Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Bracing For Impact

My brother and sister-in-law and their two beautiful little boys are coming out to ye olde farm for a visit next week. These will be the first extended-stay guests that we've had in the new house, and therefore call for the first ever deep-cleaning of the new, 85 year-old house.

If I didn't hate well water before today (I did), I super, mega officially hate it now. I have to use scary chemicals that I abhor to get the gnarly rusty drip marks off of the bottom of my tub. We condition our water, but apparently enough iron remains that over the space of six months, it can accumulate enough to look like you've been showering in orange kool-aid.

I'm also going to use a little tax-return moolah to spring for a proper vacuum. I've been told that the Dyson pet hair model is the way to go. We don't have hairy indoor pets, but we do have a house full of individuals with eastern European genetics, so the pet hair function may come in handy after all. I am both scared and nerdily curious to see what and how much junk this thing pulls out of my carpets.

In addition to the sprucing up, I need to review my child-proofing. My nephews, God love them, will wait for the second you turn your back to take a pair of scissors to their socks (the 5 year old), draw on your Harley-Davidson with a sharpie (also the 5 year old) or attempt to fly, Batman-style off of the second floor balcony, using a sheet as his cape (come to think of it, that was the 5 year old too). Maybe I just need to hog-tie the big one and the little one and I will just hang out and snuggle?

So I'm in a bit of a nesting frenzy this week. I know that I'm going to drive myself (and by extension, Bill) nuts sweating the details right up until the minute that our guests arrive, but once the initial impression of the place is gelled in their minds, I instantly stop caring about the Martha details and just let it all go and enjoy their company. I'm really looking forward to our two families of four being one noisy herd of eight for a few weeks.

I especially like hanging with my nephews. I grew up in an all-girl house, and only having daughters myself, have sort of missed out on the boy experience. They are NUTS, and I love them for it. Maybe I can channel the energy of the 5-year old, aka, Sir Yaps A Lot, Mr. Sharpie, Doomed Batman, in a fruitful direction? What are the child labor laws in Washington state concerning kindergartners milking goats?

Nah, I'd better not. Knowing him, he'd probably sneak some scissors up there and give Spike an unflattering haircut.

No one looks good in The Rachel. No one.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Be Poo to Your School (My 200th Post!)

I'm not a PTA Mom. Does that surprise you? Yeah, it doesn't really surprise anyone. I love my kids' school and volunteer there regularly, but I'm just not leadership material. I fall asleep in meetings, I'm bad at making tough decisions and I don't do politics, on any scale.

And so I look for other ways to contribute. This year I will not only be working at our school's annual plant sale, I'll be contributing goods for the sale. You know, seedlings, flowers, veggie starts, animal poop... did I lose you on that last one?

I'd been sort of marinating on this idea for a while now, but I hesitated to throw it out there, lest I sound like a complete yokel-dork. I mustered up the courage to ask the garden gals if they would be interested in my poo (words that I never thought I'd hear myself say, I assure you), and was very enthusiastically received by them. It was a nice feeling, knowing that I am not the only granola poo-coveter in town. You've heard me go on about it before, but allow me to remind you that critter poo, bunny poop in particular is magic. It's dry, it doesn't burn your plants, it has very little odor and the bunnies make it like it's going out of style.

Which is why, come Friday night, My friend Melinda and I will be filling and attempting to "jazz up" little bags of bunny, goat and chicken poop for sale on Saturday. I'm trying to think of some snappy wording for the bags. I've heard people refer to rabbit poop as "Bunny Marbles" or "Cocoa Puffs", but I'm looking for something more exciting and original. All Natural Doo Drops? Compost Thunder? Or in the case if goat poop, which looks exactly like a whole coffee bean, Magic Beans? Crappaccino?

I can't wait to see if my critter poo sells like hotcakes or just gets completely ignored. I certainly hope it goes well, lest I have to carry my unsold doodles back home in shame. It'd really be something if my doo revenue was enough to score something cool for the school gardens. You see that peach tree over there? Bought and paid for with goat turds, my friend!

Yes indeed, I may never be PTA Treasurer material, but I betcha a pitchfork that folks will remember the crazy crap peddling lady for years to come. And thus my legacy to the children of Olympia begins.