January 2, 2023

On the 18th of December, my true loves did these things . . .

The following took place on Sunday, Dec. 18th. The day after I tested positive for covid. Not surprisingly, I measured everything that happened prior to Christmas in relation to that positive test.

I came across this recently. It's a poem Ed wrote about me when he was about 10. I love this and I meant to post it on my happy birthday to me post. Not sure that I ever jumped across a lake, but otherwise he nailed it. 

Tank set up the garland that I ordered from Home Depot. It was sitting in a giant box on the island while I was quarantined. When he stood outside my bedroom door and asked me what he could do, I told him to set up the garland on the mantle. "It's in a box on the island." 

Instead of setting it up, he went to his room and did nothing. Eventually Coach asked me if I could give Tank a job. I learned that he hadn't done the garland, so I called from my sick bed, "TANK, GARLAND!"

He wanted to be done quickly, so instead of listening he asked me where the box was. 

Let's pretend this faceless photo isn't  creepy.
Note the garland in the background
 on the mantle. Also note, I bought a
 new dress half price a few weeks before
 Christmas and I love it. This photo was taken
 before I had a chance to put my cute black
 boots on. A few guys got a vest for Christmas, so
 they all wore vests for a silly photo.
Coach borrowed one of Lad's
 vests, and didn't take it off before our pic. 


Then he asked which mantle. 


This exchange went on longer than I care to admit and ended with me shouting at him while he said things like I'M JUST ASKING - but he was asking the exact things I'd just said. He was too busy trying to race off to do the thing half-ass to tune in. 

Good thing having sudden high blood pressure isn't problematic for a covid patient.  

Coach said Tank initially put the rectangular shaped garland on the mantle and walked away, thinking that was it. The folded up piece required some unfolding in order to stretch it across the mantle. Duh. 

Meanwhile, Mini and Curly went to the mall. They returned things for me and picked up a few gifts that I ordered for in-store pick up. 

Ed made a new garlic chicken, parmesan potatoes recipe for me as I was contemplating making it for Coach's family's Friday party, but I wanted to do a dry run. 

While double masked, I went downstairs with all of my dirty dishes Sunday evening. I was immediately annoyed - not by the mess, because standard. The recessed lights in the family room's vaulted ceiling were weird, like bright white. Like give-me-a-headache colored.

The girls and I did Christmas
 cookies on the 22nd.


Reg:  OH, YEAH, DAD CHANGED OUT ALL OF THE LIGHTBULBS IN HERE BECAUSE ONE WASN'T WORKING. (this would require a ladder and a trip to the hardware store because we don't have spares)


I'd been upstairs for like 36 hours.

Coach had to run to his work to do some paperwork and wasn't home. I went to hide in the study to do some deep breathing inside my masks, away from my people. 

It dawned on me. There's a remote for the recessed lights that we never use. Tank must've bumped it on the mantle when he was racing through his garland setup chore. Reg acted like he'd seen Coach change out the lightbulbs, when in fact - he knew nothing. He switched to fake-news mode because . . . 

Her mouth is a little misshapen -
maybe she was using a
Voice to get her people to do stuff.

A) he wanted to set me off, 

B) he wanted to feel like he knew some important information, 

C) he dreamt that Dad changed the lightbulbs and he could no longer decide between reality and his dream, or 

D) the weird light vibe threw him off so much that he was confused.

A bit later, Coach called me out of hiding because he'd found the light remote. He wanted me to vote on which color the family room lights were supposed to be.

If this proves nothing else, it should demonstrate that THEY CAN DO NOTHING WITHOUT ME. 

I stood across the room and told him which light was our 'normal'. 

While the lights flashed through a weird yellow, to the institutional bright white, to the normal, Mini was explaining the awful time she'd had at the mall. The store never texted her to say that her package was wrapped, so she stood there waiting at the gift wrap counter forEVER. I would've asked if my package was ready after too much time had passed, but there's a learning curve here when people try to be me. She's a young me-in-training. There are lessons to be learned, people. 

Meanwhile, Reg walked over to the kitchen table, picked up a brand new basketball, and gasped:  OH. HEY, WHO'S IS THIS?

