Tuesday, December 31, 2013

I Love -

Tom T. Hall sings a sweet song where he lists things he loves. It includes things like puppies and bourbon and rain and squirrels and more eloquently written sentences then anything you are about to read.  This is going to sound totally dumb, but I think its a super Tired Girl activity to keep a running list of things we love.  
I also love cardigans - not the sexiest
of  wardrobe pieces - but whatever - this one is old from J.Crew

The thing on the list are not the big things in life -  I wouldn't add my family to this list or my health  - this is just for the extra loves. 

It's fun when you come across something you love and since you are conscious of it, it's a happy and easy way to have a "moment," like a private reunion between you and something you love. An invisible tip of the hat of appreciation.  It really sounds stupid, but its a teeny way to enjoy the world  without any energy.

The list is not static - items can come and go.

I love dogs.
I love humans that love animals.
I love my doctor.
I love it when people keep the lights on their Christmas tree on during the day.
I love macaroni and cheese.
I love when people say "I know! Right?"
I love beautiful fabric.
I love Paris.
I love the commercial where James Earl Jones and Malcom McDowell use text lingo like "Amazeballs" and "Toats McGoats.  

Here it is - if you would rather watch 30 seconds of super clever writing than do anything else :

I wouldn't mind trying out
the life that goes with this cardigan.

That is just the beginning of my list.

I highly recommend you keep a running list of your loves, in your head atleast. In this new year add some things to your "I Love" list and enjoy the moment when you come across one of your loves. 

Happy New Year Tired Girls. 

One last thing - I unfortunately have the "I don't like" list also - I try not to be conscious of it, but it's there anyway. I don't like when people wave me on in a four-way stop when it's MY turn - they aren't doing me a favor by LETTING me go when it's my turn to go!!  That list is more complicated and eye-roll inducing, so I concentrate on the happier one.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

How to be good at grief -

Being good at helping other people grieve is, unfortunately, an important skill to have. 
When we witness friends and loved ones suffering or grieving we want to act and often we don't know what to do. The fear of doing the wrong thing in terrible situations is enough to cripple some of us from doing anything. 

I have several friends that have graciously shared their opinions about what helped them when they experienced incredible loss and trauma and I have combined it with my opinions as well.

For the record “grief” is anything that makes a loved one suffer. We all know it when we see it and feel it. We all know the hierarchy of grief – what is the worst compared to something not as bad. Grief is grief though, no matter how the world categorizes certain types of loss.

1) Act quickly – Our own sadness and our uncertainty sometimes gives us pause. A phone call and voicemail is not recommended. Chances are they don’t want to “talk.”  An immediate text, email, facebook or note in the mail is perfect.  Going to their home is important too and I’ll talk about that in number 3.

I once waited two days before going to a friend’s house when her daughter was killed in a car accident.  That felt soon to me, because I didn’t want to “intrude,” and it wasn’t soon enough.  Immediate is best.

2) Do not tell them anything, except:
- how much you love them,
-are thinking of them
-and are so upset for them.

I think things go wrong when people are “told” things – the person/animal is better off, not suffering, God has a plan, you will get over this, it will be okay, it’s not fair, they are with God now, you deserve better, it’s not your fault, etc.  Less is more. Their religion and how they choose to categorize the loss is up to them and maybe you at a later time depending on your relationship.

The goal now is to comfort them immediately, not define the loss. No matter anything about the loss – you are sorry, you love them, and you are here for them.  Period.

3) Go and see them if possible. 

- Go as soon as possible – even if it is to stop by their house on your way home, give them a hug and tell them you will be back in two days to help. Or stop by, give them a hug and leave. See them immediately if possible and physically hug them.

When we found out we were not going to be able to adopt the baby we had waited 8 months for, we were in shock.  A dear friend of mine came over to our house and practically walked in. She hugged me and wanted to know every detail. If she had called and asked if she could come over or just told me she was on her way I would have said “No, please don’t come.” I felt a mess and didn’t feel like visiting.  But having her just do it felt so good.  I had several do this when Ralph died as well, and it is weird to me how comforting it was to have people in my home. 

