Tuesday, September 14, 2010

A few observations

Today I will make a few observations:

First Observation
Those mothers who are all "Yay! Rah!" about the first day of school, the ones who wait all summer for it to happen so they can get their kids back on the school schedule, the ones who feel celebratory when the bus drives up... THOSE moms must be morning people. I am not a morning person. The school year is literally killing me.

Second Observation
6' 1" is a very nice height for a young man to be. David is 6' 1", and sometimes I think he might feel just the littlest bit short, because Shannon is also 6' 1", Shawn is 6' 2", and Jonathan is 6' 3". But I think David is a very good height for a young man: nice and tall, while still readily able to find ready-to-wear clothing on the racks of most department stores. This is a good thing.

Third Observation
When we put in our current internet service, it was connected to our cable TV service. We have a bottom-basement cable package that enables us to get only 14 channels for something like $13 per month. Before the world switched to whatever it is that forces everyone to either get cable or buy some sort of interpreter box, my only motivation for getting cable was to cut down on the technological paraphernalia sticking out of my TV set. But I digress. The point I am trying to arrive at is this: we did not get enough channels to enable our internet service to work. Having never taken physics, I do not understand this, but it has to do with the bandwidth on our signal (I think). Anyhow, in order to actually hook up our internet, they had to give us some rogue channels, one of which is ESPN... kind of. And by "kind of", I mean that ESPN comes in black and white with no sound.

Now this is perfect, as far as I am concerned. We can watch Monday night football again, like we did before it went onto ESPN, but now it is blessedly SILENT. Also, the picture is just as good as the pictures on my parents' old black and white TVs that we used to have when I was growing up, so there is a sense of sweet nostalgia. Last night we had a cozy family time on the sectional in front of Monday night football, silent, in black and white. There was conversation, and homework got done, and Shawn poked away at work on his laptop, and I curled up with a massive volume of P.G Wodehouse and a cup of tea, and read while keeping a lookout for sightings of Michael Oher. Bliss.

Fourth Observation
Yesterday I stayed off the computer except for about 5 minutes when I checked my email because Shawn told me (in a phone conversation) to look for something in particular. I stayed comepletely off the computer and did not visit Facebook even once, and yet I had an epically unproductive day. This is very discouraging to me. I hope I get past the jet lag that strikes me when the school schedule swings into gear. I am dying. Fibromyalgia is my nemesis. At one point yesterday, I just ached through and through... head, neck, joints, legs, and my eyes were as heavy as grocery bags with gallons of milk in them. Finally I staggered to the sectional in the family room and laid down with a blanket. This was, of course, the highlight of the day for the dogs. I was on my back with my knees up. Piper occupied my stomach, and Schubert slept on my feet. I kept telling myself, "Got... to... get... up...got... to ... get... something... done..." I felt like I had a 200 lb. weight spread across my entire body (of course, that might have been the dogs...). It was a chore to draw a breath. Finally, something changed, and I felt empowered to open my eyes and sit up. I thought it must be about 11 .a.m. It was 1:22 p.m.

Augh. I had approximately one hour and 20 minutes to get things done before Jonny would arrive home. I tried to spring into action, but it was more like a slow, painful lurch. I got some laundry switched over, tidied the kitchen, made the beds, folded the clothes, pulled a chunk of ground beef out of the freezer so I could make spaghetti for supper, and worked on the drain in the kids' shower (which is giving me fits). I am afraid that I am the laziest woman on the face of the earth. And that was a day with no computer. Sigh.


Hope T. said...

Dear Ruth,
I am sorry you are having a tough time. I don't think you mentioned the fibromyalgia before. I can't even imagine trying to keep up with a busy household while managing that condition.
I have to admit that this year, for the first time ever, I was one of those "Yay! Rah-rah!" mothers. I still have two boys at home but having three at school is bliss after a very difficult summer. BUT I am not a morning person. So far, it has been fine because it is sunny at 6:30am but I don't know what I will do when it is dark at that time. I make the kids breakfast but I am having them pack their own lunches. At some point, I am hoping they will be completely independent in the morning.
My son is also 6'1" but I know he does not feel short since he is currently the tallest in the family. My next two boys are on track to be taller than that but it will be a while yet! I wonder how tall you are, Ruth. I am 5'8" and my husband is 6' exactly. I have always felt awkwardly tall and I still have trouble getting clothes with sleeves and pants legs that fit properly.
Finally, you could not be the laziest woman on earth because I am sure that title goes to me. You could have the honor of second laziest if you really wanted it but with all you mention accomplishing on one of your slower days, I doubt that the title is really fitting.

ruth said...

