20 Sep
My New Neighbor is Making Herself at Home…In My House!

Mornin’, Mouthy Minions! Another Guest Mouthy Thursday is upon us and this week, we’re hosting the very funny Kim from the blog Let Me Start By Saying. You may love her for her inspiring posts or funny parental anecdotes, but I love her for saying things like, “Get your vulva off my throw pillow.” (It should be noted, however, that she wasn’t saying that TO ME. Ahem.)

Take it away, Kim! –Kristine, TMH

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

I am married with two kids (5 and 10). We live on a small dirt road in the country. My husband and I are private people. Due to the nature of our jobs, we have unlisted numbers, are careful about our friends and are not super social. Add to this that I can be OCD and view my home as my escape, I am not a fan of guests unless I invite them, and I tend to want a criminal background check before I let you in my home.

Recently, a woman moved in behind us with her 12 year old son and he started coming over uninvited. This has escalated, however, and one morning I came downstairs in my robe to find him and my kids in the living room eating breakfast. Now, he’s usually here all day, coming with us on every outing, and eating all my food.

What has really pushed me over the edge, though, is that his mother is now doing the same! She has started coming over almost daily, unannounced, through the gate, in the yard, on my porch and in my house. No knock, no nothin’. Then it’s – can I have ride here, can I use your phone long-distance to call there, can I use some garlic, Motrin, band-aid, butter… borrow a movie, etc. I come downstairs and she is there! One day she needed butter while I was not home, and just walked in and helped herself!

I have never locked my door during the day, but we do now. I feel invaded. My sanctuary and privacy are gone. I am stressed. She has not taken any of my not so subtle hints (like, ‘look, we have guns and things upstairs, so please don’t go up there without one of us; my bedroom is really private; we’re leaving/eating/sleeping soon; I’m working right now, etc.) I don’t want to burn bridges, but JHC I am at my wit’s end with this woman! Obviously she was not raised with the same manners as I was, and she just does not get it. I am an introvert who is all but anti-social and super private. Which I have told her. Three damn times. I am ready to serve her with a no trespass order, or cite her for felony burglary over the butter! Help!

Signed,

Fed Up & Fired Up

______________________________________________

Dear Fed Up & Fired Up,

Ahhh . . . the country. So beautiful. So quiet.

So full of crazy-ass neighbors with boundary issues.

Finding the right balance between politely excusing yourself from such an intimate friendship and causing the kind of rift with a Nut Job Neighbor that will make it hard for the police to find where your body is hidden can be quite tricky.

But do not lose hope, my peculiarly private pet, for I have a few ideas.

The next time she comes a-plunderin’, answer the door while scratching your head violently, declaring a massive lice infestation. This should buy you 48 hours to hang blackout curtains over every window of your home, thereby making dodging her approaches much easier.

Rush-order customized Welcome mats for your front and back doors that say, “Nope, Still Not Home” and hang seasonal wreaths with delightful arrows pointing to freshly installed deadbolts, cheerfully declaring, “This Lock’s For You!”

If finances are tight due to your super-secret job, a less costly approach would be to (wo)man up and say, “I believe I haven’t been clear. I am a boring, practically mute, butter-hoarding Agoraphobic who hates people and knows how to use the many guns stashed around my home. Please stop coming over.”

If none of these work? Taser that freak sandwich and call the cops.

Someone who’s that determined to borrow your Band-Aids can only be interested in one thing: creating a life-sized doll version of you out of the dryer lint and stray hairs she steals from your home whenever she pops by. I can’t imagine you’ll sleep well knowing the woman bagging your butter by day is lovingly spooning your linty Doppelgänger at night. So be strong, sister. Be strong.

