21 December 2010

The Reports of My Death Have Been Greatly Exaggerated

For months I've been wondering how I would get back into the swing of blogging things, considering I haven't blogged about anything substantial in, oh, half a year, depending on your definition of "substantial."  And as each month passes the more likely I am to put off the whole blogging thing because the more happens to me and the more I then have to write about.  Bonny, the ever helpful advisor, suggested I forget everything that's happened to me in the last six months--feign a coma if you will--and start afresh.  I may be lazy in some things, and by "some" I mean "almost all," but I cannot permit myself to do that.  What, deprive my vast reading public from reliving the minutiae of my days, allowing them to sadly shake their heads, and possibly, if I've done my job, fall on their knees and thank heaven above they're not me?  It ain't me, man.  

First off, apologies all around.  I just TODAY finally finished reading all of the blog posts that have been stacking up in my Google Reader since August.  Yeah.  over 500 posts at one point.  I'm sorry I haven't commented on, well, almost any of them, but I can at least now say I've read them all.  Whew.  Also, I've received several, SEVERAL inquiries into the status of my existence here on earth, mostly in the form of "OH MY GOSH DID YOU DIE??" followed thereafter by queries regarding my health, mental stability, and workload.  When none of my answers satisfy their curiosity as to why I quit writing, they berate/plead with/threaten me.  Yeah.  Like that's ever worked. 

Which brings us to our next point.  It is FOUR days until Christmas!  And you'll never guess what I don't have enough of!  FRICKING FLIPPIN SUGAR COOKIES.  Now, I've also been asked why the annual pleas/threats regarding Christmas cookies is so late in coming this year.  Well, I'll tell you.  For reasons beyond my understanding friends actually started bringing me cookies without the threats.  I know, right?  It blew me away, too.  So I've been munching on those.  However, my cookie numbers are waning and my mood is darkening.  I suggested to dear, sweet Jody that I might threaten to put my blog on hold until said cookies were forthcoming, but she pointed out that it's been on hold for six months as it is so it's not really much of a threat now, is it?  College-educated, that one.  

So here I am, pleading and threatening, but mostly threatening, that unless I start seeing some damn sugar cookies on my doorstep before Christmas is over, this blog will be nothing but cheap clip-art accompanied by a dull and witless description of it.  OH YES I WILL.  That, or the cat again, but honestly the cat threat didn't work as well last year.   Odd.  So clip-art it is.

Oh, hey, so I had a dream the other night that our next-door neighbors decided to build an outdoor amphitheater in their backyard, complete with roller-coaster.  The husband asked, "Are we even zoned for that here?" while I asked, "And why are they concentrating on this project when there's a fricking zombie apocalypse going on here?  We could all be eaten!  While on the roller-coaster!"  Yet, it didn't stop us from taking a tour just the same.  And then we turned into zombies.  THE END.


10 August 2010

A Little Too Cute

A note to all owners of yellow Hummers world-wide (and this is by no means based upon personal observation from this afternoon):

Painting an enormous Tweety Bird on the side of your Hummer kind of cancels out the supposed "cool factor" of this, your testosterone-choked car of choice. Just FYI.

12 July 2010

Happy Late Rebellion Day

Coulda sworn there was something I was going to write about today. Huh. Oh well.

Hey, do you read Epbot.com? You remember Cake Wrecks(.com), right? The creator, Jen, decided to start a personal blog for her personal thoughts on her not-so-personal website, epbot.com (epbot being a combination of Epcot--and if you don't know the Epcot reference, you don't read Cake Wrecks enough--and robot, something she's into). It's cute. Anyway, if you read that already then you've seen this. If not, then here it is.

As she said in her post, it gets a little odd at the end, but I can't stop watching it. It's just so well done. And I realize it's a little late, being that it's well after the Fourth of July at this point, but I wasn't in town on the 4th so here it is now (oh yeah! That's what I was going to write about! Well, later.).

I dare you not to watch this more than once. I DARE YOU!

Perhaps it's just me in a patriotic mood, or perhaps it was the entire "John Adams" series the Husband and I saw. (John Adams turns out to be one of the most influential founding fathers we had, but the history books were never kind to him and rarely gave him his rightful dues.) At any rate, I've been in the mood for Revolutionary War-era things lately and this fun video fit in nicely with that. Also, feel free to research the era on your own; it's a fascinating time period.

Happy late Independence Day, America. You rock.

16 June 2010

Dear Abby

Well at least it's been less than a month since my last post, so you can thank your lucky stars for that tonight.

So this is what I lay awake thinking about a few nights ago:



On a related note, after high school I worked for a Korean man who pronounced my name A.B. Yes, like the first two letters of the alphabet. And then I had a college professor who had, I'm assuming, NEVER heard the name Abigail before in his life, despite it being a biblical and popular name. The man could not pronounce it to save his life. So I begged him to just call me Abby (most professors just stuck with your given name and didn't care about your stupid nickname).

