Category Archives: I OUGHTTA WRITE A BOOK

AND THE AWARD FOR “WORST WIFE EVER” GOES TO…

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ME!

Yesterday was my 32nd wedding anniversary.

And how did we spend it you ask?

Pretty much like how we have spent the last 32 years…Scott was gone when I got up, came home for a couple of hours (brought me flowers, pizza, cheesecake and donuts) and then when it came time for me to “die to self” and do something nice for him,  I dropped the ball.  I had told him that my gift to him was that I would go with him to the trade show we are doing and help man the booth for five hours.

WHAT WAS I THINKING?

I could no more sit and make small talk with hordes of people who I am hoping will buy something from us, than I could run a quarter-mile (actually I would do the quarter mile more readily because it would kill me faster).

So instead he ended up taking a neighbor lady and I stayed home and ate pizza and watched TV.   At least I was up when he got home (which depending on what his schedule is may or may not happen that often) and we sold a bookcase and a Wannigan.  (A wannigan is a box that fits into a canoe and holds your gear or food or whatever.  We make stands for them so they can be used as side tables or coffee tables and come in small, medium and large….two large and the small are shown….mediums are sold out as of today)

As unusual as our marriage may seem to others, it works for us.   I think one of the fastest ways to destroy your marriage is to look at other marriages and compare yours to their’s.   We went through that for many years but once we decided to just focus on what works for us, we are much happier.

Scott has a tremendous gift for serving others.  And I am so blessed daily by his gifting.  He also allows me to be “me” and if you know me or follow my adventures on this blog, you will understand how much patience and understanding he has!  He also has come to realize and laugh about my complete and total lack of common sense.  (An example: The day that we set up for the trade show, we had to take two vehicles and I had to follow him into Duluth to the DECC since I had no idea as to where to go.  No problem there…followed him right up to the unloading zone.  He brought me right up to where we were to set up while he and some guys hauled everything in.  Then he had to go move our vehicles to the parking area.  Took us five hours to set everything up and by that time I was a little “pain drunk” and couldn’t wait to get home so I wasn’t really at my best brain function.  So Scott showed me where my car was parked and he went back into the place to bring back a cart.

SIDE NOTE: my car is slowly falling apart and Scott has no time to fix it and since I am a semi-recluse it really doesn’t matter too much UNTIL I go to use it and I find out that:

A: the hood is wired shut since someone did not shut it properly and it flew up and smashed the windshield while going 70 plus mph (had I been driving, I would not be here to tell the tale as I do not do well in most emergencies…I scream, I call out to Jesus, I shut my eyes, and I slam on the brakes)

B:  Since the hood incident, the lights on the dashboard suddenly go out leaving you literally in the dark as to how fast you are going, how much gas you have,  and everything else the gauges tell you.  Plus, the lights go out on the gear stick thingy so you don’t know what gear you are in.  Oh, and the brights don’t work and you can’t get to the windshield wiper fluid holder since the hood is wired down and the windows are really dirty.

C:  the same person who did not properly shut the hood also has a tendency to not shut the hatch-back door all the way so as you drive the rear roof light keeps popping on.

Ok, back to my example…..so I leave the parking area only to discover that the way I thought we came in has two huge red-lettered signs proclaiming NO EXIT and cars are coming IN and I am attempting to go OUT.  So I panic and make a quick U-turn in front of the oncoming cars and see a small sign that says EXIT so I follow that past a huge empty parking lot and I come to a place to get out but it has those guard arm things and I have no ticket to put in it to make them open up.   So I backup, which is not easy when your hatchback window is filthy and the damn light keeps popping on and I make for the empty lot to sit and figure out how on earth I am going to get out of this place and thank God I don’t have to pee (every woman reading this will totally understand that statement!)  Suddenly a truck drives by headed to the arm-guard exit and I watch them stop and the arm goes up and I wonder if they had the magic ticket or not, so I drive back up there and cautiously pull up to the arm and EUREEKA it opens up and I am free!!!!  Had that truck not come by, I would still be sitting there because I follow the rules so I would never have tried to go out the NO EXIT place since there were people in those little booths to see me and had I had the four-wheel drive vehicle I may have, in frantic desperation, gone over the curb and ground next to the arm-guards but in my already fragile-bodied Matrix, I knew better than to attempt that!  I am ditzy, not stupid!

So now I am tooling down the freeway hoping that I am going somewhere near the speed limit, that I have enough gas to get home, that the roads are dry so no one splashes more dirt on my windshield cause I am having to look between the smear marks as it is and that flippin’ light in the rear keeps popping on and off and it is driving me cray-cray so I get off the freeway and pull over and jump out of my car to go and close that stupid hatchback door and for one heart-stopping moment I wonder if I accidentally locked the car door (I’m afraid it would not be the first time) and there I would be….stranded in the dark and cold….no phone….no money, too much in pain to be able to walk anywhere and you know I would instantaneous have to pee…..but God in His mercy allowed my brain to function and I had not locked the door!

