineteen-year-old’s twin bed.

 

Second, let’s be honest, little sugar babies.  You’re whores.  You are.  If you want a guy “to take care of you” and you fuck him (yes, fuck because it ain’t love making) to thank him or because you feel obligated, then you are a prostitute.  Now don’t feel too bad.  I know lots of girls who felt obligated to fuck a guy because he bought them a nice dinner or gave them something.  Granted, I was taught just to pay for the next meal, but I can see where you might get confused.  The difference between sugar babies and the ordinary girl is the ordinary girl isn’t looking for a guy “to take care of her.”  And if this is the road you girls choose, diamonds aren’t your best friends.  They don’t resell as well as you think.  Take a cue from your foremothers; the best courtesans received property and houses deeded to them.

Third, any woman, who had a good dad, would never ever call a guy a “Daddy” or a “Sugar Daddy.”  It turns my stomach just to think of it as I remember all the times I called my Dad, Daddy before I was cool enough and old enough to shorten it.  Once my husband joked about it after I had left my job to raise Tornado E.  The moment the word “daddy” left his mouth, his face contorted, and he said that it was a poor joke and one never to be mentioned again.  I looked over at the baby who would one day call my husband Daddy and quickly agreed with him.

 

Fourth, you girls who fuck as a thank you, you sugar babies, you all are making the rest of us look bad.  Most of us can’t be bought, not for a lobster dinner, not for a diamond ring, not for a vacation to the Bahamas.  But this will perpetuate the myth that all a girl wants is a guy’s wallet, and really, some guys aren’t even worth that.

 

And I promise I will make sure my boys aren’t the fools, who pay for love, that they aren’t the idiots who believe they can have it both ways, that aren’t the jerks who take advantage of the situation because that’s one of the many jobs of a mom, to raise the good guys.

An apology

I wish I could write the way Bad Mommy Moments can about bad days.  A day that includes every button pushed and every nerve gotten too.  A day which has painted carpets, chip crumbs, spilled milk, and hour old chili left in a bowl to dry and rot.  A day where you know part of it is you and not them.  A day when you dream about the days before babies and diapers, before husbands and compromise, before responsibility and housework.  A day making you forget to laugh at a dance, to be excited over pee, to clap at drum solos, to gush about how smart, how cute, how wonderful the little ones are.  A day when you can’t get online to even write about it. 

Here’s to tomorrow.

Breaking a Promise On The Hell With All That

Ok.  Ok.  (I’m not sure if Tornado E got that from me; or I from him.)  I’m in the middle of reading The Hell with All That: Loving and Loathing Our Inner Housewives by Caitlin Flanagan.  I have realized I will probably have to hunt down and read most of the books that she quotes from, which might not be too bad, due to some sound interesting.  I promised you all that I would write when I’m done, but I HAVE to get this off my chest.  Really, I might be able to raise a flag and get some support here.

 

I just finish reading “The Wifely Duty,” this is the point where I actually flip the bird at the book.  I was with Flanagan during the preface as she mourns the death of her mother, who will not be immortalized in the way her writer of a father will be with an archive in a college somewhere.  I understood the heartache and the fear of not being remembered, but I believe the lessons of motherhood and fatherhood are passed down through the heart and memories.  (I follow my great-grandmother’s advice, though I never met her, because her daughter and granddaughters followed and taught it.)  In “The Virgin Bride,” I agreed with Flanagan that the wedding industry is CRAZY, and all you have to do is watch one episode of Bridezilla to know that.  But I think this phenomom is due to sauve marketing and advertising of the bridal industry feeding off of the greed and selfishness in modern American culture versus that feminism fatally wounded the white wedding as it was known.  (More on these subjects later)  But to say that it is MY duty, and my duty alone, to keep the passion alive in my marriage, is enough for me to want to burn the book and be thankful that I bought it second hand so that there is no record of me reading it.  Wait, I guess I screwed that up when I decided to write about the book on this blog.

 

Like many young wives and mothers, I work my ass off, just like many young husbands and fathers work their asses off.  I have even actually had this discussion with a marriage counselor who said that many couples in their twenties and early thirties have a diminished sex life.  The counselor maintained this was due to the hard work and stress both partners were dealing with.  Those years are crucial to people who are building their careers, and these are also the years that there are small children in the house, who are taking up a lot of time and energy.  Once the working partner(s) make some head way in their career and the children start doing things for themselves, the couple reinitiates their sex life.

 

To say that it is the wife’s duty to make the husband satisfied is insulting.  It takes two.  Without going too much into my own marriage (just in case my husband does read it, because you know he will now that I wrote about him), let’s just say he wants it on the days that there was no sleep the night before, teething, fighting, pressing buttons, peeing, vomiting, and of course chores.  It never fails that the day he comes home from a stressful day to fall asleep on the couch to the noise of Finding Nemo and couch sliding is the day I’ve been wistfully fantasizing about when the boys go to bed and it’s the two of us.  If I remember my human biology right or even the sex course, I believe it takes two people.  I have a hard time believing that all those sexless marriages are due to a working mother’s resistance to her husband not cleaning up after the kids, which is just as comical as Greek actors running around the stage with paper maché penises agreeing to peace.  Hell, if that’s all it took to get world peace, much less a husband to remember that you have to wash children’s hands and faces after ice cream, women would be refraining from sex all the time.  The fact is that is doesn’t work, and in the end, women just have too much to do than to add wear sex lingerie as you cook dinner so you can give your husband a BJ the moment you finished putting the children to bed.

