Tag Archives: humor

Blinded by the lights

8 Aug

With my kids being under the weather for the past week or three, I’m reminded of just how much I hate having to turn on lights in the middle of the night.

I don’t mind getting up in the middle of the night to soothe away bad dreams, re-insert a soother, remove a pudgy leg from where it’s wedged between crib bars, or wipe a small bottom.  All these things can be (and are) done by the soft glow of the hall nightlight.

When, as a parent, you have to turn on a light at night, you know there’s trouble.  If I have to also find my glasses, the trouble is epic. It means I am doing laundry (which means something aimed at my gag reflex is on sheets and/or children), or giving up entirely on the night’s sleep, or looking for a missing limb, or piggy, or blanket.

Or possibly I am just trying to annoy Carl/let him know I have been up for QUITE SOME TIME.

Recently this problem was made worse by the installation of “energy efficient” light bulbs.  They started out in the bathroom, but if you have ever tried to do your makeup in a Walmart and hoped you would look ok in any other lighting, you know how badly that worked out.

Not to mention, when the bathroom light was left on and I looked down the hall, a “Twilight Zone” pool of glow emerged from the bathroom door. I was spooked.

So the lightbulbs moved into our walk-in closet, because, Carl reasoned, it would be nice to be able to see our clothes clearly and there are no mirrors around.  Unfortunately, this is still the light I turn on if a certain little one needs to use the bathroom at night, which means I feel like I am being woken up to take her to the bathroom in Walmart.

Unlike a lot of people, I actually have nothing against Walmart.  I frequent their stores and take full advantage of their big-box prices.  I believe they have things figured out when it comes to mass selling, even it is does kick small businesses where they notice.

However, the lighting makes my eyelids squinch in on themselves, my lashes stand on end, and my cerebrum curl into a quivering ball of discomfort.  I do not loiter in Walmart.  You may have noticed similar lighting in dollar stores, or, as they are more commonly called these days, Dollar Plus stores.  AKA…stores like any other? Yes, I think so. Stop trying to be special, dollar stores where I need many dollars.

Anyway, this is obviously not the feeling I want to create in my home. Not in the daytime, and definitely not at night.

Energy efficiency be darned, if this is how it’s gonna be. Earth, your sun is lovely and I use it often for light. I won’t shower daily or drink bottled water.  I will bring reusable bags to the grocery store and I will use my glass bottles as vases. Please don’t ask more of me than that.

Don’t even talk to me about cloth diapers.

*Interesting note: I learned that Walmart is in fact actively committed to trying to get these more energy efficient fluorescent bulbs into all homes, and being lauded for their “green” efforts! I guess they practice what they preach and are using these bulbs in their stores as well. Little did I know my comparison to Walmart lighting was indeed so accurate.

Good for a chuckle

31 Jul

Best caption ever.

Pinterest, you are addicting – if you aren’t pinning, you should be.  Then you can see things like this anytime you choose…or just don’t get addicted and, instead, stop by here for regular doses 🙂

I like morning people

21 Jul

I feel like there is a lot of disdain for people brave enough to announce they are a “morning person”.  People sigh, roll their eyes and inform such people they’re crazy, then whisper behind their backs about how annoyingly perky these morning people are first thing in the morning while coworkers or spouses are still nursing coffees and fighting contact lenses into gluey eyes.  This can be seen in the sheer number of cartoons/expressions about being a morning person.

Why don’t we have this same reaction when people announce “I’m a night owl”? Somehow no one holds any bitterness towards these people, who are most productive at night and stay up ’til all hours, eliminating any possibility of becoming a “morning person”.

Really, the whole term “morning person” is kind of ridiculous – we’re all designed to need sleep and to get up in the morning, so really, we’re all “morning people”, whether we like it or not.  Not “doing” mornings really isn’t an option, folks.

I think these disdainful night people just secretly wish they were morning people.  Morning people seem to genuinely look forward to a new day or week and are happy to see people and ready to interact the moment they make contact.  These people seem to have a jump on the day ahead, have better hair days, more coordinated clothes, dinner in the slow cooker before they leave for work, and fresh breath, all things non-morning people wish they had.

I don’t hate morning people.  Maybe because some days I am that morning person, who is just thankful to be alive and healthy, enjoying the fresh morning air that not too many people are breathing yet. I love that feeling.  Other days I am definitely that night person, grumbling jealously about morning people but also gloating in my late-night productivity and taking gloomy pride in the bags under my eyes.  But if I could choose one, I would definitely opt to be a morning person every single day.

