Tag Archives: random stuff

Blingtastic Dice Bags

Here at Grammy’s house Tink works on sewing projects because her Grammy is an artist with a needle and thread while her mommy hot glues the patches on her Brownie vest to avoid sewing.

If you need something stitched or darned or patched, don’t look at me. I’ll either break out the hot glue or  I’ll just ask Grammy to do it.

Honestly, I couldn’t compete with Grammy even if I tried. Grammy truly is an artist. Here is her latest quilt.

Grammy's latest quilt creation

The theme of the competition was Original Green. She used only scraps of fabric she already had. Nothing new could be purchased. Adam and Eve are based on photographs of Ace and Tink. The snake is an old tie that belonged to Grammy’s dad. See what I mean? Artist.

Tink really likes to sew, so she and Grammy always have projects they work on together when we come visit.

Today’s project? Custom dice bags for the whole family.

Tink made custom dice bags for everyone. We are a geek family and proud.We are a styling family of geeks now.

IT Guy even got an extra large, gold lame bag for his extra large dice (wink, wink, nudge, nudge.)

My bag is purple sequins lined with silver lame. I believe I get a +10 chance to blind my opponent every time I pull my dice out of this blingtastic bag.

Shiny!

I think there is also a +5 for fabulosity, as well.

Admit it. You wish you had a shiny dice bag, too. I know you do.

The enormous penis song

IT Guy and I have been together for 20 years this month. After all this time, we do actually finish each other’s sentences on occasion.  We’re not trying to be cute, I promise. We’ve just spent a whole lot of time together.

Sometimes our conversations sound like this:

Me: “Do you remember that time . . .”

Him: “Oh, yeah, that you . . ”

Me: “and then you?”

Him: “That was so funny!”

But sometimes even those 20 years of togetherness can’t fill in the blanks and you have conversations like this:

Him: “You know that guy that used to live next to my mom that was in that a capella band that sang that song about the enormous penis?”

Me: “Ummmm. . . . no.”

What 20 years of togetherness couldn’t bridge, the internet could.

(What? You don’t have conversations like this in your house?)

Doing Nothing

Today is Wednesday, and I’m not going to do anything with it.

It’s not my birthday (anymore.) I have no excuse. I just don’t feel like doing much of anything today, so I’m not going to do much of anything today.

I know what you’re thinking, “Megan, it’s a Wednesday. Productive, useful people are all out working hard at doing productive useful things! You must also do productive, useful things! These are WORKING hours of the day. For WORKING. You should be WORKING. Or at least you should be WORRYING about why you aren’t WORKING.”

I think that a lot, frankly. I’m really good at WORKING.  I’m also really good at WORRYING. If I’m not doing one, I’m usually doing the other.

But not today.

There really are a million things to do be done. The health insurance situation remains a mess. Our financial situation remains a mess. My summer clothes are piled on my dresser waiting to be put away. I still haven’t put everything back into the basement after the flood. All my papers from the spring semester are tossed all over my desk and need to be filed. I need to take all the old carpet to the dump. My backyard defies description because it is so overgrown. I am fairly certain no one in my family has clean underwear. The to-do list goes on and on.

Actually, I made the to-do list this morning in my journal, and it takes up 3 pages. 3 pages!

I’m not crossing a single thing off today, and I’m not going to feel guilty about it either. HA!

I even have a blog post I want to write about turning 40 and the past decade and the deep, unending funk I was in until my friends snapped me out of it this weekend, but writing it is too much like doing something. It will keep.

Instead I’m going to write this post about nothing,

and then, after that, I’m doing nothing else,

Nothing at all.

In summary, it’s spring

Let’s sum up the past two weeks.

The bad stuff:

IMG_3213

The washing machine broke and flooded my entire basement with 4 inches of water. That’s my carpet floating in that photo.  We got it dried out (with the help of a We Dry Out Your Basement company, our home owner’s insurance and a paying a big deductible we couldn’t afford.)  Now my basement looks like this and we’re waiting for a contractor to fix it:

IMG_3262

Then Penny decided to remodel the living room couch:

IMG_3298

During my black belt test, I flared up my ankle injury again AND started up a whole new cycle of pain in my left knee, so I’m back to this:

Running out of frozen peas

and this:

Damn knee. Damn ankle.

