Friday, January 8, 2010

In Which I Actually Make a New Years Resolution... and Documentation of my Failure as a Housewife

I don't usually make very many New Years Resolutions. Can you imagine how depressed I would be at the end of the year if instead of just feeling like I didn't do a lot of stuff in general, I actually had a bullet point list of my failures? Talk about suicide by friction.

Anywho, I don't make a list. But I finished the complete draft of my new novel, and while my first wave of readers read it and mark it up, I had a few moments to look around my life, and the first thing I saw, I vowed to change.

Literally, it was the first thing I saw, because I was sitting on my couch and looking at the fireplace, and I saw the mantle. And the mantle is the perfect picture of my problem, the reason I'll never be a good housewife:

Up top, we have a framed map of the world, which is great because I love maps. (That should really go on the list of 25 things about me, but anyway...) But if you look closer, the map is wrong in so many ways. America's good, South America too... but then at the bottom of the world there's this blob of land, and I think it's maybe Antarctica, perhaps at a future time when it's about to take over the world.

And sorry to my friends around the world, but I don't see Europe, Asia, Africa or Australia. So, I'm proudly displaying either a map of the world on the day of Armageddon, or I'm displaying a map of Middle Earth, post ring, pre-hobbit.

Map discrepancies aside, my problem in my mantleplace really lies in the clutter. Take a look at the left side:

From the left:
1. Random tall white box. Holding nothing.

2. Nutcracker. It's there all year, not just for Christmas. And it's about to fall off.

3. Cheap silver plate, saying Hubby was a finalist in an Ice Breaker tennis tournament. Not to lessen his achievement, but this is tantamount to displaying a homemade blue ribbon that says my Hubby plays Ward Basketball, written in crayon.

4. This is my favorite. A framed Girls' Night Out picture. Don't those girls look like they are having the time of their lives, and thankfully there was a camera around to capture that moment? Only problem is, I don't know those girls. It's the picture that came with the frame. If you look closer, you'll see the box is still around the frame.

I didn't even bother to take the frame with the pic of the "fake friends, who are not me, on a GNO" out of the box. I just put it on my mantle, the place where you display your Artifacts of Precious to all the world.

People come over and say, "Aw, what a cute picture. You've changed."

And I say, "Well, apparently it was my wedding day, so that was a long time ago."

And they say, "You called your Wedding Day a Girls Night Out?"

And I say, "Makes you feel sorry for Hubby, Ha ha."

This. This folks, I would like to change. So, here's my first New Year's Resolution, written in big bold letters:

Before the Year is Out, I Shall Change out the Picture of "Random Girls", and put a Picture of Me and my Actual Girl Friends on a Girls' Night Out.

There. That should do it. Now it has to happen.


  1. Yes, we could probably clean up the mantle a bit...I will say that the silver plaque showing me as a finalist is not 'shout it from the hills' noteworthy. But if you will notice that is not just an ordinary nutcracker. It is a Nutcracker attached to a plaque that shows how I won (along with a very talented tennis friend) a presigious mens doubles tennis tournament during the Christmas vacation. That is a BIG DEAL! IT IS A BIG DEAL. It should be displayed and honored. I am fine moving it from the fireplace area though and moving it toward the front door where all of our visitors can see it.


    And you are a great wife.

  2. Literally laughing outloud. Thank you for a lovely start to my morning.

    we just moved & I have to say it's the WORST. Literally close to your "suicide by friction" idea but you do get rid of a lot of junk in the process.

    Good luck with your New Years Resolution- now that you've told us you are accountable to all of us come December!

  3. Sam- do you feel better now? I guess the Nutcracker award was so presTigious, it takes the T out of presigious.

    You are a great hubby.

    Olivia- at least there's one good thing you get out of moving! before we came to this house, we averaged moving once every 9 months for 7 years, and I never had the problem with junk that I have now.

    Moving is indeed a pain, but I fear the only thing that will cure my mantle is moving.

  4. lesson learned from brodi: instead of lamenting over my lack of housewifery skills, i will post pictures of the evidence on my blog and mock myself.

    my problem with the housework is that there are so many other things i need to do first: read blogs, write, lunch with friends, play text twist. it's hard to fit anything else in, ya know?

  5. Rachel- in the early days of my blog, I once took a picture of the junk found on my kitchen floor and blogged about it. Instead of cleaning it up.

    In fact, I think it's still there.

  6. I love that you post pictures of evidence like this! You are doing a favor to all the other writers of the world. My mother-in-law is a clean freak, and my hubby inherited that gene, and so thanks to him our house stays in relative order . . . unless you look too closely. We don't let houseguests upstairs for that reason. So all the evidence I can gather to prove that "this is just how your house IS when you're married to a writer" helps keep the complaining to a minimum from him. Thanks!

