Posts Tagged colleen markley
Yes, My Dog is Crazy, and Yes, He Needs Medication
You might have heard this before, but my dog is crazy. Not Gryffin (short for Sir Godric Gryffindor of Harry Potter fame) -he’s my first dog, the older dog, the perfect dog. Firstborn son dog. Dog that finished every training class they had at the local animal shelter and was recommended to be a pet therapy dog for hospitals and senior centers because he was soooo good and soooo perfect. That dog I like. But I liked him so much I figured, hey, why not get a second dog? Then my pet can have a pet. I think he’s lonely when I’m not home. He needs a puppy. Great idea, right? Wrong.
Welcome Nicky. Short for Nicolas Flamel, also of Harry Potter fame. Except the only magic this dog has is that he hasn’t managed to kill himself. From the beginning he wasn’t “normal”. Most dogs can be crated and learn not to poop in their crate. This dog pooped in the crate and rolled in it so that anytime I left the house for an hour I had to bathe him. And get poop off of him. Gross. So away goes the crate. He doesn’t like to be contained or restrained. I get it. Except when I leave now he starts eating not just anything he can find laying around, but also the walls. Not just the corners, or the moldings, although he ate those as well, in addition to the actual walls.
Man Flu – She’s Sick; He’s Sick(er)
You’ve noticed right? Or maybe suspected? That there is something drastically different between when a woman is sick and a man is sick? It’s OK. You’re not alone. Here’s what happens. To All Men. Without Question or Exception. Sometimes, men get sick. Sometimes they don’t whine. Sometimes they go to work and tough it out. Sometimes they muster through the weekend and still do household chores. And then at some point, their Healthy Manhood expires and they act like a Sick Man. And what Sick Men do is not the same as what Sick Women do.
When He’s Sick: He wakes up. He has A Sniffle. Maybe he has a Tickle in his throat. He moans. He Feels Sick. This means he can’t get out of bed. He can barely move. He must remain lying down, stay in bed and Recuperate.
When She’s Sick: She wakes up. She has A Sniffle. Maybe a Tickle in her throat. She gargles with the leftover toothpaste in her mouth and spits. The Tickle doesn’t go away. She gets the kids ready for school. Has some tea. The kids forgot they need to make a cardboard castle for a poem project for school. The rest of the tea is forgotten as they excavate the recycling in the garage so they can finish the project in thirteen minutes. She drives the rest of carpool to school, balancing a castle on her lap. On the way home she picks up dog food, goes to the bank, and remembers the kids lunch supplies for the rest of the week. When she gets home her tea is cold and Himself hasn’t moved. He moans a little in his sleep. She forgets why she married him. It certainly wasn’t for his immune system.
When He’s Sick: He uses four boxes of tissues. Some of these tissues make it into the garbage can. The rest spread across the floor like a carpet badge of honor snot.Read More
Husbands Helping at the Holidays, A Primer for Sanity
So a couple weeks ago we hosted 36 people for Thanksgiving dinner. It was quite a feat, kept me occupied for two weeks prior getting everything ready, and made me laugh and curse and laugh at how my husband “helps”. He really means well. It’s just that I don’t think he has a true party gene. It’s like when Jennifer Aniston said Brad Pitt was missing a sensitivity chip. My husband is missing the party part of his brain.
As I was talking about this on Thanksgiving, many of my fellow sisters and mothers and cohorts on this planet could commiserate. Their husbands were also missing something in their brain – what else could lead them to think that reorganizing the toolshed was a helpful part of the party process? The first question is – do they really think that something like cleaning out the garage should be done for a party? Or is it just something to do in order to avoid actual important work instead?
I would like to put forth that these husband (party pooper) actions are not ill-intentioned. They truly believe they are doing good things for the overall party needs. If they were just trying to avoid work, they wouldn’t pick another chore – they’d watch football on the couch, they’d escape the house and go to the bar, they’d run an errand and not return for hours. These “Helpful” Husband Chores can be very upsetting and confusing to the wives who are busy balancing every other item on the to-do list. Here, I have compiled a helpful list of what the husbands* are likely to want to do based on personality. I’m not sure if it’s fixable, but it’s at least explainable. And laughable. Lordy we need to laugh.Read More
Yes. There’s More.
In case you got lost… this is a supplement to the blog “No Joke:How Not To Treat A Volunteer….Lessons from the trenches from a Class Mom on Probation“. You might want to read that one first. This is just an add-on of another story that has been lingering in the department of Things That Annoy Me. Or just read on. It’s a stand alone story so you’ll be fine….
