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10 Ways for Busy Parents to Manage Households

Author Kathy Peel is not a fan of equal parenting. What happens if Mom's got a crush of work from the office for a month? Or Dad gets a serious illness?

Instead, Peel, who calls herself a family manager -- "None of us wants to be a 'housewife.' I didn't." -- believes in sharing the burdens of the household among everyone with each person taking charge of those things he/she likes best. Dad likes grocery shopping? Great. Mom wants the sinks to gleam -- that's hers.

Peel's latest book, "The Busy Mom's Guide to a Happy, Organized Home" is chock full of tips to make parents' lives run a little more smoothly. Peel, who has a husband and three adult sons, has collected the tips over 30 years. The 300-plus-page book organizes the household into seven areas. Each area then has lots of tidbits and tricks for managing it. And while many of the tips are useful, it's quite long if you read it cover to cover as I did. Rather, it's meant to be a reference book to pull out for short spurts on specific topics, Peel says.

"Moms have always struggled with being busy and doing housework faster and better," Peel says. "We have a nation of women working two full-time jobs -- maybe three. Family management is one full-time job. They are tired and stressed out. They're in a bad mood more than they want to be. They are looking for answers."

Some keys to handling the stress? Here are Peel's Top 10:

1. Manage by department: The seven in her book are Home and Property, Food, Family and Friends, Finances, Special Events, Time and Scheduling and Self Management.

2. Use a daily task hit list.

3. Create -- and use -- a family control center to keep track of comings and goings. Keep an up-to-date calendar there along with a running grocery and supply list.

4. Set up family in boxes: Kids put all their papers in their box when they get home from school. Parents go through the boxes at night, signing and returning anything that goes back to school.

5. Use a timer: Kids fighting over a toy? Set a timer for the length of time each one gets to play with it. Need the kids to get dressed faster in the mornings and evenings, try the five-minute get-dressed game. (It's been working wonderfully for the past two weeks with my boys, by the way).

6. Multitask: Kids can fold laundry or brush the dog while watching TV, for instance.

7. Have fun cutting the clutter: I mentioned Peel's "Clutter Jail" to my 6-year-old, and he burst out laughing. But it sure got his attention. Rather than watch his games go inside an overturned laundry basket, he put them away. Another clutter cleaning idea is the seven-minute nightly sprint. Set a timer and play some fun music. Everyone in the family dashes around the house picking up the day's clutter, putting papers in the recycling, taking out the trash, etc. Just seven minutes can help you stay on top of everyday messiness.

8. Define "clean" for your family: Clean doesn't need to be sparkling. But you don't need to live in a pigsty either. Find a happy medium that everyone in your house can live with. Remember a happy, fun house is more important and lasting for kids than a shining one.

9. Divide chores: Everyone in the house can, and should, contribute to its upkeep. Divide chores according to age, skills and available time.

10. Barter to save time and money. For instance, join with a friend to paint a room in your house and help her organize closets. Or team up with a neighbor to cook meals for both households. You take one day, the neighbor takes another.

Do you want some other ideas on how to make your house and life run easier and with less stress? Kathy Peel will answer questions live at 1 p.m. today.

What other tips do you have for easing the stress in your busy lives?

By Stacey Garfinkle |  August 4, 2008; 7:00 AM ET  | Category:  Newsmakers
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Comments


Outsource as much as possible.

Posted by: Not a drudge | August 4, 2008 7:16 AM | Report abuse

What other tips do you have for easing the stress in your busy lives?

11. Don't put out until your husband does the dishes, laundry, mopping, dusting, vacuuming and toilet scrubbing.

Posted by: Feminist | August 4, 2008 7:27 AM | Report abuse

What other tips do you have for easing the stress in your busy lives?

11. Don't put out until your husband does the dishes, laundry, mopping, dusting, vacuuming and toilet scrubbing.

Posted by: Feminist | August 4, 2008 7:27 AM

You can put out a lot more if you marry a man who makes buckets of money.

Posted by: Please, child | August 4, 2008 7:36 AM | Report abuse

"Put out"?? Yikes... that's a happy marriage.

It's a good idea to keep a master calendar that everyone in the family uses, but the calendar is even BETTER if you keep it online where people can access it from anywhere!

We share Google's free online calendar. Each person in the family is assigned a different color for their events. You can even set up the calendar to send you an email every morning reminding you of that day's events.

It's really worked out well for us.

Posted by: Rebecca | August 4, 2008 8:06 AM | Report abuse

Ew gross, who brushes the dog inside the house? That's just creating another mess to clean up.

Posted by: VaLGaL | August 4, 2008 8:44 AM | Report abuse

I don't like suggestion 4. It's much more effective to sit down with the child and go through all the papers together. "What's this? Why the bad test score? Excellent work on this project! You need WHAT, by WHEN? You have how much homework?"

(Beside which, if each child put the papers in his/her own box, it would be an "out box," not an "in box". Nit-pick, I know, but...)

Posted by: ArmyBrat | August 4, 2008 8:52 AM | Report abuse

Father of 4 is here. Kiss honest conversation good-bye.

Posted by: bloviating neanderthal sighting | August 4, 2008 8:54 AM | Report abuse

The tallies are in for July of 08. Other than the infamous anonymous troll weighing in with 969 of the 3734 comments, the top contributers are listed below:

15 Momof5
16 DCer
17 Alex
17 Fo3
18 Chris
20 Billie
20 Fun Illinois Facts
22 quark
24 Lacey
25 Jed Clampett
25 Stacey Garfinkle
28 Liz D
30 atlmom
40 Emily
48 Laura
49 Donna
53 MN
56 ArmyBrat
59 Cecilia
122 atb

More stats to follow.

Posted by: Blog Stats | August 4, 2008 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Ew gross, who brushes the dog inside the house? That's just creating another mess to clean up.

Posted by: VaLGaL | August 4, 2008 8:44 AM

Some of us live where it is either too hot or too cold to brush a dog outside. I don't know about you but I have no inclination to take a dog out and brush him in 95 degrees or 15.

Posted by: Me | August 4, 2008 9:01 AM | Report abuse

"When you take on motherhood, the world's most important job, there's no formal orientation -- just on-the-job training and trial by fire," says Kathy Peel in her soon-to-be-released book, "The Busy Mom's Guide to a Happy, Organized Home."

"motherhood, the world's most important job"? Fatherhood is chopped liver? Can't wait for the online chat today.

Posted by: Oh, brother | August 4, 2008 9:02 AM | Report abuse

Oh, brother: since the on-line chat is moderated even if people call her on it I bet it doesn't get addressed.

Posted by: Me | August 4, 2008 9:05 AM | Report abuse

Oh, brother: since the on-line chat is moderated even if people call her on it I bet it doesn't get addressed.

Posted by: Me | August 4, 2008 9:05 AM

Or, she'll try to wiggle out of it. A classic MM ploy.

Posted by: Oh, brother | August 4, 2008 9:08 AM | Report abuse

We always brush the pets in the house- while watching tv. The key is to do it right before you vacuum the room. It's really not all that messy.

Also keep in mind that in this area a lot of us live in apartments and condos and don't neccessarily have an outdoor area to do it.

Posted by: Kim | August 4, 2008 9:12 AM | Report abuse

I think Kathy Peel's viewpoints on motherhood vs fatherhood are pretty obvious:

- Peel, who calls herself a family manager -- "None of us wants to be a 'housewife.' I didn't." - if SHE's the 'family manager', what does that make her husband? Apparently, 'NOT the family manager'

- ""We have a nation of women working two full-time jobs -- maybe three. Family management is one full-time job. " - So, women are the 'family managers' and men are not.

You don't have to be a fan of 'equal parenting' (I'm not, FWIW) to think that the stereotype of women as the full time 'family manager' in charge of the house is outdated and obsolete. It devalues the work men do with families and households. Actually, it ignores that work completely.

Posted by: m2j5c2 | August 4, 2008 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Whoops, hit submit before I was done. I was also going to say that each person doing what they enjoy doing works really well in our house. And then if someone has a busier week or isn't feel good- the other one picks up the slack.

I think sometimes people underestimate how far civility and respect can go when interacting and running a household with your spouse. You don't always need to keep score.

Posted by: Kim | August 4, 2008 9:15 AM | Report abuse

"Peel's latest book, "The Busy Mom's Guide to a Happy, Organized Home" is chock full of tips to make parents' lives run a little more smoothly.

If the book is for parents, why is "Mom's" in the title?

Posted by: This does notcompute | August 4, 2008 9:15 AM | Report abuse

What I see missing in the suggestions is one word. The word 'no'. All these suggestions facilitate the word 'yes'. Yes, you can go there. Yes, you can do this. Yes, you will be picked up. We, the parents, have a way to organize the 'yes'. But parents are not here to serve the desires of the kids.

Posted by: who's in control? | August 4, 2008 9:18 AM | Report abuse

Who is going to produce Peel's online chat today?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 9:19 AM | Report abuse

this is an actual suggestion: No child under 12 should have more than six outfits and 3 pairs of shoes. That way the laundry doesn't pile up and a lot of fights are eliminated. I counted, and two granddaughters have more than 40 pairs of underwear each. This is craziness and clutter guaranteed.
Adults should not have 30 or more t-shirts and 12 pairs of running shoes.
Do I sound like the Clothing Nazi? I raised eight kids without going nuts.

Posted by: pdwolfe | August 4, 2008 9:20 AM | Report abuse

pdwolfe

"I counted, and two granddaughters have more than 40 pairs of underwear each."

Counting the grandkids' underwear.

Talk about a life of quiet desperation...


Posted by: Yawn | August 4, 2008 9:24 AM | Report abuse

I raised eight kids without going nuts.

