Dear Annie

Let the dust settle

Annie Lane, syndicated columnist

Dear Annie: My wife and I are a retired elderly couple living in a ranch-style home. Over the last four years, my wife has had some health issues and is limited in what she can do. I have been more or less a caregiver, doing all the chores around the house, such as cleaning, washing clothes, cooking and shopping.

Her daughter, who is my stepdaughter and over 50 years old, has been asking to help us with the housework. So, this past week, we asked her to clean a dining room for us by dusting; washing windows; cleaning woodwork, a china closet, a buffet and a dining table; and sweeping the floor. I noticed this morning that the buffet looked unclean. I took a baby wipe and just went along the edges, and it was not clean, and the baby wipe was very dirty.

I asked my wife if her daughter had cleaned the buffet. She said yes and that she applied Pledge. Should I approach my stepdaughter, who has a temper? I paid $50 for her work. Should I ignore it or tell her about my finding? Maybe I should just do the work myself. — Dusty Buffet Table

Dear Dusty: It sounds like your stepdaughter might not be the best housekeeper in the world. At the same time, you sound very particular about how cleaning is done. Don’t say anything to your stepdaughter. She obviously tried, and her mom is not doing well. Just don’t have her clean again.

Dear Annie: This is an open letter to the women’s nightwear industry. Give us feminine pajamas. By us, I mean petite women under size 5.

You make beautiful feminine nightgowns — that could go on the dance floor — but pajamas that look like we are going to work in the mines (or sleep in them). They have the same old men’s shirts with piping around and down the button front and patch pocket. Where are the laces, ribbons, bows, baby buttons, ruffles and frills? Anything that shows we are female and sexy?

We want necklines that are imaginative and decorative, that show we are women but not sluts. We want sleeves that keep us warm and are pretty, not just serviceable. We want bottoms to keep our thighs from sticking together when it’s hot, and to keep us warm when it’s cold. And do camouflage the bigness of them — maybe just below the knee to mid-calf with lace or ribbons. And enough fabric to span bigger bellies comfortably. Even at 77, I want to look feminine and sexy for ME, let alone a partner.

Use your imagination, and provide us pajamas we will be proud to wear. — Petite Lace and Bows

Dear Petite Lace and Bows: Perhaps a quick online search could help you find special-sized, feminine PJ’s. If you still can’t find them, well, here is an opportunity to start your own business of sexy, feminine PJ’s for petite women. Yes, even at 77!

Editor’s note: “Ask Me Anything: A Year of Advice From Dear Annie” is out now! Annie Lane’s debut book — featuring favorite columns on love, friendship, family and etiquette — is available as a paperback and e-book. Visit http://www.creatorspublishing.com for more information. Send your questions for Annie Lane to dearannie@creators.com.


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