Girls Write Out
Thursday, May 29, 2008

Details, Details...
(I hated the texture on the wall, so I retextured, painted and added different molding.)

Sometimes, I wish I wasn't the kind of person who noticed the details. I went to my friend's house the other day, and her husband had painted the living room a warm peach/brown hue and it looked so good with their fireplace -- I ran right into the room and started fawning. His wife said she didn't even notice. Or care. She doesn't notice things like that. But she is freaky about her diet.

There are people who see a handbag as something to put their stuff in; a car is something to get them from point A to point B; shoes just need to be comfortable; their surroundings warm & safe. Honestly, I wish I was one of those people. I could tell any car by its headlights when I was twelve years' old. And it's not about image; I couldn't care less about having a Porsche or a Mercedes or a status car.

I want really soft T shirts (Rebecca Beeson), jeans that fit right (Joe's), a car that has a seat warmer and a sunroof for light (lots in my case, I have a Nissan Quest). I really look like a slob most days, so it's not about appearance either. I'm just picky. Like OCD picky about surroundings. I am that guy on "Flipping Out" with comfort. I will search forever to get the right shade of yellow (Benjamin Moore's Weston Flax) or red (Benjamin Moore's Confederate Red), because it makes me feel a certain way. My mom just moved into our old house and she said, "I can't believe how great these colors make you feel!" I felt a redemption of sorts. My mom is a beige-wall kind of person. (Behr's Brown Teepee is a great one, if you are too!)

All this was fine when I had money, but now I have to be picky and poor, which means a lot of do-it-yourself!

And just to keep me humble, God gave me a daughter, who though she has great clothes and shoes, she is determined to leave here every day not matching. It's my thorn...

One thing I don't notice at ALL is weight. My college roommate went from a size 16 to a 7 before I noticed. So what are you too picky about? A perfectionist about? What won't God let you be a perfectionist about?
posted at 10:29 AM  
  Comments (35)
Delicious Delicious
At 11:31 AM, Blogger Valerie said...

I am anal about the things that don't matter one whit.
For instance: All the towels and washcloths have to be facing the same direction in the linen closet (The fold has to be facing left.)

The glasses can't just be put in the glasses cupboard. No. They have to be arranged by type and size, etc.

See? Stuff that doesn't matter. I guess it's my inner MONK. :)

(My clothes match, though!)

At 11:51 AM, Blogger Kayla said...

Spelling and grammar errors and typos make me extremely tense. It doesn't help that I live in WV and everyone around here says "ain't". Even in my college classes people will say it. *shudder*

I don't notice certain things, like if your floor is clean or if your room matches nicely, at first. But when I notice, I NOTICE and then I can't stop staring. Funny thing is, my curtains match nothing in my room because they were hand me downs and curtains aren't a priority.

My books have to be sorted on the shelf by genre, but my shoes are kind of a mess. It's so weird how certain things matter and others...just don't.

At 12:00 PM, Blogger Kristin said...

Wow, you see, we all have our area where we're anal. So fascinating!!

At 12:48 PM, Blogger Andrea said...

My ketchup. It has to be Heinz. Can't stand the other stuff.

And a clean bathroom and kitchen. I can't stand the thought of a yucky bathroom to get myself clean in. Or a kitchen to prepare the food Im going to put in my mouth! They both give me the heebie jeebies.

I hear you on the spelling and grammar thing as well. Typos jump out at me on a page. Sentences like "she seen that yesterday" are like fingers on a chalkboard to me.

I LOVE Monk. Sometimes I think he has it right! :)

At 12:50 PM, Blogger Ane Mulligan said...

I'm definitely a color person! Funny thing is, my husband is an artist, but when it comes to decorating a house, white is fine with him. YUCK!

I used to wallpaper every room back in the 70s. I moved the furniture around every other week. My poor husband would come home at night and never know where he'd find things. It led to some pretty funny sights.

But for the last 10 years, I lived with most of the walls in my house white. I don't have the time or energy to do what I used to.

But I finally had enough and painted my bedroom the most gorgeous gold (think dark spicy mustard). It has sand in the paint which adds texture and color depth. Just don't fling your arm up during the night or you'll scrape your knuckles. *g*

I papered one wall with a stripe and we added crown moulding all around the room with those corner thingies.