 

Really, who wants chore sex?

 

The fact of the matter is that if the husband and wife help each other out, they will be more willing to jump enthusiastically in bed because they will have the energy.  While my husband wistfully remembers the time before the boys, he has to think even further back to a time before he was building a company from the ground up.  And I will look forward to the time I can drop the boys off at my mom’s.

Housewife! Kill me!

I’m sorry; I was just planning on getting out of the blogging world and calling my parents when I happened on a couple of posts that made me go WHAT!  Now I tend not to argue with people on their own blog; it is their own opinion.  Who am I to say they’re crazy?  Then we come to Faemom’s House of Insanity, and I have complete editorial power.  (Though I don’t mind if you call me crazy; I believe I’m one foot there with the other on a banana peel.)   But I just read some one referring herself to June Clever because she had cookies and milk ready for her kids, which is awesome, but they were from refrigerated dough.  And another blogger was extolling the wonderfulness of the book The Hell With ALL That: Loving and Loathing Your Inner Housewife by Caitlin Flanagan.

 

Ok, first off, you’re not June Clever for baking refrigerated cookie dough.  You just aren’t.  You can use it to make people believe you are, especially guests, but don’t for a minute believe it.  I have bought the refrigerated cookie dough when I’m jonesing for chocolate chip cookies and only need a dozen to get through.  I’m freaked out because for a wholesome (yes, I actually used the adjective “wholesome”) activity the other night, the boys and I made cookies from scratch.  Add that to the “bone” necklaces I’m making them and some friends for Halloween and that I’m making costumes, I am seriously stepping towards Cleverism.  I prefer to be more like Harriet Nelson from Ozzie and Harriet; she had spunk. But I digress, I made cookies from scratch with my boys.  Mainly because I didn’t want to turn on the TV and my mom’s copy of Martha had an awesome recipe for cowboy cookies.  And they are heavenly.  Trust me, the irony of baking cookies from a Martha Stewart magazine is not lost on me.

 

Next.  To Hell With All That is a very bi-polar book, and I planned on making a better post on it because it needs to be written.  I haven’t read the book in six months, so I have to reread it to give you all a real gist of the matter.  But let me just say while I was nodding in agreement, I started getting angry with the book.  Apparently the author puts the everyday housewife crap on a pedestal.  I mean like taking out the garbage and vacuuming and taking care of sick kids.  Basically all the crap we hate to do, and usually the stuff our husbands take for granted (but I bet some of you have really sweet husbands that think you’re totally a goddess for doing it, that’s just not all of us).  Well, it turns out the writer had (and probably still has) a maid and used to have a nanny until her kids went to school.  Are you F-ING kidding me?  You’re going to tell me to embrace my inner housewife when you have a maid and a nanny?  You had some one else to clean up vomit and wax your floors.  And I shudder at the term housewife, and I’ll explain in the latter post why she loves it.

 

Ok, I promised I wouldn’t get in to it until I reread the book, but it is obvious that I need to.  So after I finish the one I’m working on, which may take a while because it’s around a thousand pages, give or take a hundred (don’t worry, amazing writer, page turner and all), I’ll reread To Hell with All That and give a full report.  I promise I’ll even admit I’m wrong if I like it the second time around.  And I have only admitted that twice in my marriage.

Men’s chores: A Conversation

I bet you think it will be between my husband and I, and you would be wrong.  During my daily conversation with my mom, I mentioned how I asked my husband to fill up my SUV that he was borrowing.  Amazingly enough he didn’t forget, and I was very glad.  (Which in a way is kind of pathetic that I get excited that my husband does something I asked)  Any ways, the conversation:

Me: . . . So he actually filled the tank.

Mom: You know, Pauline’s (a friend of my mom’s) husband always fills up her tank. 

Me: I know, Mom.  (Can we feel a lecture coming on?)

Mom: And your dad fills up the Mustang about 95% of the time.

(And here I thought he did that just to get away and be on his own for a little bit.  My dad’s a lone wolf.)

Me: I know, Mom.  It’s just I feel that who ever is driving the car, when it hits an eighth of a tank, can go fill it up or at least replace the gas they use.  My problem is he has left the car on empty when I’ve had the kids.  So it’s nice that he filled up the tank.

Mom: Well, we just think it’s a husband’s chore.  (silence)  What are you thinking?  (Is it that obvious?)

Me: I was thinking that you raised me to believe that there were no men’s chores or women’s chores.  They were just chores that needed to be done.  If the dishes needed to be done, then someone would do it.  If the garbage needs to be taken out, someone will have to do it.  You taught me to do “guy” chores.

