Thursday, December 06, 2007

Not a Planner, But He Makes Good French Toast

One of my husband's more exasperating qualities is the way he hands out information. Whenver anything's going on, he either a) doesn't get all the necessary info, or b) doesn't give it to me. For example, he'll tell me his parents are talking about coming for a visit on Saturday, but he won't know what time and he thinks "maybe we're going to go eat lunch or something together." I don't find out until Friday night that they are coming the next day at two o'clock and not only are we going out to eat, they have a very specific place in mind and I need a nice-looking outfit to wear and they'll probably want to come back here afterwards so I need to make a dessert and stock the fridge with beer. It has taken YEARS of screaming and pleading and explaining and temper tantrums on my part to get him to correct this habit even a tiny bit. At least now he'll tell me up-front that he doesn't have any more information, and occasionally he'll remember to ask for it before he hangs up the phone with the person he has just made plans with.

I'll admit it, I am a control freak and I like to have as much information as possible beforehand. I like to be able to plan for every contingency. Some people would find it paranoid and weird that I would pick out three (sometimes more) possible outfits to wear to lunch with my in-laws, so that I have choices based on what the weather is like tomorrow, possible shoes I might feel like wearing, and whether or not I think his mom will wear a blue dress and do I want to run the risk that we might be dressed even a little bit alike. I am more inclined to call this facet of my personality the "they drive to weird-ass out-of-the-way places and I don't want to be scrunched into their Saturn for four hours of drive time wearing too-tight pants and a sweater that is hotter than a blacktop in July, and ok so sue me but I would be weirded out if my MIL and I both showed up in flowy blue dresses" factor. I will make said dessert and buy said beer for consumption post-meal at our house, but I will fret that maybe blueberry pie won't go with whatever we'll be eating, and perhaps I should buy both light and dark beer because you never know what people will be in the mood for.

My husband's refusal/inability to adhere to the Defense of Our Marriage Freedom of Information Act (i.e. Weetzie will freak the hell out when she does not know every tiny detail beforehand so if you are making plans you'd better get your facts straight, pal, and God help you if you don't tell her everything you know immediately) has forced me to be a little more Zen with my planning. Oh, sure, he's improved (he usually remembers to nail down time, date, and place now), but you are talking to a woman who will not wear red underwear beneath a purple skirt because those two colors don't match and it would bother me all day. I am so Zen now that he can say "my parents are coming on Saturday" and I will just shrug, pick out two possible outfits, and make an apple crisp. That's how Zen I am.

My Zen-master qualities will be sorely tested with this move. Er, possible move, since last night he said that he hadn't actually told them he full-on accepted the offer, and he thought maybe he'd go down there first and check it out. I spent the day combing websites and puzzling over neighborhood maps for a place we may or may not move. I haven't even gotten around to trying to price moving trucks or figuring out how we're going to live for months and months with no furniture because we got rid of it all and, horrifically enough, there is no Ikea in North Carolina.

I suppose I can't blame him for his caution. We went in blind and excited for our California move, and that did not turn out nearly as great as we thought it would. And a job is nice, but if it's going to be another terrible job in a place we can't really afford to live and would hate...well, that's why we left California.

I am pretty proud of myself, though, for not picking up something and beating him with it when I asked about things like the job salary, benefits, etc. and he said he didn't know. I just took a deep breath and told myself that I can't blame him for not researching the job all that well, since we thought it was a long shot and weren't sure how interested we were in another big move. It would just be nice to know these things, so I can work out a possible budget and maybe find a pediatrician or know if I'm going to have to auction a kidney on Ebay every time Piper gets an ear infection or someone keys our car.*

He's supposed to go down there for an orientation before the end of the month (two days right before the school lets out for Xmas break), and I think his plan is go down there solo and check it out - the school, the neighborhoods, the town in general. We want a reasonably nice neighborhood (our budget never allows for one that's super-trendy or super-safe) where we can survive with one car. I am going cross-eyed looking at apartment listings and trying to get familiar with a city I've never been to. When we moved to California, it was sheer dumb luck that got us an apartment three blocks from his school, which just happened to be on the safer end of town. We picked that complex because it was cheap and allowed pets. Somehow I don't think Fate will be that kind twice, and I don't want to end up livng next to a sewage treatment plant (does Charlotte have a DoWiSeTrePla?) or in a place where living with only one car is out of the question.

One thing that got me totally excited about this (possible, probable) move was when Max pulled up the weather forecasts for there...and then for here. It's supposed to be high-60's in Charlotte this weekend. Here? They're prediciting mid-30's and snow. I did not like the cold when I lived in Michigan before, and two years of wearing flip-flops 11.5 months of the year did not make me happy to come back to a place where I have to dress my wriggly, cranky child in 4 layers of clothing just to take her outside.

*Which happens a lot, actually. Twice in the first year we owned it - once in CA, and once two days after we arrived back in Michigan.

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