Family life, Paleo-ish eating and Coping with Chronic Illness

You Thought YOU Had Problems

I am going to start a new business. I’m going to become a professional organizer. I can tell that a lot of my friends want to know my secrets for keeping everything running smoothly and in an orderly fashion. They don’t really come out and say that, but you know how sometimes you can just tell? I’m not selfish. And that is why I want to help.

Yeah. You’re right. I’m lying. Holy crap balls, life is IN.TENSE. I sound like I’m whining. I’m not. Everything on our family’s calendar is a privilege. We are fortunate to be able to participate in all the fun things we do. I know that. That’s what I tell myself every morning when I’m hyperventilating as I walk out the door.

Our family is at the peak of our busiest time of the year. This past week we had something all seven nights of the week. I’m not great at math, but if you’re gone all day, every day, until bed time, that doesn’t give you many hours to manage the household. I know some women will sacrifice sleeping. I don’t.

I had a good friend tell me on the bleachers this week that I would feel better knowing that she forgot her son’s Doctor’s appointment. I am not proud to admit it; she did make me feel better. I’m a bad friend. She is one of those moms you are sure has never in her life forgotten to sign a permission slip or bake birthday treats. So, you see? It’s really her own fault.

Intellectually, I know that we’re going to be okay. Things don’t have to be perfect. Cleanliness and order are not as important as being there for your kids and making great memories. But, sometimes my nerves just don’t buy it. Sometimes my nerves want me to put my fist through a wall, and scream at some of those precious, lazy slobs who are living under the same roof as me…bless their slobby hearts.

I have always been interested in people. I like to observe them. I have noticed that a lot of people (women especially) just have some innate ability to keep order. I love a clean house but God totally passed over me when he was passing out the OCD genes. I could use some.

This is really clear to me now that I have a daughter who is very organized and tidy. She reminds me to zip my purse, not lose my gloves, and to put my phone where it won’t get lost. I say to her, “Yeah. Well, I’m the mom. So, how would you like a spanking?”

My friend on the bleachers made me feel so good when she told me she screwed up. I know. I’m sick. I thought I could do the same for you. I will invite you into my life. When you realize how good you are at keeping things orderly compared to me, you are going to feel so good about yourself. Happy February. You’re welcome:

My purse

my purse

I bought a Giant bag from “31”. Have you been to one of those parties? If you have not, look around. You’re the last person on Earth.

Maybe it’s a Midwest thing. They are the rage. I really like mine; mostly because it’s so big. I could fit a ham in there, if I wanted. I guess there’s a chance there’s a ham in there right now. It’s really hard to tell. Sometimes you get hungry and you’re glad you have a ham.

My boss asked me to get something out of her purse for her the other day. I think she was just trying to show off when she did that. She has a giant purse too. Except for her junk is all but alphabetized. Everything was in a logical location, and it was all easy to see. There were no dirty tissues, crumpled receipts, junk mail or hams in hers.

Olivia’s water bottle

Olivia plays basketball. She had a game this week. When I dropped her off for school that morning she realized we forgot her water bottle. She asked if we could go back and get it. I couldn’t. I had a meeting in Chicago for work. There were no minutes to spare. Thankfully, I’ve always been a quick thinker. I shoved my coffee mug in her hand. She didn’t look appreciative. I said, “Just take it. It’s fine.”

coffee mug 2

She wasn’t very happy with me the next day. She told me that at half time someone refilled all the water bottles…and her coffee mug. I’m like, “Olivia, coffee mugs are what ALL the serious basketball players use. I’m surprised your friends didn’t know that.”

Our Minivan

mini van

Yep. Real picture. I did not tamper with that scene before I took this picture; except maybe to clean it up a little. Say hello to the bane of my existence. Our van serves a dual purpose. It provides us with transportation, and also is used as a storage shed. The other day I had to transport someone I had just met. Someone one of my children is fond of, I think; someone of the opposite sex.

It was a spur of the moment thing. I thought about just making an excuse, and saying, “Oh, sure. I can give you a ride. We’re moving though, so we have a lot of stuff in the van that we have to take to the new house.” Then I tried figuring out how to put the house up for sale, and where we might move. It just started getting complicated.

I told the truth instead. I said, “Listen. You may as well know right up front that I don’t have my crap together. Let’s not pretend. I hope you like us anyway. Be careful not to sit on that dress shoe behind you.”

Our family Calendar


I took this picture this week. This is our Family calendar. It’s on our kitchen wall, at the center of our daily activity. It’s used to help us all remember what is going on and where.

Just in case you’re confused, It’s February right now. This calendar says September. That’s the last time anyone touched it, or looked at it.

Remember September? Remember that month where you are off to a good start? You’re optimistic that you can organize, file and categorize the chaos coming at you with the force of a power washer every day? I guess I gave up on September 30th.

Do you feel better? I was hoping you would. I have had lots of nice people encouraging me on this blog journey. I wanted to do something nice in return. If you have a girlfriend who thinks she could do better, you have my permission to send her this, if you think it will help.


Comments on: "You Thought YOU Had Problems" (2)

  1. just came upon this… and after the first section, I’ll admit it, I continued reading in hopes that it would make me feel better(& accomplished of course)…it actually just hit home too well! the coffee cup thing: yeah, yesterday I forgot my 5 yr old’s shoes for school. It was raining so she had on rubber boots; apparently they are only comfortable to wear all day if she decides it for herself, not if mom tells her they look cute with her frilly dress. I tried to blame her but she gently reminded me she’d put them right where I had asked her too! pff, how rude! and then she acted like I was nuts when I offered her the option of shoes I bought at a garage sale a few weeks ago that were still in my car…okay so they were 2 sizes too big but they were better than rainboots!

    oh and I’d appreciate it if you’d tell me how long laundry usually takes to get done and put away or maybe how I’m not the only one whose dustpan from sweeping can actually look full cause its been so long since I actually swept my house, ooh, I know, if you could tell me I’m not the only one who only finally empties the dishwasher when the counter is too full of dirty dishes to put anymore…that’d help me feel better about myself too;)

    ps: LOVE your blog…I’ve perused it a few times while wanting a distraction at work:) I’ll be back and I’ll try to bring friends!

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