Tag Archives: humor

Cleanliness is Next to Godli….er, Impossible


We’ve all heard it, right? Cleanliness is next to godliness. Have nothing in your home that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful. A place for everything and everything in it’s place. Following these adages I should be riding the highway to hell with nary a possession to call my own. Needless to say, keeping a clean house is an issue I struggle with.

Now don’t get me wrong. I WANT a clean house, I covet a clutter free living room, I’ve even been known to wake from sleep having dreamt of a spotless, shiny kitchen and sparkly windows and floors. I have a few barriers that keep this from becoming a reality.

First, I have pets. Loads of them. 2 dogs and 2 cats call me mom. Shedding comes in phases – the constant but manageable phase and the season changing unbearable phase. Multiply that by 4, do this to the nth power because 1 is a German Shepherd and you get…..well….I’ve never been good at math but the amount of hair equals a lot. Every single day there is a fine coating of assorted hairs on the coffee table and furry tumbleweeds skittering across the tiled floor. Every. Single. Day. During those aforementioned unbearable phases the tan carpet becomes a lovely shade of black (the Shepherd is black), that even daily vacuuming – yes I said DAILY –  doesn’t keep under control. I think that maybe once upon a time I was allergic to pet dander but I have since then ingested such high quantities as to inoculate myself.

I’ve considered the possibilities of how to handle this furry issue. But, I love the animals. I’m not willing to get rid of them or to confine them to a box for the rest of their natural lives. So….we have a pet hair problem.

Secondly, I have children. They no longer play with “toys” but rather have sports paraphernalia, dance gear, and an ENORMOUS amount of papers that lie in their wake. School papers, extracurricular activity papers, letters from colleges, notes from friends, art projects from 3rd grade that no one wants to part with… The paper trail is endless. And it adds up. Literally. It becomes stacks on whatever free surface can be found. Then of course there are the mountains of laundry. They do some of their own laundry but it multiplies so quickly they need backup assistance. And let’s be honest, kids in general aren’t typically stellar at always “putting everything in its place.” Now, add that thin layer of animal hair onto all of this – classy, yep.

Seriously, I’m not blaming a dirty house on having kids. It’s only one element of the issue. Because really, there’s more.

The third and biggest factor – me. I suck at constant cleaning. I am fully aware of this shortcoming. While I recognize it and I attempt to change it, I am also painfully aware that I will most likely never be a superstar cleaner. Here’s the thing: when I hardcore deep clean, it is spotless. I mean spit shined (although not literally because that’s just disgusting and not at all clean). The trouble is that I just don’t want to do that every single day. I ABHOR dusting. It’s my least favorite chore of all time. Seriously. I’ll do windows, I’ll scrub bathrooms….just please for the love of all that’s good, someone else dust. But apparently everyone in my home has the same mentality so the dusting chore….shall we say….suffers. Likewise, I don’t want to vacuum everyday. I’ll do it several times a week. But everyday? It just seems like pointless overkill to me.

And, I clearly need an organization system that is seriously effective but as of yet I do not have said system. So….papers pile up, stacks teeter to the tipping point, then they get moved to an area akin to massive stacks of newspapers from back in the day. Remember when your grandpa hoarded stacks of newspapers….if you went to the very bottom of the very first stack the papers would probably be from aught 3…..yeah it’s just like that. My oldest child is knocking on the door of 20 and I’m pretty sure there are some scribblings from when he was 2 in there. But where am I going to put them? I’m not emotionally ready (and honestly don’t know if I’ll ever be), to get rid of them….he certainly doesn’t want them….so they stay in the stacks. I’ve gotten slightly more organized by putting the stacks in plastic containers, but now the containers are stacking up too.

Here’s the kicker: I have OCD. I’m not just throwing that acronym around willy-nilly…..I’m actually diagnosed….it says so on my medical chart. There aren’t enough hours in a day nor energy reserves in my body to keep things around here as clean as I want them to be. When things don’t get cleaned my OCD tends to push me toward an anxiety/panic attack. Then when that gets sorted I have an emotional breakdown because everything isn’t “in its place.” It’s really a vicious circle – round and round we go.

I try to find comfort in wise words of other folks who suffer in this manner and remember that really my house isn’t nearly as bad as it seems in my own mind. And, that it doesn’t matter if things are spotless when the kids are happy and memories are being made. I really do try to remember all of that. Somewhere deep down I believe it – but oh my goodness there’s so much clutter!

