The Museum of Things I’m Absolutely Going to Get To Eventually

Hi, and welcome to the Museum of Things I’m Absolutely Going to Get To Eventually.  If some of the exhibits make you uncomfortable, do not worry, I am absolutely going to get to all of this stuff eventually!  I really am.  Really!  If you haven’t been here before, let me give you a quick rundown before we do the tour.

The museum was founded several years ago and is a bit of a passion project for me– it’s something that just sort of organically grew out of having three people living in an apartment combined with my inability, between child-rearing, a pregnancy, and writing projects, to find time to do any sort of cleaning or maintenance.

If you want we can start in the front room and then work our way back.


“Dead Flowers”

Early 2016

dried flowers I love to ease people in with this piece, which we call “dead flowers” and which, true to form, is an actual vase of dead flowers.  Some friends bought me a bouquet of flowers four months ago and after changing the water two or three times, I literally just left them in a vase until they died.  This piece will remain on display until someone else buys me flowers because I’ll need the vase.


“From When I Painted”


tape on wall theuglyvolvo

A testament to both good intentions and mild attention deficit disorder, “From When I Painted” was created in 2010 when I taped under the cabinets in order to paint part of the kitchen and then forgot to remove that tape because it’s not easily visible if you’re standing up straight.  The piece is revisited each time I bend down to use the toaster, when I inevitably go, “Oh hey, I never pulled off that blue tape from when I painted the kitchen,” and then continue to not remove it as I walk away eating my toast.




lint the ugly volvo

An ongoing master work, “Lint” is created and re-created each time I do a load of laundry which is probably not as often as I should be doing laundry, considering I literally live with someone who I yesterday caught putting pieces of shrimp cocktail in the cargo pocket of his shorts.  This piece came into being because our dryer is in our living room and the nearest garbage can is over 30 feet away and I would rather let the lint build up for weeks in this bowl than walk literally 30 feet because apparently I am the laziest, most unmotivated person who has ever walked the earth.

I am also mildly fascinated by the fact that every time I do a load of laundry, enough pieces of fabric are lost to create a tiny gray blanket.  I am interested to know how many times I would have to wash a load of laundry for the clothes to disintegrate/disappear completely, mainly because I would no longer have to wash that load of laundry anymore.



oven dirty the ugly volvo
This piece is mixed media but according to experts is about 80% Parmesan cheese.


“Beneath the Sideboard”


dust under sideboard

This is an extremely controversial piece which may cause people discomfort, particularly if those people are my mother who is currently at home sobbing and going, “How hard would it be to just buy a dustbuster??? (Holds face in hands)”  While my floors have never been as clean as hers, this has gotten particularly out of hand the further the pregnancy has progressed since I have difficulty getting down low to clean things.  I now look at my kitchen floor in much the way most people look at the political system– thinking, “Oh my, what an ungodly mess,” with mixed feelings of frustration and helplessness.


“Water Damage”


water damage ceiling

This piece dates back to 2012, during the horrible rainstorms that happened before we got the roof fixed.  There’s no mold, just discoloration but don’t stress because I am totally totally going to get around to painting this.  Maybe even later tonight I’ll do it.  Ok, I’m actually sort of tired tonight so maybe not tonight, but definitely soon.



Cords the ugly volvo

This piece is an L.L. Bean bag full of electronic equipment and cords that I can’t throw away because what if I need one of them someday??  Experts postulate that the bag may contain as many as three flip phones.

“Jute Rug”


destroyed rug theuglyvolvo

This piece centers around an actual jute rug I obtained in 2008 and involves my waking up every morning and pulling pieces of frayed rope out of my foot.  An interactive part of the piece involves me going online once every two weeks or so to look at replacement rugs but never following through and buying anything because what if I get the wrong size or something?

“Iron in Holder”


My iron the ugly volvo

My son saw his grandmother using one of these and went “What’s that?” and I went “It’s an iron,” which was a pretty solid clue to my mother that in the 3 years that he has been alive I have never once ironed anything except possibly my bangs.

