Chaos Stops For Nothing

If I am friends with you on Facebook and you were on it yesterday, you might have seen this status from me:

Wow. Just wow. It’s a patio not a meth lab. In the grand scheme of things, this is what we worry about?

I am not usually a vague poster on FB. I usually just post my blog or a question about local things on my personal page and on the blog page, I’ll post my blog links and sometimes stuff involving Leo or the kids. Let me back up a moment so you can fully understand why I posted this as my status.

Leo left for a business trip at 6am yesterday morning. I made sure he left me a charger for my phone and as it turns out, I should have checked a few more things. Nico woke up feeling sick again so it was decided that he would stay home again. With everything else going on, I thought it was insignificant to discuss that Belle tested positive for the flu on Saturday and the doctor put them all on Tamiflu. Belle was home on Friday and Monday. Tommy came home on Monday, Nico came home on Tuesday and was home again yesterday.

Tommy yelled down at about 8am for me to check his 5 paragraph essay before I printed it out. Now, if you read this, you know that checking 5 paragraph papers in the midst of morning chaos isn’t going to be a good thing. As I looked for the computer that his paper was on, I realized that…yes…Leo took it with him to Toronto. Tommy freaked out as I emailed his teacher. Belle freaked out because she needed to work on her paper on that computer. Two freak outs and it was only 8:00.

Then, Belle…my sweet Belle. She came downstairs to see if the Elf came. My friends, I suck on so many levels at the Elf stuff that just when I thought her status rivaled the Tooth Fairy’s as the forgotten magic maker, I manage to suck a little more. I have a Target bag full of stuff from the dollar part to have the Elf leave. I forgot to move her and leave something (forget about answering her letter or even eating the candy that was left…there wasn’t time). I grabbed two things and threw them under the tree. Belle came up and said, “Um…it’s great that KiKi came but um…these chapsticks are open and I think used. You left me open chapsticks.” I looked in horror and yes…yes I did. My answer to her was, “I didn’t leave anything. KiKi did.” If she is going to play that game, I am going to play it right back. Ugghhh…30 years from now when she is in therapy, I fully expect how bad I sucked at the Elf to be a topic that comes up. I mean…I left my daughter used chapsticks as a gift from the Elf.

They went off to school and I got a phone call from Nicor gas. There was a problem with our bill. Why? Why when Leo is not here does that happen? I left him a nasty text (this making a world a better place did not include mad texts to the hubby) and he said he’d take care of it. I need to be more Lynette Scavo and less June Cleaver. I know. I am working on it. *Edited to add that it was Nicor’s mistake.

Nico let me know that his raffle ticket money for basketball was due today. It’s hard asking people for money around the holidays. So guess what that meant? I had to buy the tickets that he did not sell which was $100 worth. Can I ask why the sports people don’t just tell us that it will cost $350 for our kid to play and to give them a check in the beginning instead of want money a week before Christmas? Oh, to stress us out? Well, then they are succeeding. Okay, so next year, I’ll know this and allocate that much money but that doesn’t help me right now, today…a week before Christmas.

I was sitting and talking to Nico over lunch when I saw (and may lightning strike me if I am lying), a truck come to a screeching halt in front of my house. I said to Nico, “Uh oh, someone is mad.” And that someone marched (I swear, I am not exaggerating) up my driveway and banged on my door. When I opened my door, I was greeted by the inspector from our village and he immediately started yelling (okay, maybe not yelling so much as talking in a raised voice) about an “illegal patio” and “property lines” and “permits” and blah, blah, blah. He ordered the men to stop working and said he’d be back in a half hour and if they weren’t gone, I was “in big trouble and will be fined”. He might have said some other things but I cut him off and with a shaky voice (I am a rule follower and getting into trouble makes me feel like I am 10 years old again) said, “I’ll take care of it. Calm down.”

He saw that he was being a complete asshat and apologized letting me know that it was his day off so he was aggravated to have to come to my house to tell me of my “illegal” activities (okay, I made up the illegal activities part). Well, guess what, Buddy? This is no picnic for me either. Blame the big tattle tale in the neighborhood. Speaking of which, it is an awful feeling not knowing who ratted you out. There was a blue car that drove slowly past my house about 5 times yesterday with an elderly man in it craning his neck to look at my yard. It freaked me out a little and made me mad so I went and stood on my walk way and stared back at him. He left and I didn’t see him again but it felt very “Big Brother watching”. In 42 years, other than drink when I was in college and not yet 21, I have never done anything illegal and THIS is what I get in trouble for? An illegal patio. Wow.