But, it’s Spring. Time for renewal. Time for planting flowers and vegetables, time for singing birds and baby lambs. And…time for cleaning. Cleaning out the fur and the dust and the cobwebs…not just on your floors and windows and tables but the ones in your head and heart as well. While you’re mopping the floor, let go of a past hurt that’s been gnawing at you. When you clean out the overstuffed closet, forgive yourself for that thing that keeps you from moving forward. While you clean your windows, formulate a plan to achieve that next thing you want to accomplish in life. Cleaning isn’t just about physical dust and dirt – we all have emotional cobwebs to knock down too. It’s Spring – time to take care of you. When you do, taking care of everyone you love is even better, and they will notice the change in you. Love yourself so you can love others.  Try being a little OCD about it….even if you aren’t diagnosed.

Happy Spring!





This Girl Has Been Busy


yarnI haven’t written anything in awhile and for my faithful readers, I apologize. But, I have a really good reason – I promise!

I’ve opened a home-based business. Try not to let your eyes roll too far back in your head. I KNOW people try these things all the time and they rarely seem to work out – but I really believe I can do this. Plus, I’m gaining some fantastic little tidbits to share with everyone along the way that are sure to make you laugh and shake your head. So…..win win.

I’ve tried my hand at direct selling opportunities – and they were good, legitimate opportunities. But here is what I’ve found. To get started, to get that base of clients that will spread the word about you and will buy a few things here and there in the very beginning, you HAVE to know people. You have to have some friends. You need at least a small network of folks that will support you as you get started. Full disclosure – I don’t fall into that group. I’m a bit of a loner. Other than my immediate family, I have ONE friend that I hang out with from time to time. Now, I don’t say this in an effort to garner sympathy because I’m just fine this way, but I say it to illustrate the fact that any business opportunity that requires me to have friends hold parties or whatnot are just not gonna work for me.

So, I decided to go a different route. Early last Fall I picked up a new hobby; I started crocheting. I love it and I’ve picked it up really quickly and my stuff looks awesome! Who knew I had a natural talent for something like that. Anyway, after making the obligatory scarves and whatnot for people for Christmas – I’m pretty sure those are the required gifts for folks on your first crocheting Christmas – I have since delved into more extensive projects. I’m making baby blankets, full-size blankets, and all kinds of different bags….market bags, tote bags, boho bags….you get the picture.

I love it so much and the projects are turning out so lovely that I decided to offer them up for sale. Now, here’s the first little tidbit that may make you chuckle. You see, I needed a platform; some method of sharing my product with the public. So, I’ve started a Facebook page and I’ve opened an Etsy shop. I LOVE these options because for people like me who are friendship challenged it’s a fantastic way for people to see what you have to offer. But, I needed to put my products into a category – and well, I’m never good at labeling. I don’t like pigeonholing anything into one category. Yeah yeah, I know…..come on, it’s a product for sale how hard could it be….but really, is a blanket  home decor, or is it home furnishings? And are bags accessories, or personal items, or household products? See…it’s really not so easy.

Anyway – I managed to get my products into categories but here is the awesome thing that I discovered: I AM A FIBER ARTISAN!!!!

All this time I thought I was just a lady that really enjoyed making things and had decided to sell some of them to other people who would enjoy using them – stuff out of yarns and fabrics and whatnot. I had no idea there was an actual name for what I do! So, I’m stoked….I feel like I have an actual title instead of, “yeah, my mom stays home.” Because seriously, it’s not like I’m doing nothing all day. My little fingers are going like wildfire. I just have the cool benefit of having a couple dogs, a tv, and a super relaxed dress code in my office.

So, as I said in the beginning – I apologize for not writing sooner and I promise I will do a better job about it now that I’ve got somewhat of a system worked out. I have a feeling that I’m going to have loads of interesting stories to share with you about this new adventure. In the meantime, feel free to check out my little shop on social media. I’d like nothing more than to make something lovely for you – and who knows, maybe I’ll even make a few friends in the process!

I hope all of you are doing something that makes you happy. Tell me – what do you do? Do any of  you have experience in this online business world? I’d love to hear any advice you have.

Talk to you soon!

Leslie – FIBER ARTISAN 😉 and owner of Detroit Temper & Yarn

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Detroit-Temper-Yarn-by-Leslie/878793718832714

Etsy: https://www.etsy.com/shop/DetroitTemperandYarn?ref=hdr_shop_menu

Who Knew?



Who knew that little green thing in there could cause such drama? Not me…that’s for sure.

