Friday, July 21, 2017

7 Quick Takes about an Excessive Stash, Dish Brushes That Don't Look Quite Right, and Helpful Advice for Parents of Kids Named Alexa

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?


I've  known for a while that my gift bag hoarding was getting out of hand. Every single gift bag from every birthday party for the last 5 years, I've ferreted away in the basement. Sure we use them, but the drawer where I keep them kept getting fuller and fuller.

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?  {posted @ Unremarkable Files}
It doesn't show because of the angle of the picture, but each of these stacks was like 5 inches high.

I don't even know this many people, letalone give that many gifts. And don't even get me started on the tissue paper I'd been holding on to.


If you ask my 1-year-old a question, he says "no." Even if he doesn't understand the question. Even if what he really means is "yes." He literally just yells "NO!" whenever he detects your voice rising at the end of a sentence.

This week at the library, I approached the circulation desk with the toddler in one arm and a bag of books in the other. "Can I put you down for a minute?" I asked him.

Predictably, he said "No!" but didn't seem to mind when I put him down, anyway.

"Must be his favorite word," the librarian chuckled. She checked out my books and asked me, "Do you want a printout of your account status?"

"NO!" yelled the 1-year-old from the floor.


The garden beds next to our house are a total disaster. I need to do some serious work: mulching, buying new plants, that kind of thing. But until I know exactly what I want, I hesitate to put a lot of work (okay, any work) into maintaining the garden beds the way they are.

I don't have it all figured out yet, but one thing I know for sure is that I want our two peony bushes GONE.

Aside from the fact that I don't really like the look or smell of peonies to begin with, they also attract ants like nobody's business. As if we weren't losing the battle against weather-and-insect damage to our house thoroughly enough on our own.

Plus, our particular two bushes have really big white flowers. So big the bushes can't support their weight. They don't even bloom pretty, they just droop on the ground and decay while all the petals fall off. It looks like a swan exploded on our sidewalk.

Long story short, the kids enjoyed helping me take out the bushes and the 9-year-old especially liked unearthing the ball of roots at the core.

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?  {posted @ Unremarkable Files}

The kids called it "the warlock's hairy heart" which I guess is a Harry Potter thing, but it seemed appropriate to me.


It's been sort of a weird transition coming back from vacation. There we were, all together 24/7 for 2 weeks, and then we came home and Phillip had to work late for several nights and the oldest left for a week of church youth camp.

I guess I'm used to Phillip traveling so that's nothing too out of the ordinary, but having one kid gone is pretty bizarre.

I'm really looking forward to my daughter coming home this afternoon. And not just because I've been doing her chores for a week and it kind of sucks.


We went to a kids' magic show at the library. There was a lot of audience participation in the show, and lots of clapping and laughing throughout. The 1-year-old decided he liked the idea of this and randomly burst out laughing at non-funny moments. He didn't seem to mind that he was the only one.

He sat spellbound for the first 10 minutes of the show, but then he noticed a newborn in a car carrier behind us. He crawled under a table to see her, stood up and hit his head, and then practically dove in there with her because hello, who doesn't love babies?

Then he noticed the wheelchair ramp and all bets were off. He had the best time running up and down it until he tripped and cut his lip with his tooth.

It actually makes me tired just reading this. How can one tiny person house that much energy?


I bought a new dish brush at the store and everyone is giving me a hard time about it.

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?  {posted @ Unremarkable Files}
(Full disclosure: I posted this picture for the sole purpose of showing off the sink I just cleaned for the first time since 2015.)

It all started when my 5-year-old saw it and asked, "Is that for the toilet?"

"No," I said. "It's for the dishes."

"Oh. Well, are you excited to use your new toilet bowl brush on the dishes?"

I should've saved the tag, which clearly stated 'DISH BRUSH' right on the front. Everyone keeps insisting that I brought home a toilet bowl brush to scrub our plates.


Something I've always wondered when I see the Amazon Echo commercials is, "What if your kid is named Alexa?" It's super-cool technology, but I personally know two people with daughters named Alexa and it seems to me like that could get confusing.

Well, Amazon's Q&A forum cleared that question right up for me.

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?  {posted @ Unremarkable Files}

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?  {posted @ Unremarkable Files}

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?  {posted @ Unremarkable Files}

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?  {posted @ Unremarkable Files}

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?  {posted @ Unremarkable Files}

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?  {posted @ Unremarkable Files}

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Rachel said...

I was laughing at the kitchen table over the dish brush. I had to try and explain to my extremely inquisitive three year old what I was laughing about. That was ten minutes ago and she still asking why you washed your dishes with a toilet brush....

Lyndsay said...

So I'm not the only one who dreads doing their chores while they are gone. How did we ever manage without kids old enough to help clean?

That is one fancy dish brush. It is shame already knowing how it will look in about two months. :(

P.S. toddlers ARE exhausting.

Julie @ Just the Joy's said...

Bahaha ha those comments on the echo dot are hilarious. But honestly, I've wondered the same thing! I never knew peony plants attracted ants like that! I always thought the flower was so pretty though! Flower beds and schrubs are so much work. I've been working on trimming shrubs for a week (because kids) and I swear in our next house I want all self maintaining landscaping! Lol

Jenny Evans said...

She's in good company, mine is still asking me the same thing.

Jenny Evans said...

No kidding, I went out to the garage to sort the recycling the other day (which is a daily chore that rotates among the 4 oldest kids in our house) and realized that I've NEVER DONE IT BEFORE. In the 7 years we've lived here. They're really good workers.

Jenny Evans said...

The homeowner before us planted a ton of perennials, and good thing too because I am totally failing at weeding and maintaining. I would never manage to go buy new flowers every year and plant them! On the other hand, I wish there were a little fewer garden beds around the house due to my black thumb...