After mad, little inspector guy left, I had to go tell the two guys in back that they had to stop working and that they had to leave. In moments of panic, which I was in, I forget all the Spanish I know and am reduced to what I know from Dora which is pretty much colors and numbers. So I did what every smart person does. I spoke louder and slower in the language that they still didn’t understand. When that didn’t work, because why would it, I started to act out what I wanted them to do. I looked like a complete idiot. That and what they saw when they busted me doing Zumba should solidify their opinion of the American housewife which is I am sure that we are nut jobs…and they aren’t wrong.

They left after the boss guy came and said he’d take care of it. I don’t know what that means but I hope Leo is home when it happens.

In this digital age that we live in, I did what any freshman girl would do…not just any freshman but a scorned freshman…I posted a nasty status on Facebook.  I got some support from friends and neighbors and then I did say this:

 I do find it funny that a lot of dogs can freely take a crap on my yard and no one gets in trouble but I try and make my yard look nice and they are all over me. I also said something about not having the time to care about what others are doing to their own house.

Why in the world do people care what the Hell anyone does to their own houses? I can see in the front. Fine, I’ll give you that but in a fenced in yard? C’mon, people…get a life (wow, I haven’t used that phrase since a a floor monitor took my id for belting out George Michael’s “I Want Your Sex” back in college in 1989 and no, it wasn’t just me. It was a group of us. We were wild like that). After a friend (thanks D.W.) helped me look up codes and rules and whatever of this town, I saw that just about everyone I know has innocently broken one of their rules in the interest of making their house a nice place or even a functional place to live. We are supposed to register if we want to work on our own house for anything. We are lucky they aren’t fining us all over the place for mowing our lawn because “A homeowner engaged in constructing, altering, or repairing his/her personal residence or lot shall not be considered a contractor and should fill out the Home Owner’s Letter of Intent.” How many of us have repaired things in our “personal residence” and didn’t think twice? Hmmm…maybe that is why Leo never fixes anything. He is just following these dumb rules. Rules that I am sure no one reads or follows. I don’t care if it is just a formality. It’s a pain in the ass. It’s just like when I was younger. Everyone was doing things we weren’t supposed to and not getting caught but I knew that if I did, I’d be the one that would get caught. Over 40 years later, it still holds true.

I had to go to my mom’s to pick up the raffle tickets that are due today and then I went to Target to pick up the rest of Nico’s very expensive flu medicine and had the high hopes of doing a few good deeds. I really wanted to feel good after having the day I had. Let me tell you, people are mean. There were at least three people who were just awful. I wanted to ask one woman if her face would crack if she smiled because I made the unfortunate decision to walk next to her and smile at her. She scowled at me. I tried smiling at the crabby man who tsked me when my cell phone rang with my kids on the other end and I had to stop to answer it but he was not going to be smiled at. I wanted to ask the very nasty woman whose cart I accidentally touched when both our carts were going down an aisle (in opposite directions) if she thought rolling her eyes and pinching her lips together was a good look or even necessary but I did not. I, instead, bought a gift card with the intention of leaving it. The guy at the register looked at me like I had five heads so I chalked it up to it not being the right time or right person and went home. Now I wonder, find a different cashier or tape it to a box of diapers with a note that says “Merry Christmas from Santa”?

It shouldn’t be that hard to do something nice.

Alison from Writing, Wishing, if you are reading…my ordinary is definitely back. Whether I want it to or not, chaos stops for nothing.



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  1. First of all, I honestly CANNOT believe they made you stop building your patio. I mean, seriously, SERIOUSLY?! Do people not enough to keep them busy right now? I am SO SORRY. I hate the fact that you are surrounded by so much chaos so close to what is already the most chaotic time of year anyway. Good Lord.
    Secondly, buying the gift card is SO SWEET, and you should be really proud of yourself for that. Just an idea, but is there a part of your town where you know people are struggling…could you anonymously leave it in a mailbox for someone to find? Or maybe see if your church can include it in someone’s angel tree gift?
    Finally, you are the greatest. :)-Ashley
    thedoseofreality recently posted..Oh Yeah, We Did The Oprah Ugly CryMy Profile

    • What’s worse is that it happened the day after the neighborhood went caroling and it makes me wonder if one of the neighbors called. Leo thinks it is someone that isn’t a fan of the blog and read about it on here.

