Tuesday, October 21, 2008


I'm especially humiliated tonight. Leila was doing something in my bedroom, telling me she had a "wonderful surprise" for me. Generally, I don't like surprises, and I really don't like them when they are happening in my bedroom without me. Now, I once "cleaned" my mom's nightstand while she was out for the evening, and she ripped me a new one. I was confused at the time; her nightstand has two cabinet doors, and I thought it would make a perfect Barbie house, so I, very neatly, shoved all her stuff out of the way, refolded all the sweaters that were in there, and made it half Barbie house, and half "clean." If you've ever met my mother, or if you had met her in the late seventies, you would know that there was never anything in her possession that wasn't already clean. She used to rinse her woodchips, and wash the outside of her house. She mopped the kitchen floor once a week, and that was before she had children. She's relaxed a little now, but, boy, she was exhausting. Anyway, she had a little fit and shooed me out of her room, away from my Barbie house, and that was that. I had a garage sale doll house that didn't have doors, and I made complicated Barbie houses using open picture books to create rooms and hallways; I think its only natural that I wanted my Barbies to experience the opening and closing of doors, instead of always being pregnant and going into very breathy labor (I know, don't ask, my Barbies lead very sordid lives, and my Donny doll, of Donny and Marie, had it made. He was a playa.)
So this gets me back to my humiliation. Leila did not play in my room, or make a Barbie house, or anything like that. She folded all the clothes that were piled on the end of the bed. The end of my bed, and I always refer to my side of the bed as "my bed," is where everything I've worn for at least the last week, ends up. I'm not good at hanging up my clothes. I'm not good at putting away clean laundry. It all ends up at the end of my bed, and at night I get under the covers and shove my feet under the pile, and, even though having all this weight on my feet cannot possibly be good for my feet or ankles, I go to sleep. My husband use to make fun of me before we were married because I would go to sleep, not only with clothes at the end of the bed, but with books and magazines and papers all over the bed. I would just slide in underneath everything and sleep like a kitten.
So Leila folded all my clothes. Clearly, the neatnik gene skips a generation because she has it and I don't. I have to hand it to my mom, though: she never says anything when she walks in my house, but she must be thinking "how on earth did I ever raise a pig like this?" Just goes to show that you can try to teach your kids to be tidy, but some of us are just hard wired to be slobs. She must be very disappointed, but I gave her a grandkid, and I let her spend a lot of time with the grandkid, so she'd better keep the rest to herself.
It just occurs to me that I recently pointed my very neat mother-in-law to this blog, and after reading this she's never going to want to come for a visit. If she throws caution to the wind and comes anyway, she'll probably pack a has-mat suit, and I don't blame her at all.
In other news, Leila got her school pictures back today, and they are nostrilicious. I kept looking at them, wondering what about this perfectly nice picture was bugging me, and I finally figured out that she has her head tilted up and her nostrils kind of flared, and they look enormous. She gets her round nostrils from me; my husband has what I call quarter-slot nostrils. Now, all I can see when I look at her first grade picture are those huge nostrils.

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