Sunday, May 31, 2009

I'm Out of My Blogging Mind

Seriously. I can't think of a darn thing to write about. It's not as if there's nothing going on in my life. On the contrary, there are TOO many things going on, so I can't quite grab on to one topic to write about. Do I write about ONE thing or NOTHING. . . .or EVERYTHING?

Let me give this a shot. I'm going to "categorize". That way, you can skim through and pick a topic to read about. If you read the WHOLE ENTIRE POST, I will be in awe of you.


OK, so I'm trying to get used to sounding like Darth Vader and looking like I'm in the ICU when I go to sleep at night with my CPAP mask on. (Seriously, every time I put the mask on, I feel like I'm in a soap opera and the leading man has just come in to see me lying there with this mask on, and my situation looks so grave that he gets down on his knee and declares his undying love for me. . . . .no wonder I can't get to sleep.)

I've had to exchange the mask once already because the first one I had wasn't quite working for me. The first mask consisted of "nasal pillows" that gently sat inside my nostrils. Every time I turned over, they would come loose, so I would tighten the mask until the nasal pillows were crammed so far in my nose that I could taste the plastic. And I had to try to keep my mouth closed otherwise there would escape a gushing wind. If I became especially relaxed, sometimes my cheeks would even flap in the wind. I'm very grateful that my husband never witnessed that. So now I'm using a mask that covers my nose and mouth. It works better, but I still have to get used to having something plastered to my head and forcing air into my facial orifices all night.

We bought a new bunk bed for the girls' room - remember the big makeover (how could you forget, right? since it was all I talked about for 2 weeks). Well, we discovered why the bunkbed was such a good "deal" on "clearance". It's a POS. Or else we're dorks because we didn't realize that we needed a "bunk board" under the top mattress. The two other sets of bunk beds we have do NOT require bunk boards, so we had no clue that we would need such a thing, and the "helpful" salesman at the furniture store neglected to inform us that we would need one. I think he left out that tidbit because we told him we didn't want to pay his store's price for a mattress and we would procure one elsewhere.

Once we got the beds home and assembled, after much blood, sweat, and tears (and I'm not simply using this as a figure of speech - there was literally blood, sweat and tears involved in the process), I got up on the top bunk to make Joy's bed. I was slightly unnerved by the creaking involved whenever I changed position. When I was in one corner of the bed, trying to tuck the sheets in, a whole chunk of wood cracked and gave way - nice, huh? Not to mention the damage it did to my ego.

So a neighbor came over and loaned us his expertise and his circular saw. We were getting rid of a homemade toy cabinet, and he suggested we cut it apart and use it as a bunk board. Great idea! So, he and Al did just that, but the bed still bowed quite a bit when anyone was on it. So FINALLY, this weekend, we got a REAL bunk board to put across the entire bed. Whew! It only took a week to get this done, but for me, the perfectionist, it seemed like an eternity.

(I know it's not grammatically correct, but it rhymes)

I am so far behind on laundry. One of my children had the audacity to TELL me: "Mom, you never do laundry." Although she was slightly accurate, I don't think she should have said that to me because 1) It was disrespectful and 2) It made me mad.

And I can't understand WHY my children seem to lack the either the mental capacity to remember OR the physical capacity to do (or both) simple things like: put clothes in the hamper after they take them off, hang towels back on the racks after they're done using them, put away a toy when they're finished playing, put food back in the refrigerator after they're done eating, etc. I mean, I have really SMART kids, but when it comes to common sense, they're blockheads.

