Sunday, September 23, 2007

Housekeeping: Not my forte

"Do you have any idea why there is a baggie with a carrot in it in the middle of the hallway?" Mr. Peevie just asked me.

This is the kind of question that is "normal" in my home. We have the kind of household in which it is not entirely unexpected to encounter miscellaneous fruits and vegetables, in or out of containers, in non-kitchen parts of the house.

Grapes that aspire to become raisins could obtain asylum here, because chances are good that they will find themselves wrinkling up, forgotten and unmolested, in a random corner of the living room.

I have found dried-up apple cores resting comfortably under Power Rangers, and zip-lock bags of cereal salad in purses that I haven't used in six months.

Sometimes my house reminds me of Mel Gibson's house in Signs, when he played a widowed dad with a young daughter with a weird (and fortuitous) glass-of-water fetish. There are empty, half-empty, and nearly full glasses sitting around on most flat surfaces: window sills, counter tops, end tables, and shelves. Water-solvent aliens beware! Also, Diet Coke-solvent, and wine-solvent aliens.

My kids tend to melt down into puddles of woe and angst when they are hungry, so I try to avoid this by always making sure that I have healthy snacks with me. The end result, however, is that the rejected snacks gang up together to form science experiments in the car; or they find their way into the crevices between the couch cushions and start organizing a government and forming armies. I'm sure they will soon be powerful enough to split atoms, and then it will be time for us to move.

My housekeeping goal is to not make my kids or unsuspecting visitors ill. This is just another operational example of my life's motto: Low standards are the key to low stress and happiness.

You are welcome in my house anytime. Just make sure that you look behind you before you take a seat.

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