take it for a spin

I want a pretty laundry room. Pinterest told me I should… and could. Colorful walls, a delicate chandelier, granite counter, coordinating baskets and custom artwork. Pinterest has brainwashed me to believe I should be shoveling mounds of clothing in and out of machines in a state of luxury.

And, frankly, I like that idea. I mean, I am averaging 1,000 loads of laundry each year. I don’t think it’s too much to ask to liven up a daily drudgery. So, when Philip presented the idea of removing the bulky stands beneath our machines and replacing the tops with a beautiful countertop, I was intrigued.

My laundry room could look like this…

laundry room 1

Or, this…

laundry room2

Or, even this…

laundry room3

I could do laundry in pretty. {Oh, how my wish list has changed.}

But, then, I snapped back to reality. I realized that without the stands, little hands could reach all those irresistible buttons and easily crawl into open machines. This could only end in disaster. Horrifying thoughts of Austin shoving little brother into the washing machine flashed through my mind. Oh, no. No. No. No. This would not work. Knowing our boys, this would absolutely happen.

As time has passed, the thought of ditching the stands occasionally creeps back into my head. Usually, it’s when I’m waist deep in stinky little boy clothing. But, as of last week, that thought is squelched for good.

A few mornings ago, Austin “slept in.” And, when I say “slept in,” I mean he came into our bed at 6 a.m. and continued to sleep soundly with his arm in my face until 8 a.m. He even slept through Everett’s wailing grand entry into the mix slightly before 7 a.m. This is considered sleeping in at our house.

Anyway, because extra sleep rarely never happens here, this threw off our entire schedule of getting out the door on time for Mother’s Day Out. So, we scrambled and hurried, and I did my best to make sure everyone was presentable.

Austin was moving extra slow that morning, so I helped him along. I spent two minutes getting him ready. TWO minutes. When I finished, I scurried off to find Everett who had quickly and quietly left the scene. This is where I found him…


TWO MINUTES! Two minutes, and my one-year-old has sprinted across the house and climbed halfway into the washing machine. I mean, really? Are you kidding me?

He was a shove away from being sent through a wash cycle by Austin. Sheesh. Never getting rid of the stands. In fact, we may need to investigate double stands. Do they make those? Of course, knowing our children, they’ll probably still scale it like a rock climber.

On belay.

one thousand loads of laundry


In a time before animal cracker crumbs were a staple in our bed, before 7 a.m. was sleeping in, and a clean house lasted more than 15 minutes, I spent my spare time doing things other than laundry.

In fact, I actually enjoyed laundry. Laundry day was once a week, and on that day, one or two loads were accomplished. And, that was all that was needed. I would turn on the television and frivolously flip through channels as I lazily folded each piece of clothing.

Fast forward to reality where I am routinely six feet under piles of laundry, and folding clothes is a race against two ticking time bombs. Forget putting it away. Grab and go as necessary, which is why my home is often dotted with miniature shirts, socks and undies. Currently, I do three – sometimes four – loads a day. Let’s look at that for a minute.

Before children, we’ll say two loads of laundry a week. That’s roughly 8-9 loads a month and approximately 104 loads a year.

After children, we’ll play conservative and say three loads a day. That’s 21 for the week, and a grand total of 1,092 loads of laundry a year. Uh. Wow. And, I only have two children.

If this trend continues, we still have approximately 18 years before our youngest moves out. Multiply that number by 18. Nauseating.

Now, I’m hopeful it won’t always be like this. Right now, Everett is a spitter. Not a dainty dribbler, but a full impact soaker. When he spits, he leaves a wave of destruction on anything within a three-foot radius. You can hear the splat across the room. Ew. We clean out our arsenal of bibs and burp cloths every single day. I hear by one year, we should be done with the spit. Fingers crossed.

As for Austin, well, I wash a lot of Lightning McQueen and Thomas the Train undies – and, sheets. Yay for potty training…

I’m beginning to think the stereotypical “smelly kid” label might not be so bad after all.

Looking back, maybe I should have registered for stock in Tide or Dreft, as opposed to a million different socks, blankets and lotions that have all been used once.

Perhaps, it’s time to visit my nemesis, Pinterest, and see how many ways I can make my own laundry detergent. Brilliant. I’ll just squeeze that into my schedule between 1,092 loads of laundry.

just give me a box of crayons

It’s 10 p.m. on the eve of A’s first day back to preschool. And, I stare blankly at an equally blank piece of black construction paper. No inspiration. No motivation. This will be his placemat at school for the entire year.


Now, normally, when given such a task, I would have written his name neatly in the corner, or, perhaps, even used stickers for his name, and then let him color to his heart’s content. I love my son’s artwork even if it’s just a bunch of scribbles to the rest of the world. But, that wouldn’t work this time. Because they gave him a BLACK piece of paper, which means crayons are out and markers are worthless. That’s about the extent of my “craft” closet.

This is really one of those moments where a degree in Pinterest would come in handy. Or, a Pinterest fairy godmother would work, too. But, no, here I am with nothing, counting down the hours until I have to come up with something.

As the paper continues to taunt me, my thoughts wander to what the other moms are doing for their child’s placemat, and then to A’s new school year. And, I begin tallying all the holidays and parties this year that will undoubtedly become Pinterest-inspired extravaganzas. And, thus, instead of making a miracle appear on this piece of paper, I felt compelled to write a letter to my children instead:

Dear Children,

It’s best that you know and accept this now at an early age. I love you. I love you more than you will ever know and always will, but, please know that you should never equate my love with my skills as a crafter. Because I am a Pinterest failure.

It’s okay, and I can openly admit that. I would love to be crafty and fill your lives with designer birthday parties or intricate snowman inspired breakfasts or amazing marble race tracks.

But, really, it’s probably not going to happen. Most trials have ended catastrophically. Forget the dinosaur shaped sandwiches accompanied with fruit shaped palm trees. I’ll try to remember to cut off the crust. And, those adorable homemade Valentine’s… I hear Target has an excellent selection that even include temporary tattoos. If we ever own an Elf on the Shelf, that’s where he will stay… on the shelf. And, I still believe intricate homemade baked good can’t touch the ease and deliciousness of the Pillsbury ready bake cookies.

So, while Mommy may pin hundreds of pins that are just “Adorable!” and “Brilliant!” and would make every other mom in your class swoon, let’s not get our hopes up, kiddos. Because most things that should come out looking like a masterpiece end up straight to the trash.

The best advice I have to offer is to become best friends with the kids whose moms excel at Pinterest. And, maybe that mom can hook you up with treats for the bake sale when she sees you stroll in with a bag of Oreos.

With love,