It's June - that is just stinkin' amazing! June makes me want to do 3 things: 1) Have a yard sale! 2) GO to many yard sales! 3) Go on vacation!
Well, I think I will try to squeeze a yard sale into the schedule because there is a lot I need to get rid of. For someone who hates clutter, I sure have a lot of it in my house. And since we decided not to homeschool any more, I have lots of homeschool stuff I can sell. As far as vacation, it will be a simple trip up to the UP (Northern Michigan) again. While we'd like to do something a little more exciting, relaxing in the wilderness of the Yoop will have to do for now. (Our BIG vacation this year will be at Christmas time when we spend 2 weeks in Florida.) My little sis has a week off, so we'll head to Packer-land and hang out with her and hopefully hit some yard sales there, too. See, I killed two birds with one stone, aren't you proud of me?
Also, my hubby and I are going to have a getaway - just the two of us - before we go up north. There's a huge Christian music festival called The Big Ticket Festival, and my favorite band - Third Day - is playing. It's a few hours from here, so we're going to go for the weekend - yahoo!

Joanie is a girl who has been babysitting for us since Hope was born. She started out as a mom's helper - she would come once a week and play with Hope while I got things done. Then she moved up to babysitting, and she has even come on a number of vacations with us - she was camping with us when she turned 16! She's like a member of our family. We kind of hope that Joanie will wait for Evan to grow up and then she can marry him and she can be our daughter-in-law, but I guess there IS quite an age difference. (Speaking of which, did you ever watch a Disney movie and think one of the main characters was cute? This is mildly unsettling for me since these kids - Zac Efron, Corbin Bleu - were in diapers when I was graduating from high school).
Anyway, Joanie lives right in town, but she is coming to stay with us for 2 weeks - we had invited her to live with us for the summer, but that didn't work so the 2-week thing will have to suffice. At the end of the summer, she will be leaving for the Franciscan University of Steubenville - yeah for her, boohoo for us! We will miss her like she's our own daughter. BUT, while she's here, she is going to help me with my yard sale AND watch the kids while we have our weekend getaway.
OK, so I guess I came up with a few things to write about.
I hope all of you out there in blogdom have been captivated by the adventure that is my life. (But I doubt it.)

Friday, May 29, 2009

Waxing Political

I'm not going to devote my entire blog to political and religious issues, but today, I am deeply concerned about some of the headlines.

Texas Woman Told to Remove 'Offensive' Flag From Her Office

A woman in Texas had the American flag on display in her office. You know, the emblem of our country and all that it stands for - the AMERICAN flag. A co-worker, an immigrant from Africa, complained that the flag was "offensive", and so the Texan woman was forced to remove the flag. I have no problem with people who want to come to the US for jobs, a better life, or to share in America's "prosperity" (what's left of it). But if you find the US offensive, then why would you want to live here?

San Diego Couple Ordered to Stop Holding Bible Study in Their Home

San Diego County officials have told this couple that holding a Bible study in their home constitutes "unlawful use of land." Huh? It's not a church, it's a Bible study - a group of Christian friends who want to encourage each other to grow in their spiritual life. What is happening to the freedom of religion in this country?

Charges Against 'New Black Panthers' Dropped, Compliments of Obama

I got the chills when I read about this Election Day 2008 incident: Three members of the "New Black Panthers" stationed themselves outside a Philadelphia polling location. One of them held a nightstick and they physically and verbally intimidated voters coming to the polls. The men were officially charged, under the Bush Administration, with violating voter rights, but guess what? The Obama Administration has dropped the charges. At least there was an injunction against the man with the nightstick prohibiting him from brandishing a weapon outside a polling location again. But still.

And finally, if you haven't heard about this, perhaps you should at least be aware:

Obama and ACORN GPS Marking Every Front Door in America

OK, this is just creepy. There will be a GPS grid that contains the exact location of every front door in America, including yours and mine. This project is supposed to be completed within 90 days. Even if our own government's need for such information is unclear, imagine how valuable such a thing would be to international terrorists, those with a deep and deadly hatred for the US. I would imagine they would stop at nothing to acquire such information.

I hope I won't make any enemies by expressing my concern about these current events. I just happen to find them deeply disturbing.

I promise my next post will be more lighthearted.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Techno Dork

OK, so I really am a dork when it comes to internet technology. I was moving a few things around on my blog layout when I lost my "cutest blog on the block" background. I double-checked and the HTML code was still there, but the background isn't showing. Weird.