Also, in reference to the title of this post, here is what I get from every single person who has ever written me a letter or email for the first time:

Dear Abby,

Oh my gosh! I didn't even realize the connection between your name and that old lady who answers questions! How funny!

Every. Time.

Aren't you glad you waited for this?

20 May 2010

Just Write What You Know

So here's the last column I wrote for the parenting newsletter that I never sent in for publishing. I didn't think it worked as well as I wanted, plus there was some discussion about whether or not the parents in my neighborhood would be sufficiently appreciative of the subject matter. Hey, you never know.


I have a few friends who have expressed an interest in getting into the field of writing children’s books. The problem, they say, is writing a good enough story to get noticed in such a competitive field. Personally, I don’t see what’s so hard about it:

Fluffy Bunny raced down the green path through Happy Forest. The trees had never seemed so welcoming before. Fluffy was just about as happy as he could remember being in a long, long time. The parole board had granted his request and he was out of the pen on good behavior after serving only two years of a five year sentence for possession of illegal substances. His best friend and dealer, Silly Puppy, hadn’t been so lucky. He was still serving his 25 year sentence for distribution of illegal substances to minor woodland creatures. But Fluffy’s lawyer, Rabid Robin, had convinced the jury of furry animals that although Fluffy was certainly there when the meth lab blew, the D.A. couldn’t prove it actually belonged to him.

Rabid Robin had been there to welcome Fluffy upon his release from the hoosegow and they decided to meet up again for a celebratory drink afterwards.

“Thanks again, Rabid. You really did a great job back then. Can I buy you a shot?”

“Oh, no thanks, Fluffy. I’m still in AA you know--my sponsor would have a fit. I had that relapse back when Cheeky divorced me and I can’t afford to let him down again. Speaking of which, I’d like to officially apologize to you for being intoxicated during the majority of your hearing two years ago. Restitution you know.”

“No worries, Rabid. You did a-okay by me. I gotta run anyway. I’m meeting Adorable Kitty in an hour.”

“Your old cellmate? You better not let your new parole officer see you with that old trouble maker or you’ll be in big for it. Who did they give you again? Cuddly Squirrel, right? He’s one bad fellow, friend. You mess with him even one little bit, he’ll jack you up good.”

Fluffy thanked Rabid Robin for the warning and left. He stopped long enough to verbally harass his ex-girlfriend outside the diner where she was a waitress before the cook stepped out wielding a greasy spatula and a threatening look. Fluffy skipped along Happy Trail, hoping to avoid Main Street where he knew his P.O. was most likely to hang out. He ducked into a pawn shop off of Chipper Bird Drive and walked straight to the proprietor, who was none other than Adorable Kitty himself. A.K., as he was known to his friends, had been released three months prior after an appeals court found him not guilty of the first degree murder of eight judges. (Coincidentally, the judge who had initially sentenced Adorable had gone missing the day after his release from prison and was found floating in Joyful Pond two days later with a 9mm slug in her back. The police were positively perplexed.)

“Well if it isn’t the Meth Lab Muskrat! How’s my ol’ buddy these days? Have you had a chance to see Bubbly Chicken yet?”

“Yep, I just stopped by the diner to yell at her. She looks good. Angry, but good. I still can’t imagine why she issued that restraining order against me, but I’m sure with enough verbal and visual contact outside of 100 yards, she’ll come around. She still loves me, I know it. Loves me too much is all.”

“Yeah, I’m sure that’s it. So what mischief are you up for now that you’re out of the big house? There’s a new judge in town—something-or-other Raccoon. Finally convinced one to work here again, can you believe it? I’d like to get a look at his new digs. See what sort he is, you know? Up for a walk?”

“Nah, I’ve got a guy to see about a loan. Maybe later, huh?”

As Fluffy skipped toward Skid Row to meet the infamous loan shark who dressed like a 70s pimp, he felt good. Free. Happy. He had learned many valuable lessons during his 26 months in the clink. He had learned to value friendship, loyalty, and most of all what a pack of cigs on the inside will get you. He had learned to hoard food, make shivs, join the right gangs, make tats with a ballpoint pen, and bribe guards to the best of his ability. Yes, he had learned all this. And yet, he had learned so much more about his soul. He learned he’s happy being on the outside in Happy Forest, among his free friends, among good citizens who won’t shank him in his sleep for a slice of bread.

And he had learned to deny all knowledge of anything when that new Judge Raccoon turns up as a bullet-ridden floater in a few days.



Honestly, why would anyone object to that? Weird.

05 May 2010

So there.

If you don't think this is the cutest baby ever, then we can't be friends anymore.

29 April 2010

It's Not Easy Being Green

So while we're blabbing about Peawhistle, I figured I'd talk about her views on the supernatural. Now, I'm not a big fan of terrifying my children unnecessarily. Other people's kid, yeah, but not my own. I have to live with them after all. I still recall the many weeks when PW started getting out of bed at night because she was scared giants were going to come crashing through her window. It took many explanations to get her to believe that giants (as those in her imagination) do not exist outside storybooks. This is also why I've very strenuously asserted that things like ghosts, witches, vampires, etc. do not exist. I'm not prepared to get into a discussion about Wicca or modern-day vampire wanna-bes with a six-year-old, so I've just decided to make things simple by telling her they're all make-believe. She's on board with this and often remarks about how none of these things exist, hence why she thinks they're funny.

