Sunday, December 27, 2009

Things I Learned This Christmas

I learned some important things this year.  I feel I should share my new-found wisdom so that you, dear readers, can learn from my Christmas mistakes!
  • Wax paper doesn't go in the oven.  That's what parchment paper is for; if you think it's no big deal to substitute wax paper for parchment paper so you don't have to run out to the store for more parchment paper two days before Christmas, your kitchen WILL SMELL LIKE A CANDLE ON FIRE. 
  • Stained Glass Cookies are NOT worth the effort to make.  They are DEFINITELY not worth running out to the store 2 days before Christmas to get more parchment paper.  We threw away the dough.  Too sticky to use the cookie cutters on, not worth the frickin' effort. I consider it a Christmas gift to my sanity.
  • If you FILL your freezer with cookies for everyone's Christmas gifts, YOU WILL GET SNOWED IN.  And you will be stuck with all those frickin' cookies in your freezer until you can make it to your hometown and give them away.  Cuz you REALLY don't want to eat them and have to re-make all those damn things.  
  • If you wait to buy your mom a knock-off Snuggie, (because she refuses to see logic and just wear a robe backwards, cuz let's face it, same thing, except you can TIE a robe!!)  they'll sell out. 
  • As soon as you hang your stocking on the wall, the cat will become ENTHRALLED with it, even if he's been sleeping on all of them for 3 weeks.  (You know, the 3 weeks between when you dug them out of the closet and found the Command hooks and put the hooks up on the wall and finally got around to putting the stockings up.) 
  • If you give you husband (long and tall) pilsners for Christmas and you aren't sure they are dishwasher safe, buy a bottle brush BEFORE Christmas, so that you are SURE you have one when he tries them out.  Because those are a B*TCH to try to stuff your hand down in and clean out. 
So now you know how my last week has gone and why I have done pretty much nothing except bag up the trash since Christmas.  I took a day and a half off the sit around.  Now I should probably get back to work.  Blerg. 

    Monday, December 21, 2009

    The Week In Cookies... or something.

    It's been a week since my last post. I'm busy enough during the day that I don't have words by the time I get around to the computer.

    Yesterday, my dad bought my birthday present. Dude needs a calendar; my birthday is in September. Maybe that's what I should have gotten him for Christmas.

    I am so tired. Getting ready for Christmas is exhausting. I'm making cookies and other baked goods for my friends. If God can't make me thin, I'll make my friends fat, and all that jazz.

    I made Oreo Bonbons today.

    Tomorrow (well, technically today, it's after midnight) I'm going to my office to turn in my keys. I will no longer be the service-learning coordinator. You have no idea how happy this makes me. I love the title, but I HATE the job.

    Tomorrow, I have to have lunch with TheWeasel. I'm not looking forward to that.

    Tomorrow, it is also my goal to clean out the rest of the stuff that's still in the van from when we moved. Then hopefully it'll get better gas mileage for the TRIP TO MY PARENTS' HOUSE!!!!! this week. And we'll have room to bring back the bar-stools from my parents' basement. I can't wait to have seats to eat at instead of the floor or the couch all the time.

    Tuesday, Andy and I are making Stained Glass Cookies(I use the site she links back to, but it's not loading right now), Snickerdoodles for Jamie, Cake Pops a la Bakerella, and Nutella Turnovers. Hopefully all that stuff will work out. I added food coloring and thinned the almond bark on the Oreo Bonbons so they look kind of different than usual. They still taste great though. I hope everything works out and people like them.

    OK, I should post this and wrap up and go to bed.

    --Oh! And I made a stocking for Punk. And Andy's aunt made him 2 scarves and they should be in the mail! Punk likes scarves. He drags mine around the house. I'm excited.

    Sunday, December 13, 2009

    Chad Ora Howard-- May 25, 1979-December 13, 1995

    There are some things you never think you’ll have to say.  And then there are things you say so often you’re surprised when someone hasn’t heard them. 