- Bring something and not food. I learned this from my friends who lost children.  They didn’t want to eat and there was so much food in the house.  I was told that everyday items were more help (which is our goal). Toilet paper, paper towels, laundry detergent, Ziploc bags, etc. 

-Do something, don’t ask – If there is a key person at the house that is doing a lot, ask them, otherwise, feel free to wipe down the counters, take out the trash, pet and play with the pets. Hand them a drink, make sure they are sitting down when talking to other visitors, answer the door, etc.

If you don’t feel close enough to some one, then just go to the house, hug them, tell them how sorry you are, tell them you will check on them in a couple of days and then leave.

If going to see them is not feasible then mailing a note**/card/flowers/gift/something is nice. None of it will bring someone back or make cancer go away, but it could never hurt to make someone feel loved - in my opinion.

4). Follow up.  Checking on them each week or a few times a month, or a year, or every day, etc - depending on the trauma - is thoughtful. It acknowledges the pain and gives them a chance to talk if they wish.  If it is too painful they will say that too and you can move on easily and talk about other things - acknowledging  something significant and also a distraction are, in my opinion, two very helpful things for people to do. 

I typically deal with most things in my life with humor, but sometimes there is simply no place for jokes or lightening the mood. I hate those places!

** Writing a note can be REALLY HARD!!  Sometimes I just stare at my blank note card. I believe the best thing to say in a note is what I talk about in number 2. Don't say anything except that you love them and you are sorry and you are thinking of them and you are there for them. Death/Cancer/Loss/Divorce/Anything terrible - no matter what - just tell someone you are thinking of them.

What in the hey does this have to do with being a Tired Girl??  I don't know.  I just know that I have needed this skill a lot in the last few years and thought other people may too, so I saved up some energy, did some research and made these Cliff's Notes on how we can help friends and loved ones.  

Anyone have anything to add about this?

P.S.  Are you still reading this? The absolute worst thing to do is nothing. Our discomfort in the face of something terrible needs to be gotten over for the other person's sake.  And on the flip side we don't know exactly what hurts people.  I'd rather make too big of a deal of a break-up or the loss of a hamster than to neglect the hearts of people I care about.   

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Outfits that are too nice, but really aren't -

I often over think what clothes to put on each day. Yes, with all the problems in the world and decisions to be made about my career, my health and my fertility and I get stumped on which top to throw on to go to the store.  I did discuss one of my most lazy clothes plans here:  "Jeans make an outfit." 

When I taught school I was pretty good at it. I often started with my shoes to decide how comfortable I felt like being that day (eventually the answer every day was VERY, SERIOUSLY comfortable - I don't even care if I look like a monster) and as I was on my feet a lot as a teacher I liked to vary my shoes so I didn't turn in to a hump back or something that feels like an urban legend, but just in case I wanted to avoid. I am already off track. 

So when I taught school my wardrobe was mostly easy: 1) School clothes. 2) At home clothes. 3)  And being-out-in-public-with-adults-that-won’t- sneeze-on-you clothes (those are the really special items). 

Now that I work from home I strangely over-think the ol' wardrobe.  Though I like to share that I wear my pj's every day I actually don't wear them all day every day (except for lots of times when I  do – and then I yell down to my husband when he gets home "No Judgment - I am still in my pj's!"  

If I admit that I know it is wrong, then there is less chance there will be an intervention. And I am off track again. 

So when I put on actual clothes I make the mistake of SAVING my "good clothes" for some other imaginary event. Or I think “well it's 3pm - I am running errands and then to Publix and then I will just work some more when I get home and make dinner and hang out and go to bed, so I should wear some B team item of clothing.”  I stand in my closet and judge my clothes to see who is nice enough to go in public, but not nice enough to be wasted for some other occasion.  Eventually some "I like, but I don't love it" type top is chosen and I cruise around town in it with my jeans and feel the teeniest bit frumpy, but okay.