I’ve had kind of a crappy few months. Just before Christmas break I got some nasty virus. Of course it’s at Christmas time – because I had already asked off from work for the holidays, the kids didn’t have school…. Anyway, that virus escalated into near pneumonia which took about 2 weeks to get over. Miraculously I was better JUST in time to go back to work without missing a beat. Stellar holiday vacay.

Back to work, all is well – start to feel a bit under the weather. I wasn’t really sure what it was, just didn’t feel “right.” That is said in quotes and rather loosely because most who know me would say that I’m never “right.” Anyway. This one particular night my back seized up. I say seized up because I really don’t know any other way to describe it. I felt like I was being given a super rough bear hug by a sword wielding super ninja bear that was pissed off that his honey had been taken when he awoke from hibernation. Did I mention that he was pissed? I tossed and turned and shed some tears trying to get comfortable; standing, sitting, lying down – on my tummy, my back, my left side, my right side…..absolutely nothing worked. Then like magic, the next morning I was ok. A little sore from the bear wrangling, but not too worse for the wear.

This pattern continued for a week or so and then the pain began to creep around my ribs and settle into the center of my chest. I really just believed it to be strained muscles from all of the aforementioned bear wrangling – I would cry a little, take some Aleve and move on.

Long story short (don’t you love that…I’ve already spent 3 paragraphs on it, it’s apparently not so short – but hey, I’m Irish, we don’t DO short stories), I ended up in the Emergency Room on a lovely Monday night full of narcotics and signing a release to take out my wicked infected and inflamed gallbladder.

The next 36 hours were all pretty much a blur. I was in and out of consciousness, either from anesthesia or pain meds and quite frankly I was just fine with that. I was discharged Wednesday mid-morning  in a haze of drug induced happiness thinking that I would go home, rest for a few days and be good to go. Yeah – not so much.

I’m sore, I’m grouchy, I’m bored, I’m hungry……and supposedly this is all NORMAL?? What the hell? Seriously?

“You have to give your body time to recover from the invasiveness (is that even a word?) of surgery,” “Your incisions will heal in a few weeks time, just be patient,” “It’s completely normal to be sad and moody after general anesthesia, within 6 months you’ll feel better,” “Enjoy the time you have to relax and rest,” “Your digestive system will regulate itself over time,” “Just have everyone wait on you hand and foot.” I DID NOT sign a paper about any of this stuff. I know the pain meds were strong but believe you me I would’ve remembered this shit.

I feel ok as long as I’m sitting on the sofa but for the love of all that’s good don’t expect me to walk to the kitchen and back without being exhausted. I rest peacefully as long as I’ve taken a pain pill and I’m in the recliner on the sofa, but don’t expect to lie in my bed like a normal person and sleep. I’m bored out of my mind and no I don’t want to watch ANOTHER episode of anything at all nor do I want to watch any more Olympics nor do I want to….see where this is going? And while I’m this bored, don’t expect me to get up and actually DO anything because..well…I’m exhausted. I’m so hungry I feel like I could eat an entire pizza or a steak or a lobster dinner, but don’t expect me to eat anything other than scrambled eggs and toast because everything else has my tummy rumbling and me speed shuffling to the ladies room.

I suppose the moral to this story is this: if you have pain, get it checked out, and if you end up on the wrong side of a surgical scalpel try to remember that recovery is a process and it’s gonna suck for awhile. I’m just not yet sure for how long.

Silver lining: I’ve lost 9 pounds already. Now, could someone please make me a cuppa and pass the damn remote!!

I Want To Wear Red


I know that losing weight slowly is the healthy way. I know that if the weight gradually comes off that we are more likely to keep it off. I am aware that fad diets are typically not very healthy. I am well aware that one needs to exercise as well as make healthy eating choices in order to peel off the extra pounds. I know that nothing comes easy and that the weight didn’t go on overnight and that it certainly won’t come off that way. I realize that hoping you can drop 2 jeans sizes in a month is an unrealistic goal. I know it takes lots of sweat and time and celery to get to your target weight. I mean come on, I watch The Biggest Loser; I see the trainers yell and scream and the contestants cry and breakdown….I didn’t expect weight loss to be an easy thing.

