housewife survival guide. for the newlywed.

 

I have a friend who recently decided to give up the greatest freedom ever in exchange for something called nuptial bliss.  I’m talking single-hood people, not living in America.  My friend and her hubby are all cute and lovey and living in the middle of god-forsaken-nowhere-Montana or some place so they can live off the land and just enjoy being alone together or some delusional romantical jest.  Whatever.

Yesterday on her facebook she posts that they are finally getting television services hooked up to their cabin and how exciting it will be to watch something other than Anderson Cooper’s face through a blanket of grayish snow.  And I was so excited for her because last night was the Season Premier of Parenthood and she should probably get caught up on that show to make the drama of married life seem boring to her.  And because I freaking love it.  Yay for fall TV.

Then this morning I wake up to find her posting about now that they have cable and internet, (and oh my God how has she lived this long without the INTERWEBZ?!?!?!)  she isn’t sure if she should watch TV or play online or *GASP* do housework?  And I am immediately “Oh my god woman! Hasn’t anyone taught you the rules of housewifery yet?  Holy Shit let me break it down for you!”  And so here are the rules you guys.  Please make sure to share this with any single women you know.  I fear I may be too late here and she has already spent the first month of marriage doing crazy domestic dilly-dallying which he now expects and OHMYGODTHERE’SNOTURNINGBACK.  How was I not there for my friend before this mess started!?  HEED MY WISDOM!

Basic Rules of Wifery:

1.  Start slow.  This is the most basic rule there is, ladies.  You must pace yourself when you start this out or, let’s face it, your marriage is doomed.

When cooking, burn at least half of the meals you prepare per week.  You may be God’s gift to fine dining, but you need to give that man a wake-up call that this is not his mama’s house and there’s some rough roads ahead.  An occasional meal of PBJ’s also isn’t a bad idea.  This may feel a little beneath you for a few weeks, but  you just have to hold strong.  He needs to look back on these days in a few months and realize you have worked tirelessly hard to improve your skills for him.

Leave crap laying around the house for a while.  Don’t keep things spotless.  Leave a box of tampons out on the bathroom counter.  Leave his socks on the floor for a couple of days.  This puts simple boundaries in place.  You are marking your territory while simultaneously telling him you are not the effing maid and there will be equal work put in around this joint.

Put off doing laundry as long as possible.  (You may have to sneak a small load of your things in while he’s gone to make sure you can outlast him.)  This will ensure that once you do start doing laundry on the regular, but leave it in baskets rather than putting it away, he will not bitch and quite possibly will help put his own crap away.  This is housewife GOLD here folks.

You get the idea by starting slow.  Give yourself a few months to work up to your true self.  By the time he suffers through this time, he will think you’ve worked so hard to become a Grade A housewife, he’ll buy you diamond earrings for your three month anniversary.  It’s truly a win/win.

2.  Don’t spend your whole day doing crap around the house.  Listen, keeping your palace up to a quality living quarters does not take eight hours a day.  You are more than able to spend the first five hours lounging in your jammies and watching the Real Housewives of Everywhere every single day.  It takes three hours, at most, to shower and make yourself pretty (if you’re in to that sort of thing,) wipe off countertops and throw dishes in the dishwasher.  You can then chop up some veggies and throw them in a pan and by the time he gets home things will be smelling like dinner.  Take a few more minutes to throw some hot dogs on there too and it’s a meal.  This is not rocket science.

3.  {This is a mistake I made out of the chutes.  I fear there’s no turning back.  I also think he may have passed it on to the offspring.  Hear my warning!}  Do not find stuff for him.  If he’s missing some paper work and you know right where it is, just point him in the general direction casually.  Don’t, for any reason, go finding crap.  He will then lose his ever-living brain cells and thenceforward go about expecting you to find everything.  I swear to God in a few weeks he will cease lifting single sheets of paper to look under the stack for his own damn car keys.  You cannot let this happen.  Do not let on that your uterus is truly a navigational system for lost items.  This is a secret we must keep to ourselves or we will spend eternity searching for lost socks and someone’s quarterly report.  It’s just not an existence we want to suffer through!

4.  This is the most  important rule.  Do not start doing a certain chore if it is not something you want to be saddled with for the next fifty years.  Imagine for a moment your hubby has spent the first two years tirelessly mowing, edging and weeding your lawn.  Then one day, he has had a particularly long week at the office and you want to help him out and cut the grass for him.  This is a huge mistake!  Fight the urge to rescue your man and make his life easier.  Whatever you do, don’t give in.  As wives, once we give in and do an extra chore once, they automatically assume we’re just going to take over that job for the rest of forever.  That old “give an inch and they’ll take a mile” thing?  That’s 100% TRUE.

5.  This seems like a contradiction of rule number four, but it is actually just a tricky variation on the subject.  Occasionally, you may want to do something around the house that you know he’d like you to take on, but you’re just not willing to shoulder.  Let’s just use the previous example of lawn mowing.  When you cut the grass, do it in a way that has the neighbors wondering what crack-head lawn boy has been butchering your spring green.  Mess up the lines, go in three different direction and maybe take out a shrub or two.  When the hubs has a chance to check out your handiwork, act completely proud of your efforts as well as exhausted.  This will provide a) a chance for him to see that you really do think you’ve done a good job and are completely incapable of EVER doing this again and b)  a reason for him to tell you not to do it again. “Oh honey, that must be a little too strenuous for you, I better keep up on this chore.  WIN/WIN!

