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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Packing away childhood to the goodwill

At least it felt like that as Jennifer hauled out about a dozen bags of clothes, toys, Beanie Babies (remember those?), shoes, old notebooks, pencils, pens, glue and tut-cluck-amen.

The last item is the sarcophagus that I worked on until midnight one night when she was in the 7th grade, and the teacher was helping them embalm a foster fryer we'd purchased from Top Foods. Don't really know what happened to that, except it sat in our fridge turning more and more, mummified. But then again, there were a few bottles of salad dressing, chinese leftovers and salsa that was in the same state.

I think we tossed the chicken, but we kept the box (I'd put too much effort into that). There was a rock that was painted. I also plucked from the pile a jump rope, a Girl Scout bag and I think my hubby salvaged a pair of shoes, a couple of b-balls and v-balls and the clothes that we could resell to Plato's Closet.

I don't know what he did with the Beanie Babies, but I've taken all the kid's books. Most of this is going to work with me (to stuff into my already cluttered office). The rest will probably end up in a box in the garage.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Homework, dishes

Jennifer's doing homework again, and probably will be until 9 pm tonight. So I'll probably end up doing the dishes again.

I remember that somehow, when I was a teenager, I managed to do both. I'm trying to decide if she has more homework or I'm just a softer touch than my mom was. Probably a mixture of both.

Monday, February 23, 2009

If I see anyone in here, I'm leaving

So said the daughter as we entered Plato's Closet near Southcenter mall in Tukwila. Think Nordy's Rack for the teen set.

And actually they take this a step farther and will pay you for new and gently used clothes a la the Hollister, AE, Forever XXI and the rest. Jennifer got $30 out of the deal on Saturday, and went back and bought jeans at $15 each (that would normally cost $40 or more each) on Sunday. I also convinced her to at least LOOK at the Vans, and the shirts. She didn't find anything she liked, but at least she wasn't looking to see if anyone was looking at her.

Since she was spending her own $$ for once, she was more interested in keeping as much as she could in her own wallet (since I made it clear I wasn't going to fund this trip.)

Friday, February 20, 2009

The room is almost done

And all seems to be well. The rest of the room did turn out beige, but they ran out of the right beige - so now it's two tone. Back to the paint store again. I'll be at my movie fest. I promised to pick up the dog poop in the morn, but then I'm gone.

I need a new outfit

Jennifer made this pronouncement tonight, as we headed off to the I-don't-cook-on-Fridays dinner.

So we headed over to a shop at kent station - Topaz - that caters to the 20 something or wish they were set. Women of my age appear in that shop to provide venture capital.

She did find a magenta-tan peasant blouse (wore that in the 70s) that looked good. She just HAD to have it until I asked what she planned to do on her date at the Kent ice skating rink tomorrow. Skate right? In a big poofy coat. I doubt that any of the top will show, even if you go to the snack bar. Aaand, you're paying for this since I KNOW you have the $$.

That brought her up short. The shirt went back on the rack for another day.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Two walls to go, so far so good

I came home with trepidation tonight, wondering what mood I'd find my family in. But apparently not to worry, Gary seems resigned to brown and red walls, although I agree with him on one point, the rest of the room should be beige.

I think one of the reasons Jennifer's pushing to get the room done, no matter what the color, is she wanted to hang out with her b-friend and shoot hoops at his house and go ice skating. Yes to the ice skating, no to the hoops without an adult around.

She whined that his mom would be home, since she works the night shift. Okay, let's amend that. A conscious parent has to be home.

I suggested that b-friend could come over here and help her paint. But she said she didn't want him to see the room in a state of disarray and looking like a "little girl's room," and I think unspoken, our house is always a mess, and while she's fine with that, she's not fine with anyone else seeing it.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Parents fight, kids cringe

Even if they pretend they don't care and are listening to their iPod or texting.

This came home as J. told me after her v-day bowling date with her boyfriend, that he was rather gloomy because I guess his parents had been fighting alot. Don't know what about. I asked if either had lost a job of late (always a possibility now) but she said no.

Apparently this happened on v-day, and it ended up with a box of chocolates getting stomped on by mom and then thrown (all at once, or all together, I don't know) at dad. Sort of ruins the spirit of the day.

"You and dad never fight," she added.

Well, actually, we do, I told her. We just have a tendency to go to opposite ends of the house and probably each of us figuring out if we can make bills on our own, we clean, and then sanity returns and we try to talk it out. Somedays. The sun going down on your anger thing has really never worked for us.

I told her it bothered me when my parents fought too, usually over dad's drinking. Okay, amend that, it was always over dad's drinking. But I don't think they ever threw anything at each other. Lobbing words was hard enough.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Mr Beige

The minute Jennifer picked out her new colors for her room, I knew we were going to be in an uphill battle with my hubby.

Gary likes beige. Any beige will do - eggshell, light taupe, desert sand - and one look at any wall in our house will confirm that. We have painted the TV light green, to go with the carpet, and there is one rose pink wall in the living room, which I wanted red, but he came home with pink. Rather than push and pull on that, I decided to go with pink.

He did repaint our room a nice southwestern rust-tan color, but then decided it was too intense, so back to beige the entire room went in an afternoon.

Now Jennifer wants to paint her room brick red, dark chocolate brown and beige (I did talk her out of the purple she wanted to throw into the mix) and thanks to the magic of Behr's virtual room thinking at Home Depot, it looks pretty good.

Gary is not convinced however. But we're both standing our ground with him. We've threatened to paint the room in a single afternoon while he's at the last home and garden show in Seattle even if he doesn't approve. I think he realizes this time, he's licked.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Can I forge your signature?

I'm sure I'm setting a bad precedent with this, but I said fine. This came after a frantic 7:55 am call to my cell phone (just had pulled onto I-5 south to Tacoma) and when I got to work 20 minutes later, she was berating me for not signing off on her class schedule.

What class schedule? I can't sign something I've never seen.

Oh, yeah, she says. I guess I didn't show it to you.

Well, do you have that bus pass I just wrote?


Well, forge the signature from that. I'm not turning back around to Kent to do this.

Fine, but your signature is a bit hard to forge.


Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Stream of conciousness, then she pops the question

Jennifer sometimes goes into this stream-of-consciousness chatter on the way home from school that starts out something like this:

"Oh my god, Steph and I were talking and we think this guy looks like
skylar, from heroes, so we're stalking him to see what he does during the day, but
of course he doesn't see us (uh huh), and then Serena, I can tell her anything,
we were googling on how to French kiss, because one of our friends, the guy was
kissing her and he bit her tongue..are they supposed to do that (um, I don't
think so). by the way, when did you lose your virginity?

Screech like a record player here. I stalled, and resisted with the comeback
"how do you define virginity?" which is not a place either of us wanted to go.

So I told her to give me until the end of a rather loud obnoxious song on 106.1 and then took a deep breath.

"I think it was sometime after college, maybe at 23 or 22?" I was hoping she wouldn't pick up on the "I think."

"That sounds about right to me," she chirped. I don't want to get pregnant or an STD in college, I've got things to do and that would ruin my career.

I resisted pointing out that there are way of having sex that will prevent STDs and babies, but I wasn't going to get into that conversation either.