I have decided this is totally dumb and I am going to stop doing it. Life is too short or too long to wear clothes that make us feel like butt. 

So my plan: I will slowly and systematically eliminate the clothing that is not bad, but is not that great.  If I only have nice choices then I can only look nice, despite my best efforts to sabotage myself. I am not yet ready however to eliminate some of my less attractive pj's. A shirt with a hole and a stain and two sizes too big still has value to me. AND I am off track again. 

This shirt was initially deemed too nice,
because I am crazy. On a side note I am sorry
I stink at photo taking.
I have a good cause to donate my clothes to and so I don't feel bad - it's a great cycle of life.  A shirt that is perfectly fine and makes me feel 83 years old will be loved by someone else and will raise money for a good cause or whatever.  Sometimes I feel like I practically have to close my eyes to drop clothes in the give-away bag or else I will grab them out and think things like "well, sometimes it's nice to have a shirt that is way too small... oh wait no it's not - give it away!!"  Agh!

I have several pairs of legitimately good jeans that I wear almost every day - and I love them and they fit great and I don't think twice about pulling them on every day and not saving them and some day when they wear out, there will be a new style or my toosh will be a different shape or whatever, and I will buy NEW jeans.  I am trying to have this same feeling with tops and other items. 

So I am getting drastic with my closet, because I know my tendency to go toward the cheap and ill-fitting top, so if I no longer own that top I won't be able to wear it.  

As a Tired Girl I work to make my day and life run as smoothly as possible.  As you know - one of my favorite quotes - "When you look good you feel good, and when you fell good you do good," I wrote about that theory here : "If you look good."

 Eliminating the items that get in my way and I don't love makes this Tired Girl less tired believe it or not. 

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Robbed -

While visiting a dear friend in Atlanta this fall, I was robbed.  I made the poor choice to leave my purse in the back seat of her car while we stepped away for a few minutes.  In that time the jerks smashed her car window, swiped my purse and started the process of trying to make some transactions.  While my friend smartly called the cops (the police report helped me get on the plane), all I could do was stand there, numb, and think about how I was going to get on the plane in an hour to go home. I momentarily forgot that my whole identity was in that purse, and when I finally got practical I called my husband and he had all my cards, etc. shutdown in a matter of seconds. Go Joe!!

I made it on the plane after lots of stops through TSA. And was humbled by the fact that I didn't have any chapstick or even a dollar to my name to buy a water.  It was a real lesson to have NOTHING for a few minutes - not a real study, or view at how others truly live, but still thought-provoking to me.  

this happened - 

ANYWAY, my point in writing this is not to look for sympathy as it was my own dumb move to leave my purse in her car, but to share one small  Tired Girl tip. 

Make a copy - right now- of the front and back of your drivers license.  Do it.  Having a copy of  both sides of your license will enable you to order a new license online (at least in Florida) and not go through all the steps of having to obtain a new one.  You can also use the copy when the original is lost (or brutally ripped from your innocence).  Just to show who you are - just in case. You could also take a photo of the front and back and email the photos to yourself and then erase the photo off your phone. 

Without an ID or any credit/debit cards you are crazy screwed though. And as a Tired Girl the last thing I was interested in (while still traumatized) was making my daily routine infinitely more complicated with stops at every federal agency.  I was super effected by the vulnerability I felt after this criminal act.  I needed more time to plan my future agoraphobic lifetsyle and less time spent re-creating my identity.  The process to get a new license (if I couldn't have just ordered a new one) would require several different forms of ID - one of which is a Social Security card - which by bum luck I had just put in my wallet for another reason and not removed when I went to Atlanta. So I didn't even have that on my side. Passport was expired, etc. - you see where this was going. 

I won't bore you with the details of the tribulations of losing your whole wallet, but as you can guess it is no picnic.  I did have the presence of mind to call my doctors office to see if they had a copy of my ID in my file.  They did and I was on my way to simply re-ordering a new ID and then everything could follow easily. As soon as I got my new card I made a copy of the front and back as well as my husband's and several other cards as well.

