All burnt out and nowhere to go

By Mir
September 21, 2007

Lately, by the time I get to Friday, I’m lucky if I can still speak in complete sentences. I pack the kids off to school and return home to curl up with my laptop, and after a while I discover that I’ve been sipping my tea and staring at my wall for upwards of half an hour, and AMAZINGLY ENOUGH, my work is not doing itself. Go figure.

But after a week of school and work and activities and doctors’ appointments and paying bills and grocery shopping and whatever else it is that I end up doing between the hours of 6:00 am and midnight every damn day, by Friday I am just tapped out.

This is also usually the day that I pat myself on the back for having remembered to the do the laundry BEFORE the weekend. After I get done congratulating myself on my foresight, I then commence smacking myself in the face because it’s not the putting the laundry into the machine that takes time, but the putting away. And guess where all of that laundry is RIGHT NOW? If you guessed “half in the dryer and half in a basket next to the dryer” you win a fabulous prize. Well, no, you don’t. Wanna come over and help me pair socks, though?

So anyway, sorry, but you do not get a cohesive story today.

* * * * *

We’ve finally met Monkey’s soccer coach (he was absent from the first soccer game on account of his fraternity was having a tailgate… welcome to a football town). He is a fine young specimen of, um, soccer coaching. I’m actually old enough to be his mother, right? So on the heels of my FIRST reaction I then felt old and dirty for noticing how cute he is. And that was just wrong because I AM old but I’m very clean.

* * * * *

So Chickadee came home with a progress report this week, but Monkey never did. I finally asked him to ask his teacher about it, and he reported back that “she’s working on them.” You know, I never realized how much I liked silly little things like uniformity. At their old school, a class letter went home every month. At the new school, they proudly informed us that class letters go home every WEEK. Except that a class letter went home the FIRST week and NO ONE has received one since then. And then I have one kid with a progress report and one kid without one, because they’re… optional? Designated for… whatever date works for you? I have no idea.

This is on top of the whole “sure, we’ll test your kids for the gifted program and let you know” thing, which apparently consists of Monkey spending half his day in testing and Chickadee being promoted to gifted math WITHOUT being tested, and no results or even progress updates ever coming home. Their dad keeps asking me if they got into the program, and I am being 100% truthful when I tell him, “… MAYBE?”

* * * * *

My Discover bill has arrived. My Discover bill with my new computer on it. I haven’t opened it yet. I am afraid to, even though I know exactly what it says. It’s just that I like to put off the weeping for as long as possible.

* * * * *

And speaking of money, Evil Bank is STILL sending me account statements, and when I don’t hate the world with a full throttle of vehemence for a moment or two I like to call them up and tell them to STOP IT ALREADY. Every time I call, they assure me that this was my final statement and my accounts really are closed. I have THREE final statements on each account, now. I’m so lucky.

* * * * *

Otto has left me. Just for the weekend, but still. Sheesh. I am trying to psych myself up for a weekend “just like the old days!” with the kids, but I do rather enjoy having that guy around, you know?

So this morning at breakfast Monkey bursts out with, “Oh nooooo! Otto is going to miss pancakes with us tomorrow!” I agreed that he would likely be very sad about that, indeed.

Then Chickadee insisted that we not have pancakes without him because it wouldn’t be right. Monkey immediately agreed, and I made it unanimous because, hey, Otto is the pancake maker and Saturday is my morning to sit back and eat bon-bons.

And then I put cookies in the kids’ lunches, because these kids, they are pretty awesome.

* * * * *

And now for a random plug: Win fabulous prizes! Maybe! If you’re not already shopping with me over on Want Not, maybe you’d like to pop over today for a chance to win a kajeet phone or some Oh Mama! nutrition bars.

See, when I have nothing to say over there, I just give stuff away. Woo!

* * * * *

I’ve discovered a corollary to Murphy’s Law, and I’m going to call it the Law of Reverse Retail Availability. Yesterday I went to a kids’ consignment store looking for a raincoat for Monkey and some new pants for Chickadee. I left with a raincoat for Chickadee and pants for Monkey, because that’s what I found. Whoops.

* * * * *

I think it’s time for me to go stare into space for another half an hour….


  1. lauren

    Laundry is my life around here too..and how is it that I always run out of steam just as the dryer stops? I end up with 45 loads of old wrinkled (but clean) laundry that need to be folded but somehow just end up cycling through again. I like mine REALLY clean.
    Have fun this weekend-even without Otto and Pancakes.

  2. Heather

    Backwards shopping? Oh dear. At least you came out with things that are useful – me, I’d come out with a flibberdywidget that I got because it was just *such* a good deal. *doh*

  3. All Adither

    You did pretty well at the consignment store. I usually end up leaving with a raincoat, pants, a puzzle, three shirts, a hat, that adorable little dress over there and, if they sell anything for moms, something sparkly that will surely make my life easier.

  4. Vanda

    All I can say is thank who ever that my hubby has done the socks since my 42 year old was in his early teens. Now it’s just us two he still get the job because ummm well I forgot how do to it and beside I only wear socks if it’s snowing out.

