Wednesday, May 26, 2010

A-Tisket, A-Tasket, (Humor) Easter Detritus Lingering Longer Than the Chocolate Afterglow...

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

A-Tisket, A-Tasket

It doesn’t matter that I’m the mom of young adults, or that it’s May, or that I’ve vacuumed the floor and cleaned the house at least 150 times since Easter, I am STILL finding Easter basket remnants, including that plasticky grass stuff floating around the floor.

We have a plethora of family traditions one of which is Easter baskets, which I’ve been bestowing upon my offspring their entire lives, evoking the sing-songy melody accompanying the nursery rhyme, “A-tisket a-tasket, A green-and-yellow basket.”

As an aside, did you know that Ella Fitzgerald recorded “A-tisket, A Tasket,” in 1938 and it was an extremely successful signature song for her? Can you believe it? (See lyrics and link below for fun. And it’s ALL fun, isn’t it?)

Okay, I’m not sure which of the aforementioned items are unbelievable: That I’m still finding Easter detritus around the ‘ole homestead, that Ella Fitzgerald recorded this nursery rhyme as a successful song or the fact that I knew Ella Fitzgerald recorded “A-tisket, A-tasket.” (I went on to discover that Ella's song, "A-Tisket, A-Tasket," was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1986.)

Now, how to transition smoothly from famous nursery rhymes turned into even more famous songs back to finding decorative Easter items around the house on the “off” season.”
Hum…sooooo…these items just keep turning up.


At our house we have a junk drawer, a junk closet and what is rapidly shaping up to be a junk room. Darned if every time I try to get into any of those, the plastic Easter eggs don’t come popping out as though some steroid-hopped up hen is pelting me with them.

Over the years I have accumulated so many Easter baskets, it looks as though I could open one of those specialty stores where you always wonder what possessed the owner to wake up one morning and say, “THIS is the day that I make my dream happen by opening up a store that sells only Christmas decorations.”

I’ll tell you how that happens. What you don’t see is the day before and all that preceded the realization. The Christmas decoration enthusiast had a family that grew up, left home and all she got were the stinking Christmas decorations. One day she was standing in front of her junk drawer, closet, room, looking at ALL of those leftover decorations, knowing she needed to get rid of them, realizing she couldn’t just bag them all up, so what’s the alternative? Open a store and sell the stuff!

One of my jokes with my kids is that we’ll probably all be in the rest home together and every March/April I’ll have my aide deliver their baskets to them at “the home.” Only, even as I say that, this year feels different.

I know that my basket giving days may be at an end because my excitement level with the basket-giving has eclipsed the excitement level of my little darlings. Rather than hope for early grandparenthood or the opening of a retail store selling all things Easter, I’ll probably just do what any red-blooded, soon-to-be-empty-nester, mom yearning for days of yore, write-what-you-know scribe would do:

I’m writing a column as I eat old Easter candy I found at the bottom of one of the bunny baskets as I hum, A-tisket, A-tasket, A green-and-yellow basket, wiping my eyes periodically because I have “allergies.”


A-tisket a-tasket
A green-and-yellow basket
I bought a basket for my mommie
On the way I dropped it
I dropped it, I dropped it
Yes, on the way
I dropped it
A little girlie picked it up
And took it to the market
She was truckin' on down the avenue
Without a single thing to do
She was peck, peck, peckin' all around
When she spied it on the ground
A-tisket a-tasket
She took my yellow basket
And if she doesn't bring it back
I think that I shall die
(Was it red?)
No, no, no, no
(Was it brown?)
No, no, no, no
(Was it blue?)
No, no, no, no
Just a little yellow basket

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Safety Issues Related to Yogurt (Humor) to gain access to this tasty treat

May 23, 2010

Snap, Pop, Oh!

If they can put a man on the moon and if the Voyager 2 space probe can visit all four of the Outer Planets and their systems of moons and rings, including the first two visits to previously unexplored Uranus and Neptune, then why can’t they make a yogurt that doesn’t pop you in the face?

When deciding to imbibe the tasty health treat that is yogurt, I look like I’m opening a container of yellow cake uranium, I’m so careful when I peel back the “foil for my protection.” Even so, no matter how hard I try, no matter how slowly I go, no matter how well aware I am of prior outcomes, there’s still that “Snap, pop, oh!” as droplets of yogurtized goodness sprinkle upon me.

But you know this scourge is not just limited to cultured products, having spread to other “no need to chew” foods for which I have a penchant. Victuals such as applesauce and pudding, to name two, create a daily life bursting with encounters of the spotty kind. Where I used to enjoy the convenience that is not masticating, I am now paying dearly for my laziness.

I’m starting to show telltale signs of PTSD due to my “When Snack Foods Attack” experiences. Having to steel myself for each encounter has caused me to appear a bit twitchy and desperate looking, rendering me into a vision nothing like those radiantly happy, yogurt-slurping, pudding-celebrating, applesauce-delighting actors on television.

Though I know these savory snacks will spit on me, I want them, nay, I crave these doll-sized, 60-calorie serving, completely fortified with my daily vitamins and minerals fare, so I continue my Lucy-holding-the-football-for-Charlie-Brown relationship with them.