Not long after St. Patrick's Day, PW informed me that she thinks St. Patrick's Day is a stupid holiday. I asked why (before it was because she wanted a holiday named after her instead) and she said it's because she thinks St. Patrick was a leprechaun and she doesn't believe in leprechauns. This, coming from the kid who is all about living the Santa/Easter Bunny/Tooth Fairy lie. I explained who St. Patrick was, that he did indeed exist, and why the Irish/Catholics felt it necessary to give him a holiday. She was only vaguely satisfied with this, but she still clearly resents the whole affair.

PW just recently told me that she does not believe in elves. Not the wood-sprite kinda elves, but Santa's elves. Remember, she is an ardent supporter of Santa himself, but his elves? Screw them. They're not real. I asked her where the toys come from and she said they came from a factory, with a "Duh!" look on her face. You know, Santa's Factory, where Canadian minimum-wage workers crank out her favorite toys in between smoke breaks and quittin' time.

So let's review:

Santa Claus: real
elves: fake
Easter Bunny: real
Tooth Fairy: real
ghosts: fake
witches: fake
vampires: fake
leprechauns: fake
giants: ?
Saint Patrick: fake

So...anybody who willingly forks over toys, candy, or cash has to be the real thing. Everybody else can just go to hell. Fair enough.

21 April 2010

"Hey, Donkey...."

OK, here's my conundrum. Greta and I went to the movies the other night because we're awesome like that. Also, we're awesome for collapsing into bed the second we got to our respective homes at 11 p.m. (sucks getting old). Anyway, we went to see the new Steve Carrell/Tina Fey comedy "Date Night." I'll let Greta do the official movie review since it's her shtick; suffice it to say it was funny. It wasn't the most hilarious thing I've ever seen, but it was pretty darn funny. I'd watch it again, but I wouldn't own it--that funny.

So now to the conundrum. The best part of that whole fricking movie was Mark Wahlberg. And not only just Mark Wahlberg, but a shirtless, funny Mark Wahlberg. Now, I'm not normally ga-ga over movie stars. I'm not the fangirl type, you know? I appreciate actors for how well they do their jobs, period. If they happen to be easy on the eyes (most of them are), even better. But I'm not plastering posters of Matt Damon on the wall above my bed, you know (the Husband would likely object anyway)?

Oh, but Mark Wahlberg. This man puts me in a difficult situation. This is Marky Mark we're talking about here. That lousy rapper from the 90s who by all accounts should still be in jail right now. And please note that I said "still" because he was in jail. To use the term "punk" is playing it lightly with this guy. One website got it right when they called him "the biggest douche on MTV (no small feat)." He really was a piece of work. And no number of Calvin Klein underoos ads could have ever changed my mind.

Remember that idiot? Sure, we all do.

And this is what happy thoughts and a little pixie dust turned him into:

Smokin'-hot Oscar-nominated Mark Wahlberg, that's what. Now, I've seen Scorsese's "The Departed" (for which he was nominated), which won the Oscar for Best Picture in 2007. It's a fantastic movie. Not one for the kiddies though, what with all the people getting violently whacked and such (it is about the mob after all). Again, Mark-minus-his-Funky-Bunch had the best character in that film. Not just because he stole every scene he was in as a hardcore Boston cop, but because his whole job was to verbally abuse Leonardo DiCaprio, and who here hasn't fantasized about that at least once? Don't deny it. If you have the opportunity to watch the movie edited on TV, I highly recommend it.

So the problem is, I fully admit to having a crush on an actor. He's good at what he does too, which is part of the draw. But on the other hand HE'S MARKY MARK. How can I ever forgive myself? I can hardly face myself in the mirror these days, which fully explains my hair failure situation.

Anyway, lest we all think Mark is all seriousness and can't poke fun of himself, here's a favorite SNL sketch* about him:

Followed by his response:

Honestly, how can you dislike someone like that? Congrats to him for turning his crappy, worthless life around into something awesome and...awesome. Plus, he goes to church now. So maybe that'll keep him out of prison for a while.

And hey, say hi to your mother for me.

*These SNL videos won't play in Google Reader, only on the blog. So if you want to see them, you'll have to quit being lazy and actually click on my blog link.

14 April 2010

Dear God....

So there are several posts I've been meaning to write for, oh, months and months, but I've been putting them off because I forget about them when I sit in front of a computer. Or I don't care. One of those. Anyway, I thought I'd finally do one of them now. Hooray for you!

