House Sold

Click to read on Dawn: http://dawn.com/2012/05/06/humour-house-sold/

I sold my house before I moved back to Canada, it was quite an experience and I discovered things I couldn’t imagine about people I have known all my life.

Remember the house I got renovated? I sold it. And I moved. But that is another story. Unless you have gone mad and decided to move half way across the world — and having gone through this extremely painful process myself I would not advocate it for anyone — never sell your house. First of all you should only sell your house, if it has a leaky roof, cracked floors, and crumbling walls. Or if a close relative has passed away and left you a mansion on Tipu Sultan road.

Selling your house is an uncomfortable process; it will keep you up at nights and give you plenty of indigestion. You will have all kinds of people invading your privacy requesting tours of your house at odd hours of the day. And they will want to know why you chose to paint your daughter’s room two shades of pink and why the kitchen counters are black. They will shake their heads unbelievingly at the ‘extravagant’ price, then bug you after you sell the house to someone else, why you didn’t inform them first, because they had their hearts set on it.

A house that you have lived in for a long time becomes part of you; it hosts your celebrations and shelters your rainy days. It watches your children grow and becomes their first friend; its walls hold up everything from little pink and blue bunny rabbit cut-outs to posters of sleek cars or rock stars with bad hair-dos. It provides a personal little haven known as the bedroom, where your moody teenagers retreat to when the world doesn’t treat them right. It listens patiently, never judging, never offering unwanted advice to the angry adolescent but pacifies them with the knowledge, that here, they are accepted. It sadly hears your fights and joyfully watches reconciliations. It guards every secret obsessively.

I miss my house. And it took me months to wind everything up. Twenty years of possessions are hard to get rid of. And you won’t believe the junk I had. Actually, you probably would because every Pakistani woman has an incredible imagination when it comes to recycling. Closets that were full of spare dupattas of cast away suits, clothes piled up for repairs or distribution to various destinations, shoes that had been worn out and forgotten about, hair clips, scrunchies and makeup kits that were never used. Stashes of candy, hidden from the children. I could almost hear my house moan sadly as I continued to deprive it of all its belongings.

The kitchen cupboards were stripped of countless empty ice-cream containers, unused dishes, utensils and plastic bags. Oh how we women adore our plastic bags! Of course my maid had a field day, and I felt a bit guilty at her bliss on receiving such trivial little titbits. I know my house will miss her too. The way she helped me scrub and dust out each and every corner was admirable, getting our house ready for the new owners as we reminisced and even shed some tears together.

Sniff. Enough! Never regret a decision, it wastes too much time. Just learn from it. Which gets me to the real point. When we put our house up for sale, a wise old person told us it is ethical to ask your neighbours first if they are interested. We did, fortunately everyone already had their own house. Neighbours are one thing. Relatives are another.

Never sell your house to a relative. Especially if you are the type of person with a lot of ‘lihaaz’ (read: doormat). That is where they get you, at your lihaaz. Because of lihaaz you will sell your house at a rock bottom price and then listen quietly as your relatives whine incessantly about how broke they are. They will also want to get it renovated some more before they move in. Never mind the fact that you still live there. Lihaaz aap ko mar day ga.

After the house is sold, your relatives will come often with the pretext of helping you wind up the house. They are actually coming to make sure you don’t damage any of the walls while moving out large and heavy furniture. Speaking of large and heavy furniture, don’t bother trying to sell it or give it to any of your best friends. Your relatives will do you a big favour by insisting that you leave everything and they will take care of it for you. Later they will complain to all and sundry that you left your broken down junk for them. That ‘junk’ that will later adorn their drawing rooms.

And then of course there is the large collection of electronic gadgets that you will leave for them. And they will have the gall to phone you up to tell you the stuff you left for them (that they had asked for, by the way) doesn’t work, and it is costing them a lot to get it fixed. So you offer to give them their money back… oops, you gave it to them for free. So what to do now?

Don’t let it come to this, heed my advice and never sell your house. Especially not to relatives.

150x200_top_hilarious_mommy_blogs

Vote for me!

Advertisements

Resident Evil: Messy Kids

1779124_784178318278653_839994470_n

Friday is the last day of the week the house stays clean. As the kids come home from school, my neat and clean abode slowly turns into Boxing Day aftermath.  Yes my kids have issues. They are suffering from “our mom is too good to us syndrome”. Yeah I need to work on that.