I might not be as annoyed as I am if this were the first time offense with the group email response to a single situation. But it’s not. This email edict has happened before. The first time this happened was last spring. My father-in-law was in the ICU for two months. He sadly passed away in April, but as you can imagine, between February and March our family was in turmoil. I had told all my kids teachers and they were so thoughtful and caring. I had told the school guidance counselors who made themselves available and my daughter found such solace in talking with her school counselor that to this day she still keeps the little notes they made together. “I am safe”. “I am OK”. Her biggest worry was that something horrible was going to happen to someone else she loved at any second.
No Joke: How Not To Treat A Volunteer…. Lessons from the Trenches from a Class Mom on Probation
Well, I’m not technically on probation, but I am waiting to find out if I’m fired. And no, I’m not kidding.
See, I usually kid and joke about stuff quite a lot. I find it human. I think it’s good stress relief. And most of the time the people around me like it too. Except for, apparently, this time. Half a dozen people told me they liked my funny bit that I included on the form I handed out as Katie’s class mom on back to school night. This is the form where we asked for checks for teacher gifts for holiday, checks for teacher gifts for end of year, checks for PTO dues, and checks for PTO annual fund. That’s a lot of checks. But there was one who whined. And complained. And went to the powers that be to tattle. Because I made a joke. I’m not saying it was a good joke. Sure it was probably in a bit of bad taste, but there were no curse words and I didn’t borrow anything from Louis C.K. I just added a line. “If I write one more check I might kill someone”.
Funny? I thought so. Not to some. OK. I’m sorry. I legitimately am. Not everyone likes edgy humor and I suppose to those who are ultra politically correct killing jokes aren’t funny. I get that. I hate when someone says “Rule of thumb” because its origin was back in the days when there were laws on the books that said a man could beat his wife provided that the stick he used was no wider than his thumb. I hear that line and I cringe, but I recognize that it isn’t a call for action for more domestic violence. It’s just something people say. As far as expressions go, I’ve heard some that are a wee bit worse than that.
It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year…A Back to School Special
The kids are going back to school. Without me.
Just kidding – I’m sure I’ll need to be there for a PTO meeting, training about how to behave in the library, volunteering in the library, concerts, art shows, art class volunteer duty – here’s your glue, book fair, holiday fair, fair’s fair, the mini marathon what-now, drop off, pick up, rainy days, you forgot your lunch/ boots/ mittens/ hat/ don’t call DYFS I swear I told my kid to dress warmly, pizza day, taco day, what is that on your lunch tray day, and of course, special events day. Because the other events were all not special enough. Am I bitter? Not really. Just tired.
Sometimes people ask me if I like being a stay at home mom. Firstly, if I said “no”, you’d think I was a horrible mother who didn’t love her children, or that I don’t appreciate the opportunity to be with them and not “have” to work. Trust me, I appreciate not having to drag my butt to an office every day. Secondly, I’m not a stay at home mom. I’m a drive all over the place for my kids, run errands, do grocery shopping six times a day, wait I forgot we need propane for the grill head back out, and where are the dogs they need a walk mom. I don’t like it all the time. But I love my kids. Most of the time.
The 40th Birthday Blog…
So I am 40 today. That makes me old, reflective, and writing. I am halfway to 80. I am 20 twice. I am starting to realize that I am a little bit quirky. My husband snorted because I said “a little bit”. Maybe I’m just starting to realize it more as I grow wiser and more introspective. Much wiser. And much more quirky. At least I’m not yet “Batty” – that’s usually reserved for octogenarians. But me?
I am a Prepper. Not just like the zombies might come and we should have a supply of foods and medicine for everyone in the house and a “go bag” in case we need to bug out. I do all that and have all that. Including gluten-free emergency food packs for Katie. And we have a generator. The kind that powers the entire house in an apocalypse. But I also prep the bathrooms. To me an emergency occurs not when there is no more toilet paper in the bathroom, but before that, when the spare rolls are down to just one. If I could wallpaper the room with spare rolls I would. But in the meantime I have one of those toilet paper storage rolls in every bathroom. And they should always be stocked. If they become empty, everything comes to a grinding halt, and everyone needs to participate in the restocking phenomenon. My kids think this is weird. That’s just another name for quirky.
I hate dirty bathrooms – and germs in general. Or bathrooms that might be dirty. Or bathrooms that were used by someone outside the first generation of our family tree or my closest friends. Or too many people even within that circle. I have cootie issues. I can’t use a use a bathroom after a certain number of guests at a party have used it. Those kinds of odds means someone must have germs. Or syphilis. Same applies if it’s been too many days between a thorough cleaning and a house guest. What if they contracted a horrible disease that hasn’t manifested itself? Like a stomach bug? Or ebola? I will climb numerous flights of stairs to find a clean bathroom instead of using one that looks perfectly fine but might have invisible cooties. Of course I could always clean it. Like now. Good lord let me get my Clorox wipes. Or else hide under my covers. Maybe take a nap.Read More
Real Life House Tours
It’s house tour season. For those of you who have not been on a house tour, let me explain. There are Perfect People with Perfect Houses who are also Generous and Kind, and they open their homes to various charity groups so that they can charge a nominal fee to raise money for good causes. Then voyeurs like me take off their shoes and walk around said Perfect Houses so I can goggle and ooh and ahh and then feel generally inferior about my own house and lack of perfection. And then I shake my head and realize this is indeed a first-world problem and I am a spoiled brat. I like my house. It’s just not quite tour worthy. But I thought it would be a good idea to make a quick reference guide in case anyone ever does want to tour our house. You never know. I could be famous.