So Peawhistle. She says awesome prayers. Greta keeps reminding me of this and has suggested that I blog about it for a while, so here we are. I would like to mention at this time that Dear Sweet Greta willingly left her own family on Christmas Eve with no notice to come and babysit my kids (the Husband was nowhere to be found) so I could race SweetPea to the emergency room that night. SweetPea is better, but I can never repay Greta for her kindness and selflessness. Five cheers for Greta and her amazing wonderfulness!

Anyway, before Peawhistle started eating her dinner that night, she said grace. Or rather her version of such. See, long ago when PW was learning how to pray and such, I told her it was OK if she told God how her day went because I was sure He was interested in her life, etc. Since then, her prayers have never been boring as a result. It should also be noted that regardless how much I've tried to direct her prayers since then, I've failed. I've tried for months to get her to ask for a blessing on the food; she refuses and will only announce in her prayer that she approves of it. Whatever. For a while in school they were learning the Chicken Soup With Rice poems for the months of the year (which she only occasionally got right), and she would treat Heavenly Father to a recitation each evening at dinner and before bed (two-for-one!). Here's how her prayer went the night Greta heard it:

"Dear Henry Father, thank you for the day, I had a great day today. I love the food. Now I'm going to tell you a December poem. In December I will beeeeeeeee, a baubled babble Christmas treeeeeeee. With soup bowls draped all over meeeeeee. Merry once, Merry twiiiiiiiiiice...Merry chick'n soup with rice! In the Jesus Christ Amen!" (She will continue to scream AMEN until everyone in the house has said it also. It's annoying.)

Now, usually the rhyming words were accompanied by claps, or on days she felt like it, scary faces. That lasted up through December (I guess they stopped teaching the poems in school or something) and now she just uses prayer time to relive the highlights of her day, followed by an airing of grievances with me, her mother. I guess if you're going to complain about how you're being parented by your mom, the guy to go to is God himself. But this is still better than praying for Spider-man's safety, which she used to do when she was little (I guess he could use some prayers), or thanking God for SpongeBob, which I'm sure she still secretly does. And honestly, don't we all? Bless you, SpongeBob.

*I would like to add on PW's behalf that when I have a migraine she always prays that I'll feel better, and all without prompting in any way. She's a sweet kid.

08 April 2010

Stages of Pregnancy

Hey, remember when I used to write a humor column for the local parenting newsletter here? Yeah, well I stopped that. They stopped mailing it out to parents and started emailing it instead, so I called it quits. Writing the darn thing was too much effort to have it immediately sent to everyone's email trash. Take that, stupid environment-loving Technology!

So anyway, here's the last column I wrote for that, or at least the last one that I haven't posted here yet. I'll explain some things at the end, too, but obviously this is quite dated since it's about being pregnant. And I'm not anymore. Are we all on the same page now?


We are taught in school that there are three stages of pregnancy. My husband and I have survived all three stages, three times now. We will not be enduring them again after this time as our minds and bodies can’t live through it again. Let’s review these stages, shall we? It’s fun!

Stage 1: the Age of Puking.

Ah, nausea. My, my how you manage to take over and deaden the soul! I hadn’t had many problems with nausea with my first two pregnancies, but this last one was determined to be different. The worst instigator of my puking habits happened to be my toothbrush. The first time it happened I was merrily brushing my teeth when out of nowhere I puked in the sink. Now, how lucky was that, right? I mean, the sink was right there. And what is this? A toothbrush with toothpaste already on it?? Why, that’s exactly what I need after puking! Perfect! And I proceeded to brush my teeth again, only to throw up in the sink again. After the fifth or sixth time of this happening in a row, I began to notice a pattern (I do have a college degree after all!). And that’s when I begged, with nasty breath, that I be medicated to the best of my OB’s ability.

Stage 2: the Age of Prosperity.

Finally, your energy has returned, the puking medication is working on all fronts, people recognize you as pregnant rather than grotesquely obese, and your OBs are doing their best to inflict a heart attack as soon as possible. “You look great, Abby! Keep it up so you WON’T KILL THE BABY. Sure, yeah, you’re doing well just as long as you stay calm enough to NOT KILL THE BABY WITH YOUR RISING BLOOD PRESSURE. Why are you suddenly so upset? All you have to do is make sure you DON’T KILL YOUR BABY. Have a safe and NON-LETHAL DAY.”

This is also right around the time when your kids start to question you about where babies come from and why you and your partner would feel the need to introduce competition to them. I recall my five-year-old asking me one day who will take the baby out of my stomach once I got to the hospital. “The doctors will take her out.” “How will they take her out?” “With their hands.” “IN YOUR MOUTH?!?” and she laughed that hysterical, maniacal laugh she reserves just for me. While I was listening to her evil little laugh, it occurred to me that a baby coming out that end probably couldn’t hurt any more than the standard way we shove them out now.

Stage 3: the Age of Perpetual Senility.

I’ve come to look at this stage as being a window into the future of what I’ll be like 50 years from now. I’m but 33 at this moment, and yet I’ve already turned into a senile old woman who is suffering from complete and utter memory loss. The other day I got a phone call from a friend and she started out by saying, “So your mom’s coming to stay with you soon, huh?”