By Saturday there are dirty dishes in the sink. On the dining table. And on the coffee table, under beds, near the computer table and yes even in the bathroom. Unwashed clothes decorate floors in bedrooms and outside the clothes hamper, the litter box needs to be emptied and toys need to be put away. The walls are screaming their discontent at being adorned with what seems to be yesterday night’s spaghetti dinner. And this is the start of my weekend. Sound familiar? Well at least I’m not alone.

I am the mom, I do not get tired, I am never sleepy, I do not need to relax. My only aspirations in life are to cook for, feed, clean, wash, and pamper anything I have given birth to or married. I realize that: “you look tired today”  is not my friend sympathizing with me. That is her  saying “Woman you need a face lift, hair dye and a week at the spa.” The only thing I can afford from these options is the hair dye, which I am not gonna do anyways. Honestly I rather be grey than have to scrub that dye from the tub every time I wash my hair. Being perfectly coiffed is so over rated. I am just going to embrace my inner Carol. I mean just look at her!

Carol2

I have some suggestions on how we should deal with these problems:

1. Pack up all their stuff in black garbage bags and inform them it is being donated to the Salvation Army.
2. Take it out to the front yard and put up a garage sale sign.
3. Collect it all in the backyard, surround it with a circle of rocks, light it up and roast marshmallows over it.
4. Bury it in the compost heap.
5. Take pictures of it, especially close-ups of underwear and then post it to their Facebook walls.
6. Invite their friends over for a get together and not let them know about it.
7. Pack our own bags, get in the car and drive to South America. Take all their electronic goods to pawn off along the way.
I am thinking either # 3 or #7. Let me know which worked out best for you!

Kids in the car

Every time we go out with all the kids we swear it will be our last trip. We remind our snarling, fighting brood as they cause pandemonium. I write this post ( on my treasured S3) in the car as their drama unfolds in a very familiar way…

Middle child: Mom! She pulled my hair and choked me!
Twin 2 : she’s lying!
Middle child: No I am not!
Twin 1: Eww who farted?
Twin 2: It was you!
Teen 1: SHUT UP!
Me: STOP IT ALL OF YOU
Middle child: Stop pushing!
Twin 2:  then look out your own window!
Middle child: That is my window!
Twin 2: Idiot! Stay on your own side!
Twin 1: Someone keeps farting! (lots of laughs)
Twin 1 : You aren’t allowed to look at my window(in a very whiny voice)
Teen 1: SHUT UP!
Teen 2 : YOU SHUT UP!
Twin 2 : (whispering)You’re ugly!
Middle child : No you’re ugly!
Desi guy (husband):We are never taking you guys anywhere again! (laughs and giggles from the back seats)
Twin 2 : I need water I’m thirsty.
Me : No you had water before we left…
Twin 2 : But I’m thirsty again!
Me: Its only been ten minutes.
Twin 2 : Mommy!
Me : No then you have to go pee again and we aren’t stopping every fifteen minutes for that.
Twin 2 : I’m hungry.
Teen 1 : OMG SHUT UP! Mom why do we always have to bring them?
Twin 2: :Stop saying that you are so mean!
Me : What are you looking at?
Desi guy : Nothing
Me : Yes you are!
Desi guy: Its nothing
Me (snatching his cell) : Stop it and keep your eyes on the road!
Middle child : Hey motorcycle dude!
Me (hissing) : Stop that!
Twin 1 : But its a motorcycle dude! (Lots of giggles)
Me : The window is open, motorcycle dude can here you!
More giggling.
Teen 1 : SHUT UP!
Desi guy : THAT IS IT WE ARE TURNING BACK!
Silence for  thirty seconds.
Twin 1 : Who farted?
Middle child : Ewww!
Twin 2 : I’m thirsty!
Twin 1 : Move over and stop looking out my window!
Teen 1 : SHUT UP! ( loud Indy music coming from earphones)
Teen 2 : oh my god you shut up and stop screaming shut up!

