FAMILY FOLLIES 24/7: Household items should be used for exactly that
September 6, 2009
One of these days I’m going to own something that is solely, completely, blessedly my own. And when I do, I’m going to get out the ladder, shimmy my way into the attic and hide it in the deepest, darkest corner that I can find, probably under a good layer of insulation.
It’s not that I mind sharing my stuff with my family. I’m actually quite good at that. What bothers me is that that they rarely use it for its intended purpose and never, ever put it back where it goes. This makes me crazy. I swear my kids think the sole reason I buy spoons and butter knives is so they have something to dig in the dirt with.
Tracking these utensils down in the garden is one thing, but actually trying to eat with them after they’ve been bent at 90-degree angles is a whole other issue altogether. Believe me, I don’t need any extra help dribbling cereal down my front in the morning. And despite what they think, I don’t keep tweezers in my make-up bag so my husband and kids can use them to feed crickets to our salamander. For their information, I need them to manage the forest that grows between my eyebrows each night while I sleep.
Someday, I’m going to own a pair of scissors that will be used for cutting paper instead of Barbie doll hair, hard plastic or outdoor foliage that will be placed lovingly back in the cupboard after they’ve been used. I really don’t feel that this is so much so ask. And Lord knows I would die a happy girl if my purse could be used strictly for carrying my wallet, car keys and Chapstick instead of as a receptacle for crackers, used Kleenex, Matchbox cars and the occasional wet or slimy mystery item that I’ve been known to stick my hand in.
I want to line the kids up and say, “Look, the couch pillows aren’t trampolines, the one nice pair of high heels I own isn’t for playing dress-up outside in the rain and all of my newly washed bedding isn’t for putting in the back of the neighbor’s pickup truck so you and your friends can all play house.
The dog kennel was never intended as something to lock each other in, windows aren’t meant to be used as baseball pitching targets and marker looks much better in a coloring book than on your brand new jeans or on your bedroom wall. I love you all dearly, but this isn’t rocket science.”
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Anyway, I’ll probably save the lecture for another time. Right now I need to borrow my husband’s gas card to get gum off the front porch.
From the Mouths of Babes: From then 3-year-old Amilee Peltz when a store clerk complimented her on her beautiful dress, “Momma says I’m beautiful even when I’m naked!”
Melissa Previdi of Windsor is a mother of two children. Her Family Follies 24/7 column will appear every other Wednesday on the Chicken Soup page. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Melissa also would like to share any funny short family stories you may have for her From the mouths of babes portion of her column.