I gasped in amazement. “HOW did you know that??”

“Because you JUST sent me an email telling me that, like, two minutes ago, you dork.”

Sure enough, my email history did not lie to me, nor did my friend. “Oh, um, yeah, I vaguely recall that now (which is to say not at all).” Again, this happens frequently.

On several occasions I’ve gotten up in the morning, gone to the bathroom, looked in the mirror and declared with some shock and horror, “My GOSH I have really let myself go! When did I get so darn fat?!”, only to realize two seconds later that I’m in fact pregnant. I’m fairly certain I could be arrested for committing a multi-state armed bank robbery scheme and summarily convicted based upon numerous eyewitness accounts, plentiful DNA evidence, clear-as-day security video footage, and I wouldn’t have remembered a single second of it.

I’ve heard it said that our memories can only hold so much before non-essential information is expelled to make room for new data. This leads me to conclude that my baby is actually growing inside my skull, preventing any information from attaching itself to my brain at all. That huge lump on the front of my gut must therefore be the stores of fat that will see me through the long winter months ahead or something. Or at least that’s what the baby inside my head is telling me.


Many thanks to Stephanie for proof-reading this piece. Apparently I went on and on and on and on in one section and she very kindly told me it was getting boring. The end result was far better due to her very wise warning.

About the puking. It was bad enough that when I'd throw up all the capillaries in my face and neck would burst (called "petechia" I've just discovered), leaving my face and neck completely purple. No, I am NOT exaggerating. It would eventually fade after about four days, but it was so embarrassing I never left the house unless I was going to the hospital to be put on fluids (yeah--like I was going to leave the house looking like a giant hickey? No thanks). So it was bad, hence the medication.

There is one more piece I started to write for the newsletter before I decided to quit. The columns had to be short and this one just plain didn't work as a short piece, so I buried it. If I ever resurrect it I'll let you know.

31 March 2010

The Flattest Guest I've Ever Had

Dang, has it been a month already? Holy cow. Oh well.

Hey, so one of my friends has this nephew, see, and he's in grade school in Canada somewheres. His class is participating in the Flat Stanley Project where they mail out a Flat Stanley (based on the children's book), a journal, and see where he winds up before being shipped back home. So far Stanley has visited California, Arizona, Utah, Colorado, Texas, and Maryland (at right is a picture of him driving through Baltimore). Within the next week I will take Stanley to D.C. and to Arlington, VA.

Now, if any of you are familiar with the Canadian postal system, you know it is on par with that of a third world country. In fact, I'm fairly sure the "postal system" involves Canadians standing outside in a long line and just passing letters and packages between them. Therefore, Stanley has only about one more destination to make after here before he needs to be mailed back to Canada by the end of May.

The question is, where should he go? Is there anyone out there who would like to have Stanley in their home for a week to show him around? It doesn't have to be spectacular. One person just raked leaves with him, another took him on a school field trip. My friend took him snow tubing, and I have taken him sightseeing. Whatever floats your boat. You just write a couple of sentences about your town in the journal, maybe include a photo or two of Stanley doing something with you, and you're done.

So, would anyone like to have him for a week?

01 March 2010

Like Two Ships, Passing in the Night

I hope that if there's one thing you've learned from faithfully reading my blog, it's that the only way to go grocery shopping is in an unkempt, unshowered state of disarray. You do this, of course, because you have raced out the door as early in the morning as you can to avoid seeing anyone you know at the store. This guarantees that you will see someone you know at the store. Now, if the person you see is a good friend, you can feel free to mock that person openly and perhaps start taking things from their cart and surreptitiously moving them into your own to lessen your walk-around time at the store. However, if you barely know this person--say, an acquaintance from church who you've only had normal, polite, and very brief conversations with, and half the time you can't even remember her name, this is the person you will run into in your unshowered and hair-sticking-out-one-side state. Because of this, she will be dressed perfectly with nary a hair out of place. When you get home, you will also note with despair that you've been walking around with mascara flakes on your cheeks all morning. Perfect! Now let's shop!

I will now outline how to deal with this type of person whilst in the store:

1) Aisle the first: since she will see you first and alarm you with her presence, you will be caught off-guard to the point of being unable to recall her name until long after you've left the store. So a politely awkward "Oh! Hello...there!" will do just fine. Smile brightly as you quickly move on from one another to continue your shopping.

2) Aisle the Second: you run into Lady X yet again, and you realize with growing horror that you both are at the beginning of your shopping experience, you both move at an equal pace, and you're both shopping in the same aisles at the store. You now know that you will be seeing her in every aisle for the rest of your shopping day.

3) Skip aisles three and four in an attempt to get in a different pattern from your new shopping mate, only to note later that she's had the same brilliant idea.

4) Race through the dairy section to get ahead of her, only to nearly run over her offspring upon exiting at the yogurt wall.

