Category Archives: For Better or Worse

#13 – He’ll Be the Death of Me

I try to do little things around the house to prepare Sparring Partner for my death. Not that I have any plans on dying in the very near future, but hey…you never know.

I’ve already made him promise that if I do die that he must get a maid. He’s not a tidy person by any stretch of the imagination. In fact, the level of dust and dirt would probably reach enough in quantity so that potatoes could be grown along the baseboards. Not long ago, we had a huge argument about one of the attachments on the vacuum and why I can’t ever seem to put it away when I’m done with it while he ALWAYS puts it away when he uses it. The attachment was found in the basement, which is where he last used it – a year ago. And more recently he was asking me where the brushless attachment for the vacuum I use upstairs was. It took some pretty harsh words to finally convince him to fuck off remember that there was no such attachment for that particular vacuum.

A maid would also insure that the kids would be able to walk out of the house with clean underwear and socks. He has no idea why on the weekends I end up dumping four baskets of clean laundry on the bedroom floor in order to get them folded, and actually has accused me of waiting WEEKS to do the wash. In one day, the following items are in the hampers: 8 socks, 3 underwear, a minimum of 5 shirts (2 for each boy since they have a penchant for “layering”), 3 pants, and the odd towel or baby blanket. In ONE day, we’ve accumulated 20 laundry items – at LEAST. Hello! We are a small family of four!

I’ve labeled the sorting hampers in the laundry room. My 7 year old son has a better grasp of sorting laundry than my husband. For the past 15 years I’ve been showing Sparring Partner how to fold the clothes that need folding; how to hang up the clothes that need hanging, and yet…on those blue moon occasions he’s folded something or hung something, I wonder if he hadn’t had a one-armed blind man come in to do it for him.

I keep the cleaning supplies in labeled bins. The brooms and dust pans hang on the wall in plain sight. Aitch’s dresser drawers are organized the same way they were when Doodicus was a baby. And yet? When I need Sparring Partner’s help in getting Aitch ready in the morning, I will hear him shout over the monitor: “Where do you keep the socks?!”

* deep sigh *

I keep the baking ingredients all together. Baking supplies like pans and racks are all in one drawer. Oven items in another. All next to or above the stove.

All this because I am preparing him for my death.

I’m starting to get a bit suspicious that he actually KNOWS all this but is trying to drive me to an early grave.

#12 – Password

While I’m fairly certain I have shaken my two shadows from that other place (which shall go unmentioned), I can’t help but feel paranoid about what-ifs. I’ve avoided any cross-references between this new home and my other as best I could, but as long as I stink, I’ll be leaving a waft of Eu de Old Blog wherever I go.

And with that being said – plus the request to dish on some of my former co-workers – I will have some pwp posts. 

I know, I know…what a pain in the ass. Maybe if I was someone who was making oodles of money off my blog that gained notoriety by being fired for even having a blog, I wouldn’t care and I could enjoy sharing Teh Crazy openly.

Email me at thismamasaid (at) gmail (dot) com or leave a comment, and I’ll put you on my list. The GOOD list, not the Shit List. That one’s pretty full already.

#6 – Suspending Reality

My son brought home a book from the school library. I’ll admit I don’t recall the title, but the gist of was about a girl on a school trip to the farm and the relaying of what she thought of it to her mother, which started with how dull it was.

Her mother then listens incredulously as her daughter tells her how there were pigs that got on the bus because they were looking for corn; and how the kids were throwing eggs at each other, but then ran out of eggs so they started throwing corn (hence the pigs on the bus). There was the boa constrictor that one of the classmates brought along on the trip, and how it snuck away to scare Mrs. Farmer and got left behind. However, the boa’s owner wasn’t the least upset since a pig remained on the bus and now that was his pet.

