Now, I was pretty sure that the teacher’s instructions were not “OK, children! Today we are going to do a plaster penis project!” I am quite certain she did not pick up tips on how to make it from Martha Stewart Living magazine. In fact, when I asked my son what it was, he said it was a fish.
But, well, there it was: a plaster penis on my lovely maple kitchen table.
Our babysitter didn’t seem to have noticed we had a plaster penis on the table. She was seated right next to it, calmly clipping coupons.
The plaster penis has been on our kitchen table for weeks now, because Max has become quite attached to it. I am not having any freakouts about what this might say about my son. It’s more like, THIS PLASTER PENIS SITTING ON MY KITCHEN TABLE IS THE LAST FREAKING STRAW. I WANT MY HOUSE BACK.
I like having a neat, uncluttered, nice-looking home that does not have any plaster penises visible. We moved in when I was seven months pregnant with Max and while I didn’t go overboard decorating, our 1920s colonial has its charms. We splurged on a few pieces from Ethan Allen. We got some nice carpets. We scattered about art pieces we’d picked up during our honeymoon in Bali.
Then came my kids, and all the stuff that fills your house once you have kids, and all the stuff their stuff spawns. My kids’ toys, games, craft projects, musical instruments, stuffed animals, plaster penises, you name it have invaded every nook and cranny. I have no space to call my own, unless you count the linen closet that has miraculously been spared (shhh, nobody tell my kids).
Yes, of course, the awesome-ness of my kids is worth the clutter. But is it so wrong to long for a house that looked a little more Pottery Barn catalog and a little less bless this mess? I don’t think so. And if you disagree, I have a lovely plaster penis to loan you.
I’m hosting book club at our house in a few weeks, and I hope Max will let me put the plaster penis away by then because I’m not sure how I’d explain it. Meanwhile, I grabbed my camera to document the space invasion for posterity. I’m betting that once the kids are older, I might miss their clutter. But right now, I’d really like my house back.
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Image: Flicker/Paul A Hernandez
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