5) Aisle the Fifth: Quickly formulate a reason to speak to her since it's becoming obvious you cannot avoid her to save your life, i.e., think of something to say to her, stupid. Again smile brightly, act normal for once, and say, "Soooooo...is your husband in the Army?" She seems delighted that you've saved the day, however briefly, by stabbing at the engulfing awkwardness with some attempt at regular conversation. "No, Air Force." "Oh, I see." 30 seconds of silence ensue while you realize that you failed to think of any follow-up questions to your newly invented conversation. You ask a few more fool questions before both of you tire of the made-up attempt at being friendly and you just sort of aimlessly walk away from her as she gratefully runs in the other direction.

6) See her scoot down Aisle Six, and slyly move to Aisle Seven, hoping to backtrack after she's left. When you go to turn against traffic to go to Aisle Six, be sure to ram into her cart going in the opposite direction. Apologize profusely while she assures you she's fine. Be half grateful you managed to find another excuse to say something a normal person would say, despite the fact it's becoming increasingly obvious to this woman that you're anything but normal.

7) Run to Meats, turn to see her coming, and grab as many random packaged beef products you can before she overtakes you. Run away.

8) Confident that you're now ahead of her, take your merry time down the bread aisle and make for your getaway at check-out, but not before yet again, nearly running into her on your way out. Smile ever so briefly while making as little eye-contact as possible. Her own motivation to fake a smile has vanished, and she pretends she no longer knows you. Totally fine with you.

9) Check out and run to your car. Pray for death before next Sunday.

17 February 2010

This Is Your Brain Exploding

See, most people would watch the following and think, "WOW. That is amazing!" And then there's me, who thought, "WOW. I'm going to vomit!" I'm clearly incapable of handling the greater picture. Shocker for most of you, I'm sure.

(half of this is cut off if you're look at my blog, so click on the video again to watch it full screen)

I think I have to go throw up my brains now.

Do you think this has anything to do with my gut-wrenching reaction to icebergs? (See, it's not the tops that freak me out so much--it's the bottoms that make me want to crap my pants.)

P.S. This commercial also makes me want to crap my pants, but in a totally funny way, not a creeped-out way.

01 February 2010

They're Baaaaaaaaack

I've been remiss in posting this story, mostly because I keep forgetting it until it shows up in my nightmares. So there's that.

Several, several months ago The Husband (and Melissa's husband as well, I later found out) was excited to watch one of his favorite programs on PBS (or MPT as it's know here), Maryland Outdoors, or Outdoors Maryland. Whatever. Something not inside. So anyway, he was all sorts of thrilled to get to watch it again, and judging by our TV schedule, it should have been on when he tuned to that channel. And yet, it wasn't on. What was you might ask?

The one, the only, Celtic Man. YES, that intrepidly stupid group of singing and assumedly drunken Irishmen who couldn't emote their way out of a paper bag. What are the odds that not only was The Husband's show not on as promised, but it was superseded by this, the most unintentionally entertaining musical group of all time?

Oh, but wait, it gets better! Not only was Celtic Man performing at that time, but at the very moment we tuned in, Creepy, Leering, Future Public Sex Offender Guy was singing. No, not his signature "Ride On" piece, but...wait for it...the man who looks every moment as if he's going to crack your skull open and eat his Coco Crispies out of it was singing "Every Breath You Take." NO, I CERTAINLY AM NOT KIDDING. The creepiest stalker singer on earth was singing the creepiest stalker song ever written. It's like he reads this blog and does it out of spite or something.

Don't believe me? It's right on their fricking youtube channel.

And for our added amusement, some totally random dancer dances on stage while he awkwardly haunts her from his perch. Why doesn't he just sing with a hockey mask on while he's at it? Now THAT I'd pay to see.

26 January 2010

It's the Little Things

I've been talking about this recently with friends and I decided I simply had to share it here. One of my favorite things in the world to do is yell at children. I am not kidding. It actually puts a smile on my face. I'm smiling just thinking about all the kids I've gotten to yell at within the past week. Does this make me a bad person? What are the odds I care?

Let me be more specific: I enjoy yelling at older children. I don't yell at young children. For one, it doesn't phase them, and when it does, all they do is bawl. And then I feel bad, which is the opposite personal reaction I'm going for. After all, the goal is to brighten MY day. I honestly am quite nice to the little ones (unless they're related to me, in which case all bets are off). I even politely and sweetly ask them to be kind to each other so Jesus will be happy and we can all feel happy warm thoughts and blah blah blah. See? I'm nice to little kids.

But older kids? The ones who know better? The ones WHO HAVE IT COMING? The ones I never liked even when I WAS a kid? Oh my goodness, there is nothing in this beautiful world that gives me greater joy than to point out, VERY LOUDLY that they DO know better and they TOTALLY have it coming.