…and here were the thoughts going through my mind:

  • Have you ever been hit with an egg? I’ve seen what it does to car paint (it shatters it), and one of the characters takes a freshly laid egg to the face.
  • Same with corn. Corn on the cob. DRIED field corn. That’ll leave a mark. Or take your eye out. Or both!
  • A boa constrictor. Really?! Yep, and one so big in the pictures that it took four kids to carry it off the bus. Where were the parents the morning that kid got ready for school? How did he sneak that thing in his backpack? And the teacher? She didn’t notice or care that it was on the bus?? Another picture of the boa shows that he clearly had eaten something. It might have been one of the pigs that got on the bus (sidenote: who’s going to clean up that mess? Sidenote #2: there was a bus driver, why didn’t he prevent that?!).
  • The boa was last seen crawling into the clothes hanging from the clothesline which is where Mrs. Farmer made the surprising discovery and started her screaming. She didn’t scream when the kids were throwing her chickens’ eggs; she didn’t scream at the kids when they started hurtling corn; she didn’t make a whimper when the pigs crowded onto the bus. Oh, no. She finds a snake in her laundry and she loses her ever-lovin’ mind.
  • Boa Boy traded his snake for a pig and is bringing it home on the bus. I see bacon and sausages in his immediate future, as well as some time spent in his room, grounded until he turns 18.
  • And finally. . . can you say lawsuit, lawsuit, lawsuit!

I notice idiosyncratic details that make me lose focus of the bigger picture, which is that of pure entertainment. Another example: I was watching Nip/Tuck and one of the patients who was recovering from surgery used her bedpan (with urine in it) to clobber one of the doctors. Bed pan? Who the hell uses bedpans anymore? Wouldn’t she have had a catheter?

Am I crazy for noticing that shit?

I have a friend who hints for me to hit the road and see Disney. I think her advice is sound, but of course with things the way they are, I may find myself deeper embroiled in bitter stew before I can go on a quest to find my inner little girl. But methinks I better find her soon before I hear the words “curmudgeon” to describe me (to my face), and before I chase the kids off my lawn with a broom, or worse yet – before I reveal to my son that Santa and the Tooth Fairy aren’t real. For anyone who has used Santa as an threat incentive to improve behavior; or used the amount of cash the Fairy will leave behind once some pesky baby teeth are pulled as bribery motivation, you will know that such an announcement would be parental suicide.

When did I get so jaded? Is this normal aging or is being a fun hater collateral damage for someone like me who is trying to put a rough four years behind her while keeping a fingernail grip on sanity?

#4 – I need permission to clean up after you??

Last night while Sparring Partner was preparing supper on the grill, I was helping out by either keeping the kids out of his way or saving my sanity by picking up after my husband in the kitchen. “What?! It’s no big deal if a little (raw) chicken juice drips onto the floor? Why are you such a harpy? Sheesh!”

I noticed three dish towels sitting next to the stove on the counter, and since they are supposed to hang on the stove door’s handle less than an arm’s length away, I reached for one in order to put it away.

Too late I realized that something was wrapped up in it. A plate. It hit the kitchen’s ceramic floor with a horrible splintering crash. Luckily both Doodicus and Aitch were on the other side of the room, but Aitch was quick to make a bee-line to investigate. Sparring Partner scooped her up while I brought over the broom and dust pan.

I asked him why the plate was wrapped up in the towel, and he answered that it was going to be used to put the bread rolls on. Fine. OK. Stupid, but whatever. It was an accident. But before I could even finish that simple thought, Sparring Partner angrily said that before I start moving things around in the kitchen I should ask him what is up with it, as in, does it have a purpose before I go about screwing up and shattering more dishes willy-nilly.

The self-deprecating and brief moment I held was gone. Because I didn’t confirm with him the purpose of his messes, I had somehow brought this upon myself – in so many words. That it was entirely my fault. Was he seriously trying to tell me that before I can wipe off the stove of splattered grease and food, I need to make sure he’s not saving it to flavor his bacon the following morning? Or before I can throw away the half-eaten banana that was started for Aitch that morning and now sprinkled with a handful of gnats, I have to make sure he’s not saving it for the world’s smallest banana cream pie? Or in the very rare occasion he actually hand washes a pan but leaves it sitting on the counter next to the sink, I need to make sure he’s not using it as a paper weight for his paycheck? And the insanity just spirals and spirals out of control…GAH!