I can’t go to the doctor or physical therapist because our current horrid insurance plan won’t pay for it and then I’ll have another pre-existing condition, so I just have to wait it out.

But, it’s all small stuff, isn’t it?

I read the paper and listen to the news from Japan and Libya.

My stuff is all small stuff.

I am one of the fortunate ones.

Happy Birthday

Gramps and the grandkids

73/365 Gifts

Abundance.

75/365

I am remembering my word.

76/365

And it’s spring, glorious spring.

SProing!

We’re all blooming again.

Another Nothing Much day

Today was another lazy, nothing much day.  Coming to the beach in the winter is perfect for doing nothing much.  It’s quiet out here.  The pleasures are simple and slow.

I managed to grade some more papers, but all I wanted to do was read.  I’m reading The Swan Thieves by  Elizabeth Kostova, who also wrote The Historian.  It’s an intriguing book – a sort of mystery with fascinating characters.  I keep reading it instead of grading papers.  I keep reading it instead of going to sleep at night.  I’m slightly annoyed that I have anything to do other than read it.  (If you are looking for a compelling, well-written story, I highly recommend The Swan Thieves – and The Historian.)

But there were other things to do today .  . . like go treasure hunting on the beach.

Treasure hunting

The metal detector belongs to John. Yesterday, he found two earrings (mismatched), some staples and a camera lens. It’s not really what I would consider treasure, but Ace was fascinated. He wanted to try it today, so we went back to the beach. I was really more interested in walking Penny. Swinging a metal detector and then digging holes with very little hope of finding anything good — I just don’t have the patience for it.

They found a nail today. Woohoo? Ace enjoyed it though.

The treasure hunters
This picture is freaking me out because Ace is the same size as his grandmother. How has he gotten so big? I can’t fathom it.

Later in the afternoon, IT Guy and I took Tink to see Tangled, the latest Disney princess movie. Ace decided not to go. “I have seen more than enough princess movies,” he said. It’s too bad because the movie was a lot of fun, and Ace would have enjoyed it. Maybe we’re finally reaching that point though – that point where the 4 year age difference between my kids finally becomes apparent.  Last week, we took Ace to see Harry Potter 7, but we left Tink with my mom.  It’s PG-13 and too dark for a 7-year-old.  Then this week we end up at Tangled with just Tink, and Ace stayed with Grammy.  Maybe our days of family movies are ending until Tink is into the teenage years.

It can be nice to have some time with just one of the kids.

In the lobby waiting for the movie to start
Tink waiting for the movie to start

But I did miss Ace at the movie.  He would have loved the horse that acted like a dog.

How many years do I have to wait for him to grown out of the “Too Cool for Fun” thing?

Sigh.

Tomorrow we head home.  Back to real life.

I’m going to spend the rest of the night on the couch with my book in protest.

Mustaches & Mullets: Stachetastic Thursday

I had a giant stack of papers to grade today, so after I dropped Tink off at school, I headed to my local grading location aka Starbucks and set up shop.

I made it through 4 papers before I realized I was going to require some outside motivation to stay focused.  Here is the deal I made with myself.  Every 4 papers I graded, I got to put a mustache on someone.

Highly motivational.

You see, I have this app for my iPhone called Stachetastic and it allows you to put mustaches on photos.  I have entirely too much fun with it.

I graded a lot of papers today, so I got to put a lot of mustaches on my unfortunate friends and family.

I’ll bet  you didn’t know I used to date Karem Abdul Jabbar?

Sadly, it didn’t work out between us.  I think because my ‘stache was lacking.  He later found himself a lovely mustachioed lady and they had a beautiful baby who has inherited his parent’s superior ‘stache genes.

My sister is settling into married life quite nicely.  I’m a little surprised about how quickly she let herself go, though.  I mean, she’s really letting Gump see exactly who he married.

Of course, he seems to have changed a bit since the ceremony himself.  I believe he had decided to fufill a lifelong dream and audition for Motely Crue.

Ace has a new look these days.  We’re having trouble with personal grooming.  I understand this is fairly typical for a tween boy.  He’s not very interested in showering or changing his clothes.  I’m afraid he’s just let that extend to his shaving habits as well.

