Monday, July 14, 2014

The Haphazard Homemaker

(Or, "Why I Appreciate My Mother")

Hello, my name is Joanna.

"Hi, Joanna."

I'm 21, and I still live with my parents.

That's just how it has worked out. I work full-time and, until last December, I attended college full-time, but I try to do my share of housework, whenever I'm not hyperventilating from a Biomedical Ethics assignment.

It's kind of hard, though, to “help” someone as capable as my mother. See, Mom embodies the term "domestic manager." When she has a plan, she completes the plan. And then proceeds to the next plan.

I, on the other hand, embody the term "haphazard homemaker." When I have a plan, I plan my plan, then I plan to implement my plan, and then OH LOOK THAT BOOK LOOKS INTERESTING.

Needless to say, I really appreciate her hard work. She teaches at the community college 3 days a week, helps both of my younger brothers with their college classes, and still manages to run our house like a well-oiled machine. So, recently, when Mom and my brothers visited family for 2 1/2 weeks, and left Dad and I on our own, I got to see what kind of homemaker I would be. Boy, oh, boy, did I learn a few things.

1. Laundry never ends. Ever. The next brother to throw clean clothes BACK in the laundry while “cleaning” the room is not getting those clean clothes back. Ugh. Nudists have it so easy.

2. Three days of nonstop rain is not a good enough reason to break down and use the dryer. When the sun is shining AND you’re off work, then you can hang out that confounded white load.

3. Ironing is flat-out BORING. But if you wear your cutest zebra-print heels, pour yourself a party-glass of pomegranate juice and turn on some dub step violin, ironing has just become FUN.

4. Cooking is fun, but cooking without a recipe is really, really, really fun. Psh. Whoever decided chicken spaghetti needed flour anyways….

5. Um, apparently, cooking also requires forward thinking. If you want to make spaghetti on Wednesday night, perhaps, on Tuesday, you should verify that you actually own cooked ground beef. *banging head on refrigerator*

6. When you make pico de gallo, wear a big, pink Kentucky Derby-worthy hat. The pico will taste better. Honest. I think it intensifies the cilantro or something.

7. There is no laissez-faire policy to gardening. Tomatoes are PROLIFEROUS. I can't keep up with them.

8. There are right and wrong ways to buy groceries. My father nearly passed out when he saw the skim milk. I know it's thinner. It's also the cheapest. Obviously, that’s more important…right?

9. Planners save lives. No kidding. I tend to cook--no, run the kitchen--WHO AM I KIDDING, I LIVE--by the seat of my pants. If I didn’t have a planner, I would forget to put in my contacts. Actually, I’m joking. I can’t see without my contacts.

10. I come from a family of 6. HOW ON EARTH DO YOU COOK FOR TWO PEOPLE?!

11. I’m not admitting anything here, but were you aware that if you forget to clean a commode for 2 weeks, it turns colors?

12. And, finally, is there a magic potato soup ratio of potatoes to milk?! *sobs into couch pillows*

Thankfully, Mom came home. And, actually, after 2 ½ weeks, it started to feel like she was coming to visit me at my house. She walked in to a clean living room, pretty-smelling bathroom and a kitchen full of homemade beef and bean enchiladas with brown rice and homemade pico de gallo. Pretty good for a newb, if I have to say so myself.

Honestly, the whole experience made me a little bit excited to get my own house. But that could still be a while in coming, and I currently have 2 teenage brothers, so, if you’ll excuse me, I hear my macaroni boiling over.