So back on the freeway I go….letting everyone pass me so I know I am within the speed limits, hoping I was in Drive and not 2nd and trying to see the few feet in front of me that my dirty low beams were allowing me, praying there were no gangs of punk teenage deer egging each other on as to who could dash out in front of a car and make it across the road.. I know they do this because everyone I know has hit one or more of these juvenile delinquents and we all have the dents on our vehicles to prove it!

Finally I pull into my driveway and I realize that I have driven both to town in the daylight and back home on the lit freeway with two child-sized mannequins seatbelted next to me in the front seat and no one gave them a second look, not even the cop who drove towards me during the day.   I then wondered how many people get into accidents with mannequins and how freaky that must be for the rescue folks and if I was happy not to have had an accident or a bit bummed cause it would have been kinda cool to see how the cops would have reacted to seeing two blonde plastic kids on the road dressed in winter and summer clothes (see….this is how I think and my husband knows this and still loves me and is rarely afraid to go to sleep at night eventhough you never can be sure what might be in store for him when he awakes!)

So I had to take a photo of them:imageBut my winter kid had it’s hat over it’s eyes and so in the dark I pulled it up and took another photo and when I looked at it, it scared the crap out of me!

imageTheir heads are NOT moveable and I swear it was looking right at me…..so I left them in the car for the night, hoping my mailman would not have any packages for us, since he often leaves them in our car if we don’t hear him beep for us to come out to his car.   I’m not sure if he would have been surprised or not, since you can imagine all the weird things he has delivered to me over the years….but I will save that for another blog post!

So next time you see my husband, give him a pat on the back and tell him he is is true saint and God bless him for staying married to me for all these years!

I LOVE YOU SCOTT HENRY!

Your Queen,

Robyn

 

2015 AND OFF TO A ROCKY START

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I have now come to the absolute conclusion I have no business being alive in this technological age.

I should have known.  You can’t spend your youth carousing and losing critical brain cells to the siren call of White Russians and expect there not to be consequences down the road.

Perhaps if I had jumped on that Super Highway back when it all began I might have had some hope but alas, I had no interest in “The Net”.  Surfing the World Wide Web.  Donkeys, Pac men, bouncing balls pinging back and forth.  I could have cared less who made it and who didn’t on The Oregon Trail.  I wasn’t going to fall for that “tool of Satan”, that portal for the government to spy on me when I was sleeping.  Hah! I was too smart for all that.

Ya, well here I am decades later trying to survive in a world that insists on everyone conducting every aspect of your life via the internet and I am failing miserably.  This has never been more apparent as I try to navigate the intricacies of trying to find and to file for permits, numbers, papers, and all manner of hoops to jump through in starting a business.  Why would anyone in their right mind allow me to even turn a computer on let alone give out critical, personal and potentially damaging (if it should fall into the wrong hands) information?   I can’t even send a scanned timesheet without it somehow arriving crooked (can I get a big, “Amen” Shelby?).  So how did I end up in this position?  Boy am I glad you asked.  Grab yourself a drink while I chug down another shot of NyQuil to try to kill the beast between my eyes that is intent on ravaging my sinuses.

My husband has wanted his own business since I have known him and I guess the Lord has determined that now is the right time.   It is an established business with two employees (that is a whole nother blog) but it is part of a bigger enterprise so we are somewhat starting fresh.  Make sense?  Ya, me neither.   I am too sick to even begin to try to explain how we got here but anyway my husband asked me what part I wanted to play in this business.  Was my first thought, “Oh gee honey, I have always wanted to be a part-time bookkeeper, payroll clerk, file gal, tax person, phone answerer, invoicer, banker, and all around icky job doer”?   Hell NO!   I wanted to be DIRECTOR OF DESIGN.  I wanted to spend  hours on Pinterest finding new and quirky ways to use our products and to finally have minions to do all the work of taking my design ideas and bringing them to life!  I WAS BORN FOR THIS JOB.

I must have been born too late cause I guess that job is already taken.

So the question my husband should have asked me was, “How much of the mundane, hard to understand, boring, left-brain stuff can you handle before you pop a neuron” part of this business do you want?

For no pay.  For no cute office to decorate.  For no cute office accessories.  We moved the piano (neither one of us plays piano but maybe someday agrandkidmight) to the already crowded living area so we could put a desk up on the living level and put the desktop computer there.  I had visions of making that area so funky with hanging antique screen doors to make it seem like a “real” office space and an old vintage green funky file cabinet.   Nada….zip…zilch….

boring desk space

boring desk space

And kiddies, we haven’t even gotten to the really fun part yet….all the jargon that once I actually find the site on the internet that I need, I start to try to fill out the form, that is IF I can get the form to come up.  We bought a refurb laptop to use for just the business….OH MY GOSH…..there have been things that I have had to do eventho I had to crawl out of my deathbed to get them done, that trying to do them on the laptop, on my lap (first mistake….laptop does not mean YOUR lap top) and since I am so used to my iphone and my ipad, I am poking furiously at the screen trying to get something to work when of course, it ISN’T touchscreen but that little black square that I can never get to work right.  Scott did get me a mouse but the laptop takes up the whole lap desk that I have little room to manuever the mouse.

