Intelligence is relative…

Posted on | August 1, 2011 | 6 Comments

Oh yesterday.  Yesterday was a fun little reminder of all the things I don’t know, and don’t do quite right.

Just before lunch time, I came up with the oh-so-brilliant idea of washing the driveway off.  I got out the leaf blower and attacked the layers of pine straw and dirt, revealing a noticeably gray and brown streaked car port.  It was grotesque.  I got out the hose and semi-power washed the concrete, trying to see if it was at all salvageable because at that point I started thinking that the covered area might be the perfect place to have J’s birthday party because it would be out of direct sunlight.  After over an hour of cleaning while J played in the yard, I realized that there was no way the car port floor was ever going to look like anything but a filthy, disgusting, old slab of concrete.  About that time, I also noticed that J was gleefully playing in the scraps from the rose bush, totally unaware that he was slicing up his legs.

We took a break for wound care and lunch and I started thinking there had to be a way to make that concrete look nice enough to host a party there.  Cue Google.  Cue second “brilliant” idea of staining the concrete.  I tossed J into the car and we went to Lowes and bought two gallons of concrete stain.  My color choices were limited to white, gray, black, terra cotta, and sandstone.  I thought briefly about doing white but then decided I’d just end up right back here in a year or two.  Since the carport is red brick, I decided the terra cotta might look nice and we headed back home.  When J went down for his nap, I got to work staining the concrete.

If you’ve never stained concrete, it’s pretty simple… you’re just painting the floor with a stain/sealant.  No big deal, right? Except I’m a sloppy painter.  Really sloppy.  So by the time J woke up from his nap and I went inside to wash up, my hands were absolutely covered with terra cotta stain.  You know how some people have that skin condition where they basically have bleach spots on their skin? That’s what my hands looked like.  So I got to work with soap and water.

Only here’s the thing… concrete stain and sealant? It’s basically supposed to withstand water.  And apparently Target bought soap as well.  I finally threw on gloves so I could get J out of bed and then it was back to the sink.  No lie, the only way I was able to get it all off my hands? With a pair of eyebrow tweezers.  I stood at the sink, with my hands smarting under hot water, and scraped that stain off my hands with the side edge of a pair of tweezers.

When I’d scraped off all the stain and half my skin, I took J out on the patio where we both enjoyed a Popsicle while my hands stopped stinging.  Then, after that adventure, it was time to do my cooking for the week.  I pull up a stool for J to stand on so he can learn about cooking and help stir things.  Basically, he wants to be involved so I try to keep him safely involved, plus it gives me an excuse to pretend I’m hosting a (very messy) cooking show on The Food Network.  I totally keep up a running commentary on everything I’m doing and everything he’s doing.  After he finished helping add the garlic into the vegetable mix for our pot pie, I took the giant jar of minced garlic back to the fridge.

“And it’s very important to clean up while you cook, J, because that way you never have a great big…”

And then, in slow motion, I realized I was holding the garlic by the little blue twisty lid.

And the lid wasn’t on the jar all the way.

And all my dreams of Eric Northman coming to visit flew out the window because there. was. garlic. everywhere.  It was all down the door of the refrigerator.  It was covering the french doors to the dining room. It was all over the carpet in the dining room.  And there were pieces of minced garlic and garlic juice all over the kitchen floor.  It smelled like Italy in my house.  And not one of the nice areas.

So by the end of the day, I found myself sitting on the sofa with J, watching Tangled.  Smelling like dirty dog hair covered garlic and looking like a leper.

I felt like a total common sense failure.  To be honest, I felt like a total failure period.  The patio was half stained and half dirty.  The kitchen still smelled faintly of garlic.  The sink was over flowing with dishes and all of my muscles hurt from painting and scrubbing floors so I wasn’t in the mood to deal with them.  I was doubting all ability to do anything properly, and thinking about all the other things I’ve managed to screw up since starting on this single motherhood gig.  My work is suffering due to my mind being pre-occupied with divorce. I mowed the lawn in freaking flip flops… I felt like a total failure.

And then J, sitting next to me on the sofa, looked over at me.

“I love you Momma! I love you!” He grinned and shouted the words at me, throwing his arms around my chest and leaning his head against my shoulder.  And every time there was a lull in the movie conversation, he would repeat, wrapping his arms around me and snuggling in close.

So… despite all the madness, I’m doing something right.

Even though I look and smell totally ridiculous while doing it.


6 Responses to “Intelligence is relative…”

  1. New Mom on the Blog
    August 1st, 2011 @ 9:10 am

    Could our blogs today BE more similiar?
    We’re in sync you and me, Law Momma.

    What a day.
    Were you happy with the way the car port turned out?

  2. monk aka Blanche
    August 1st, 2011 @ 9:31 am

    i love it! this sounds like the perfect day.

  3. KLZ
    August 1st, 2011 @ 10:55 am

    We should compare weekends. We’re two (non)failures of a kind.

  4. beachmum
    August 1st, 2011 @ 12:55 pm

    These are the days you’ll remember. Sounds like a sweet ending to a pretty unlucky day. May I suggest putting out pans of coffee grounds, baking soda or kitty litter to try to absorb the smell? Just a thought. And when I have hard to get off stuff on my hands I use a salt scrub (usually reserved for pedicures). Not sure if that would have helped or not.

  5. pinkflipflops
    August 1st, 2011 @ 1:25 pm

    haha oh brother.

  6. Mary
    August 1st, 2011 @ 6:30 pm

    What a great ending to a no-good day. On a somewhat unrelated note, if you haven’t read it, a few of my divorced friends highly recommend the book, “Vicki Lansky’s Divorce Book for Parents.” She’s written a number of books on healthy eating, potty training, etc., and the divorce book is apparently great. It sounds like you’re doing amazingly well considering, but a good book never hurt anyone!

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