First…Three’s a Herd went over three hundred followers yesterday!!!!!! I know that probably isn’t overly impressive to you super-bloggers (whom I sincerely wish to emulate someday!), but it means a ton to my little corner of the world. Thank you followers!! You made my day yesterday.
Second, remember that post -aka rant – a couple months back about wanting to go on strike? Yeah, that. I came downstairs this morning, already tired and a little overwhelmed, to the disaster frequently known as my kitchen, and a family room I can’t vacuum without spending twenty minutes clearing floor space and not one empty surface to sit on. The dog contributed by carrying, and then dropping in random places, no less than three socks and one pair of underwear. Well-known fact to most women, but little known fact to most everyone else, even after a partial hysterectomy, you can still PMS with the best of them. Zero to mom-rage in five seconds flat. Then Little Man had the misfortune of having a meltdown over half his french toast sticks getting stuck in the toaster. I didn’t yell. But I wouldn’t get the stuck portion out until he calmed down and asked for help. It was a close thing. I just felt the pressure building, the stress increasing, the walls of responsibility closing in.
As I started out for my run, I mentally listed all the things I need to get done this week. The longer the list grew, the more angry I became. I felt these rules hanging over my head, the imagined rules and expectations for moms who do not work outside the home. It kind of goes along with that infamous question most of us get every evening, “So, what did you do today?” which rubs against the grain anyways, much less when asked with a raised eyebrow while staring at dishes in the sink, a pizza box on the counter, and laundry piles teetering on the back of the couch. Here are the rules for stay-at-home-moms, apparently:
- The house must always be clean and uncluttered.
- There should never be crumbs, dirt, water, or oil (from the pan the large dog pulled off the stove) on the kitchen floor.
- There should never be dog hair on the wood floor. There should, in particular, never be enough dog hair on the wood floor to create a whole new dog.
- The house must NOT be in disrepair in any way, and it is preferred to look as if no children reside there, except for the exceptional artwork of those exceptional children, and beautifully framed, strategically placed professional photos of said children.
- There must never be any dishes in the sink, on the counter, and certainly not on the family room floor (nor the backyard, courtesy of the large dog).
- Laundry must be sorted, folded, hung and put away, preferably within moments of the singing dryer notifying you it is finished with its cycle. Laundry should never sit for days on the family room sofa, waiting for those beautiful children to collect and put away in the appropriate places in their rooms. “Appropriate places” do not include: bedroom floors, underneath beds, nor behind closet doors.
- The fridge, pantry and freezer should always have the particular favorites of everyone in the household.
- Meals should meet everyone’s dietary needs, as well as satisfy the quirks of no less than two picky eaters. Meals should also be cooked from scratch, gourmet, fully organic (preferably pulled from the garden in the backyard, which no, does not look like a jungle in the least, dear husband), and cover all the healthy food groups, in appropriate portions. It is also preferred there never be any “leftovers” from which anyone other than mom will have to partake.
- Don’t ever hire anyone to help with the house, laundry, cooking or cleaning. You’re home all day. Why would you need any help with any of that?
- Balance the budget and checkbook, weekly. Never, ever go over budget.
- Volunteer at the kids’ schools for every event, classroom project, fundraiser, and field trip.
- Don’t ever forget, much less miss, any awards ceremony, luncheon, portfolio night, information meeting, performance, academic bowl, Greek Olympics, or Renaissance Faire.
- Duly photograph and scrapbook, within six months, every family vacation, holiday, birthday, sporting event.
- Never, ever take anything store bought to a party. Always make an appetizer, side, salad, or dessert from scratch. See Pinterest for ideas and execute as pictured.
- Make sure you get involved in the community! We must give back, right?
- Do something creative, especially if you can sell it on Etsy.
- Hair, nails, and makeup should always be done, but be understated.
- Always shower, dress, full hair and makeup before picking up the kids from school.
- The children should never be late to, nor miss, any practice, rehearsal, class, or appointment. You’re home, you have time for all of that, right?
- Exercise, ladies! You stay home – you have time to work out constantly and stay in the same shape you were before kids!
- Remember all friends’ and family members’ birthdays and get those hand-made cards and gifts mailed on time.
- Make sure the children are always dressed in weather appropriate, neat, clean, color-coordinated outfits, even when the youngest one refuses to wear anything but sweatpants.
- Conserve water, recycle, don’t use plastic of any kind, always take your own re-usable shopping bags with you whether shopping for food, cleaning supplies, or clothes.
Did I miss anything? I state this all facetiously and with sarcasm. I’m not that bitter, truly. If I were, I’d be entirely more worried about myself. Hah!