  7. well, at least you've given me one more reason to live today brodi...

    i actually LIKE my mantle.

    aside from that, would you like to come over and the the 9 GIANT trash bags sitting in my living room, waiting for me to go thru? (old clothes from a neighbor to see if i can list them for her in my ebay store)

    did i mention GIANT? sigh...

    i would rather be reading, in fact i think i will do just that!

  8. Nikki- I always feel sorry for Sam, being married to a writer, who would rather write about the mess than clean it up.

    Dorien- It's always a worthy cause when you give up chores for reading. Always!

  9. Ah, but what about when you give up chores AND writing for reading? Not so good, hey? :)

    We don't have a mantle, but the top of the entertainment center is usually quite cluttered. Fortunately, we put the nativity scene there every Christmas, so from December 20th (or so) through... well, January or February... there's less space to mess up!

    Girl's Nights Out are always a good resolution. I wish you luck.

  10. That's a great resolution, Brodi! It's something you can have fun doing in the process. You have so many fun nights with girls that the only hard part will be choosing which picture to put in the frame. Good luck with that!

  11. Come over to my house Brodi! I have a framed photo on the wall that has had the default photo in it for THREE YEARS. My SIL was just here for 1st time in a year and a half. "Hmm . . . so, that's the same," she said. Yep. One of these days.

  12. Robin- Let's just make it a blogwide rule, here and now, that any reader of this blog may henceforth give up any activity in favor of reading a book, without feeling guilt, shame or.... um... guilt.

    All in favor? Aye!

    Jenni- That's a resolution I can totally live with.

    Dear Sam: Henceforth, I demand more Girls' Nights Out. Make it so.

    Natasha- You're like a sistah from anothah mothah! Glad to hear I'm not the only one.
    Although... it's hanging on your wall? So you actually hammered a nail in the wall, and placed the frame with the picture of strangers on it?
    I can only aspire to such awesomeness!

  13. Yay, super yay! You finished your first draft. Give me a juicy synopsis. I'd love to hear what it's about!

  14. I'd do it just so I could TAKE the girls night out. ;)

  15. You're a riot. The framed picture really is hands-down the clunkiest decorating I've seen in a long time! And thanks to you - I feel much better this year about having no New Year's resolutions. Suicide by friction doesn't sound pleasant. Thanks for making me laugh today Brod!

  16. My favorite part, how I picture it. Dear honey, you know that thing you won? Yeah, just like a "I showed up for ward basketball" ribbon written in crayon. Sad thing is he didnt even play. He just stood on the sidelines wearing really short shorts and a sweat band around his head screaming go team go. Hehe. Good luck with getting that picture in the frame. If it helps at all you can email your picture to Costco and have them mail it to you after they print it out. You wouldn't even have to leave your couch. Well as long as you had Hubby bring you the frame so you could stick the picture in it.

  17. You're not a failure as a housewife. You're just domestically challenged. Me too! I won't go around the house with a camera, though. Nope, not gonna do it.

    Instead, I like to blog about my brief brush with fame. I put up pictures of my twin sister and I when we were on the Maury Povich show. (Yes, I did say MP.) Don't laugh and don't judge me. I got a free trip to NYC out of it.

  18. LeeAnn- Thanks! It about a girl who has just returned from the Underworld to go back to her high school.

    L.T.- I'm beginning to think it's a very good idea.

    Cath- I know. And that's not even the clunkiest decoration I have in my house! I'll blog about the clunkiest on Monday...

    Nicole- you and your twin were on the Maury Povich show? That is so cool! Definitely more blog-worthy than my boring old mantle.

  19. Debbie- ha ha. How did I not see you? I swear, I'm missing part of my brain lately.

    Your interpretation of events along the sideline of the ward basketball game is exactly correct. Were you there?

  20. you make me laugh every time Brodi. My mantel still house christmas decorations on it along with random boxes and an unused diaper and DVD's. My house is also littered with toys and baby powder that the two year old dumped out along with the pencil shavings from the sharpener that same 2yo dumped out. Not only am I a failure as a wife - I'm a failure as a mother.

  21. Mary- you can bet that if I still had a kid in diapers, there'd be a dirty diaper on the mantle too.

  22. Many kudos and congratulations on finishing your 2nd book!!! Being a good housewife is over rated...I should know :) If I were you, I would just toss the picture frame into the fire - problem solved.

    Congrats again!

  23. You have an award on my blog! :)

  24. Cam- but that would be the easy way out. And I like to do things the hard, complicated and all-too-often pointless way.

    Melissa- Thanks for the award! Where's my crown? Is it in the mail? :)

  25. I love it! Can I have first dibs on being in that picture in June? Post Biggest Loser Season 2? Raina also wants in on the picture. You make me laugh...all the time...HARTCHYA!

  26. P.S. Brandon thinks it's a big deal too sam. hartchya again!

  27. Strawberry Girl- Thanks for reading!

    Alissa- It's only fitting that the three of us are in the picture, considering you gave me the frame, while we were on an actual girls night out. :) Next time, we just need to bring a camera!