    When I was 9 years old, in fourth grade, I got the flu on a Sunday morning.  So I stayed home from church.  Monday I felt better but my parents kept me home to make sure I was ok.  Tuesday I relapsed and was sick all morning but better in the afternoon.  When my brother got home from school, (he was a high school junior) I had been cooped up in the house so long, I wanted to play.  He suggested Legos.  I refused.  I wanted Barbies.  We got in a fight and he told me that Mari, his girlfriend in Montana, played Legos, and that was why she was so smart.  That, of course, infuriated me, so I yelled that I hated him and went back to my room. 
    After supper I was so bored and stir-crazy, I was willing to apologize, and even to play Legos.  So I went to my brother’s room downstairs.  The door was locked.  I told him I was sorry through the door and that, if he still wanted, I would play Legos.  No reply.  So I went upstairs and told my dad.  He told me to tell Chad that “he said” to open the door. 
    No reply.
    So I went back upstairs and told him that.  He told me to tell Chad that if he didn’t open the door, he would have to do dishes, the most dreaded chore in our house.   I went back down. 
    No reply.
    At that point, I had had enough.  I didn’t want to tell anyone, but I still wasn’t feeling 100% well and all the running up and down the stairs was making me feel sick again.  So I sat on the couch and read the comics from the Sunday newspaper.  If Chad didn’t want to play that badly, then he wouldn’t be any fun to play with anyway. 
    The next morning, I still wasn’t feeling very well, but I had decided I WAS GOING to school.  I got up at my normal time, got dressed and wandered out to the kitchen to eat the breakfast my father had prepared for me ahead of time.  As I was eating my soggy Cocoa Pebbles, my father remarked that Chad hadn’t come up from his room yet.  Normally he beat me to the kitchen table.  He was always upstairs by 7:15 at the latest. 
    So my dad went downstairs to make sure Chad was up.  His door was still locked.  He usually slept with the door closed, but not locked.  My dad yelled up at my mom to get the spare key to Chad’s room.  My mom got the key, I handed it to my dad when he came up and he told me I should go wash my hands, I don’t know why.  So I went to wash my hands and heard my dad yell up at my mom to call an ambulance. 
    After washing my hands, I went to the stack of folded laundry in the living room, looking for a towel.  As  I was leaving the living room my mom was entering and I remember dancing around in a Chip and Dale style dance, arms straight out, half hugging, no touching except the hands on each others’ shoulders.  Then she sent me to my room and told me Ken and Dee, the neighbors down the road, were gonna come get me for a while. 
    I sat in my room, waiting.  I didn’t know what was going on; I just sort of felt empty inside.  I sat on the floor next to my bed and tried to play paper dolls, but I didn’t have any interest in them. 
    Ken and Dee arrived in what probably was record time, and I left before the ambulance came.  I spent the day at Ken and Dee’s doing various things, making paper crafts, playing with dolls, the usual.  No one told me anything until around 3pm. Ken came home, from the hospital, I presume, and told me that Chad had gone to heaven.  I didn’t really listen.  I thought he must have been confused or something.  I don’t know.   I just went on going what I was doing.  I stayed until supper time.  My parents’ actually got home and came to get my while I was having supper with Ken and Dee.  All the adults decided that Ken could just bring me home after I had eaten. 
    When I got home, my mother was looking in the fridge.  I asked her how Chad was.  She said he was much better.  Not getting the answer I was looking for, I found my father in the dark, looking out the picture window in the living room.  I asked him how Chad was.  He looked down at me and asked hadn’t Ken said anything to me?  Chad died.  I didn’t know what to do.  Ken had to be wrong.  Where was my big brother?  I don’t remember anything else from that night except that there were more presents under the Christmas tree, without tags and I asked who they were for and my parents said me; who else could they be for? 

    Sunday, November 22, 2009

    The one where I talk about Bawls.

    My brother-in-law, Dan, has been collecting energy drink cans since he was in junior high.  He was way ahead of the energy drink trend.  He's tried at least 100 different types of energy drinks.

    The last time Andy and I went to his parents' house, Dan and his friends introduced us to G33K B33R.  G33K B33R is a caffeinated root beer made by Bawls.  As Andy puts it, it's "a unique taste that is pretty much the essence delicious."

    According to the Bawls website, G33K B33R is "the first-ever high caffeine root beer, spiked with guarana! G33K B33R has a smooth, refreshing root beer taste with enough caffeine to make it as strong as a cup of coffee. It’s the perfect drink for any gamer, techie, student or root beer fan in need of a tasty Bounce!"

    This all sounds amazing right?  Except for the part where the universe likes to screw with us.  When we first discovered G33K B33R, Andy and I searched all over town.  We could barely find any Bawls at all. (what's a girl to do without Bawls?!?!)  In the last month as we've looked for G33K B33R, we've noticed steadily declining availability of Bawls.  We used to be able to find it at Target, then they stopped carrying it... Our favorite Casey's stopped carrying it...

    Last week we finally found some G33K B33R at a Casey's. We bought their last 4 cans of Bawls....and they informed us they were probably not getting any more Bawls, especially G33K B33R.  Are you kidding me?!?!? 