Perfect House on Tour: Has a grand front walkway and door and lots of beautiful landscaping as you approach for your ultimate curb appeal.
My House That I Actually Live In: We only open our front door to get our takeout delivery. I used to say there could be a colony of rabbits living on our front porch and I’d never know it. We come in through the garage and into the basement. And remember to be careful not to trip on barbies, legos, fourteen pairs of shoes for two children, random coats and backpacks and leftover snacks and party favors. Last night I hosted book club and my ladies informed me there is a bird living in the pretty wreath on the front door. Not only did I not know we were harboring wildlife, I had forgotten we had a wreath on the front door. I checked it out in the daylight today. It’s not just a mommy bird. There’s baby birds too. Now we are roommates. I don’t evict families.
Perfect House on Tour: Please take your shoes off when you arrive.
My House That I Actually Live In: You better keep your shoes on so you don’t get your feet dirty. We live in a hovel. The dogs are in and out all day long and their dirty feet leave a film of pawprint everywhere they go. Don’t worry though – that little brown round thing in the kitchen on the floor? Definitely not poop. Probably a chocolate covered raisin from snack time. From three days ago. Most definitely not feces. Like 98% sure…just leave your shoes on. For sure.Read More
What I Really Really Want For 2015
Trust me. You want these things too. The only problem is that they haven’t been invented yet. I bet the new year can make it happen.
Christmas (and Hanukkah, and Kwanza, and Yule) has come and gone and I’m still picking up pieces of wrapping paper that have hidden themselves in odd places in the house. Not that the holidaze are all about the presents, but I mean come on. Americans spend $465 BILLION on Christmas each year, give or take a few sheckles. So with all that money to spend, some of us might want something actually useful. Like, instead of the (insert awful/ annoying/ silly/ not what you would have picked for yourself) gift here, imagine how fabulous life would be if we had:
The Antidote to Whining and Nonsense.
I want to give my daughter a pill to take along with her fluoride vitamin and it would take away the whiny voice, foot stomping, general eye rolling and sassy attitude. Or maybe a vaccine so it’s permanent. Or my favorite idea, some kind of weaponry so I could take aim at her when she’s being annoying and it distributes sparkles and happy thoughts, like fairy dust.
Expert Robot Assistant
Sometimes I’d like a break. I need someone like Rosie from the Jetsons. Someone who can unload the dishwasher, put the groceries away, get the kids dressed and into their coats and shoes on time for school. I’d like to finish my coffee, while it’s still lukewarm.Read More
I will admit it. Thanksgiving is stressing me out a little this year. Don’t get me wrong – I love Thanksgiving – it’s actually my favorite holiday. If Thanksgiving were the only thing I had to do I’d be fine. But there’s all this other stuff in my life that also requires attention so hosting 30 people for a feast is making me a little wonky. Of course, I just finished “hosting” 430 people for a local fundraiser, so you’d think I’d keep it in perspective. But sometimes I have trouble with that. So in order to remind myself that my Thanksgiving feast stress is nothing, I’ve decided I’d focus on pilgrim stress instead.
The pilgrims put together a feast for dinner as the highlight of not starving to death. That was a lot of stress, to not die. On the Maslow hierarchy of needs that’s pretty basic. They were not coordinating sports carpools, they were not keeping track of the school calendar, their children were not begging for more tech time while you tried to mash the potatoes. The kids were not bored or annoyed by more work because they were happy they had not starved. So let’s compare my modern day issues with pilgrim issues.
2014: The turkey is dry/overcooked/undercooked/the gravy sucks.
1621: At least the turkey didn’t attack you and kill you. Or distract you while you were hunting it and you were eaten by a bear or a wild boar. Or attacked by the mean Native American tribe that wouldn’t give you corn unless they were roasting us with some of it.
2014: Aunt Petunia decided to come even though she has a terrible cough and cold and she’s hacking and spraying germs all over the shrimp cocktail and everyone around her.
1621: At least it’s not small pox. Or Ebola, most likely. A cold is annoying. It won’t kill you (or your husband, even if he complains like mine doesRead More