A few months later I still have to remind myself that it was just "stuff" that I lost - but it was stuff I liked and valued and some of it is irreplaceable.  My poor friend's window part was more complicated then you would have thought as well and she drove around windowless for two weeks.  The two people that broke her window and stole my purse were arrested and in are still in jail as they had prior issues.  So what a lot of energy wasted for everyone. 

Oh one last teeny thing - I also went to buy new face powder and lipgloss that was lost with my purse and I had no idea what those two perfect colors were. Sand 2 and Beige 1 and Glimmer Glint and Bubble Blitz look surprisingly similar in the florescent lights of the store.  So, some day if you are stuck in traffic, or waiting in line or avoiding your work responsibilities then make a note of the items in your purse and their colors, etc.  And also don't put your purse in the back seat of a car and also just don't leave your house.

Anyone else have a happy tip after important items are stolen?   

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Really dumb -

This is incredibly dumb and the Katherine Grahams, Hilary Clintons, and Sally Rides of the world are disappointed in me right now. 

But, anyway. I pull the labels off everything I can, to make them look prettier. If toothpaste would cooperate I would do that too. It makes me less tired to be surrounded by beauty.  Some things will never be beautiful, but I do what I can.

yes, I photographed this.

Also dumb is this meme, but I like it: 

Judging my own self  - 

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Foil is your friend -

Since I last wrote about a Tired Girl enemy, I thought I would remind us of a VERY IMPORTANT PERSON (not a person) in the Tired Girl world.  As us Tired Girls take on the holidays, remember foil is in our corner. And slippers and sweatshirts and not judging ourselves harshly, and cinnamon rolls.   

original post on 9.16.2012 -
Foil is your friendalthough unfortunately it is not exactly the Earth's friend.  I am a friend to the Earth in so many way, but not when it comes to foil.
I just can't quit you, foil. I use it almost every evening for dinner.  It allows me to not wash a pan (so I'm saving water right, right??) I line cookie sheets or brownie style pans to cook items of dinner on.  After dinner I will wrap up the leftover meat or items in the foil, stash in the fridge and voila no pan to wash and no plasticware to dirty with leftovers either. 

Sometimes the foil is unusable to wrap up food items and so it gets thrown out right away.  I do a rain dance (in my head) and think of something else to recycle as I chuck it in the trashcan and relish in the possible freedom of my evening.

These are home-made pizzas on foiled cookie sheets - 
these pizzas look better when they have been cooked.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

"Clutter is the enemy" -

"Clutter is the enemy." My mom read these words to me over the phone the other day - she was reading parts of a book she just got (Remodelista by Julie Carlson).  Listening to those words made my eyes go all squinty and I immediately started looking around the room I was sitting in.  

Clutter - for Tired Girls especially - is your enemy.

A book I have not read but got me thinking - 
So, I am innocently cleaning up after dinner and trying to find the right lid to the right food storage container, and cussing ensues because "Where the eff is the blue bumpy rectangular lid that goes on this thing??" Maybe we (read: me in this situation) even dump the contents in to a container where the lid is a sure thing, but then there is an extra dish to cram in the dishwasher.

Or you are heading out the door in the morning and you dig through your underwear drawer casting aside underwear that won't work for that day (or maybe any day) - too tight, too lose, those itch, the bow on those makes me look bumpy, ugh a thong, those move around all day, and so on, until you finally scrounge up a pair of "good" underwear and swear that you will throw in a load of clothes and undies when you get home that day, and of course you forget, and by the next morning you are forced to dig deeper in to the drawer or settle for one of the less popular candidates.  

These two scenarios and twenty others I can think of stand between me not resting, and me resting or doing something fun.

Clutter - for Tired Girls especially - is your enemy.

"So, great Tired Girl," you say, "I am convinced already, now tell me exactly where and when I will find the time and energy to totally de-clutter so I can have a happier existence."  