    After tweeting my dismay, BAWLSGuarana replied that I should look at Kum&Gos in the city. Rabble Rabble Rabble.  Like I haven't spent enough time looking for gas stations.

    So I present to you, The Quest For BAWLS.  Andy has made a custom Google map to go on the side of my blog to map out where we find Bawls. Wish us luck.  Cuz every girl needs some Bawls. 

    Tuesday, November 17, 2009

    Works in Progress

    Hello all.
    I haven't forgot about you, don't worry.  I think of you everyday.  I'm currently in the process of writing a few posts for your enjoyment.  They just aren't flowing quite the way I would like.

    Here's glimpse of what I'm working on:

    ~A week or so ago, one of my favorite blogs Toy With Me, ran a giveaway for a Jimmy Jane AFTERGLOW Massage Oil Candle.  In order to win, readers had to leave a comment with the strangest place they've ever had sex.  I won.  My situation wasn't so much a weird place as a weird twist.  Let's just say, sheep were involved.  But not the way you might think.

    ~My dad went downstairs to make sure Chad was up.  His door was still locked.  He usually slept with the door closed, but not locked.  My dad yelled up at my mom to get the spare key to Chad's room.  My mom got the key, I handed it to my dad when he came up and he told me I should go wash my hands, I don't know why.  So I went to wash my hands and heard my dad yell up at my mom to call an ambulance.

    ~I'm writing a new bio/'about me' section for this blog and for twitter, but I don't have an excerpt of that ready.  I guess I have a post about me at the beginning of all of this, but who is really going to go back through the entire blog to find out who I am??   

    Andy and I are also working on a blogroll and a new header to brighten it up around here.  I think there's something else that we're working on that I'm forgetting to mention, but it's 3 am and I'm watching House, MD. I'm probably missing more than I realize, haha.  Oh, and a new icon for my twitter feed over there on the right.  Yeah.  I think that's at least most of what's in the works. 

    Oh and by the way, Andy and I have been married 8 months today. In honor of neither of us killing each other, I'll leave you with some pictures of the joyous day. 

    *Stupid new blogger "click and drag" method.  I had a cute, meaningful arrangement for those photos, instead of just all left aligned, and blogger kept reorganizing them and making them look even in click and drag version but not in the previews.  Annoying.  I'll try again later today to fix it, since it seems to be some kind of glitch.  (the photos wouldn't post from flickr either.  I hope this will fix itself......)

    Wednesday, November 11, 2009

    Too Early

    Today would be Madeline Alice Spohr's 2nd birthday. She was born WAY too early.  She lived wholeheartedly, but she died WAY TOO EARLY. Her bright smile cheered the lives of everyone she knew and hundreds of people who never got to meet her.

    Her parents have founded the non-profit organization Friends of Maddie that "supports the families of critically ill babies by easing the transition into NICU life and providing an ally until the end of their child’s hospital stay." (from their website)  They provide Family Support packs to hospitals for the families of babies in the NICU; they help families find lodging while the babies are in the hospital; and they help create a support network for families.
    "Not every child’s entry into this world is an easy one, but by supporting Friends of Maddie you can ensure that their families don’t have to go it alone."

    Every baby deserves a healthy start. The March of Dimes funds research for the prevention of premature birth and the care of all babies.  There are many ways to support the March of Dimes and Friends of Maddie and help every baby get a healthy beginning.  Check out their websites to see what you can do to help. 

    Punk is a Friend of Maddie.  Are you?


    Tuesday, November 10, 2009

    Dance, Monkey!

    It's good to have stooges. This afternoon Andy and I were talking about randoms things while walking out of the mall and Andy happened to mention something *forbidden*. Realizing he'd something I could potentially get mad about, he turned to me and said "You'd kill me, huh?" To which I replied, "Nope, I'd have Punk do it. It's good to have minions."

    You might notice some changes here (for those of you reading in a reader, nothing should have changed). I put one of my groupies to work today adding a better comment feature and a twitter feed. I *think* he fixed the Google Analytics, but we'll have to wait until tomorrow to be sure. Hopefully it's fixed and not broken more... I hope you enjoy the changes.

    Minions are awesome.

    Wednesday, November 4, 2009

    How to lighten your hair, Cunningham-style*

    Step one:
    Wet hair thoroughly.

    Step two:
    Get out of the the shower and curse at the coldness of the room.

    Step three:
    Drip on the cat. This serves 2 purposes. 1. It amuses you and takes your mind off how cold you are. 2. It makes the cat run out of the bathroom by himself instead of you having to pick him up and getting cat fur stuck all over your wet body.