image

Acting like angels as soon as they realize I am taking a picture.
Desi guy :  what are you doing? Put the phone away you made me miss my turn!
Me : SERIOUSLY?
Desi guy :  yes. STOP TAKING PICTURES!
Drive in silence for two minutes, then stop at our destination.
Desi guy : Ok only teen 1 and 2 are getting off with mom. You three stay in the car with me.
Middle child : Awwww why?
Me : You dont need uniforms
Twin 1: But we wanted to play hide and seek and this is the best store for that!
Me : Are you kidding me?
Twin 2 : Puleeeeeeze?
Teen 1 : SHUT UP!
Teen 2 : oh my god you shut up, you’re louder than all three of them!
Teen 1 : nobody shut up!
Five minutes later
Me : Come on we cant buy uniforms today.
Desi guy : What happened?
Me :There is a one hour wait at least.
Desi guy : You’re exaggerating
Me : Nope.They made a waiting area. And it is full..must be at least fifty people sitting there. You wanna wait in the car with these three?
Desi guy : Nope. Let’s go
Twin 1 : Awww!
Twin 2 : Yay!
Middle child : Move over!
Twin 2 : I’m thirsty!
Teen 1 : SHUT UP!
Desi guy : THAT IS IT WE ARE NEVER TAKING YOU GUYS ANYWHERE AGAIN!
One minute silence.
Twin 1 : Who farted?
Desi guy : Damn it I missed the exit again
Twin 1 : Dont lick me!
Me : Stop licking your sisters.
Middle child : I’m not licking her. I just  licked my hand.
Twin1 : Yeah and then she touched us with it!
Me : Where are you going?
Desi guy : What? Oh damn it missed the turn again.
Me : I think you should teach me to drive now…
Twin 1 : who farted?
Oh my god I need a vacation.

Just Enjoy It

MjAxMy1hNTU0ZmVhZmU4MDk1NGNj

I am not going to give myself airs thinking I have been chosen by a Higher Power to show staggering patience and unbelievable tenacity so that I can complete some deep and meaningful task. I think God throws stuff at ( a select group of chosen) people like me to keep us entertained. Like having a desi guy as a husband (desi: of Indian sub-continent origin) or five wildlings for children. A germophobic health freak best-friend. Having a split personality: Angry Woman, Procrastination Woman, Can’t Stop Laughing Woman, Desi Mom, White Dad( let’s have a barbecue).

I found it very entertaining, for example, when desi guy ran a red light while cruising down the street at a leisurely speed:

Me: “You know you just ran a red light right?”

Desi Guy (slightly panicked): “Are you serious?”

Prodigal Son (enjoying this highly): “Yes, oh my God. What were you thinking we could have been killed.”

The roads had been absolutely empty. No excuse though.

Desi Guy: “Why didn’t you stop me?”

Me: “You are the one driving.”

Desi Guy: “This is your fault. You distracted me.”

With my incredible beauty? With my mesmerizing siren song? Had I been picking my nose? Whatever. It was my fault.

Speaking of noses and picking and stuff, teenager 1 wanted me to pierce her nose.

Me: “I don’t know, it’ll hurt.”

Teenager 1: “I can take it. You got it done that way when you were my age.”

Me: “By a village woman who had pierced the noses of half the country. It’ll be faster with a gun.”

Teenager 1: “omg just do it for me please.”

Me: “Look at this needle. See how big it is. This is going to hurt.”

Teenager: “Just do it.”

Me: “I can’t.”

Teenager: “Just do it.”

Me: “I can’t.”

Teenager 1: “Please!”

Me: “I can’t. My hands are all shaky.”

Teenager 1: “Oh my god mom just do…ow. You did it.”

Me: “yup.”

Teenager 1: “That’s it?”

Me: “yup.”

Next morning:

Teenager 1: “Mom. Mom. MOM!”

Me (packing lunches for school) “What?”

Teenager 1: “Can you pierce my nose again? The thread came out.”

Which wall shall I bang the frontal lobe of my cerebral hemisphere against?

My relatively new best friend is a doctor. She does not practice. Thank God. She is relatively new because although I have known her for three years, the first two I kept losing her phone number. I ran into her several times at Wal-Mart and school, each time I took her phone number and each time effectively managed to have it deleted via the kids. It was God’s way of telling me don’t bother, it is not meant to be. Then sometime last year I met her outside the school and dragged her to my house for tea. The tea I make is absolutely narcotic, people can never get enough and they keep coming back for more. I am a loud-mouthed-pajama wearing-female Dr. Lecter who doesn’t serve liver. Or kidney. Just tea, and I drag people I am acquainted with back to my house for that tea. I want to see what would happen.