So, would any of you be willing to answer some of my tech-ignoramus questions?

One: In the basic Blogger layouts, there is a small variety, but from what I can see, you can only choose a layout that has the sidebar on the right OR the left, but not both. But, when I visit many of your lovely sites, I see you have 2 sidebars -stuff on the right AND on the left. How did you do that???

Two: How do you make a button?

Three: How do you create your own page elements? I know there are a TON of page elements out there that aren't standard Blogger elements. (Stuff like, cool flourishes behind your Title? or cartooned people? or cool little doo-hickeys to highlight your sidebar stuff) Do you ALL know HTML??? Or do you have someone else design your blog for you? BTW, I am still mystified as to how typing in a bunch of words and characters can result in cool blog designs. I know the very BASIC html trick to make a link or get someone else's button, but that's IT!

If anyone is willing to help me out of my unblissful obliviousness, I would greatly appreciate it. After all, "We're all in this together!" (Damn that High School Musical!)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Lessons I Learned From Doing a Room Makeover

If you haven't seen the finished makeover, click HERE.

I spent two solid weeks working on the girls' bedroom makeover. And that was actual painting, moving, creating, designing, etc. Before that, I spent countless hours dreaming and scheming. (Of course, the dreaming was all done while I was awake since I can't sleep when I have a big project in front of me and I can't stop thinking about the details.)

Here are some lessons I learned along the way.

1. It's amazing what you can do if you neglect your children for two weeks put your mind to it.

2. When using a hot glue gun while sitting on the floor, you need to vigilantly remember where the hot glue gun is so that you don't sit on it.

3. It hurts when you sit on a hot glue gun.

4. Giant plastic dropcloths are awesome for covering up all the furniture that you don't want to drip paint on.

5. It is necessary to use masking tape at least 2" wide to protect all baseboards, window and door frames.

6. It doesn't matter how big the drop cloth is or how much 2" masking tape you use, you will still get paint somewhere that you didn't intend to get it.

7. "Accidentally" getting paint on a piece of your daughter's clothing that you really hate is a good excuse to throw that piece of clothing away.

8. You will get more paint on your body than on the actual walls. (At a certain point, I seriously considered covering myself in paint and rolling myself on the walls because I think it may have been more efficient. I can definitely cover more surface area than a pathetic little roller.)

9. It's good to reward yourself with a cold drink, such as Mike's Hard Lemonade or some other drink that children aren't allowed to have, when the project is finished.

10. Mike's Hard Lemonade gives me a stomach ache and a headache (darn it!)

Monday, May 25, 2009

Friend Makin' Mondays - The Love Story

This is my first time doing a Friend Makin' Monday post. I've read many of them and they are so much fun - what a great way to make friends. Thanks to Kasey for coming up with this fun idea. Go over to her site if you want to take part.
My husband and I met when he was 17 and I was 20, in 1990. Yeah, I'm a cradle-robber. :) I was in my third year at Michigan State University, and he was starting his first year. I had gotten involved in an awesome outreach called University Christian Outreach (UCO). I went to the first meeting of the year and there was this new kid sitting in front of me. After the meeting was over, he turned around and introduced himself to me. What was funny is that, at first, I thought he was a 25-year-old grad student, not a 17-year-old freshman! And believe me, there was nothing going on in the attraction department.
Al was an immediate fixture in UCO - at all the activities, always helping with some practical service. Over the next few years, we got to know each other and became very good friends. He was the kind of guy all the girls wanted to be "friends" with because he was such a good guy - funny, honest, loyal, and not at all threatening.
I graduated from MSU after Fall Semester 1992, and it was toward the end of my college career that I started to realize that Al was interested in me. I was kind of slow, I guess, but I also wasn't interested in the least. Everyone else knew it - my room-mates, my friends, my family.

Right after I graduated, I hopped a plane to the Philippines to do missionary work for a year (in total, I spent 15 months there). Al was the most loyal penpal. I really loved hearing from him because he was a connection to home, and he was like a brother to me. Still. . . no "feelings."

