Not apologizing for the pretzel in the front seat

Today I drove a couple coworkers to lunch in my mostly clean car. Except for one pesky mini pretzel right there in the middle of the front row passenger seat.

Old Rebecca would’ve apologized profusely and devoted too much head space wondering how harshly said passenger would be judging my car, my parenting, my character, and God only knows what else, perhaps my taste in after school snacks too?

Happily, that version of me – worried, anxiety-addled, obsessed with other people’s opinions of me me – well, she done left the building! Huzzah!

Now I can find the humor and fleeting sweetness in the messy moments of life with family. It’s not an indictment on any of us that our house isn’t Pottery Barn catalog clean, or that any of the things described herein (things that actually all happened, like – within the last month) are in stark contrast from the way family life is “supposed to be”, whatever the H-E double hockey sticks that means.

Holla if you can relate!

Full disclosure – writing this post has made me realize I have pantry issues. See if you can spot the theme J.

Family life can be…slightly aggravating, like when I go to reach for the garlic powder only to find it’s near the oregano because someone (cue side eye) has put my alphabetically ordered spice rack all out of whack.

It can be curious and profitable too, as in, you never know what you’ll find when taking laundry out of the dryer. I have discovered still usable Chapstick, unraveled crunchy papers from school, dollar bills, scored enough coins to cover at least one Starbucks run, and just last week, found the long end of what used to be a key; God only knows to which lock.

I tell myself that one day I will miss these things and by “things” I mean sticky syrup patches in the pantry and dirty socks, stuffed between the sofa cushions. No, I won’t miss those things at all. More accurately stated, I will miss the everyday feels of having the mess-makers living under one roof.

And I mean, why wouldn’t our daughter’s orthodontic rubber bands end up in the beard of our mini schnauzer? Luckily there were only two and I rescued them without Lilo demanding a fair trade in puppy jerky.

Family life also looks like rifling through the outdoor recycle bin where you casually tossed an empty Gatorade bottle – because it’s an empty Gatorade bottle…until you remember the boy child had leftover change from field day and for some inexplicable reason (no pockets that day?), rolled up all the extra cash and shoved it in there. I did not look ridiculous at all fishing through filth to find the bottle in question and then remove a crusty five along with three dollar bills. Speaking of which, how badly did we get hosed when we gave him a $20 and he obviously spent $13 on candy bars and other crap? I am beginning to understand what other parents mean when they say that these days they pretty much feel like their kids’ ATM.

Back to the pantry. Oye.

Love them all so much. Aaaaaand may the odds be ever in my favor as Effie from Hunger Games would say when I reach into the pantry that was organized to perfection (past tense).

And when I reach for one of the syrup bottles that belongs on the Lazy Susan but is on the shelf above in the middle of everything blocking all the canned goods, and of course it’s almost empty, but wait, the new one that shouldn’t have been opened yet already is, and drat if both of them aren’t sticky as all get-out.

Or during a late evening popcorn grab, I reach into the (yes, again) pantry to find the leftover fresh brussels sprouts sitting there instead of the veggie crisper. But whyyyyyyy?

Darling people who I love and adore and would do anything for, the Italian seasoning does not go beside the cinnamon. And the not-so-secret key to my happy little heart just might be an orderly spice rack.

I love you!

Leave a Reply