My de-cluttered underwear drawer
bought me two extra minutes which
was time I spent on the internet finding
charming photos like this one.
"Not possible," I say. I agree that the reason we are cluttered in the first place is who wants to spend their time de-cluttering the tupperware area of your home or feeling the emotional tug when you go to clean out your pj drawer and those one pj's that don't fit right anymore used to be your favorite and - you know where this is going. I am not talking about major organization here - just more basic streamlining of stuff we use all the time. 

Here are a few Tired Girl ideas though:

1) One in - one out. How fun to come home from shopping and hang up your two new cute tops and put your new flip-flops in your closet. At the very same moment you put your new things away you pull out the same number of old things. Joe and I were GREAT (just kind of good) at this at our old house where we had teensy closets.  There was just no room at a certain point.  So, anyway, two new cute tops are getting hung up, and two tops you don't like as much, have to go. You don't like walk them to Goodwill that moment, but you drop them in the "giveaway" bag you have somewhere in your house  (mine is in my closet). If you really really miss one of the tops you chose to go to a good home you can always go get it out of the give away bag and replace it with another shirt. One in - one out goes for pretty much everything - nail polish, underwear, husbands, jeans, tablecloths, tupperware containers, things with the chevron pattern (man do I love it but there is probably such a thing as too much), and of course paleo cookbooks (you really only need zero of these).  

2) Have a CAUSE that you care about. I love DOGS!! (and all animals). So for a long time all of my household stuff went to my Humane Society Thrift Shop. It was a little bit of a pain to drop stuff off there, but I made do and I loved that instead of money I was giving stuff which made them money. It was easier to part with things when I liked where it was going. Now I have a friend that takes anything I have and does good stuff with it. She does a lot with her church and she gets my items to whoever may need things. 

About a year ago, after I had given her a whole bunch of clothes, and she told me about a young girl that picked out an outfit from my clothes  - she told me the specific pieces she chose - and that the girl had worn the outfit to church two weeks in a row.  I LOVE that stuff!! That made me feel like a stinking hero, and now every time I am on the fence with an item I think about the hopefully good home it will find and I drop it in my giveaway bag.  Habitat for Humanity, tons of different churches, Goodwill, Salvation Army, Hospice, women's shelters, Boys and Girls Club - and on forever with good causes - find the ways that makes you smile (cheesy alert) and start a bag.

3) Have a giveaway bag or box or corner or whatever. When you come across something that gets in your way - that one tupperware container with no lid, grab it and do a once over in the area you are in - grab anything that stands out and then put them in the giveaway bag. Once the bag is full, start a new one and put the old one in your car. Then you have a better chance of dropping the bag off. 

4) Focus on high traffic areas. It would be awesome if my photos from high school were organized in a way besides being thrown in a box with photos from other times of my life, but that is not really something I am "in to."  I am "in to" finding a matching set of shoes, a lid to a tupperware container, my stock pot for soup making, my bills to pay, and clean pjs every night. Don't get bogged down in doing your whole stinking existence - just de-clutter the high traffic areas of your life.  The places where you get caught up, so to speak. 

Those are my Tired Girl strategies to make it palatable and easy to keep the clutter away. Maybe you love to read about de-cluttering strategies on Pinterest (I do not) or you are happy to schedule one whole day every so often to purge the whole house (I do not) or you like organize every inch of your life you weirdo (I do not).

