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Red Georgia Clay (Sung to the tune of Toby Keith’s Red Solo Cup)

Red Georgia claypants 1

You tick me offpants 2

Let’s have a standoff

Over the laundry…Pants, close up

Ah, yes. Red Georgia clay: the bane of my existence during baseball season. Take a look at these pictures, folks. This is just one week’s worth of baseball pants. How is a woman with other children, other responsibilities, other laundry, supposed to keep up?

productsAll the moms in the stands compare notes. Have you tried this? Have you tried that? Well, here’s another picture proving I’ve tried just about everything. In truth, the season is over, however I still have three pairs of pants soaking in Iron Out in my laundry room sink.

Iron Out, in case you’ve never experienced the joy of this powder, makes your house smell like a sewer. I kid you not. The ladies on the bleachers swear by this stuff, but either I’m not using it right or my son gets dirtier than their kids, because it still doesn’t get all the stains out and that’s after days of soaking! Days!Fels-Naptha

My all time favorite product, guaranteed to rid white clothes of stains is the inanely named Fels-Naptha. Huh? What marketing genius came up with that catchy title? Although Fels-Naptha does work, while scrubbing stains with this soap bar, I feel a kinship with my ancestors of generations past who scrubbed clothes over washboards. My biceps have never looked better. I can hear the announcer at the fictitious World’s Fittest Mom competition: And now, fresh from the laundry circuit, here’s contestant number three, stay-at-home mom, Christy Hayes…

Does anyone have any suggestions for those of us lucky enough to live in the South who face the joys of red Georgia clay on a daily basis? Please help. Inquiring minds want to know.

My Parenting Fun Continues…

My fourteen-year-old son recently texted me while on a school trip with his classmates and asked me to stop texting him. He’d been gone for two days and I’d texted him a handful of times asking those probing questions that parents ask like, “Where are you now?” When I asked him why I should stop texting him, he answered that I was annoying him.

When he got home, his father and I took his phone away and I told him he’d get it back when he learned to treat me with respect. Oh, and I was done doing all the annoying things I do for him every day.

He now wakes up with an alarm instead of me rubbing his back. He makes his own breakfast (I do still slip a Power Bar into his book bag or else the kid would starve). I’ve stopped annoying him by doing his laundry. We had a lesson with both the washer and dryer that included many eye rolls and frustrated huffs of impatience. He even asked when he was getting his phone back and when he could stop doing laundry (his first load was still in the wash).

Needless to say, he still doesn’t have his phone and he’s still doing his laundry.

Never would I have treated my parents with the kind of disrespect that he treats me. My husband would never have been so bold with his parents, and he’s pretty darn bold. Somewhere along the line, our son has lost complete respect for us. My friends say it’s because he’s a teenager and he’ll grow out of it. Unfortunately for him, I’m not patient enough to wait until he grows out of it. As a matter of fact, he can do his laundry from now until he leaves for college if his attitude doesn’t improve.

The thing I don’t understand is that I don’t expect him to lavish me with praise for preparing his food, doing his laundry, and being at his beck and call 24/7. I never have. I’m simply trying to raise a self-sufficient, happy citizen who will contribute to society. If he does a few years of laundry along the way, his future wife can thank me with grandchildren I intend to spoil rotten and then return to his parents. Should he be scared that I’m already plotting revenge? Yes, he absolutely should.

So as Thanksgiving comes to an end and the kids head back to school with visions of Christmas break on their minds, I’m wondering what the rest of you who have raised teenagers recommend. Should I lighten up because he’s a teenager or give my wayward son more chores?

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