Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Do you know what stresses me out?

There may be nothing more ridiculous than taking the time to meticulously clean the cat litter area before meeting the potential cat nanny. Or stressing about not having enough time to clean the water fountain and clip the cats' claws before tomorrow. Not that I want to impress her, I just don't want her to think I mistreat my feline babies. (I try to clean the litter every other day, but I get distracted by my human child, okay?)

I'm sure cat nannies are always a little, um, eccentric, so I am looking forward to meeting this one. When she asked me how many times I wanted her to visit, I said maybe three times? Every other day that we're away? She said, oh no, she'll come every day, what she meant was how many times per day I wanted her to visit. Sadly, the poor cats will get more attention the week we're gone than they do when we are here.

I'll admit that the cat nanny stress is completely self-imposed, but do you know what stress I really don't need? I do not need my neighbour to ask if I mind if his 4 1/2 or 5 year old son joins Will and I for a walk around the block. Not when my 3 year old is carefully (and slowly) pushing her doll stroller while wearing flip flops (and a sparkly purple dress, white sunglasses and a pink rain hat) and the neighbour's little boy is zooming ahead on his bicycle with training wheels.

The boy was quite considerate. He did wait at every corner for Will and I to begin to catch up, but in the final stretch he pedalled ahead, and I only assume he made it home because I saw his bike on the lawn when we finally made it back. It was only around the block, but I did not like feeling responsible for this other person's child, and I felt terrible when he got so far ahead. And then I was stressed out when I did not go to his house to check on him. So please, I would rather wander the neighbourhood with only my daughter in my care.

And of course, we can't forget the intermittent stressor known as our crazy next door neighbour. We have decided to go ahead and replace our front porch and deck this summer, and we met with a landscape design company last week to discuss their proposal. During this meeting we learned that our neighbour had accosted them quite vigorously when they were in our yard taking some measurements. She told them they could not leave debris on her driveway like the workers who replaced our windows, and warned them against trespassing on her property. (Then she asked them to level out her backyard, so I guess they became friendly?)

Then earlier this week I had to do some damage control after she sent me a semi-hysterical email about us using her driveway as a "right of way" (which we are allowed to do). So when I rounded the corner of our street, trying to catch up with the neighbour's son on his bike, Will trailing behind with her stroller, and I saw my husband in conference with this neighbour on her driveway . . . Is it any wonder that I forgot about the giant black dog across the street and got the bejeezus scared out of me when he jumped against the fence barking like the world was on fire?

Just a bit stressful. That's all I'm saying.

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