Monday, January 24, 2005

Sick of it all

Being snowed in for a couple of days in nearly two feet of snow made me take stock this weekend. I looked around, at what I had; at my kids, and all they have. And I realized something -- they have just too much crap. And, so sadly, I can't TiVo it away....

The problem is, we are coming off a week of severe stomach virus. Couple that with 21 inches of snow, and you have a "Shining" moment waiting to happen. We were trapped with the virus, then snow, then in a wreckage of our own making. Movie voiceover guy: "It was the stuff that HELL was made of...."

Cara was crazy sick for three days. She couldn't do anything but watch TV. Couldn't eat, couldn't move. Couldn't change her socks or brush her hair, either. She was in heaven. This meant no picking up after herself. But, when you consider that she was knocked out sick, this should not have been an issue. Surrre....

She was hit with the virus last Tuesday. I came home from a meeting Wednesday evening sick as a dog. When I came out of my stupor on Friday, I realized the house looked like something seen only in tornado aftermath footage.

Cut to the weekend. Ryan gets sick 5 a.m. Saturday morning. But he can't accept that. He has to keep pulling out toys, digging for gloves and hats in a plea for snow action--even though he'd get a raging fever whenever the Motrin wore off.

By Sunday, I'd had it with the TV being on. Cara was no longer sick and after a couple of hours in the snow, wanted to return to the comforting glow of "Even Stevens" and "Lizzie McGuire." On the other hand, Ryan, still sick, refused to lay down and take his illness like a man--"SpongeBob's not on."

So I told them we'd play with Play-Doh and the ol' Lite Brite. But first, I'd have to find the little plastic light pieces. This led to a sobering reminder that we have an Easy Bake oven that was used once, more Hasbro and Milton Bradley games than we WANT to play with (because "no fair" is shouted more often than "I connected four!"), enough Hot Wheels and Match Box cars to circle our town twice. About 49,000 crayons and markers. A jillion coloring books, activity books, and just plain BOOKS. Yet, not enough Lite Brite lights (Mike thinks they're out in the garage--see previous blogs about Mike's organizing efforts).

So, I made an agreement with the big guy (actually, it was just a stipulation of marriage)--the next person to give Cara or Ryan ANYthing before their birthdays this spring has to put $100 into savings. We need to punish ourselves. It's the only way to stop the insanity. You can't keep up with the stuff if it just keeps coming in.

Which led me to the realization that all housekeeping should be as easy as TiVo housekeeping. With TiVo, when the recorded shows pile up, you scroll through, decide if you want to keep or delete them, press a button--badabing, badaboom, done. I feel like "Bewitched." No tapes or DVDs to organize. No piles of stuff to move around.

I need TiVo cleaning for every room in my house. It could pop up a list of stuff in Cara's room: I could scroll through and click what to keep, what to delete, what to put in the closet, a drawer. Click, click, done.

Why, oh, why is this not available?? TiVo, WHY DO YOU TAUNT ME?!?

--Catherine Schetting Salfino

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