When I returned in March of 1994, I drove the 400 miles from my parents' house in Northern Michigan to East Lansing / MSU to go to a wedding of some dear friends of ours from UCO. I saw Al, he came up and gave me a big hug. I was very happy to see him, but. . . .no "feelings."

Three months later, I moved back to East Lansing. Al asked me to go to see a movie with him and I asked him if anyone else was going (I was trying to feel it out, to see if this was a "date".) No, he hadn't invited anyone else, so I told him plainly, "Al, I'm not interested in you that way." (LOL - I have to laugh at how many times I ended up saying such things to him!) But we continued to be friends, hang out together, and grow in what would be a fantastic foundation for our marriage.
Fast forward to January 1995. I needed to buy a car. Al is a car guru - knows the best models, best deals, etc. He offered to come along with me to help me find just the right one. Finally, I started to recognize something in myself. . . .feelings? interest? We went out on a few "dates". But something still didn't seem right to me. In retrospect, it was probably just not the best timing in either of our lives. Regardless, I broke his heart by telling him, "I just don't think you're the one for me."
Almost a year passed, and our relationship was strained after that. Of course it was awkward - I had broken his heart. But eventually, our friendship returned, and around Christmas of 1995, my feelings for Al started to resurface. A group of us had gone out for drinks just before the holidays, and Al was leaving the next day to visit his family in California. I went out to his car with him. I had a weird feeling - I wanted to hug him good-bye, but even more, I wanted to hold him. I wanted him to hold me. But I didn't do or say anything. When I was at Church with my family on Christmas Eve, I had a very strange thing happen. I had a "vision" that Al walked into Church and sat down with my family.
When we returned to East Lansing, I continued thinking and praying about Al. I had no intention of letting him know I was having any renewed interest. . . just yet. In a way, I wanted to know I was serious about him before we resumed any romantic pursuit - I didn't want to break his heart again.
On Valentine's Day 1996, I was working at my job as a preschool teacher. Al had taken my car to have the oil changed. He was always doing little services like that for me. We had plans to go out with a group of friends in the evening to celebrate Valentine's Day. When I went out to my car after work, the snow was falling and it was just getting dark. There was a single carnation on my windshield, along with a little note - Al asked me if he could treat me to ice cream that night. No huge romantic date. Not even a rose. But THIS was the moment when I realized what love was - I sat in my car and cried, sobbed, huge amazing tears. This is what it was like to be loved. And I loved Al. I knew it. . . .finally! (Now we affectionately refer to this as the moment that the blinders came off!)
We resumed our romantic relationship that night. When I told my family that I was dating Al, their response was, "It's about time!" From that point on, I never had any doubts that Al was the "ONE". I have never second-guessed our relationship. Al is my soul-mate and I'm so incredibly grateful that he didn't give up on me. And that the Lord helped to me to recognize what true love was.
We were engaged in June of 1996, and married in November, Thanksgiving weekend, 1996.

(L-R: J, T, J, H, Al & Me, Best Man, D, and Maid of Honor)
I love this picture (sorry it's not the best quality - I had to scan it in). This epitomizes our relationship and our deep friendships. We love to have fun. We love to laugh. And we actually went bowling on our wedding day, and scored matching (albeit pathetic) scores of 77.
That's my story and I'm stickin' to it.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Florence Nightingale I'll Never Be

What do YOU do when faced with a crisis?

Here's what I do when my 13-year-old neighbor comes to my house with blood gushing from her foot. I grab a towel, ask Al to bring some ice, and tell Hope to get me the phone. I get Rachel's foot wrapped and elevated. I find out how it happened - she was running down the stairs and caught her toe on the railing, splitting two of her toes apart (OUCH!) - and I call her parents (who are visiting with friends) to relay the information to them. I take a look at the wound and inform them that it may need stitches.