But apparently my body has decided to rebel. It has decided that no matter how many low-calorie days I have nor how many miles I run, that it will stay at exactly the same weight. I think my belly laughs at me every time I put on that sports bra. I’m pretty sure that my metabolism, my fat cells and my endorphins have all gotten together and made a pact; they’ve decided to trick me. I’ve imagined them having this conversation; “Ok, so here’s the plan. She’s gonna take those vitamins and drink those concoctions that are supposed to make me speed up but I’m only going to give a marginal effort in increasing. Endorphin, you kick in when she runs and make her believe she’s really doing a great job so she’ll keep going. And fat, you just hang out. You don’t really need to do anything at all. You’re perfect just the way you are. Got it? Ok….ready…..break!”

I’m convinced it happens just like that. Because you see, after 4 months of exercising – yes, there are times when I only go twice a week instead of the 5 times….but there’s only been once that I took the whole week off. And we were on vacation so it doesn’t count. Anyway, 4 months of exercising along with those same 4 months of much better eating. Yes, I have an occasional doughnut and milkshake. I refuse to totally give up the things I love. If I do I’ll never keep the weight off – but wait, I’m getting ahead of myself. 4 months of exercising and cleaner eating and guess how much weight I’ve lost?!?!?!? – NOT ONE FREAKING POUND!!! NOT. ONE.

I’ve moved past the I know it’s a slow process and healthy weight loss takes time right into the severely pissed off and bitter that I’m kicking my ass on a regular basis and not seeing any changes. Not any.

No, I don’t make it to the gym 6 days a week every single week. But I’m going every week. And believe me, coming from being a rather sedentary person who’s most rigorous form of exercise was reaching for the bag of pretzels that had slipped behind the minivan driver’s seat whilst driving to a wrestling match…..hitting the gym every week on a regular basis is a huge change! I completely cut out the fast food from my diet. Yes, I have had 2 slip-ups in the 4 months – I will own up to my mistakes. But hey, I don’t think that’s terrible coming from someone who used to grab a dollar burger and fries at least once a week – ok, usually twice a week. Only 2 slip-ups! That’s pretty darn good in my book.

So what the hell?

Talk about frustrated. And this kind of frustration is different from any other. I’ve been frustrated because I had to sit in traffic and frustrated because I had too many obligations and I’ve been frustrated because I was in the mood and the hubs was too tired……this is a totally different frustration. Working hard, denying yourself things that make you happy like jelly doughnuts and greasy burgers and lots and lots of bread; and doing things that you really don’t enjoy like running for miles and lifting weights and dripping sweat – all to no avail is not easy.

I’m about to begin month 5 and I weigh exactly what I did when I started. Actually according to my scale I weigh 2 pounds more – but hey, who’s counting. I just don’t get it. And I want to give up. I really do. I’m tired of it. But I remember what I felt like when I could fit in the jeans that have been on the top shelf of my closet for the past year and a half. And I want to have that feeling again. I want to be proud of how I look and not feel like I need to try to conceal everything in non-form fitting black clothes. I want to wear red.

So I’ll keep on keeping on. But I sure could use some help. Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

I’m out….gotta go to the gym.

Scared Salt-Free


I am a mother of three children between the ages of 11 and 17. I am supposed to be a much shorter version of Wonder Woman. I typically don’t get sick, even when the kids do. I can function on very little sleep, although I will admit that as I get olde…..er….more mature, sleep becomes more of a priority for me. At any rate, I’m not the one that usually has to have medical attention. As a matter of fact, I purposely do not seek medical attention – unless I feel like I’m on my deathbed or if I go simply to silence those around me from complaining. Such was the case today. Yes, I’ve had a stiff neck for two weeks. Yes, my vision has suddenly gone blurry. Yes, I’ve had a constant headache for days. But I have rational reasons for all of these issues. My neck has been stiff because I twisted oddly at work and tweaked the muscles. Those take time to get back to normal. I’ve been having blurry vision because I’ve been reading A LOT and I haven’t been wearing my reading glasses as much as I should, and let’s face it, I’m not getting any younger. And the headache….well, I think I mentioned that I have three kids. One who is a high school Senior and I tend to worry about his future a wee bit. And headaches are normal really. They happen.

So anyway, today I gave in and went to the doctor, mainly to silence the critics of my poor medical attention seeking habits. It turns out that my blood pressure is kind of crazy high. And apparently the headaches are coming from that. And then, when she listened to my little ticker it was making a “clicking” noise – one that apparently isn’t really supposed to be there. Long story short – I have an echocardiogram appointment in a few days and a return visit to my doctor a few days after that. And I’m supposed to be relaxing, taking it easy….stress-free. Oh yes, and the salt thing. No salt. None. What???? Who eats that way? I promptly came home and began researching low sodium foods. Fruits and vegetables. Fresh ones. That’s it. *sigh

But I will admit that this has scared me. Hearing the numbers when she kept checking my blood pressure was frightening. So I guess I’m going to suck it up and try to go salt-free the rest of this week and see how it goes. Or at least salt-minimal. I’ll try it. If you have any suggestions or amazing recipes that don’t involve sodium….or peas because I really don’t like them….clue me in!