Mom: (pause) I was a good mother, wasn’t I?

Me: Yes.

Laundry day

What an awesome title right? 

So laundry is the complete divide that separates the genders in my household.  Laundry day is fraught with political and sexual tension, and none of it is the good kind, as I try not to smother any one with a pillow.  (anyone = husband)  As I live in Southern California, I have to divide my laundry up to do at night so that I don’t send my electric bill sky rocketing and spend a small nation’s budget.  Friday night is the grownup laundry night.  And the same argument that has been going on for years will pick up again.  At least, we’re getting better at making fun of each other.

It started when I moved in with my husband.  (Bad Catholic, shacking up before marriage.  Engagements can fail!)  I had noticed that he only did laundry when he HAD no more clothes, and since his best girl friend owed him a large favor, she had been doing his laundry for a year.  That deal had expired a month or so before I moved in.  Before that, it turns out, his ex-girlfriend was doing his laundry.  Honestly?  (Note: I can’t complain of the sexism because in college I convinced guys to iron for me because I didn’t know how.)  It turns out my husband HATES doing laundry.  I can understand that.  I loath cleaning the floor.  But because we chose to be adults, we have to suck it up.

After a week or so of living with piles of clothes everywhere, everywhere, I said enough.  Which lead us into a huge fight, he then left in an angry huff.  Awesome.  So I was pissed, but I wasn’t going to live like this.  I piled all his clothes which turned into a small hill about five feet tall.  And I did his laundry.  I was oh-so careful.  I actually read the labels.  I used cold, hot, warm.  I separated into actual piles.  Due to my then-single husband asking a friend who was a stay-at-home mom, my husband did own a top of the line washing machine and dryer.  (Note: If by some horrible, twisted chance my marriage does fail, I plan to take them with me and the testicle I won from my husband in a bet.)  It took me three days to do it all and a  crazy high dry cleaning bill.  The last night as I gently folded the gentle cycle load, my husband came by and looked at the shirt I was folding, then preceded to lose his mind.  Apparently it was a hundred dollar shirt that he preferred to by dry cleaned, not washed, even though the tag said gentle wash.  I was still in shock that some one would spend a hundred bucks on a shirt.  I was just out of college where I was poor and starving and had 20 bucks to spend a week after bills and such.  After our tempers cooled, I labeled each of the three laundry hampers (yes, he actually owned three laundry hampers), laundry, dry-cleaning, and gentle.  I made up the new rule whatever is in those baskets will be treated as such and it won’t be my fault.  Yep, we have laundry rules as well as penis rules.

That was the first rule I installed in the household.  The next rules surprisingly were also about laundry.  It seems that my husband was led to believe that laundry included picking up all the dirty clothes, wash them, dry them, fold them, and put them away.  In his understanding of laundry, these tasks are ALL done by the person who does the laundry, the wife.  And that was the beginning of the trouble because I was raised by feminists.  (My dad actually does the laundry . . . and the dishes . . . and the ironing.)  OK, I get that I can do the washing, drying, and folding.  Oh, and in the beginning, I did laundry; while, he did the floors.  (That deal is looong gone now.)  But I am not his servant to pick up after him and put away things after him.  Still do this day we don’t see eye to eye on this.

So laundry rules as follows:

  1. If it isn’t in the hamper, it’s not getting washed.
  2. It is the owner’s responsibility to put the clothing in the right hamper.
  3. It is the owner’s responsibility to put the folded clothes away.
  4. The husband takes in the dry cleaning because he doesn’t have two toddlers to help across the street and out of danger as he carries a hamper of dry cleaning to the dry cleaners.

Things did become complicated when Evan was born.  Before he was born, I could go on strike.  So you had your buddies over for poker and didn’t clean up before or after, fine, the beer bottles will stay there.  Oh, you want to invite your best friend and his family over for dinner but the house is a mess.  Guess, we’ll clean together.  What?  You don’t have any clean underwear left?  I guess you could always pick a dirty pair of the floor, but forget about any bedroom play tonight.  Thst’s just gross.

Then Evan was born, and we couldn’t live in squalor.  Besides it turned out I liked living in a clean house, and that I enjoyed organized mess where I knew what paper was where in a stack.  So after a month or so picking up after my husband, I was ready to kill him (and let’s not forget I was the only one getting up with the baby).  So I bought a plastic basket, put his name in large letters on it, and left it on the hearth.  When I find something of his in the common areas, I throw it into his basket.  If the basket gets overflowing by two feet and we have company, I dump it on his side of the bed.  I just ignore the bedroom, making sure I have a clear path to the bathroom and a clean space for the boys to play as I get ready for the day.

So tonight I’ll do laundry.  As I try not to be a complete bitch, I’ll warn my husband and gather the clothes next to the laundry hamper, believing he just might have thrown them and missed.  Meanwhile, I plan on teaching Evan how to put his clothes and toys away.  Damn if I’ll let this habit be multi-generational.