Take church for example. You'd think with the bishopric and God and everyone staring at me that I would not take joy in yelling at the older kids. Oh, but you'd be wrong. Lisa wasn't in church this week. For some reason she makes me feel guilty for yelling at them. That's why I wait until she's gone. I always have to do it lots to make up for all the times she is there, so the Senior Primary got several heapin' helpins of my Very Loud Voice this past Sunday. I know you don't believe me, but I am still absolutely giddy thinking about it. I have so few true not-so-guilty pleasures in this life that I revel in them when I can get a hold of them.

Did I ever tell you about the best job I ever had? While I was pregnant with Peawhistle I had a job at our apartment complex's swimming pool as a Pool Chick. I tested the water, I checked pool passes, I cleaned the bathrooms, I cleaned the pool each morning. All OK tasks. But the thing that made it all worthwhile? You guessed it. Yelling at all the children. And boy, was I given many an opportunity to do so. Shoot, I even got to yell at ADULTS! A rare treat indeed! Now those jerks REALLY should have known better! I gave those individuals a taste of swearing thrown in to show my disdain for their stupidity. But yelling at the kids was the best part. And better yet, I got to yell at them with their parents right there! Can you even imagine my utter bliss?? It's like getting to yell at kids AND their parents at the same time! I defy you to name a better job than that!

So Lisa, thank you for missing church this week. I missed your funny self indeed, but with you gone I was allowed to engage in my favorite past time. And to Greta's husband, many thanks to you for giving me an excuse to yell at the not-so-little tots. BEST SUNDAY EVER.

21 January 2010

God Loves a Peanut

So it appears Stephanie was right, I was totally making everything up. OR SO SHE'D LIKE TO THINK.

I just got a call from Peanut's allergy doctor (well, one of them anyway). She said his endoscopy looked wonderful with nary a eosinophil to be seen. She also called with his latest allergy testing. Of every allergen he's come up positive for in the past, he is now negative for all of them except for cashews and pistachios. Milk and sesame didn't even register, while peanut has fallen below the positive allergen line. IT'S A CHRISTMAS MIRACLE. Seriously though, IT'S A FRICKING CHRISTMAS MIRACLE. Now, his doctor warned me not to get too excited and start shoving peanut butter down his throat. No problem, we don't have any anyway. She said people can test negative for something and still have a clinical reaction to it upon exposure. So we are to proceed as if he were still allergic to these things, avoiding them as much as possible. However, the likelihood of him actually dying now is pretty slim (well, for peanut, milk, and sesame anyway--gotta still avoid those tree nuts). Plus, he can still have serious GI reactions to these things, particularly milk, which is notorious for producing severe GI issues in the allergic crowd. But not LIFE-THREATENING issues, which is what has given us all ulcers for the past year and a half. He likely still has an oral allergy to apples and pears, and a GI allergy to soy, which sucks, but hey, we can live with that. So can he--literally.

So it would appear that he is outgrowing his life-threatening allergies, including very possibly cashews and pistachios, whose numbers have dropped since the last time. He's still young, things can still change, albeit very unlikely that they would, so we still have to be careful.

But do you have any idea what this means for us in the next few years? He will be able to go to church. He can go to the playground. He can touch a grocery cart handle. We can go out to eat again. He can go to a baseball game. He can sit with other kids at the school lunch table. He can have a cupcake at school parties. He can go on an airplane. He can visit my family. He can go on a mission. Someone will actually want to marry him. The deadly toxins they warned us he would not outgrow are disappearing. I can't even convey how happy I am right now. I'm so relieved I could cry and feed my kid peanut butter. Well, maybe just the first one.

19 January 2010

Yes, Master

Last night I dreamed Morgan Freeman and I were super tight friends. Or at least I thought we were, despite the fact he was thoroughly convinced my name was "Igor."

See? Tight.

16 January 2010

Is This Thing On?

The following conversation just happened this evening. No joke.

Me: Peawhistle, please finish cleaning up the toys so I can get you a quick bath before bed.
Peawhistle: OK Mommy.

[five minutes later she comes upstairs]

Me: OK kiddo, go brush your teeth, pee in the potty, but don't put your PJs on yet because I need to give you a bath first.
PW: What?
Me: Brush your teeth. Pee in the potty. Don't put on PJs.
PW: But I thought I was going to have a late bath.
Me: You ARE. That's why I don't want you to put on pajamas yet.
PW: No pajamas?
PW: [blank stare]
Me: Go!
PW: (pause) Am I having a late bath?

This went on for some time so I'll spare you the incredible tedium. But MY GOSH. At least this wasn't as bad as this afternoon when the following occurred:

Me: OK PW, what do you want for lunch?
PW: [blank stare]
Me: PW, what do you want for lunch?
PW: [blank stare]

Kid you not, she stares at me like I'm speaking Elfish; she's utterly fascinated that I'm trying to communicate with her, but there is ZERO comprehension on her end.

This is an all-day thing and my head hurts just from trying to interact with her so I don't even know how to end this, so I'll just stop typing. There.

*Oh, and I apologize for re-instituting word verification. I'm getting sick and tired of all the spam I've been getting lately and having to go back and delete it. So I'll just torture you all instead, cool?