Oh, but I was right about the pulled muscles in my neck….see….I didn’t need to go to the doctor. Pfft.

Decoration Deadline


I am not a Scrooge. I love Christmas time – I super love Christmas lights. One of my favorite things to do in the final weeks of the year is to drive around and see what clever decorations people have erected. You can kinda get a feel for the personality of the family living inside just by looking at their Christmas decorations. Some are reserved, some elegant, some a bit flashy…you can also tell if the family has young children (evidenced by Snoopy and/or Mickey Mouse in the yard). Granted, these assumptions aren’t always correct but often they are spot on.

Here’s the trouble though……Christmas decorations have a deadline. Seriously. Every town should have a mandatory time when Christmas decorations must be taken down. We’re now almost two full weeks into the new year and it drives me just a wee bit crazy to see full-on displays still up. And being turned on. I can understand if you haven’t had time to take all the lights down and get them stored away in the garage……but do they need to be turned on every night? I just don’t understand the desire to have them up until spring. My tree usually comes down Christmas day – I realize this may be a bit extreme, but when Christmas is over, for me it’s over. Time to clean up the mess and move into the new year unencumbered by blinking lights and stray tinsel.

Let’s keep Christmas lights and decorations confined to Christmas time – it makes them more special – and it keeps your electric bill down.

Back to School Education



This time of year is always exciting. New shoes, new haircuts, new backpacks…..anticipation about seeing friends, who will be sitting next to you in class, if the teacher really has a 3rd eye and horns like you were told….. But this is for the kiddos. Parents see back to school time slightly different. Now that the first week of school is under our belt, I’m taking a moment to reflect upon what I’ve learned this week.

1. Getting up at 5:45am sucks. Totally. I am not a morning person – never have been. I have really enjoyed my summer of being able to sleep in, even on a weekday. I like not getting up until 8 or 9am. I don’t need to sleep until noon…..but I am not a fan of rising with the chickens. If it’s still dark outside – and I mean pitch black dark with no hint of a sunrise anywhere to be seen – then it’s too early to be waking up.

2. One should not wait until the day before the first day of school to purchase notebooks, binders, pencils, etc. The pickins are slim and then a rather cantankerous, moody, diva-ish 5th grader becomes quite foul and dramatic – letting one know how everyone else will have everything they need and she will be the only one who doesn’t have every item on the list of 25 things now needed to successfully complete 5th grade. What I believed to be a financially savvy move, waiting until the last minute thereby snagging some really great deals was in fact the catalyst for foot-stomping, hands on hips, tilted head with eyes rolling so far back I think they may have done a full loop and voiced exasperation of my lack of concern to her embarrassment and imminent failure of 5th grade. Procrastination does not pay.

3. Freshmen boys primp a lot. Stereotypical beliefs lead us to think that it’s the teenage girls that take forever in the bathroom and are the ones who obsess over hair and clothes. But I tell you that this is not so. This is not a female issue alone. 14 year old boys take a very long time to create the exact look of aloofness coupled with proper hygiene that is apparently necessary. I don’t know why I’m so surprised by this – I mean really, everyone knows you don’t wear stripes 2 days in a row.

4. Seniors now have to do a lot more than I did as a Senior. I just had to pick a few colleges that interested me, fill out applications and scholarship forms, mail them out and hope for the best. Now we have to register on 327 different websites, have not only Plan A but contingency plans through T, and know who your date is going to be to the spring formal before Halloween.

5. Filling out the same forms 3 different times is terribly frustrating. We have the technology that allows us to visit Mars, transplant hearts, create fertilized eggs in petrie dishes, build cars using robots…….but somehow we have yet to master a way to connect the emergency contact information that is the same for all kids in a family.

6. Happy homework time is really a pipe dream.

7. When given cash to purchase lunch, kids will oftentimes choose the least nutricious options available.

8. Bedtime can’t come early enough.

9. Wine is good.

I’m sure I’ll learn more things as the school year progresses but I’m feeling pretty good about the knowledge I’ve acquired this week. I hope all of you out there are enjoying and learning new things. Share some of them with me…..