School Days: Domestic Rituals I Despise

It took me long enough to become domesticated. For most of my 14-year marriage, washing dishes, doing laundry, and cleaning toilets were not top priorities. Not that I am a slob or completely oblivious to my family’s needs. But, let’s face it. I would rather romance my husband, play with my children, help out at school, write my blog posts, train for 5ks, socialize with my lady friends, read, and shop. In the end, these are the priorities that give me the greatest pay-off.

So, there are domestic rituals I despise; and will put off until my kids scream bloody murder and my husband booby-traps my writer’s chair. These must-dos are pure evil. No woman I call friend should ever have to endure the black magic swirling above when these duties are imminent.

1. Getting kids dressed for school. Issa is a diva who could care less. She barely looks at my suggestions the night before and moves at a turtle-pace to the task. Then, there’s Riff. He just entered kindergarten and the particular phase. He insists on wearing one of two favorite shirts and refuses to wear a jacket when it’s cold and raining outside.

2. Making lunches. I was fine with this the first week of school. The weekend prior, I  stocked the pantry and fridge with their favorites. Now, I try to stretch what I have for two weeks before the next major grocery excursion. For one thing, I hate grocery shopping. It’s boring, fellow shoppers lollygag, and I would rather spend the money on something fun like shoes. Another thing. Making lunches is the last item on my daily chore list before I am free to watch TV, read or catch up on Facebook with a glass of Garnacha. Sometimes, the lure of watching Once Upon a Time or re-reading Fifty Shades for the fortieth time is too much.

3. Bath night. I love sweet-smelling kids. But, mine fight me while my husband watches television and ignores their need for cleanliness. They don’t start moving for the bathroom until I threaten a spray-down in the backyard. Once they’re in, they don’t want out. They both claim a need to practice holding their breath under water. Go figure.

4. Cleaning out the fridge. I push my people to eat leftovers in a timely manner. The creation of unknown formations is never my intent. But, on occasion there is an ugly that appears in the rear that catches me off-guard. So, for the sake of my children, I hold my breath — until I turn purple — and purge without discrimination.

5. Weeding. My husband seems to think weed barriers will keep all ugliness out of our flower beds. I don’t know what gardening class he took. But, weeds invade and cling to whatever patch of soil they seek to claim. They don’t go unless evicted with vicious, continuous, strategic.

A Summer Preview: Coming to My Backyard in 13 Days

Buddy is the king.

Last night, we set the mood. Structured schedules were tossed to the recycle bin. Issa, Riff, Buddy (our Pekingese) and I played in the backyard until our tummies rumbled for burgers, fries and lemonade. Dinner wasn’t served until 7-something.

Riff is my music man. He sings and dances to just about anything.

School is out for a couple extra days to enable families to celebrate Memorial Day properly. But, it is also a preview for parents and caregivers of what is coming to our backyards, parks, beaches, malls, amusement parks, etc., etc, in a mere 13 days.

Issa was too busy to be photographed this afternoon. She was busy prepping and plotting  our garden. Our next-door neighbors were deciding on their veggie plant choices as well. Both of us are giving pumpkins ago.

Before I leave you for a weekend of lazy beach living, I wanted to direct you to some sites that might help with crafting some refreshing and/or savory treats for your long weekend  fiestas. These bloggers always leave my mouth watering. Some day, I’m going in my kitchen to try and replicate what they make so easy. In the meantime, why don’t you get an apron on and get busy?

Afternoon Popcorn Snack – her watermelon and fresh basil margarita, hill country salsa  and DJ’s spicy grilled red dirt chicken all have me drooling while I type.

Rantings of an Amateur Chef – check out his recipes for shrimp and tomato summer salad, grilled pork tenderloin, and grilled stuffed jalapenos)

Vivek’s Eipcurean Adventures – I need to spend more time at this guy’s site. Don’t you agree? My kids don’t complain about my grilled cheese sandwiches. But, this guy has me beat. His Mozzarella en Carozza has me making a list for my next trip to my local Italian grocer, Vince and Joe’s.

A Muse in My Kitchen – Her pictures say it all.

This Italian Family -I probably don’t need to admit this. Italian food is my absolute favorite. Could it be something to do with my DNA? Who knows? Her meatball bubble biscuits and little lasagnas look like ideal, kid-friendly finger foods. I also want to try the zesty steak salad.

Here’s to battles won to keep us free; and here’s to staying free.

A great beverage to consider on this glorious weekend of family, friends, relaxation and fun is Bell’s Oberon. The label on the bottle says it all: with the color and scent of a summer afternoon.