    Step four:
    Shut the cat out of the bathroom. If you don't, he'll decide the lemon juice you are spraying in your hair smells delicious and will try to lick your hair. He will then, of course, end up scratching you as you try to push him away. Then the lemon juice will drip down your neck and burn like a sonofabitch in that scratch.

    Step five:
    Spray lemon juice throughout your hair and comb through it with a fairly fine toothed comb. (If you feel it is necessary, be sure to curse any and all tangles that get caught in the comb. Luckily, lemon juice is pretty slippery and doesn't seem to make hair tangle. (maybe that's just cuz I have short, fine hair, but I used to get tangles like crazy, so use your best judgment. Curse if you think it will help.))

    Step six:
    Walk to the bedroom dripping water and lemon juice down to your towel cuz you didn't wring your hair out (or drip on the cat) enough. Remember to do that more thoroughly next time.

    Step seven:
    Blow dry your hair thoroughly as the heat is what activates the lemon's acid. Make sure you blow dry the cat a little too. He loves it, I promise......

    Step eight:
    Wait a few hours to get maximum effect and then shower again. Whether or not you wash your hair can actually be up to you, many people shampoo with lemon to avoid mineral buildup. Either way, be sure to condition since lemon can possibly dry out your hair. This can be combated with olive oil brushed on the roots, but then you run the risk of the cat licking you again.

    Step nine:
    Either repeat in a few days (don't try it everyday, remember the over-drying!) or say "Fuck it" and just get used to the color your hair is.

    Optional Step ten:
    Wait for your husband to get home and notice that your hair looks different. If he doesn't, spray lemon juice on him and see if he can sleep through the cat licking his nipples all night.

    *Cunningham Style: I don't like chemicals on my head, my brain has enough problems. And I'm cheap... *ahem* economical.

    Friday, October 30, 2009

    A ramble-y type post about self-censorship... and sex (?)

    Ohhhhhhh, the things I could say... And the things I can't say... Let's just say that the things I can't say, far outweigh the things I can say. Or maybe it's that I won't say those things. I struggle to know what I want the world to know and what I don't. I leave a lot of comments on other blogs, comments that track back here. I say things on other blogs that I am afraid to say here for fear that certain people may somehow find this. That sounds like I'm in the CIA or something... In which case I'd be much better at hiding my identity huh? And I'd have a cooler blog name, not the only thing I could think of at the time... ...Anyway, I meant people I know, like my 2nd Mom. For the record, my second mom isn't technically my mom at all. I babysat her kids for years and she taught me pretty much everything I know about being a mom/wife/woman/etc. I sent her the link to a post I wrote last year, and I get paranoid that she'll somehow stumble on this and read something inappropriate.

    Except for my husband, she's the only person I know, face-to-face, that I have ever shared this link with. I have a t-shirt that says "I'm blogging this" but no one has ever commented on it. No one has ever asked. I'm not ever sure how I feel about that.

    After a couple of fights where I changed my Facebook status, I promised Andy I would never post arguments or things that are just between us online. Not like "fit of rage" posts anyway. Some days, though, I feel like he doesn't know me, know who I am, or what I am about, and I write little "journal" entries to myself. I never post them, but I feel better getting them out. I worry about that though.

    I'm really rambling now, especially since I started thinking about the things I say and don't say after entering a contest at another blog. The entry was to post the oddest place you've done the Nasssssty. I entered a story and started thinking about how it is a funny story, but I would probably never share it here. Which is a shame, cuz let's face it, I need all the personality I can get on this blog! And if a friend asked, I would tell them the story. I've shared it online before. But I don't know if I could sleep if I posted it here. Cuz What IF?

    Tuesday, October 27, 2009

    I'm going to hell in a handbasket, because my minivan won't start

    I've been really absent lately. I've been tweeting but I haven't had much more than 140 characters to say. I find myself writing things in my head, but when I get to Peasley, I have no words. My fingers don't want to type and I can't string together more than 2 thoughts.
    Stuff has been happening, I just haven't had the heart to type up all my thoughts and publish them for the world to see. (And by "world" I, of course, mean my 3 readers. Hi Kris, Sarah, and Analise!)

    In August, I finished my year as an AmeriCorps VISTA. The dean asked me to stay in part time until they got a new VISTA. They were hoping to get a new one in November, but they missed the deadline, so the earliest they can get one now is February. At any rate, I was asked to work a certain number of hours at a certain rate. The rate is higher than my time was as a VISTA, obviously. However, due to the time differences (part time vs full time) I make less in a month than I did in 2 weeks as a VISTA. Isn't that a bitch?

