This week . . .  was not my best week.  It was one of those weeks with way too many things on the to-do list for one person, in part due to my inability to set boundaries for myself, and in part because of my knack for procrastinating.  I am terribly overcommitted right now in several areas, which is it’s own post, but I did finally get some resolution on a few things that were raising my stress level from moderate to DEFCON 5.

We have been living with a half-finished kitchen for almost a month now, since IKEA sent us the wrong cabinet fronts.  And without the cabinet fronts, we can’t install the drawers or the countertop, so half of the kitchen is a construction zone that IKEA had no desire to solve.  I got so fed up with their lack of response (and mysterious inability to receive my emailed pictures) that I posted the pictures online, along with the customer service responses I was getting.  I might have also posted a few screenshots of the emails they claimed they never received. Then I posted the website on their facebook page.  Several times.  Surprisingly, the issue was resolved the following day, and the cabinets that look like the ones I ordered are on their way.  Some people might call this “cyber-bullying”.  I like to call it “social media accountability”.

In other news, I attempted to get a better handle on my email inbox, which has been the bane of my existence for several months now (see above re: lack of boundaries/procrastination issues).  I decided that maybe I wouldn’t be several months behind in responding to people if only I had better access on my phone.  So I followed the advice of several tech-savvy friends who said I should forward my emails to the gmail interface.  Which I tried to do, leading to a black-hole 48 hours where emails where appearing and disappearing and shuffling and rearranging  . . . let me just say this: 1) I wish I had never heard of POP3 forwarding, 2) I’m still not sure what it is, 3) if you auto-forward your emails to one account and then have that account already set to auto-forward to the other account, what you think might happen WILL HAPPEN.  You remember those HP ads where someone takes a picture of a picture and then it’s a smaller picture and a smaller picture and it never ends?  Yeah.  THAT.  But I think I finally figured it out (along with that annoying gmail threading thing) and I set aside my morning today for whittling down my unanswered emails.  It started with over 6,000.  Tonight I am down to 4,268.  Progress.

(And lest you think all these emails are because I am terribly popular – have of them are undeleted facebook notifications, blog comments, junk mail, or spammed PR pitches.)

I washed my car yesterday.  All I can say about that is, my car was more neglected and full of crap than my email inbox. 

We were also able to come to some resolution about India’s mysterious symptoms.  For the better part of a week she was walking around with an exaggerated limp, and having pee accidents for the first time in over a year.  Of course I immediately consulted with a pediatrician Google and determined the probable cause to be either leukemia, muscular dystrophy, partial paralysis, or hip dysplasia.  I spent several days mourning the loss of her dancing career and wondering if she would still be able to have children. Until we finally took her to an actual healthcare professional, who took one look at her gait and said, “oh, that’s a constipation walk.”  So, several days and some laxative-infused smoothies later, and the issue seems to be resolved.  My tendency to catastrophize?  Still strongly in place.

We caught up to the current episode of Mad Men.  In a season marked by my seeming inability to follow-through, this felt like a big accomplishment.


And then, the birthday.  Kembe and India turn four in two weeks.  Which I realized like this:

Mark: How old do they have to be to be in that free church program?
Me: Four.  But just tell them they’re four in two weeks.
Mark: Their birthday is in two weeks?

I don’t know how this crept up on me, especially since India has been talking about her birthday party and the ever-changing theme and guest list since the day after her last birthday.  I knew that she wanted something related to High School Musical/princesses/ponies/ballet/Hannah Montana/Strawberry Shortcake.  And I knew that Kembe wanted something related to none of the above.  I am thrilled to say that Bears, Buddies and Toys has come to my rescue, because they do simultaneous Knight and Princess parties.  At their location. 

(Key phrase here: not at my house.)

So.  A few problems solved, for now.  Just a couple thousand emails to go, and a reminder to get a head-start in planning Jafta’s birthday.  Speaking of, Jafta has informed me that he would like his birthday to be just like Medieval Times, only in our backyard.  And for his present, he would like a spaceship that he can ride around in.

So that oughta be easy.