  5. Beth

    Having worked on an university campus for over 8 years, eventually I’ve come to an agreement with myself. I’m allowed to be a “dirty old woman” and enjoy the scenery. Just no touching! Enjoy the fact that a college kid is interested enough in kids that he’s willing to coach ;-)

    And the horrible realization this summer was that this year’s crop of incoming freshmen actually *could legally* be my kids, if I had gotten married and then pregnant right out of high school. sigh.

  6. Jenny

    We live near a college campus and, since we live on a busy street without sidewalks and the campus is a (mostly) closed campus with lovely tree-shaded avenues and such, we take our dog over there to run since we’re all less likely to end up squashed. Also, it’s where we both went to college and we like to be all nostalgic and “Kids these days…”.

    ANYWAY, the new crop has arrived here too and I realized with some startlement that I am now old enough, technically, to have given birth to them, if I had gotten started right away. This makes me want to shake my fist at them in a curmudgeonly manner and tell them to comb their hair and put on some damn pants already, do you call that a dress? Because I can see London AND France. And then I take my elderly husband home and we soak our dentures in Polident while the dog makes a nest in the pile of previously clean socks.

  7. BethR

    I rarely if ever actually put laundry away; it just circulates from basket (clean) to basket (dirty). Drives my husband insane, but OTOH he never puts it away either, so whatever. It seems more efficient that way, just like my policy of never making beds.

  8. SusieJ

    I just started doing laundry once a week, instead of a load a day. I gave each kid a baset, with all of their clothes, and send them to their room to put them away. No dessert until it’s done.

  9. tammy

    In honor of the absence of Otto, we too shall abstain from pancakes tomorrow. We will just have bourbon and waffles.

  10. angela

    I’ve finally gotten in the habit of actually folding the laundry within a few hours of when it is done BUT the last two times, the last two loads have laid in the laundry room until the next time I fold. Yeah so out of like 7 loads (because I’m lazy and only do it every 10-14 days) I folded most of them right?

  11. Ariel

    Dirty laundry is the super villain to my Superhero-ness. And I just made that word up, I think but its Friday and I suffer from a similar complaint of having used up everything by Friday.
    I hate folding laundry.

  12. Kristen

    I was just discussing with Jen that it would be oh so more convenient to just parent from Monday-Thursday so Friday could be the Mother’s Day of Rest.

    Back to those legos. Damn them.

  13. Anne Glamore

    You know I’ve been written up in the paper for not folding the laundry– just washing it and tossing it into labelled baskets. I can’t do all I do and fold and put up laundry, too!

    Occasionally my husband folds while he watches sports and then we all put clothes away and STACK the EMPTY baskets. That’s an exciting day around here!

  14. Megan.

    When I am suddenly and enormously wealthy the FIRST thing I will do is to hire a sock-boy. The entire purpose of his existence will be to match and fold socks – that’s it (although if he wants to be very attractive and have a real thing for vacuuming that’s okay too because I’m generous like that). I’ll pay him well though because nothing sucks like sock folding.

  15. Jenni

    For the most part I love putting away the laundry because I wait so long to actually wash anything that I’ve forgotten what all we have and it’s like Christmas. And everything is extra clean because it sat in the washer too long and I was afraid it smelled funny and washed it twice. Sock matching is much more fun than hanging clothes up because you can sit down.

  16. StephLove

    My favorite part of laundry is when the first load is drying and the second load is washing and I feel all virtuous for moving it along but there is not yet anything to fold.

  17. janet

    cleverly, all the kids have different styles of socks. i just make BIG piles. i gave up matching years ago, so if they want to wear them mismatched, that’s oh-so their problem!

    and tammy? we’re coming over for the bourbon … and, oh, yeah, i guess the waffles too! ;-)

  18. prophet

    “staring into space”. . . .

    I know JUST what you mean. . . . Luckily, I had your ‘burnt-out’ note to stare at first, just so’s I’d have the right thing to think about whilst staring into said space. Otherwise, I might have to think about finishing my dissertation. And I’ve already written today about how I’m going about NOT doing that. . . .

    so you can see you’ve saved my sanity today. Lucky you! (or me? whatever. . . .)

  19. Heidi

    My trick is to put clothes in the dryer and forget to turn it on. Duh…

  20. Sarah

    Murphy’s Law: Everything takes longer than you think. Nothing is as simple as it seems. If anything can go wrong, it will.

    O’Grady’s Law: Murphy’s Law is very optimistic.

  21. Flea

    When I’m enormously wealthy, I’m going to wear sandals and have pedicures every week. And just buy new socks and throw away the dirty ones. Which is one reasons I’m not wealthy.

    Oop! I have laundry that needs to be moved!

  22. ScottsdaleGirl

    Socks are tools of the devil. I wear nothing but open toed shoes. Socks are not my problem. I fling them into a pile on the couch and point at them when one of the males walks by.

    It works for me.