After trying to make a damn invoice for over two hours on it (I hate Quick Books, it is not quick, I am not quick….I want a program for the Computerly Disabled….I am talking BARE BONES people…..ACCOUNTING FOR THE ADVANCED STUPID….) I had just about finished it and I hit the backspace button and I LOST IT both literally and ….never try to do something you suck at when you are in the best of health while running a fever….it was ugly…ugly….

I am thinking I may have to find a job so we can pay someone to work in the “office”.

I think I need some ice cream……

JUST A LITTLE UGLY (PART 3) THE REST OF THE STORY

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As soon as we left the reception both little girls fell asleep in the car.  Poor Lola’s head kept trying to kiss her knees and I would ask the 4yr old to please push her head back up as I thought that has to be uncomfortable!

Never tell a 4yr old brother to push his sister’s head as he held it as he does a ball and went for a slam dunk!  “Gently”, I cried as her head was flung back against her car seat

But alas, it wasn’t 10 seconds later that it was back in that awful position.

And it wasn’t 15 seconds later that the 4yr old scored another 2 points….

By now, I figure it has to be better for her to hang over like that than to risk a TBI from her brother trying to help.

Because of my extreme stress and exhaustion, I was a tad loopy and I began to tell my husband how mad I was that I wasn’t picked for “Employee of the Month” seeing that this was my last month with the company for the summer and that I was a dang good employee and how hard I had worked, etc. etc.  I was almost in tears.  He looked at me and said, “You blew the whistle on them for not paying overtime and you expect to be Employee of the Month”?

He had a point there….

I started to laugh, and laugh, and laugh….you know the kind….kinda maniacal, not being able to stop, snorting and gasping for breath….dang it felt good!

So good that I thought a trip thru the drive-thru at Culvers was in order.  Me and Jack got a dish of chocolate frozen custard and we even tried to adjust Lola to make her more comfortable but no way was she not going to scope out her knees.  Why don’t they make some kind of headrest for car seats?  Or do they and we just didn’t have one?

We are driving home into the sunset and I turn around to look at Jack and he has chocolate custard on his face, his white shirt, his pants and he looks at me and gives me one of his beautiful smiles that light up his eyes and he says, “I AM HAPPY”.

What more can a grandparent want than to make a grandchild happy?  That picture of him will stay in my mind for the rest of my life (and the chocolate is probably in his new white shirt for that long, too).

We had been planning on bringing the kids to our house and daughter would pick them up but I had the brilliant idea that since we had the key to her house, why didn’t we just bring them home and put them to bed?  Duh….

Well, you know the old saying, “Best laid plans of mice and men….”

Lola never woke up and so she was placed on the couch (I did not want to risk waking her up to change her into her jammies and try to put her down into her crib).

Jack was happy just being with Grumpa so we let him stay up (can never get enough hours with that boy!)

And what about Baby?  Oh yes, baby…..

There is a plaque that says, “IF MOMMA AIN’T HAPPY, NOBODY IS HAPPY”,  well that should have read, “IF BABY AIN’T HAPPY NO ONE ELSE IN THIS HOUSE IS GONNA BE HAPPY EITHER”.

She probably needed the arms and other parts of her momma and she was only not crying when someone was holding her and walking.  She had gone from weighing 19# to 50# or more and neither Scott nor I had the back strength to keep holding and walking her.  I had never seen my husband HAVE to sit down.  He could no longer stand up.  But the cries of Baby were too much for Grandma and she pleaded with Grumpa to please, please make Baby happy or Grandma was going to have a serious breakdown and he was going to have to hold Grandma and Baby.

Well, the thought of having to hold Grandma, gave Grumpa super human strength and he was able to lift Baby to ceiling and back which delighted Baby but made 4yr old want “his turn” and Grumpa can never say no and mustered up every bit of “old man” strength and gave little Jack his turn and thankfully in walked the momma!

Baby happy.

Grumpa happier and he got to put Jack to bed..Jack happy

Grandma happiest.

Good night, Grumpa.

Good night, Grandma.

Hear Grumpa snore.

Snore, Grumpa, snore.

See Grandma toss and turn.

See Grandma flip and flop.

Poor Grandma, no rest for the wicked…

4am…see Grandma finally fall asleep.

8:30am….See cows gone.

Run, cows, run.

