Monday, July 6, 2009

Vacation? Not really

Even though I am thoroughly enjoying seeing Alexander and visiting with Jenny, I am not enjoying what would commonly be called a vacation. They live over an hour away from Seattle and because she is nearly to term, she does not feel like doing anything. That's OK, but there's nothing to do in this town, either for me or for Isaiah. Luckily, he is enjoying playing his Nintendo DS and playing with Alexander. Plus, he also enjoys Noggin, which is on all day.

I, on the other hand, am terribly bored. There is only so much Noggin I can take. There is no air conditioning in the apartment and only today has the temperature dipped low enough to make the day tolerable. Because the apartment is so small, and overrun with toys and toddler things, there is no place to really sit. The only chair available is directly in Alexander's path to where he likes to play with his cars and there's no place to move it to. There is no storage space and no place to really relax. I feel like I'm going to go home more stressed than when I came out. I love my family but there is only so much of this that I can take.

I cleaned up the kitchen and put away food that was still sitting in grocery sacks; I cleaned up the bathroom and wiped down the sink so I could put out toiletry items. I cleaned off the balcony of cardboard boxes (they have a recycle bin with the trash) and carried out four trash bags of refuse. All things that Jenny just hadn't felt like doing. I told Shaun that he had to come home prepared to clean up and pare down as there was really no space for Kaitlyn or her things. I would think the stress of having too much clutter in too small of a space would be hard on Jenny but she's (luckily) able to block it out. Not I... I told her that I am a minimalist and I don't want to offend her, but the clutter is almost too much for me to handle.

I got a couple of tubs and started putting Alexander's toys in them in the evening, but once they're picked up there is no place to put them. They seriously need Clean Sweep or some other professional organizer to come in and help out. I also told Shaun that they should consider a housekeeper to come in twice a month to help out, but before that could happen, the housekeeper would need to be able to find a place to put the stuff. Until they sort and pare down, that won't happen. It doesn't help that the apartment complex won't let them hang anything on the walls (no holes whatsoever). I'm going to try and get some Command hooks and see how they work. Amy's used them before with no residue left behind so I think they'll work.

The kitchen is about the most unusable space I have ever in my life seen. No counter top space, no cabinet space, and no storage space. You can either have a place for your dishes or your food; not both. It's pathetic. Jenny likes Chinese snacks and because the closest Chinese market is over an hour away, she buys lots. There is no place to put them so they're just in sacks in the corner of the kitchen floor.

I didn't come to clean or to offend so I just sit. Because, if I truly cleaned then I would surely offend. I need a vacation from my vacation.



Pat said...

Since I'm new to your blog, I'm not sure your relationship to Jenny. Is she your daughter? I know it's hard to keep your mouth shut around your kids, especially when you see something that you think can be improved. We just spent 2 months near my daughter, her husband, and new baby. (We stayed in our trailer). I have a great relationship with my daughter, but once or twice I said something and it didn't go over very big. After that I thought, "Will it do any harm if I keep my mouth shut?" NO? Okay then, mums the word! LOL! It's always hard to stay at someone's house, whether it's a relative or not. Hang in there, I'm sure they appreciate your help.

Teresa - in the Middle Side of Life said...

She's my DIL and I love her to pieces. She is from Taiwan and is very submissive to parental figures. Since I don't want to offend her, and I wouldn't know if I did because she wouldn't say, I don't say anything. I've offered to help do a few things and she says 'No thanks' so I leave it at that. I just told my son that he needed to be prepared to pare down and organize things so there'd be room for the new baby.