Friday, June 24, 2011

Sending Out the Invitations

The invitations are in. The Father of the Bride picked them up and wrote a check that was equivalent to 4 months of mortgage payments on our first house. We opened the big box containing several smaller ones. I took off the lid of the first box-...envelopes, box 2 ...more envelopes, box 3...napkins. Box 4... more envelopes. Box 5... matches. Finally the last box had what I was looking for: we request the honor of your presence...

I envisioned how we would assemble them (more about that in a minute). All of us sitting around the table music playing, a moment to cherish.

Really, shouldn't I know better by now? My husband went to take a nap. I think he was sleeping off the shock of purchasing a new refrigerator (more about that too) and paying for the stationary all in one day. My daughter sat down opened the box and started trying to put one together. What? We are just going to jump in? No psyching ourselves up? I pulled out a chair. Mr. Snarky stood over us eying the situation.

So there we sat. Mr. Snarky folded, I punched chads out of holes with a bamboo skewer, Bridezilla tied one on (ribbon) while we listened to sports talk guru Jim Rome blast people on his radio show via youtube. We laughed hysterically while he made fun of callers. It wasn't exactly what I'd envisioned for this moment, but then it was just so very...


Mr. Snarky finished all his folding, it was the easiest job and he was a machine at it, so he went to make us some pasta. He brought it to us at the table and the most terrible vision came to my mind. I moved the work in progress far away while we at our dinner. Spaghetti sauce and wedding invitations are a tragedy waiting to happen.

Now about them having to be assembled:  Of course our bride can't have an ordinary invitation but wanted something a tad unusual. She is fond of little details. When she went to approve the order so her dad could stop in later and pay she said to the clerk, "Oh I'd hate to have to be the person whose job that was, to put those together!"

"'s you. You have to do it."


And so she did, with the help of her slaves (Aka, family of the bride).

A dead refrigerator meant that there was nothing to drink but tepid tap water and lukewarm tea. Neither my husband nor I could complain that our faithful dinosaur had laid down after 45 years of service. It was probably manufactured the year I was born.  I'll almost miss the lumbering copper tone monster whose dimensions seem positively demure next to today's stainless steel leviathans.

Life is funny isn't it? The invitations will be forever linked to a new appliance.

"When we did get that fridge?" asked years from now for some random reason.

"It was the week we got the invitations."

"Oh yes. I remember."

Sunday, June 19, 2011

The Housewife's Top Ten Father's Day Movies

In Honor of dads everywhere The Housewife is counting down her favorite movies featuring great, amusing, or just plain silly fathers. Here we go: 
  1.  Father of the Bride (Both versions, technically making this the top 11)
  2. The Pursuit of Happyness
  3. Life With Father
  4. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
  5. To Kill a Mockingbird
  6. Mr. Mom
  7. Room For One More ( a little known Cary Grant film)
  8. Meet the Fockers
  9. Parenthood
  10. National Lampoon's Family Vacation
Close Calls:
  • Star Wars Saga (Let's face it Darth Vader is an interesting father figure.)
  • Kramer Vs. Kramer
  • About a Boy
  • The Godfather
  • Mama Mia (Because sometimes it's desire and not biology that makes a dad)

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Banana Republic: On the Hunt For an Extinct Brand

I've grieved for years over the olive green safari skirt (how foolish of me to let it get away) that I purchased at the old Banana Republic. I'm heartbroken when I remember the wide leather belt with a buckle so large I could have slain a charging elephant with it.  My Out of Africa/ Let's Dress Like Isaac Dineson Every Day phase immediately followed my Mid 80s Hippie phase which came on the heels of my Princess Diana wannabe phase. You'll be glad to know that elements of all these fashion trials blended into the eventual Let's Find Our Own Style  phase where I've been happily residing for several years. (But I digress)

If you see Banana Republic at the mall and wonder why it has such an odd name when it's a Gap knockoff, I feel sorry for you. Bless your heart, you are a style baby. Here's the skinny; It actually used to be an outpost for buying "travel and safari" clothing. The catalogs were exciting to read; shopping at the store felt like an expedition. It had a ceiling that looked like a blue African sky, and you might have found a tent set up just waiting for you to return from a day of hunting (for the perfect leather bag, perhaps) or a jeep crashing through the wall (because shopping is an adventure). I've been looking for a while online for someone else who loved this store and maybe had a catalog or two.  Then I happened upon this: Abandoned Republic. Your travel guide for the site is Scott Adams who has quite a collection of catalogs, stories, and photos.

The store started out selling military surplus from around the world and was creative and original until it was swallowed up by a giant homogenous corporate entity whose one goal seems to be to have everyone dress alike and kill variety and any spirit of or otherwise. I'm a little bitter, can you tell? When I pass the new store at the mall, I have to turn my head.

A moment of silence please for creativity and originality.

