Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Marshmallows Anyway

         Image taken from: http://shop.poshbrats.com/ekmps/shops/poshbrats/images/marshmallow-scrub-1220-p.jpg
It doesn't take much for me to feel palpably discouraged. And I tend to blog when I'm down rather than when I'm up. Makes for a pretty uninspiring blog if you ask me! This is really not the stuff of public consumption. It's more like a therapeutic journal entry. Tonight I feel derailed by trying to limit my son's computer and video time while doing things together like decorate the Christmas tree and make tissue paper flowers to bring cheer to a dear relative who is very ill in the hospital. The discouragement set in when my brand-new strand of twinkle lights turned out to be defective. Half the strand lights up with a cheery twinkle and the other half is dark and dead. There's no use decorating a tree without working lights. No use making hot chocolate and trying to create a festive atmosphere for an aborted evening of decorating. Besides, my husband is out working so it's just Knox and his tired mom to make merry.

So we moved on to the tissue paper flowers. Happy, cheery and bright, right? Except that after diligently cutting out tissue paper squares of all colors, I discovered that I didn't have the beads or the pipe cleaners needed to assemble the paper bouquet. So instead, Knox is watching a DVD after I had already given him extra computer time while I talked to a long-distance friend. And I am pondering how quickly discouragement can set in and how little it takes to deflate me until my spirits have all the oomph of a limp, sagging balloon. Creating an atmosphere and keeping it all going (the laundry, the dishes, the meals) is hard work. I'm discouraged by the setbacks and the sink full of dirty dishes as my energy wanes and the evening's intended cheer has been dampened.

But Knox just asked for hot cocoa with marshmallows anyway. He doesn't need everything to be just so. There's no valid reason in his book why we can't go right ahead and have hot cocoa and marshmallows anyway. What better way to cheer up a dull evening? Enjoy some marshmallows anyway! Pile them high! Maybe I need that little child of mine to show me the way sometimes more than he needs me to make everything as wondrous as a storybook or a catalog page or someone else's blog ...

Sunday, November 28, 2010

A Murphy's Oil Soap Kind of Day

It's a domestic, Murphy's Oil Soap kind of day here at Chisholm Place. I did some actual hands-and-knees scrubbing of my kitchen floor. That's a mighty rare occurrence 'round these parts. The soft lemony smell of Murphy's Oil Soap makes it worth it--domestic aromatherapy. I also take a certain satisfaction in aggressively rubbing out spots and blemishes; insert Lady MacBeth quote here: "Out, out, damned spot!" I'm taking this wee blogging break to connect myself to the millennia of women who have kept their homes and done domestic labor. It's never-ending. My home will never be as shiny and dust-free all at one time as I would like, but at least I'll have one or two places to look that are cleaner than they were before. It's all about the psychological editing and cropping of the view. And at least the Murphy's Oil Soap makes it smell clean! My boys are out buying twinkle lights for the Christmas tree, so I'd better get back to my domestic chores before they return and the decorating begins!
P.S. These vintage housewives smiled incessantly while scrubbing filth.
I listen to music and sigh and groan a lot. ;-)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Too Busy (and Tired) to Blog!

I hate the "I'm so busy" truism that most of us are afflicted with in modern life, so I've tried to make mine original by saying: "I'm uncomfortably busy right now." What I'm actually trying to convey with this little phrase is that I don't want to be so busy and that it is uncomfortable and that it's only right now--it's not a perpetual state that I will choose to remain in. It's right now while my husband's new office space needs attention to be ready for business. It's right now while we enter the holiday season. It's right now while so many good things to be involved in doing sprang up so quickly that I'm left with not even enough time to go out and buy the new shoes that I badly need. I'm not talking about a stereotypical woman's love affair with shoes. I'm talking about my shoes are so old that rainwater seeps into them, that one pair fell apart completely, and that my feet are sore every night in exaggerated ways. I'm talking about actually needing new shoes, not just coveting them!

I love my therapeutic exercise of blogging and I hope to have more time to do it soon, and more nights that I'm not drooling on my pillow by 9:30pm. But blogging, like Facebook, is something that I can put aside when my days are full up. I've drafted posts in my head, like I've drafted thank you notes and birthday cards that have never seen a stamp or envelope. I do, however, manage to keep up on my favorite blog (SouleMama) and squeeze in a few visits to a couple others (recently, LifeInGrace and Monked&Fifed) in the beloved blogosphere. I love SouleMama for many reasons, but one of them is that there is a rhythm and a schedule to her blog, so I know that Fridays will simply be a photo of a special moment, the weekends feature her sponsors and their giveaways, and M/T/W/Th will be snapshots of her life of home, family, farm and craft. Blogging really takes time, and those who do it regularly are truly committed to it. I admire them and love to read their blogs, but I honestly wouldn't want to manage a much-visited and commented-upon blog. But, as an acquaintance in high school commented once when I said I couldn't imagine being a supermodel: "Oh, Sara, you'll never have to worry about that!" (It was funny, honest and a little mean.) I like that my blog is quietly waiting here for me when I get the urge.