My partner, Carol, is the bread winner of the family while I have been a stay at home mom since our son, Judah, was born in 2003. Oh the irony! I say that because I swore my husband would be the one to stay home and I’d go to work. Boy, did I get that all wrong!
Anyway, I must admit as hard as I try, I am a terrible housewife. I have absolutely no “house management” skills and I stink at cleaning. When I try to organize, I tend to get overwhelmed. It amazes me to see those women who know where to put every little crumb in their house. I on the other hand have no clue. I end up sticking (or shoving if the need be) stuff in odd, out of site places so that our place looks good and I can feel some sense of accomplishment. But Lord help me when we are looking for that one item we need but can’t find because I’ve hid it so well. I won’t even begin to embarrass myself further by telling you all I’ve lost after a cleaning spree.
Aside from my unique organizing skills I have another not so popular skill. I have a tendency to break vacuum cleaners. Carol and I have been together for 14 years and I have gone through 5 vacuum cleaners. And a couple of them were certainly not cheap. In fact as I write this our most recent very expensive vacuum cleaner has something lodged in it’s hose. I remember something very long and thick being sucked up but I have no clue what it was. I tried to get it out but after a little time passed, I continued vacuuming so I could finish. I was glad it decided to over-heat when I was through but now it sits unable to be used and needing Carol’s (undivided) attention. You’d think we’d be used to this happening but Carol still complains about having to fix it every time.
OK, now onto our laundry. When I wash clothes they tend to come out with more stains than when they started. And usually existing stains will remain there. If they come out, it wasn’t on account of me but only because of some miracle. The other part of doing laundry is I’m lucky to remember when the washer has completed a load. More often than not, I forget. It’s tolerable during cooler seasons. What does that have anything to do with it you ask? Well, because our washer and dryer are in our storage building outside, over 100 degree weather doesn’t do our laundry good. In fact, I usually remember about the laundry a day or two later when Carol has asked if I’ve seen a specific item of her clothing. I’m sure I don’t have to tell you the condition of the laundry then. Let’s put it this way, it certainly isn’t mountainy fresh.
What’s that you ask? Oh, how are my cooking skills? Let me start by saying that when we are invited over to someone’s house for dinner, I am asked to bring fruit or the salad- nothing cooked unless they specifically ask Carol to do it. Yep, my reputation precedes me. I once made a cake from a box. It looked fantastic but when I tasted it, it was really bad. Responsible for bringing this to a friend’s house, I thought if I decorated it nicely, it would help the taste. You know, by adding the icing it would hide the bad taste of the cake part. Well, when my friend’s tasted it they actually had to spit it out. Another time I forgot to take the paper with the inners of the hen out before cooking it. But, I couldn’t have taken it out if I wanted because the hen was frozen. Yes, I now know you never cook poultry frozen however, I didn’t know that then. With in 40 minutes the poor hen caught on fire. And I mean a total blazing, need the fire extinguisher, fire.
The most frustrating part is when I am doing any given chore, I will spill and splatter with no surface (and at times ceiling) off limits. Once I was making pancakes and I dropped the flour before making it into my batter. Of course when I drop it, man does that stuff get everywhere! Do you know what it is like to clean it up? And I am already cleaning challenged.
While doing dishes I somehow flooded the kitchen floor with water. And while vacuuming I didn’t attach the canister properly to it’s base so when I turned it on, dirt went everywhere. All of this would be normal if it only occurred once in a while. However, that’s not the case with me unfortunately. Household duties usually are messy and uneventful endeavors.
I remember as a kid watching those 1950’s sitcom and being so angry how the wives were expected to cook and clean. Even in the 1970’s all of my friend’s moms stayed at home caring for the house and kids. They all had incredibly neat homes with everything in it’s place and I have to admit I quite enjoyed being the recipient of home cooked meals.
Well, I’ve come to accept, Donna Reed, I am not. Lucille Ball’s character on I Love Lucy would be a more accurate comparison. I suppose one could say at least I’m consistent in regards to my housewife duties. When I approach a chore I (and my family) know there is a greater chance it won’t be done well and will be an adventure sort of speak. And when I do it badly, i’m never half assed. I go all the way to really make it a disaster. How many people can say that? And when there are those moments I surprise myself and do it well, there is nothing like seeing the shocked look on my family’s face. It will be funny to hear Judah describe what it was like with having a stay at home mom when he gets older. Let’s just say, he won’t be describing the housewife of the 1950’s that’s for sure!