It's an exciting time of year. March Madness. My people are basketball people. Have I mentioned? They're making up for last year's cancelled tournament by being crazed about this year's games, and their brackets, and upsets, and underdogs, and yadda, yadda, yadda.
I like basketball too, but I prefer a team that one of my offspring plays on.
While they are obsessed about watching b-ball, I am obsessed about getting the house in order. Bad timing: No one cares about my priorities.
I emptied the mudroom today. The shoes . . . gowrsh.
A few weeks ago I gave instructions: park snow boots by basement door. I figured I'd gather them, haul them down to the storage room, and dump them in the appropriate bin. It saved me having to dig boots out of the depths of the mudroom.
There is a door from the kitchen to the mudroom that can't open or close. Too many shoes are in front of it and behind it. I assume the families I sit for, who enter and exit my house via the disaster-area mudroom, go home and bind their children's feet in hopes they never reach Shenanigan-like gargantuan sizes.
Tank wears a size 15. Coach and the other 3 boys all wear a size 13. Thankfully both girls are only a 9, like me.
Side note: Coach and I don't use the mudroom.
I walked past the boots that lined the hallway near the basement door for at least a week (I'm busy and they weren't going anywhere) before I decided to delegate the next step.
Me to Reg: Bring all of the boots that are on the basement stairs and in this hallway down to the storage room. Put them IN THE BIN FOR BOOTS. Do NOT leave them on the floor of the storage room.
The other day I found a lone snow boot of Curly's. I handed it to Tank.
Me to Tank: Go put this boot in the bin of boots in the storage room. The other boot is probably already there.
Tank a moment later: Um, yeah. The boots were just all lined up on the floor OUTSIDE the storage room. They weren't in the bin. I put them all in the bin. You're welcome. And Curly's other boot was down there.
Please note: Tank, president of the half-ass club, leaves a trail. In order to stand out and shine - well, he'll throw a sib under the proverbial slob bus happily.
I lined up the shoes this afternoon in the kitchen. When the mudroom was clean, I invited kids to put shoes they intend to wear again back under their lockers.
|Minus boots, it isn't too bad.|
Me: Lad, please come in here and put the packages of diapers back that you knocked on the floor when I told you to get your cowboy boots out of Ed's locker. (I keep diapers in Ed's locker when he's at school).
Lad did it right away. Major progress from the 'WASN'T ME' crap I got all summer (which is great if we don't focus on how he dumped the diapers on the floor in the first place. Baby steps).
While he was in the mudroom, I almost gagged.
Me: Lad, you smell. BAD. Have you showered today?
Lad: (taking a whiff of his shirt) I do? Hmm. OK.
He ran off to shower. Before he did, I handed him a bag of used Tupperware that was in his locker from his lunches: "Handle it."
I continued to scurry around putting away stuff from the mudroom. Walking through the kitchen, I stopped. The bad smell that I blamed on my oldest son was RIGHT THERE. On the counter was the bag of used Tupperware. Not handled.
I deserve a bravery award for smelling it.
When Lad got out of the shower, I let him know he didn't smell - it was his disgusting, rotting, not-rinsed food containers. This time he handled it. He also lit a candle. I was honestly relieved that he wasn't the source of the smell. If his issues are going to include poor hygiene, life is gonna get really challenging.
Last weekend, I asked Coach if he could put away the tools that littered one section of our bedroom floor. They weren't in my footpath, but STILL. The tools were there since, brace yourself, the dryer died . . . before Christmas. He used the tools again finally to re-hang the door and rebuild the destroyed door jam about a month ago. I felt like maybe it was time to put the tools AWAY.
Starting to understand what I'm up against?
And while the kids have been e-learning, I've become a barmaid. What happened to DON'T EAT IN THERE?
I hollered one night during an impromptu family meeting: If you think I'm cleaning up after you all, then you have another thing coming. You're in for a rude awakening.
They were bewildered. Not because I wanted them to clean up after themselves.
Tank, the spokesperson: WHO SAYS "YOU'RE IN FOR A RUDE AWAKENING"? WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT?
I switched to their native tongue:
IF YOU DON'T START CLEANING UP AFTER YOURSELVES, THEN YOU'RE ALL CANCELLED.
They congratulated me with whoops and laughter:
AWESOME, MOMMY! YOU NAILED IT.
They enjoyed my lingo, but missed my point.