Friday, January 15, 2010

Mama Said There'd Be Days Like This

I was thinking about my mom today. I was remembering how mad she would get at my sisters and me when we were little. I never could understand why she made such a big deal out of things. I mean, seriously, we were just little girls doing little girl stuff. It wasn’t like we were biting the heads off of bats and knocking down old ladies on the street. That came much later in life. Although, there was that one incident with the new furniture.

My mother was very frugal. My dad was just the opposite. While my mother sat at the kitchen table for hours clipping coupons and planning the route to the seven stores she would hit to save a dollar, my dad was out buying the latest and greatest gadgets and gizmos the world had to offer. My mom wanted to drive her car into the ground while my dad was off to London on the Concorde. They were quite the pair, those two.

When my father finally talked my mother into new living room furniture, it was an event in our home. The green scrolled velvet high backed chairs with matching Mediterranean couch and fancy hi fi in the cabinet that matched the end tables which matched the coffee table which matched…. Well, you get the picture. Then there were the new lamps to complete the ambiance of the place. There was the giant round ball looking thing on one side of the room but on the other side, are you ready….on the other side was the three foot naked angel lamp. Yeah, you read it right.

This amazing creation of a living room was really more like a museum to us. We were not allowed in there. It was for company. Adult company. Not us. “Do you girls understand?!?!?!?!” Now think about that. You have a room in your house with all new stuff in it including a three foot naked angel lamp and then you say stay out. What do you think is going to happen the first time you leave your little darlings home alone while their dad is on the Concorde and their mom is hitting seven stores to save a buck?

So we decided to build a fort in the museum living room that fateful day. First, we got rope from the garage. My sister Kelly tied one end of the rope to the giant round ball looking thing on one side of the room while I tied the other end of the rope to the three foot naked angel lamp. Once we got the rope just the right height, we ran to our bedroom and pulled the blankets off our beds. Running back to the museum living room giggling with excitement, we each grabbed an end of the first blanket and threw it over the rope. Imagine our surprise when the giant round ball looking thing on one side of the room and the three foot naked angel lamp on the other side of the room flew off their matching Mediterranean tables and came crashing down onto the coordinating green shag rug.

By the time our mother arrived home with her value crammed grocery bags, the blankets were back on the beds, the rope was back in the garage and the giant round ball looking thing on one side of the room and the three foot naked angel lamp on the other side of the room were back on their matching Mediterranean tables. It was years before she ever noticed the glued back together body parts. That is the very good thing about a room rarely used. It buys you time to live.

What made me think about this story today? As I was putting away the last of the Christmas decorations, something caught my eye in the nativity. Baby Jesus is missing an arm and I am pretty sure his head was not on backwards before Christmas.

Darn kids!


Blasé said...

Jesus will understand, I'm sure

honeypiehorse said...

Sounds like she needed to control her surroundings. Kids make that difficult.

Rae said...

Very funny. Sounds like my grandsons might have been at your place. They broke my nativity setting and glued it back together with resulting similar problem as yours. Guess they thought my old grandma eyes were too weak to notice.

Okie Book Woman said...

That's funny! Great post.

Janean said...

that was the cutest story i've read in quite a while!!!! i could just picture it all.

mmmmm...broken off arm and backwards head seems a TAD suspicious. lol.

Parsley said...

That's just too funny! I think I'd play a trick on the kiddos. Maybe serve them a hot drink in their favorite mug. At the end of the drink they'll see a spider drawn on the bottom of the cup with a sharpie pen. When they ask 'what?' say, it's always been that way. Something like can let your mind run wild.

Sandy said...

Sounds like your mom was making it possible for your dad to a bit irresponsible. She was compensating for him. I wonder how frustrating that was for her?

Though I did enjoy the story about you and your sister. I've never understood families having a room not geared towards the family.

My daughter is grown and gone; and it's been less than 2 years ago I got my first matching dining room I feel like an adult. lol


Mama Zen said...

This is such a great story!

My nativity has been missing Mary for a couple of years!

MindyBB said...

I love it!

Sarah said...

lol! what on earth is that round green looking thing?

Just Be Real said...

Sounds familar. Too funny! Thanks for putting a smile on my face!