Posted by: pdwolfe | August 4, 2008 9:20 AM

And without success, if you are whining about the number of underwear your granddaughters have.

Posted by: Confused | August 4, 2008 9:30 AM | Report abuse

pdwolfe brings up a good idea and then yawn and confused just don't see it. 'Just say no' may have been a poorly conceived idea with Nancy Reagan as its spokesperson, but 'just say no' is a good takeaway for too-busy parents. Say 'no' to too many things. Say 'no' to those things that put your family out of whack. There is no need to treat your children as employees by 'managing' them.

Posted by: who's in control? | August 4, 2008 9:34 AM | Report abuse

"If the book is for parents, why is "Mom's" in the title?"

Men don't waste their time with this kind of tripe. It's being marketed exclusively to women.

Posted by: Plain & Simple | August 4, 2008 9:34 AM | Report abuse

You don't have to be a fan of 'equal parenting' (I'm not, FWIW) to think that the stereotype of women as the full time 'family manager' in charge of the house is outdated and obsolete. It devalues the work men do with families and households. Actually, it ignores that work completely.

Posted by: m2j5c2 | August 4, 2008 9:14 AM

Spot on. Talking about equality while insulting 50% of the supposed equal participants is lame.

Posted by: manny | August 4, 2008 9:38 AM | Report abuse

I pity pdwolfe's daughters-in-law. And sons-in-law too. And children, come to think of it.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 9:39 AM | Report abuse

okay, this is amazingly frustrating

I agree with all of the "recognize dad's role," " focus on both parents", etc. arguments but before bashing this book because "mom" is in the title for marketing purposes, maybe we should see if there are tips that could be helpful

I'm a stressed-out mom, much of my own making, and get bogged down in the day-to-day so much that I often can't see solutions

I also respond to lists and reading about others' ideas in books - so, I am interested in hearing tips and am smart enough to take what might work for me and leave the rest

everything isn't a political discussion, jeez!

Posted by: usually a lurker | August 4, 2008 9:44 AM | Report abuse

"What other tips do you have for easing the stress in your busy lives?"

Step 1 is that I don't treat my husband like someone I manage and I don't buy books that suggest I am essential to the household and he is a bystander earning a paycheck.

Maybe add a new tip 11 to the list: Save time by skipping blogs based on dated gender assumptions.

Posted by: Alecia | August 4, 2008 9:50 AM | Report abuse

The tallies are in for July of 08. Other than the infamous anonymous troll weighing in with 969 of the 3734 comments, the top contributers are listed below:

122 atb

Posted by: Blog Stats | August 4, 2008 9:01 AM

What a surprise. atb at it again! narcissit.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 9:51 AM | Report abuse

Who gives a rip about identifying the number of times anyone posts here? Is this some sort of Big Brother thing by WaPO?

Posted by: huh? | August 4, 2008 9:52 AM | Report abuse

"What other tips do you have for easing the stress in your busy lives?"

Keep the recycle bin by the beer cooler.

Posted by: stress relief=6 pack | August 4, 2008 9:59 AM | Report abuse

None of us wants to be a 'housewife.'

I have a sister in law who loves being a housewife.

I also have more than 30 t shirts.

Posted by: Irishgirl | August 4, 2008 10:03 AM | Report abuse

Huh?, you had 12 comments last month. Only 3 more and you would have made honorable mention.

Posted by: Blog Stats | August 4, 2008 10:05 AM | Report abuse

I, for one, loved PDWolfe's suggestion about the clothes. And I plead guilty as a working Mom to sometimes 'overbuying' items because I didn't have the time or wasn't organized enough to check the closets and drawers carefully to see if we really needed the extra items.

Let's face it, when my kids were younger and growing faster, I got into the habit of buying more often. I was blessed with a beautiful daughter, and enjoyed outfitting her in Gymboree ensembles. Thankfully, she's now in a school uniform (those plaid jumpers are indestructible!), and it really makes the routine so much easier. I used to accummulate rubbermaid tubs full of the stuff she'd outgrown, and it was a chore to have to 'wrangle' it and see that the items that I paid good money for were consigned, given away to family and friends or charity. This was time that I didn't have!

So bravo, PDWolfe, and let's hear more from you about other observations that you may have. I definitely agree with you that too many clothes, adorable though they may be, equals clutter!

Posted by: Huckleberry Friend | August 4, 2008 10:06 AM | Report abuse

who's in control?

"pdwolfe brings up a good idea and then yawn and confused just don't see it.


Um, you just don't see it. pdwolfe's own kid(s) don't follow her idea about saying no to too many clothes... The lesson didn't last one generation.

Posted by: Cofused | August 4, 2008 10:06 AM | Report abuse

"I was blessed with a beautiful daughter, . . . "

Another Lake Wobegone parent, and the gratuitous adjective isn't relevant to the parent's over-spending either.

Posted by: isabel | August 4, 2008 10:15 AM | Report abuse

The tallies are in for July of 08. Other than the infamous anonymous troll weighing in with 969 of the 3734 comments, the top contributers are listed below:

122 atb

Posted by: Blog Stats | August 4, 2008 9:01 AM

What a surprise. atb at it again! narcissit.


Posted by: | August 4, 2008 9:51 AM

atb just loves the attention. and apparently so does army brat!

Posted by: vanni | August 4, 2008 10:16 AM | Report abuse

The lesson didn't last one generation.

Posted by: Cofused | August 4, 2008 10:06 AM

It's not supposed to be a lesson. It's a household management tactic. Hold that thought for the column on helping your kids better manage clutter. That wouldn't be today, though.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 10:18 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: | August 4, 2008 9:51 AM

atb just loves the attention. and apparently so does army brat!

Posted by: vanni | August 4, 2008 10:16 AM

And so does Blog Stats...

Posted by: Really pathetic | August 4, 2008 10:26 AM | Report abuse

Hey Cofused...(is that a play on words?...clever.) I believe that we have to keep in mind that the challenges of today's generation are probably different than that of PDWolfe's and I am betting that he or she would acknowledge that too. More often than not, both parents work. There may be more disposible income, and it's tempting to spend it on things like clothes, which are really pretty darn cheap at Kohls, Target, etc. It takes less time and money to buy new than to maintain and recycle clothes, especially cheaply made imports. Kids are involved in so many more activities and sports. My daughter has loved and played soccer since she was 4. I doubt that 4 year olds in the 1960s required cleats and shorts. They probably made do with keds and health-tex. But it's true that when I think back to my parent's and grandparent's closet, they weren't always running out to the stores for the latest sale or doing 'retail therapy' (I plead guilty on that one.) They didn't require walk-in closets or plastic storage tubs. Maybe they had a cedar chest, but it probably served the whole family.

Anway, it's 2008, and not 1968, but I think that we all could do do fine with far less than we buy, consume and discard. I think we could save ourselves a lot of stress if we did.

Honestly, I wish that folks here wouldn't fall into the trap of being so quick to judge or assume that we're all applauding at those who are so quick to jump all over somebody else's suggestions. You snarky folks (I'm talking about message boards in general, not necessarily this one,) are not as funny as you think you are.

Posted by: Huckleberry Friend | August 4, 2008 10:28 AM | Report abuse

"I was blessed with a beautiful daughter, . . . "

Another Lake Wobegone parent, and the gratuitous adjective isn't relevant to the parent's over-spending either.

Posted by: isabel | August 4, 2008 10:15 AM


Why are people so mean on this blog? It brings me to tears!

Posted by: Donna | August 4, 2008 10:31 AM | Report abuse

"10 Ways for Busy Parents to Manage Your Household"

I don't some other parent managing my household, thank you.

Posted by: Grammar Police | August 4, 2008 10:31 AM | Report abuse

Donna, if you get brought to tears so easily, you need to consider seeing a psychiatrist to be assessed for therapy and medication, because yours is an overreaction.

Posted by: please get help | August 4, 2008 10:34 AM | Report abuse

"10 Ways for Busy Parents to Manage Your Household"

I don't some other parent managing my household, thank you.

I don't WANT people who don't check their own writing critiquing mine.

Posted by: get a life | August 4, 2008 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Hey Isabel,

As a matter of fact...I live pretty far from Lake Wobegon. I'm not perfect, and I'm far from a braggart. I'd like to think that most of use think our kids are 'beautiful' in our eyes, even on the days when juggling everything wears us out and we'd like to escape.

Thanks for proving my point. I sometimes wonder if some of the other readers on this blog are as turned off by the nastiness, put downs and one-upmanship. I used to come to these blogs to get practical advice, support, and humour, but I find that the online community is also rife with meanies.

You don't know me...why do you automatically go for the smackdown? Does it make you feel superior or better about yourself?

Posted by: Huckleberry Friend | August 4, 2008 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Another Lake Wobegone parent, and the gratuitous adjective isn't relevant to the parent's over-spending either.

Posted by: isabel | August 4, 2008 10:15 AM

She probably can't have kids, so she just takes it out on you. Don't let it get your down. Many people on these blogs are jealous.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 10:40 AM | Report abuse

amen Huckleberry Friend - I'm sure your daughter is beautiful and really, this nastiness is just excessive

Posted by: usually a lurker | August 4, 2008 10:41 AM | Report abuse

yes, there is a point where the number of clothes gets ridiculous but the nice thing about my son having so many tee shirts or undies is that means that i don't have to do laundry every week. if i decide i'd rather do something else & laundry doesn't get done then i'm not scrambling sunday night to run a load of laundry so he'll have clean undies. having more than 7 pairs of undies can be liberating.

Posted by: quark | August 4, 2008 10:45 AM | Report abuse

If you have to manage your house as if it were Cape Canaveral, then stop being a puppy mill. Or else marry an old man with a bad heart and lots of money and hire domestic servants.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 10:48 AM | Report abuse

You don't know me...why do you automatically go for the smackdown? Does it make you feel superior or better about yourself?

