Back Around the House II: Wardrobe expands over the years


Way back—about 30 years ago—when our eight children were little, I spent a lot of time in the children’s clothing department of various stores looking for clothing bargains.

Actually when there are eight to buy for just about anything on sale cheap enough was a bargain because it was bound to fit one of them sometime. Even if it were really weird but dirt cheap it could be used for a Halloween costume

Then, all of a sudden, it seemed, the kids were grown and gone. I never really suffered much from empty nest syndrome. In fact, empty nest is one of my favorite syndromes so far, because empty nest meant empty closets.

I was teaching every day. I needed clothes—lots of them. It really wasn’t fair to my students to appear before them in the same old outfits week after week. English is a necessary subject, but not always fascinating. For the days I could not jazz up the subject matter I could at least jazz up my wardrobe.

With this justification glowing in my mind I discovered the ladies clothing department. Before this when something wore out I grabbed something off the sales rack and hoped for the best. Now I had time to shop. Time to pick and choose among all those colorful offerings. And I had enough money to pay for whatever I chose, if I chose carefully. And, I had closet space.

It didn’t take long at all to fill both sides of the first empty closet. Fall and winter clothes were on one side, spring and summer were on the other.

Time passed and I continued to shop and buy. Pretty soon there were two closets full—one side for each season.

By this time my husband’s wardrobe had expanded to both sides of one closet in our room. And I needed more space, so I bought over-the-door racks. They were for the clothes that could be worn more than once before laundering if they were on hangers instead of in hampers.

My husband questioned why they were necessary. I pointed out that he now had a full closet. He countered that I had three closets, counting the new racks.

“So, I’m not always the same size. Sometimes I’m up, sometimes I’m down,” I could see this was not computing for him. “It’s a woman thing!” I finished lamely.

“Wait a minute. Okay, I understand two closets and separating seasons. But what’s the third one?” he asked reasonably.

Without blinking an eye I told him, “My old maternity clothes, course.”

He was incredulous. “We’ve been married almost 40 years. Our youngest child is close to 30. We have 20 grandkids.”

I nodded in solemn agreement.

“Now don’t you think you could get rid of the maternity clothes?” he reasoned.

“Oh, no nossir. No way! Never!

I could tell by the look on his face he needed more explanation. “Everybody knows what happens as soon as you get rid of all the baby stuff. I’m taking no chances. The maternity clothes stay forever!”

AUTHOR’S NOTE: This column was first published in the Greenville Advocate on Oct. 3, 1996.

By Kathleen Floyd

Back Around the House II

Kathleen Floyd is a volunteer citizen columnist, who serves The Daily Advocate readers weekly with her column Back Around the House II. She can be reached at [email protected]. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.

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