What do I do next? I break out into a cold sweat, start feeling nauseated, and my ears start ringing. I sit down and then I lie down on the floor. My husband comes in and wonders who needs more first aid - Rachel or me. I do NOT pass out, but I come as close as I possibly can.

In the end, I do what I'm able to do what is necessary. And that's about it.

The Girls' New Bedroom!

Ahhh, it's finally finished. And here are the photos to prove it!




I repainted their shelves. I used the same colors as the shoe pockets hanging on the door and some matching storage benches.

This is their little "clubhouse" space under Hope's bed. I will hang a curtain at the opening so they can have some privacy. See those cute little storage benches? I found them at Meijer for $16 apiece; they are assemble-yourself, 2-compartment storage benches that hold up to 150 lbs. Pretty neat, huh? I based all the accent colors on these benches and the matching shoe pockets.

I redecorated their lamp, using the same colors. I was kind of a hack. If you look closely, you can see that the spray paint didn't stay where it was supposed to. I used puff paint to accent the flowers, and then I hot-glued buttons into the middle of the flowers.

I had found this shelf for Joy several months ago. She is such a collector, so I wanted her to have a place to put all her stuff. I painted it to match the room, and she has already started filling it. What's funny is that the white paint has already chipped near the bottom. . . oh well, I think it looks "antiqued."

Yes, this is a LOUD dresser. Oh well. This is the Pepto Bismol Paint I wrote about last week. It came in handy. Hope hates the dresser, but she will have to live with it. At least until I feel like painting again.

I also made them each their own French memo boards, which I haven't posted yet. Those, combined with the huge corkboard we hung, means that they are no longer allowed to tape anything to the walls. I will take pics of the memo boards once they are up.

This was a lot of fun. But I think I've had enough painting and decorating for quite some time.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Things No Mother Should Ever Have to See

So we started clearing out the girls' room in order to start the big makeover.

First it was all the toys. Have I mentioned I hate clutter??? Well, children are the top producers of clutter. So, it's not just the Polly Pocket box. It's every stinkin' little piece of Polly Pocket's clothing, down to her 1/8"long shoes, most of which, by the way, were NOT in the box. Disassembled pieces of Polly P's cruise ship furniture. Polly's accessories - purses, hats, cell phone, etc. Oh, yes, I had the kids do the toy clean up, but those are the things that I found under the beds and stuffed in corners. Apparently Polly is pretty scatterbrained because she keeps leaving stuff lying all over the girls' room.

Ok, so after the toys, then there was junk - candy wrappers, wads of gum stuck on the back of beds, shreds of paper from journals, rubber bands, paper clips, scissors, markers, pencils, and on and on and on. What on earth???

Then we started moving furniture and discovered the truly gruesome. I found a dried up strawberry with nice dried up mold still stuck to it. It left a nice strawberry stain on the carpet. A dried up carrot. Months-old stinky underwear. Gobs and gobs of hairy dust. Does anyone know if that statistic is actually true? That 85% of household dust is dead skin cells? Ewwww. And boogers. I'm embarrassed to say that my children have indeed wiped boogers on the walls, and do you know what? It's really hard to scrape dried boogers off the wall. And yeah, I wanted to get them off so there wouldn't be little booger-shaped clumps under the new paint. The ballerina carpet has one corner that I believe the cats have used for an alternate litter box - I highly doubt I'll be getting much for that at my yard sale. And when I stand over the vent in my girls' room, I can smell the faint odor of pee wafting up from the innards of the house. . . .I don't even want to know.

How can such sweet little creatures as girls create such disgusting messes? My poor husband is totally disillusioned about little girls. Where are the sweet-as-sugar, pig-tail wearing, innocent-grinning little cherubs he thought he was getting? They turned out to be burping, farting, booger-wiping, stinky-footed creatures.

I'm hoping to do a thorough carpet cleaning after the painting is done. And the paint we chose is Dutch Boy "Refresh", which is supposed to have odor control. Cool huh?

