Extreme measures.

Posted in Eat & Drink

The Shop Tart has been fighting a losing battle since the day her first son was born. Or has she? Every week, she gets a friendly scolding from her housekeeper. Once again, the boys haven’t picked up their room so she can clean. This, as you may imagine, enrages the Shop Tart. Some children actually have to dust and vacuum their own rooms. The Shop Tart’s sons, while generally very nice and respectful boys, have been known to complain bitterly, with no small amount of drama, about the fact that they have to pick up their own cr*p. Once a week. So someone else can clean their room. This makes their mother feel like a failure at, you know, decent human rearing. She worries about their future romantic prospects. Who on earth would want to make a life with someone so entitled? Then she puts it in perspective. They aren’t the first children to bring the noise about something so wrong. And they won’t be the last. And most of them turn out okay, so please don’t discount her darling sons.

Anyhow, last Monday, she couldn’t take it any more. She went up to check out their room in anticipation of the housekeeper’s arrival. Let it also be said that one of Mr. Shop Tart’s only duties is to supervise the straightening of the room. Supervise, not just ask if they did it and believe their answer. Once again, it wasn’t done. Calmly, the Shop Tart removed every item of clothing from their drawers and the closet shelves. (She left the hanging clothes, which were relatively well organized.) She piled them all in the middle of the floor. This was the half way point.

This happened.

She found socks belonging to the children who claimed they had no socks. Perfectly good khakis, property of the children who claimed to have nothing to wear to church. And t-shirts. So many t-shirts. She sent Mr. Shop Tart a picture and warned him of the task ahead. She let the housekeeper know she was off the hook. And she realized she didn’t want to be home for the fallout. She definitely didn’t want to cook for the offenders. She remembered a gift certificate for the Hunter Gatherer, burning a hole in her pocket, and texted her siblings, her father, and his wife, and invited them to dinner. Hooray! They enjoyed a leisurely Monday night meal, starting with warm crab dip. (As always, the Shop Tart asked for crudite on the side, hoping to get a few extra veggies in.)

Hunter Gatherer.

(This is on the list as one of the first things the Shop Tart wants to eat when detox week is over. Delicious!) The white wine was flowing — a pretty decent sauvignon blanc — and the Shop Tart began to relax. She enjoyed the heck out of her Greek salad, adding deliciously seasoned shrimp to make it a meal.

Hunter Gatherer.

One of her sisters had the goat cheese salad with shrimp.

Hunter Gatherer.

Can we talk about those little goat cheese toast thingies? They are such a treat. Last night, while the Shop Tart enjoyed her detox friendly cucumber and avocado chilled soup, her family ate Greek lentil soup from Rosewood Market and goat cheese crostini, made with Heather’s Artisan ciabbata bread and Split Creek Farms tomato basil goat cheese, also from Rosewood. The Shop Tart did not indulge, but has been told it was a fine meal. (She did try the soup, rationalizing that it couldn’t be that far off her list. It is ridiculously good, lemony and delicious. And chock full of healthy lentils and greens. Even the Tank liked it. New favorite! The Shop Tart will be checking the deli menu regularly for this one.)

Dinner from Rosewood Market.

But back to the Hunter Gatherer. (Because we always go back to the Hunter Gatherer. Because it’s the best!) The Shop Tart’s other sister did something very, very smart. The Hunter Gatherer’s gyro is legendary. The lamb version is delicious, but the vegetarian, portabello mushroom version is just as good. The Shop Tart’s sis ordered a mixture of the two, so she could enjoy the meaty goodness of the lamb, and the tender, savory mushroom. Genius.

Hunter Gatherer.

Her father and his lovely wife split a steak. At first, the Shop Tart thought thought they were being polite, because she was paying. She reminded them that she had a gift certificate, so it was no big deal. They reminded her that the steak was huge!

Hunter Gatherer.

After dinner, they split a dessert, because the Shop Tart was hoping to delay her return home as long as possible.

Hunter Gatherer.

It was good.

Hunter Gatherer.

And the room? It took a week, but they did it. And everyone is much happier, especially the Shop Tart. Have you ever acted like a crazy person in the face of your house mate’s or family members’ mess? Do you even think what the Shop Tart did was crazy? Do the ends justify the means? Don’t you think that crab dip looks amazing? What makes you bring the noise?

In today’s post…

  • Hunter Gatherer, 900 Main Street, 803-748-0540
  • Rosewood Market, 2803 Rosewood Drive, 803-765-1083

Happy Shopping and don’t forget to tell them you read it on the Shop Tart!

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6 comments on “Extreme measures.
  1. chimmy says:

    well played, Shop Tart, well played. repeat every week if necessary.

  2. Mary Dell says:

    Please! My momma more than once put all our belongings in big black plastic trash bigs and threw them out into the yard before she picked us up from school. If they weren’t all put away properly that night she took them to LICS.

    And that doesn’t even include when I was a teenager and they took my bedroom door off the hinges because I slammed it too many times. :)

  3. I adore y’all. Thanks for the support! :-D

  4. Lynn Murray says:

    I have dumped my children’s “drawers” so many times and have actually go as far as putting the “stuff” in trash bags and threatened the trash — amazing how that generates some movement in the pick up your room tirade!!! You keep it up — after they clean up that mess for a few times — they do better at keeping it clean.

  5. Melissainsc says:

    Very nicely done. I’ve been considering charging a fee for my cleaning services if things aren’t done by a certain deadline. I’d totally get paid because, heh, deductions from allowances or account transfers. Personally, I think adding actual cleaning duties to the boys’ routine would help them appreciate their current privilege. For what it is worth, your boys are great kids. Always polite and interesting to talk to when I see them at church. Eh, housework is a hard sell no matter what.

  6. Paige says:

    Well done. I’m a survivor of those years… yes, it will pass. I gave my 3 the option of picking up before the housekeeper came (quite a privilege in my book) or staying home on Sat to pick up AND clean their rooms (vacuum, dust, change beds… whatever the housekeeper would have done) before they did anything fun.
    Hard to apply consistently especially if there was only one offender and you couldn’t leave them home alone while transporting others) but seemed a logical consequence to me.

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Anne Postic

The Shop Tart

Local arbiter of all that is fresh, fashionable and flavorful in Columbia, the Shop Tart has been blogging about shopping, eating and having a great time since 2008.

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