All of Us

All of Us

Friday, December 17, 2004

Holiday Events and Irritations

It's been a busy few weeks. I (foolishly or kindly, depending on what your perspective is) agreed to let D. invite his students/coworkers over last weekend for a holiday party. Kind of a lot considering we had a 3 week old baby. I hired someone to clean, and we did potluck. We bought some meat to grill and 2 already prepared side dishes. D. did the shopping and most of the cleanup.

We put our tree up, and deviated from tradition by not cutting out own, but buying one from a lot. I stayed home with A. as it was raining (and I was dying for a few minutes alone--it didn't take them nearly long enough! lol). D. said they scared away the nice men from the Lions Club who approached them as they were getting out of the van. He had 2 crying children (one thought she was being accidentally left in the van), 2 pouting children (they were mad that we weren't cutting our own tree), and 1 child complaining loudly "These trees are PUNY!" Only the oldest, D., was behaving normally. I had no idea we'd created such strong traditions. The next morning D helped them put the lights on, and then we put ornaments on. Normally I unwrap, put hooks on and hand out ornaments, but I was nursing A., so I told them to go ahead. The idea that we were doing it differently was not well received, and neither was the fact that D. left for the store at that point to go buy party supplies. He doesn't normally help with ornaments anyway, but he is usually on the premises. Once A. was done eating, I handed out ornaments as always.

The party went well--delicious food (we asked people to bring ethnic or holiday favorites) the house looked festive and our kids were really well behaved.

I ended up with a sore spot/plugged duct after the party anyway, even though I was still taking antibiotics from the previous bout of mastitis, but at least it didn't progress into full blown mastitis again.

Midweek D invited an out of town colleague to dinner at our house. I made a nice pasta and we had a good time. He is a nice man that enjoys our kids. His children are grown and his wife had early onset Alzheimer's and is now in an advanced stage of the illness, totally noncommunicative and requiring constant care, living in a nursing home, so I think it's nice for him to spend some time with a family.

Yesterday I spent most of the day ordering last minute gifts, shopping for teacher presents and taking J shopping for her friends. Last night was my book club meeting. I left at 7pm with 2 simple requests: Please have one of the kids sprinkle sidewalk salt on the path to the car since it hasn't been shoveled and is slippery (it is a small slope) and I will be carrying a baby and please bring in the 3 packages that arrived so that the dogs don't chew them up. I also instructed L to take out a garbage bag from the diaper pail and I was supposed to be completing her dinner chore of loading the dishwasher (she'd already been asked about 5 times).

When I arrived home several hours later this is the scene that greeted me: Darkness (although I always turn the lights on for D he never remembers to turn them on for me), the path is not salted or shoveled, the packages are still on the porch, the garbage bag of diapers is still in the house but has been ripped up by our 2 dogs and dirty ripped open half eaten diapers are all over the carpet, dishes aren't done.

I was very upset. Apparently D went to bed before the older kids and the dogs did the damage after he went to bed. The older kids put the dogs outside but didn't clean up the mess. I couldn't clean the mess because A was very fussy and needed to lay down and nurse to sleep. When I awoke this morning, although D and J and young D had been up for 45 minutes and eaten breakfast in the room with the mess, they hadn't cleaned it. Since J had missed the bus (2nd day in a row) and was waiting for D to shower and take her to school on his way to work, I made her clean it up. I woke up L and I to help her and to give I time to finish the dishes. When K awoke this morning I discovered he'd been put to bed with marker all over his hands, feet and face, not washed off. He'd also made some marks on the wood floor.

Are you picking up on my feeling that I do a lot for others but get nothing in return? Spent most of today feeling sorry for myself. Tomorrow is D's extended family holiday gathering. We are supposed to bring a dish to pass so I told him to think of something, buy it and cook it or get a bag of chips, but I'm not doing it. I don't even really feel like going--I'll probably end up with mastitis again.

1 comment:

thicket dweller said...

I SO know how you feel. I admire you for not waking them all up and making them take care of it that very minute, which is what *I* would have done. God bless you!

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SE Michigan, United States
Mother to 10 fabulous kids, ages 4 to 21 years! Married for 26 years to my best friend.


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