I hope it works.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

My Apologies

This is my favorite coffee mug, the one I use almost every day. It is BIG, it is feminine, and best of all, I love the saying on the front.
However, I need to apologize to my friends out there. If you're having trouble losing weight, it's probably my fault!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Oedipus Complex?

I've been wanting to post a picture of this cool craft my kids did. They spent an entire morning working on this quietly. It was quite amazing that they collaberated without any fighting. It is a family mail center, and they even put moving flags on each one to signal when family members have mail. Once they had their mail center up and running, the kids wrote several notes to each other and put them in envelopes and put them in each other's mailboxes. It kept them busy for a good part of the day. It also drew them closer, I think, because they were writing nice things to each other.

Here's the funny part. Evan wrote a letter to me today, put it in my mailbox, and then told me that I had mail. I opened my letter and this is what my 4-year-old wrote to me:

I have to laugh because I know where this came from, and it's definitely nothing "inappropriate". A few days ago, Joy came in from playing outside and her face was beat red from running around. I told her that she was too hot and that she should sit down and drink some water to cool off. Evan took his cue from this interchange and wrote her a note about it the next day. His note said, "You R Hot." We all laughed maniacally at this because it seemed such a funny thing for him to say. Evan matter-of-factly said, "Joy was hot last night." But of course, since he got a laugh out of us, he continues to write notes to everyone in the family with the same message:

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Pride Goes Before the Fall

My friend Essie, The Accidental Mommy just posted about her "best" parenting ideas from her life before children. And then she invited readers to do the same. So, here goes.

I ALWAYS wanted to be a Mom, and I ALWAYS wanted gobs and gobs of kids. I was the town babysitter for almost all of Daggett and Stephenson, thriving metropolises of the UP. I taught preschool for 9 years before actually becoming a mom. I attended - and even facilitated - teacher and parent training sessions. I had plenty of experience in how to handle children.

So, with all that under my belt, of course I had all the skills necessary to get my own children to obey me. I had perfected the use of the "I" message: "Jimmy, I feel concerned when you use that flame-thrower in school." I could identify the "goals of misbehavior": attention-seeking, revenge, struggle for power, feelings of helplessness, and the 5th, less-well-known goal, which is simply to be a PITA.

And as you would guess, all that training and experience came crashing down the first time my first child defied me. I had not a clue what to do. Hence, I have succeeded in getting my children to throw tantrums in public, to speak in an obscenely disprespectful manner to me, and to leave major portions of our home in a maelstrom.

However, I do believe I have discovered a way to actually speak to my children and direct them in such a way that they will obey! Please try some of these in your own home and give me your feedback. I'm considering writing a book on this revolutionary method.

First, a few things to remember: You must give children clear and comprehensible direction. You must also make sure that what you are asking of them is well within their capabilities.

Here are some examples, which I believe you can modify and use in your own parenting endeavors:

"Timmy, I would feel very happy if you would jump rope in the living room. And please do it as close as possible to the lamp, because picking up the broken shards of glass will make me even more happy."

"Sally, please go outside, without any clothes on, in the rain, and paste mud over your entire body. When you have done that, please come back inside and crawl upstairs to the bathtub and please make sure that you grind some globs of mud into the carpet."

"Ronny, would you please eat a whole bag of cheetos, 7 chocolate chip cookies, and 2 1/2 bags of Skittles before dinner? And if you throw up, would you please try to make it to the toilet?"

You see, what we really need to do is set our children up for success by asking them to do what we know they are fully able to do.

How hard is that?

Monday, May 4, 2009

Soccer Mom

So, today my girls had soccer practice. They're involved in a Parks and Rec team, a very low-key activity with the main goal being for the children to have fun. And really, that's about all I've seen so far - not much skill-building going on there. I tend to think like my friend Annie, who recently shared her Curmudgeonly Considerations on a similar topic. They really aren't learning many soccer skills, such as how to actually make your foot come into contact with the ball. At least they're having fun.