Maybe having kids causes you to look at it differently – kids are the most enthusiastic “morning people” you will ever meet, and they can also be pretty determined night owls.  If you have a baby and a toddler, you know exactly what I mean – a fresh little face with wide eyes stares you awake, wanting you to play at 6 a.m., oblivious to the fact that another fresh little face wanted to eat at 3 a.m. and play at 4:30 a.m.  Time to become a morning person and a night person, and fast, if you want to survive.

I like morning people and night people.  The ones I can’t stand are “midday people”.  Really?  Who has energy at midday?  I would happily sleep through the 12:30-2:30 portion of every day, regrouping from my morning person enthusiasm and winding up for some serious night owl productivity.  Siestas really are the way to go.  If you’re going to sneer at anybody, leave the morning people alone and save it for the midday people – then again, maybe that has to do with having kids who nap at midday…

Either way, morning people are good people.  Let them brighten your day!

Which dwarf would you be?

11 Jul

Is it politically correct to think about what kind of small person you would be?

I saw a poster the other day for a dwarf who was new to me – “Gutsy”.  I have no idea what the ad was for, so it wasn’t too effective, unless the goal was to get me thinking about which dwarf I would be, should I morph into a small, bearded, hard-working cartoon man.

It’s easier to imagine than you might think.

I decided I would have to go with Dopey, as he seems to be a pretty balanced combination of Happy and Sleepy, which is a pretty apt description of me on almost any given day.

So which dwarf would you be?  Definitely something to spend some valuable time pondering 😉

Here are your options: Doc, Grumpy, Happy, Sleepy, Bashful (he’s adorable – if you’re adorable, pick him), Sneezy (me during allergy season) and Dopey.  

If none of those are cutting it for you, feel free to make up your own, whether it’s Gutsy or something less glamorous, like Gassy, Creepy, Hungry, or Chubby…or something much more glamorous, like Beauty, Charmy, Smoothy, Chesty, Hottie…you get the picture!  A fun exercise for our Monday brains 🙂

The Wheaties Box Story

24 Jun

One time Carl was on a Wheaties box.

I think this is hilarious.  Look at that cereal box.  Breakfast of champions, that’s what I’m talkin’ about.

Good story, right?

It gets better. 

He didn’t KNOW he was on a Wheaties box.  You’d think they need permission for this type of thing, but nope.  If you’re handsome enough, and look like a champion, you just might wind up on a Wheaties box one day too.  If it doesn’t happen, chalk it up to mediocre looks and lack of champion potential.  Sorry, truth hurts.  You can’t all be handsome champions like my hubby.

Maybe if you eat more Wheaties?  It is, after all, the breakfast of champions.

Still wondering how all this came about? It’s a story with many twists and turns, but I will try to explain.

My aunt in Ontario, who works at a college, walked into a room where these boxes were in production and said, “Hey, I know that guy! What is he doing on that Wheaties box?”

To appease her they gave her one to take home. (They may have been doing it as part of an upcoming volleyball tournament his team was supposed to be attending, not as official General Mills employees.)

She brought it to my parents’ house (in Ontario) at Christmas to show them. She tucked it in a gift basket that somehow ended up forgotten in the bathroom. They throw rager parties apparently, those parents of mine, where random baskets of things wind up lost in the bathroom.

The next time my mom cleaned the bathroom (could’ve been the next day, could’ve been weeks, no telling :)), she found a mysterious Wheaties box with her son-in-law’s (very handsome) face on it.

You can imagine the confusion that ensued.

She called me, in B.C.

I had no idea what Carl’s face was doing on a Wheaties box in Ontario.  Neither did Carl. She took a picture of the box. I laughed hard.

She had to trace back what might have happened the night of that ca-razy Christmas party, and call her brothers and sisters to find out what shenanigans had caused this cereal box to turn up in her bathroom.  Turns out my aunt brought it, as mentioned, and forgot to show my mom, and somehow the box ended up in the bathroom.

Mystery solved. I think?

Time to shape up

6 Jun

Well, it was only a matter of time.

Having a baby, for me, is the ultimate in weightloss, as I don’t have crazy pregnancy cravings and have the miraculous transformation of all my lower body weight migrating up to help my baby belly grow.  Obviously, this time of life with pleasantly rearranged weight distribution cannot go on forever post-baby.  As I am breastfeeding Kristopher for longer than I did Gemma I’ve been able to hang on to the illusion of fitness for a solid 9 months, and I’m thankful for it.

However, this past weekend was a glaring reminder of that oft-ignored truth: thin does not equal fit.  This is one of the few math equations I know I’m right on.  Yes, you can BE thin and fit, but thinness on its own in no way implies fitness.  Neither does apparent muscle, as this story will also indicate.

It all began innocently enough – we decided to buy a double stroller.