“Photographs That I Am Absolutely Going to Organize And Put Into Albums Just As Soon as Life Calms Down a Little Bit and I Can Catch My Breath”


fotos the ugly volvo

 This piece is an enormous pile of photographs that I printed out using Snapfish and am totally going to organize and put in an album as soon as I get a free minute.  “Photographs” will be on display indefinitely and is actually an interactive piece that involves someone with older children/more life experience politely laughing at me.

Thank you so much for visiting.

*               *               *

Welcome to the Club: 100 Parenting Milestones You Never Saw Coming

If you enjoyed this piece, please follow The Ugly Volvo on Facebook or Twitter.  If you are totally horrified and aghast at the condition of my apartment and can’t even look at these pictures without cringing, you should follow my mom on Facebook or Twitter so if she ever starts a public page I’ll keep you in the loop.

I also wrote and illustrated a book called Welcome to the Club: 100 Parenting Milestones You Never Saw Coming which will be released September 20th and if you’d like to pre-order it, you can do it on Barnes and Noble, Amazon, or Indiebound.  The book is lightweight, deals with parenting, and contains almost no advice.  I heard that if you buy a copy you will have nothing but fantastic hair days for the rest of your life but again, you can’t trust everything you read on the internet so don’t quote me on that.

If you’d like to visit the Museum of Things I am Absolutely Going to Get To Eventually, we are open every day (including holidays) from 6:30AM – 8:30 PM or whatever time we collapse into bed. 

Admission is $7 for adults, Free for children under 5.

23 CommentsComment

  1. This is great! As a mom of 7 with a little more experience with being this type of personality, I have an idea for you. Your child’s first chore should be emptying the dryer lint bowl into the trashcan. My four-year-old puts sacks in the trash cans after one of his older siblings takes out the trash. I don’t know why, but I will just pile trash on the counter forever rather than put the sack in myself. I did actually take care of this corner in my kitchen that I was going to ‘spring’ clean yesterday on my kids’ first day of school.

  2. I loved this! So great. You are a wonderful writer please keep writing and forget the cleaning!

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    I think you might be my spirit animal…

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    Your lint pile confirms a long-held belief that New Yorkers wear too much black! Out here in the West, we have much more colorful lint. And just a word of warning from dreadful experience: if you ever get around to removing the painting tape, use a razor blade, or the dried-up tape with paint on it will stay with the wall.

    Love your posts!

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      Raquel D'Apice

      just removed the tape and totally should have read this comment first…*sigh*

  5. You are my new best friend! I have a large laundry detergent box stuffed full of dryer lint. I’m hoping there will someday be enough for batting in a small lap quilt for the livingroom. That of course after I finish the wall hanging for my brother and his wife, a denim quilt for my bed, and any number of other “projects” I have stated over the years, (which will likely produce enough lint for a whole new quilt!).

  6. I can totally show you the same pics in my house, down to the lint….

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    Ledoux Hansen

    Dear, distant friend, You may not be glad tp hear that your elegant, curator’s tour (“Things I am Going to Get Around To .. someday..”) resonated deeply with this 74 yr. old grandmother! – In my case, it is a perfectionist daughter, & possibly somevprecoscious grandchildren, who focus sharply on what may be crumbs of senility hidden beneath the stove. They are not there. I, too, have a collageof froggy tape masking the base of some kitchen cupboatds, and a really detailed concept of the way they will look when finished, in about 5 years. You, writer, are a gem. Never mind the dust bunnies.. Soft focus, soft focus! Keep these pieces coming! When you are my age, you will have bookcases full of your own collected essays, the delight of millions. And you can pay spmeone else to paint the ceiling & take that li t out of the dryer, if you still care!

  8. You are my twin. I write a weekly column in my local newspaper. This week’s article is titled “Spring Cleaning”. (Laughing) I like your title better. Our mother will cringe when the article is published.

  9. Want to join me in starting an “as you are” club with your friends? Club members take turns hosting each othet without even making a pretence of cleaning up first. That way all members get to see each other’s embarrassingly filthy/messy homes “au natural” and feel human together.

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      Raquel D'Apice

      this is a totally lovely idea that would literally make my mother keel over dead so to protect her I can’t…

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