Best of luck exorcising the Demons,

Kim, Guest TMH

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18 Sep
I Know You’re 18 Years Old, But I Still Need To Know Your Facebook Password

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

When Facebook started being a thing, my younger brother was 14. He’d already had an account for a while, but my mother put a keylogger on their computer and took his password without informing him. Obviously, he found out eventually. Even though he asked that she at least ask for his passwords like a normal person, she used the keylogger to take the passwords to all his accounts on the Internet. He’s been pretty upset about that, as I hope you understand.

He’s moving out now, for college, at the age of 18. He’s moving out-of-state to an apartment he’ll be sharing with a schoolmate. My mother had a hissy fit when he changed his passwords and ordered him to change them back so that she could keep logging in. My brother’s response was that he was an adult, and since he was working and attending school on a scholarship, she was no longer paying for his lifestyle, much less his Internet connection.

As his older brother (I’ve been out of the house for a decade now) I’ve been asked to take sides. I think there’s fault on both sides, but you can probably tell I agree with my brother more. How can I clear the air?

Signed,

Stuck in the Middle

___________________________

Dear Stuck in the Middle,

This seems like a big no-brainer to me because, hello, your brother is 18-years-old. Eighteen! And therefore he’s legally considered an adult. He can vote, he can go to war, he can serve on jury duty and he’ll now be tried as an adult the next time he knocks over a liquor store. Plus, he can finally get into NC-17 movies by himself. Yay for boobies and violence! But the most important thing is that he can do all of those things, and more, without the help of his dear, sweet mommy. (And he’s not 14 any longer.)

The idea of her being privy to his online passwords is about as ridiculous as her waiting for him to get out of his English 101 class so she can wipe his bottom. That’s not up for debate. However, if she won’t let this drop, I suggest you try to find out what’s compelling her to be so weird about it. What is she actually scared of? Has he been in trouble before? Is she worried about his judgement? Is there some other issue going on that needs to be addressed before she can finally relax and let him get on with his life? Find out.

Then once you get to the bottom of her issues, maybe she’ll realize how crazy it is for her to spy on her adult child. Her adult child who is not being financially supported by her. And maybe your brother can also sit down with her and reassure her that he’s not doing anything more dangerous on Facebook than playing Farmville or Carnieville or whatever those games that I always get annoying notices about are called.

You’re a good brother and a good son to care so much about harmony in your family.

Best of luck,

Wendi, TMH

 

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17 Sep
Is It Ok That My Husband Isn’t My Best Friend?

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

This isn’t really a problem, but I want your opinion on something. A friend mentioned that she is married to her best friend. I love my husband and we have a good marriage, but he’s not my best friend and I’m pretty sure I’m not his. Are we doomed?

Signed,

Not Mrs. BFF

___________________________________________________

Dear BFF,

Guess what? I didn’t marry my best friend, either!  Mostly because when I was getting married, my best friend was dating someone else.  And now my best friend is a woman who lives in South Carolina and although I definitely understand the appeal of not living in the same state as your spouse (ESPECIALLY ON LAUNDRY DAYS, OMG), overall, I’m glad I married my husband.  Because he is the person that I fell in love with. And at least in my case of  almost fifteen years of marital something-close-enough-to-bliss, I’ve learned that it’s possible to have great marriage even when not married to your best friend.  I suspect that this is the case in many marriages, including yours.

I also suspect that “best friend” means different thing to different people.  (Look at how suspicious I am!) For some it means the person they feel most comfortable with, the one they can be completely themselves with, maybe even share a bathroom, if necessary. If that is the standard, by the way, I have no best friends in this world and hope to never have any.

For others it means someone with whom they share a life journey. For others still, it means someone they talk to about their husband frankly, without fear that they’ll be judged or their confidences repeated or sold to the tabloids should they gain celebrity and/or notoriety. So the people who marry their best friend are obviously deprived of this opportunity and deserve our sympathy.

While I understand your hesitation when a friend describes her husband as her best friend (especially if you thought you and she were best friends!) that is no reason to be concerned about your own marriage. Chances are when your friend says she married her best friend she means that she loves her husband and is happy to be married to him.  Hopefully it doesn’t mean that if necessary, she won’t gossip with you about him!