Posted by: Huckleberry Friend | August 4, 2008 10:38 AM

#1 On Parenting Rule:

No bragging about your unremarkable children.

Posted by: Please, child | August 4, 2008 10:48 AM | Report abuse

#1 On Parenting Rule:

No bragging about your unremarkable children.

Don't be a b!tch and you won't get called on it. To late for you today. Try again in the morning.

Posted by: rule # 2 | August 4, 2008 10:54 AM | Report abuse

Donna, if you get brought to tears so easily, you need to consider seeing a psychiatrist to be assessed for therapy and medication, because yours is an overreaction.

Posted by: please get help | August 4, 2008 10:34 AM

Why do you have to be so mean? This blog is for parents to exchange ideas, not to attack others. Reading these mean posts makes me so upset and ruins my whole day.

Posted by: Donna | August 4, 2008 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Reading these mean posts makes me so upset and ruins my whole day.

Posted by: Donna | August 4, 2008 10:56 AM

Then don't read them.

Posted by: common sense | August 4, 2008 11:01 AM | Report abuse

Time management tip #3 - Eliminate sex and any worries about its absence.

Posted by: Denkpaard | August 4, 2008 11:06 AM | Report abuse

"#1 On Parenting Rule:

No bragging about your unremarkable children."

"Don't be a b!tch and you won't get called on it. To late for you today. Try again in the morning."

Posted by: rule # 2 | August 4, 2008 10:54 AM

Spelling/Grammar Police!
Did you take your meds today? I am really looking forward to today's online chat!

Posted by: I heart David Cassidy | August 4, 2008 11:07 AM | Report abuse

i really worry about the kinds of things you are teaching your children. i mean, if the people on this blog can be so nasty and assumptive about strangers who are merely stating their own opinions, what kind of example are you setting for your children? that getting a cheap laugh or being the most snarky wins you some kind of prize? no wonder there are so many uncontrollable and rude children running around...just looks what kind of examples their parents are setting!

Posted by: childish | August 4, 2008 11:08 AM | Report abuse

I am usually a lurker and do just try to not read the nasty snarks that some people get so much thrill out of. Like Donna and Huckleberry Friend, I WAS interested is seeing what others had to say about tips for managing the day to day lives in their household. I didn't know it was going to be a snarkfest. One can't help reading the posts when they appear one right after another, but to point out to someone to NOT read them puts the whole idea of a blog to posts that DON'T get read. I guess the sheer joy of the snarky posters is to take out their frustrations on the keyboard and then hit submit (which I am now doing, but only because I just couldn't help wonder where the topic of this blog went).

Posted by: why the nastiness | August 4, 2008 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Obviously, Get a Life, you missed the satire in Grammar Police's statement. The title of the blog "10 Ways for Busy Parents to Manage Your Household" indicates that some other busy parent will come in to manage your household!

The Sheriff's suggestion for a proper construction of today's blog title:

"10 Ways for Busy Parents to Manage a Household"

"10 Ways for You as a Busy Parent to Manage Your Household"

"10 Ways to Manage a Household for Busy Parents"

"Ten Way to Manage a Busy Household"

Posted by: Grammar Sheriff | August 4, 2008 11:19 AM | Report abuse

I am usually a lurker and do just try to not read the nasty snarks that some people get so much thrill out of. Like Donna and Huckleberry Friend, I WAS interested is seeing what others had to say about tips for managing the day to day lives in their household. I didn't know it was going to be a snarkfest. One can't help reading the posts when they appear one right after another, but to point out to someone to NOT read them puts the whole idea of a blog to posts that DON'T get read. I guess the sheer joy of the snarky posters is to take out their frustrations on the keyboard and then hit submit (which I am now doing, but only because I just couldn't help wonder where the topic of this blog went).

Posted by: why the nastiness | August 4, 2008 11:09 AM


Thank you! I also agree with you Donna, and feel for you guys. These nasty comments make me so upset.

Posted by: Nancy | August 4, 2008 11:19 AM | Report abuse

Hey Donna, how is that lout of a hubby that you have?

Posted by: to Donna | August 4, 2008 11:23 AM | Report abuse

For childish, why the nastiness and anyone else who's sick of trolls, here's an illuminating extract about their mindset from the article "Malwebolence" (page 3 online):
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/03/magazine/03trolls-t.html?pagewanted=1&sq

Theory of the Green Hair.

"You have green hair," [troll Jason Fortuny] told me. "Did you know that?"

"No," I said.

"Why not?"

"I look in the mirror. I see my hair is black."

"That's uh, interesting. I guess you understand that you have green hair about as well as you understand that you're a terrible reporter."

"What do you mean? What did I do?"

"That's a very interesting reaction," Fortuny said. "Why didn't you get so defensive when I said you had green hair?" If I were certain that I wasn't a terrible reporter, he explained, I would have laughed the suggestion off just as easily. The willingness of trolling "victims" to be hurt by words, he argued, makes them complicit, and trolling will end as soon as we all get over it.

Posted by: the article that trolls don't want others to read | August 4, 2008 11:23 AM | Report abuse

since there hasn't been a real "tip" in awhile - here's mine

post your daily/weekly hit list on the fridge so that all family members have an idea of what needs to be done in a given week - preferably with check boxes so that when a task is done, there's a visual

I've found that this helps my not-always-helpful partner realize what needs to be done in a week to keep things moving

also, helps to break things down into small pieces so that there are multiple check-offs, making everyone feel productive

I'm interested in hearing other tips! thanks!

Posted by: taking back the blog | August 4, 2008 11:27 AM | Report abuse

It's not the trolls and their posts that bother me (and I try not to feed the trolls with more bait by posting something in return), but the blog turns in to a troll fest and goes so far off-topic that it's no longer an OP blog, but a blog about trolls.

Posted by: to: the article that trolls don't want others to read | August 4, 2008 11:27 AM | Report abuse

Thank you! I also agree with you Donna, and feel for you guys. These nasty comments make me so upset.

Posted by: Nancy | August 4, 2008 11:19 AM

Are you kidding? Comments from cyber strangers on the Net upset you?

Posted by: Wha? | August 4, 2008 11:27 AM | Report abuse

Just one more thought from me...I really DO enjoy the humor and sage advice that I often find here (presumably from other parents).

I loved the "Outsource as much as possible" and "Don't put out" suggestions, which were clearly meant to be funny. But when people get 'ganged up on' in a virtual sense, I guess the Mother Bear in me wants to stand up for them.

Posted by: Huckleberry Friend | August 4, 2008 11:30 AM | Report abuse

FIX THE TITLE!

Posted by: Hello Stacey | August 4, 2008 11:33 AM | Report abuse

Word frequencies from last month's blogs:

16 Illinois
18 flat stomach
20 gun
22 weasel (not including deletions)
98 pool
138 troll

The talk of trolls dominated the blog.

Posted by: Blog Stats | August 4, 2008 11:38 AM | Report abuse

But when people get 'ganged up on' in a virtual sense, I guess the Mother Bear in me wants to stand up for them.

Posted by: Huckleberry Friend | August 4, 2008 11:30 AM

Why? Can't the posters defend themselves? Isn't that part of participating in a blog?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 11:41 AM | Report abuse

138 troll

The talk of trolls dominated the blog.

Posted by: Blog Stats | August 4, 2008 11:38 AM

What are the abt & "troll" stats for July?

Posted by: Go army | August 4, 2008 11:45 AM | Report abuse

There is something to be said for having enough underwear so that you can skip a load of laundry every now and then.

We spent a little extra money for the high efficiency washer and dryer, but the investment makes laundry time easier and more efficient. And I keep a bottle of that spray on 'wrinkle eraser' stuff around for those bleary eyed mornings when dragging out the iron would be hazardous.

And I would like to thank the folks who invented stain and wrinkle resistant clothes...especially for the kids!

Posted by: Jules | August 4, 2008 12:02 PM | Report abuse

I saw the NY Times article too, and thought about it this morning as I waded through the posts. Perhaps that is an idea for another blog topic.

I have also noticed that the NY Times comments seem to be pretty thoughtful. There is a lot less 'trolling' there. I don't know how they do it, but they do.

Anyway...let's get back to advice for better household managment!!

Posted by: On trolls and blogging | August 4, 2008 12:08 PM | Report abuse

And I keep a bottle of that spray on 'wrinkle eraser' stuff around for those bleary eyed mornings when dragging out the iron would be hazardous.

One way to avoid that is to lay out the next day's clothes the night before. For children old enough to decide, they can pick out their own outfits to wear the next day. For children not old enough to decide by themselves yet but old enough to have some interest in process, pick out three appropriate outfits and let them choose which one they want to wear the next day.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 12:08 PM | Report abuse

how do you better organize the whole laundry procedure? i feel like i'm constantly doing laundry, and it is in a constant state of either being in the dryer, in the hamper, or on the floor. we installed a pretty nice (and pricey) closet organizer in our walk in closet, and the hangers are all but empty because clothes never make it that far! we do better with DDs clothes since they are smaller and just kept in bins under her bed, but DHs and mine are insane!!!

Posted by: buried in laundry | August 4, 2008 12:12 PM | Report abuse

"I sometimes wonder if some of the other readers on this blog are as turned off by the nastiness, put downs and one-upmanship."

Not as turned off as they are by long-winded posts about nothing, and that display a limited vocabulary - to wit, the overuse of the term, "nasty" and all its forms.

"I used to come to these blogs to get practical advice, support, and humour, but I find that the online community is also rife with meanies."

Meanies? Are you for real? Grow up!

The online community is full of as broad a range of personalities as the off-line community. In neither of them do adults refer to other adults as meanies.