    The same week I finished my VISTA term, Andy, Punk and I "officially" moved into our new apartment. I say "officially" because we had keys all of August and moved our stuff slowly over, but we stayed at the old apartment every night until we had to check out because I could walk to work. Once we finally slept a night in the new apartment, we stayed all nights there. That was probably best for Punk, but it was really hard for me.

    Also that week, we switched cars with Andy's brother.
    The first week of both Andy and I commuting to work (we live about 10 miles from M'side now) It rained a solid day and when Andy picked me up from work, the was water inside the dash. As we turned corners, it sloshed around and leaked out, INTO the van in the passenger side foot-well. It wasn't in the glove compartment and it didn't seem to damage anything, and even with several rainy days, it hasn't happened again, But it doesn't make my any happier about the situation. Andy thinks there is just a leaky seal where the wipers meet the windshield or somewhere thereabouts, but who knows. A leak near wiring doesn't sound very safe to me... but no one's died yet.

    In the last 2 weeks, the van has refused to start 3 times. Andy had it checked out today and apparently this is a problem with a lot of these vans. (F U Chrysler!) The battery and alternator are fine, the battery just won't start the van.
    So Andy bought this thing the Red Cross that is supposed to start the battery when this happens. So hopefully that fixes it.. or I'm gonna sick the CrackCat on someone....

    Punk has been a jerk lately. I'm hoping it's just the weather and all the back-and-forth between seasons we seem to be having. He's been biting and scratching a lot though. I'm not sure how to discourage it. He's also developed a fascination with the sink. He likes to jump up on the counter and try to bite the water. Or he'll try to catch it with his paws. Sometimes he'll just stick his head or foot in the water and not even realize he's getting wet. He still gets annoyed by bath time though. I find that super weird since he'll crawl INTO the sink or hop in the shower to lick the water off the walls. He'll also crack-out at weird times, for no apprent reason, or make strange noises and freak Andy out. Punk has never made much noise in the form of meows or whatnot, so it really bothers me when he meows from the literbox at 6am. Is he in distress? What does he want me to do about it?!?! My only theory is this: Boys are WEIRD.

    Punk does really enjoy the new apartment though. He loves being allowed to sit in the windows and he's met 3 of the maintenance men and he really likes them. He's met 3 maintenance men because of several bizarre incidents, which we be featured in a later post because this is long and kinda ramble-y and I really need to get something to eat.
    Since I'm hungry, I'll leave you with a picture of the Cutest. Lobster. EVER.

    Friday, October 2, 2009

    The Birthday Gift: Diagnosis

    Kevin of Always Home and Uncool has asked a whole slew of blogs to post this as part of his effort to raise awareness in the blogosphere of juvenile myositis, a rare autoimmune disease his daughter was diagnosed with on this day seven years ago. The day also happens to be his wife's birthday.


    Our pediatrician admitted it early on.

    The rash on our 2-year-old daughter's cheeks, joints and legs was something he'd never seen before.

    The next doctor wouldn't admit to not knowing.

    He rattled off the names of several skins conditions -- none of them seemingly worth his time or bedside manner -- then quickly prescribed antibiotics and showed us the door.

    The third doctor admitted she didn't know much.

    The biopsy of the chunk of skin she had removed from our daughter's knee showed signs of an "allergic reaction" even though we had ruled out every allergy source -- obvious and otherwise -- that we could.

    The fourth doctor had barely closed the door behind her when, looking at the limp blonde cherub in my lap, she admitted she had seen this before. At least one too many times before.

    She brought in a gaggle of med students. She pointed out each of the physical symptoms in our daughter:

    The rash across her face and temples resembling the silhouette of a butterfly.

    The purple-brown spots and smears, called heliotrope, on her eyelids.

    The reddish alligator-like skin, known as Gottron papules, covering the knuckles of her hands.

    The onset of crippling muscle weakness in her legs and upper body.

    She then had an assistant bring in a handful of pages photocopied from an old medical textbook. She handed them to my wife, whose birthday it happened to be that day.

    That was seven years ago -- Oct. 2, 2002 -- the day our daughter was found to have juvenile dermatomyositis, one of a family of rare autoimmune diseases that can have debilitating and even fatal consequences when not treated quickly and effectively.

    Our daughter's first year with the disease consisted of surgical procedures, intravenous infusions, staph infections, pulmonary treatments and worry. Her muscles were too weak for her to walk or swallow solid food for several months. When not in the hospital, she sat on our living room couch, propped up by pillows so she wouldn't tip over, as medicine or nourishment dripped from a bag into her body.