It came out so great, he's finally thinking about painting the living room!

I won't hold my breath. We bought the paint 6 months ago. It's still in the garage.


At 1:16 PM, Blogger Tricia said...

I used to have so very many things.


The Lord, via my children, is relieving me of each Monkish thing in my life one painful thing at a time.

I still have one left. Paper/wrappers/trash on the floor. This is not rocket science people!

It's a small house, you're not 10 steps from a trash can at any given time! PUT IT IN THE TRASH!

Since our home is also our school, there is a lot of school related trash. The paper bits from a spiral notebooks are the BAIN of my existence and don't get me started on pencil shavings!

(Perhaps I have more Monk left in me than I thought.)

PS, if you're one of those spelling people, I can olny say sorry!

There are a lot of us poor spellers out there!

Poor spellers of the world, untie!

At 1:34 PM, Blogger Lynette Sowell said...

Hmmmm...I can't think of things I really obsess about, which means I must be blind to them. Well, there are some brands that just won't do so I'll pay more for what I want --Palmolive, for example, and not the watered-down cheapo dollar detergent. But there are other areas where I will be just plain cheap (mayo, for example).

We did have to have Ralph Lauren paint in the living room for the walls, because that was the only shade of oatmeal that didn't make our living room furniture look greenish. :)

At 1:37 PM, Blogger Kristin said...

Ane, I wonder if white is like a clean palette for your husband and that relaxes him?? Hmm.

Oh my gosh, Tricia, you thought of a new one for me, that DRIVES me NUTS!! It's the height of disrespect, isn't it?

I don't eat ketchup, but I do buy Heinz for my family, so you can rest easy. LOL

And isn't that funny about paint? The slightest addition causes another hue. KB

At 1:37 PM, Blogger Julie Carobini said...

Kristin, you really don't notice weight? I thought we all did...ha

And thank you Valerie for showing me that I too have an obsession with towels, although for me, the fold HAS to be facing out.

Never realized I felt that way until now...argh.

At 1:48 PM, Blogger Annie said...

ok, so for me its 3 things:

1. my DVD's: they have to be arranged on the shelves alphabetically, so i can find what i want when i want to watch it! I have over 130 DVD's and when i was in college I became the Blockbuster room- for free! so i had to keep a list so i knew who had what so i could get it back!

2. my fiction books: they have to be alphabetical. ALWAYS! and if a book is missing, i MUST know where it went. I'm currently missing my Liz Curtis Higgs set of her Jacob-Leah-Rachel books and I have NO IDEA where they've gone. It makes me sad.

3. I'm with you on the clean bathroom/kitchen. But I hate doing dishes. I need to find a man who loves doing dishes! LOL

4. Ok, i know i said 3, but here's #4: I'm a Director of Youth Ministry and the thing that I am most anal about in ministry is CELL PHONEs and IPODS! My youth have started using them to text either each other or others during bible study or confirmation or just our regular youth days! It drives me nuts! It's so disrespectful to their peers and to God, let alone to me and their other teachers! I recently got a box, painted it green and said that before any meeting, all electronics have to go in the box for the duration of hte class/meeting/whatever. However, no one is using it! BUT: No one is usingtheir stuff during class either. It's the fear of the Green Box, I guess!!

At 2:00 PM, Blogger Laurien said...

One really big pet peeve I have is hair. I hate when hair is all over the floor, I just find it disturbing. And it really does not help that I live in a house where it's all over the place. The funny thing is that the hair doesn't belong to any of the people who actually live in the house. It's not my grade of hair, my dad is bald and my brother has a really short haircut. So as a result I walk around the house with my shoes on. I only take them off when I'm in my room.

I also wished someone had warned me about living with men. The smells alone are enough to make me gag.

At 2:02 PM, Blogger Valerie said...

Oh! Maybe this is more of a pet peeve, but the incorrect use of apostrophes drives me NUTS! Do they not teach the difference between plurals and possessives in school anymore? GAH!

At 2:05 PM, Blogger Valerie said...

Ok, I am also persnickety about my media. My CDs have to be arranged alphabetically. If there is more than one CD by that artist, then they are arranged chronologically as well.