You don't know me...why do you automatically go for the smackdown? Does it make you feel superior or better about yourself?

Posted by: Huckleberry Friend | August 4, 2008 10:38 AM

It doesn't make me feel anything. Your experiences don't have any relevance to my self-esteem. If you consider every online dispute over appropriate terminology and attitudes to be a smackdown, the world must be a terrifying place. I don't express my opinions for the purpose of feeling any particular emotion. Communication is a cerebral exercise for many of us. If you want friends, sign up for a mom's morning out group. If you want your assumptions stretched a little, be brave enough to test your ideas out online. The web - not for the fearful, insecure, or those who project their motives on strangers.

Meanies, indeed.

Posted by: fugeddabout it | August 4, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: the article that trolls don't want others to read | August 4, 2008 11:23 AM

You've been posting about this article for more than a week. Everyone's read it. *yawn*

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 12:19 PM | Report abuse

I am usually a lurker and do just try to not read the nasty snarks that some people get so much thrill out of. Like Donna and Huckleberry Friend, I WAS interested is seeing what others had to say about tips for managing the day to day lives in their household. I didn't know it was going to be a snarkfest. One can't help reading the posts when they appear one right after another, but to point out to someone to NOT read them puts the whole idea of a blog to posts that DON'T get read. I guess the sheer joy of the snarky posters is to take out their frustrations on the keyboard and then hit submit (which I am now doing, but only because I just couldn't help wonder where the topic of this blog went).

Posted by: why the nastiness | August 4, 2008 11:09 AM

I am a lurker who would like to read tips, too. I can't though when a bunch of hall monitors go on and on about how they wish everyone would post tips. Do you get the irony?

Do you have any tips to offer or only scolding?

Here's mine. You can't manage a household when you are so busy telling adults what to post on a blog that you forget to turn off the iron.

Posted by: tired of the scolding | August 4, 2008 12:22 PM | Report abuse

amen Huckleberry Friend - I'm sure your daughter is beautiful and really, this nastiness is just excessive

Posted by: usually a lurker | August 4, 2008 10:41 AM

interesting moral compass.

is there a quantity of nastiness that is not excessive?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Can't wait for today's online chat!!!!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Wow, you passed 5th grade grammar, I am so proud of you!

Posted by: TO Grammar Sheriff | August 4, 2008 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Does Kathy Peel = Mrs. Peel?

Posted by: John Steed | August 4, 2008 12:29 PM | Report abuse

We started to use an online calendar as well. Hasn't proved too helpful yet.

We also are implementing a weekly dinner menu.

Lastly, my husband and I check-in with one another once in the am, and then once in the afternoon to see what the nightly schedule looks like.

Posted by: Lou | August 4, 2008 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Sigh. So many newbies; so little time.

The folks referred to in the NYT article, and many who post here, are not "trolls". Trolling is taken from the fishing term - throw out a piece of bait, cruise slowly, and see if someone will bite.

The people referred to in the NYT article are simply *punks*; as in a young ruffian or hoodlum; typically unimportant; with somewhat of an anarchic bent. They tend to regard their own short-term pleasure as more important than societal good.

As to why they would post here or in other blogs: because they can, and because it's fun. It's fun to deflate what you perceive to be a pompous gasbag, and one who's good enough can go for either the slow leak or for the spectacular, Hindenburg-style explosion.

Punks often tend to flame or attack a single target - someone or something they think is deserving. The "pompous gasbag"; someone who did them wrong; someone who did somebody else wrong; whoever.

Trolls can and should be ignored. The fish that doesn't take the troller's bait doesn't get caught. And taking the bait just reveals you as a newbie.

Punks can sometimes be ignored; on occasion they must be responded to. On this blog ignoring them tends to work best.

On another topic:

"I have also noticed that the NY Times comments seem to be pretty thoughtful. There is a lot less 'trolling' there. I don't know how they do it, but they do."

Umm, the NYT comments are moderated. The troll and flame posts simply never make it to the screen; they're deleted by the moderator and the moderation software.

Topic? Don't talk about topic. Topic - are you kidding me, topic? We're just trying to get another post in here - don't talk to me about "topic." (With apologies to Jim Mora.)

Posted by: ArmyBrat | August 4, 2008 12:36 PM | Report abuse

To John Steed: "Does Kathy Peel = Mrs. Peel?"

No, that's Emma Peel. And the one and only Honor Blackman was the best ever in the role.

Posted by: m2j5c2 | August 4, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Dad-rat it; I knew I'd get that wrong. Diana Rigg was Emma Peel - Honor Blackman's character was called Cathy Gale. I sentence myself to six hours watching old episodes to ensure that I never make that mistake again!

Posted by: m2j5c2 | August 4, 2008 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Didn't Diana Rigg play Emma Peel?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Wow, you passed 5th grade grammar, I am so proud of you!

Posted by: TO Grammar Sheriff | August 4, 2008 12:24 PM

But others here obviously did not pass it!

Posted by: Grammar Sheriff | August 4, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

There has been a total of 23,641 comments submitted to this blog since its debut on Feb 8, 2007.

Of those comments, 4,765 (approx 20%) have been submitted since the Onbalance blog discontinued on June 20, 2008.

YTD stats:
Before June 20, 2008: average 52 comments per topic
After June 20, 2008: average 190 comments per topic

Posted by: Blog Stats | August 4, 2008 12:44 PM | Report abuse

army brat,

Your whole post was annoying. Why is it your job to define people? You call all the people who aren't on this blog day and night "newbies." Newsflah: Scrubs has been on forever and the term "Newbie" is old and overused. Your post just makes you sound old and boring.

Respond to what you want to respond to and leave the other posters alone.

Posted by: annoyed regular | August 4, 2008 12:46 PM | Report abuse

Blog stats: Are you saying that the increase in comments is due to the lateral transfer of OB patrons? Or do you think it is a coincidence - LOL?

Posted by: Me | August 4, 2008 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Wow, you passed 5th grade grammar, I am so proud of you!

Posted by: TO Grammar Sheriff | August 4, 2008 12:24 PM

But others here obviously did not pass it!


Posted by: Grammar Sheriff | August 4, 2008 12:42 PM

I just thought I would give you something to work on because you want attention.

Posted by: Nope | August 4, 2008 12:48 PM | Report abuse

Nice sentence fragment.

"But others here obviously did not pass it!"

Posted by: to grammar sherrif | August 4, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

"Your post just makes you sound old and boring.

Respond to what you want to respond to and leave the other posters alone"

Newsflash, armybrat is old and boring. Well, not really a newsflash, since anyone reading for a while already knows that.

Posted by: bore someone else armybrat | August 4, 2008 12:52 PM | Report abuse

to Nope and To G...

I am pleased that I made your day happy!

Posted by: Grammar Sheriff | August 4, 2008 12:54 PM | Report abuse

to Nope and To G...

I am pleased that I made your day happy!

Yeah right, you are just rattled because you can dish it out but you can't take it.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

I am pleased that I made your day happy!

Can a day be happy? Can a day feel?

See how annoying it is to pick at people's writing?

Posted by: to grammar sherrif | August 4, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Oh, I am pleased twice over this morning, 12:56!

Posted by: Grammar Sheriff | August 4, 2008 12:58 PM | Report abuse

... anyone else notice that although she bristles at the term "housewife" -- opting instead for the gender-neutral and politically correct "family manager" -- that when it comes time to market her book for $$$ she drops the act and calls it a "Busy Mom's Guide?"

Posted by: Interesting | August 4, 2008 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Yeah right, you are just rattled because you can dish it out but you can't take it.

Posted by: | August 4, 2008 12:56 PM

The Theory of the Green Hair in action. Step away from the troll, now.

Posted by: ah-ha! | August 4, 2008 12:58 PM | Report abuse

The fact still remains that the title to the blog is poorly constructed. Or, it means that other parents should run your life!

Posted by: Grammar Sheriff | August 4, 2008 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Childish at 11:08, thank you! I couldn't have said it better myself. I think these people who have to smack down others are in some form of incurable anger and bitterness. Maybe those birthing hormones are to blame.

If these people are so nasty to complete strangers, I'd hate to meet one in person or -- God forbid! -- their spawn.

Posted by: Lunch breaker | August 4, 2008 1:01 PM | Report abuse

AB - I don't understand why people call you annoying. I appreciate your illuminations and ruminations, especially the difference between a troll and a punk. We both know we used the word 'newbie' back in the early 80s at least. some annoyed regular needs to sit down and actually read your post more slowly or something.

Question for the online talk: Your suggestions seem like more work than truly necessary. Sure, one needs to organize chores etc., but in most cases, just set up a chore list and say "no-extras" until the chores are done works plenty fine enough. Why do you believe management techniques are truly necessary in family sitations?

Posted by: dotted | August 4, 2008 1:01 PM | Report abuse

If these people are so nasty to complete strangers, I'd hate to meet one in person or -- God forbid! -- their spawn.

Posted by: Lunch breaker | August 4, 2008 1:01 PM

Not to worry. If you read the NY Times article, you'll find that trolls are gutless wonders who function best in anonymity.

Posted by: have a nice lunch break | August 4, 2008 1:05 PM | Report abuse

Sigh. So many newbies; so little time.

The folks referred to in the NYT article, and many who post here, are not "trolls". Trolling is taken from the fishing term - throw out a piece of bait, cruise slowly, and see if someone will bite.

The people referred to in the NYT article are simply *punks*; as in a young ruffian or hoodlum; typically unimportant; with somewhat of an anarchic bent. They tend to regard their own short-term pleasure as more important than societal good.

As to why they would post here or in other blogs: because they can, and because it's fun. It's fun to deflate what you perceive to be a pompous gasbag, and one who's good enough can go for either the slow leak or for the spectacular, Hindenburg-style explosion.

