Monday, January 31, 2011

Pooping Stars

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One of my grandsons told me recently that he could poop stars.

Really. I'm not making his up. If you've read any of my previous blogs about my children and grandchildren, you will know I'm telling the truth. We are a creatively weird bunch of people.

But Kaden's comment got me thinking about the absurdity of the many ways people can alter their bodies. Multiple piercings, metal objects surgically implanted under the skin, various out-of-control hair styles and colors, pornographic body landscapes – the list goes on.

Don't get me wrong – I think some body art is OK. Creative expression can be beautiful. I happen to like some tattoos and piercings. My ears are pierced – three times in each ear. Some piercings, however, hurt just to look at them.

What bothers me the most, though, is unnecessary "cosmetic" surgery. I can see getting breast implants if your butt is so large, you look lopsided. I can see bald men getting hair implants if they think hair is necessary to feel better about themselves, but I cannot understand why surgeons feel it is ethically acceptable to defile a human body by placing metal protrusions all over it. Why not place metal cones in your buttocks if you want to look ridiculous?

Let's say I wanted to gold-plate pigeon droppings and then have them permanently implanted on the top of my nose. The way surgeries are today, I'm sure I could find some surgeon willing to perform any kind of ridiculous surgery I wanted.

Surgeries are getting so bizarre, in fact, I half expect the next new craze to be getting rectums cut into various shapes so people can poop out stars.

(Videos above are of my grandson, Kaden, singing a song he made up. And, since I'm showcasing one singing grandchild, I would also like to include my granddaughter, Audrey, singing her made-up "short" song.)

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Wednesday, January 19, 2011

In The Old Days – When We Wore Curlers


Back in the old days when I was growing up, we didn't have the necessities teenagers have today. Take blow dryers for instance – we didn't have them. We had hair dryers, monster contraptions that came with hoods and required us to sit for hours beneath them. 

What about flat irons, you ask? Are you kidding? People with curly hair used actual irons to straighten their hair.

So when it came to days like my high school Homecoming dance, if we weren't going to an actual hair salon, we would have to set our hair on curlers, archaic circular tubes that we stuck on our heads with bobby pins.

Either that, or we would have to wind our hair around hot pink sponge rollers, which we would have to leave in our hair overnight (or for a couple of days) to give our hair ample time to dry.

We often saw little old ladies in grocery stores with rods in their heads or hair strands tightly wound in bobby pins, but we never saw teenagers walking around looking like their parents or (gasp!) their grandparents. We were too cool for that.

Which is why my Senior Homecoming was so traumatic – not only for me, but also for one of my sisters and two of our friends.

We were driving a Corvair (for some bizarre reason Chevy no longer makes that model) as we ran some necessary errands before the big dance. My boyfriend and his father just recently had taken the engine out to repair it and then put the engine back in the shiny black Corvair, so we were set to go.

My sister, friends, and I had never before gone out in public with our hair in curlers, but we needed something for the dance and we figured that since we weren't actually going where anybody other than our friends would see us, nobody would notice us.

Shortly after I (the driver) picked everybody up, and as we were driving down a 2-lane highway four blocks from my home, the car suddenly came to a screeching halt.

"Why'd you do that?" everybody yelled at me.

"I didn't. Maybe the brakes broke."

Great! Now what? I couldn't get out of my car with rollers in my hair ALONE, so I decided that I had to make my embarrassment a group effort!

"Everybody get out with me."

Screams came from all around me. "NO! I don't want anybody to see me like this!" and "I am NOT taking even ONE STEP outside this car!"

"Well, what about ME?"

Nobody cared, so I did what anybody who drives a car does while traffic lines up behind her – I got out of my car after banging my beer-can-sized curlers on the hood (OUCH!), looked directly at the people in the cars lined up behind me, faced my palms skyward, and shrugged.

I then thought, after having seen my boyfriend move the car with ease, why not move the car myself? How hard could it be? After all, this car – on wheels – weighs probably only around 30 pounds, right?

"Everybody get out. I can't move it with you guys in it."

With despicable loathing shooting from their eyes, they each climbed out of the car. There we were, four teenagers dressed in curlers standing in the middle of the road, pushing the car with our butts. Nothing happened.

Angry drivers passed us and a couple of guys, after watching our ineptitude, got out of their cars to help move the poor excuse for a car off the road.

It wouldn't budge. Wimps!

Then two burly truck drivers, coming from the opposite direction, pulled off to the side of the road after witnessing the wimps' inability to move a CORVAIR off the road and crossed the road to assist us.

It still wouldn't budge. Which was funny considering that normally you could lift a Corvair with your pinkie and it would float like a feather. Who was the wimp now?

But these two bulky men refused to accept the fact that they could not move my lightweight Corvair, so they got down on all fours and looked under the car. Guess what they found?

No, really – guess. I'll wait.

Can't guess? OK, I'll tell you. The engine that my boyfriend and his father had put back into the car had fallen out of the car and had become embedded into the pavement!