Here’s to marital bliss and friendship,

Marinka, TMH

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13 Sep
My Husband Was Invited to a Bachelor Party. My Married Husband.

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

My husband’s friend is getting married and is having a bachelor party! With strippers and everything! My husband said he is really looking forward to hanging out with his friends, but I’m annoyed and don’t want him to go. He thinks I’m over-reacting and told me that everyone goes to strip clubs once in a while. Am I a prude?

Signed,

Prudence
_____________________________________________________________

Dear Prudence,

Seriously, I just now realized that prude and prudence are practically the same word. Seriously, do other people know this? And is prune in that family too? English! What a language!

Here’s how I see your problem: Your husband is excited to see some strippers and you’re not really into human trafficking. It’s definitely a sticky situation. And it may be one in which you never see eye to eye.

But is it a deal breaker?

If your husband goes to the strip club and gets a lap dance but it goes no further, is that acceptable? How about if he maintains a respectful distance at all times from the..er..talent? What if he attends but averts his gaze and recites a few psalms?

Hopefully somewhere in there the two of you will be able to come to a compromise that you both can live with. But at the end, he has to make the call on this one. Because although not wanting your partner to go to a strip club doesn’t make you a prude, I so believe that grown men need to be able to decide what events they will and will not attend. And the trust that you have in your husband should not hinge on that decision.

Best wishes,

Marinka, TMH

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12 Sep
There’s Life on Cooking Planit

I’m a terrible cook. It’s true. And not “terrible” in the “this needs more salt” kind of way; “terrible” in the “mommy’s going to the Emergency Room again” kind of way. Cooking’s just not for me.

But because I have a husband and two kids who like to eat food upon occasion, it would be kind of nice if cooking was for me. In fact, I’ve long wondered if I’d cook more often if I felt more confident putting meals together. Meals that actually turn out and don’t prompt the response of, “Can we just have vitamins and water for dinner instead of this grody black stuff, mommy?”

Which is why I said “yes, please” when CookingPlanit asked me to try their new app. CookingPlanit works as a meal planner and recipe organizer, but it also gives fabulous step-by-step instructions on prepping and cooking your meals so everything is done at the same time. I know, what a concept.

I downloaded the CookingPlanit app on my iPhone, then looked through all of their meal recipes. (Unlike most cooking websites, they don’t have an overwhelming amount, which I appreciated.) You can either choose a complete meal or combine various entrees and side dishes, then Cooking Planit will generate a grocery list that can be printed or kept on your iPhone or iPad.

Then, once you’re ready to start cooking, Cooking Planit gives you step-by-step, timed instructions that are voice activated so you don’t have to touch your iPhone or iPad with “meatball hands.” For my first meal, I picked Zesty Chicken, which was comprised of Sautéed Chicken Tenders with Creamy Sun-Dried Tomato Sauce, Grilled Crostini and Sautéed Garlic Spinach. And, despite doing a few dumb things like dropping a knife on my foot and starting a small fire, the food was all done at the same time and tasted amazing. My husband said it was the best thing I’ve ever cooked, which is saying a lot after being married for 20 years.

Here’s what the step-by-step looks like with the start and finish times:

A couple of nights later, I made blue cheese steak, roasted green beans and a Bibb lettuce salad and even made my own dressing. That’s HUGE for me. Here’s a picture as proof:

It was really, really good and I’m still amazed I was able to do it. Cooking Planit has many more features and benefits that I can’t possibly detail here, so please take a look at their website and/or this video.

Cooking Planit is free on your desktop, but it works best with the app that you can purchase for your iPhone or iPad at the Apple store. (Droid coming soon.) And guess what? The first five commenters on this post, get the app for free! So comment! Then get yourself in the kitchen and start cooking!

I was not compensated for this post.

 

 

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