Punks often tend to flame or attack a single target - someone or something they think is deserving. The "pompous gasbag"; someone who did them wrong; someone who did somebody else wrong; whoever.

Trolls can and should be ignored. The fish that doesn't take the troller's bait doesn't get caught. And taking the bait just reveals you as a newbie.

Punks can sometimes be ignored; on occasion they must be responded to. On this blog ignoring them tends to work best.

On another topic:

"I have also noticed that the NY Times comments seem to be pretty thoughtful. There is a lot less 'trolling' there. I don't know how they do it, but they do."

Umm, the NYT comments are moderated. The troll and flame posts simply never make it to the screen; they're deleted by the moderator and the moderation software.

Topic? Don't talk about topic. Topic - are you kidding me, topic? We're just trying to get another post in here - don't talk to me about "topic." (With apologies to Jim Mora.)

Posted by: ArmyBrat | August 4, 2008 12:36 PM

another long, boring, windbag post from armybrat.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

buried in laundry - try taking your hangers with you into the laundry room. as you take your clothes out of the dryer putting them on the hangers. then carry your clothes on their hangers to the closet. when we remodeled our house i moved the w/d upstairs. they're actually in the bathroom. i take my clothes off & put them in the washer.

Posted by: quark | August 4, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

There is a new sheriff in town

Posted by: HAHAH | August 4, 2008 1:08 PM | Report abuse

1:05 -- so are bloggers.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 1:08 PM | Report abuse

"The fact still remains that the title to the blog is poorly constructed. Or, it means that other parents should run your life!"

title of the blog!

Posted by: new sheriff | August 4, 2008 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Maybe grammar sheriff should become grammar deputy?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 1:11 PM | Report abuse

If these people are so nasty to complete strangers, I'd hate to meet one in person or -- God forbid! -- their spawn.

Posted by: Lunch breaker | August 4, 2008 1:01 PM

I can handle "nasty". It's the pretentious windbags and their spawn that bother me.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Okay, folks, I'm out of meetings and have fixed the blog's headline. And Kathy Peel is live now, so if you're looking for more tips, head on over there for a bit. Despite her mom-centric title, I have found the tips to be useful for anyone regardless of gender. That's why the blog is written more gender-neutral than the book's title suggest that it is.

Posted by: Stacey Garfinkle | August 4, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Me;

I don't like to interpret any statistical results, but since the average number of comments has more than tripled since the end of OB, there is evidence that suggests that there are a significant amount of comments coming from former OB regulars.

Or perhaps Stacey has recently began blogging on more interesting topics?

Posted by: Blog Stats | August 4, 2008 1:18 PM | Report abuse

I feel...vindicated!

Posted by: Grammar Sheriff | August 4, 2008 1:23 PM | Report abuse

buried in laundry - try taking your hangers with you into the laundry room. as you take your clothes out of the dryer putting them on the hangers. then carry your clothes on their hangers to the closet.

Posted by: quark | August 4, 2008 1:07 PM

what a GREAT tip. i'm going to be doing this starting today!

see guys and gals, this is the type of thing we need to be talking about on the blog. donna, cecilia, nancy, and others, please chime in!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 1:23 PM | Report abuse

"And Kathy Peel is live now, so if you're looking for more tips, head on over there for a bit. "

So far, Kathy seems like a gushing teenager on MySpace. And I'm pretty cynical about how-to books with the word "Happy" in the title...What is her background?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 1:23 PM | Report abuse


16 DCer
-----

No way did I post that many, someone is posting as me.

Posted by: DCer | August 4, 2008 1:23 PM | Report abuse

I feel...vindicated!

Good for you, now go fix your other three mistakes.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 1:24 PM | Report abuse

hey, you who are too cowardly to post a name? yeah, you are also too dim to catch my point: all women, even supermodels!!, get cellulite! nice to see cindy c. is human! and i did say she looked good. you, on the other hand, are probably a toad.

Posted by: wats | August 4, 2008 1:03 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 1:24 PM | Report abuse

I have 3 laundry baskets, one for white, one for colors and one for towels and such.

Little Precious has such a fun time when "Daddy make a boo-boo, he put socks in the towel basket."

Posted by: Cecilia | August 4, 2008 1:26 PM | Report abuse

see guys and gals, this is the type of thing we need to be talking about on the blog. donna, cecilia, nancy, and others, please chime in!


Posted by: | August 4, 2008 1:23 PM

Thank you! Your post definitely brightened my mood today. I no longer feel like crying. I just wish people would leave atb and armybrat alone, they seem to have lots of great tips and suggestions for all of us.

Posted by: Nancy | August 4, 2008 1:26 PM | Report abuse

Or perhaps Stacey has recently began blogging on more interesting topics?

Posted by: Blog Stats | August 4, 2008 1:18 PM

ROFLMAO - Blog stats - you are hilarious.

Posted by: Me | August 4, 2008 1:30 PM | Report abuse

DCer;

You spent all last month whining about trolls and crying for registration.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 1:34 PM | Report abuse

I just wish people would leave atb and armybrat alone, they seem to have lots of great tips and suggestions for all of us.

Posted by: Nancy | August 4, 2008 1:26 PM

Ha, ha!!!!!!!!!!!!! Good one.

Posted by: Loverly | August 4, 2008 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Ever wonder why Sean (Diddy) Combs dropped the name "Puff Daddy"? Probably not. But just in case here's the P-Scoop. Comb's former football coach from Mount Saint Michael Academy recently told Steppin' Out magazine's Chaunce Hayden that Diddy would often be mocked by his fellow teammates because of his lack of muscle tone. "He was barley 150 pounds soaking wet," said the ex coach. So to enchance his girly A cup chest to more manly Double Diddy's, Combs would "PUFF" out his chest all day long. Hence the name Puff Daddy. Combs was always worried that story would get out and that's why he changed his name to simply, "Diddy."

Posted by: pdiddy scoop | August 4, 2008 1:36 PM | Report abuse

Good for you, now go fix your other three mistakes.

Posted by: | August 4, 2008 1:24 PM

Maybe those weren't mistakes but traps laid for you to fall into?

Posted by: Grammar Sheriff | August 4, 2008 1:39 PM | Report abuse

"Kathy Peel is called "America's Family Manager" by journalists and millions of readers. In her engaging and entertaining style, she delivers sage advice and smart solutions on how to:

Create a happy, low-stress home
Simplify busy schedules
Raise responsible, respectful children
Build a strong family team
Conquer clutter and get organized
Discover your God-given potential "

http://www.familymanager.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=20&Itemid=44

Posted by: Ahem | August 4, 2008 1:41 PM | Report abuse

Here's my question for the chat. lets see if it gets answered:

How do you handle the backhanded compliments from stay at home mom's who snidely make comments about how "clean" your house is? I'm the family manager, but we just don't have all the time in the world to keep it stepford-wife clean. how do i respond to the SAHM sect who criticze my housekeeping?

Posted by: Ojaime | August 4, 2008 1:42 PM | Report abuse

anon @1:07: "another long, boring, windbag post from armybrat. "

Which you for some reason felt compelled to copy and repost in its entirety. Why?

annoyed regular @ 12:46: "Newbies?" "Scrubs?" Try again. The term "newbie" has been around the Internet since at least the early '80s; probably earlier but that was before my time. The term is generally used as "clueless newbie" but I was trying to be polite. :-) One of the points of that post was that the term "trolling" was often short for "trolling for newbies" - it was a way of finding out who among the readership had clue and who lacked clue.

If you want to take a shot at deflating this pompous gasbag you're welcome to try, but you're going to have to do a lot better than has been done so far. I admire people who know how to flame with skill, but so far that ain't you.

(Thanks to dotted for the nice comments. :-)

On topic, though: we don't use an on-line calendar; it's more trouble than it's worth. We've got a big honkin' wall calendar with 3-inch squares per day; everybody's supposed to write down where they're supposed to be and when (and also significant items, like "take cookies for bakesale" on it.) The kids know that if it's on the calendar we'll do our best to make it happen, but if it's not written down we're not responsible. And all family members are supposed to check for conflicts BEFORE committing to another activity.

Posted by: ArmyBrat | August 4, 2008 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Here's my question for the chat. lets see if it gets answered:

How do you handle the backhanded compliments from stay at home mom's who snidely make comments about how "clean" your house is? I'm the family manager, but we just don't have all the time in the world to keep it stepford-wife clean. how do i respond to the SAHM sect who criticze my housekeeping?

Posted by: Ojaime | August 4, 2008 1:42 PM

I tell them to shove it.

Posted by: Zzzzzzzzzzzz | August 4, 2008 1:46 PM | Report abuse

"Kathy seems like a gushing teenager on MySpace."

Gushing teenage girls, along with mid-level federal government employees run the US, if not the world.

Posted by: What else makes the world go round? | August 4, 2008 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Army Brat reminds me of a person who checks the air pressure in his wheelbarrow tire every week.

AB, what is that proper pressure?

Posted by: What a life! | August 4, 2008 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Army Brat reminds me of a person who checks the air pressure in his wheelbarrow tire every week.

AB, what is that proper pressure?

Posted by: What a life! | August 4, 2008 1:48 PM

LOL!!!!!!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 1:51 PM | Report abuse

I feel for you if you're on the receiving end of nasty comments. Take a deep breath, put on your most beatific smile, look her in the eyes and say "Well, aren't you sweet!"

This is a line that works in a number of different situations.

Consider not letting folks like this into your home too. Why should someone who is clearly not interested in being your friend be a guest in your home?

Posted by: For Ojaime | August 4, 2008 1:51 PM | Report abuse

LunchBreak says: "If these people are so nasty to complete strangers, I'd hate to meet one in person or -- God forbid! -- their spawn."

