Monday, March 7, 2011

The Reality of Being a Domestic Goddess

Daydream: My home smells of something yummy to eat at any time of day.

Reality: I have Luke, whose poopy diapers carve such a vile stench into the air, visitors have been known to retch and take their coffee in the ice-box we call "the porch."

Daydream: I am the kind of woman whose cardigan-over-a-white-t-shirt-and-jeans ensemble looks fresh and casual, but pretty. Pulled together. Polished.

Reality:  I am often too lazy to shower first thing in the morning and end up grabbing a hooded sweatshirt and jamming a baseball cap over my unwashed (but pigtailed) hair. Like Red from Fraggle Rock, only fatter.

Daydream: I am the kind of woman who, when you pop by unannounced, is sipping a chai tea at the table, listening to son read aloud, whilst sunlight streams through the (streak-free) window and classical music plays lightly in the background.

Reality: Yesterday's coffee reheated in the microwave for the second time has grown cold. While  First Son refuses to sound out the word "cat" and carefully arranges his features into blank nothingness,  I am red-faced with frustration and jabbing at the letters on the page, screeching, "You KNOW this one. Yes, you do! You do SO! Sound it out, NOW!"

The classical music station is drowned out by Second Son singing "O Canada" while he bats a tin-foil ball across the living room with his father's golf clubs - ones he has been implicitly told not to use...

Daydream: My workspace is clutter-free save the pretty fabric-covered basket meant to temporarily hold bills which are paid on time and immediately filed into their appropriate and cross-referenced folders.

Reality: At any given time, our huge desk is covered with artwork, cold coffee cups, dinky cars and for some inexplicable reason, pieces of dry dog food that the even the dog won't eat. The fabric basket IS the filing cabinet and I think I put paid bills away sometime in 2008, two houses and one city ago.

Daydream: High-backed antique settee plus chaise lounge, lovingly restored in luxury fabrics grace my front room. Soft wall-sconce lighting spills onto my gleaming hardwood floors and fresh flowers from the garden brighten every room.

Reality: Aztec-design on 25 year-old couch that is a hand-me-down from my parents. Sags. Springs are shot and I cannot for the life of me get the mustard stain off one arm. Perfect for bouncing on. The floors are indeed hardwood, but are dotted with paint from the previous owner's love affair with bright, happy (read: psychosis-inducing) colour. My  floor lamps are from Sears and tilt at alarming angles by day's end.

Garden? What garden?

Daydream: Children who cover their mouths when they cough, don't giggle when they toot, sneeze anywhere but DIRECTLY AT THE COMPUTER SCREEN while snuggling as Mama types and who pee into the toilet.

Reality: Farting is hilarious to my children. I have no idea why. Their father is the same way. I can't explain that, either. Snuggles are good - I'll take 'em when I can get 'em. Luke's pee forgets to listen and poop happens, right?

And you? What's your reality?


  1. I also imagined calm quiet moments where each of the children independently did their own thing- one playing classical music on the violin, another doing puzzles and the baby cooing on the floor with some toys. The reality is that my children move as one unit more often than not. When my oldest takes out her violin the other two rush to her side, crowd out her notes and all but prevent her from practicing. My middle one sings at the top of her lungs and since she doesn't do Beethoven yet she's singing oh canada, abc's and maaaaaaaaaaaary had a little lamb. If she stops practicing to exchange her song on the music stand my littlest one toddles over and starts grabbing at and tearing the song book.

    I also thought people could just drop by- but honestly I don't answer the door some days b/c the floor is still sticky from breakfast, supper dishes are still on the counter and only one of the three children is dressed (so we shush them downstairs and pretend we didn't hear the doorbell!)

  2. Oh Dolphin. If your daydreams were your reality, I'd have to come over and kick your chai-tea drinking, polished floor, restored settee sitting ass. After all, why should you get wall sconces and gardens when I get bare light bulbs and the oh-so-fragrent whiff of thawing dog crap? :) Smooches!!!

  3. Thanks for the snort inducing trip down memory lane. My own two boys are now fully functioning adults (well, mostly) and the house still does not approach anything close to the similar fantasies I still have!

    Ah well, too busy living life I suppose. Good for us!