Archive for March, 2012

Jeopardy question: What is $16.95?

Answer:  The cost to send up to four pounds of anything to Hong Kong.

Note that the “small flat rate box” and the “padded letter-size flat rate mailer” both go for $16.95.  The latter holds more than the former, but you will have to completely enshroud your package in packing tape to guarantee that it won’t rip open in transit.


Jeopardy question: What is “scrubbing the whole thing with Comet cleanser?”

Answer:  The only way to remove several hundred streaks of blue ink from the inside of the clothes dryer.

Note that if your arms are length-challenged, this process can be facilitated by requiring the person who unknowingly sent the pen through the laundry – and whose clothes appear to have miraculously emerged unscathed – to climb bodily into the dryer to scrub the back face of the drum.

Jeopardy question: What is six?

Answer:  The number of times I had to mop the floors after a lidless water bottle (in which several large jaw-breaker-ish candies has been soaking) fell off the dining room desk.

Note that, because I inadvertently stepped in the dried-up sticky mess as I was doing the first mopping, I managed to successfully track it into Jessica’s room, the upstairs hall, our bedroom, and our bathroom.  Further note that it is possible to mop all the wood floors in our house six times in one day, even when allowing them to dry completely in between each mopping, but for the sake of maintaining one’s sanity, this is not recommended.

How I love spring!

We are currently in the very middle of my favorite time of year!  The redbuds are in bloom, the plum trees gave their brief but stunning display, the dogwoods are lovely, and we don’t have to run the heat or the air.  What could be nicer?  Well, this afternoon I took a walk and wade down at the creek, and there, perched several feet off the ground, in a clump of dead leaves that landed in a bare-limbed twiggy little shrub during last week’s rains, was coiled some 24 inches of juvenile snake; copperhead to be exact.  He was sunning himself, and I was able to get within a foot of him.  What a treat!  I only wish I’d had my camera with me.

I have about a dozen little tomato seedlings out on the porch, right beside about a dozen little red pepper seedlings.  In fact, I should probably go bring them in for the night.  I have high hopes for these little guys.  Now I just need to find enough pots and buckets to plant them in, and some way to get them up off the ground so they’ll drain properly. O, the joys of container gardening.

The nicest thing about spring is that it keeps coming around for me to enjoy, year after year.


One point for the YMCA

I don’t give out Y points very often and so thought this event was blog-worthy.

I had paid for Andrew’s March Parkour classes, which meet on Saturday mornings.  Then we learned that his coach would be unavailable for at least three of the five Saturdays in March, so I asked the gymnastics coordinator for a refund.  She said she could credit our account, which she did.

Today he went for his Wednesday afternoon tumbling class, for which we pay $8.  When I went to the desk to pay, I told the receptionist that the gymnastics coordinator had given us a credit for some of the March Parkour classes, and could that be applied to today’s tumbling fee.

Bear in mind that in three years (off and on) of dealing with the Y, I don’t think I have EVER been able to have one employee look up something that some other employee put in their computer and have it actually be there, but today, miracle of miracles, the receptionist looked up our account, said we had a $20 credit, and applied $8 of it to Andrew’s tumbling class fee.

A non-stressful interchange at the YMCA front desk; something new and different!

Close call

Tonight I challenged Andrew to a game of Gin Rummy.  I warned him in advance that since I have played a lot more than he has, I was likely to win.  He did not seem to share that logic.

I pulled out to an early lead of something like 71 to 35, but then, over a series of three or four hands, he pulled back to tie it at 83 all.  A game is 100.  I ginned in the final hand for a bonus of 20, but he only had five points in his hand, which was quite commendable.  So my prediction came true, but the guy is awfully close to catching me.

He’s close to catching me in another way, too.  I am fairly certain that by a week from Thursday, he will have pushed me back down to being, once again, the shortest person in the family.  I’m thinking I haven’t been in that position for about seven years – when the girls had passed me, but I could still look down on Josiah and Andrew.  Now I won’t be able to look down on anyone, and I’m sure there’s a spiritual lesson there.  = )


Took a nice walk with Andrew

We went across the bridge and down to the creek on that side, by Roxanne’s house, and then followed the old road/path down around the backside of the cow pasture all the way to the horseshoe bend.  We walked for about an hour all told, and we had some good conversation.  I have learned that he opens up much more when we’re walking or riding in the car or something, than just sitting at home.  It’s as if the doing/moving/going makes him more comfortable to share what he’s thinking.

One of his questions tonight was, “Mom, what would you do if our house burned down?”  We had left the oven preheating for pizza.  = )  I told him I’d make sure he was awake and out of the house (he’s a very heavy sleeper), and then if possible, I’d grab my computer.  He said, he’d collect, “all my money, and then some clothes, which I’d put in a bag, and my deodorant, and my wallet, and probably some of my things. . . ”  I told him that in a fire he wouldn’t have time to do all that; that it would be a matter of get and go in order to get out fast; that sometimes in a crisis situation, the most important thing – in fact the only thing – is just to keep living.  Then he said he’d just take his money and whatever else he could grab fast.

We talked more about money and the value of it and how we spend it and why.  All in all very interesting.

Also, it’s sucker season.  I wouldn’t know this, not being an angler at heart, but a good old boy was walking around the bridge the other morning and when I asked him what was up, he said he was looking for suckers.  I gathered that suckers were fish.  He pointed out a couple under the bridge.  He told me that he’d been over to this hole three mornings in a row, but someone had always beat him to it and fished them all out.  He was from Crane, which, according to google maps, is about a 48-minutes drive from here, and he’s been getting up at 5:30 AM to come over here for suckers.  His girlfriend told him not to come back without any, so he was fairly desperate.  It seems that people catch these suckers, clean them, and throw the rest of the fish back in the water, so the area around the bridge is full of trash and dead fish right now.  Yuck.  And down where Andrew and I were walking, at the main access point, there were dozens and dozens of dead fish in the water, right at the creek’s edge.  Of course, the crows and vultures and stuff will take care of them in a few days, but I didn’t get to wade like I wanted to.

Maybe tomorrow!