Mung day

A gray day in Arizona.

As I was thinking about my trip to Washington to celebrate my mom’s life, on Saturday my husband and I had a day where we didn’t want to do anything. I remembered my mom had days like that where she let us stay in our pajamas all day. She called them “mung days.”

I don’t know where she got that name for being lazy. I looked up “mung” at


something disgusting or offensive, especially filth or muck.

verb (used with object)

to make dirty (often followed by up).

to spoil, ruin, or destroy (often followed by up).

Maybe staying in your PJs all day doing nothing is filthy and disgusting?

I don’t remember the last time my husband and I had a “mung” day. He had a migraine Saturday. I was tired. We had a busy week and we went out with friends Friday night. On Saturday, I did my stretches, crunches, walk, dishes and laundry. Not a total waste of a day. I got out of my pajamas.

My mom on the other hand, had many a “mung” day. As I look back on my childhood, I remember full weeks when she didn’t get out of bed. Yes, she was a wonderful, loving mother. She was the mother I wrote about in the story I posted HERE who was talented and vibrant.

She was diagnosed as manic depressive, which is now called called bipolar. It wasn’t the easiest of childhoods for either my brother or me — because of both Mom and Dad. I’m pretty sure my kids would say the same thing about their childhoods, too.

I found this sign years ago in a gift shop and was immediately attracted to it. People laugh when they see it. I laugh too, but have memories that aren’t that funny.

I wrote a mid-grade novel loosely based on my childhood. I let several of my friends read it. One friend said, “I just want to give you a hug and raise you up all over again.”

I realized I didn’t want to have it published because it would be hurtful to Mom and Dad. So, the manuscript filled with emotions from my childhood sits quietly in a drawer. I may take a look at it again, maybe submit to publishers. Or maybe read it to recall my childhood days.

If you don’t have “mung” days, what do you do instead when you feel like not doing anything?

36 thoughts on “Mung day

  1. I’m perfectly ok with ado nothing day, where I binge tv, or read a novel, or just do nothing of substance. Sometimes we need it…

  2. I’m sorry to hear about your childhood. Many parents, I believe, would do things differently if they could go back in time. Then there are parents who are completely unaware of their own flaws. 

    Perhaps you will now be able to publish your book as part of your healing process.

    “Mung days” are, in my opinion, a good thing. We should all lay around all day in our pajamas more often.

  3. I remember my husband’s adage ‘try to get 3 things down like make the bed, make dinner, do some grading. I am good with that. My husband is a better relaxer than I am but I am learning. It is healthy.

  4. Lazy days of doing nothing are essential at times! That sign reminds me of how I wish our family had appeared to others during my childhood. I needed one that flashed in neon colors sitting on my chest as an alert. We were definitely not normal.

  5. Everyone needs to recharge sometimes. I have a hard time doing it but my body usually tells me when to lay in bed and read all day. My childhood was great but my kids could use that sign.

  6. Sorry about your childhood, we ALL have things that weren’t the best. As far as publishing, I wonder why people would want others to know about their unhappy family. For example, Prince Harry and his book. I have no interest in reading it. He has his sorrows, I have mine, so don’t need to read about what made him unhappy while he lives the life he does. Parents are people too, let them rest in peace, take up issues with them, if that’s not possible, talk to a therapist but no need to let the world see that. My opinion. LOL – we are parents, gee, I’m not perfect, but would be sad to see my children publish things about their childhood that was negative. We ALL do our BEST with what God gave us.

    • I totally agree with you about not airing our dirty laundry in a book. I would be horrified if my kids did that! I can’t remember which famous author said that the first book you write is about your mother. You put it away and write your next book. That was the first manuscript I wrote.

  7. I’ve learned to embrace the “mung days,” as sometimes it’s healthy to simply relax. My mom grew up in a similar environment to you and it left it’s mark. I bet it was cathartic to write about your experience and then tuck it away, at least for the time being. P.S. Love the picture! I think we’re just up the street from one another. 😊

      • I saw another post tagged Scottsdale, which is where I live. I suspect you’re a bit further north based on the open landscape beyond the fence, but I bet we’re close!

      • Nice! That’s a beautiful area. Spur Crossing is one of the prettiest hikes in the valley. I live down near Chaparral Park.

      • I am fairly new to the area and haven’t heard of the hike or your area. I’ll have to look up the hike. We have been hiking in the McDowell Sonoran Preserve.

      • McDowell Sonoran Preserve is beautiful! You might look up Spur Crossing Trailhead. It has a few paths, but one dips down to a creek, so there are full trees and a lovely breeze this time of year…I’ve been in Phoenix all my life, and it’s the only place in town that feels like a bit of an escape.

    • I’m with you on not being able to relax completely. But I dress very casual too. If it’s warm I’m in shorts and a tee shirt. Winter is sweatshirt and sweats.

  8. A difficult childhood is not easy to overcome, but you can pull out the good things, and carry those with you, like mung days, and the times when you knew you were deeply loved. Oh my, I am the queen of mung days. I often write from my bed, only getting up to refill my coffee. And then when I figured Larry would be coming home, I’d throw on some sweats, brush my teeth, and tidy up the kitchen as if I were a functioning human all day! Since we have both retired concealing my habit of writing in bed is not possible. Now he just saunters through the room every hour or so and makes derogatory comments, “Wow, half the day is wasted.” Or, “are you staying in bed all day?” Yes, I am. A refresher on my coffee would be great! Hug, C

    • I have many wonderful childhood memories and once in awhile the not so happy ones surface. I’m treating myself to a mung day when I get home. What a wonderful way to write from bed. I’m sure Larry appreciates what you do. He’s used to a different schedule and work environment. He’ll get used to it. When I was chasing a toddler with an infant in the “over the shoulder holder” my husband would come home from work and ask me what I’d done all day!

  9. Oh, a pajama day sounds good about now. Elizabeth, I can relate to having stories that I need to share, but have kept to myself so as not to be hurtful to others. It’s a strange feeling. They bring back happy and sad memories all at the same time. My stories have sat in my head or in unpublished stories for a long time, but I suspect I’ll publish them somewhere some day. The thing that matters most is your peace!

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