BG: One of the things my SIL does would drive me crazy and I have never said anything because it's her home, it's her family and it's none of my business how she runs these things (I wouldn't do it this way but TOTALLY NONE OF MY BUSINESS).
It's not that she doesn't cook (because she rarely does) it's that she feeds all the grandchildren one at a time and something different for each of them (she also used to do this with her own children) and they are allowed to walk through her home with food in their hands all the time. SIL does not have custody of any of her grandchildren but she has them almost ALL of the time it seems, particularly on weekends.
While we are sitting at her kitchen table visiting they come to her one at a time with requests. For example: 6:00 Child A asks for a bean burrito and she gets up and fixes one, 6:20 Child B asks for a peanut butter sandwich and she fixes one, 6:40 Child C asks for a fruit pie and SIL gets up and gets her one. 6:45 Child A wants a drink of milk, SIL fixes one, then at 6:55 Children B & C both want a drink of koolaid, so of course she fixes each of them one. Sigh, for the next hour or so one or another child is in there wanting something every 10-15 minutes and she fixes that child the one thing. I asked her several times if we needed to get up and make dinner for the kids. Oh no she said, I just fix them whatever they want. Needless to say, you can't have a whole conversation without being continuously interrupted.
Again, her house her rules - let's be clear that I do not say anything about it, never have, never will, I think it's weird but it works for her.
I hosted an early dinner a couple of weeks ago on Sunday afternoon and invited Bro and SIL. While I didn't actually invite the grandchildren she brought two of them to dinner which was fine and didn't really surprise me. They usually play pretty good with my grandchildren so it's a non-issue for this conversation - but just get an idea of how they act at her home and apparently at others.
Child A wanted a sandwich before the barbecue was ready and I told her she would have to wait that we were all having dinner together in a few minutes. She went and asked SIL if she would "make me" make her a sandwich.
SIL asked if "I minded if she made her a sandwich" and I calmly said, "actually yes I do mind. We are all going to sit at the table in a few minutes and eat together and she will have to wait like everyone else." And I said this as politely as I could, I was aggravated but I did not use a pissy tone, it was almost apologetic because I do not want to offend SIL.
I don't feel like I was out of line here, my house, my rules. And we did sit down in about 10 minutes to eat. While Child A never said anything else about it, SIL seemed a bit cool the rest of the day.
A few days later Bro called to say that SIL mentioned how rude I was to Child A. Bro said, "why because she doesn't feed everyone at her house one at a time?" Apparently this has started a big uproar between them. He says that he has been after her to stop doing this too, it drives him crazy.
Well, grand, now I am the troublemaker between them! Sigh. SIL is not a drama queen or special snowflake, she does some things differently from how I do them, some of her ideas I adapted with my own kids through the years and vice-versa. I don't want anyone to think I don't like or respect SIL, I adore her and we talk on the phone several times a week but we don't get together very often. I haven't heard from her since the "incident" we have texted a few times - but both of us have been very busy too, we discussed this before the bbq weekend, September's calendar was overwhelming for both of us.
I left her two voice messages she hasn't returned either call. Any ideas? I am not inclined to apologize, I don't feel like I did anything wrong. And if she is mad at Bro she needs to address with with him. I don't want our friendship sunk but she is obviously angry and avoiding me. Should I be prepared to apologize?
I am sorry that she got her feelings hurt or whatever it was that made her angry. I'm not sorry I made her granddaughter wait to eat with the rest of us.