Sunday, September 04, 2005

Butt monkey

Yesterday morning my abnormal, freak children were up at 5:30 in the morning. They don't even have to get up that early on a school day! I will be so glad when they learn to appreciate the fine art of sleeping in on a weekend. I managed to stay in bed till 7:30. Why I did I'm not quite sure because I sure didn't sleep - I was too busy listening to the screams, arguments, squeals, squawks and thumps. When the threat of a bloody, gruesome murder finally resonated down the hall, I got up. And I beat the children. Okay, no I didn't, but the thought crossed my mind.

I made a big breakfast and also a big thing of tuna salad and a ginormous jug of sweet tea. Paul got up as his last egg went into the pan. By that time the kids were done eating so I sent them off to make beds, brush teeth and get dressed while we ate. I did some minor cleaning up of the kitchen, but time was getting away from me so I left most of it. I had gone to sleep the night before with wet hair and so I looked like a young Phyllis Diller. But Phyllis Diller never learned how to use a 'do rag properly. I have. I can cover up the worst hair with a rag and look megacool. Or at least like a she-pirate.

Paul put the cooler in my van, loaded the kids' bikes as well, hopped on his motorcycle and waited while the kids and I loaded up. We opened the "wings" on the van (which makes the kids get all excited because they say with the wings open the van can fly) and rolled down the windows because until the price of gas drops we aren't using the AC. Now, one might think we were headed to some place fun - like the lake or the beach or a park. But no. We went to Bub and Sis' farmette.

Have I ever mentioned that I hate to sweat? Have I also ever mentioned that I abhor any kind of construction/remodelling/repair work of any kind? I'll go hang out at the shop during derby season and watch the guys fool around with the cars. I'll be their little errand girl and fetch them filters and oil and plugs and Sonic drinks and be perfectly happy with that. But if you make me go to an unfinished house and like, nail things and cut things and hammer things you will only encounter a very cranky, whiney, pouty and just plain nasty me. This is Sis and Bub's second total home makeover without camera crews and famous people. I wasn't involved in the first one and I am not all that happy about being involved with this one. If they ever buy another home to fix up, I will divorce them and move to Siberia.

Up until now I have always been the resident childcare provider/cook/port in the storm kind of person. I take all of the children to my house and love them, play with them, do crafts with them, give them nutritious snacks and let them watch cool movies. It's what I do. I also have a meal waiting on the house crew at the end of the day. I'd much rather be out the energy and expense of the aforementioned activities then to ever take a hammer in my hand and *gasp* nail something. But it seems that now our children are fairly self-sufficient. And they don't need the smothering supervision that I am so good at. They pretty much do their own thing; they know their limits and they obey them.

So I had to go play with the big kids yesterday. And I really wanted to help out. I mean, Mom and Sis came out to my house two days after Christmas and helped me paint four rooms in my house. It's a co-op type thing and we're all glad to help each other. And when it's time to paint their house I'll be there and be happy about it. But yesterday they were doing things like running metal around all the baseboards, putting up wallboard, repairing sheetrock, mudding and taping and sanding sheetrock and I JUST DON'T LIKE DOING STUFF LIKE THAT. It was hot. It was dusty. It was spider-y. Mom told me to sweep out the bathroom/utility room and handed me a broom that I'm pretty sure came over on the Mayflower. I quickly gave up the sweeping and broke out the ShopVac. It didn't suck. Which sucked. So then I spent the next hour standing around watching everyone else who actually posessed talent DO something.

Bub ran metal sheeting around all of the baseboards. Evidently Bub and Sis actually DO something to keep the mice out of their house. How novel. I say it's wise. Paul says it's "just like them city folks". I guess he thinks fine country living must involve rodents.

Finally Sis said, "Come on. I've got something for you to do," and handed me a paint roller and a paint tray full of Kilz. And the paint roller was on a long stick. Ooh! I'd never done that! I'm always the one that gets to use the little paint brush and go around the windows. I freakin' ROCKED with the roller on a stick thingy. Sis hollered into the others "Hey everyone!! Kristin has a talent!" Mom hollered back, "It's about time!"

But eventually we ran out of walls to Kilz. I was bored once more. I was just pretty much walking through the house bugging everybody. Sis had just told me that morning about one of her favorite talk radio personalities using the term "But Monkey" when someone makes a statement then follows it with "but...". Like "She's a pretty girl, but . . . she's just so fat." Sis said at one point, "Gosh, you look miserable." I said, "Yeah. Pretty much." She said, "Well, if it helps I love you." I said, "I love you, too, but . . . " She said, "Hey no using But Monkeys on 'I love you'! That's no place for a But Monkey!" But tell me, is there really ever a good place for a But Monkey?

After lunch everyone got busy again.

Paul patched a hole in the sheetrock in TotOne's room.

Mom measured a closet.

Sis wouldn't let me take a picture of her.

I just walked around taking pictures of everyone.

Around 2:30, after I had come in the house after making the kids do push-ups as punishment for fighting, Sis said, "Can you just watch the kids tomorrow?" Even as my heart swelled at the thought I said, "No...I want to help with the house!" Mom came out of the closet she was still measuring and said, "Really. Just keep the kids tomorrow, okay?"


Finally at 3:30 I had had enough. I told the kids to load up and I took them back to my house. We had called a sitter earlier in the day and we grownups were going to see The 40-year-old Virgin. Again. Well, Paul and Mom hadn't seen it yet. So I took five very dirty, sweaty, tired kids home and gave them all showers and then settled them in to watch A Bug's Life on Disney.