Here are a few other posts on similar topics - 

Drowning in mail - and how to save your marriage
Closet organization Tired Girl style - 

Garage Sale - don't do it but if you do -
*OH!! - one last word about de-cluttering.  When it comes to Christmas decorating I seem to be  in kind of a hurry each year, and in my storage containers of holiday decor there were old keepsakes that I don't really put out, mixed with my tree skirt, mixed with cards from others from years past - in other words - total chaos.  So, at some point - I blocked out when and how because it was so boring - I "de-cluttered" my holiday stuff. Putting my most valued players in the same containers, and sorting them a bit within that - tree stuff, mantle stuff, other stuff, garlands, etc. Then all the other things that I haven't put out in years or don't use every year or whatever got put in other containers. Oh my God I KNOW this is like seriously basic stuff, but I just figured it out so I am sharing.   So, this way, I don't have to trash my house by pulling out all of my Christmas stuff at once. I can pull out the mantle and garland container and do that stuff and go from there. I think I hear harp music this plan is so awesome to me.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Eye cream -

Here is the deal with eye cream. It may or may not work and we will never really have the answer (once we are wrinkly we may think, "Oh crud that stuff didn't work," but maybe it DID and we are less wrinkly than we would have been - and maybe not, or maybe if we had used a better brand or more or whatever and this goes on forever).  

I don't think it can hurt to use it though. Lotion seems to soften things and softer things mostly look nice.  So here are the Tired Girl's tips for eye cream:

1) Use it - it doesn't matter what brand, just put some kind of cream around your eyes before bed at night.  Don't get it in there though.

2). Use your ring finger and tap the cream on and around your eyes - so that you don't mess up your eyes by putting too much pressure on them and all that - it's just the most gentle way to do it.

That's it. 

Well one more thing - I keep eye cream by my bed (because I like to hurry and lay down in the evenings, so it's one less thing to do standing in the bathroom, that I can instead do lying in bed). I also keep some by my computer in my office and in my travel bag. I have different brands everywhere, but I think if I have access to the stuff I will use it. I talk about that idea with other supplies - here. 

There is some dog slobber hiding here in places too, so don't look too close. Here is my Olay cream.

Here is my Yes to Blueberries Cream.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Tired Girl memory making, with children you know -

"Who wants to do some arts and crafts?"  A sentence that makes children squeal and Tired Girls cringe.  

This holiday season you will possibly be around: your own children, grandkids, kids' friends, neighbor kids, nieces and nephews, step-kids, random children around your home you don't know who they belong to or how they got there. 
Click here to read about it on amazon.com
Hand Made Kids Art: 12 days of HolidayCrafting for Toddlers and Preschoolers by Jamie Hand is a craft book for seriously Tired Girls, that have access to children, that they want to be with, entertain, educate or keep busy. It's a 2.99 download and as the author 1 says the supplies are probably things you have around your houseand the activity themselves are major bangs for your buck - a big time happy memory and very small energy output - the ideal Tired Girl activity.

Here is a conversation that could happen if you use this book: 
"Remember when you came to my house and we made reindeers Aunt Carrie?"
"That was so fun, right?". 
"I named mine Felix and you named yours Cupcake!!"
"Oh Cupcake, what a sweet soul he is.  How is Felix?"
"He loves living in the Christmas closet with the other ornaments.  He is very popular."
"Of course he is - you made him."
 "I love you Aunt Carrie, you are the most fun person."
 "Wonderful!! Now please bring me my Uggs and some of Aunt Carrie's special water, and pick out a movie to watch and then later we will pick out another craft to make. 3"

I love this one.
Have you ever done something nice, like
 planned a fun project and then when it came time to do said project you were so "done" that you were maybe grumpy with 
the innocent people that were happily participating. My poor little third graders may have met with this situation, but probably not since I would never do this. Except that I do.3

This book however is totally  Tired Girl worthy. It embodies what we want - we want to have fun and create memories for our family, but as Tired Girls our skin crawls at the idea of the amount of work a craft project (with children) inevitably would be.

This download (e-book) is a quality way to spend energy and time, but not too much energy and time is needed. You will have energy left to actually be sweet and enjoy the company of the children you do these crafts with. 

If you download it make sure you read the "Tips for Crafting and Creating Art with Young Artists.  I love what she says about "the process."4

.          .          .          .          .          .          .          .          .          .          .          .          .          .          .          .          .          .