Grandma can not believe this is happening…..

ps.  No matter how tiring it can be watching our grandbabies we would not change a hair on their little chinny, chin, chins.  We love them more than our life (and backs!) And will drop everything to be able to be with them….no matter where or for how long!

Grandchildren are the “gold” in our Golden years!

LITTLE BIT UGLY (PART 2)

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LOLA FINDS PIN

LOLA FINDS PIN

LOLA THINKS OF FUN THINGS TO DO WITH PIN

LOLA THINKS OF FUN THINGS TO DO WITH PIN

BABY SINGS THE BLUES

BABY SINGS THE BLUES

HAPPY JACK

HAPPY JACK

Now where did I leave off???

Oh yes, THE RECEPTION

Get to the reception and of course there is the perfunctory wait for the bridal party to get to the joint and so the grands do what all children do….they play with whatever is available.  In this case, it was the table decorations…those little glass stones that are the size and shape of Junior Mints.

The 2yr old has a fixation with putting things in her mouth and even tho I told her that the stones DO NOT go into our mouth, she had to assert her independence.  She took a stone and slowly rubbed it against her cheeks and then down to her chin and back up to her cheek, all the while looking at me with a bemused expression.  I was not born yesterday and have played this “game” with her before and it always ends the same.  POP….into her mouth goes the stone.

I had warned her that if she put a stone into her mouth, the mean Grandma was going to take all the stones away, which I did.  Not a happy child.

Spies fake silverware and decides that the serrated knife might be nice to stick down her throat and promptly grabs her knife and mine and like a circus side show performer, attempts to swallow the knife.  Bad Grandma whisks both knives away and then she brings out her favorite tactic…..THE FACE.

THE FACE is where the mouth turns down and the bottom lip comes out and the eyes are downcast…..THE FACE works on Grumpa but not on the meanest Grandma in the world.  Plus, she had an audience of older folks who melt like butter for THE FACE.

Knowing that explosive tears and great wounded sobs will follow next, I quickly offer her my spoon to gag herself on.  In an instant, THE FACE turns into SUNSHINE SMILE and the other folks at the table burst into amazed laughter.  I am immune as I once worked with hundreds of preschoolers during my 10 years with the county in their daycare centers.  Okay, that’s a lie…..after all I am a Grandma!

Maybe some punch will help pass the time….what was I thinking?  I got each child a glass of the  pink punch being careful to only fill each cup a third full.  How much of a mess can a tiny bit of punch make?

I had forgotten the Law of Toddlers….whereby the amount of mess made by a toddler is determined not by the materials given but by the degree of embarrassment said mess will cause parent.   I turned to look at Baba and when my head swung back, there was a pink pool all over the end of the table, dripping down onto the creamy white and pink tulle dress and onto the floor (which was right next to the serving tables….of course..it’s part of the Law of Toddlers).  My already frazzled nerves shorted out and I made a mad dash to the kitchen to see if I could procure a towel to sop up the pink flood.

Now I must add that during this whole time, Baba had wanted me to go and take a photo of the wedding cake on her cell phone.  She was insistent that she get a photo of the cake before it was cut (the wedding party had not even gotten there yet, so I think I had time…..) so as I am sopping up the spilled punch, she is shoving her cell phone at me telling me which buttons to push…Oh she pushed some buttons, all right!  I can think of only one other time in my life that I snapped at her but every nerve in my body was twitching and sparking and her pushing that phone at me made me SNAP.

After I had gotten the mess all cleaned up, I apologized.  I do not know how she got photos of the cake, but she did!  Talk about strong-willed…I see where my granddaughter gets it from!

Finally the wedding party arrives!  Glory be!  Let’s eat…..

But no….we are to play a trivia game….the emcee will ask each table to guess the answer to a question about the bride and groom….table after table goes by….I am now beyond all help.  I snap a selfie…it frightens me…I send it to FB.

Emcee comes by our table and calls out a question.  I yell out the answer (the questions had been asked at one of the bride’s showers so I knew the answer).  Emcee debates if I have given  a detailed enough answer.  Takes one look at my face and says, “OK folks, you can go and eat”.  Smart, smart man.

Looking over the food, I see nothing that 2yr old will eat.  Pile plate with food for me and 4yr old.  Whip out PB&J sandwich and chips for 2yr old.  Try to put some lasagna on 4yr old’s plate….they did not let the lasagna “set” so it is one long cheese blob that refuses to be cut.  PB&J for 4 yr. old.

Baby decides it’s time to  sing the blues and Grumpa takes baby outside.

Grandma’s face has started to twitch…Grandma forgot to take meds before leaving house.  Blood pressure must be sky high….can hear blood pumping in ears….

Stroke, Grandma, Stroke

Helpers start to clear food from serving tables.  Grumpa has not eaten so Grandma limps out to find him and sad baby.

Grandma sits outside with baby who is only happy if Grandma is standing.  Now Grandma is singing the blues.

