Recession Mama

{April 27, 2009}   Recession and swine flu and head lice… OH MY!

By Heather

I’m not depressed, but I could be if I allowed the headlines sink into my brain. Swine flu, massive layoffs, deadly earthquakes and tornadoes, home foreclosures and economic crisis worldwide.

Whew! I already feel the need to pour myself a tall vodka and soda with lime and pull the covers over my head. But who has the time.

Mamas and papas… I could get myself completely worked up about everything. It’s so frightening to think that we’re actually facing the possibility of a pandemic and financial ruin. What’s next? The end of the world!

I need a good Scarlett O’Hara bitch slap about now.

Stop freaking and keep living…. I tell myself. We’re doing just fine.

I was doing just fine until I received a note from my son’s upscale pre-school warning parents about head lice in the classroom.

(pausing to scratch my head)

What? Head lice! There’s actual head lice in my son’s class! Doesn’t the pricey tuition guarantee this won’t happen?

(pausing to scratch my head even harder)

Look… I know that can happen to anyone, anywhere. But I don’t want to be that anyone. So I’m launching war on the little buggers even though we don’t have it (hopefully we won’t either)

I’ve purchased over $100 worth of shampoo, conditioner and gel to scare those critters away. The whole family has had a good scrubbing. The sheets and pillows scalded too. Even my son’s stuffed Tiger named “Tiger” has been washed and dried in high heat.

Blue Tiger

Blue Tiger

“Tiger smells like flowers mommy,” he says while burying his head into mine.

(more itching…slight panic)

Now all I need is a hunk of dark chocolate and a good show to calm me down. But frankly I’m a little worried about snuggling into the couch.

What if there’s lice in there? Eewww.

I know it’s a little overboard. But this is how I operate. Freak… ask questions later.

Thoughts of burning our mattress have crossed my mind too since the kids slept with us Sunday night. But purchasing a new one isn’t really in the budget. So I will deal.

Speaking of Sunday night.. that led up to “one of those days” on Monday.

You know what I’m talking about… days when everything goes wrong and it feels like the universe is against you?

Maybe it started with leaving your coffee on top of the car and driving off. Perhaps a flat tire on the side of the road. Forgetting your wallet. Dropping your phone in a cup of water and frying it (I’ve actually done this twice!) Or perhaps realizing you’ve shaved only one leg and have spinach stuck in your teeth while you’re on a date.

Well I didn’t even get one leg shaved on Monday. Nothing was going right. And before the day was over… I would have to spend money I really didn’t want to spend.

It started the night before when the storms rolled in. That’s when my son and daughter climbed into to bed with us… and a freaked out dog soon followed. (Ally’s terrified of storms. I once found her curled up in a laundry basket during a storm.)

Ally feeling humiliated at Halloween

Ally feeling humiliated at Halloween

I was sandwiched in between the kids on the bed. Ally was right in the mix. Another dog was snoring on the floor. My husband snuck off to the guest room for a good night’s sleep. (lucky)

The children took turns kicking me all night… while Ally switched from sleeping on my legs, to my stomach, to my head. That threw my allergies into overdrive. I stayed up sneezing, itching and rubbing my burning eyes. Just as well. I was having a hard time sleeping anyway. I was thinking about the possibilty that my kids could have lice. And here we all were snug as bugs in a rug.

(seriously… can’t… stop… itching)

Just as I had fallen asleep… my daughter pushed her nose against mine and yelled through gritted teeth.

“I want pancakes and chocky milk.”

So much for sleep.

Then the phone buzzes. It’s the renter sending a text message.

The oven is beeping and flashing an error code so I unplugged it. Can you send someone over?

It’s a WALL oven. How do you unplug a wall oven without pulling it out of the wall! Dollar signs start swimming in my head. I call the repair guy and tell the renter to check the breaker box.

Probably just a power issue I text back, but am secretly afraid of how much this will cost.

Next the painter arrives at our house, says hello and then asks;

“What’s with the tree in the yard?”

“What do you mean?”

“That’s what I mean.” He points to the tree.

“It fell over.”



Perfect! The 20 foot tree is now lying on its side and on top of newly planted flowers.

I phone the landscaper and beg him to save the tree because I don’t want to buy a new one. More money wasted.

Another text from the renter comes in.

“Can the repair guys check the dishwasher too? It smells like smoke when I turn it on.”


This keeps getting better.

By afternoon, we head to school. I turn on the SUV. The gas light comes on, as does the maitenence light. Lovely…

Can anyone say cha-ching!

At this point, I might as well hit a cash machine, throw money up in the air and twirl around.

Another text from the renter.

Everything is fine. It was just the power. The repair said it was working.

Things are looking up.

That is… until I pick up my son from school. Two notes are stapled to his bag. One is a warning about swine flu … another about an outbreak of strep throat and more cases of head lice.

Hey mommy. Tiger had fun at school today.” my son says as I continue reading the notes.

What? You took him?” as I rub my eyes and itch my head.

Parents: Please have your children refrain from bringing stuffed animals in school bags as they could be exposed to communicable diseases.


“Give me Tiger!” I say as I continue to rub my burning eyes.

Parents: Also avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth as germs can more easily enter your body through these areas.


I’m definitely going to need that vodka and soda now.


Katy says:

Heather, you are so funny! I just about peed in my pants over this post. I think I have the swine flu after reading a memo about it at work, but you have EVEN MORE to worry about than the silly swine flu! And I love that Tiger smells like flowers. It reminds me of South Park when Mr. Hanky asked the same question. But then again, Mr. Hanky is poo, and everything smells like flowers when you’re poo. Hmmm…that sounds like it might be a metaphor for something…

Heather B. says:

I’m laughing Katy. I love the reference. There is a metaphor in there somewhere. Just not sure what it is. Maybe it’s “When life hands you poo… grow some roses.”

Monica says:

Never had a lice scare, thank goodness! But I do know that if you put things in the freezer, it kills just about anything.

When Dane was little I would occasionally have to bag things in large zip-lock bags and put them in the deep freeze for a day or so before washing them. It works for killing things that cause allergies.(And lice.)

So, when in doubt, give Tiger a good freeze before you flower him up!

Heather says:

Thanks for the tip! I had no idea. I wonder if I can safely freeze my head?

Carla says:

Heather, I would’ve done a spit-take while I read this, but thankfully I didn’t have anything in my mouth at the time! Woman, your life is a sitcom. When it rains it pours, and I’m now convinced it triples when you have kids and in a recession. At least we can all laugh, right!?

Heather says:

Laughing is always the best medicine!

craig says:

You need to tell your painter to focus on his painting and forget about the the falling tree. One project at a time.

recessionmama says:

Darn straight Skippy! Except my painter keeps me on track. Don’t know what I’d do without him!

Jennifer says:

Love the post! I can just picture it all now. Heather, the recession drama momma!!! Got some of that shampoo you can send my way since your kiddos spent the night at my house!!!! I also hear heat gets rid of the little critter (lice not renters), so give everyone including Tiger a good blow drying daily and you should be good.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

et cetera
%d bloggers like this: