under the influence of mucus

How old does a kid have to be before he stops leaving a trail of used kleenex? At least the kid wouldn't get lost in the forest--gross, but better than Hansel's bread crumbs. . except

and this is TMI

Seriously, seriously TMI

dog adores the used tissues. Not as bad as dogs' enthusiasm for used cat boxes, I know, but still.

I'm supposed to go wrap presents, so I will, but you can't make me enjoy this season. At least I don't feel guilty about not enjoying it any more. That's a relief. I think less effort and worry about the lack of Joy makes the atmosphere that much less falsely jolly ---- so that if some real jollity should slip in, we're pleasantly surprised.

But not this year, I imagine. I finally managed to shake the cough and got the boy's cold.

You know that part of A Christmas Carol? (And you know you do because you have the damn thing memorized--perhaps against your will but still, you do. I'm sorry.) Anyway. That part when Scrooge looks at the ghost of Marley and says "You're a bit of bad beef." That's the one part of CC that really rings true for me.

Because damned if a bit of bad beef or a bad cold or a stubbed toe doesn't turn me into a whole other character. Bad weather, the sniffles and my outlook on the world is transformed. Hey, we all start out that way. If we don't get some food, our lives fall apart and we scream and shake and howl. Pleasure and happiness as we knew it is over and gone. Just because some of us manage to rise above the infant stage doesn't mean we're all such grand, soulful creatures.

The lil punkins eventually grow out of the worst of the screaming indignation created by hunger but I can see the influence of hunger on my kids even after all these years. Arsenic hour still exists in our lives. And then add on other bodily issues and watch out.

If you'll excuse me, I must follow the trail of used kleenex to see if I can find the box the kid stole away from me and then I'm going to track down all the rolls of wrapping paper we've bought from years of school fundraisers.


  1. Poor Kate. I recommend a viewing of The Grinch Who Stole Christmas - NOT the Jim Carrey crap, but the awesome cartoon. Feeling a deep connection to the Grinch (pre-Christmas miracle) has always consoled me. Plus the song always massively cheers me up.

    Also I heard this story on NPR today and thought of you. Have you tried this? 80% less spillage!

  2. Boris Karloff! One of my kids had that book on cassette tape and we all heard it so much we had it memorized.

    Now I have to click on the link.

  3. oh hey! TINKLE TARGETS! I used to use them for potty training. When I got cheap, I used cheerios. Good idea to get the boys back to the old ways.

  4. I solved the teenagers' inability to hit a garbage can with their used tissues by collecting them for a week and then dumping them on their beds -- including the ones shredded by the furry people around here. They have never missed another garbage can since.

    Hope you feel better, Miss Kate. :)


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