  23. Wendy

    I got tired of matching socks so I bought a box of safety pins and pin my socks together after taking them off and putting in the dirty bin. That alone saves me a lot of time. I am still waiting for the day that I get stabed by one that has come opne in the wash but I am willing to risk it….

  24. Linda Sherwood

    A long time ago I attempted to sort socks. It went like this: I washed the socks, they were sorted into a laundry basket to wait until it was time for me to find a pair of socks, at which point I searched the three baskets of white clothes waiting to be sorted and found my socks to wear.

    Eventually, I gave up pretending. I now sort socks this way: his, mine, the girls, the boy. Once I have these four piles, I place the unpaired socks in a drawer. It is up to the individual to actually match up pairs. My son, age 8, does not even pretend to do this. I’m OK with that.

  25. MaryP

    Six a.m. to midnight?

    Maybe I don’t want to be a writer, after all…

  26. Brigitte

    I lose oodles of time staring into space . . . then Googling “fugue state”, then checking e-mail, then . . oops. Day gone.

  27. dorothy

    I don’t think the clock could move any slower. Which is why I am here – see how that few minutes just whizzed by? thank you!

  28. becky

    i have to go down two flights of stairs and to the other end of our building for laundry. i hate it. even moreso when maybe 1 out of 3 dryers works properly. ah, condo living… how i despise thee!

  29. Daisy

    Laundry. Drat. I thought I could work on schoolwork all weekend. Then again, you’ve reminded me that I need to go to the consignment store. I should do that before laundry so I can wash my new purchases.

  30. Cele

    When I first read about Megan’s sock boy I imagined a cabana boy dressed like the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

    Senility, I swear it’s early senility 8)

  31. Karen

    In my house, each child (11 and 7) receives a laundry basket filled with their (clean) clothes, and it’s up to them to fold the contents and put it away. We’ve been doing this for two years and it works well, with only minimal nagging.

  32. Twisted Cinderella

    After a week at work and all the house stuff, my house is a disasterzone and I am still here blogging and visiting friends. Bad mommy no cookie for you, LOL. I guess I just need a little wasted time.

  33. Flea

    I just put a pile of paired socks on the stairs for the kids to take up. Ugh. That’s the one laundry issue that just doesn’t seem to resolve with kids doing their own laundry. Where’s my cabana boy?!?

  34. Melissa

    Laundry means I get to teach my toddler about colors: “Can you find ANOTHER gray sock?” etc…. and then I get her to match them. This works for about two pairs, leaving the other eleventy-hundred pairs for me. But it’s an improvement from her tossing the clean folded laundry from the sofa to the floor in the interests of “helping” while I take a potty break or answer the phone….

  35. Barb

    Wow! Monkey and Chickadee’s teachers would never make it in my school district! My principal AND his assistant BOTH come by at least once a week to read (thoroughly) the newsletter I am expected to send home each Friday. I am required to keep a copy of these newsletters in a binder on my desk for their viewing pleasure – no kidding. Thankfully I’m a relatively good typist/speller because I heard from some coworkers that this year they have taken to actually editing the newsletters for typos and requiring those teachers who have made mistakes to redo and resend it.

    As for progress reports – see if this little story gives you an idea of how dimly they view any tardiness on the part of the teacher. After the birth of my second son and the resultant 6 week maternity leave I returned to school THREE DAYS before March gradecards were to be sent out. I was expected to have grade cards ready for 18 kindergartners in that three day time span so that my students would take their grade cards home the same day as all other students. Never mind that preparing a K gradecard involves anywhere from 45-60 minutes of one on one time with each child and I was only able to squeeze out 30 minutes (our daily rest period) on the average day! And in case you are wondering, yes I got it done with above the top help from my teaching team.

  36. Jenifer

    Hey you and i have the same storage place for our clean laundry… because half in the dryer and half in a laundry basket is EXACTLY where mine is right now. My downside? The cat was sleeping on top of the clean laundry in the basket so now I have cat hair covered clean laundry. Perfect.

  37. mama speak

    because we couldn’t afford the cabana/sock boy I now use clothes pins to keep socks matched while washing. Irronically, I do NOT wear socks unless it’s POURING outside, which, living in CA is not that often.

    I can get the husband to fold laundry (poorly) while watching TV, but that’s it. I HATE putting away clothes and it’s the part my husband WON’T do. He’ll live out of the basket, unfortunately, my clothes are usually under his.

  38. Sherry

    I also live out of the laundry basket. I have three piled up in my bedroom right now.

    The pairing of the socks is my 7 year old’s responsibility.

  39. David

    Laundry, huh? Being the childless, hermit-y type, I keep it really simple. Dirty clothes go on top of the washer. When the pile is big enough for a load, I do laundry. It’s into the dryer after that, and then a mass unloading on top of the dryer, from whence clothes are plucked as needed. So efficient. Once in a rare moon, I actually do fold my T-shirts. As an odd quirk, I consistently hang my polos on hangars. Go figure. As for sorting and pairing socks? :: dismissive wave:: I just grab any two the same color. (hint: they’re all white. I’m stylish that way.) =P

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