Wednesday, February 8, 2012 in humour

Who knew washing your pillow was so difficult?

So we got a new mattress this week. This lead to a bunch of jokes all over twitter when I said we were off to test mattresses. (“Excuse me sir, ma’am.. we’re going to have to ask you to leave.”) AND! Best part? The sales guy knew what WordPress was. This after explaining on please do not call us for a delivery before 9am, we work at home any time after that is just dandy. Also he was just beside himself when I tested a smaller chair and exclaimed, “Hey! They have chairs for Hobbits!”. He had just that weekend marathoned all the LOTR movies.

So, we are best buds now. AKA following each other on social networks.

Anyway, back to my point. Ron and I had a semi lovely night’s sleep on our new bed, since we took turns sleeping while the other one lay awake listening to snoring. From the deep sleep.

After that, I decided that maybe I could wash my lumpy pillow (I only bought it last year) and fluff it up some. Maybe it was the yelling and the loud washer-stopping noise or the smell of burnt rubber when I went into the laundry room-slash-back hall, but the pillow (which did not soak up water at the begging of the cycle) had soaked up half the water by the end and refused to be spun out. It;s like they had lined the pillow in oilcloth. I could hardly lift it.

I did manage to get my workout in squeezing out what I could and dragging it over to the nearby bathroom sink, where I squeezed some more and inadvertently discovered the sink is not caulked to the counter top. Bonus cleaning around the sink then.

Then finally in frustration at the idea of being there all night and/or sleeping on a damp pillow I grabbed a pair of scissors and cut a small line along the edge of a seam.

and *POOF* it let out air like a vacuum sealed bag of.. well something anyway. It was astounding. I could pour water out of it.

Eventually I put it back in the washer for a spin but it was too heavy to manage without the washer trying to disassemble itself.

So I put the middle of the pillow on the top of the agitator thing, balanced it in place with one hand and stuck my finger in the lid hole to trick the washer into thinking the lid was closed so it would spin.

And it worked.

And I still have all my fingers.

Next time I think my pillow needs a wash I think I will just go buy one.

Thursday, May 19, 2011 in humour

The Peanut Butter Incident

You know how there are times when your blog goes quiet because nothing much is going on? That’s usually when something happens. I go through these cycles of work work work which is usually interspersed with too tired to think let alone be coherent. Top that off with a little “my mother is coming up to visit and expects easter dinner” and you have the perfect storm.

Also, most of my immediate family has heard the story already, so I’ve suffered the razzing in private already. I can take laying it bare for the internet. (to be fair, my twitter followers heard about it too, cuz really. It’s a doozy.)

So there I was. Tired. Overheated and frantic for some OCD reason. I was up, cranky, hit my work stuff fast then set to cleaning my house. But first! I remembered I had to stop and eat breakfast.

For the past few months, breakfast has been peanut butter on toast. We did buy an entire 10kg bucket of pb remember… On this particular day, the last small jar in the cupboard was not, in fact, one of the ones we filled from the bucket, but the last jar we bought at the store. And it had settled.

If you’ve never bought natural peanut butter before let me telly you this – it separates. The oil goes to the top and the crushed peanuts sink to the bottom. It is not a delicious smooth creamy jar of peanutty spread, but an ocean of oil brimming over the top with a Titanic sinking rock underneath.

I got out my trusty butter knife and started to stir. It slopped. My arm got tired. And really – stirring with a knife? Not the most brilliant of ideas.

“I know just the thing,” my brilliant sleep-deprived and anxious self thought, “I’ll just use the mixer.”

yes, yes I did think that was a reasonable conclusion to solve my immediate problem. I got out our little hand mixer, stuffed one beater in it – because two won’t fit in the jar, duh – and stabbed it in the quasi-solid jar of peanut butter.

I turned it on.

It was hard going at first. The motor complained and the oil sloshed over the side. Some of it was mixing, but very sloppy near the top.