Anyhoo…my relatively new best doctor friend has some peculiarities. She won’t let me shop at Food Basics because one of the cashiers there has a fungal infection which she diagnosed after observing it for half a nanosecond one day while shopping there. We can’t shop at the dollar store now either. Or Target. Or Suzy Shier or Winners. You know risk of frequent fatal fungal infections.

I wonder if her liver would go well with a spot of tea? Either way, I will just enjoy it.

2010-Madhatter

(pics from Google)

Weekly Photo Challenge: Family

Family is….

Photos-0411

 

The little family that my family raised. And…

 

055

 

A family watching a family. And…

DSC03406

A family of capybaras snapped by my family.

163

Twin 1’s rendition of her family.

 

What to do on a Snow Day

Image

I am sick today. And I sit here with a box of tissues, a bottle of hydrasense and a clove of burning garlic shoved in my aching ear. I am too sick to do anything but have random thoughts and watch boring shows on TV. Daytime television is bleh. There is more snow coming. “When the snows fall and the white winds blow…” the bus ain’t coming cause school is closed.

For Moms:

1. Make a huge amount of hot chocolate. Pour in a bottle of Benadryl. Give them as much as they like, they’ll all be out before you know it.

2. Send them outside and offer a ‘ten’ for every igloo they make. They’ll stay out of your hair the whole day. Then give them a dime for every igloo. What?

3. Send them over to Grandma’s. That is what parents are for. (Be sure to move to Florida after they get married and have their own kids.)

Image

For Kids:

1. Make your own hot chocolate.

2. Offer to make breakfast and let Mom go back to sleep.

3. Clean the house while Mom sleeps.

4. Take care of younger brothers and sisters while Mom sleeps.

5. Make chicken sandwiches for lunch, feed everyone, then clean up the kitchen while Mom sleeps.

6. Make Mom the best cup of coffee/tea ever and serve it to her on a tray with a flower in bed.

7. If you can’t manage all the above, take all your brothers and sisters and go over to Grandma’s. Stay there.

Any more ideas for the next snow day?

(All pics courtesy of moi taken on Feb 8)

Ode to husbands

polar bear 084

Oh dear husband so loyal and true,
How do you manage to make me so blue?
Could it be all those rolled up, smelly socks
That is putting this extra gray in my locks?
Why do you so kindly offer to cook?
Then be cruel and not let me read my book?
I hand you every ingredient, chop everything up,
Then have to wash every pot, plate and cup.
You have to look after the kids too you know,
It’s not like I brought them in my trousseau.
Just how they drive me nuts, you have not an inkling,
As you sit in front of the computer screen blinking.
I think it is time you cleaned up your act,
Time to grow up as a matter of fact!
Your dirty laundry lying behind the bathroom door,
I ain’t gonna pick that up no more!
While I lug the groceries you let the door slam in my face,
I think I can arrange for your neck to be in a brace.
So become a gentleman or watch your back,
Before you find yourself tied to the train tracks.

(sketch courtesy of me-because every picture I googled was copyrighted :0)

Parents Just Don’t Understand

Sometimes after I have finished yelling at my kids, I wonder what it would be like to be in their place. Then my imagination goes a little wild and takes on different personalities, like a desi teenage boy. Here is an article I wrote for Dawn when my imagination was him.

Yo! You have crazy parents dude? Man I’m telling you they don’t understand anything. It’s like after 30 their brains stop working. And if your parents are Desi, man you have the worst type of parents ever! Desi parents? They speak desi, they think desi, they act desi, they spend desi. You can’t help but think “Yo old man why are we here? You should have kept us all in Desi Land!” And they tell you they came to give you better opportunities than they had. But man they can only think with desi brains and all those opportunities go out the backdoor. All my white friends, they don’t have it half bad. They’re lucky man. At least their parents speak the same language. Don’t believe me?

I had a pain in my tooth, had it for days man. Kept telling my mom I’ve got to see a dentist, you know what she tells me?

“Aye Allah! Who knows what that man will do to you putr! Here put this in you mouth.” Then she shoved a broken clove into my mouth and shut it so hard I almost bit my tongue off.

“This tastes like ‘bleep’ Ma!” And I tried to spit it out but she grabbed my face in her hands. Dude you won’t believe the hand muscles desi women develop from kneading all that dough!

