Monday, July 30, 2012

domestic goddess - bah, humbug! . . . or where the hell did i put the creamer?


I'm participating in Photo A Day challenge. This is my July 30 photo representing the word for the day, CALM, and including it here on the off-chance it might influence my day.

So much for calm.  When I went for my second cup of coffee this morning, I couldn't find the creamer. The most likely spot would have been here, next to the coffee maker.

Under normal circumstances, it might also have been on the counter on the other side of the sink, but, as you can see, circumstances aren't normal. These are waiting for disposal, as soon as I figure out what that would be.

Or maybe I put it away here, where it is always stored.

Cannot have disappeared. Gremlins have not had time to snatch it.

You know how sometimes in a last ditch effort you look even where you wouldn't expect to find it?

But of course . . . right in the spot that was vacated by the coffee cup,
where it has never been before.

*     *    *    *    *

I awoke befuddled today, not able to answer "what day is this?" The familiar sounds of the Today Show at the Olympics failed to distinguish it. The extra pain in my back reminded me I'd vacuumed "yesterday." But was yesterday Sunday, or was it Monday? If today is Monday, I have no appointments. If it's Tuesday, I'm not sure. I didn't want to get up yet; I'd rather take an Excedrin and let it work its magic for a few minutes. But if it's Tuesday and I have something to do soon . . . ?

Before Chloe could figure out what I was doing, I zipped out the bedroom door and closed it so she wouldn't meow her way down the hall as I fetched my PDA. I didn't want the cats all stirred up in anticipation of morning routines yet. (Why do we always walk "down" halls? Have you ever heard anyone say "the cat will follow me 'up' the hallway?) I snagged the PDA and tiptoed back to the bedroom.

I pressed one of the ON buttons. Nothing. I pressed another. Nothing. Same for three other buttons. Nothing but a black screen. Rats! I pulled out a charging cord and plugged it in. Nothing. Nothing? Uh oh. Okay, kitties, I'll tend to you now. The PDA back-up is out on the computer.

Kitties taken care of, I confirmed today as Monday and free of appointments. On Tuesday, I have an 8:30 lab appointment. Whew!

They don't seem to sell PDAs anymore. Do smart phones hold all the same kinds of data? I started browsing my cell phone provider's website and there's nothing mentioned about shopping lists, address books -- with real snail mail addresses -- Excel and Word files, pdf's, even limited free web browsing. I don't want to pay another 50 bucks a month just to have a smart phone.

I put on a pot of coffee.

When I finally returned to the bedroom, the PDA was glowing brightly. Apparently it had needed to develop a little charge before it could come to life.

*    *    *    *    *

I thought for a moment at the start of the weekend that I was going to get some domestic tasks accomplished, in particular, vacuuming, since the rubber soles of my Birkenstocks scuff up rolls of cat fur on the wool carpet in the places I frequent. Like, under the computer table and in the bathroom. My lady who cleans is still out of commission, unable to work at the moment but imploring me not to fire her.

So Friday night, I actually cooked dinner before going to the Eagles tribute concert, if by cooking I can include boiling the water for Kraft Macaroni & Cheese and wrapping an ear of corn in buttered and salted wax paper and nuking it. Oh, and don't forget the salad. And an Original Drumstick.

Nothing to drink. Not a thing to eat. Not even the warm smell of colitas rising up through the air at the Groveland Hotel, but I came home on a music high from the concert. Saturday I ignored cat fur on the carpet and wrote about Hotel California and all the rest.

Sunday would be the defurring. My preference (!) for cleaning is to straighten up, dust, scrub sinks, basins and toilets, vacuum, then wash the linoleum floor surfaces (or would that be vinyl in my not-as-dated-as-linoleum 1990 house?). If I were to follow that sequence, I'd run out of steam no farther along than basins and toilets and the fur rugs would still remain. So I began at the linoleum end of the house.

Ages ago, my cleaning lady sent me from store to store, buying and returning, until I got the proper mop for washing the floor. I'd always used some kind of sponge mop or another, but she seems to get good results with this:

It stumped me for a while, until I figured out how to work that bumpy tube to wring out the mop strings and how to keep the bumpy tube from scraping along the floor. (That's an attempted smile with my back already hurting.)

Vacuuming had to include fixing a problem in the kitten room. I mentioned last Thursday the problem I have with their getting into the closet in that room where they spend the night. Or any closet, for that matter, because they climb up the clothing, knocking it off the hangers into heaps on the floor, then they throw everything off the shelves above. The closets with the ceiling high sliding mirror doors in the bedrooms are relatively cat-resistant, except for one, which I hold closed by stuffing a down comforter between the door and end of dresser.

The kitten room doors are a double fold arrangement and I try to keep them closed with a belt cinching the knobs together. I showed you what they did recently.

I knew there was a bunch of stuff on the floor, blocking the doors. There was also "soil" from the basket of flowers that needed to be vacuumed up. The minute I opened up the closet, they made a beeline for it and had to be banished to my bedroom. It's hard to lock them in there because they know how to open doors, but it worked for a while.

Meh! Upper left: They'd torn my Kachina's leather basket and scattered the contents.  I had it stashed in the highest place I have to keep them from messing with it but there's nothing out of their reach. Top right: boxes of Christmas cards and original containers for other little geegaws, tossed off the closest shelf and book shelves. Lower left: Looking downward at what blocks the left door: the flower basket, a tackle box full of quilting tools, a baseball cap dryer frame, and . . . Lower right:  . . . other miscellaneous stuff.

I hate not being able to enjoy my beautiful Kachina.

The santon is covered with cat fur, so this is probably not his first encounter with cats.

In fact he sat on the buffet for years, until he suddenly became a target. I bought him for my Papa in Monaco because he looks so much like Papa. After he died, my sister let me have it back.

I will be measuring these and other treasures for acrylic display boxes, so I don't have to lock everything up out of sight.

You've met this final item back at the beginning, covering up my sink. The book shelf in that closet was once a pantry of sorts, until the food got blocked behind other boxes. I dug in and found some expiration dates of 1998, and decided that if I haven't used it by now, I'm not likely to use it. I think most of this stuff is rancid or stale (although I wonder about the sealed packets of natural mashed potatoes). Some of it, if it's not rancid, can go out for the animals (deer or raccoons?) and the rest on a trip to the dump, er, transfer station.

I did finish vacuuming in time to go to Sister's for dinner but my back is out of whack so alternative arrangements for vacuuming need to be made.

I'm not sure what the moral of this story is, but don't worry about those sinks and basins that I didn't get to. I need to replace a broken kitchen sink faucet and that order has escalated into several basins, a sink, several faucets, one new toilet and ancillary items. I'm forgetting other things on the list but looking forward to a plumbing invasion. And I love my kitties, little monsters that they are. I just have to live like I permanently have a couple of two year olds, and baby-proof the house!

See you soon.



  1. Wow, your bored darlings did do a number on the closet! How about cleaning a room a day, instead of trying to do the whole thing at once?

    1. Fur tracks from room to room at a fierce rate!

  2. I'm re-reading this at night, having been woken by a cat up-chucking on the bed. This, after his playful but nipping romp on the couch while I was trying to write and watch the Olympics. I'll try to have generous thoughts about cats, seeing as you do and yours did more real damage!

    1. Isis looks like a mellow cat, but he sure has you and Ed trained well.