Monthly Archives: February 2014

I’ve got a Business Card Holder and I’m not afraid to use it….

I was one of the lucky citizens chosen for jury duty.  Ok, it’s my civic duty, it’s part of our what makes our country so great, blah blah blah.  Honestly, when I first got the summons, I cried.  (In my defense, I’d had a really bad day.)  I was absolutely terrified.  I hadn’t even ever been to the courthouse, nor did I know where to park or where to go once I got inside.  For someone with a bit of social anxiety (yes, I once paid someone to go to the DMV and get my sticker renewed for me), this is a mortifying prospect.

Of course, any time you go to a place like the courthouse, you have to be thoroughly inspected.  I wasn’t overly concerned about this, because what do I have to hide?  A quick jaunt through the metal detector and I’m good to go.  Except for the guard that was watching my purse go through the fancy x-ray machine.  “Ma’am, why do you have two wallets?”

Um, what?  I don’t have two wallets in my purse, but I’m also hard pressed to see what the problem would be if I did.  Perhaps I’m very particular about my credit cards touching.  He pointed to the slim metallic rectangle on the screen, with a harsh, “What is that?”

Turns out it was my business card holder.  A weapon of mass destruction for sure.

After a very stern “You’re free to go, ma’am”, I was herded with the other jury members to a stuffy basement room, where I remained for most of the day.  I have no doubt that most of those surrounding me were thinking the same thing I was:  how the hell to get out of this?  I didn’t know any of the people involved in the trial (my fault for being so anti-social).  I cast surreptitious glances at my other jury mates, and for a moment wished I was the guy with the mohawk, or the gauged out ears, or the villainous eyebrows.  Oh, or the girl that showed up in yoga pants, or the woman that I’m fairly certain didn’t speak English.

In the end, I didn’t get picked, but I’ll still be on call next week.  I think I’ll leave my business card holder in the car.

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5 Strange Movie Terms—Explained!

http://m.mentalfloss.com/article.php?id=55105

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How to Get Your Kids Excited About Survival!

Forever Ready

Many times, when we’re searching for information about how to get through a survival situation, we look to reality television shows and YouTube videos.  There’s a lot of good information out there, but we’re missing a very interesting source of knowledge:  classic literature.

Take for example the book Hatchet by Gary Paulsen.  Many of us were “forced” to read this in junior high literature class, but it’s a fascinating example of a young boy using all the knowledge and skills at he has to survive in the Canadian wilderness.  Inspiring, and even a little gut-wrenching at times, it’s a fabulous read for young survivalists.

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Another favorite is My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George.  If you’ve ever had any notion of getting away from it all and just living in a tree in the middle of nowhere, this book will make you do it!  Young Sam Gribley, dissatisfied…

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It’s Easy to Think it Could Always Be This Way…

As I’m sitting here working at my beautiful desk, jamming out the The Blue Man Group channel on Pandora (which is also playing a lot of Lindsey Stirling, and I don’t mind at all), I like to think it could always be like this.  That I could quit my day job, and be here at home.  The kids are in the other room playing on the Wii (and not fighting over it for once), and the boyfriend is in the garage working on one of the cars.  There’s a fire crackling in the fireplace, a cat on my lap, and a delicious glass of tea just to the left of my laptop.  Ah, paradise.

 

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On Sale this Month!

My Heart in my Hand:  A Collection of Poetry is on sale this month for $.99.  It’s available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords.  Please help me share the good news!

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The Progression of Public Pottying

As a mother of three, I feel like every time we go out in public I spend a great percentage of the time in the bathroom.  No, I don’t mean for myself.  It doesn’t matter that we make the kids try to go potty before we leave the house, or that they had just gone at the last store we were at.  There is always at least one child that absolutely must go to the bathroom, and take their sweet time.  Public pottying with children comes in stages:

Stage 1:  Babies in diapers present an entire bathroom problem of their own.  This is the stage when you realize that you frequent stores and restaurants that DO NOT have baby changing tables in the restroom.

Stage 2:  Toddlers in Pullups are an interesting challenge.  Sometimes they let you know they need to go to the bathroom, and you’re so excited that you don’t mind your steak is getting cold.  Other times, they don’t tell you, and you are stuck trying to figure out how to get them changed when they refuse to lay down on a changing table that they barely fit on anyway.