She made me stuff cloves in my tooth for one month. Then the dentist told me I’d have to get a root canal. My old man wasn’t too happy about that. Not the pain I’d go through. The cost man! Dude, desi parents have desi wallets. Literally. My old man bought 42 wallets from his last visit to Desi Land. He got them off a thela for Rs45 each. That’s less than 45 cents. You can’t imagine his joy when he tells everyone he meets how much he saved on those wallets. You can’t imagine mine either. Anyways he tells the dentist,

“Just pull the tooth out! He doesn’t need that one much, he has plenty of others.”

“Mr Chaudry we need to eliminate the infection otherwise…” says the dentist.

“Otherwise what? No one will be willing to give their daughter’s hand in marriage to him?” says the old man.

That night he tried to pull my tooth out himself with a pair of pliers. Lucky for me I’m the only son and my mom beat him off with her rolling pin. Those desi wallets are like black holes, nothing ever seems to come out of them dude. Asking desi parents for money is like asking the cute white girl in your class to a high school dance with you. The answer is always ‘NO!’ Desi parents wait till Boxing Day to buy you stuff. Yeah they don’t give you the money. They take you shopping dude.

“Oh putr, look at this! 70 per cent off! And in your size too!” says Ma.

“Ma it’s got a picture of Justin Bieber on the front, everyone will think I’m ‘bleepin’ gay.”

“Tauba tauba! All that ‘bleep’ was not enough for you? Now this ‘bleepin’ stuff!” She’s least concerned about the Chinese couple who have covered their kids’ ears. “What is wrong with being happy? And he is such a decent boy, look at that innocent smile.”

“Ma! It’s something a kid would wear.” I try to drag her away.

“Are you not my kid?” The old man asks loudly and everyone in the shop turns to look questioningly at Ma.

“Man! Stop being so loud Dad, come on…” I try to drag them both out.

“No, this matter must be settled!” He glares at me then at Ma. “Is he not my kid?” By now there is a crowd wondering at my legitimacy. I pick up the Justin Bieber T-shirt.

“Alright! I love Justin Bieber and I want to buy his ‘bleepin’ T-shirt because I’m happy ok?” I scream and everyone gasps.

The seven dollar shirt hangs in my closet. Justin Bieber smiles at me every time I open the door to get the Rs800 Leisure Club shirt my cousin managed to send me with the old man.

Thanks

Thanks Fortyteen Candles for nominating my blog for the One Lovely Blog Award.

No that is not the Award, this is:

And you don’t just get an award and then do nothing but be happy about it. There are some things you have to do.

1. Give credit to the person who nominated you. Which I have done.

2. Describe 7 things about yourself. Which I have not done. Yet.

3. Nominate 15 other bloggers. Which I suppose I should do. Even though it is Friday afternoon and I am feeling very lazy.

7 Things About Me

1. I need breakfast first thing in the morning. Other wise this happens…

2. I have an obsessive-compulsive disorder for putting things in the proper place. None of my children seem to have inherited this. They insist on inheriting all my husband’s genes. They will be sorry when they one day grow up and find their houses are on “Hoarders: Buried Alive”. And I will be watching and laughing in my spotless living room.

3. After I had kids I started using Mommy language. This consists of standard sentences such as :”who ate all the ice cream?” “who didn’t flush the toilet?” “who put the cat in the freezer?” as well as “no I don’t have money” “no I have not cooked anything else for dinner besides the four course meal on the table” “no you can’t use my lipstick”. And most commonly, ” I can’t wait till you have kids of your own!”

“who took my tweezers damn it?!”

4. I forget to close the lid on the toilet at night even after reading “Good Habits my Cats Have Taught Me” by http://misanthropology101.wordpress.com/.

And my cat falls in without fail.

5. I got my eyebrows threaded and no longer look that much like Russel Brand. But my daughter still calls me Russel. 

6. That is not a picture of my eyebrow. Mine are better.

7. I don’t really care whether Robert Pattinson moved out or not. He is not really Edward Cullen people, get a life!

15 Blogs I Nominate:

1. Story Addict

2. Communicating.Across.Boundaries

3. smileinstyle

4. clotildajamcracker

5. the urge to wander

6. yummyfoodmadeeasy

7. Ashley Jillian

8. Words From The Woods

9. Writerlious

10. heylookawriterfellow

11. Paddy’s kitchen

12. Nazar Blue

13. Life Behind the Pages

14. Life As We Show It

15. Fabulous 50’s

(All pics are from Google Images)