What's That on My Window?

I think somebody threw poop at my window.

No, seriously.

Check it out. What do you guys think?

Ignore the other smudges (I blame four kids, two dogs, and very little desire to spend all day with a bottle of Windex) and focus on the chunky brown smear smack-dab in the middle. Of my second-story window.

Now, not to brag or anything, but I consider myself somewhat of a poop expert. Lord knows I've dealt with more than my fair share of it, often in a much more hands-on manner than anyone should ever have to. I've found it on our pug and  in our plunger, crusted into a toothbrush, deposited into a toy, sprayed all over my arm and leg, smeared all over our bathroom floor and on the wall, and on the carpet so many times I can't even count (including one weird incident that nobody ever 'fessed up to. Oh wait: make that TWO weird incidents that nobody ever 'fessed up to). Point is, I'm pretty keen at recognizing feces - dog, human, liquid, solid, you name it.

So when I opened the curtains this morning I was met face-to-face with this vile smear. And I was like, gasp! And then I was like ... WTF? Because, I mean ... poop. On the window. It had to have been thrown there; I highly doubt someone manually smeared it on with a step ladder.

I'm fairly sure it's dog poop because if you're gonna hurl fecal matter, you need only look to our yard for raw materials. It's a treasure trove out there. But number one, who wants to touch dog poop? And number two (hehe): why? We're peace-loving people. We don't bother anyone. There's no beef with our neighbors, no vendetta that can only be satisfied by fecally defacing our property.

Poop thrown at my window: hate crime, random act of boredom, or roving band of poo-flinging monkeys?

Either way, it's crappy.  

Chauffeuring is Crappy

The first week of school is over halfway done, and I can certifiably confirm one thing.

Road rage. I haz it.

We live close enough to the school that the bus is not an option, but too far away to walk with four kids in tow (no. thanks!). And this year, with the new preschool hours, I have to make four - count 'em, FOUR - separate trips to the school and back everysingleday. In my suburban-mom-minivan that I swore I'd never drive. I should just paint the shit yellow and write "TAXI" on the side.

Pickup and drop-off is a nightmare. Yesterday afternoon I was blocked in for an extra ten minutes by a ridiculous jerk who decided to park crossways in the parking lot and then leave her vehicle (to fetch her kids who, by the looks of them, were in at least fourth or fifth grade and could have found her themselves). This morning, I was blocked into the drop-off lane by someone who, despite a huge expanse of lane in front of her, refused to pull up. I couldn't pull out of the lane because I couldn't get around her, and the car behind me was parked close enough that I worried about bumping them if I backed up (because remember when this happened?). She just ignored the honks, and the queue of outraged parents building up behind her while she sat there idling and did nothing.

People are idiots in the drop-off lane. They don't seem to get that the drop-off lane is for, oh, I don't know, maybe DROPPING OFF your kids. And that the parking lot is for, perhaps, PARKING. When someone parks in the drop-off lane, it's like the equivalent of being in a huge line at the grocery store checkout and saying, "Oops! I forgot a couple of things. I''ll be right back," and making the entire line wait.

Rude, rude, rude. And these people are supposed to be adults. And teaching their kids to be considerate of others. I mean, I may have road rage but at least I keep it civil in front of my kids. It pretty much goes like this:

Out loud: What is this car doing?
Silently to myself: OMG. Seriously, WTF? 
Out loud: Come on, pull up please!
Silently to myself: Ya effin' moron!
Out loud: I'm waiting back here!
Silently to myself: What are you, blind?!  

To date, no middle fingers have been displayed. I can't make any promises for the future. One day at a time, kids.

Otherwise, though, school is going well. So far. Colin is a third-grader, Cameron is in Kindergarten, and Coby started preschool (where, he promised, he is going to be "as good as a chair." Which I guess is pretty good since I've never actually known any troublemaking chairs). I'm pretty proud that I managed not to cry when Cameron started Kindergarten like I did when Colin started. It's been four days, and I haven't received any embarrassing phone calls from the school, so that's good.

Are your kids in school yet? How's your back-to-school coming along?

Mommy Dearest

I spent the first few days of summer vacation griping relentlessly about how much all this togetherness sucked and how the kids were draining the life out of me with their messes and destruction and tape in weird places. But then something amazing happened.

My mom moved in.

Have I made my love and appreciation for this woman obvious enough?

Previously four and a half hours away, she decided she wanted to be closer to us. So after she retired in June, she relocated to Iowa - and until she finds a place, is living in our basement. I set up some shackles and an old dirty mattress down there and got some really strong chains and she's right at home.*

*I'm just kidding, the mattress is clean.

Anyway, it has been WONDERFUL. First of all because Curtis and I both actually get along with my mother very well, and I enjoy having her here (and the boys are in heaven having regular access to their adoring "Mimi" for the first time in their lives). But also because my mom is a neat freak (see here and here and here) who enjoys housekeeping. Since she's been here, my house has been perpetually clean - at least clean enough so that if company dropped by, I wouldn't have to apologize for the mess and/or the funny odor. I haven't done laundry in like a month. I've been able to make solo trips to the grocery store! And go on a date with my husband! It's a miracle. I feel spoiled rotten, y'all. I keep saying, "Mom, remember that you don't have to do any of this," lest we end up feuding on a talk show over her greedy daughter using her for free labor ... but at least so far, she adamantly insists that she is enjoying herself tremendously.*

*And I mean ... she's stopped wailing and clawing at the basement wall when she's chained up down there, soooo ....

I was anxious at first about how it would go. Would we get on each other's nerves? Would the kids drive her crazy? Would she ever be able to figure out how to work our remote control by herself? But to everyone's delight, the summer has actually turned out to be - dare I say - enjoyable. I'm not feeling stretched in a million directions, so I'm actually enjoying the dudes more. I cook, which I like to do, and my mom cleans, which she likes to do, and we both take care of the kids. It's like having a sister-wife who doesn't sleep with my husband. WIN!

With this kind of help, we could totally have another baby!

I'm kidding.

... I think.


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