Hey Lunch Break! Lunch on THIS for a couple of minutes and you can taste my spawn.

Posted by: Lunch on THIS | August 4, 2008 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Here's my question for the chat. lets see if it gets answered:

How do you handle the backhanded compliments from stay at home mom's who snidely make comments about how "clean" your house is? I'm the family manager, but we just don't have all the time in the world to keep it stepford-wife clean. how do i respond to the SAHM sect who criticze my housekeeping?

Posted by: Ojaime | August 4, 2008 1:42 PM

Peel's answer to this question really sucked. It was more of a non-answer.

Posted by: No surprises | August 4, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

They asked a good question on the chat that I would be interested in finding out answers to....

What kind of chores can a 6 and 3 year old do? What we do:
- Dishes from a meal have to go to the sink.
- They normally need to clean up their toys although we are hit and miss on that.
- The 3 year old will hand me dishes from the dishwasher and will also put away the cutlery if you give her a chair and the cutlery box from the dishwasher.

We often ask them to help with other little chores but normally I am at a loss at what is age appropriate for them.

Posted by: Billie | August 4, 2008 1:58 PM | Report abuse

I think these people who have to smack down others are in some form of incurable anger and bitterness. Maybe those birthing hormones are to blame.

If these people are so nasty to complete strangers, I'd hate to meet one in person or -- God forbid! -- their spawn.

Posted by: Lunch breaker | August 4, 2008 1:01 PM

Lunch breaker, so what does it say about you that your comment smacks of bitterness and anger? Ironic, much?

I'd hate to meet you in person whether or not there is a God.


Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 2:05 PM | Report abuse

give them one of those disinfecting wipes to wipe down counters (on a stool) or their dinner table chair or even the baseboards

"folding" towels and t-shirts (or other items that can be crumpled is also a good intro to laundry for them; you just can't be too anxious about the actual folds

Posted by: 3-year-old chores | August 4, 2008 2:06 PM | Report abuse

this was probably about armybrat and his wife:

Arlington, Va.: I realize you aren't a marriage counselor, but suppose you have a spouse who is unwilling to help out at all with organizing or picking up the home? Barring the intervention of a counselor or a dramatic change in behavior from said spouse, what can you do to keep some order? Fortunately, this is not my situation, but I am watching a friend with a toddler go through it right now, and it is (as you might imagine) very difficult. It's causing a lot of problems for the family as a whole.

Posted by: ArmyBrat's wife | August 4, 2008 2:09 PM | Report abuse

How do you handle the backhanded compliments from stay at home mom's who snidely make comments about how "clean" your house is? I'm the family manager, but we just don't have all the time in the world to keep it stepford-wife clean. how do i respond to the SAHM sect who criticze my housekeeping?

Posted by: Ojaime | August 4, 2008 1:42 PM

You hope they don't stay long enough to share tips with you or start chatting about the FlyLady or some other nonsense. Take confidence that you are a more interesting person than anyone who would notice or comment on the cleanliness of your house. Seriously, is there a more dull topic in the universe? Pity these women. Their husbands ultimately will leave them for women who neither notice nor care about the baseboards.

Posted by: Bella | August 4, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Please help me. I'm a pregnant mother of a 2-year old and my husband and I both work. I have started so many organizational systems but I never keep them going. Mail sits in piles around our house. Half of my wardrobe is on our bedroom floor -- clean or unclean -- at any time. Many days we do the minimum: work, spend time with our daughter, eat take out and then fall asleep before 10pm. The junk is so backed up in our house now I wouldn't even know where to begin. Even the thought of making a comprehensive to-do list makes me sweat. At this point I'll take suggestions even from the trolls!

Posted by: Denkpaard | August 4, 2008 2:14 PM | Report abuse

"Fortunately, this is not my situation, but I am watching a friend with a toddler go through it right now, and it is (as you might imagine) very difficult."

I have a friend who suffers from erectile dysfunction, and I -- oops, I mean, my friend - . . . ."

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 2:15 PM | Report abuse

"What kind of chores can a 6 and 3 year old do?"

Fetch beer and throw away the empties.

Posted by: JP Guzzler | August 4, 2008 2:17 PM | Report abuse

2:09 - wrong, try again. Not Arlington. No toddler. And the relationship's just a bit better than that.

If you keep trying, I'm sure you'll come up with something interesting to say.

Posted by: ArmyBrat | August 4, 2008 2:18 PM | Report abuse

How "clean'' the house is stuff.

"Seriously, is there a more dull topic in the universe?"

Posted by: Bella | August 4, 2008 2:11 PM

Yes. Bragging about unremarkable children.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 2:19 PM | Report abuse

1:48: "AB, what is that proper pressure?"

Any self-respecting engineer would RTFM. It's also inscribed on the tire. Or you could just get a solid-rubber tire and not worry about it. In your case RFTM is probably the best answer.

Today's environment: high lameness, with a slight chance of clue sometime later on this afternoon if we're lucky.

Posted by: ArmyBrat | August 4, 2008 2:21 PM | Report abuse

Oh! Come on AB, you know you check the air in those tires as part of your periodic PM.

Posted by: What a life! | August 4, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Not to be too serious or anything but, to answer Denkpaard;
One thing I have to do to keep the mail from taking on a life of it's own is to have a paperbag on the floor in the foyer next to the table where the mail gets placed. I also have a bin on the table. As soon as I bring the mail in it gets sorted - junk mail goes into the paper bag for recycling and bills, filing goes into the bin. I can see my table most days.

Posted by: Me | August 4, 2008 2:34 PM | Report abuse

comments has more than tripled since the end of OB, there is evidence that suggests that there are a significant amount of comments coming from former OB regulars.
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
At least those insufferable bores Matt from Aberdeen and Fred did not come over!

Posted by: Da' Shark | August 4, 2008 2:36 PM | Report abuse

From the Peel online chat:

"Pick a night..farm the kids out or get a baby sitter and go out for dinner. (pick a time in the month when you don't have raging hormones and you can hang on to yourself :))"

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

"I don't mean to sound sexist, but in my experience I've found that a lot of men don't understand what it takes to keep a home and family operating. But really, if I walked into my husband's office and wanted to help out, I wouldn't know all that needed to be done."

This and a few other comments by Kathy Peel about letting husbands behave in certain ways, etc. explains why Kathy Peel writes everything to women. In her world, men run companies. Women run homes. That's her view of the universe. Of course, she is not a fan of Equal Parenting. She doesn't believe the genders are equal. We need this tripe from OP?

Posted by: Layna | August 4, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

What is the educational background of Ms. Peel?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 2:42 PM | Report abuse

The PSI on the tire is the maximum safe pressure for the tire; it does not take into account of the weight of (occupants if any) and other loads. Please refer to the owner's manual for proper pressures and maximum load capacity for a loaded vehicle or wheelbarrel!

Posted by: pop that tire! | August 4, 2008 2:43 PM | Report abuse

At this point I'll take suggestions even from the trolls!

Posted by: Denkpaard

my advice is be kind to yourself & lower your standards. i only have 1 child & i think he was 3 or so before i got back into some kind of schedule. obviously, you are getting things done since you mention that you have clean clothes. it sounds like dishes are getting washed. right now your house is probably full of baby/toddler stuff. in another couple of years that will go away as your children out grown the baby swing, the saucer, and other things. get rid of those as they are out grown unless you plan on having a 3rd. consign/ebay/donate.

Posted by: quark | August 4, 2008 2:45 PM | Report abuse

She also wrote "Consider that many men like choices"...
Duh - don't we all?

This sounds like a Betty Crocker cookbook from 1955.

Posted by: More drivel | August 4, 2008 2:46 PM | Report abuse

The PSI on the tire is the maximum safe pressure for the tire; it does not take into account of the weight of (occupants if any) and other loads. Please refer to the owner's manual for proper pressures and maximum load capacity for a loaded vehicle or wheelbarrel!

Posted by: pop that tire! | August 4, 2008 2:43 PM

Does this ever make me I feel like dropping my panties!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 2:50 PM | Report abuse

re chores for 3 and 6 year olds:

1. Sort the laundry and help throw it in the washer.

2. Help fold and put away their clothes.

3. Clean up toys.

4. Put the plastics and cutlery from the dishwasher away.

5. Clear their plates/cups from the table after meals.

6. Straighten their beds

7. Put laundry in their baskets (my kids know their clothes won't get washed if the laundry's not in the right place).

8. Sort through old clothes and toys for giveaway.

9. Wash the lower part of shower doors or the bathtub. A wet washcloth with a little soap can become a fun game.

Just don't expect any of these things to be done perfectly by adult standards. But they can be done well enough for many of us.

Posted by: Stacey Garfinkle | August 4, 2008 2:54 PM | Report abuse

AB-guffah from Chapel Hill with you! RTFM.... oh oh, I'm going to have to share that one with the tire-meister, the one in this house who seems to buy something from Griot's Garage catalog every time I turn around (tho the automatic easy-read tire pressure gauge is a real winner, imho)

Posted by: dotted | August 4, 2008 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Does this ever make me I feel like dropping my panties!

Posted by: | August 4, 2008 2:50 PM

You must be an automotive engineer!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 2:56 PM | Report abuse

This sounds like a Betty Crocker cookbook from 1955.

Posted by: More drivel | August 4, 2008 2:46 PM

You got that right!

More from Kathy Peel:

"Keep in mind that reason, not emotion, usually catches a man's attention.
Before you talk about your frustrations and feelings, listen to his."

This is standard issue '50s BS.

Now, thanks to ArmyBrat, though, I can start using RTFM in a plethora of communications. No emotion. Simply reason.

Posted by: MN | August 4, 2008 2:57 PM | Report abuse

Does this ever make me I feel like dropping my panties!