Hear the wedding speeches starting….when did weddings start having whole bridal party tell stories of bride and groom?  What happened to a toast from the best man and that was it?  Grandma longs for the “good old days”.

Grandma can hold baby no longer so she hobbles back in holding baby which now needs a diaper change.

Grandma takes baby and a diaper and wet wipes and tries to find somewhere to change stinky baby.  Spies an empty room. Where to change baby?   Debates if it is wrong to put stinky baby on table since she neglected to bring something to lie stinky baby on.  The welfare of others wins out and Grandma sees a couple of stacked chairs and plops baby on seat of chair.  Baby barely fits and bumps head each time Grandma wipes stinky bottom goo.  Baby good to go.  Grandma sets baby on carpeted floor and runs out of room to men’s room next door to pitch stinky diaper.  Baby is happy on floor so Grandma sits down and takes off boots…ahhhhh.

Happy Grandma.

What is that face baby is making?  OH NO!  Baby is making stinky goo again.  No, baby, no….not again.

Grandma wishes the Rapture would happen so she would not have to put back on her boots, struggle to get off floor, (Hear Grandma grunt), lift baby, stumble back to table, grab another diaper,  carry baby back to room and repeat the above process.  It is just too much for Grandma to handle.

Hear stranger with young child waiting for bathroom.  Lean way over and call out to stranger, “Hey, can you help me?”   Woman gingerly comes to doorway, sees poor Grandma sitting on floor with boots off and is willing to go find Grumpa to come and bring diaper and rescue Grandma.  Inexplicably she leaves young daughter with Grandma….must figure Grandma would never get boots on before she got back and so child will not be abducted.  Returns with diaper bag but no Grumpa.

See Grandma cry.

Change, once again, stinky diaper.  Grandma contemplates just laying on floor until someone finds her but baby is not happy anymore.

By now Grandma has decided that she is calling it a day, and if daughter wants children to stay for dance, she will have to just keep them there herself.  Grandma is not even sure she has the strength to drive home.  May just die in car.

Back at the table, while waiting for Grumpa to return from where ever he went, the 2 yr. old has discovered a very long, very sharp, corsage pin in the bottom of her bouquet. Her face lights up like a lamp was shone on it!

Grandma reacts quickly and a trip to the ER is avoided. But one of Grandma’s mammary appendages has been injured in the process.

Ouch, Grandma, Ouch

Grumpa returns and Grandma tells him that she has had it and is leaving with or without him.  Grumpa says he will take 4yr old and find daughter to find out what she wants to do.  Good idea, Grumpa!

5 minutes go by

Baby fussy

10 minutes go by

Baby really fussy

15 minutes go by

Grandma is in a state of shock as she sees Grumpa playing his accordion and the Emcee announces it’s time for some live music.

Last time anyone will see Grumpa alive…

Grandma decides to leave with children.  Grumpa can hitch a ride home with daughter.

Grumpa makes it to vehicle just as it is being loaded up.

Run, Grumpa, Run

And this is where we are going to end for now!  Grandma is wiped out from working all night and must take a nap!

Please join me later this weekend for Part 3 of JUST A LITTLE BIT UGLY

But I will leave you with photos from the wedding and reception……

 

 

JUST A LITTLE BIT UGLY

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Well we are into day two of this holiday weekend and by some cruel twist of fate, I have aged 20 years and with two days still to go, by Monday night at 11:59pm I should be ancient.

What has caused this rapid aging?  Oh, I am so glad you asked…

Our bestest friends had a daughter get married yesterday and our daughter was in the wedding….sounds good, right?  No stress. Nothing to age about….except…..

Our daughter has three wonderful, darling, smart, gorgeous, above exceptional children (like all grandbabies, right?) and a husband who just started a new position so his time off that he had requested was null and void….this is where it gets interesting…

On Friday, our daughter wanted to go and do “bridesmaid” stuff and my husband and I were beyond thrilled to watch all three little ones.  Did I mention how little?  A very inquisitive 4 year old, a “independent” 2 year old, and a very chubby 8 month old who is just starting to be weaned.  Momma drops off the babes even before this granny got home from work….oh, ya…did I forget to add that I had worked all night?

We had a wonderful day…grandpa put the two older ones in the garden cart and like a man working for tips, ran them all over the property.  Took them to visit the cows and play in the water trough and then they played games outside.  Grandma was in charge of the Michelin man baby.  Who knew that a baby gets heavier and heavier as the day goes by and that fat, old grandma’s arms get weaker and weaker?  A small reprieve by laying with said baby when baby naps surrounded by pillows and giant teddy bears so just in case Grandma nods off, baby won’t roll off bed and bounce around room.  I don’t know about any other grandparents but when our grands are here we are slaves to their various whims, make twenty-seven different things to try to get them to eat something, become human toys and carnival rides but by the time momma came to pick them up, Grandma was drooling and running into things and Grumpa was nursing an aching back.  But our hearts were happy and full.