I know this may seem a bit underhanded to you newlyweds.  How could one ever be so devious and dishonest in marriage?  Well honey, honesty is the last thing you need in a marriage, trust me!

they that camp together…

“So hey there, have you been missing me?  Yah, I know.  I’ve just been suuuper busy.   Uh-huh.  I’ve just had stuff.  Super Important Stuff.

That’s code for, I’ve been such a loser and can’t get my shit together so I’ve just been hiding out on my couch eating a lot of cheetos and that squirt cheese from the can.  It’s been super awesome.  Seriously, I don’t know what my deal is.  I have never had writer’s block in my life, but lately I just plain suck ass at trying to put a sentence together.  But enough about me.   I really need to tell you about CAMPING.

So the Hubbs and I haven’t been camping together in  ummm… forever.  We certainly haven’t been camping with JORDAN.  Dude, that kid would take a dirt shower then roll around in the dirt to dry off and then try to clothe himself in a dirt wardrobe.  He was made for the dirt.  Camping… totally his gig.  He had a blast.  And Elle, she just hid out in the camper and did girl stuff and then roasted marshmallows and went back into the camper.  Whatevs.  She was hanging with her gal pals.  Both kiddos LOVED the tubing on the lake and all the usual boating activities.  They had a blast.   That’s totally not important.

The real fun came when the kiddos fell into a sun and marshmallow-coma induced sleep and the grown ups finally got to play.  There is just nothing like the crisp mountain air and smell of a campfire to make grown ass people lose their freaking mind. This is why I love my friends.  And am highly entertained by their friends.

Our first night in the great outdoors, we so pissed off the skinny bitch librarian “next door” that at half past quiet time she marched her happy ass over to our site and proceeded to inform one of our bunk-mates {ummm yah, I have no idea what that means.  It’s Swedish for “we camp together”} that it was indeed past quiet time and our fire was too bright.  She was being forced to move her tent to escape the bright light of the fire.  ERRR… WHA?  Quiet Time = No Fire Time???  I so did not read that on Smokey the Bear’s hat.  And really, it’s a camp fire.  Not the Burning Man.  Close your eyes.

{What is up with me that I am constantly pissing off my neighbors?!?  At least this bat-shit crazy woman got up and moved the next morning.}

Night Two:  The whole evening can be summed up by watching the following video.  I realize this is crappy videography or whatever but it’s shot with an iPhone, in the middle of the darkest of nights, being spot-lighted by a drunk with a flashlight.  The hero of our story is sporting a head lamp (AKA head lice),  purchased at our local sporting good store (AKA Tri-State) {when you see the video you’ll understand why you might care about this.  or not.}  We spent the entire dark time of our weekend having our retinas burnt out by the LED-ness  of this damn light.  It was only befitting that a song be sang in its honor.  Ladies and Gentlemen… meet Bobby Light.

Night Three.  There are so many things to be said about Night Three,  our last night in the woods.  Day/Night Three provided a Camping Trip Survival Guide that I will carry with me on all future expeditions.  Please hear me when I say this… no matter how much you offer to pay me, I will never reveal the source of my knowledge.  What happens in the woods, stays in the woods… sort of.

  1. It’s not a good idea to tell your Hubbs it’s his turn to be the campground drunk {and therefore idiot} at 10:00 am.  This will set your whole day off to a really, really interesting start.  Most Hubbs won’t make it to see dinner time.  Those that do,  will wish they hadn’t.
  2. There’s really no point whatsoever in packing real food of any kind for those who are legal to drink  (except for the makings of Reece’s Peanut Butter Cup  S’Mores).  We drink our meals here, bitches.  ‘Nuf Said.
  3. Assholes who show up to your campsite bringing beer to “apologize in advance” for their forthcoming behavior might be nice deep down inside.   Assholes who only bring beer for the men and ignore the women are just as we thought… assholes.  When they notice that your men passed out hours ago and show up to your campfire for some friendly chit-chat, consider flicking hot coals onto their pedicured feet and running into the woods.  It’ll be more pleasant than anything the next 30 minutes might have to offer.
  4. It’s never appropriate to bring up one’s step-dad’s saggy balls around a campfire.  If you accidentally do, it will provide unending entertainment for the rest of your “bunk-mates” as they talk about skinny bitches and saggy balls all weekend.
  5. It should be seriously considered that one brings along some “pocket cash” for emergencies.  Emergency cash, in this instance, is reserved ONLY for those times when  one’s Hubbs is on the verge of being taken to the clink for “disturbing the peace” {Peace, what peace?  I haven’t seen a moment of peace since we’ve been here!}  and certain Green Jeans (AKA Park Rangers, AKA the Po-Po) need to be bribed to save the night.  Said emergency fund MUST be kept in the pockets of the females only, so we can determine if we really want to bribe your asses out of the clink or not.  God knows we are far too well-behaved to be disturbing anyone’s peace!

There you have it,  folks.  Camping might be good fun, but it is definitely NOT good, clean fun.