Hi Hope,

You asked how tall I am. I think I am 5'6". My younger daughter is 5'9". We are the shortest ones in our family.

My daughters enjoy being tall. Actually, Lulu was disappointed that she didn't make it to 5"10--that was her goal.

It can be hard to find clothes that fit. I can't get much at Penney's or Kohl's. The Land's End clothes at Sears sometimes work.

For my girls, there is a store called Vanity. It is not in NY, but when we got to visit family in MN, we stock up. They have jeans with inseams up to 37", although 35" seems to be their favorite length.

Lulu can get pants in a Long at American Eagle, and they are long enough for her. H&M also tends to have longer pants legs, especially in smaller sizes, which is a particularly difficult combination to find. I am a 4Long, and those are rare in these parts. Sometimes I dress more trendily than I am in my heart, only because those are the only clothes I can find that fit. I have better luck finding pants in my size at H&M or in teen stores, and I have noticed that teen tops often seem to have longer sleeves, too. Sometimes I feel really stupid in teen clothing at age 44, but I try to find the most conservative things I can. The girls and I have mostly jeans, because dress pants are so hard to find in sizes that are long enough.

My next goal (which may be as illusive as my goal to organize the laundry room) is to learn to sew on knits. I did some of this at one time, and was pleased with the results. I would like to sew long sleeved T-shirts and things like that for Shannon and me. I think it would be good to have a serger to do this, but I hate to make the investment in a serger until I know that I could make it pay off. Such a dilemma!

Hope T. said...

I had to look up H & M. That store is not in this area. We are behind the trends here.
I get my clothes at consignment shops. I have just recently started to dress a little more "with it". Before that I wore jumpers a lot and hand-me-down corduroys and turtlenecks. Some people didn't appreciate my "style" or lack of style. Now I wear those crazy low-rise pants/jeans but I probably look normal to other people. There seems to be a general sentiment against middle-aged women (and men, for that matter) dressing accordingly. I personally like the dresses that June Cleaver wore in "Leave It To Beaver".
I admire anyone with the ability to sew. It is not that I have ever even tried to learn but it just seems so difficult.
I hope you are able to get your laundry room done. We mothers spend lots of time there. I have my machines in the little powder room so I guess the advantage of not having a laundry room is that I don't have to organize it. I do have a few shelves above the machines and I would like to throw out some of the cleaning products that my mother-in-law put up there five years ago (!) but I never seem to get around to it. I have thought of trying flylady because then small projects like that would get done. But I seem to be too much of a perfectionist (albeit a lazy one)to do her program.

Ruth said...

Most of my sewing in the last years has been halloween costumes. The fun part of that is you get to make up your own patterns, and also, they aren't fussy, and they only really have to hold together for one night. When the kids were little, I sewed some nice stuff, with french seams and everything. As I have been getting old pictures out for graduation party memory boards, I've been surprised to see how much I actually did used to sew. My husband made a rule against it, because it made me crabby. It is really stressful to have a lot of needles and pins floating around in a room with toddlers and babies, and stress makes me cross.

Fly Lady. Ha! I tried that... kind of. I am too rebellious, and also I am bad at computers, and I could never figure out what I was supposed to do to get on her system, proper.

I am not so much of a perfectionist as a guilt monger. I constantly feel guilty. If I am vacuuming, I feel like I should be sorting clothes, and if I am doing laundry, I feel like I should be grocery shopping, and if I am cooking, I feel like I ought to be sorting the mail and dealing with the medical bills. Since I always feel guilty, I default to the computer and get nothing done at all. Why not, I guess, if I'm just going to feel guilty anyway?