Saturday:  Daughter has to be at wedding home at 10am and so three, energetic cherubs bound in at 8:30 am.  Now Grandma had to be up by 6am to get ready for the wedding day as she knew that once the troops came there would be no time.   So grandma is all coiffed and make up is spackled on when babes arrive.  At breakfast table grandma mentions to Grumpa that the 4 yr. old and the 2 yr. old keep looking at her as they don’t often see grandma in “full glamour” mode.  So dear Grumpa says to 4yr. old, “Doesn’t Grandma look pretty?” and sweet child says to me, “Grandma, you are very pretty”.  But instead of just saying Thank You, I have to push the envelope and ask, “Are you saying that just to be nice or do you really think Grandma is pretty?”   Sweetness pours out of that rosebud mouth, “I’m just saying that to be nice”.   So I add salt to my wound by asking, “Do you think Grandma is ugly???”    That little pie hole opens up and “Yes, Grandma, I think you are a little bit ugly” comes tumbling out of it.

NEVER as a child for the truth if you don’t have the cojonies to hear it!

I see I failed to mention that we were in charge of the three babes for the whole day which meant we had to make sure they were all fed and cleaned up and brought to the wedding place early because the older two were in the wedding.  I have now learned that trying to contain and control three young children is like trying to contain water in a colander.  I swear each one had at least three Doppelgangers….

Having been a mother and knowing that children cannot go for long periods of time without eating, I packed up a thermal bag with peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, fruit snacks, chips, baby food, baby puffs (like good-for-you Cherrios), Goldfish crackers, anything I could think of that a little one might eat, sippy cups full of water and a couple of toys for them to play with on the hour and a half drive to wedding.

I must interject here that our daughter as a child was very soft-spoken and eventho she liked to talk, it was easy to listen with just “half an ear”.  Her children have not inherited her vocal cords.  We were regaled with stories and songs and questions (which the 4yr old demanded that Grumpa look at him when he was talking, quite a feat since Grumpa was driving and Grandma has always yelled at Grumpa to watch the road instead of rubbernecking while he was driving!)  And the 2 yr old was attempting to put her fingers up into her brain via her nasal cavities most of the trip and politely declined offers of a hankie.

Oh ya, let’s just add that Grandma should have tried on her wedding outfit BEFORE it was time to go.  Somehow said outfit shrunk in the closet and Grandma panicked and wore a polyester top and it was 100 degrees outside and Grandma was sweating like Jabba the Hut in a sauna.  And the wedding was outside…..in the sun……

I swear to you I am exhausted right now just writing about the day and I am not even half done!  So I am going to condense this story into verbs and adjectives and short phrases…I’m sure it will suffice…

Babes to get dressed in wedding attire but first need snack

Goldfish trampled into wedding house carpets

Sandwich crusts on wedding house couch

Sticky fingers on wedding house coffee table

Baby needs diaper change….pee ewww baby

Stinky diaper in wedding house garbage

2yr old needs financial incentive to get dressed up

Baba shows up with insignificant other (my mom and her long-suffering life companion)

Hand 19# baby over to Baba to hold

Go to seat in blazing sun

Wedding starts, aisle seat, great photo spot, daughter is first down

Start phone video

Video stops….no more storage space.

Panic

Grab Grumpa’s phone, don’t know how to get video going, throw it at Grumpa

Help, Grumpa, HELP

Grumpa has no cheaters handy, can’t see

100 degrees….blazing sun….polyester top (black of course) rivers of living water pouring from Grandma

Daughter coming down isle

NO PICTURE

Major panic mode as it is getting closer to the time the grands start down!

Get Grumpa’s phone to picture mode.

Sweat pouring into Grandma’s eyes, can’t see to take photos, snap, Grandma, snap

Granddaughter walks down aisle looking like a little funky princess in creamy white and pink tulle dress and cowboy boots….

Blindly snapping photos as now eye make-up has run into eyes and burning out irises.

Here comes grandson, with his cowboy hat and white shirt and gray vest and jeans pulling a red wagon with baby in it with sign on the back saying , HERE SHE COME

Hitting buttons on phone hoping to hit right one for photos, can no longer open eyes

Bride and her proud papa come down aisle, see black and white blurs, think it must be bride and dad

Wedding starts

Time to run up and get grands to sit with us

Hobble over (did I mention I had on my cowboy boots which were killing my feet and wool socks on?) and grab grands

Someone has given them suckers, look around to see who to punch, as their photos with the wedding party are AFTER the wedding and both kids are already drooling Tootsie Pop on clothes.

100 degrees, black polyester top, Grandma is slowly dying of heat stroke, can feel feet swelling inside cowboy boots, wool socks on.

