Shave and a Haircut

Sometimes, in an effort to save money, we take on things we have no business messing around with – things best left to trained professionals. We put on our practical “do it yourself” hats and say stupid, fate-tempting things like “How hard could it be?” And then we find out. When temperatures hit 90 degrees last week, I told Tom we’d have to make an appointment to get our dogs, Holly and E.J., shaved for the summer, as we do every year around this time. He agreed, hesitantly, because he knew the trip to the doggie salon for two large dogs usually runs around $150. But there was no question it needed to be done, especially for Holly, who has [...]

Sock It To Me

There’s an old TV commercial for Tootsie Pops featuring a cartoon boy who poses this question to wise Mr. Owl: “How many licks does it take to get to the Tootsie Roll center of a Tootsie Pop?” The owl replies “Let’s find out,” as he takes the little boy’s Tootsie Pop and begins licking and counting aloud. At my house, there’s a similar experiment underway. Adam and Jack are on a quest to find out how many socks it takes to make their mother insane. Last night, they came dangerously close to witnessing a full-blown trip to Crazytown. I know it shouldn’t bother me this much. They’re socks – not landmines. But what started as a pet peeve grew into [...]

Today I Laid an Egg

Parenthood is not a glamorous sport. Often it can be downright humbling. Some days, it sneaks a toe over the line into “humiliating.” Last Sunday was one of those days. We got up early with a mission – get ourselves and the two boys dressed and ready for church. We’d been shamefully absent from Sunday services in the few months since the new baby arrived, and we vowed to do better. So after breakfast and diaper changes, Tom dressed 2-year-old Adam while I dressed the baby. Then I packed his diaper bag with extra changes of clothes for both kids, so I’d be prepared for a leaky diaper or spilled drink. After all, a smart mother has to plan ahead [...]

Out, Out Damn Spot

Most men don’t fully understand this, but sometimes a woman walks into a room in her house and knows, with certainty, that something has GOT to change. It happened to me when I walked into the guest room and realized I was sick of the varying degrees of beige in there. It felt dull, lifeless. So I chose a color, and Tom painted the room a cool, airy blue that I love. But repainting triggered a chain of redecorating events. The old bedspread didn’t go with the new blue, so I switched it out with one that does. Then the peeling finish on the nightstands screamed for attention. I started repainting the nightstands after Tom left for a business trip. [...]