    Our daughter, Thing 1, Megan, now age 9, remembers little of that today when she dances or sings or plays soccer. All that remain with her are scars, six to be exact, and the array of pills she takes twice a day to help keep the disease at bay.

    What would have happened if it took us more than two months and four doctors before we lucked into someone who could piece all the symptoms together? I don't know.

    I do know that the fourth doctor, the one who brought in others to see our daughter's condition so they could easily recognize it if they ever had the misfortune to be presented with it again, was a step toward making sure other parents also never have to find out.

    That, too, is my purpose today.

    It is also my birthday gift to my wife, My Love, Rhonda, for all you have done these past seven years to make others aware of juvenile myositis diseases and help find a cure for them once and for all.

    To read more about children and families affected by juvenile myositis diseases, visit Cure JM Foundation

    To make a tax-deductible donation toward JM research, go to


    Want to participate, but can't contribute? Re-post this on your blog today and leave a comment on Kevin's blog!

    Sunday, September 20, 2009

    Boudoir Bandit

    My little Boudoir Bandit* is stealing my underwear again. I was just sitting alone at home talking to my dad (on the phone) when I looked down and saw Punk digging through my "surplus" underwear. (That's underwear that doesn't fit in my underwear drawer. I'm not sure I've ever had as many clean undies and socks and such as I do now that the laundry is right outside my door.) As he scurried away with his treasure, he somehow managed to get his head through a leg-hole and just ran around wearing it for a while. My poor father couldn't understand what I was trying to tell him because I laughed so hard I couldn't breathe.

    *I googled "Boudoir Bandit" to make sure I was spelling 'boudoir' correctly and apparently it's an obsolete slang term for gold digger. I talked to Punk and he's OK with being called a gold digger as long as I pay him in Kitty treats, string, and catnip.

    Friday, September 18, 2009

    Guess what I did today

    Guess what I did today. Go on, guess. I tickled this "little" dude's tummy. Cuz I'm awesome. And alligators are totally ticklish. Haha. He was one of the "therapeutic" animals to visit M'side's campus today. I also saw a monkey, a snake, a few birds and some other things, but dude! I touched an alligator today! He was so calm. I felt along his tail and across his belly. It's a little different than a crocodile (I felt a baby one at Reptile Gardens a few years ago. it was a baby and had super soft feet.)
    He is about 6 years old and probably 4 feet long. So he's twice the size of my cat and 3 times as calm. Haha.

    Andy and I have been married 6 months today, by the way. We didn't do anything to celebrate, but it was awesome anyway.

    Oh, and I killed either the ninth or tenth wasp of the summer in my office today. Is there some sort of door prize for that? medal of honor maybe? Some days, working in my office is more dangerous than driving the Amazing Exploding Minivan.

    Tuesday, September 15, 2009

    Snot Weasels "wanted"

    I need an image of a "Snot Weasel" My "dear" brother has decided that my new nickname upon "reconnecting as a family" shall be "Yellow-Bellied Vomit Squirrel*." Obviously, I can't keep calling him "Douchebag", so I've decided Snot Weasel. But now I need a picture b/c it has to be a "real thing." Help please?

    *A yellow bellied vomit squirrel is actually Yellow Bellied Marmot. My dad thinks he's funny... well, my dad is funny. the story is funny. my brother is not funny. but he thinks he is.

    Tuesday, September 8, 2009

    Aunt Becky Comes to Visit

    In order to get rid of all her BlogHer swag, Aunt Becky, over at Mommy Wants Vodka started a contest. She challenged her readers to use her leftover business cards in picture posts. For contest rules, see here, because I am too tired (read: drunk) to post them all here. So, without further ado, Aunt Becky Comes to Visit. Also known as "The One Where Aunt Becky Visits and Misty Gets Drunk."

    I was overjoyed when Aunt Becky showed up and immediately started taking pictures. I introduced her to the entire family, of course.
    Here's Punk meeting Aunt Becky. He's pretending he isn't overjoyed, but we all know differently, right?

    And she met the Cunninghams (Andy and Misty):

    The original plan was for Aunt Becky to accompany Misty to the pool of the new apartment. However, it has been a DAMN COLD August, so they went to the spa instead. Here’s Aunt Becky enjoying a good massage:

    After the spa, Becky and Misty returned home to hang out with the family. Becky promptly climbed the blinds, Punk-style, in order to spend some time with him.

    Being an asshole (read: male), as he is wont to do, he took that as a challenge.


    Just when it looked like Aunt Becky was down for the count, she made a remarkable comeback! And Punk became her love slave forever.

