A Recalcitrant Wife and Mother Tells All

A new way to use my crazy for good at school!

Ever since the year I was an overachieving (see: pill-popping) Kindergarten room mom, I tend to steer clear of volunteering at school. I’ve just found that my kids do better on their own without me being there to, you know, ask questions like “So is the Principal Pal thing rigged, or what? Who do I have to throw some Benjamins at to get one of those frickin’ magnets on my car?”

But you know me, I like to help. I’m just much better behind the scenes: pulling weeds in the school’s butterfly garden, or sending in canned goods, or selling my soul to the devil in exchange for the last existing yellow poly folder with pockets AND prongs in the western hemisphere.

One year I found that the best way I could help was by sharpening all of our teacher’s classroom pencils every weekend. (Those poor teachers have THE WORST pencil sharpeners in their classrooms!) My oldest son Vince would bring home a baggie full of about 100 dull pencils every Friday and I would zone out and reflect on my deep thoughts over the sound of my professional grade X-ACTO whirring away. Very therapeutic. I like my pencils like I like my men: tall, sharp, and with a big, firm, pink… eraser on the end. Ew, what did you think I was going to say?

This year will now forever be remembered as the year my child was finally rewarded for my hoarding tendencies. 

That’s right, people. The stars have aligned and Mini-Me’s math teacher sent out an email this week asking parents to save twist-on bottle caps for a future project.

Uh, like these?

It finally pays to be a hoarder by The Bearded Iris


My sweet child came home all aglow yesterday because apparently I was the only parent to reply to that teacher’s email.

See? We all have our own unique gifts and ways that we can serve others. Mine just so happen to involve repetitive tasks and the DSM-IV. Whatevs. You say PTA, I say PTSD. God bless us, every one.  

So that’s what’s new around here.

But elsewhere…

I overshare on the Internet

Last week I was invited to write this for HLNtv.com about moms who “overshare” on the Internet. And apparently it struck a nerve with some people. Granted, I’m not licking my own face repeatedly or slapping my nekkid butt cheeks all up on a gyrating Footlocker employee’s man meat, but still—this article garnered the second ugliest comment I’ve ever received in the five years I’ve been doing this blogging thing. (Which you cannot read because it was not published. As a general rule, the only assholes I pay any attention to whatsoever are my own and my children’s.)

I’m also very excited to be making my debut at Bonbon Break this week to share some of the behind the scenes pinnacles and pitfalls of the whole self-publishing experience. Please check it out!

I hope your Labor Day weekend is everything you need for it to be, times two, with a side of Come Back Sauce, and a free kitten.

Yours truly,



  1. Famous SpokesGoat Pricilla

    Humans are most assuredly entitled to their opinions but there is no reason to be obnoxious. I am sure it was by someone using an avatar rather than their real name like me? I am a proud SpokesGoat and always express my opinmaaas

    • The Bearded Iris

      Agreed. Anyone who calls me names, particularly from behind an anonymous avatar doesn’t get invited into my house. The end. No biggie though. Hey, how about my bag of bottle caps?! Impressive, no? XO

  2. Emma

    Anon meanies are the lowest. No?

    I’ve got toilet paper rolls? Anyone? Anyone?

    • The Bearded Iris

      I’ll be there in 5 minutes! Let’s DO THIS.

  3. Jenn @ Something Clever 2.0

    I NEED to know what’s up with the caps. Both why you had them, and what they’re going to be used for.

  4. Laurie

    I also have a big bag o’ caps. I collected them for the art teacher at school. By the time my collection was large enough to send, she was done with the project. I’m certainly not going to create an art project for my kids, and I can’t throw them away. I guess I’m just waiting for the stars to align for me!

  5. Andrea

    I am with you on helping behind the scenes and might have fought you for the pencil-sharpening gig. I usually only help out at my kids’ schools if there is minimal interaction with children.

  6. Jennifer

    So… why were you saving twist on bottle caps?

    • The Bearded Iris

      Just in case. (That’s the crazy part…no specific reason.)

  7. katie metzroth

    If I live to be 100, I will never stop being surprised by people. What is the matter with them? Would they type that if their mother was looking at the screen? But who knows, maybe they didn’t have a mom to care about them and teach them how to laugh at themselves and be happy and sharpen pencils for their teachers. I think it’s great that you keep it real!!! Carry on.

  8. Amy

    I just caught up on your posts and read this, the day after I volunteered to be the room parent for my kindergartener. I have a feeling I should focus on cap collecting for future years.

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