Archive | 11:59 PM

I Should Have Known Better

22 Dec

Relatives coming to town should be a joyous occasion. You should be excited for their arrival. Excited.

But, no.  Stress … Stress is what consumed my Guat mind and body. The mental and emotional strain infested my being as project sister-coming-to-town was initiated.

7:00 A.M. Mother comes in and announces that sister is coming to town.

7:01 A.M. I know this already as my sister, A.K.A. Queen of the Nile, informed me that I was to pick her up promptly at 7:00 P.M. Promptly.



I had my day planned out already. The entire day revolved around her arrival and making sure she wouldn’t sass me if I arrived late for any reason. On time. I needed to be on time and leave the house presentable for her. My whole mission was to avoid the older sister attitude. Does that ever happen to anybody else? You spend the whole day trying to prevent a hostile situation because you know it’ll burn  you out. Plus it adds to your gray hair. Yeah that was my mission. Prevent hostile Queen of the Nile encounter.

I tried to give myself a two-to-three hour window to clean the place. Baby’s nap time … that’s when operation Mop&Glo-Comet-Simple Green would commence. My son would work on his puzzles, monster trucks, or Curious George computer adventures, while I swept, vacuumed, mopped, washed, and scrubbed.

But prior to all this domesticated fun and games, I was to go to the cemetery and decorate my dad’s site with ornaments and a mini tree — you know bring a little Christmas spirit his way, this would be followed by a trip to the post office to mail off my Christmas-Happy New Year’s cards to my local buddies, then it would be off to the park to hang out in the sandbox and catch some seesaw, slides action, then back home for lunch.

But I should have known better. I really should have.

8:01 A.M. As I roll out of bed I find clean laundry, which I had folded the night before, evenly distributed between the floor pile, the top-of the dresser pile, the mix-it-up with the dirty hamper pile, and the under-the-bed pile.

Needless to say I was a little burned out that my late night efforts to fold all my clothes, my son’s clothes and my daughter’s clothes would be effected by my mom “watching” my one year old while I slept an extra thirty minutes.

Mom left to work, I exhaled loudly and began tackling the hurricane of clothes once again, but the kids didn’t mind as they got an hour of Saturday morning cartoons under their belt. After a late breakfast, I rushed out the door.

10:20 A.M. On my way to the cemetery my mom informs me that she can not make a wholesale delivery, because she doesn’t want to leave the store. The store wouldn’t be unattended. She had three workers there. She just didn’t want to leave her supervisory role at the time. I needed to drive forty minutes to the shop, pick up the chicken and drive it over to the restaurant to drop it off.

What time?

Yeah .. the baby’s nap time. She’s aware of the kids’ schedule. She’s aware of how sleep deprived I am and how when the baby actually decides to listen to me during the day and take a nap I feel victorious. I feel Woo-hoo! It’s a time when I get to eat lunch, clean up the tsunami of toys sprawled across the floor, wash dishes, play with my son, or perhaps even take a shower if my son decides to take a nap. Nap time is a cherished event for all worn-out defeated parents. And those of you who rob of us this luxury should really be penalized in some form. I don’t care who you are, you should suffer some consequence.

But this did not happen.

So I shortened my stay at the cemetery, picked up my cards at the stationery store, did not address them or deliver them, and reluctantly picked up a sandwich and french fries from the deli so the kids could eat lunch in the car (never a good idea as bread crumbs and parts of mayonnaise, salami and french fries always find their way to the floor mats, back seats, and nooks and crannies of the car).

12:25 P.M. Usually nap time. But drove to the shop.

1:05 P.M. Arrived in a salami and mayonnaise smelling vehicle.

1:10 P.M. Left with 30 pounds of chicken to be delivered.

1:35 P.M. Daughter, in a cranky mood for the last ten minutes, finally falls asleep. Get to the restaurant, make the delivery, and head back home.

2:10 P.M. Arrive home. Try to sneakily take baby out of her car seat and continue the napping experience, but failed as the neighbor’s dog begins to bark. I take her inside and try to put her back to sleep for the next fifteen minutes … denied. She’s up and running.

2:25 P.M. Could really use some chocolate right about now.

2:26 P.M. Try and begin Operation Mop&Glo-Comet-Simple Green on the first floor. It’s hard to do while carrying a baby in your arms, but I think my biceps are getting up to body-builder status.

2:30 P.M. They want a snack. Fruit. We ran out of fruit. But they want fruit. But we don’t have any. But they want it. Field trip to the grocery store.

3:30 P.M. Baby falls asleep in the car again. No fruit for her. I take her out successfully and put her in the crib. I fix my son a snack and commence the cleaning phase.

4:00 P.M. Baby wakes up.

4:01 P.M. Dizzy from all the cleaning, I decide it’s time to go to the post office, and drop off the cards before they close at five.

4:20 P.M. Arrive at post office. It closes at four on Saturdays. I should have known. I exhale and mail the cards anyway.

4:40 P.M. Return home.  I begin emptying out the car so that my sister, Queen of the Nile, isn’t burned out from the toy clutter.  But according to my son, it’s family play time so I need to go inside.

5:20 P.M. My dude comes home from work and just as I am informing him that he needs to assist me during the Comet phase of this operation. My mom calls. Says she has run out of chicken. Can my dude go get chicken from the distributor, before they close at six, and then drive all the way over to the shop to deliver it.

I remind her that Queen of the Nile arrives at 7:00 P.M. and that she gets a little hostile when people are not on time. I remind her that I can’t take the kids with me, because my sister and her family have brought six ginormous suitcases. She reminds me that they’ve run out of chicken and that she’s pretty hostile.  He leaves, kids finish dinner, then watch some Nickelodeon while I continue my cleaning project.

As the clock winds down, I feel like one of those Price Is Right contestants scrambling to finish before time runs out, only I don’t get prize.

Tick-tock. Tick-tock. Tick-tock.

6:57 p.m. He returns.

6:57 p.m. I’m out the door.

I’m lucky that baggage claim takes forever. I’m lucky we only live fifteen minutes away from the airport.

7:18 p.m. I pull into the airport, she’s standing outside with her entourage and baggage. I eat a piece of chocolate, take a deep breath, and open the door.

She’s not smiling, but she’s not hostile either.