1. my friend Jamie!  
2. depends on what kind of cool stuff you have
3. thank you for putting up with my fantasy discussion
4. no third graders were injured in reality or for hyperbole, I worked my toosh off for all my students and sometimes I - like all other adults - had my patience tested by the enthusiasm and listening skills of sweet children
5. we should all be so patient with ourselves

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Let your spouse help you -

This is one of the more condescending sentences I have thought in a while: Let your spouse help you. I bet every husband and wife out there is so pleased that I am giving permission to LET them HELP you. It is a real thing though that Tired Girls should consider.

Years ago Joe and I were having a "discussion" about "things" getting done, and in the heat of the moment he said these words:

"If you really want to help out around here you can ..." And then he named some meaningless chore that was hotly contested at the time.

We both froze at the ridiculousness of the statement - "If I really want to help out?" Where to begin.

Luckily - for everyone's safety - as the words left his lips and reached my ears we both started laughing. It is now a happy joke in our house - after working long days at home and at work we will, smilingly, say to each other "If you really want to help out around here you can --  and then we name some huge task like "invent something imperative that every human needs so we can retire wealthy tomorrow and watch movies all day."

The truth is though that it is important to let your spouse help out so that everyone can move along in life. When Joe loads the dishwasher and I later open the dishwasher, honestly, I flinch hard at the use of space and placement of the dishes. Is there a split second where I want to rearrange the whole place so things fit and work and all that? Yes! Is that a good use of time to RE-DO an already done task? Not really. Especially, for a Tired Girl. Instead I suck it up, close the dishwasher, hug and kiss him for loading it and we both skip off to relax or do something fun together. Not so much skipping as just walking, but it seems more carefree to skip. Joe has probably never skipped.

I am very sure that when I weed or do anything much in the yard he looks at my "done" area and flinches hard as well, but is thankful that one bed is less messy than it was, so he hugs and kisses me and thanks me for weeding and we drink a beer and lay in the grass and are done in the yard for the day.

I could give you a list of tasks like this - things the other person does in a way different than you would do and it's in the best interest of your life to let it go most of the time. Yes, there is a little training involved, so to speak, on everyone's part so that things get done well, but that can happen over time.  LOTS and LOTS of good can come from this and I am sure you can infer all the subtleties, and in the end, us Tired Girls get more done when we have help.
There is a scene in the movie "Date Night" with Tina Fey and Steve Carrell, where she is exhausted and he is trying to help her and she just plans to do it all herself, because he doesn't do the things "right." Later in the movie they get it all worked out, but don't make yourself go through all that.

Let some things go, let your spouse help.

Joe does our Christmas cards every year - here is our photo from 2006.
I fought him for the first few years trying to get in on the fun and and give my two cents.
Now, I have let go, it is all his, he does an awesome job,
and it's one less thing for the holiday season for me.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Garage sale - don't do it - but if you do -

A few years ago my husband I bought a model home - fully furnished. I felt like I got to move in to Barbie's Dream House.  I love it here!  Incidentally though, prior to moving in to this decked out house, we already had a home filled with our own belongings and furniture. 

Eventually we just owned one house with double the stuff.  We put A LOT of it at a consignment store where the lady promptly went out of business, donated everything of ours, and forgot to tell us any of it.  Heck of a business plan.

We have slowly donated and sold bits and pieces and absorbed the rest.  But my lovely home was bursting at the seams - yuck - mix in a huge dog, a busy husband, and a Tired Girl, and this place had the makings of a mildly gross place. 

So cut to the end of this summer where I decided I had SO MUCH sellable stuff that I would have a garage sale. My sneaking suspicion was that my stuff was not nice enough to bother with another consignment and too nice to really interest the garage sale crowd- people want a coffee maker for a quarter after all, regardless of how pricey it was at William Sonoma two weeks ago. 

Against my better judgement I was very un-Tired Girlish and had a stinking garage sale. 

Here are my tips:

1) Don't do it.  Load everything in a truck, drive it to a charity of your choice, unload it, cry a little on the way home, spin around your clutter -free home  -- Sound of Music style, and take a trip to Chicago with all the time you saved. 