13 January 2010

The Medical Wonders

Being old really sucks. I think of things that happen all day and say, "I could totally write a whole blog post about that." And by the time I get to the computer I've completely forgotten about it. So it's not my fault I never post.

Peanut had an endoscopy yesterday. All went well, but when that kid came out of the anesthesia, boy was he P.I.S.T.-MAD. He glared at everybody for a good hour. This, coming from my happiest kid with the perpetual smile on his face. He was most concerned about the needle stuck in his hand, which he kept trying to cover up. He also refused to use that hand for hours afterwards, like it was broken or something. Weird kid.

Right before the procedure he took part in a medical study for allergies and eosinophilic esophagitis (which they think he has--again). So for participating in the study he got an awesome Fisher Price dump truck. The one toy this kid doesn't have, too. What were the odds? And we got free parking. Woohoo! Good times all around.

So after the procedure while Peanut was scowling at everyone, the GI doctor came out and started talking to me about what went on and asked for his history and blah blah blah. He stopped me about halfway in and asked me if I was a nurse. I, not being one, did not lie. He said, "Wow, you really sound like one. You know a lot about this stuff." I've heard on more than one occasion that when you kid has a condition, you have to make yourself an instant expert on it. Just further proof that I'm an excellent mother. I don't care what CPS says.

Speaking of mothering, remember when Peawhistle scared the crap out of me and the drama of the ambulance ride, ER visit, etc.? Guess what? SHE FRICKING DID IT AGAIN. No, not the trip to the hospital, but she did pass out again (sort of). This time I managed to catch her on the way down, so no career-ending Steve Young-esque concussions for her. So last week she had a really loose tooth. I'm always scared she'll swallow the darn things in her sleep so I told her I was going to take it out before bed since the gross thing could bend at a 90 degree angle in her mouth. I popped it out, she whined, she started fussing about, "Ew, the blood! I don't like the blood in my mouth!" so I told her to wash her mouth out with some cold water and come back to bed. She did so, came back, and promptly fell limp. And freakier than that, she never closed her eyes, she just lay there, completely stiff, teeth gritted, shaking like crazy. And then she stopped, I asked her if she was OK, and I stuffed her in bed while I conferred with The Husband. She was feeling back to normal after a half hour or so, so we decided against any ER visit and I decided to tell her doctor on Monday. Dr. Guilt Trip was supremely interested in this turn of events, especially after I informed her that prior to the first episode, she had lost her second tooth not 5-10 minutes before she collapsed in the parking lot. Two collapsing episodes following two tooth losses? Surely more than a coincidence (take that new, younger, creepier Sherlock!). Her doctor thinks that because the stiff/shaking episodes were so brief (probably only 5-10 seconds at most) that they weren't seizure related, but rather post -something-something-effect (darned if I can remember what she said) related to fear of blood, almost as if she's locked in fear rather than just passing out. We have to call the doctor if she does it again and it's NOT related to teeth loss or blood of course.

I don't get this. This is my blood 'n' guts girl. She is scared of nothing gross or icky. I was convinced she could have been an EMT with her talk of body parts, bones, blood, guts, etc. She falls down or hurts herself and she merely brushes it off and continues to play. The girl laughs at the very thought of zombies, monsters, and witches (I've tried to encourage that frame of mind actually). And here she is, freaking out over two drops of her own blood in her mouth?? To the point of passing out on me? And she's only lost three teeth so far. My gosh have we got a long way to go. She better hope I'm around when she loses another one or we're going for another trip in an ambulance I fear.

06 January 2010

The Age-old Question

If there's one thing you know I am, it's a follower! So the fact that everyone else is making resolutions this week, despite the fact that resolutions repel me, I will indeed jump on the bandwagon.

I have but one resolution: to remember how old I am.

Sounds easy, right? For you, yes. For idiots like me, not so much. For the past five years or so (something like that anyway--years confuse me) I have not been able to produce my age when asked. When I do blurt out an age, it's always off by a year or two, hence why I usually just avoid that pothole.

Questioner: And how old are you ma'am?
Me: [blank stare]
Q: Your age?
Me: Uh...lemme think a minute.
Q: [incredulous glare]
Me: JUST GIMME A MINUTE. [fruitless pause] Do you have a calculator?

I usually wind up throwing out my birth year and making them do the math on their own. And then they usually tell me my age as a kindness.

Remember when you were a kid and your age was everything? You weren't just 7, you were 7 5/8. You were 9 in 34 days and two hours and 15 minutes. Now I couldn't tell you how many months/days until my birthday if you paid me. I don't even remember my birthday's approaching half the time. Fun fact: my brother and I share a birthday. I remember either his birthday or mine, but never at the same time. My friend, Misty, has to email me a week in advance every year (which she does, the dear) to remind me my brother's birthday is coming up. What I'm saying is, it's all very sad.

I tried to think how old I am just now and I failed by a year. Resolution success already!