Monday, June 17, 2013

Busy Being Superwoman...And Failing. Miserably.

The last ten days I’ve been consumed by two major tasks:

Keeping my house clean enough to receive house guests.

Keeping my fridge stocked for said guests.

School is out in many areas of the U.S. which is great for me because it means people are leaving on vacation and, if I’m lucky, popping over to Paris for a sejour. This week my favorite cousin stayed with us for a couple days. Then my only American expat friend who re-patted herself back to the U.S. with her family two years ago came over for dinner with her kids and hubs. And, of course, yesterday was father’s day so we had the in laws over for a barbecue.

Now, I think you all know how I feel about housecleaning. Keeping even a hygienically normal house when you have four kids is downright exhausting. But I bit the bullet and used our upcoming visits as motivation to deep clean our place, washing drapes and linens, mopping, dusting, cleaning bathrooms etc…until the whole place shined!

Then, two days later, I pretty much had to do it again.

And again, a few days after that.

Trying to keep my damn house clean pretty much almost killed me. Because after about the third clean sweep, and mowing the front and back lawns, I came down with the Bubonic French Throat Virus (this may or may not be the official term).

Saturday my nose started running. Sunday it reached faucet-like proportions and my head stuffed up. Wednesday I thought I might be through the worst. Then Thursday I woke up with a sore throat. Friday the fever set in and it felt like I was gargling glass every time I swallowed. This was followed by a range of symptoms running the gamut from mildly irritating to downright bizarre that kept me on my toes all weekend- including chills, fatigue and hand and face swelling.

Finally, today, the virus seems to be receding back into the hell hole from which it sprung and as much as I love having guests from the U.S., I’m thankful for the opportunity to finally just get some rest and relax before we leave on vacation in July.

What I learned: house cleaning can be hazardous to your physical and mental health. Avoid at all costs.

And do you ever feel like life is out to get you despite your best intentions?

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Living in a Musical

First, I want to thank you all for your kind words and advice on last week’s babyblues post. I’m happy to report the postpartum blahs have high-tailed it back to the swampy recesses from which they came (for the time being).

A few things that helped: First off all, the sun finally decided to make its grand debut after six straight months of rain.

Secondly, I was able to get out of the house and run twice this week. I’ll be honest. I’m not good at running. I actually really suck at it (think Phoebe from ‘friends’- I can never seem to get my limbs to work together like they’re supposed to and tend to look like a flailing crazy person the whole time) but the fresh air and time alone, plus the exercise did me a world of good.

And last, and most surprisingly, there’s songwriting.

Yes, I, creepy query girl, have been writing songs. But not the kind of songs where I sit around with a pad of paper and an acoustic guitar, humming lovely little notes and tuning here and there, like those glorious folky singers do in the movies.

My songs are more like an in-promptu soundtrack to my life.

There’s the baby’s bath time song entitled ‘If you keep squirming, you will slip and drown you soapy, squirmy little thing’.

And the spilled milk song. I think the person who invented the ‘don’t cry over spilled milk’ expression could have found a much better analogy.

Spilled milk is a serious pain in the ass, especially when you have children who seem to like to spill it once a week or especially like to let it soak into the kitchen chair cushions before, you know, telling their mother. Milk also makes everything sticky and will start to smell like old cheese if left unattended.  So no, I don’t cry when milk is spilled. But I do go just a little ballistic and start freaking the f#&k out. Thus I decided spilled milk deserves an angry, profanity-strewn black metal song a la iron maiden.

And then there’s my personal favorite, a pop-rock ode to breastfeeding entitled ‘One of these boobs is not like the other’.

It’s a real crowd-pleaser.

If you were writing a song, right now at this moment, what would it be called?


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