The official blog of author Jean Marie Bauhaus

Domestic Bliss

On Saturday I went thrifting at a nearby Salvation Army store. I found a suitable (if not perfect) Other Mother dress, and a couple of work skirts, among other things. Other finds include two warm winter coats – an anorak-style jacket that matches the color of my eyes (baby poop green), and a tailored dark navy wool coat that looks like it will attract all the cat hair in the house if I’m not careful. The wool is very soft, though, and both coats are pretty snuggly, and I finally have winter coats that aren’t from Target or Old Navy and that are actually warm, hooray!

I also picked up a black shirt dress with a white collar and cuffs. It was cute as is, but the skirt half is a bit tight (but would probably look fine over some Spanx) and has some small grease stains, so I plan to cut it off and hem it and make a cute top out of it. Yesterday I washed it, and while it was hanging on the line I looked out at it and something pinged my brain and said, “Hey! That’s a Wednesday Addams dress!” So now I’m conflicted about my costume. Except not really, because people at my office will most likely (I hope) understand Wednesday Addams, and I don’t really want to pay to have an apron overnighted in time for Fake Office Halloween, and I’m pretty confident I can make a Wednesday wig in time. But it all hinges on whether I’m right about the Spanx.

I think I was born to be a housewife.

Speaking of the clothesline, I love spending my time at home, doing domestic things. If I could tell my 20-something self that, she would want to drug me and lock me up somewhere until I stopped talking crazy-talk, so it’s probably a good thing that I can’t do that. But I love it. Yesterday, I spent all day doing laundry and dishes and vacuuming and making things clean and presentable. I even hung the laundry out to dry for the first time ever, and it took a long time, but the weather was beautiful and Speedy Pete was running around under my feet and I was in my happy place the entire time. If this was my full-time job, I would have no complaints. Okay, maybe I would. But not as many as I have now.

I’m pretty sure it all started with the knitting.

But I’ll take working at home as the second-best option.

This is why I’m going to take a course in copy editing in the spring. I know that sounds sudden and typically flaky after I’ve been talking about web design courses all this time, but that’s only because you don’t remember (or weren’t around) a few years ago when I wanted to hire myself out as a freelance copy editor, but didn’t think I had the right experience and training to pass the tests. Back then it didn’t even occur to me that you could take a course in it–I assumed you had to have an entire English or Journalism degree. But Mediabistro has a course that looks both respectable and useful, and my company will pay for it, and after that I should be able to pass the requisite tests and get some freelance work. And if 9 to 5 office jobs are my eternal destiny, I would enjoy proofreading all day much more than doing what I do currently. So, I’ve got that going for me.

I still want to learn web design, though.


A plea for help


That sounds about right.


  1. Weeeeell, I don’t want to take the domestic excitement from you, so I’ll just say a) I’m glad you’re so happy, and b) I hope you feel the same in ten years. *glee*
    I loved loved my copy editing class. It’s helped so much with my own academic writing. (Haven’t written much else ‘cept el jay posts.) It’s neat that your work is paying for the course.

    • Hee. I’m sure the mommy part factors into the decline in housework enjoyment, and I still don’t know whether that’s in my future. But I’m also sure ten years of doing it is also a major factor. I can’t keep up enthusiasm for anything for that long.
      Oh, and I found my APA style manual the other day when I was cleaning at my mom’s, and thought of you. I wondered if I should hold onto it in case Matt ever needs it, but if you could use it, it’s yours.
      Also, keep watching your mail. I made you something, but now I can’t find where I put it, so I might have to make it again. But it’s coming.

  2. Take any courses your work will pay for. The more experience you have, the better. I don’t want to rain on your parade, but I’m not certain there are many proofreading jobs out there. Spelling correction programs have eliminated the need in many cases. I proofread for a newspaper and a couple of printing plants back in the day, but I could see the handwriting on the wall when computers became prevalent. And proofreading is a high-stress job. If you work for a newspaper, there is always a deadline. If you work for a printing plant, you can’t make a mistake. Something to think about.

    • But copy editing is a lot more than just proofreading and correcting errors. That’s just part of the job, and I was being a little facetious when I talked about doing it all day long. It’s more like beta line reading, offering suggestions for better wording, sentence structure, etc., and making sure the author writes according to the in-house style manual. It can also involve fact checking and research. According to the stats I checked out, it’s a pretty in-demand position, and it pays better than what I’m doing now (it doesn’t start out at a lot more, but the potential for much better pay is there). Thanks for your concern, but I assure you, I’ve thought a lot about it. 🙂
      Freelance and work-at-home copy editor jobs are also pretty prevalent, but like I said, they usually make you take a test to make sure you know the various style manuals. I tried studying them all myself, but I need the structure of a class for any of it to stick.

      • It looks like you’ve done your homework.
        Yes, I’ve done studying at home, and it is hard without structure and oversight.

  3. Spanx (or generic versions) are a godsend for sure 😀

    • True. And yeah to generic. That’s what I meant, but that’s too wordy and Spanx sounds better than “girdle” or “fat minimizer” or…yeah. And hey, I’m wearing a Target brand right now!

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