And then my hand slipped.

You know how in movies dire things happens and the camera slows down? It was just like that. I saw my hand trying to hold the slippery oiled jar. I saw the beater not spinning down deeper, but higher into the goopy bits. I saw my other hand (TRAITOR!) lift the mixer a bit.

And then we go back to full speed as peanut butter started to cover every available surface in the immediate vicinity. The electric kettle. The toaster. The teapot. The mixer itself. Me. The counter.

My shirt.

My slippers.

The floor.

Did I mention my mother was on her way? No? With Carl, and San too?

“Crap.” I said.

Meaghan came running in the room, yelling. She ran out again, then came back in. click click click. The kid got her camera for evidence.

My husband, lovely man that he is, was outside. Of course just then I heard him come in. “Don’t,” I yelled, “don’t you say a word.”

Smart man that he is, he shook his head at me and left.

Eventually I got it cleaned up, had people over later than I thought, and laughed about it. In the retelling to Sarah though, she reminded me this is not unusual. “What?” I said, “I’m not that bad!”

“Mom,” she reminded me, “The stove CAUGHT ON FIRE.”

“Hey, that bread turned out fine after your father put them out. And we lowered the rack.”

From the other room, Meaghan tried to be helpful. “You put a SPOON in the BLENDER! With NO LID!”

“But I was pregnant!” I whined. “All I wanted was a milkshake.”

It’s okay though. They love me anyway. At least they keep eating my food. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Tuesday, September 8, 2009 in family, humour

And then there’s the other side of the family

Over the weekend, the slog through the mountain of work was interrupted by a quick visit from my mom’s parents and my uncle, their chauffer for the day.

It was quick, maybe 30 minutes tops. They had to get on the road, see. Long drive. I met them at the back door, out the carport, in my sock feet, as I usually do when visitors are milling in the driveway wondering what door to approach first.

My grandmother asks lots of questions – what’s the dirt for, why do the neighbors have a pile of pumpkins on their front lawn, what are those satellite dishes for, do we get free cable, what happened to this flower garden anyway. I explain a few things as best I can, explain the new septic field that’s going in and why. Behind us neighbors complained even though it’s not our fault the lawn is wet.

My uncle Todd – large, rough & burly, day-old whiskers on his chin – looked around back. “Well no wonder the *** lawn is ***** wet, the ****** lake is higher, *****!”

Yep, that’s Todd. He hugged me too, which was surprising until I realized he was whispering “HELP ME!” in my ear.

Anyway, after a few more storytelling bits about the septic and my grandmother tsk tsking, shaking her head and declaring it an awful shame, we went in.

I did get her toured around the house without too much incident, Emma helping. It reminded her of other houses in other times.

“My, my, look at these railings. Why I haven’t seen these since…”

“Well, would ya look at that..”

“My God, what a shame they let some of this happen.”

“Can you imagine? Just imagine how nice this house was”

“Oh my land, I had wallpaper like this back in..”

Ron had kept Papa busy while I shuffled Nanny carefully up and down the stairs. “Back stairs, too? Oh my land..”

And “My goodness, this will be a lot of work. Just think, you finished that other house – it was so nice – and then had to move, what a shame.”

Papa soon declared “Well Mert – time to go,” and off he went, slower now. They’re both very grey. I was struck by how much they’ve aged, how much slower they move.

Back to the car and goodbyes. My grandmother looked over the backyard one more time.

“Them’s a buncha assholes.”

Yep, they still got it.

Saturday, January 26, 2008 in humour, linky love

Do’s and don’t for babies

Man, I sure could have used this advice way back in the day. I had to figure it all out on my own. Who knew?

And when you click on thru and see the pics, it sure does explain a lot. Especially why we called the first couple of kids “practise”.

