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1,000 points to the first person who can translate the title.

I always get a little nutty before I leave for a trip.

You’d think I’d be doing real preparations, like diligently laying  clothes on my bed and testing their fit in various suitcases and carry-ons, performing a pageant of mini-toiletries on the bathroom vanity stage while judging which ones to tuck inside my bi-fold sundry travel pouch, and scheduling various rub-downs and polishes and waxages to prepare myself (and the world at large) for superfluous amounts of exposed skin.

But no.

I never pack more than half a day ahead of time.  Even for that 2 month trip to Costa Rica.  See, I don’t know what kind of money the rest of you people are made of, but I actually need the stuff I pack.  My closet isn’t divided into a “vacation stuff” section and a “regular stuff” section.  (Though wouldn’t that be nice?)

To me, that would be a waste — like dumping out half a pot of stale coffee and buying towels solely for decoration.

In true procrastinator style, I pack everything in my head weeks in advance, and then I pretty much just dump everything into my bag the night before we leave, toss in a few extras before we hop in the car, and assume that a) I can most likely buy anything pertinent I forget, and b) I most likely won’t die if I forget anything I can’t buy, because nothing is really that pertinent, when you think about it.

Unfortunately, my particular brand of stinginess now has vacation prep spillover into the arena of professional pedicures and BZM (Bikini Zone Management).

Did every guy who reads Domestiphobia just get uncomfortable?  Are there any of you left??

That’s right.  Now that I no longer have a steady paycheck and some nights leave the bar with only $11.80 in my pocket (no, I don’t want to talk about it), certain extravagances like trips to the spa are few and far between.

This kills me for 2 reasons:

1)  Until fairly recently, I had never really been a “spa girl.”  I felt uncomfortable with the idea of strangers touching my feet and picking at my toenails and judging my body hair.  But then, once a co-worker broke me in to the wonderful world of soothing aromatherapies and trickling fountains and music with flutes and complimentary wine, there was no turning back.

2)  Until very recently, pedicures were something I bought for fun — a relaxing day with a girlfriend.  Plus, when my feet look pretty, I feel pretty.  Happy feet equal a happy Katie.  I didn’t actually crave pedicures until I could no longer afford them — until I quit my cubicle job and started waiting tables, running around a restaurant without sitting down for 5-9 hours at a time.

Oh, the irony.

But it’s not a total loss.  Between small tubs of soapy water, $1 mini bottles of toenail polish, pumice stones and drugstore supplies of Nair, I’ll get something worked out before we leave.

See?  DIY applies to pedicures and BZM — not just home improvements.

So if I’m not busy packing or primping, what, exactly, makes me so nutty before a trip?

House cleaning.

Yep, I’m that girl.

When I can see a departure date fast approaching, I start looking around my house — at the small layer of dust coating the bookshelves, the un-vacuumed carpets, the spotty mirrors — and my eye starts to twitch.

(Okay, not really, but my friends know I like to do this fake eye twitch thing when I get irritated.  Yes, I’m weird.  This shouldn’t be news to you.)

How can we leave the house in such disarray? my frantic mind wonders.

What kind of mold might grow on those leftovers if we don’t eat them or throw them out?

What if someone breaks in while we’re gone and sees what filthy pigs we are??

But mostly, I just don’t want to come home from a long vacation knowing one of the first things I’ll have to do (besides laundry) is clean.


So that’s why I’ve been slightly MIA lately.  That, and the fact that I’m trying to plan a not-so-typical baby shower for Alaina (more on that later — it will involve alcohol), edit some photos I took for my neighbor, beta read my friend’s novel, start/finish a few other writing obligations, and complete a slurry of other tasks/projects to which I’ve committed myself before we leave.

WHAT was I thinking?

The only thing keeping me motivated at this point is knowing that soon, sweet soon, I will be here:

And if anything can numb an overwhelming sense of unfinished obligations, it’s sun, sand, and Spanish wine.

dolce far niente.

Which is Italian, not Spanish, but it doesn’t really matter because pretty much all of those Europeans have it figured out.


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Marisa Wikramanayake


Oh My God, it’s Do It Yourself Bikini Zone Management Before Flying Day!


Haha, close, but not quite! BFD is a generic one, but I actually kind of like how you hand-tailored it to my post. Nicely done! :)


what she said above me, but BFD is big F@$%^%$ deal. I am the same way with cleaning before I go anywhere. I tell my husband the house has to be company ready- because heaven forbid, if something were to happen to us when we are gone, I wouldn’t want my last memories for my family to be “Oh My God! She was SUCH a disgusting pig! What did she do everyday? Obviously not clean!!!!” Yeah, that won’t happen. The husband will have to learn that I won’t be leaving until the sheets are clean, beds are made, dishes are done, and the sink is sparkling.


You guessed it. ;)

I’m so glad to hear I’m not alone in my freakishness! And crap, you had to remind me about the sheets… :)

Dennis Hong

Ha. I totally know that fake eye twitch. My ex (who, interestingly, is also named Katie) does that, too!


Ha! So maybe it’s just a “Katie thing” and I’m not a freak, after all. Or maybe we’re all freaks…

Dennis Hong

Well, if you really are freaks, I’d say that it’s for other reasons…. ;-)


Haha, right on!

Dennis Hong

Oooh, was that a compliment or an insult? Oooh. You will never know. :-p

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