    This week marks Misty turning 23, so she and Aunt Becky has tea in sweet new ceramic “take out” cups Misty found at Gordman’s.

    After a quiet weekend in, Misty had to go back to work. She left Aunt Becky in bed since she was only working half a day and because her job SUCKS.

    But isn’t Aunt Becky cute when she sleeps?

    At work, Misty had a REALLY SUCKY day. She and Becky decided that they should celebrate in the age old fashion: They got HAMMERED.
    Aunt Becky promptly made a new friend, Rum.

    And then Rum looked on sadly as she met Hyde, of Jekyll and Hyde.

    Punk looked on worriedly as she made friend after friend:

    But Aunt Becky missed her old friend, Vodka. In just the nick of time, some mutual friends came along.

    And they helped her reach her old friend.

    Drink after drink, Punk looked on with concern.

    And like a True Love slave, he took care of his mommy and his Aunt Becky when they had too much to drink.

    Even when that meant he had to take one for the team so Mommy and Becky couldn’t drink.*

    One last drink and Becky and Mommy were ready to call it a night.

    Then Punk pulled Aunt Becky’s head out of the sink (don’t worry, I’ll spare you that photo) and everyone went off to bed. And Aunt Becky got the best sleep of her life. (No one tell The Daver!!)

    The End.

    (Dear Readers,
    Please forgive me if this seems a little ramble-y or anything like that, I’m still a little drunk. Happy Birthday to me!
    Punk’s Mommy/Misty)
    *No animals were hurt or real alcohol wasted in the making of this blog post.

    Monday, August 17, 2009

    The "Amazing" Exploding Minivan

    A few days ago, Andy’s brother moved into the Morningside dorms. Since Dan is still under his parents’ insurance and Andy is not (because he’s not in school and because he’s married) we switched cars. And my heart is broken, because I loved that sweet orange little Reno. I loved the great gas mileage, the audio cable for plugging your iPod right into the stereo, being able to find it in a parking lot. I loved the feeling I got driving it. I loved the security of knowing that if a smaller person got in the passenger seat, it automatically turned off the airbags. (On good days, weight-wise, I loved sitting down and the airbag turning off because I didn’t weigh enough). I loved that Punk’s carrier fit securely between the back of the front seat and the front of the backseat. And I loved knowing that there were the “tie-in harnesses” for extra security when you put a child seat in the back.

    But, as Andy’s dad put it, it would cost “exorbitant amounts of money*” to keep it insured for us to keep. (And I am hurt that we’ve been making payments for it to Andy’s mom whenever we could, while trying to plan and pay for a wedding and life in general {and it’s not the cost that bothers me...} and I can’t imagine that they’ll make Dan pay anything for it)

    The plan I originally heard, back in May when this came up, was that we would switch and we would take the Vibe and Andy’s mom would keep the Reno. Which sucked, a lot, but the Vibe gets good mileage and (once we got the stench of defeat out) was overall, a pretty ok car. Then the plan changed.

    So we switched to the car Dan had been driving for the summer. To a 1997 Chrysler Town and Country van. I’m 22 and I feel like a soccer mom….Except without the security or the kids. But I guess I’ll never get pulled over for suspicion of drugs or something right? (yeah, cuz that was such a problem for me…)

    And the very best thing of all? Andy’s dad, in his supreme talent for making every situation worse, telling Andy (in front of me, of course… like I don’t hate the entire deal in the first place already) to make sure to get it insured because “you know the first time you hit something, it’s gonna explode and all we’ll ever see of you again will be pieces.**”

    *Side note: that is the most “Englishy” thing {read: biggest words} I’ve ever heard Andy’s dad say, even though he went to school {for seven years!!} for an English degree {which he never got}
    ** Well that's just great, cuz then I can be either dead or widowed and vehicle-less! .... and possibly the owner of a dead cat... or the parent to a dead child. Best. Car. Ever.


    Thursday, August 13, 2009

    side note

    One other thing.... why does google STILL think I'm in mountain time zone? I've fixed that like 12 times and it still says I posted that last note at 7:52. It's now 10 am here and it thinks it's like 8 or something. annoying.

    testing... testing... 1... 2... phooey.

    Soooo... Yesterday I installed Google Analytics on here. At least, I thought I did. Turns out I did it wrong. Who knew finding out how many people read my stuff and how many people look at the photos and what google searches brought them to my page would be so hard? Meh. Anyway, I ust wanted to tell you that so I could add the code to this page and see if it works. If not, I'll have to make Andy work on it. Phooey. More to come on my life in general in a while... I have essentially nothing else to do at work today....