But tonight, the soccer coach decided that at the end of practice, the children should play a scrimmage against their parents. In her words, she thought it would be "fun". Well I don't necessarily agree with her definition of fun, because in my estimation, it would be more in the category of torture. I hate playing sports. I guess it would be more accurate to say that I am deeply tormented by memories of any attempt at playing sports throughout my life. I had extremely bad experiences of gym class from the earliest elementary years all the way through 8th grade. You have no idea how heartily I rejoiced once I finished Jr. High and I was no longer required to participate in Physical Education.

The year 1976 was an Olympic year, so our gym teacher thought it would be "educational" to set up gymnastics equipment. I really have no memory of any of the other equipment besides the rings. For some idiot reason, the rings were suspended about 20 feet off the ground. OK, so it was probably not quite that high, but I was in Kindergarten so I was only about 3 feet tall and everything looked really high to me. We had to climb up on a small platform to reach the rings. The platform was high enough to scare me, but then my teacher had to hoist me up on the rings and make me do a somersault. And I'm sure I was visibly terrified because I knew at any moment I was going to plummet back to earth with an ungraceful splat. However, the teacher made me do it anyway. You know I could probably go back and sue that gym teacher for all the emotional distress that he or she caused me, if I could remember his or her name.

In about 2nd grade, Ms. PE teacher had the brilliant idea to teach us basketball, and by teaching I mean she simply said "Play." So, I had no stinkin' clue how to dribble a ball or what responsibilities that players in different positions had. We just had to play, and it appeared to me that everyone else knew what they were doing except me. So, when we had basketball days in gym class, I would conveniently excuse myself to go to the bathroom until gym was over. I think my teacher eventually caught on, but it still never occurred to her to actually teach us some darn basketball skills.

In 5th grade, I tried to sprain my ankle during dogdeball season. I would run really fast down the gravel road and purposely step in the potholes. I used to deliberately irritate my older brother so he would inflict some kind of brotherly agony upon me, and then I would shout, "go for the ankle!" I once had to get a plantar wart removed, and I asked the doctor to write a note excusing me from PE for the rest of the year. He didn't. I even tried climbing up on our gigantic console TV set and jumping off. But it was all for naught, as I was still forced to participate in the misery of team sports.

Even in college, a friendly game of volleyball with my dearest friends would throw me into a panic. I could usually hit a volleyball with some degree of consistency as long as I was not involved in an actual game. But if the ball ever came to me during a game, I was either
completely immobile, or I was flailing around like an injured animal. And then of course, I would say some dumb thing like "the sun was in my eyes," or sometimes I would choose the simpler option which was to feign death.

Suffice it to say, I have never had any desire to participate in team sports, even for "fun". Because although it may be "fun" to some people, I'd rather have one of my limbs severed.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Please According Directions

Today is my hubby's birthday. He is just a big kid, so it's pretty easy to find a gift to make him happy. I bought him an authentic action remote control helicopter. It's not every day that you find funny material to write about in an owner's manual, but oh, my heavens! I busted a gut laughing at some of these instructions that came with the helicopter. They were obviously written and translated by someone who did not have a firm grasp on the English language. (Not trying to be culturally insensitive here: When I was in the Philippines, I used to get confused about the Filipino phrase for "Good afternoon", and instead, greet people by calling them a beautiful Japanese woman.) I just found these quite humorous.

Here are a few excerpts from the manual, which I took directly from the manual:

Please according to the manual's order to proceeding operation.

Turn on the transmitter power, the state indicator light begin to slowly twinkling.

Please choose to fly in an indoor roomily place.

Please make sure that ambiences before fly.

The fanner and air-condition cannot blowing to airplane.

The helicopter will take off difficulty or the height of fly is not enough when with weak batteries.

Do not make the helicopter crashing or serious strike from upper air.

Never throw batteries in a fire, to avoid unexpected danger.

Use a screwdriver to loosen screws on the battery case in anti-clockwise.

Finally, accompanying a picture of an adaptor that (obviously?) doesn't come with the helicopter, here is the caption: Adaptor, moreover purchase.

I hope you laugh today!