I tell you, it gives a whole new meaning to the slogan, “Good to the last drop” because my last drops are greatly affected by the fact that I’m wearing several first drops which, in turn, make my snack food go all the faster.

I mean, have you tried to spot clean gelatinous drops of snack shots from your garments lately? My “Tide to Go” usually is my “Tide Does the Trick,” but not when dealing with a substance like inulin, which is what’s in these things, and is described as a “natural dietary fiber.” Oh, good, I was worried it was something unnatural like, cocoa processed with alkali, surcralose, or even that rascal, carrageenan. Okay, that last one looks a little too close for comfort to that other bad word, carcinogen, and I’m reading all of this straight off the label.

I thought I was eating this stuff for my health, but it looks like I ought to lay off of them for my health. Well, super, that should take care of my “Snap, pop, oh!” laundry issues.

I’m glad we resolved that one. Thanks for letting me write about this in order to process and commit to making a change I can do less laundry by. Now I can move on to other things like—wait, just a second, I want to grab a writing implement and make a note about what I need to move on to, before I forget it.

Huh. I don’t remember buying this pen and, actually, it looks as though it’s… “Snap, pop, oh!” …leaking.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Cleaning as a Preemptive Strike..(Humor) or how NOT to add hoarder to list of accomplishments

May 5, 2010

Cleaning as a Preemptive Strike

Lest I become a specially invited guest on TLC’s “Hoarding: Buried Alive” one of my progeny has informed me that I’ve become a wee bit of a pack rat and that I need to clean things out and fast. Actually, her level of frustration was such that, belying what we thought was an inability to take charge of cleaning matters, she launched into the project that was cleaning up/out her mother’s bathroom. This after she attempted to find a Q-tip in my bathroom and instead discovering all manner of “anything but,” which, in no particular order, tallies up to the following, non-all-inclusive list, which reads like an off season “Twelve Days of Christmas” litany:

1 lighted mirror that last “got lit” when I did (as an aside, that would be years ago).

2 soap dishes with 1 usable soap, 1 cute soap, and 1 sliver (memory) of soap.

3 baskets filled with old make-up, some of which is obsolete.

4 deoderants, none of which lived up to assurances as to their ability related to keeping one dry while one is doing anything other than applying the aforementioned deodorant while breathing. I am now convinced “natural” is synonymous with “will leave you in your natural state.”

5 nail polishes that resembled a rainbow oil slick of color when, in point of fact, they were once one, non-tacky color.

6 nail files that done should have been filed in the round trash can some years ago.

7 combs of varying tooth distances, none of which have ever been used, my “heirloom” vent brush being my favorite hair tool of choice.

8 old Q-tips that may have once held some very important DNA samples, but at this juncture are just plain gross.

9 moisturizer samples to which I acquiesced to taking just to get out of the freaking store.

10 eyeshadows that seemed to be my shade when viewed in the store’s attractive florescent lighting, but when I got home in my equally attractive energy-saving, low wattage lighting the mirror didn’t lie, even if lighting everywhere has honesty issues.

11 containers of all sizes, shapes and purposes, the main one being to organize all of the above. We fired all of them. (Okay, don’t tell my daughter, but I did scavenge one cute container with a Hawaiian girl on it.)

12 X 3 lipsticks that looked fabulous on the Revlon models (See “10 eyeshadows.”)

I noted what these things were as I took out 4 bags of garbage, which was the least I could do, given my daughter devoted an entire day and precious “between texting” moments to the endeavor that was getting Mom to let go of her accumulated, though lacking in value, treasures. After all, the kid was cleaning out cabinets containing products that ceased being produced some time around the year she achieved toddlerdom, pulling herself up by those very same cabinets.

This, in turn, motivated me to turn my attention to my closet – that most hallowed, Smithsonian-like enclosure, preserving every fashion and, thus, decade I have experienced in my short walk down life’s continuum. (I’m now noticing that when I refer to 30-year-olds I can’t help myself from prefacing any age under 42 with, “that young person who is about…”)

From there I managed to cull 3 bags of clothes, shoes, and belts which my husband promptly placed in the trunk and I equally promptly donated the next day, lest I grow faint of heart. I must admit to you, I experienced a last-minute, terrier-like digging session at which time I attempted to excavate a faded, black, memory-evoking shirt. You will be happy to know that I failed in my attempt because I had no less than three nice people from the thrift shop come toward me, asking me if I needed help, which curtailed further pawing activities on my part. I have a feeling they’ve seen my kind before – the pre-hoarder, teetering on the edge of her new classification, so it’s best to assist someone like me with a “this will only hurt for a minute,” rip the band-aid off approach and take the bags from me right away.

I do feel better though and I’m noticing so much, like the fact that my bathroom counter is pristine and white and that my black and white, tiled accent table can be used for its original purpose. It is actually quite lovely, in addition to being a bit functional and there is no need to waste its offerings on serving as the base for my Jenga-building of products from past and present.

And the best part? This cleaning up and getting rid of decluttering is cathartic and so very symbolic. I’ve noticed more now that I have less and I consider that progress.