At 2:14 PM, Blogger Rhonda/WA state said...

I am a white chocolate mocha from Starbucks snob. I have yet to find one anywhere else that tastes as good. I don't care to drink anything else from Starbucks. Their regular coffee doesn't do it for me.

If when out with friends and they want to stop and get a coffee somewhere else, I'll actually try to find a Starbucks close by. That's not too hard to do since they're on every corner here in Washington.

A big peeve is cell phone use while driving. Driving behind some lady with a hand-held while she's trying to decide which lane to be in, drives me crazy. (She's probably trying to find out where Starbucks is located...........)

At 2:36 PM, Blogger Colleen Coble said...

I'm anal about colors. I can't help it. I see a redhead wearing pink lipstick and I cringe. Or a winter wearing brown. Cover your ears, Di. LOL

I'm also obsessive about health stuff. I research everything. If I weren't an author, I'd be a doctor. LOL

At 3:20 PM, Blogger Diann Hunt said...

LOL, Colleen!!!!

Hmm, I used to be a lot more anal than I am these days. I've learned to chill out. Life's too short to worry about things.

Still, it makes me crazy to see a mispelled word in the subject line of an email. Isn't that just weird that i worry about that? But I mean, when you've got emails flying back and forth and that SAME word is spelled wrong over and over again, well, I just feel like it's abuse of some kind.

So there you have it. Now I'll bet you anything the Girls will send me an email with a mispelled word in the subject line.

If they do, I'll just get out my INSTANT coffee and drink it in their honor. *g*

At 3:35 PM, Blogger Kristin said...

I only notice weight on myself, and only because my clothes get tight. I was just so sickly skinny as a kid, and I think that I am vain about ME, I really see other people's insides.

I see something to envy in everyone pretty much. You know, Oprah said people with weight issues, wear their issues on the outside. We all do in some way. I ran into this woman who was just all muscle, middle age, not an ounce of fat, a gym rat, driving a sports car, not married, very pretty -- and I thought you can't see HER issues on the outside?

Gosh, look at the Hollywood chicks and how sickly skinny they are, and the old women who don't age. That just freaks me out. I was in Long's the other day and there was this OLD woman, bent over, hair so thin you saw her bald head underneath and when she turned around, she had the face of a 40 year old from plastic surgery. That just freaked me out.

At 3:44 PM, Blogger Mocha with Linda said...

1) Grammar and typos and spelling and I'm right there with Valerie about apostrophes on plurals.

2) I'm not a very neat housekeeper but I HAVE to make the bed. Makes me crazy and unsettled feeling to walk in the room and see it disheveled.

3) Money - yes, I'm one of those that puts my bills in order with the $1 bills in front, facing forward and right side up. And the change has to be in the coin compartment. None of this tossing it in the bottom of the purse.

4) Napkins - put them in the holder with the fold facing OUT so you know how many you are getting and it doesn't come unfolded when you pull it out.

There's plenty more, but I'll stop. . . .

Not obsessive about plants - can't remember to water them to save my life! Or cleaning.

At 4:16 PM, Blogger Gracie said...

1) Grammar. Speaking, writing, reading. I annoy my family and myself because I'm constantly correcting someone's speech. And on a bad writing day, all I can see are the grammar errors on my wip and how a sentence doesn't fit in.

2) Health. I read nutrition labels, notice fat content, etc. Funny thing is, I never really listen to these things when I walk into Starbuck. ; )

3) Books. I notice the weirdest things about books. Smell, cover, even cover font. And all of it might decide whether or not I buy the book.

4) Height. As a short person, I note how much taller everyone else is. Though if I strike up a conversation, this noticing fades and I start watching that person's subtle movements.

Yeah, people can be a weird bunch! Guess it's just how God programmed all of us

At 5:23 PM, Blogger Rachel Holliday said...

I can't stand to see documents created on a computer but not formatted in any particular way. How difficult is it to click on the "Center" icon or change the font? I cannot be content with the Arial font on any document, even if it is the snack schedule for my child's baseball team.

I like an organized silverware drawer. I want the salad forks to be together, the dinner forks in their proper slot, and please don't mix the tea spoons with the soup spoons.

Oh, and this never bothered me until someone else mentioned it; toilet paper needs to roll over the top. I have been known to take the roll off and switch it.