After several terse words that may or may not have included “you’re out of your ever-lovin mind if you think I need permission from you to clean up your mess!”, we both understand that it was an accident that could have easily been avoided. We’re still crazy about each other. Some days the “crazy” isn’t so good.

To be fair, I need to remember to tell you the story of how I went freak-city on him over a couple of empty rolls of toilet paper.

Bring out yer dead!

The last time I dressed up for Halloween, Carter was President. I shit thee not.

I think once or twice since then I might have sported a headband with kitty ears on them and may have even gone so far as to line my eyes just a ta-a-ad darker (but hey, it was the 80s-90s…who would notice??), but I was too self conscience to get into dressing all out.

This year I was inspired by a no-sew costume I saw in that evil purveyor of crafting, Martha Stewart’s Halloween magazine.

Evil. Pure evil. If I had a half dozen lackeys making sure my glue gun was not only in a place I could find AND use, not to mentioned stocked with glue sticks, I could seriously take her. Instead, you can find me covertly glueing odds and ends at the kitchen counter because it’s granite and the glue easily picks off of it. That is, when I can find the stupid glue gun and wrestle the last remaining glue stick from a cobweb in our basement that may or may not have been bedazzled.


Here’s me holding Aitch with Doodicus at my side. Sparring Partner was unable to dislodge the broom stick that was up his butt and get into the holiday and festoon himself.


And just for fun, while I was editing my photo files, I found this one. I don’t even remember taking it, but considering that Zombies are huge right now, it seems fitting to add it.




Sparring Partner and I are what some would refer to Latecomers as it applies to starting a family. He was over 35 when our oldest was born. I was over 40 with the youngest.

The situation is not all that unfamiliar to either of us since my mom was in her late 30s when she had me and Sparring Partner’s mother was 40. And while not unfamiliar, it has created a bit of fission within my husband’s family. My in-laws have great-grandchildren OLDER than Aitch, who is their youngest grandchild. Their second-to-youngest grandchild? That honor is bestowed yet again on our family as that would be Doodicus.

To put it another way, out of the 11 grandchildren, only two are under the voting age. Obviously they are our two.

Sparring Partner has a couple of siblings who seem to think that since he lives the closest to his parents that he should be at their side at a moment’s notice. They don’t understand when they come in from out of town, why we don’t want to go out to dinner every night they are here, which means getting home from work in time to put everyone back into one vehicle and getting home later that night just in time to put everyone to bed. Forget about baths or homework or laundry or cleaning up.

Just this past week Thursday we went out; Friday they all came to our house for supper; Saturday night we went out. Last night? They were going to do supper at the SIL’s home. We told them thanks, but no thanks. I’m sure that by declining the invitation, we were criticized our seeming ungratefulness.

I have to give props to Sparring Partner, who when on the receiving end of an eye-roll from one of his siblings after a similar incident, responded, “You had your turn to raise your children. It’s my turn now.” I think they forget that while he’s the youngest in the family, he most certainly isn’t their boot-scraper and going to take their shit anymore.

We both love our families, extended and otherwise, but right now our priorities lie with who we tuck into OUR beds under OUR roof. And if we feel we are being spread a bit thin in trying to make EVERY one happy, we know that while there’s other family around to take care of our parents, no one else is there except Sparring Partner and me to PARENT our children.

Set the table, please.

Well. I guess this means that as long as Aitch (My daughter’s blogname from now on. I’m sorry if you think I’m blatantly ripping off another “H”‘s nickname, but I’m not. I’ve been calling my daughter Aitch long enough now that sometimes it’s the only thing she’ll respond to.) is awake, I can’t be hiding away tap-tapping on my laptop’s keyboard.

Don’t you love how ambivalent Doodicus is to it all? “A baby crawling on the table? Where? Oh that…that goes on ALL the time around here…”

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