In the days before cell phones, we had to walk home with curlers in our hair on the day that NOBODY was supposed to see us until the dance – to get help.

Oh, yes, those were the good old days.

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Monday, January 10, 2011

The Day My Kids Asked to Wear My Clothes

Raising kids alone has its perks, because the single parent who is left home to care for the kids is also the parent who witnesses all of the funny things their kids do and say. I may not have gotten the house OR the car, but I got my kids and for that I have always been grateful.

One day, when my three youngest kids were teenagers, I found one of my daughters, Lindsey, rummaging through my closet. None of my kids had ever before even opened the door. Perplexed, I just had to ask what she was looking for.

"Clothes," she said.

WOW! Was I flattered. To think that one of my kids would want to wear something of mine was amazing. Nobody before had EVER asked to wear anything of mine. As a matter of fact, everybody had always complained about my lack of fashion sense. And now, my daughter actually wanted to wear something I owned.

So I was feeling pretty good about myself until my daughter put the whole situation into perspective when she added, "Tomorrow is grunge day at school."

And – it continues:

Just this past weekend, when one of my daughters came to my home in Illinois (I am still in Virginia visiting my son and his family) to visit another daughter of mine (Brittney) who, along with her husband and children, moved in with me a couple of summers ago, Lindsey looked through my closet to find something to wear.

Surprisingly, Lindsey found something she liked, and then went into the kitchen to tell Brittney, "Wow! Mom has some really cute clothes in there!"

Funny thing is, when my daughter-in-law once came to visit, she had said exactly the same thing.

Well, guess what happened when Brittney and her family moved in with me? She didn't have enough room in her closets to fit all of her clothes, so she put a bunch of them in mine.

I guess I still don't have any fashion sense.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Mommy's Kiss

My grandson, Zac, was upstairs for quite a while this morning, so when he finally came downstairs, I asked him if he was sleeping.

"No, I awake." This child is NOT a morning person. If his parents allowed him, he would stay up until 2 a.m. and sleep until noon.

"So what were you doing upstairs?" I wanted to know.

"Kissing Mommy."

Aww. Isn't that sweet? He loves kissing his mommy. As a matter of fact, Zac and Michelle play a kind of game kissing back and forth.

Sounds really sweet, doesn't it? Or does it? Because while I was thinking about how adorable that comment was and how I couldn't wait to relate to Mommy that Zac had told me what he was doing, he added,  "Yeah, it was gross."

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Monday, January 3, 2011

Surprises in Small Packages – My Hilarious Christmas Present

Celebrating Christmas with my son and his family is a rare occasion, so when the opportunity arose this year allowing me to spend Christmas with Greg and his family, I was thrilled – a bittersweet thrill, because it meant I couldn't spend Christmas with the rest of my family, but I had missed so many years of Greg being gone to Japan and Iraq (4 times) and other parts of the world, I really couldn't pass up the invitation.

(As much as I would love to spend holidays with the entire family, the likelihood that all of us will ever get to spend the holidays in one place at one time again is pretty slim – though I am hopeful).

Anyway, here I was, having Christmas with my son and his family, watching them open gifts, taking videos and pictures, when my son and daughter-in-law told me how sorry they were that I didn't have a gift to open.

I didn't care. I didn't really want anything, but they had already ordered something for me – it just hadn't arrived yet, so Michelle showed me an online picture of my gift – a pair of boots. I like the sweater look in boots, so I was already looking forward to getting the gift I told them I didn't want.

The funny thing about my shoe size is that I can wear a 3 in children size or a 4 and a half in adult size. Finding adult shoes in my size, though, is nearly impossible.

Michelle explained to me that she couldn't get the boot in a 4 and a half, so she got me a size 5. Because of my persistently swollen right foot (since November, 1999), size 5 is more comfortable for my right foot anyway. I just have to be careful not to fall out of my left shoe.

I was surprised she was able to find it in a size 5 since most stores, including online stores, don't usually carry sizes that small, but I was fairly certain that if one existed, Michelle would be able to find it. Now I really was looking forward to the expected deliver date of December 28th.

Everybody, especially Kaden, was eagerly awaiting my gift arrival day. When my gift arrived, we opened the box and found the size 5 boots (see in photo above). Good things really do come in small packages, and this one came with a surprise.

Who knew how many different size 5 boots we could order? Look at my beautiful brand new baby boots!

P.S. HUGE CONFESSION – After all of my chemo infusions, I started taking a chemo pill every day, which, along with the weather, has contributed to my skin becoming so cracked and dried and my nails so brittle, I had to give myself a Photoshop pedicure and a smooth-tool brush around my toes to cover up the unsightly areas of my foot. I missed some areas, but nobody ever gave me any awards for my Photoshop skills. (Admit it – aren't you impressed by the color match between the boots and the fake nail polish?) By the way, we took back the boots.

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