Baby not happy.  Cry, baby, cry

Baba gives bracelet to baby to chew on..baby wants phone…Baba gives baby phone, chew, baby, chew

Grandma freaks, germs, baby, germs!

Grandma has to take 2yr old in house to get sucker out of hair and to wash sticky hands and face and to try to get out orange stains on creamy white and pink tulle dress from ^%$& sucker.

Grumpa comes in….4yr old needs potty…needs newspaper….

Wedding over…..Grandma and Grumpa miss most of it…hope to see video

Two hour wait until reception

100 degrees, wool socks, hot, sticky, crabby, hungry and the kids aren’t too comfortable either!

Find chairs in shade, drink countless glasses of ice-cold water, try to keep grands happy and clean and hydrated….

Cry, baby, cry

Pick off woodticks

Finally time for photos….find Grumpa and 4yr. old….

2yr old needs more financial backing to put headband back one (how can a 2yr old have such a concept of money? )

Grumpa escapes somewhere.

Cry, baby, cry

7 time dad takes baby, magically baby falls asleep on his shoulder

Love, Chris, Love

Time to get over to reception.

Grumpa takes all babes in daughter’s SUV

Grandma gathers all diaper bags, clothing, food

Spies baby car seat

Oh-oh

Give car seat to teenager to run it to Grumpa before Grumpa has to walk back with all three babes

Whew

Oh-Oh

Grandma has locked the SUV and still has keys

Grandma is going to be in BIG trouble

Run, Grandma, Run

I have to stop here and get ready to go to a birthday party and then go on to work so I will leave you with the photo I took of myself while we were waiting to eat at reception.

It pretty much sums up the day so far.

I will continue this story later and there is plenty more to tell!image

 

AN ALARMING TALE

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Picture this:  It is 11:50pm last night and I am sitting on my blow-up bed in my client’s livingroom and she is asleep in her bedroom and I am innocently using my iPad when suddenly there is this megadecible “AAAAA-AAAAA-AAAAA” sounding noise.  At first I thought I had done something wrong on my iPad (I am so technically challenged that it would not surprise me if I really could do something to it to make it sound like that!) and I was frantically trying to figure out what the heck I had done and I was terrified of my client waking up furious that I had making such a racket in her livingroom.  I wish I would have had a video of my facial expressions as I am sure fear, horror and confusion would have been flashing on it all at the same time.  Finally I figured out it wasn’t coming from my iPad (you know, I really should have known that unless it had a bomb in it, no way was it going to make that kind of noise, but like I said….severely technically challenged) and so I frantically ran around the tiny apartment (in my jammies and Xmas apron….don’t ask) trying to find the sound.  It then dawned on me that maybe it was the FIRE ALARM and I should perhaps look out into the hallway.  I felt the door first to make sure it wasn’t hot (I learned that somewhere) and nope, not hot.  I sniffled…no smoke odor.  So I slowly opened the door, all the while being made deaf by that dang alarm above her door.  I of course, forgot I was in my jammies and Xmas apron until I saw the look that the next-door gentleman gave me.  Can you imagine what he must have thought?  Here is this fat old lady with rainbow hair, a Xmas apron and black saggy capri jammies and pink bunny slippers on coming out of the apartment.  I bet he was more afraid of me than the alarm!  Anyway, he said he didn’t think anything was happening, that the alarm had gone off earlier in the day.  So I went back in and ran into my client’s bedroom cause I figured she must be freaking out by now but no, she was still half asleep and wasn’t the least bit concerned.  Which rather shocked me cause had there really been a fire, I don’t know what we would have done as she has a walker and can barely move with that and we would have had to go down four flights of steps as once the fire alarm goes off the elevators stop working!  I was in a quandry as to what the heck to do as I must admit this was a first for me.  Do I force her out of bed, just in case?  Do I just leave her and wait and see what happens?  All the while I am beinging tortured by that ultra-loud alarm.

The phone rings and I am sure it is the fire department telling us to evacuate (would they call?) but it is a neighbor who keeps a look-out for her and he isn’t sure if there is an actual fire somewhere or not.  He thinks the alarm has been going for more time than it should.  Oh great! And to make matters a tad bit hairier, he is talking on his cell phone and I am only getting every fifth word as he is breaking up and he decides it might be nice to chit chat.  I had that feeling that Ashton Kutcher was Punking me and this really wasn’t happening.  After five minutes of trying to be polite but not getting anything he is saying and now I am sure my ears are bleeding from that damn alarm, I yell into the phone, “Just knock on the door if we need to evacuate” and hung up.  By now my ears were having sharp pains shooting in them and I couldn’t put my fingers in them to try to block a bit of the sound as I had to hear if he knocked or if my client yelled for me so I went and sat in the bathroom on the tub.  It was the only place I could go to try to get away from some of that eardrum-piercing sound.  Before I went in, I did notice that the fire department was finally on the scene with their ladder engine (now this was a good 15-20 minutes after the alarm started and the fire department is literally across the street!!!!).  I should have gone out on the porch and yelled down to them, “Hey, what the heck is going on” but I just thought of that now.  I did, tho, have the thought, if we had to evacuate how ridiculous I was going to look in my “outfit” but changing never even occurred to me.  Besides, with my luck, I would have been half-naked when the call to evacuate came and then….oh my, it’s too horrible to think of.  Best I get caught in my ugly jammies and Xmas apron than my wrinkled, saggy, birthday suit!

