The Crazy Suburban Mom: 2009-06-28

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

On the way home, mon...

The Jamaican Declutter Fest 2009 comes to an end...

My family is on their way home and I really missed them. I learned when they left that I could track flights and I did. The whole way there. I even copied and saved all the different altitudes and air speeds should they want to see how their flight progressed. But they probably don't. That kind of weirdity is all mine.

Since I could text them for free but their texts to me were 50 cents each, communication was mostly one-sided.

This is what I learned:

  • It was hot. Very hot. Every day.
  • My son, who insisted I take the skin off of skinless baloney for the first 15 years of his life, ate pizza without the cheese for the first 12 and probably ate only 20 different foods (11 of which came in Styrofoam to-go containers) for the first 17 years, ate conch fritters and conch soup. Silly me. I was looking for plain, innocuous foods that I could get passed him easily.

He was looking for this.

  • And while they did the carry-on thing the way to Jamaica they had to check their luggage on the way home. See, some of my son's friends went along on this trip. When I go away I buy jewelry, or sandals, or maybe a T-shirt but one of my son's friends bought a machete. And machetes are not considered carry-on.

Go figure.


This blog is not harmful to humans or pets when used as directed

Well, y'all were probably right about that Formula 409 thing.

I shot the company a note via their website telling them I had trouble finding 409 but also that when I blogged about how safe I felt Formula 409 was the comments that followed voiced safety concerns. Their email response was:

Dear Ms. Reinhardt,

Thank you for contacting us about your Formula 409 All Purpose Cleaner. We always appreciate hearing from our consumers.

When used as directed this product in not harmful to people.

Again, thank you for contacting us.

To be honest I was hoping for something rosier. Warmer and fuzzier, I guess.

I wrote back: "Is it harmful to pets than? It was a bit of an odd answer and I was expecting a bit more, frankly. " And got back:

Dear Ms. Reinhardt,

This product in not harmful to pets when it is used according to the labeled directions.

Again, thank you for contacting us.

Is it me or does that come off as terse and oddly brief to you?

Since my original post I bought a bottle, which states:

Precautionary Statements: Hazards to humans and domestic animals.

That sounds nothing like the emails to me. I don't even need to look up the MSDS sheets at this point. Clearly, there is more information to be had. But the lack of it speaks volumes.

So I'm open to new cleaner suggestions.


If you want to leave me some suggestions I will be grateful!

I may go back to using The Clean Team products . I bought a big kit of theirs several years ago years and really like them and if I recall they are food safe. I've run out of the cleaners but still use some of their products all the time.

The tile brush

Super-duper for cleaning tubs and showers.

Feather Duster

The scaper thingy

The best thing ever for scraping schmutz from where my stove meets the counter.

The Apron

Okay, I love my apron. It allows me to carry stuff from room to room and despite what my son says, I do not look like a tool wearing it.

So basically.


Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Rethinking all the turkey I eat...

I know wildlife isn't the first thing people think when they think, New Jersey, so I thought I'd show you that we do have indigenous creatures.

I had to take my car to the service station Monday to check the air conditioning; it being distinctly not cold and all.

That's where I saw the indigenous wildlife.

And no, I don't mean things that congregate in or around these...


Don't mean what's driving the cars either.

Although some of them definitely qualify as wild.


And no, don't mean these gals either ....

...although their show did get pretty Oh. My. God.

On with my story. I checked in and decided to take my camera for a walk before it rained. It had to rain. It's been raining for a month. I heard a noise, turned around and snapped a picture. Peeking over the camera didn't help, I was pretty far away, so I looked at the picture.


Not much help, it was pretty blurry.

This is what I saw when I walked towards the noise.




Just hanging out between the cars waiting for service; a turkey.

I assume the cars were waiting for service.

Not the turkey.


James, do you know there's a turkey on the side of the building?

Oh, that's just Charlie.


So let me introduce you to Charlie.


Now you can say you read a blog about a New Jersey turkey.

And not mean me.


Monday, June 29, 2009

And now for something completely different...

For a long time I considered myself a photographer first, artist second. I certainly never considered myself a painter. Painting was a happy accident; more a side effect of the cataracts than intentional ( My cataract story is here).

Of all the odd things I've posted on this blog I don't think I've posted any of my photography. Certainly not an entire post.

On giving and generosity...

Even after all this time
The sun never says to the earth,
"You owe Me."

Look what happens with
A love like that,
It lights the Whole Sky.



"Forgiveness is the fragrance that the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it. " Mark Twain

Every wall is a door...

“Every wall is a door.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

Walking away....

The hardest thing to do is walk away from a friendship.

The Secret Sits

We dance round in a ring and suppose,
But the Secret sits in the middle and knows.

Robert Frost


Sunday, June 28, 2009

Why does buying toilet paper involve algebra?

The need for all things to be new and improved is an exercise in frustration. Some things are really fine the way they are.

Today I was at the grocery store looking for two things:

Toilet paper
Formula 409 cleaner

You would think it would not be much of a challenge.

I went to the toilet paper aisle and first had to get past the designer wipes. What does that even mean, Designer?

Shaking off the thought of designer tushy wipes; I moved on down the paper goods aisle.

First, there is the ply factor and than do I want 4 rolls that equal 8 rolls, 12 rolls that equal 24 rolls or 18 rolls that equal 38? And what does that all mean when you add the mysterious ply factor into the equation?

All I want is, ya know, toilet paper. I really don't want to put that much thought into to it. I certainly don't want it to involve math.

With the Formula 409? Not a bottle to be found. They did have a gigajillion other cleaners all with natural sounding fragrances combined with coordinating non-naturally occurring day-glo colors.

Orange scented cleaners were the color of oranges grown on the grounds of nuclear power plants... Pine cleaners must have come from pine tress under Chernobyl fallout. And the purple cleaners? They weren't grape so what is the smell of purple?

Why can't I just find plain old formula 409, the cleaner from 1959? Is it not cool enough? Is it not new and improved enough? To be totally fair even 409 has new and improved versions (and even a purple one) but there's something about using a product that's been around that long that makes me think it actually works. And is safe.


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