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Monday, March 4, 2013

Pet Peeves and First World Drama

I call it my list of "first world" problems that I face everyday, for example, "When bad outfits happen to good people" or "When bad hair happens to good people".  Another issue that used to bother me alot for nearly half an hour every morning, but now which magically takes only 5 minutes... kids getting dressed for the winter with all the glory of snowpants, boots, jacket, and hat; scarf, backpack, mittens last.  On the other side of the coin, this is a small deal considering other people might be worried about owning a pair of proper boots or snowsuits, right?

But what are the underlying conditions that really make me mad? How can I simplify this into common denominators? I've finally been able to narrow it down to three things that make me really mad and explain to myself why it makes me mad, so that I can stop being mad.
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1) When people aren't doing what they're supposed to be doing.
When my husband is supposed to be tucking the baby in for a nap, he's holding her and watching football (soccer) or reading up on stock quotes, but I'm the one super busy doing the dishes, sweeping, and cleaning up after lunch or dinner while the other kids are running around pulling each other's hair. But wait, who is the one doing the more important work?

When they're supposed to be brushing their teeth and getting dressed for school, instead they've locked themselves in the bathroom, joking or laughing about toothpaste being squeezed onto the counter or drinking water from a toothpaste cap.

When dirty clothes should be going into the dirty laundry bin. It's not shooting basketball hoops, there's no reason to miss. You just have to open the hatch on the hamper and put it in. My kids know how to do that because I decided to train them from birth to avoid conflicts in their future marriage.

I should put up a sign, Please place dirty laundry into bin. However, I doubt anyone would bother reading it which ties in to my next one.

2) When people don't know what they're supposed to know
When my mother in law puts medicine and creams into the fridge that are supposed to be stored at room temperature, and/or keeps Parmesan cheese and other items that are "refrigerate after opening" at room temperature.

When my husband bought the "Jalapeno" Laughing Cow cheese my son grabbed, cuz he didn't "know" to read the label. He didn't realize that Laughing Cow cheese comes in different flavors besides, fat (dark blue) and low fat (light blue). But it has red packaging! Read the label! (I was mad for nearly two hours, possibly because I was post partum and extremely hormonal, they all thought I was crazy to be mad about cheese. But deep inside, I was mad about people not reading labels).

When we ran out of dishwasher detergent and my nanny poured dish soap into the compartment in the dishwasher. Let me tell you, there was a bubble bath on my kitchen floor. I suppose that was an honest mistake and there really isn't a label anywhere that says, Do not use dishsoap like dishwasher detergent. You have to learn that one the hard way. Bubbles were tricky to mop up but the kitchen got a good cleaning.

Another time, a certain adult was helping me with laundry, but she poured the liquid detergent into the fabric softener compartment. Unfortunately I'm pretty sure this was not the first time it happened but I only found out about it because I saw her tipping the last bit of detergent in the jug so it was taking longer than usual so I went to check in. doh!!!!!!!!

I suppose my pet peeve number one should actually be, When people don't read labels properly!!!!

3) When people don't eat what they're supposed to be eating
When I cook a reasonable dinner that is not gross, I promise next time I will take a photo to prove that I am a reasonable cook and the meal is nutritious, edible and beautifully presented, so there is no reason not to eat it.

For example, I made a hearty stew of red beans, tomato paste, leftover squash, chicken chunks and star pasta. My daughter loved it and asked me to make it again next time. So I did, almost the same way, but she didn't want the bean soup the second time and only picked at it. "I'm still hungry, can I have cheerios and milk".

I've figured that my kids don't like leftovers but they like fried rice, chicken fingers, fish sticks, edame beans, KFC or friend chicken but not shake and bake, pasta with tomato sauce, alphaghetti, hot dogs served with the bun but they won't eat the bun, mini hamburgers, carrot sticks and cucumber sticks (not slices), cheese or ham sandwiches but not both together, frozen corn or peas, corn on the cob and corn soup, baked frozen pizza from any brand but not the soft storemade kind from the deli.  And they also like any kind of Chinese stirfry dinner with plain rice. Cooking for them is actually pretty easy. I sometimes prefer that my husband is away or not coming back for dinner because I can just get away from cooking "kid food". Then I don't have to worry about cooking a descent meal of pot roast or ribs, potatoes, carrots or squash, or even baked ham and pineapple and then he comes home and announces that he's gonna make himself his own bowl of wonton soup. Yah whatever, my teenage babysitter ate with us one time and told her mom the food was really good, and I know the food is really good, so that's why I'm mad at people who are not eating what they are supposed to be eating.

Default dinner if you don't like the food - Cheerios and Milk (or make your own wonton soup).

How do I stop being mad.
Well for starters, my parents used to tell me as a child, tears are really precious almost priceless, so don't waste them. I guess Jesus said it best on the cross, Father forgive them because they know not what they are doing.
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I'm taking it out of context, I guess people just can't help being stupid or they can't help doing something they're not supposed to be doing. Well as long as safety is not compromised, which means it's actually ok for me to be mad about people not reading labels. However, kids need to be directed and told the right way.

However, my dad also told me that even in my greatest anger, I should try not to yell at my husband nor tell him that he is stupid (even if he really did something as stupid as the annoying things I described above) .It is kinda funny in a wierd way, and I sometimes laugh even when I'm angry. The reason is that the best comeback would be "Well I guess it was a stupid decision to marry you" Well maybe this is some kind of inside joke he has with my mom, but I hope my husband never sees this post.

As for the food, well maybe it is about preferences and balanced nutrition. If that is the case then I really don't need to make the effort to make anything fancy. I think my husband only likes to eat Chinese stir fry dinners with rice. Well if the kids like that too, and I'm the only one who likes "American" food, I suppose I'll have to be the one eating Cheerios and Milk and the daddy can cook.

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