The girls had picked up his new basketball from Dick's sporting goods and left it on the kitchen table, because doing chores for me apparently depletes brain cells. 

Reg's evolution b-ball was stolen at LA Fitness in the fall. It's a $79 ball. He's been using Tank's old one. Reg isn't one to ask for stuff, except for new b-ball shoes and then he wants ALL OF THE SHOES. I just realized that day that a new ball would make the perfect gift.  Surprise. Or in this case, surprise ruined.  

I needed to remove myself from the kitchen, double masked and all, because who knows if the steam pouring out of my ears might contaminate someone with covid.  I was so annoyed. My great idea BLOWN. *sigh*

I blame covid for my inability to be fast enough on my feet to come up with a good cover story for the suddenly appearing b-ball on the table. Instead of creating some fib that he would never believe about why I'd spend a crazy amount on a ball for a godson, I grabbed the ball and pounded away while hollering GIRLS, WHAT IS YOUR PROBLEM? WHY WOULD YOU LEAVE HIS GIFT ON THE KITCHEN TABLE? 

There are no really good answers here. Looking back, I have no idea how we made it to Christmas morning without me losing my mind. Truth be told, Santa didn't arrive until late morning on Christmas day and the late-tobe-placed-under-the-tree gifts weren't opened until noon. But damn if we didn't host an amazing party on Dec. 25th for my side of the family. 

There's more Christmas bits to share, but the goings-on on Dec. 18th are quite telling, me thinks - so I thought I'd start there. Anyone else ruin a surprise or avoid a chore or have someone fail at a delegated task or have ALL of their lightbulbs changed out (or not) or make too many desserts to count? 

Oh, and Happy New Year! Did anyone else fall asleep on the couch by 11 pm?


Debbie said...

Happy New Year, may it bring you joy and peace, and belatedly happy birthday! Love your stories, thank you for keeping me company through many soft play centre sessions!

As I fell asleep on NYE I could hear distant thud of fireworks down the hill in the town, does that count??

Nicole said...

OMG Ernie, you can never get sick again, because the world disintegrates, apparently. Ahhhhh! People! The thing with Tank got MY blood pressure up!
Glad you're feeling better! That dress is super cute. I would have loved to see the boots as well!
I hope you're all recovered now! Happy New Year!

Nance said...

Happy New Year!

I'm glad you're feeling better and that the Holidays are behind you. (Except for the Undecorating and Putting Away part, of course.) You made it! Hooray!

Ernie said...

Debbie - Thank you for the good wishes. I'm happy to be entertaining you through these play sessions.

I heard fireworks too. I've never been a huge fan of NYE and I prefer a good night sleep to feeling tired the next day. Happy New Year and thanks for commenting and letting me know you're here.

Ernie said...

Nicole - I agree - life is more orderly and slightly more tidy when I am healthy. Yes, the Tank situation is mind blowing. He is not alone in that my children prefer to disappear and hide in various corners of the house when it is time to clean up. Our of sight out of mind. So frustrating.

I will look for another photo with the boots and a better photo of the dress. It has some stripes that give the dress the right amount of pizazz. I stalked that dress until I felt I could justify the price. I imagine I'll be wearing it for years to come.

Happy New Year.

Ernie said...

Nance - Thank you. I was glad that my cards were mailed and most of the gifts were bought. Still, it was not the greatest time to be sick. I recovered quickly and was glad to escape the four walls of my room.

I am hosting both varsity teams for a pasta party on Thursday - then I am hoping to undecorate on Friday. Not my favorite task, but I will make Mini help me.

Suzanne said...

Oh my goodness, Ernie!!! Why is it so hard to follow simple directions? And USE A BRAIN THAT IS IN ONE'S HEAD??? The basketball thing would have sent me right over the edge. So glad you are better because things fall apart without you!

Busy Bee Suz said...

I'm totally annoyed at Tank right blood pressure went up reading about him not paying attention about the garland situation.
Your dress is so cute, and the garland looks good from what I can see. Oh, wait, what is that behind your marked-off faces? 😜

I've never heard of recessed lights with a remote and color choices. Are you hosting disco parties after hours over there?