Spelling errors bother me too. Oh, and the apostrophes? It bugs me when someone writes "you're" when they mean "your".

At 7:56 PM, Blogger Sarah said...

I must be exceptionally anal, because as I read everyone else's issues, I find myself agreeing with them and thinking, "that's an issue?"

Some of my annoying tendencies include my eagle eye for a sentence that ends with a preposition. I probably am guilty of this error when I speak, because my mind and my mouth don't operate at the same rate of speed. But when reading or writing, I go nuts over such errors. Do not ask me "what can I help you with?" And political views aside, Obama's slogan "Change We Can Believe In" compels me to say "change in which we can believe" every time I see his commercials.

One of my other meaningless obsessions is that when typing a document, I must type with all the characters on so I can make sure there are no unnecessary tabs or spaces and that the formatting is perfectly consistent throughout the entire document. I just can't let it leave my desk knowing those hidden errors are lingering in the document. As if the next person will type with the characters on, notice, or care.

My husband says I have a very long list of anal retentive behaviors, but he's pretty bad too. Pictures in an album must be in chronological order. I have actually seen the man insert a picture someone else gave him into the middle of the album and move the rest of the pictures one space forward.

However, I do have my areas of normalcy. We have had some serious discussions about why I always squeeze the toothpaste from the middle of the tube when it makes more sense to squeeze it from the end. Now that I know it bothers him so much, I sometimes do it on purpose and then chuckle to myself when I hear an audible sigh from the bathroom.

At 8:46 PM, Blogger Jaime said...

WOW. I read all the posts and realize I must be an extremely oblivious person. All these annoyances were NEW to me!

Colleen, I'm sorry, I'm an Autumn but I wore pale pink the other day. Is that a no-no?
(sorry, i had to ask since the subject came up!)

My annoyances are more personality-related:

1) Adults who react like Jr. Highers and throw temper tantrums at work (yes, it happened the other day - seriously)

2) People who check out in a 20 item or less line with 149 items. And they don't get it!! If they at least REALIZED they were breaking the rules, but it's the ones who are oblivious who drive me nuts

3) Drivers who can't hold to a speed limit. If you're going to drive like you're 102, then at least hold to 25 mph in a 65 zone, don't go from 25 to 38 to 14 to 43, etc.

4) Can I be REALLY rude? ... why don't mothers take their screaming toddlers out of church service instead of letting them holler so loud the pastor has to speak louder ot be heard? I'm not a mother, so maybe I'm missing something ...

Non-people-related? (i sound so intolerant, don't i?)

1) Dirt on my kitchen floor. Annoys me when it sticks to my socks or barefeet. Ew.

Other than that, I think that's about it.

OH! No, one more thing:

Neighbor kids using my basketball hoop and driveway without asking and me nearly running them over when I get home not expecting a driveway full of 8 year olds. I'm more cautious now, but seriously, when did trespassing become an expected norm?

Miss Negativity

At 10:55 PM, Blogger Kayla said...

Oh! I completely agree about the hair thing. UGH. I went to a friend's house and her sister had left a bunch of hair just smeared on the shower wall. I kept a wary eye on it the WHOLE TIME I was in the shower like it was going to come eat me. Gag.

At 1:06 AM, Blogger MelanieWrites said...

Between you and I

Arrrrrrrgh! The pronoun is the object of the preposition between and therefore gets the objective form, me. It wouldn't be so bad, but people who say it sometimes have this superior look like, "see, I have good grammar." No, you don't.

I used to have a problem with people using over when they mean more than, but I'm recovering. And technically, it should be 10 items or fewer in the checkout lane.

I'm a newspaper copy editor. I can't help it. I also obsess over compound modifiers.

At 1:40 AM, Blogger Anna Marie said...

Oh, No! I'm a miss speller and I have bad grammar. Now I'm just afraid to comment now.

At 4:49 AM, Blogger Melissa R said...

It is not only fascinating but very cool to see all these things everyone has written. Isn't it a good thing to be people who know exactly what you want? Reminds me more of Sally (Meg Ryan's character in the Harry Met Sally movie) rather than Monk. I always thought it was so wonderful that she always knew exactly what she wanted -- most of the time "on the side."(So she could control the amount...)