Of course, I have to admit that it runs in the family.

(Honestly, that picture just scares me.)

IT Guy was hard to ‘stache because he already has so much facial hair.  I had to branch out for him  . . . . into mullets!

Then my friend, James, actually requested I give him a mullet . . . . but in my artistic opinion, he’s more a glam rock kind of a guy.

(IT Guy, James and Gump look like they are all in the same band.)

Things were getting a little out of hand, I have to admit.  I mean, what kind of mother puts a mullet on her 7-year-old?

Oh, right, this kind.

Honestly, no one was safe today.

Not even the dog.

Did I mention I can do 80s hair also?

I’m not sure that’s a fair one because I actually had hair close to that at one point in my life. Poor Tink. A mullet and a mustache all in one day. She is not amused with me.

I am amused with me though.

Hey, Mom! I’ve had too much fun!

I’m pretty sure I’ve had too much fun.

So here’s the best part of this entire ridiculous story.  I just randomly decided to start slapping mustaches on people and texting them the pictures.  I did GenieAlisa and her son, Ian, first.  Then I decided to ‘stache her husband, Puckeater.  I afro’ed him up, giggling hysterically the entire time, much to the alarm of all the other Starbucks patrons who were all watching the weird lady behind a stack of student essays at the corner table cackling quietly all by herself.  I texted him the picture and then he texted me a picture right back.  A picture of him, right now, today, sporting a real deal ‘stache.

Isn’t he looking very fine and Tom Selleck-like?

Puckeater informed me that is it Movember and men around the world are growing mustaches this month to raise awareness and funds for men’s health issues like prostate cancer.  I had NO idea my insanity was so topical!  So we can pretend that all of my ‘staching was really just a way to raise awareness for Movember . . .you know, instead of what it really was . . . that I’m punchy and tired and, therefore, amusing myself in increasingly stupid ways.  This is why I don’t drink or do recreational drugs, ladies and gentlemen.  I don’t need any help to act like a loon.

Happy Movember, Everyone!  Get your ‘stache on!  (Or send me a picture and I’ll get your ‘stache on for you.)


A Day Filled With Duct Tape (and other stuff)

Today, I did this.  (In fact, I’m still doing it. I did finally finish my statement of teaching philosophy.  Now I’m just assembling EVERYTHING else for my teaching portfolio. Whee!)

This is what I got to do today

Sometimes things seem really big,  you know.  They are so big that you don’t know if you can handle them.

Sometimes things seem really big

That’s what I felt like this morning.  (Hell, I still feel like that.)  The only cure  I know for that TOO BIG feeling is to get outside for a bit.  Move. Breathe.  Remember what matters.

Penny in the creek

Fall

Creek

Bridge

That goes somewhere, right?

(Sorry, I’m so cryptic.  I’ve been staring at a computer screen all day trying to assemble a document that screams HIRE ME.   That document also needs to have zero grammatical errors.  It’s a lot of pressure.)

Then we came home and I did more of this

This is what I got to do today

while the rest of my family had an all day craft party with duct tape. Yep, duct tape.

The crafters
The Crafters

They started with some fancy duct tape and a plan for a wallet.

Getting to work

A little bit of team work and Presto!

First creation - duct tape wallet

Interior pocket of wallet

But a wallet wasn’t enough. If you have a wallet, you need a bag to match, right?

CRAFTS!

They made a tote bag out of duct tape.

Tink and her tote bag

The duct tape tote bag is the perfect size to tote duct tape.

Duct Tape Tote Bag for Toting Duct Tape

Eventually, even Ace started crafting. He made a “punk rock” wallet out of black and silver duct tape.

“It says L and P for Linkin Park, Mom,” he said.

Punk rock wallet
Um, do you want to tell him or shall I?

By 8:30pm, they had a pile of duct tape creations. Wallets, bags, bracelets, coin purses, rings, faux-cellphones, and a bunch of random tape applied to Ace’s camo vest.

Results of Duct Tape Craft party

Guess what you all are getting for Christmas?

Things my husband loves that I don’t get – Volume 1

There are a series of things that I just don’t get. I don’t get their appeal.

All of these things also happen to be things my husband adores.  Every time he brings them up and I just stare at him blankly, I know he wonders how he could possibly be married to me.