Posted by: | August 4, 2008 2:50 PM

If you prefer to get busy with that lug in the La-Z-Boy - the one with the remote control velcroed to his wrist - have at it!

Posted by: Lana | August 4, 2008 3:01 PM | Report abuse

"Good for you, now go fix your other three mistakes.

Posted by: | August 4, 2008 1:24 PM

Maybe those weren't mistakes but traps laid for you to fall into?"

I will buy that when you stop correcting other people's grammar. You make mistakes too, which has been pointed out all day on this blog.

Posted by: please | August 4, 2008 3:01 PM | Report abuse

Army brat told people not to respond to punks or trolls, but then responded anyway.

I love it. Today has been the best day ever. With the grammar sherrif smack down, the talk of not putting out, and army brat's lovely rant about trolls and punks.

My day IS happy now.

Posted by: love it | August 4, 2008 3:04 PM | Report abuse

i wonder if army brat is married to atb? they seem to go hand in hand together.

Posted by: uvaini | August 4, 2008 3:05 PM | Report abuse

I still want to know what RTFM means.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

"annoyed regular @ 12:46: "Newbies?" "Scrubs?" Try again"

Sorry, I am not old or boring enough to remember the term from the 80s.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 3:12 PM | Report abuse

"My day IS happy now."

This would be qoute of the day.

Posted by: If Fred were here | August 4, 2008 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Hey Denkpaard,

Regarding piling of the mail - we had this problem too, but (much like Me above) we put a paper recycling box right inside the door. If you sort on your way back from the box, you can chuck most of it as you walk into the house. Try to take care of the rest as soon as possible. I make it a goal to only touch each piece of mail once. It's not always possible, but when I do it, it really saves time and frustration in the end (and I don't lose a bill that needs to be paid).

We also use a white board and colored pens to make lists of chores, groceries, appointments, etc. We find that works pretty well right now, but we will probably have to upgrade to "a big honkin' calendar" when our kid is a little older and thus more scheduled.

I also second whomever said to use separate baskets for whites, colors and towels. If you can gently suggest that your family turn their things right side out before putting in the baskets, this will save time when folding.

I don't do this, but some folks put a load of laundry in the washer when they leave for work and then pop it into the dryer when they get home. Fold and put away before bed. Do one load a day this way and your laundry problems should slowly ease up.

I hope some of this will be helpful to you. And I second the advice to hang in there until your kid outgrows the large baby items - it's pretty amazing how that cuts the clutter factor.

Good Luck.

Posted by: VaLGaL | August 4, 2008 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Read the Fine Manual
**** RTFM Realtime Traffic Flow Measurement (Internet RFCs 2720-2724)
**** RTFM Read The Friendly Manual (polite form)
**** RTFM Read The Freaking Manual (polite form)
*** RTFM Read The Flaming Manual
*** RTFM Read The Fantastic Manual
*** RTFM Read The Flipping Manual
*** RTFM Read The Fscking Manual (Fsck is a Unix filesystem checker)
*** RTFM Read The Forgotten Manual
** RTFM Read The Fine Material
** RTFM Repeat the First Message
** RTFM Read the Famous Manual (polite form)
** RTFM Read the Factory Manual
** RTFM Read This For More
** RTFM Read The Furnished Manual
** RTFM Read the Field Manual
** RTFM Read The FAQ 'n Manual
* RTFM Read the Fortran manual
* RTFM Right This Freaking Minute (polite form)
* RTFM Reboot the Freaking Machine (polite form)

Posted by: RTFM per google | August 4, 2008 3:17 PM | Report abuse

"Army brat told people not to respond to punks or trolls, but then responded anyway."

Guilty. I just can't help myself; it's this self-abuse habit I have. But it's so darned funny sometimes to watch them try and demonstrate that they actually have a clue...

Sigh. I'll try to get better.

"i wonder if army brat is married to atb?"

No, though I'm sure she's quite lovely and I've been impressed by a number of her posts.

"I still want to know what RTFM means.'

It means "Read the manual." Insert the adjective of your choice as long as it begins with the letter "f".

"Sorry, I am not old or boring enough to remember the term from the 80s. "

That's understandable. It does not excuse your appalling lack of knowledge of history. You'll rise higher standing on the shoulders of those who came before you than you'll rise standing on their toes.

to "pop that tire" @ 2:43: ooh, good point. See, this blog IS educational. :-)

Posted by: ArmyBrat | August 4, 2008 3:23 PM | Report abuse

FYI, from our technology dept.:

"Starting at noon tomorrow, we'll be turning off comments on most post.com blogs for about 24 hours to allow for some sorely needed software upgrades and other maintenance.

So, get snarking while the snarking's good...

- Liz

Posted by: Liz Kelly | August 4, 2008 3:07 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

"This and a few other comments by Kathy Peel about letting husbands behave in certain ways, etc. explains why Kathy Peel writes everything to women. In her world, men run companies. Women run homes. That's her view of the universe. Of course, she is not a fan of Equal Parenting. She doesn't believe the genders are equal. We need this tripe from OP?"

Oh great a feminist who is still back in 1970. Men and women are different and dinosaurs like you who try to act like people are androgynous robots went out with bell bottoms. The only tripe is your tired cliches.

Posted by: it's woman, not womyn | August 4, 2008 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Denkpaard, stop having kids and get the place straightened up. Works so much better when there are no rug rats to trip over. Get the Old Man to pitch in and help.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 3:36 PM | Report abuse

I would hate to live in a house that felt like an office and I feel that's the direction that Ms. Peel advises us to go in. Regular day-to-day family life shouldn't feel like a business. No TPS reports for me!

Also, I find working moms often have cleaner and better organized homes than SAHMs, possibly because less time is spent in the house.

Posted by: Gloriamom | August 4, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

When I unload the dishwasher, I'll pitch the oddball cups or the ones that don't fit well into the trash. As long as there are clean cups available, kids will leave a half-full cup of water on the table or throw it in the sink and get another.

On occasion, I've been know to chuck every single plastic food storage container into the trash. Why not? I hate going through 10 plastic tops to find one that fits. When it gets to that point - bye-bye!

There is a downside to this remedy. I get blamed for every missing kitchen item whether I threw it away or not.

Posted by: Whacky Weasel | August 4, 2008 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Wacky Weasel, you are my hero!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Whacky Weasel: from where did the "oddball cups" and plastic food storage containers come?

Unless they're magically reproducing or burglars are sneaking things INTO your house, either you or your spouse brought those plastic food storage containers into your house. Why not just say 'no' in the first place?

Posted by: m2j5c2 | August 4, 2008 4:01 PM | Report abuse

Whacky Weasel: from where did the "oddball cups" and plastic food storage containers come?

Unless they're magically reproducing or burglars are sneaking things INTO your house, either you or your spouse brought those plastic food storage containers into your house. Why not just say 'no' in the first place?

Posted by: m2j5c2 | August 4, 2008 4:01 PM


and thanks for destroying the environment whacky weasel. its because of idiots like you that we have an ozone problem and pay $4.00/gallon in gas.

Posted by: vanni | August 4, 2008 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Uh - Wacky Weasel was being sarcastic and making a joke. Do you know what those are? Do you need a definition of sarcasm or can you look it up yourself?

Posted by: to vanni | August 4, 2008 4:15 PM | Report abuse

"That's understandable. It does not excuse your appalling lack of knowledge of history. You'll rise higher standing on the shoulders of those who came before you than you'll rise standing on their toes."

Clueless beause I prefer to think that Dr. Cox from the best show ever coined the term "newbie." I think not. What I do think is that you are so boring and annoying, that even the regulars can't stand you anymore.

Posted by: Someone please shut him up | August 4, 2008 4:15 PM | Report abuse

The only tripe is your tired cliches.

Posted by: it's woman, not womyn | August 4, 2008 3:28 PM

If you don't find Ms. Peel's schtick tiresome, including the line about how she wouldn't know what to do with her pretty little head at dear hubby's office, then the dinosaur resides in your mirror, IWNW. Try a little less emotion and a little more reason.

Posted by: Bella | August 4, 2008 4:21 PM | Report abuse

What I do think is that you are so boring and annoying, that even the regulars can't stand you anymore.

Posted by: Someone please shut him up | August 4, 2008 4:15 PM

Speak for yourself, bozo, and GO AWAY!

Posted by: I know ArmyBrat. Army Brat is a good friend of mine. You, sir, are no . . . . | August 4, 2008 4:24 PM | Report abuse

I really hope they are teaching my kid the history of "newbie" in school.

Screw George Washington and Kennedy.

Posted by: Peeberry | August 4, 2008 4:24 PM | Report abuse

Speak for yourself, bozo, and GO AWAY!

I did and for most other people on this blog. Now be a nice newbie and flop off and find a clue with blue.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 4:25 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: I know ArmyBrat. Army Brat is a good friend of mine. You, sir, are no . . . . | August 4, 2008 4:24 PM

Oh great, armybrat got his sister to blog in his defense. YAWN

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 4:27 PM | Report abuse

"Clueless beause I prefer to think that Dr. Cox from the best show ever coined the term "newbie." I think not."

You acknowledge that you're not interested in facts or history; you're happier with your own little vision of the world. That's pretty close to a definition of "clueless."

Posted by: ArmyBrat | August 4, 2008 4:27 PM | Report abuse

Isn't the phrase 'buy a clue'?

Posted by: dotted | August 4, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Step away from the snark. Now.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

"Whacky Weasel: from where did the "oddball cups" and plastic food storage containers come?"

tupperware & Pampered Chef parties, grocery stores, Cool Whip containers. I think the companies the manufacture these products intentionally change the dimensions so they will be thrown out and bought again.

I used to buy socks that were all the same so I didn't have to spend time matching them up - another time saver.