At 7:05 AM, Blogger hotcoffeenow said...

My husband thinks I'm a freak because I'm so OCD about things, but after reading that others have the same issues, I feel in good company, lol. The towels thing? I thought for SURE I was the only one who required them to be folded correctly (and placed with the fold facing out and to the left in the closet!). If I find them any other way (yea, as if any one else in the house would do laundry - ha!) I'll take them all out and refold them. But the clutter on the kitchen counter - the papers, mail, stuffed animals, change, etc? I can not notice it for days. Toilet paper not over? My eyes roll back in my head. Grammatical and spelling errors? Nails on a chalkboard. After a spoken error, I cannot hear anything else that's been said because my mind is still focused on the error, lol. Underwear must be folded in 3rds and then in half - even thongs, lol. How could anyone just THROW them in the drawer? I used to even iron my cotton undies and sheets - but I've mellowed some with age. :)It's interesting to hear all of the ocd issues, lol. Makes me feel normal.

At 8:02 AM, Blogger hotcoffeenow said...

I forgot.....when people call me Eye-talian. I tend to get a little ocd about educating them - even if they are working in an eye-talian restaurant at the time. :0

At 8:25 AM, Blogger Katy McKenna said...

When I'm making a list, and (let's say) I need to purchase a birthday card for my mother, I can't just write "birthday card." Even if she's the only birthday for weeks on end, I MUST write "birthday card for Mom." I have TRIED to stop myself from being so specific, but I can't. Talk about OVERSHARING. :)

Katy McKenna

At 9:12 AM, Blogger Rhonda/WA state said...

Ok, I thought of another. My son was mowing the lawn yesterday. He didn't edge it. I can't stand seeing a mowed lawn without the edges being trimmed. So, there I am with the weed-wacker.

One thing that bothers me A LOT is the fact that I actually passed English class in school. I cannot for the life of me remember what I learned! I have trouble with where to put the comma, when to use the apostrophy, etc. etc.

I think a fix for that is that I won't write. I'll just read!

At 9:48 AM, Blogger hotcoffeenow said...


Pick up a copy of Eats, Shoots and Leaves.

At 9:02 PM, Blogger Steph said...

For me, it is always strange things. I like to put my clothes in order (although they aren't in order now because I haven't had the time, and it is driving me crazy.) What I mean by "order" is I put all the tank tops with the tank tops, in order of color, and then a repeat and do the same thing with short sleeves/long sleeves. I put my jeans and shorts in order from light washed to dark washed.

Oh and I love to have my DVDs in order. I want to follow suit with my books, but considering I own a couple hundred books at least, it will probably take awhile before they are all together. ;)

At 9:10 PM, Blogger Rhonda/WA state said...

Ok, I'm curious. What's "Eats, Shoots and Leaves"?

At 9:06 AM, Blogger hotcoffeenow said...

It's a funny book with a pretty good explanation of how/when to use commas and apostrophes......

At 4:35 PM, Blogger Rhonda/WA state said...

Thanks! I ordered it from the library.


Post a Comment

<< Home

The Authors
Kristin Billerbeck
Kristin Billerbeck is a proud Californian, wife, mother of four, and connoisseur of the irrelevant. She writes Christian Chick Lit; where she finds need for most of the useless facts lulling about in her head.

Colleen Coble

Colleen Coble writes romantic suspense with a strong atmospheric element. A lovable animal of some kind--usually a dog--always populates her novels. She can be bribed with DeBrand mocha truffles.

Denise Hunter

Denise Hunter writes women's fiction and love stories with a strong emotional element. Her husband says he provides her with all her romantic material, but Denise insists a good imagination helps too.

Diann Hunt

Diann Hunt writes romantic comedy and humorous women's fiction. She has been happily married forever, loves her family, chocolate, her friends, chocolate, her dog, and well, chocolate.

Hannah Alexander

Cheryl Hodde writes romantic medical suspense under the pen name of Hannah Alexander, using all the input she can get from her husband, Mel, for the medical expertise. For fun she hikes and reads. Out of guilt, she rescues discarded cats. She and Mel are presently taking orders from four pampered strays.

Enter your Email

Powered by FeedBlitz