The Housewife in Mexico
The Housewife craves canvas and khaki in addition to silk and cashmere! I've never packed a bag for a trip that I didn't think of some item that I wish I had from this company. How many times have I wished I saved my catalogs! So I was ecstatic when I found this website. If you remember back in the day, you'll love the trip down memory lane, if you have no idea what I'm talking about, you'll be mad when you see what you missed. 

Everything you ever wanted to know is available on the Abandoned Republic site including where to find resellers of your favorite safari jacket or hiking boots. Here are a few photos to whet your appetite for your web trek.

Bon Voyage Style Adventurer!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Practice Walk Down the Aisle

One night last week while a hot June sun was sinking in the western sky, the bride and groom stopped by the house. A certain pair of shoes had arrived and Bridezilla was eager to try them on. She put them on and walked around. She stood next to her future husband to make sure she wasn't going to be taller than him. She stood next to her dad.

"Let's practice walking down the aisle."

We shoved the coffee table aside and my husband went and put on the shoes he's planning to wear on the big day, his black sharkskin cowboy boots. He'd been out cutting the yard so he had shorts on. It was very entertaining. They messed up and started over.  They started out...step. Stop. Step. Stop.

"I don't think people do it that way anymore." I said.

"You just want to glide down the aisle." added the groom.

"Start over; I'll sit on the arm of the chair and play my part."

"What part is that, Mom?"

I feigned tearful hysteria as my daughter rolled her eyes.

There was laughter and silliness. They started over.  I tried to soak up the moment. Between giggles I thought "This will never, ever happen again." I made mental notes: she looks happy while struggling to find the right pace, the dog is in the way, the furniture needs dusting, my future son in law is beaming, I see a lightening bug hovering over the lawn. I think back to a little girl out there at twilight, capturing them.

  Oh that memories could have been so easily held in the hand or trapped in a glowing green jar...

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Cutest Little Coop on the Block.

Okay it's the ONLY coop on the block but but it was in need of a little maintenance. I'm creative, the tending to things I'm not so good at. So if I take a room apart for a thorough cleaning, things aren't likely to go back just where they were. I mean, where's the fun in that? So when it was time to scrape and repaint the coop I saw an opportunity to have a little fun. Now this coop, built for me by an incredibly handy friend had peeling paint and in order to provide the hens with some shade my husband had leaned a piece of plywood against it. The day I went out to move it and a family of mice scattered in all directions causing me to make a screaming, thrashing fool of myself while my neighbors looked on, glad they'd gotten up early and not missed the morning's entertainment, I decided there must be something better to shade them.

Now for projects such as painting chicken coops and potting sheds I always remember what the Food Maven taught me while she was living here and working at a large home supply store in the paint department--don't forget to check the OOPS paint rack. The cans of paint that don't turn out quite right end up there. I got a gallon of turquoise paint that should have been thirty-two dollars for five, and a spray can of waterproof sealer for two dollars.

Nothing makes this housewife's heart sing like not having to pay full price.

Remember a week or two ago when I covered my dining room chair seats with that adorable black and white check? Well the remnants got used to make a couple of pillows which I'll be showing you in the next post, but I had enough left to make a shade for the coop by attaching clip rings. I had originally thought to hang them on nails or cup hooks attached to the coop but came up with the obvious solution of attaching them to the wire which leaves me free to move it if I need to. I can also replace the fabric easily with any remnant I come across.

So paint got scraped, while confused chickens looked on, bare wood got primed, paint was added and it was all topped off with a coat of waterproof sealer.

Isn't that an improvement? 

La maison de poulet (The chicken house).

Why does everything sound better in French?

How it looks in the garden.

A little makeover can make this housewife very happy...even if it's not for me.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Blogzilla vs. Bridezilla

My future son-in-law and I have been having a bit of fun at the bride's expense by continuously calling her "bridezilla."

He actually expanded it to include pretty much anything wedding related. "Shower-zilla" made a recent appearance. Honeymoon-zilla, cake-zilla, there isn't really anything that has to do with the upcoming nuptials that we can't entertain ourselves by adding zilla to.

I am happily welcoming a fellow snark into the family.

The other night while he was here I was talking about a recent blog post (a common question from them is, "Are you going to blog about that?") and he looked at me and said..."Blogzilla."

That made my daughter howl with laughter. "Blogzilla!"


Of course now I'm thinking of all the ways those cheesy monster movies could be used in blog related titles...

Mothra! How to protect your winter wardrobe.

The Blog

It Came From Cyberspace

The Creature From the Blog Bog

The Bad Seed (garden tips)

I Bury the (Martha Stewart) Living

The Blog Fog

Invasion of the Blog Snatchers

I Married a Monster From Cyberspace (Help for spouses of bloggers)

Revenge of the Blogger

So how about a little revenge of the reader? You can probably come up with lots more clever blog related titles than this, so let's hear em!