(HT: friends on LJ)

Tuesday, January 8, 2008 in all about me, education, family, holiday fun, humour, linky love

Chocolate and the War of the Roses

Before I get too far into the story below, I should tell you that my father’s side of the family is British. As in, they emmigrated from England to Canada in 1956 and they all have accents (mostly). And ones I can’t really hear most of the time. I can slip into one at will, too. I’ve found when my half-deaf grandfather can’t make out what I’m saying, I just rephrase it to be more British, with an accent and then suddenly he understands me.

My longish point there is we still have family “over there”, and every Christmas we all exchange cards and our cousins send over a monstously huge 1 kilo bar of English Cadbury’s milk chocolate. It is slightly different than the Canadian Cadbury’s chocolate, is why.

So last Thursday, there I was, out and about doing my shopping. (See? The British phraseology is slipping in there. Between this and the over-indulgence of Jane Austen over the holidays, we should just pack our bags and head back to the Queen.) The children were naturally with me, and we split up when we went to the mall.

Sarah came running up to me as I was once again perusing the scrapbook aisle of the Great Canadian Dollar Store.

“Mom! In Shopper’s they have a big Cadbury bar! And it’s on SALE! And it’s the LAST ONE!”

At this point we had no word about the annual chocolate from England, only that it was somewhere between here and there. Ron had said if ever we saw one of those bars here, we should grab it. We *had* seen it before, but it was elusive. Always when we didn’t have the extra cash, or it was heavily pre-holiday priced.รƒโ€šร‚ย  I hemmed and hawed a bit, waffled some more, and in the end got it. The clerk even thanked me profusely for “getting rid of it”.

On the way home, we stopped at the post office to pick up the mail. Sarah came back to the car grinning, carrying an armload of packages. She tossed one to me. “Guess what Mom? It’s from England!” It was suspiciously chocolate-bar sized. Now, normally the cousins send the whole thing to my aunt, and she divvies it up and sends along our portion. But I suddenly thought, what if it had been done on their end?

I laughed and laughed.

When we got back to the house, I opened up the parcel, and instead of chocolate, there was a book. I gotta tell you, I actually love new books *more* than chocolate. It’s true. Even better, it was a book our cousin had co-authored, AND it was on a portion of British history. Enclosed was a note stating he hoped we liked it.

I think I may have swooned.

The Battle of St Albans tells the story of two epic battles during the War of the Roses. These took place in the city of St Albans, which not only stands today, but that’s where some of my family now lives. The authors help clear up some of the confusion and legend surrounding the War of the Roses, explaining the political landscape of the time. They bring the battlefields to life, thorough series of diagrams, modern-day photographs of actual places and generous descriptions of the time and places. There’s even pictures of reenactments of soldier’s uniforms and fighting techniques, even snippets of text from documents from that time frame, in theรƒโ€šร‚ย  participant’s own words.

As Emma and I flipped through the book, we seriously got lost in the 15th century. We were immersed. And I longed for England once again. Mike did a bang-up job, and I’m sure our family could not have been more proud.
Back to the book – it’s jam-packed at 182 pages, 5.5″ x 8″ bound format and loads of b&w photos. By the time I got to the back cover, I was absolutely delighted to find it was part of a series of books based on all sorts of battles in Britain – all the way up through the Second World War. I immediately though of all our homeschooling and/or history buff friends who would *love* to get their hands on such books.

You can รƒโ€šร‚ย  and visit the publiser’s site, Pen and Sword books for more historic battles. I’ll be over here, curled up with the book, noshing on chocolate.

Friday, November 16, 2007 in humour, linky love, the world is crazy

I don’t think I can keep a straight face here

Hana Montana boot recal

Seriously. Seriously?!?! OH NOES! Some girls tripped while wearing these boots! QUICK! Get them off the shelves!!!

AAAHHHHHH!

“If your child has a pair of these boots, you should ignore her pleas to keep them and take them way immediately.”

I’m dyin’ here…

Please, people; USE YOUR BRAINS.