Two Shades of Pink said...

hee hee...I grew up in a museum too...but I obeyed the no touch rule. My release to be bad was sneaking out at night and having a beer in the woods. I have sure have changed. Looking back, I probably should have made the wiser choice of choosing between the lesser of two evils. But to my credit, Jesus was always anatomically correct.

Oklahoma Granny said...

Your story brought back such memories. I seriously have got to wonder if our mothers were related somehow.

I've often said my mother's museum living room, with its plastic runner over the carpet, needed to have some of those velvet ropes like you see in real museums. We were good though and never broke anything or else I wouldn't be here to make this comment.

Although both my sisters grew up to be much like Mom, I am the rebel. While I don't allow kids to stand up on the couch or jump on the beds, the furniture is there to be used. Life is too short to live in a museum.

Thanks for the laughs.

Joanna Jenkins said...

HA! "It was years before she ever noticed the glued back together body parts." Mom clearly spent little time in the living room too. You girls were very lucky!

As for baby Jesus-- Wonder how long it will take for one of the kids to fess up to that :-)

Have a great weekend.

Marla said...

Blasé ~ That's my prayer :-)

honeypiehorse ~ You said a mouthful

Rae ~ We may be old but we aren't stupid :-)

Okie Book Woman ~ Why, thank you

Janean ~ Just a tad, ya think? :-)

Deena ~ Letting my mind run wild has never been a problem for me. Well, actually maybe that IS the problem. :-)

Sandy ~ The truth is, both my parents were incredibly responsible people. My dad was just more of a free-spirit than my mom was.

Even though we had the living room museum, we also had a den and a kitchen that saw plenty of action. It was the house everyone wanted to be at because of all the ongoing fun.

Congrats on your matching dining room furniture! lol

Mama Zen ~ I bet "not me" took her.

Mindy ~ Love you!

Sarah ~ I think it was a lamp...or a space ship. Not quite sure anymore.

JBR ~ Thanks for thinking it was worth smiling over

Two Shades ~ Oh my goodness! You made me snort with that last line!

Ok Granny ~ You're the rebel?? Me too!! Shocking, I know

Joanna ~ I'd say the twelfth of never

Nancy C said...

My brother was the king of superglue. There are still things my mother hasn't figured out yet.

Pearl said...


I had friends whose parents had whole rooms devoted to "company", its furniture encased in plastic.

That always blew my mind.


p.s. Nice post!!

Just Playin' said...

Great post! Reminds of the "leg lamp" in The Christmas Story movie. My fave. I am a saver, hubs is a spender...neither of us to the extreme. Weird dynamic in the marriage though. I'm always talking to myself about it. :)

justsomethoughts... said...

"It buys you time to live."

and perfect

Nanny Goats In Panties said...

Ha!! I thought for sure you were also going to tell us that the couch had a plastic cover.

Katherine Jenkins said...

HA! Love your story! Santa Claus is missing his nose on what of my mom's old wooden decorations. My sister and I decided it belonged somewhere else. I love your story.

There's a little gift waiting for you over on my blog. Check it out.


gayle said...

That was so funny!! Now a days people rarly have rooms like that but back then it was very popular to have the room that only company went into!

Marla said...

Nancy ~ I like your brother already!

Pearl ~ I use to think about encasing my boys in plastic to keep them clean.

Just Playin ~ I talk to myself too. I'm the only one that really listens to me I think.

justsomethoughts ~ I am aren't I

NGIP ~ That would have been a lie and I never lie ... except for right now.

Kathy ~ A gift!! No way!! Be right there ...

gayle ~ What do you mean "back then"? Are you implying I am my age? :-)

Auntie Cake said...

Hilarious! I searched high and low for a non-breakable nativity set that didn't look too cheesy. I place everyone where I think they should be, and they always end up in a circle around baby Jesus. I love it!

Marla said...

Kate ~ Ah, yes, the infamous Baby Jesus circle. I know it well.

Lily Robinson said...

I can soooo relate to this story. Though we had no 'keep out' room with naked lamps, we did our share when home alone! Your lamp story reminds me of A Christmas Story's infamous leg lamp award!