Finally after a good 20 or more minutes, the alarm stopped.  But now I had the loudest ringing going on in my poor ears and I really thought they might be bleeding.  I can now understand when someone in a movie hears a big blast and their ears bleed.  I have never experienced such a loud, piercing sound before (ok, my grandson can produce a sound even sharper but not for as long!)  Today I called my company to file an incident report as my ears feel “full” and I am having random shooting pains in them.  Can you believe that?  Needless to say, it wasn’t a routine night!

TALES FROM THE ROAD LESS TRAVELED

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My normal route to town is still closed so I am still going down the bumpy country road which at times is much more bumpy than others.  It truly gets a “washboard” feel to it.  I wonder what makes it like that?  You can actually see the washboard ridges in the dirt.  And you certainly can feel them.  I think I have lost some dental enamel from my teeth clacking together while driving down it.

I have two stories about that road that I’d like to share with you today.  So grab a cup of your favorite beverage, turn up the heat, and get comfy.

The first story really isn’t mine but I’m sure my neighbor won’t mind me sharing it with you all.  Last year a trailer carrying a piece of equipment hit the bridge on Hwy 7 causing it to close for a short time so we had to use the dirt road (as we are today).  My neighbor, whom I shall call, “Mrs. X”, was coming home from dropping her kid off at the local high school and saw another neighbor, who shall be named, “Mr. Y” riding his horse down the road.  She slowed down to say hi, when all of a sudden, his horse went nuts and ran into Mrs. X’s car throwing Mr. Y over the roof and smashing in the driver’s side window, side mirror and some of the door and fender.  And doing great bodily harm to itself in the process.  Needless to say, Mrs. X was quite shaken by all this and had in fact, gotten a serious shoulder injury that didn’t manifest itself until a short while later and was so bad that she needed surgery months later.  Mr Y was “under the influence” at the time of the accident and seemingly incurred no injuries in his flight over her car.   A sheriff was called and I wish that I could have seen the expression on his face when he got there and saw what had happened.  How many calls a year do you suppose he gets where a drunk is riding a horse and it goes nuts and rams into a car?  It must not happen as often as you may think because he didn’t know if he should issue a “DWR” (drunk while ridiing) ticket or even if there was such a thing.   And Mr. Y had no insurance.  Can you even get a policy that covers horse accidents?  Oh sure….it’s called a rider!!!!!!  (ho ho, I kill myself).    I was driving down the road last week when I saw Mr. Y riding a horse and he went up off the road and up on a hill as I drove by.  I think he must have learned something in all of this as have all of us in the country…..”FRIENDS DON’T LET FRIENDS RIDE DRUNK”

My second story involves another neighbor whom we all refer to as, “psycho guy”.  This person owns quite a piece of land next to the river and has NO TRESSPASSING signs all over the place and most of the property is fenced in and he even has a big gate that is always closed in front of his driveway.  Paranoid?  Ya think?  We once made the huge mistake of going on his land thinking we were on a piece of property that was for sale and while I sat in the van, my hubby and young daughter went to scope out the land.  They were met by a furious man, swearing a blue streak telling them to get off his land.  My husband politely told him we had thought it was for sale and he was sorry for the mistake.  The man didn’t stop his filthy tirade as he followed them back to the van.  I cannot remember if he had a gun or not.  I just know I was very happy when we got back on the highway.  Other neighbors have told similar stories so we were not the only ones to think he was a tad bit overwrought.  Hence the name, Psycho Guy.   Anyway, last month I noticed a beautiful apple tree on his property but outside the fenced in area.  It had the most gorgeous red apples on it that I had ever seen in my life.  Not a speck of green on them.  Perfect red apples.   Maybe 20 feet from the road.  Very easily picked.  It got me to thinking….how is it that here is this one perfect apple tree right next to the road with these gorgeous red apples on it and no one has stolen them?  And what kind of apple tree has fully developed apples on it in August?   And not an apple on the ground?   I think it was a decoy apple tree.  I think Psycho Guy put a fake apple tree there just to see if anyone would try to breach his private property warnings.  Call me crazy but not one apple was bad or out of place.  And why just one tree?  And the apples were on the tree for at least a month and not one was on the ground.  We have an apple tree.  It never has had apples like his.  I have never seen such red apples.   Real tree or decoy?  What do you think?