    Wednesday, August 12, 2009

    This move is kicking my ass. First, I caught a cold. Which I can't seem to kick, btw. The cough has my lungs in it's tight achey grip. I am exhausted.

    And we have MAYBE half our stuff moved in.... fml.

    Wednesday, August 5, 2009

    The one where I catch a fungus*

    I have 16 1/2 days until my term of service with AmeriCorps ends. Because I have housing through the program, that means I had to find new housing. What a terror. You in the mood for a good scary story? I promise it has a happy ending.

    We started off over in Ingleside. Or some weird place like that. Whatever. The lady told us to park at the Mexican bakery next door. Is that a good sign? Guessing not... We got there to find a house with paint peeling off the siding, ripped off doors and water standing by the foundation. Hmmmmmmm, looks positive, no? The lady wasn't where she said she would be, but we eventually found her. It turns out she had 3 places in that building empty that she could show us. She kept saying "this just needs a little cleaning" at every apartment. Seriously? One apartment's tenant had left HIS BED behind and there was still porn on the floor as she showed us the apartment. Are you kidding me? There were about a million Q-tips on the floor, GOD ONLY KNOWS what he did with all of those. Sheesh.

    She also mentioned she had an apartment in a duplex opening up later that week over on Nebraska Street. That seemed like a little better of a place, both for safety and for jobs ( for me). So we drove past to see what the area looked like. It looked like a nicer place, a slightly better neighborhood, the building looked more structurally sound. The only outwardly visible problem were the (approximately) 47 Hispanic people standing on the front porch. Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not racist, but Andy and I kind of got the feeling that we would end up being resented at a place like this because someone had wanted their aunt or their cousin or friend or someone, whomever, to move in there. Granted, I would have gotten to practice my Spanish but I don't know how much I would learn if all I translated was them cursing at my family for taking that house.

    That place wouldn't be open til the end of the week, at the earliest, so we decided we should keep looking, just in case. We looked all through CraigsList and the classifieds and various other manners. Andy came upon an ad for a rental agency with several openings. So we went to check them out. This is where things get... moist.

    We went to the first place. The neighbors had all the windows plastered with signs for a Laotian Grocery. As we walked across the porch and into the apartment and I could feel the floor moving. When she opened the door, I couldn't even see the kitchen because the kitchen in the "large efficiency" fit BEHIND the door. I walked further in, amazed that they had the nerve to call something this size, smaller than any of my dorm rooms, an apartment. If we put our futon in there, and laid it down, you would have to crawl over it to get into the bathroom. Then I looked up. And a 2 square foot of the ceiling above my was bulging and covered in green mold. Needless to say, I stepped back quickly and tried to hurry the PREGNANT woman showing us the apartment out before we all died. Because I was looking up, I didn't notice what Andy did. He looked down and noticed mushrooms growing on the carpet. That apartment was obviously just FULL of WIN! (and by "win" I obviously mean "spores").

    After hurrying our asses out of there and breathing deeply into the (hopefully) clean and air, we went back to the rental office where they showed us the apartment UNDER the office. The walls were light pink... and the pipes and ducts were fuchsia. NO JOKE. It looked like that scene in Dumbo where Dumbo gets drunk and hallucinates Pink elephants everywhere. Just looking at all the colors was enough to give you a headache or make you think you were tripping. Of course, they ALMOST served a purpose, since I was so busy gaping at the walls that I barely noticed the exposed wiring. Beautiful.

    After that, Andy and I decided we had better raise our price range a little. What we originally were willing to pay would have been fine if it were just us. But this little ball of love
    kind of makes those options a bit pricier.

    So we looked at the next range. Woodbury Heights was in the back of our minds but they didn't have an openings until September 1st and that would make things difficult. Somehow we ended up at Glen Oaks. And it's beautiful. But we were torn. It was higher than we were sure we could afford and a looooong way from our current lives (hey shut up, 10 miles is a lot in the city!) but somehow, God and Ceiling Cat must have been smiling (and purring) on us because we worked out a way to live there and they approved us!

    And this is where things get amazing:

    Told you it was a happy ending :)

    *bonus points to whomever can figure out what sitcom I am referencing in the title.
    --Oh, and the fungus part is a joke from the fact that Andy and I both caught colds after visiting moldy apartments. At least, I hope it's a joke. It is taking me a long time to kick this cold....

    Thursday, July 30, 2009

    It's 1 am and I have a drill...

    You remember when I told you about getting mad and fixing my damn drawer myself? Yeah, I should upload pictures from my camera more often....


    toothpicks, originally uploaded by MistyHCunningham.