      That is a good idea about putting it in a mailbox. I have to think about that but I like it.

      I love that you think I am the greatest. Right back at ya! :)

  2. Can you ever catch a break?? Seriously. People need to mind their own business. Who cares if you’re building a patio?!

    Also? You and I are the same person. When I see people scowling or rolling their eyes it takes everything in me not to make a smart remark. One of these days my mouth is going to get me in big trouble.

    Oh, and the gift card on the diapers? Brilliant! That would make my week if I went to the store and found that! (in related news, is it too soon to potty train my 6 month old? Yes? Ugh.)
    Kimberly recently posted..You Are My HopeMy Profile

    • I want to say that I am hopeful that eventually yes, I will catch a break but I’m starting to wonder.

      I love when you say we are the same person because you are pretty cool. :)

      I was leaning toward diapers, too because I know that would be awesome if I ever found something like that because, yes, my almost 3 year old is nowhere near being out of them.

  3. First of all I can’t stop laughing that Kiki didn’t get moved and brought used chapstick. (but seriously, Kiki brings presents? Oh, girl…your elf is really high maintenance!) But I doubled over with the “making the world a better place doesn’t extend to mad texts to hubands”. Bwahahaha! But the missing paper…and the baseball money…and the bill…and the PATIO…why do days like this always happen when the husband is out of town. WHY??!!

    I am so you. I am a rule follower. But it’s also true that, if I do ANYTHING non-rule abiding…even if there are 100 other people doing it, too…I will be the one busted. It’s just the way it goes.

    I know your Target gift card deed will work!! :) –Lisa
    The Dose of Reality recently posted..Oh Yeah, We Did The Oprah Ugly CryMy Profile

    • KiKi brings small gifts because everyone else’s freaking elves bring stuff so my darling daughter was feeling like we had a defective elf. Ugh…the web we weave…

      I honestly love that I made you laugh with this. I feel like if I can make one person laugh by what seriously made me want to cry, then I’ll laugh, too instead of giving in to crying. So thank you.

  4. Oh AnnMarie. Even in the midst of chaos, you manage to make me smile. I’m sorry people were shitty. Tis the season?

    I’m glad your ordinary is back. Though yeah, think you could still catch a break.
    Happy Holidays!
    Alison recently posted..Happy Holidays!My Profile

  5. Well I’ll be damned… I pictured every lousy minute of your day as I read through all the happenings… GOOD GRIEF!!! What is it with people???? Doesn’t anyone know how to be kind anymore? ESPECIALLY to YOU!!! Aw man….I think us friends of yours should just show up at your doorstep and sing pretty Christmas Carols and give YOU a gift card, some hot tea and a hug. :)
    Chris Carter recently posted..I Want To Be Mary…My Profile

  6. The elf story is hilarious, definitely something you will look back on & laugh about :)

    I am so sorry that you have to deal with that. I can not believe (well I guess I can believe it) people actually have nothing better to do with their time than to worry about what others are doing!! We had a horrible neighbor at the condo we lived in before we bought our house that we are in now & our neighbor actually called our real estate agent to make sure when we sold the condo, in the paperwork it “had” to state information regarding a common area (even though my husband & I paid for an entire yard to be landscaped out of our pocket) & he wanted to make sure information about our fence was put in there & dog info….it was horrible, he was making it that much harder to sell the condo. I just don’t get why people do this type of stuff.

    I also agree with you that people can be so mean & awful, I don’t get it!!!!

    Oh & I love the gift card idea!!!

    Hope your week is beginning to look up :)
    Andrea recently posted..random from last weekMy Profile

    • I know what you mean. I keep asking myself the very same thing. Why in the world do people care so much? It is just a patio and since we are very likely to be the last owners of this house, who cares???

      Nico had a good game, Tommy only lost by 2, Belle is going to help me bake and Gia is napping so things are looking up. :)


  1. […] a big house with acres and acres of sprawling land (and afford someone to take care of it since we can’t even seem to get a patio built-in our dinky yard). I fell in love with Texas many, many years ago over the course of a few trips. I didn’t […]

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