I need help figuring out how to stay positive and not remark on the negative all the time.
A common example has to do with grocery shopping - about the only chore she still does routinely (often with reminding from me, but still . . . ) Anyway, I make the shopping list, and she often doesn't get what is on the list - or gets way too much of something (e.g. strawberries which we can't possibly eat ibefore they start going bad) or not enough of something (e.g. one bunch of broccoli which won't even last one day). I have asked her several times to buy what's on the list. I usually put quantities as well as items. And I have asked her NOT to get something if it's not on the list. When I say something to her, like - honey, I didn't put strawberries on the list, she'll say - I thought you said we were out of them. This no matter how many times I say to her - if it's not on the list, please don't get it. (Which she always acts as if she is hearing it for the first time.)
So my question is, what do I do/say in these situations? Do I just thank her for going to the store, and then ask her to go again the next day, or go myself the next day, to get what's needed? Is there some way I might get her to do a better job sticking to what's on the list? Nothing I have tried so far seems to work, including being very specific re: brand, size, quantity, etc.
Or when she does the laundry and everything comes out wrinkled because she forgets there are clothes in the dryer, doesn't hear the timer, hears the timer but ignores it, or whatever, do I just thank her for doing the laundry and then iron everything, when if I had done the laundry I wouldn't have had to iron a single item? My solution has been to take on doing the laundry myself, but when my schedule doesn't allow me to do it and she offers to do it for me, I usually say no, rather than ending up with all wrinkled clothes. Once she even promised me she would take the clothes right out of the dryer and when she didn't and I said somethng about the wrinkled clothes, she said there is something wrong with the washer/dryer, so I have not "let" her do my laundry since then.
Or when she tells me she will do something and then does it halfway - like clean up the kitchen after I have cooked a meal (and believe me, there's not much to clean up because I clean up after myself as I go), so that I have to go behind her, do I just say thank you and be glad she did even some of the cleanup, and then just finish cleaning myself, or do I mention that she didn't wipe the stove, put all the dishes into the dishwasher, left some things on the table, etc?