and ventured into the girls' room yesterday.
It is just a disaster, largely because they HAVE TOO MUCH STUFF. And few places to store it.
I know for a fact that Skittles, when asked to put away clean laundry, just stuffs it into the little cabinet she uses as an armoire (it is, in fact, an old TV cabinet from Home Depot or IKEA or something). I remind her regularly, "You DON'T want me to look in there," because that results in lots of cursing and tears. Largely mine.
But yesterday I knew I could not delay any longer.
Not only because they deserve a cleaner, more organized place for their clothes. And not just because they have absolutely no idea what they own. But because I saw a notice for a clothing drive.
And the deadline is the end of September.
I received this:
Seems ideal to me. There is one of these dry cleaner shops inside a grocery store down the street. And while in Moscow one can just put unwanted items next to the trash dumpsters and they will quickly find good homes, this seemed a more reliable way of getting decent used clothes and shoes directly to a good cause with very little effort on my part.
My company, Contrast Cleaners, is running through to the 30th September its annual charity event "Coats for Kids" where we collect and distribute clothes and shoes to orphanages in the Moscow region.
In the past 2 years we have collected on average around 1500 items per year and are looking for your generosity to improve on that this year, an especially difficult one for charities. So have a rummage in your wardrobes and chests of drawers for any unwanted clothes, in the age range from 1 to 18 years, and in reasonable condition.
You can donate the clothes or shoes by bringing them to any of our collection points or express dry cleaners where we will clean the clothes and carry out minor repairs at our cost before arranging the distribution to children charities.
You can view a list of our locations on our web site, www.contrast-cleaners.ru where you will also find more detail and links to the charities we have supported in the past. Just click on About the Company and then Charities.
Thank you in advance for your help.
So I culled.
Five bags of kid clothes and one bag of shoes. And this is without even opening the BIG armoire in the girls' room. I'll just have to get to that next weekend.
The girls hate this process because I make them try things on, and it is so time consuming. I only spent two hours (one per kid) here.
The Spouse offered to help me carry them over to the shop later today. Malcolm Hill asked me to kindly spread the word, so consider yourself informed.
The carrot I dangled in front of the girls as a reward was Lunch Out. I had hoped to get one final day outside at Scandinavia's Summer Terrace (much cheaper than inside and a quiet oasis right off Tverskaya). But when we arrived, there was not a stick of furniture outside. Starlite Diner is not a bad second choice, and just up the street. So that was the Booby Prize.
After lunch, Baboo and I went to pick up (still more) newly arrived 6e textbooks. Another $100 worth (I swear I have already spent $200 on her books). And her math workbook and an English textbook have not yet arrived.
The Spouse and Skittles went to have a shoe of his repaired.
Then they stopped for a pastry and a chat.
About how the adults' personal life is none of her damn business, thank you very much.
See Friday night it happened again.
The Scene: Kids asleep in their room which is as geographically far from our room as is possible in our little place. They face the street (as do we) so the constant roar of the traffic covers up, on a normal night, the sounds of the television in the living room (which is between our bedrooms). That never disturbs her.
Our door was closed.
And yet. And yet . . .
The kid is somehow mysteriously tied to my nerve endings. I'm assuming it's mine. I should ask The Spouse to have what we here Chez Beet euphemistically call "A Moment to Himself" and see if the Money Shot wakes her from a sound sleep and causes her to wander the hall between her room and the toilet, weeping and retching.
So back in the bakery, he asked her why she thought it was any of her business. Her eyes welled up, and she started to get all weepy. And he said, "How's that pain au chocolate? Better than the one you had at the other place?"
And suddenly all was fine. They just . . . moved on.
Although now she's probably going to transfer the association to pain au chocolate and have to spend years in expensive regression therapy as an adult trying to figure out why French pastries simultaneously attract and repulse her. Or worse.
If you don't normally read the comments, go to the last entry and read those. The Loyal Beet-niks supplied some hilarious solutions.
I'm just glad I'm not the only one.
And now, for your amusement, some cat pictures:
Crooky has these funny back legs when she lies down.
We call this one "Cat-o-flage."
Tonight I'm going to a little soiree. Or salon. I'm not sure exactly what to call it. The Spouse will babysit.
The program promises a poetry reading and some music and a scene from a Harold Pinter play and "hilarious comic interludes." I have never met any of these people (another in my series of Moscow Virtual Friends), so if I don't make it home by midnight, I was last seen at Pivo Vodi, 26/1 Sretenka ul.
Good or bad, it could be good blog material.