Stage 3:  Once fully potty trained, a young child is obligated to visit every single public restroom within throwing distance.  Every.  Single.  One.

Stage 4:  The widely-traveled tot decides they don’t want you coming in the stall with them anymore.  This leaves you standing outside the stall and wondering just what the hell is going on in there that takes so long.

So new parents beware!  Ditching the diapers is only a gateway into future bathroom hell.

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photo courtesty of freedigitalphotos.net, by nuttakit

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February 10, 2014 · 8:26 pm

Why It’s Okay to Buy Bread

So we’ve had kind of a nasty winter so far.  The kids have missed umpteen zillion days of school, and there have been umpteen zillion Facebook pics of grocery store shelves being licked clean.  Then there are the umpteen zillion times infinity complaints about all the silly worrywarts that are going out and licking those shelves clean.

The funny thing is, it’s really a natural instinct, and a damn good one to have.  Think about how life was before we had cell phones, Walmart, and pizza delivery.  Settlers on the plains had to prepare when a storm was coming if they wanted to make it to see spring.  Pa better get plenty of firewood chopped and the livestock locked in the barn.  Have you ever read the Little House on the Prairie books by Laura Ingalls Wilder?  I couldn’t tell you anymore which one it was in, but I distinctly remember a snowstorm so bad they had to tie a rope between the barn and the house so they wouldn’t get lost.

We mock those that rush out to the stores, but who are the parents that know their child will have a peanut butter sandwich and a glass of milk for lunch on a snow day?  And which ones are the parents that will have to say, “Well, crap, little Johnny.  I guess it’s water and saltines for you today, cause I have no survival instinct.”

When I know a winter storm is coming, I prepare a little.  I make sure we have main grocery staples in the house, plenty of firewood is brought in (thanks, Pa), and that there’s gas in my car.  Is that so bad?  It’s natural, normal, and keeps me and my family safe and warm.

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The Perils of Online Dating…You Just Might Fall in Love!

“This is gonna suck,” I told my sister on the phone as I sped down the highway toward the next town.  “There’s no way I’m going to like him, and it’s going to be a waste of my time.”  I was truly convinced that I was hurtling towards disaster on the way to this date.  This date with a man I had never met and never even spoken to on the phone.  I “met” him on Match.com, and we had emailed back and forth for almost a month before we finally decided to meet in person.  He seemed nice enough, but surely that was just his online persona.

Right?

When I pulled into the restaurant, my phone jingled at me.  I picked it up to see his name emblazoned across the LED screen, and my stomach scrunched into itself.  Oh, crap, this is the part where I find out he has a terrible voice.  (I can’t help it, a guy’s gotta have a good voice.)  “Hello?”

“Hey, Ashley,” came a pleasant rumble.  “I was just wondering what your time frame was on being here.”

Wow.  Okay, score one point for Internet Boy.

We were meeting for lunch, so I figured we’d spend an hour or so together, and I would escape to my sister’s to blather about how there were no good men left in the world.  An hour was plenty of time for a crappy date.  We ordered our drinks, and drank them.  We ordered our salads, and ate them.  We ordered our entrees, and ate them.  We ordered more drinks, drank them, fiddled with the napkin rings and our straws as we talked and talked and talked.  Somewhere between three and four hours later, we finally left the restaurant.

So here I am, two and a half years later, and still with him.  If anybody needs a success story for online dating, we are a great example!  I realize there’s still a lot of stigma against online dating.  There’s the idea that the only people out there in Internet Land looking for dates are blobby geeks that live in their mother’s basements.  I’m quite sure there are a few of those, and a few other crazies as well, but the ratio’s the same as what you would find in any other dating scene.

As a single mother who really didn’t like going out much, I turned to online dating after my divorce.  At first, it was really just pure fun.  I didn’t meet up with anyone, I just emailed back and forth a lot and got back into the swing of talking to the opposite sex again.  Now, I love to tell people that I met the love of my life online, if for no other reason than to see the look of shock on their faces.

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photo courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net, by Salvatore Vuono

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