Posted by: Whacky Weasel | August 4, 2008 4:37 PM | Report abuse

I think someone comes in my house during the day and messes it up while I am gone. Maybe it is the same people who mess with Wacky Weasel's plasticware. Hmmm

Posted by: Me | August 4, 2008 4:38 PM | Report abuse

Some tips on controlling the chaos:

1) Accept the chaos. Embrace the chaos. The chaos is your friend.

2) Have a few bins for storage - Toys in one, pillows, throws, in another, magazines, books, and newspapers that you are reading in another.

3) Put stuff in proper bin before going to bed each night.

4) Wash dishes as you go. Don't let anything pile up in the sink.

5) Don't be a neatfreak. If you have little ones, there will be some disarray at home. It does not have to look like a museum.

Posted by: Emily | August 4, 2008 4:38 PM | Report abuse

How's it going, Wacky? Long time no see.

Posted by: Emily | August 4, 2008 4:39 PM | Report abuse

You acknowledge that you're not interested in facts or history; you're happier with your own little vision of the world. That's pretty close to a definition of "clueless."

Oh my GOD, word evolution is now history. Well, crap I guess I shouldn't have learned the preamble or studied the Constitution.

But since we are talking history here, how about this one. I can't remember everything about history, like you, but I think Vietnam ended before the 80s started.

"Before it entered popular discourse by way of the Internet, the term "newbie" had a limited usage among U.S. troops in the Vietnam War as a slang term for a new man in a unit.[2]"

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Would you please shut the hell up? In case you hadn't noticed, you're even more boring than AB.

Posted by: To anon troll at 4:41 pm | August 4, 2008 4:43 PM | Report abuse

maybe you should make me?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 4:47 PM | Report abuse

Ooooh. Clever. How old are you? 6?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 4:48 PM | Report abuse

STFU

Posted by: to To anon troll at 4:41 pm | August 4, 2008 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Now kids - stop that bickering. Do I have to come in there and make you get along?

Posted by: Mom | August 4, 2008 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Would you please shut the hell up? In case you hadn't noticed, you're even more boring than AB.

Posted by: To anon troll at 4:41 pm | August 4, 2008 4:43 PM


AGREED. although we should be happy AB or atb arent responding.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 4:50 PM | Report abuse

You Mean Mommies suck!

Since you all suck so much, you can have fun sucking on THIS!

Posted by: Mean Mommies suck | August 4, 2008 4:51 PM | Report abuse

Ooooh. Clever. How old are you? 6?

Old enough to know you are either AB or one of his loser friends.

Posted by: troll to troll | August 4, 2008 4:51 PM | Report abuse

Nya nya nya. I know you are, but what am I? Your mother wears combat boots. When you were born, the doctor slapped your mother for having such an ugly kid. You are so ugly you look like your neck threw up.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 4:51 PM | Report abuse

AGREED. although we should be happy AB or atb arent responding.

They are probably crying somewhere

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 4:52 PM | Report abuse

My work here is done.

Remember to make a day happy.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Smack down tonight. The Mean Mommies versus the Loser Lizards.

My money is on the mommies.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 4:54 PM | Report abuse

So is army brat a mean mommie too?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 4:56 PM | Report abuse

Army Brat is a mean motherf****r, especially when wielding a baseball bat.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 5:05 PM | Report abuse

say "Good Night" Gracie

Posted by: to all | August 4, 2008 5:06 PM | Report abuse

This is just heartbreaking. Why can't we all just get along? It used to be such a nice blog, but the meanies have ruined it. Sob.

Posted by: Donna | August 4, 2008 5:10 PM | Report abuse

This is just heartbreaking. Why can't we all just get along? It used to be such a nice blog, but the meanies have ruined it. Sob.

Posted by: Donna | August 4, 2008 5:10 PM


I agree Donna. I can't read this blog anymore without crying. Everyone is so hurtful to everyone and call people names. I wish people would just be kind. What kind of world are we raising our precious children in?

Posted by: Nancy | August 4, 2008 5:16 PM | Report abuse

Donna - how are you doing otherwise? Are you ok after finding out that your husband is having an affair with your brother?

Posted by: Nancy | August 4, 2008 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Are you ok after finding out that your husband is having an affair with your brother?

I'll be okay. I just want them to be happy, and guess that it's better if we keep it all in the family. My Sister in law has been really supportive and helpful. We are thinking that a little partner swap will fix it all for us. I love happy endings.

Posted by: Donna | August 4, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

Please, for the love of god, who ever is cutting and pasting posts from this blog and posting them in other blogs, stop. We, in the other blogs are fairly smart people, we know how to navigate our way between the different Wapo blogs.

I am asking nicely, without using any snark or meaness...Just. Please. Stop.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 5:23 PM | Report abuse

Donna, what an exemplary attitude! Please keep us apprised of the status of the swap. Pictures would be a definite plus!

Posted by: Swap Shop | August 4, 2008 5:33 PM | Report abuse

"We are thinking that a little partner swap will fix it all for us."


Just when we thought Donna had nothing to offer, she comes up with a tip for easing the stress in our busy lives.

Partner swapping. Go figure.

Words to eradicate from this blog: "nasty" and "mean". Only adults with fully developed vocabularies, including NTFU and RTFM are welcome here.

Posted by: Angelina Ballerina | August 4, 2008 5:33 PM | Report abuse

Donna, what an exemplary attitude! Please keep us apprised of the status of the swap. Pictures would be a definite plus!

Posted by: Swap Shop | August 4, 2008 5:33 PM

Thank you. Well you know what they say. When handed lemons, it is best to make lemonade. No need to send pictures though. If you want to join us, you are more then welcome. The more the merrier.

Posted by: Donna | August 4, 2008 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Donna, thank you so much for the invitation to join you in a swap meet. You are a most gracious hostess.

Should I bring toys? Wine? Dessert? Condoms?

Posted by: Swap Shop | August 4, 2008 5:54 PM | Report abuse

What kinds of toys?

Posted by: Donna | August 4, 2008 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Isn't Donna providing the toys? Isn't that the least she can do?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 6:00 PM | Report abuse

Donna, I was wondering if I should bring my own marital aids, or whether you would provide them.

Posted by: Swap Shop | August 4, 2008 6:02 PM | Report abuse

I can't read this blog anymore without crying. Everyone is so hurtful to everyone and call people names. I wish people would just be kind. What kind of world are we raising our precious children in?

Posted by: Nancy | August 4, 2008 5:16 PM

A world where people who can't read blogs without crying end up in the nuthouse. With luck, someone sane will raise your children after you are safely locked away.

Posted by: blueberry hill | August 4, 2008 6:03 PM | Report abuse

Donna, I was wondering if I should bring my own marital aids, or whether you would provide them.

Posted by: Swap Shop | August 4, 2008 6:02 PM

She's already provided her husband. If you bring a bottle of Chivas, that's probably the marital aid you need most in this situation.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 6:06 PM | Report abuse

I'll provide the whipped cream and chocoate sauce.

Posted by: Donna | August 4, 2008 6:06 PM | Report abuse

That does not sound like the real Donna. Who's the impostor?

Posted by: Anonymous | August 4, 2008 6:07 PM | Report abuse

Donna, I don't know how to say this gracefully, but I'm into handcuffs. Do you think that Cecilia could persuade her law enforcement husband to let me borrow them?

Posted by: Swap Shop | August 4, 2008 6:10 PM | Report abuse

Is that you, Liz D?

Posted by: Donna, | August 4, 2008 6:12 PM | Report abuse

I really hope the real Donna doesn't read today's blog. Today's Donna doesn't write like Donna does. I claim Donna-bs today. Today's Donna is not the real Donna.

Posted by: Today's donna is not the real Donna | August 4, 2008 6:12 PM | Report abuse

Today's Donna is better.

Posted by: Today's Donna | August 4, 2008 6:14 PM | Report abuse

Today's Donna needs Today's Man.

Posted by: Today's Man | August 4, 2008 6:27 PM | Report abuse

Late to the game, as usual, but I just wanted to share a thought that springs into my mind every time I hear someone mention "busy lifestyle." Why is it that people market the kind of goods to "busy" people that they'll never have time to use? If someone is that busy, do they have time to read a book? If someone is so busy as to need an SUV, a juice drink, or a fast food product advertised on TV, why do they have time to watch TV? Or, are companies just using these buzz phrases to suck up to consumers and make them think they are busy and important and necessary?

Posted by: Mona | August 4, 2008 7:20 PM | Report abuse

fr Me:

>.. As soon as I bring the mail in it gets sorted - junk mail goes into the paper bag for recycling and bills, filing goes into the bin. I can see my table most days....

We live in an apartment complex, and there's (usually) a trash can right next to the mailboxes. Junk mail gets flung right in there, so it does NOT come in the house!

Posted by: Alex | August 5, 2008 9:52 AM | Report abuse

"Thanks for proving my point. I sometimes wonder if some of the other readers on this blog are as turned off by the nastiness, put downs and one-upmanship. I used to come to these blogs to get practical advice, support, and humour, but I find that the online community is also rife with meanies.

You don't know me...why do you automatically go for the smackdown? Does it make you feel superior or better about yourself? "

I concur I concur! Sometimes it makes me laugh at how insane some of the regulars are but other times it makes me shake my head in disgust. Every once in a while there is a post that provides useful information but you do have to weed through a lot of put downs and downright nastiness to get to them.

Does anyone know of a parenting blog that isn't quite so abusive?

Posted by: finally! | August 11, 2008 3:14 PM | Report abuse

jly Een plaatje zegt alles, toch ? wlw Het volledige rapport is hier te vinden. Lees natuurlijk k de blogposting. a f
Thanks for interesting post! mmc
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Posted by: ламинат | August 13, 2008 3:11 PM | Report abuse

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