I have been lamenting the loss of my almost-daily walks in Ottawa, when I had only one child to cart around and two grocery stores, the library and a park in easy walking distance.  In typical male problem-solving mode, Carl headed to the computer to research and purchase a double stroller for my walking pleasure.  About six days later my lamenting was forced to an abrupt end when this made an appearance in my home.

 Sometimes I should keep my mouth shut.
Obviously, I had no other choice but to try it out, and, finding it drives like a dream in our living room, I decided we should run our errand to the vegetable store sans auto.  This involves a walk that looks something like this:
Ok, I exaggerate a little.
There’s actually no water at the bottom, there’s a veggie store.  And a Walmart.
The funny thing is I used to work at the bottom of this hill, at Benjamin Moore Paints and Old Spaghetti Factory, and I walked to and from work no problem, until I was about 8 months pregnant with my first!  Those were the days.
Anyways, off we set, me thinking Carl could do the pushing and I could ease into the whole shaping-up business by walking alongside the stroller.  Unfortunately, Carl wrenched his knee that morning going for a jog (at least one of us is fit) and discovered that down and up hills were next to impossible.  Determined to see it through (and to prevent me from running back to the car) he hobbled along behind me swinging one leg straight out to the side every other step.  Needless to say, I had to walk quickly enough to avoid association with him.
Going downhill wasn’t actually so bad, so long as I didn’t gather any speed.  While my backwards lean elicited a few chuckles from Carl, and any gravel under my shoe led to heart-stopping skids, I managed to keep the beast under control and arrive safely at my destination.
At the store, I naturally wanted to load up on everything I would have bought had my car been in the parking lot, and was feeling rather high from my successful slide down the hill.  Then we started home.  Here’s another math equation for you:
30+ pound stroller + 35 pound child + 20 pound child + 10 lb bag of potatoes + 5 lb bag of grapefruit + approx 10 lbs in other assorted fruits and vegetables + first 25 degree day of the year = my situation.
The fact that I’m writing this tells you I made it home, and in fact it didn’t even take me long, as I discovered the only way to keep the stroller from beginning a backwards slide was to RUN with my body nearly horizontal to the pavement.  I feared if I stopped it would simply run me over and take my children and produce straight down into the busy intersection.  Looking back, my limping better-half could probably have caught it before that happened, as he was only about half the hill behind me with his special gait.
Needless to say, by the time I got us all safely to the top of the hill my lungs were burning, my thighs were burning, my bra cleavage was sweaty and, worst of all workout woes, my bangs were damp.  But we were there!
We made it home, had a quick dinner, and off I went to participate in a local Amazing Race.
HA.  My poor sister who had the misfortune to be my partner did the vast majority of the running that night, let me tell you.  But when my turn came to complete a roadblock, I did this: run to get a clue, then run across a soccer field and up and down grandstand bleachers 3 times.  By the time I got across the soccer field I was wondering where I stood in the cheating department.  Good thing another team was there at the same time as us, and she was loping up and down the steps like a bored gazelle, because there is nothing like pride to get your body to step up (no pun intended).
Well, if you’re still with me, really, the moral of the story is what I already stated – thin does not equal fit.  While I may weigh as much as my loaded stroller and have mad biceps from carrying the occupants of said stroller all over kingdom come, my lung capacity and lower body strength are, to put it mildly, weak.
I’ve been having a hard time getting motivated to get back in shape because I have no desire to lose weight, but this weekend of gasping and coughing gave me exactly the kick I needed to get my butt back in gear and back in shape, and now that I can walk anywhere with my new stroller I have no more excuses!
So feel free to challenge me to a run or squat-off sometime!  But maybe give me a month or so…I clearly have a ways to go.
In the meantime, I’m up for an arm-wrestle.

Curious Gemma

3 Jun

Lately Gemma has been a rotating cast of characters from TV shows and movies she watches and I am constantly reminded just how impressionable her little mind is.

Totally absorbed in TV

Usually it is funny and cute as she imitates a variety of people and talking animals, and I am a complementary character decided by her, but yesterday she decided Curious George was the one to be.  Fortunately I watch enough of the shows with her to know what was going on since she usually does something with some resemblance to a plot she’d seen: this one involved asking how bears settle in for hibernation.  She carried her pillow out of her bed, threw it on the floor, put her teddy on top and covered it with her blanket.  She then proceeded to hold up her hands questioningly and make monkey sounds at me until I explained hibernation.

I couldn’t find a clip of the actual episode which would make it really clear, but this gives you a pretty good idea of what Curious George is like – a monkey making sounds and a narrator explaining what the ham-scamble is going on in his monkey brain.  If only Curious Gemma came with such a narrator!

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