I vaguely remember when my momma learned the word minutia (pronounced mi noo sha, sorry, I don’t know how to make those little upside down e thingies). It has to do with small trivial matters. I don’t remember the exact time, but I remember her using the word over and over again for weeks. It’s one of those words that seem kind of pretentious, but that’s weird since the word itself is about unpretentious trivial things in life. However, it’s fun to say and it makes all of those trivial little monster chores seem more important somehow.
As a matter of fact that’s what this post is about. For the past two weeks my life has been totally consumed with minutia. I mean it’s been a whirlwind of minutia, so much so that I almost had a panic attack over it the other day. That’s one of the dangers of being a stay at home, home schooling mom. It sounds like a boring job, but there are so many details to attend to that the word boring never gets a chanced to even be vocalized.
Really, I tend to dig these holes myself and then jump in with eyes closed and breathing paused. When I first married 2nd man and we were candidating at churches, they’d always ask me, “Do you sing or play the piano?” To which I’d reply, “Well, no, but I do have other talents.” I’ve often felt silly about that since my only other talents are that I can navigate myself around a strange city unusually well (which has helped on many youth trips so far I might add.) And, I can over extend myself faster than you can say…well…minutia.
Anyway, I began this little whirlwind a couple of weeks ago when I realized that I had been stowing away junk in our garage all winter in hopes of having a garage sale sometime. It seemed like a logical task to take on since the past month has been a spending frenzy for our household. Our girls’ bedroom furniture kept breaking. I finally had it when I caught them simply reaching into the broken drawer front of their dresser to get underwear out of a scrunched mess that had been shoved into the designated drawer and kept falling out onto the floor. Thus we bought them new furniture. Then came the broken finger of my little soccer goalie and the various trips to the doctors that ensued due to the location of the fracture near a growth plate. Did you know that putting a splint on a broken finger is considered a surgery worth over $800.00!! Of course there was also the one-month of free shipping for the home school supplies I will need next year. Last year I was miffed after paying nearly $100.00 in shipping alone because none of the home school displays or conventions are anywhere near where we live. So I felt pressured to buy now. So…. that’s what led to the great idea of a garage sale.
Garage sales really are never convenient, but I looked at our calendar and realized that last weekend was the only weekend I’d have to put this little ditty on until possibly next fall. You see, in the youth pastors home summer is not a break time. We will have two camps to attend, a 3-week fireworks stand to run, a trip to Chicago with a few students and an end of summer 3 day youth rally in Oklahoma City. So, the pressure was on to get this thing done and generate a little cash. Didn’t matter that it was the week of our church revival.
Don’t get me wrong I love revival. I really do enjoy getting to go to church each night of the week, hearing the word preached and fellowshipping with our church family. However, as all moms know, revivals can sink your whole schedule. Dinners must be ready early, children must be cleaned daily (Yes, I admit it, I flub on this one sometimes). 2nd man’s shirts must be ironed and I have the great task of making it all look effortless…ahem cough cough. Anyway, something must give on these kinds of weeks and mine had to be my house. I fell behind on laundry, vacuuming, dusting and somehow I managed to unscientifically make papers reproduce themselves right there on the dining room table. I’d turn around for two minutes and a new pile would appear. Problem was, I didn’t have time to call the Discovery Channel over this phenomenon, I was too busy looking effortless.
I was thankful when 2nd man took Thursday off to help me get the garage sale in order. On Friday morning I was all ready to go and everything was set up without a hitch, except I hadn’t watched the weather. Oh the sun was out and the temperature mild, but I had picked the windiest day of the year to hold a garage sale! I did nothing but chase items down the block all day long. My kids joined in too. We’d take turns getting to go inside the house for a small reprieve. I’m thinking of sending bills to all of the neighbors who may have items in their yards still. Imagine my horror when one young mother with two little ones asked if her daughter could use our bathroom. Oh the embarrassment as she walked in and I, with my nervous laugh, made excuses for the way my house looked. We’d gotten the call that the new furniture would arrive right as the garage sale ended on Saturday. So my girl’s stuff was in boxes lining my hallway. There were stray colorful garage sale sticker dots on every thing that stood still in the house and, I’m not sure, but I think her poor daughter was exposed to all sorts of varying dirty laundry strung all over my bathroom. It was one of those times when you wonder, why doesn’t anyone just pop in when my house is clean? They only seem to do it when things are a wreck. I’d be much more prone towards this hospitality stuff it they would time themselves around my cleaning schedule.
After a very tiring day, 2nd man took us all out to dinner with some of the proceeds of the day. I was trying to keep my face from planting into the dinner plate at the restaurant, but the exhaustion hit my kids differently. They were wound up like little hurricanes. After supper they asked if we could stop for ice cream. Are you kidding?! 2nd man and I just looked at each other. I had the passing thought of just handing around cups full of Benadryl, but of course I wouldn’t do that. Let’s just say bedtime couldn’t come soon enough for me.
The next day was fast and furious as well. The wind died down, but the schedule didn’t. Garage sale, furniture delivery, soccer game and making dinner for friends who just moved, were just some of the items on the minutia list. Top it all off with the “Saturday, getting ready for Sunday” duties. I hardly need to mention the Sunday schedule. Anyone in ministry knows it is the best and busiest day of the week on any normal week. Add to that we had a GAP (Games and Pizza) night that night with the teens.
When I finally sat down at the computer Monday morning to do some bills and other minutia, I was literally shaking. The money, cleaning and planning was piled so high I didn’t know where to start. Praise the Lord for his patience and understanding, a double praise for him extending some of that understanding to my family. The minutia is still mountainous, but I’m hacking away at it little by little. Funny how such trivial things can grow so big in our minds. Well, I’m going to abruptly end here now, because the minutia monster calls and I must feed it. Hope you all have a great day!