Awethome thign.  I found this on Pinterest and ours did not look like that.
My dad made great arrow signs instead.
Otherwsie -

2)  Don't have one with your neighbors or your neighborhood - you don't need competition for your ratty cookie sheets.

3) Price everything.  Shoppers were "helping" me put things out the morning of our sale and luckily my stuff was all already priced.  Otheriwse I don't even want to think.

4) The smaller and more useful items went first. Cookies sheets worn hard, small appliances, and small furniture barely got set out before they were bought. 

5) DVD's - YES . VHS - NO.  Our DVD's went like crazy - even the really dumb movies.

6) Textiles were a NO.  I had several pretty and BARELY used and smelling good and high quality bedding sets, along with lots of table cloths, curtains, napkins, etc -- no one cared.

7) LOTS of people asked for jewelry of any kind, costume, junk, vintage, anything.

8) Make a deal or don't.  Doesn't matter. I had some people offer me less for things already priced low and most the time when I politely said "No, I will hold tight with my price for now."  They either bought it anyway at that price or someone else bought it for full price later. 

9) Some things I did negotiate price on, for whatever reason - either I liked their attitude or their dog was cute or their kid was polite or I had had a slow hour. Whatever.

10) Be ready to work hard, watch your items get flung around, and judged, and not make tons of money.  Enjoy that.

11) Put up signs when you are ready to start - the day of, put an ad in the paper and put an ad on Craig's List. 

12) Get your parents or close friends/family to help if they are handy like that. My parents kicked ass at this thing.

Good luck.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Sunday Struggle -

There really is a thing called Sunday Blues.  "Some" (someone who studies stuff) have linked it to a mild depression caused from different sleep patterns that occur at the end of the week or weekend (blah blah blah), and "others" (most people) just dread the work and reality of Monday.

Regardless of the level of love or trauma that my various jobs have caused ( I had nightmares about my boss from Neiman Marcus for years) I spend Sunday asking myself this question:

Do I work on Sunday so that Monday is easier?  (doing laundry, making my lunch or breakfsat or dinners for the week, doing actual work work to get "ahead," etc - I have never been ahead in my life incidentally - so that one was a joke choice).   

Or do I just relax and have fun and start Monday in a deficit?"  

What do you choose? Each Sunday is different for me.

A few Sundays ago I worked all morning, took the rest of the day off and had a fabulous Monday because of it, and this week's Sunday I had good intentions, but couldn't even get close to my computer, nor could I acknowledge the laundry or the kitchen - just had fun and cruised in to Monday.

Dramatic much?  Classic "My So Called Life" teen angst.
When I work on a Sunday I feel grumpy, but prepared for the week. When I just have fun all day Sunday I feel much happier, but I have to scramble more throughout the week. 

I do not have treatment or a solution , but as a Tired Girl I am simply acknowledging the existence of this stupid Sunday struggle.  

It is days like this that I think about the movie "Bernard and Doris"  in which Susan Sarandon plays the heiress Doris Duke (serious money) and one of the most interesting parts of the movie is watching her wealth - her unbelievable wealth.  

Every so often I let my brain go that place - like "I feel so pooped and achey what if I didn't actually have to make dinner, but instead sat down in my  reading room with my ipad and someone brought me a gin and tonic and a glass of water and some grapes and then, when it was time, I was served dinner by someone else who made it and cleaned it up and before bed someone also put the air on the temperature I like to sleep at - and you see where this is going.  Do people in that level of wealth have the Sunday struggle?  They may, but I would be willing to try it out and see.

Not a bad point. My only idea for a treatment was to make sure you have a dog or cat to snuggle with.  That makes everything better. And then I thought if you have kids they may bring you comfort as well and then I realized what about the poor spouse - if they are nice they too should bring happinees and comfort, so hopefully you have one you like.  Otherwise the companiionship of a dog or cat can really be the way to go.

As a Tired Girl what do you choose for your Sundays?
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