All of these things are supposed to be funny, but they’re not, at least not to me.  Perhaps all this list proves is that I am humor impaired.  I really don’t know, but if anyone can explain the appeal of any of the following to me, please do.

1.

The Pink Panther

I know it is supposed to be funny.  The Inspector has a funny accent.  He’s incredibly stupid.  There is lots of slapstick.  I’ve never been sure what the pink cartoon panther has to do with anything, but that’s part of me not getting it.  And I don’t. I don’t get The Pink Panther.

2.

Spy vs. Spy

IT Guy was cleaning out the storage room and he found a couple of his old Spy vs. Spy books.  He flipped through them, chuckling fondly and then passed them over to Ace and Tink. Ace and Tink have been reading those books cover to cover on an almost daily basis.  They keep trying to explain it to me, “See, Mom.  Look at what the Black Spy does to the  White Spy. Isn’t that hilarious?”  Um, no.  Not finding it hilarious at all.  Not even kind of funny.  Just don’t get it.

2b.

Mad Magazine

Since Spy vs Spy was a regular feature of Mad Magazine, I suppose this is really all the same thing I don’t get.  As a kid/teen, I had zero interest in Mad Magazine.  I didn’t like the art.  The guy with the orange hair and freckles? Ugh. Was he supposed to look like a slightly deranged Opie from The Andy Griffith Show?  I didn’t get the humor.  Still don’t.

3.

Rocky and Bullwinkle

Spies?  A dumb moose? A squirrel in a hat?

4.

Sigmund the Sea Monster (and really any other show by Sid and Marty Krofft, including H.R. Pufnstuf.)

Honestly, Sigmund goes beyond my lack of understanding into just being freaky.  Watching even 5 minutes of that show gave me the heebie jeebies.  I swear I could almost hear the rubber of that sea monster costume squeaking as it moved around.  And the movement itself – the rubbery little geisha steps and the way the tentacles flopped  . . . ughhhhh. . . the stuff of nightmares.

Anyone love Sigmund or Boris or the Spies?  Care to explain.

(Crap. I’m going to have Sigmund the Sea monster nightmares now.)

Wallets – Lost and Found

When I was 19, my family flew to the Florida Keys for a vacation.  We had a layover in Nashville.  I stopped at a magazine stand and bought a cheesy magazine, probably People, and some gum for the second leg of the flight.  Then I bordered the plane.  It wasn’t until we touched down in Miami that I realized I didn’t have my wallet anymore.  I racked my brain trying to remember where I last had it.  I remembered the magazine stand, but which stand was it?  What concourse?  I had no idea.  I was moving in Only Essential Systems Operating Travel Mode.  I don’t like to travel. (Well, I don’t like the process of getting new places, but I love being there.)  I still travel this way – in a bit of a self-induced haze, focusing on anything other than the airport or airplane I am currently in or on.  I couldn’t remember where I was when I bought the magazine.  I had no idea who to call to see if someone had found my wallet, several states away.

I went with my parents to the rental house on Duck Key, despondent.  I had lost all my vacation money, my driver’s license, my credit card, my wallet pictures.  Gone.  All gone.   But then, the next day, my mother called me over to listen to something on the phone.  There was a message left on our home voicemail.  ”I have your wallet. You left it in my newspaper stand,” said the voice.  ”I’m mailing it back to you.”  A week later, when we returned from vacation, I went straight to the mailbox and there it was.  My wallet.  Completely intact – every last dollar accounted for.

On Sunday, Tink and I needed to get some cupcakes for her class.  We’d spent most of the day puttering around the house – cleaning, visiting with Grandma.  I hadn’t gone out since the night before when we took the kids to see Shrek 4.  I picked up my purse and it felt light.  I looked in.  My wallet was missing.  I didn’t panic at first.  It was only after 20 minutes of ripping my house and car apart without turning up my wallet that I began to panic.  An hour of searching led to more panicking.  Then I started making phone calls.  The last time I had used my wallet was after the movie at Border’s the night before.  I called Border’s.  They didn’t have it.  Then we went to Chik-fil-a for diner, but I didn’t pay for dinner.  I didn’t take my wallet out.   Then we went and stood in a big crowd in front of a stage to listen to a band and watch the kids play in the fountain.  I started to have a sinking feeling.  Could I have dropped it out there somehow?  Or worse.  Could someone have pinched it out of my purse while I was in that crowd?