I loaded the dishwasher and then set a timer and sat down for about 15 minutes. I guess I kind of dozed off. Oops. I woke up when I heard a clap of thunder followed by the rumble of Paul's bike. A storm was rolling in, and fast. So since he was home, I let him take a shower first. I kind of dozed off again. Oops. Then I took a shower, fixed the kids dinner and grabbed a bite myself. When Mom, Bub and Sis got here they all ate while I finished getting ready. By that time Meggie was here and we all headed out in the pouring rain.

And where did we go but freakin' Lowe's freakin' Home Improvement freakin' Warehouse.

I wanted to shove unsharpened pencils into my very allergy-ridden eyeballs.

For over an hour we walked around that horrible place and looked at trim, paint samples, knobs, hinges, Sawzall blades, hammers, bathtubs, and I'm sure there was more, but my eyes kept glazing over.

The only thing good that happened at Lowe's was that Paul tried to flirt with me. I guess he was feeling a little high from the smell of sawdust, metal tools and insulation, I dunno. I guess it could be comparable to the high I feel when I walk into the mall. He had grabbed my hand and was actually holding it in public. He was chatting and smiling and I was starting to get worried that the Pod People had finally taken over and they were targeting rednecks in the Midwest.

We saw the movie and again, I laughed so hard I cried all of my eye makeup off. I am so buying that one. After the show we went to Grand Lake Casino. I won $30 and split it with Paul with the condition that he invest it wisely and then split his winnings with me. He lost every penny. Then we visited the Turtle who also took our money and didn't even apologize. Stupid turtle.

The freak children were up again before 6 this morning. Except there were five of them up and making noise today. So I was forced to get up. Even though I had only gotten to bed at 3. I think I'll put in something like Gone With the Wind or The North and the South this afternoon for the kids to watch. Or maybe the Lonesome Dove series. An measley hour and twenty minute Disney movie ain't gonna cut it today.


~ A P R I L ~ said...

awe your husband likes you, he wants to kiss you, he wants to hold your hand.... he wants to ....... nevermind.

I think I'll go bleach my brain, oh, the visions!

You do realize, Fitty is taking notes, I'm positive you know this. Now he'll want you to smell that good for him too!

Anonymous said...

Now Diva, there can actually be some sense of accomplishment in home remodeling and repairs. I've just recently taken up the hammer myself. I love Home Depot and Lowe's. The smell of raw lumber makes me wanna snuggle with my hubby. It's an illness, I know.

But after years of being the "girly girl," I have found a sense of power from the big boy toys. Of course I only found this out because Hubby kept promising me for three years to fix a gaping hole under the sink, and had even bought the stuff to do it with,but just had never finished it. So, I grabbed a saw and hammer myself. Beautiful. Did he notice? Nope. I had to point out my work of art.

So yesterday, I spent the day painting one of the spare bedrooms (jungle theme for the grand kids, henceforth known as the 'monkey room,') and building a shelf and putting up crown molding etc.

Maybe this is a trade off. We found out a few years ago that hubby is a much better cook than I. So I guess, I can do home repairs/remodeling as long as he keeps cooking.

Slip the kids some tylenol p.m. or cold medicine tonight so you can sleep in tomorrow...

Just kidding.

Hillbilly Mom said...

Oooohhhhh. I HATE Lowe's. I think I will die of boredom and someone will build a nice bench right over me. We remodeled my
$17,900 house into a $35,000 house right after we got married. Then we started building a NEW house on our 10 acres. No, not hiring a contractor. Building. Like with HH's ex-con friend Tony and 3 of his buddies framing it and getting it under roof in about 3 days, then HH doing the rest of it in about 6 months.

Oh, how I hate Lowe's. The only thing worse that Lowe's is Hood's, which is like a dirtier, cheaper, Lowe's that we have around here. And the only thing worse than a trip to Hood's is a trip to Hood's with two young boys, HH's first kids, who I was expected to entertain during the neverending shopping trips. Good thing they liked me better than him, and minded me. It's amazing how good kids can be if you promise them a quarter for the machine up front when we check out.

Queen Of Cheese said...

Can I come over when the kids watch North/South and Gone With The Wind? I even have Scarlett on DVD. Can I? Can I? PUHHLEAZE????? OK FINE! I'll just go to my room and watch them by myself. Now that I think about it, it's a better deal anyway. Unless your fixing dinner, then I'm on my way!

Redneck Diva said...

April - It wasn't that Mr. Diva likes me, he was just horny. I've been married to him too long to think otherwise.

Cissy - I fully appreciate the sense of accomplishment in a completed home improvement project. I like to accomplish things as well - but home improvement just gives me a slow pain in my ass. I'll clean, I'll paint, I'll even give you the money to buy pretty things to decorate my house with, but don't make hammer anything.

I'm a girly-girl, too, but for some reason hanging out in a greasy, dirty garage just gets me. I used to love hanging out in my Papa's shop and even Dad's when I was a kid. The smell of exhuast, grease and motor oil...yeah, baby.

Monkey room - how cute!! Take pictures!! I wanna see!

HillbillyMom - Mr. Diva and I remodeled a kitchen in our first home (our rent house now) - we nearly divorced. We have nearly killed each other over the playhouse. We yelled and cussed each other quite loudly when we painted bedrooms last winter. We've only found a few things we can do amicably - paddle a canoe, work on a car and put up a pool. This is after nearly 13 years. We're hoping that eventually we can get to where watching TV doesn't spawn a fight, lol.

Lowe's sucks.

Mrs. Coach - Here's an idea - you just come over and GET the kids and let them watch the videos at your house. I have them all again today. Any time is fine to come get them. You don't even have to call first. :D

We....the people

Originally published in The Miami News-Record, July 2020 Everything is different now. I’m not just talking about masks and social distancing...