True confessions, part I: Cooking and Cleaning

Today is Monday, true confessions day.

First, I will confess that today I made cake with chocolate-cream-cheese frosting and we already have a whole double-crust apple pie in the house. And cookies. And brownies. But don’t worry, we don’t have any issues around sweets.

Second, I will confess about the laundry situation. I volunteered to be the laundress when I got married. This was a deal I made – I’ll do the laundry and he’ll do the dishes. He hasn’t welched on a single fork. I haven’t washed a dish since I got married. Me, on the other hand. . . well, peoples, let me tell you a story of dirty clothes.

This was my way of doing laundry:

Fill up the hamper, both light and dark. Strew clothes that are half-clean around the room. Finally notice hamper is full and room is clothes-strewn, and I have very few unmentionables. Do one load of laundry. Put it in the dryer. Forget it is there for a night or two. Finally remember laundry is there, take clean clothes and put them “somewhere.” Do a second load. Leave clean laundry on top of the bureau for a few days to “cure.” Finally put everything away. Repeat.

This is a less than perfect way of doing laundry for one person. But when you translate this into doing laundry for four people, it is totally absurd. Trust me. I tried it for a while. It is beyond slacker-wife or slacker-mom. It borders on that crazy family down the road who never take down their Christmas lights. So I am gradually changing my wayward laundry ways. Just yesterday I did a load of laundry that in the old days I would have considered totally unnecessary, as I still had plenty of everything.

Sometimes I feel like as a step-parent I’m playing catch-up. I feel sad that I missed so much of the kids’ growing up. I like hearing stories about what they did when they were really little, their strange little kid quirks. It is a little bittersweet in a way, since that part of their story was so utterly pre-me, if that makes sense. But more sweet that bitter, to quote an old song.

And when it comes to practical things like cooking for six- and eleven-year-old palates or keeping up with laundry, I feel like I’m jumping on a train that’s already going sixty. It seems like, if I had started with a baby at month one, this wouldn’t be such a wacky learning curve. Doing laundry “all the time” (my perception, BTW, totally not reality) and cooking bland, bland, bland food is old hat for someone who has been parenting for eleven years.

Ha, ha, innernets. I just aired my actual dirty laundry.

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