I called the security office.   They didn’t have it.  I drove back down there and retraced all my steps.  I talked to the security guard who was on duty the night before.  I searched the parking garage.  I peered through the window of the closed Chick-fil-a. (Why is Chick-fil-a closed on Sunday?)  I didn’t find it.

I came home, called the credit card company and reported my card stolen. I got the documents together I needed to get a replacement license at the DMV the next morning.

I lay in bed fretting about identity theft until late in the night.

This morning I asked IT Guy to check the Chick-fil-a on his way to work.  I really didn’t have much hope of finding it anymore, but I wanted to be sure.  ”Can you just stop there and ask and then maybe check Border’s again?”

I went to volunteer at Tink’s school.  I planned to head to the DMV right after, but as I left the school, my iPhone pinged.

“WALLET FOUND AT CHICK-FIL-A!” it said.

That was a really good text message.

I zoomed down to IT Guy’s office to be reunited with my wallet and every last bit of its contents.  Nothing was missing.  My license.  My credit card.  My cash. Even the loose change.  All there.

See?  People don’t always suck.  Some are honest, at least the ones who find my wallet seem to be.

Leftovers

NaBloPoMo has been harder this year than last.  Perhaps it is because last year it was all new.  I had never tried it before. I didn’t know if I could do it.  It was novel & exciting.

This year, while I still enjoy writing everyday, I have had several days where I’ve thought, “I have nothing to say today.  Nothing at all.”

Today is one of those Nothing At All days, but I can’t stop just 3 days away from the end of the month.

Yesterday was for creation – of food, of traditions, of photographs, of memories.  Today, we’re all eating leftovers.  I had a bowl of stuffing for breakfast.

So today will also be a day of blog leftovers.  I give you the few thoughts that remain on the table after the holiday.

1.  The dog has refused to pee and poop since we got here yesterday.  It’s like she doesn’t want to soil Delaware.  She will go to the bathroom on  leash at home and she is completely house broken, but as soon as we cross state lines, she forgets all of it.  We must have walked her 30 times yesterday.  I even brought a 20 foot tether and tethered her in the front yard to give her some privacy, but she still held it in favor of peeing on my mother-in-law’s white living room carpet . . .again.  So we’ve kept her in the crate unless she is outside.  Walk her and, if she doesn’t pee , she goes straight to the crate. Repeat.  Finally, she peed and pooped outside – this morning at 6:30am, as I stood shivering in the cold, wind and rain in the front yard.  Thank god because I was considering setting her “FREE” out here in the wilds of Delaware.

2.  I went to the fitness center and did 45 minutes on the elliptical without my neck flaring up this morning.  It’s not kickboxing, but I broke a good sweat.  I really hope this means I’m finally on the mend.  I’m joining a gym as soon as we get home.  I can tell by the way my pants don’t fit that I’ve gained a lot of weight.  I’m guessing I’m probably heavier than I’ve ever been outside of post-pregnancy, but I’m sure as hell not stepping on the scale to find out.  I’ll go fetal, I’m sure.  I mean, even my fat jeans are tight.  I have to get moving again.  It’s either that or go out for the part of Santa at the mall . .. . I have the belly and the white hair down.  I would just need a beard to finish the look.

3.  We’re talking to family members about making it a no gift Christmas for adults.  It makes me sad a bit because I love to buy presents for people, but money is so tight.  Even when we decide we’re just going to buy “little things,” we end up spending several hundred dollars by the time we finish everyone.  I don’t really need anything (well, except a new oven, a fix for the leak in the roof and a housecleaner – but none of those things are going to fit in a stocking.)   We’re already overrun with stuff.  I just don’t see how we can do it without running up more credit card debt and that just can’t happen.  I guess we’re going to follow the Who’s adage “I guess Christmas doesn’t really come from the store.”  The kids will get presents this year, but the rest of us will enjoy the low credit card bills and freedom to avoid the malls for the season.

4.  It’s cold and windy here and I just want to sleep.  I wish I was a bear.

I could easily hibernate until the crocus come up.