I don't know how those kids will ever survive outside of your home. I mean, I know they will, but goodness, you are The Ringleadder of the Shenanigan Circus.
I hope you are feeling better by now.
I was in bed by 10:30 on NYE.

Ernie said...

Suzanne - It really was mind blowing. These people are not four-year-olds, why can they not THINK? I rarely get sick, which is lucky because clearly the ship goes down without me.

Ernie said...

Suz - I know, I know - the family pic is quite visible behind the erase-a-face people. Look at you, Ms. Attention to detail. That family picture is quite old and I did realize it was back there, but I was posting this past my bedtime. I considered walking into the room to snap a photo of just the mantle, but laziness won out. This reminds me though, there is a funny, twisted leg thing going on in the photo and I might have to share that part of it for a laugh.

It is a concern that we are sending Tank to Ireland for the semester. How will he manage? Preparing meals? Not losing his passport? Fortunately there will be no garland setup involved. Ed did quite well in Europe, but he is one of the few who has his act together.

I feel fine, but would've embraced another week of no babysitting. A few littles came back today. Coach snapped a photo of e snoozing on the couch at 10:45ish and texted it to all of our kiddos.

Oh, the light remote - it is weird. I had forgotten that changing the lights was even an option. It really isn't disco-esque, but that would be fun. It's really like DO YOU WANNA BE BLINDED BY WHITE OR WOULD YOU ENJOY A MORE NATURAL FEEL? Goofy that no one could get us back to our normal without my input.

Bibliomama said...

Omg, stumbling idiots, the lot of them. It's like they got together and tried to come up with the exact way to make you feel worse instead of better. Why are families so dumb?

Okay, but the lights thing is hilarious. We always joke that women will say "I don't know" if they don't know, but men will make something - anything - up rather than confess that they don't know. "Aliens flew in and replaced all the lights bulbs".

Ernie said...

Ali - You are so right. Stumbling and idiots were never more ideal to be used in a sentence together. It was like a shit-show.

The light thing was so funny. Perhaps if I dusted more I'd have remembered that there is a weird tiny remote on the mantle in the family room and of courese Tank would've bumped it in his rush to do a half ass job. And why did Reg choose that moment to act like he knew stuff?

Pat Birnie said...

Oh my goodness — your family!!! What mantle? Really? I think I enjoy your posts so much because they bring back memories of my useless kids (who are now all functioning auccessful adults so don’t give up hope!). That dress looks great on you. I’m glad you are feeling better! I may win for the earliest New Years Eve but my excuse is we were picked up for a flight at 2am that morning. I made it to 8:30.

Ernie said...

Pat - Our kids are cut from the same cloth. I didn't even mention how I asked Mini to order something off of Amazon. I told her to put things in 'save for later.' She ended up deleting everything in my basket. Slightly problematic, but I found the stuff again.

You get a free pass for having to catch a flight. Enjoy your travels.

Amy said...

I'm laughing so hard about your lights! OMG. Good thing you remembered there was a remote!

I have concerns about my adult children - the one bought me slippers for Christmas, telling me the slippers would fit me because they were a men's 7. They were women's size 7M - this kid thought the M stood for men's. SMH. We had a conversation about foot width and how that's reflected on the size, so that's all set. But now I'm worried about what else these kids are completely clueless about. How did this happen?! I take them shoe shopping regularly...!

I didn't make any desserts this Christmas. I had a cold and was just so tired that it didn't happen. My youngest (11y/o) tried to make cookies herself, but they didn't turn out right and she blamed me, because I wrote the recipe in CURSIVE. Horrors.

Beth Cotell said...

Glad you are feeling better! I was in bed before midnight on New Year's Eve!

Ernie said...

Amy - The lights being 'off' color was so bazaar - fitting in perfectly with the chaos that happens apparently when I hide in my room for days.

You raise a good point. What else have we not taught them that we just assumed they understood? Long story to pop up here soon, but I used baking soda to put out a small fire and Curly was in awe of my baking soda uses knowledge. I don't remember when I learned it, but what other lessons have they not picked up?

Right - cursive writing in b-day cards has my kids handing me the cards to read. What on earth?