Sunday, December 25, 2011

Our house is the one that gave up on Christmas.

It was 30 minutes later, and I was still staring at the giant wall of lights.


What the heck, Wal Mart? It was still weeks before Christmas. You couldn't have sold out already.

Sighing, I gave in, and approached the register.

The girl working in the Christmas department was around 20 years old. She seemed pretty normal- you know, not drooling or anything. And when I walked up, she smiled in a friendly way.

"How can I help you today?"

"I'm looking for some outdoor Christmas lights. Just the single-strand kind."

She frowned. "I've never heard of those."

"...Um, just a strand of lights? You know, the white ones?"

"Huh. Let's look at our wall."

We walked back over.

"Do you mean icicle lights?"

"No, um, just a single strand. In a straight line."

She stared at me for a second. "Yeah, I've never seen those before."

"Really? Just outdoor ones. That you can use to outline stuff."

"Oh, like rope lights! In that plastic tube stuff!"

"Um, well, similar. Only not in a tube."


"People sometimes put them on their houses? Or on a wreath?"


"Here. See these icicle lights? Imagine that they don't have little icicles coming off them."


"No? Ok, uh, there! Mini lights. On a 50 strand. Imagine lights just like this, only bigger."

"Ohhh! Big lights. Like these giant bulb ones."

"No. Not giant ones."

I looked around helplessly. By now, there was a crowd of people around us, all looking for the same kind of lights. I assume.

One lady jumped in. "You know, like on a Christmas tree? I just need indoor ones for mine."

The girl frowned in confusion. "No, Christmas tree lights are always green."

And then I gave up on humanity.

So if you stop by tonight, look for the house that is all kinds of festive. Lights on the house, the bushes, the trees, the porch. Lighted wreaths in every window. Three lighted deer on the front yard.

And then look next door. Because our house is the one that gave up on Christmas.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

If only I had a secret credit card...OH, WAIT.

American Express sent me a letter saying they've updated my address. You know, for my credit card. Which is awesome, except I DON'T HAVE AN AMERICAN EXPRESS CREDIT CARD.

It looked pretty official. But I knew it had to be a scam. Like that time when I sent you all "free" movie tickets.

I mentioned this whole tricky, spammy scheme to Kurt, and his reaction was...unexpected.

"Oh yeah, I might have signed you up for one a year ago. For skymiles. I didn't tell you though. Then I shredded it, so you couldn't use it."


...I just don't know what to fight about first.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Sleeping-Version-of-Kurt is a jerk.

What were you doing yesterday, at 1 in the morning? Because I was sleeping. Until THIS happened:

Sleeping-version-of-me is plotting revenge...

Thursday, December 1, 2011

I am so ashamed.

....I just bought the Big Mac Deal on Livingsocial.

And now I feel disgusting.

But you guys, it was SUCH a good deal.

So 4 months (and 20lbs) from now, I need you all to remind me of a few things:





Wednesday, November 23, 2011

How To End Christmas Gift Drama Before It Starts.

Hey guys, I am very excited. I interviewed one of my favorite people (my brother in law, Dave), about one of my favorite holiday products. Which happens to be free.

This might just change your life.

Hey Dave, sorry this took so long to set up. Also, sorry my questions are so boring. Feel free to spice them up if you want!

Hmmm... spice them up. Should I sprinkle in suggestive pictures of myself after each question?

YES. Wait, no. My inlaws might read this.  

What is the Wishlist Factory?

WishlistFactory is a free website that lets you share wishlists with groups of people, such as your family, your in-laws, close friends, etc. It's great for any holiday or celebration and it makes keeping track of what gifts everyone wants easy. This can be especially helpful during Christmas, when it's hard to keep track of who wants what, and who has already bought a certain gift for someone so you don't end up buying the same thing (duplicate gifts are usually a bad thing, unless it's money). WishlistFactory keeps track of all that stuff for you.  

Why did you create it?

I originally made the website for my wife, who is very very into Christmas. You could even say it's an obsession, but you didn't hear it from me. She loved buying gifts for everyone, but this usually involved calling everyone to find out what they wanted, which resulted in answers like "Uhh... I don't know... a snuggie?". Even worse, she'd find out later that someone else already bought that person a snuggie! This made my wife unhappy, and when my wife is unhappy, guess who has to be unhappy? Me. Really I made the website for myself, but that sounds selfish, so the official answer is "to make the holidays a little easier on my wife".  

What are your favorite features?

There's a lot of features that make sharing gifts with others easier, but I particularly like being able to claim gifts, so other people know to think twice about putting their grubby mitts on a gift I'm giving someone. You can also print out shopping lists for people, so you can remember what someone wants when you go to the store. I also like being able to sort gifts by price when I'm feeling cheap. That's nice too.

Of course WishlistFactory has all those other necessary features, such as uploading pictures of gifts from your computer or the web. You can also include a link with a gift so you people know exactly where to buy it online. But these features really aren't worth mentioning.  

What is Surprise Protection?

Let's say you want someone to get some lingerie for your grandma, a spunky gal. You can add the lingerie to her wishlist and she won't be able to see that you added it. Your Grandpa checks her wishlist and excitedly buys the slinky surprise and marks it as Purchased on her wishlist. Now everyone know what she's getting, and your grandma's none the wiser. That's surprise protection.  

How about the Desire Meter?

The Desire Meter is a fun little slider bar that lets you tell everyone in your groups how badly you want a certain gift. For instance, my 16-year-old brother-in-law has 60 gifts on his wishlist. Normally, I wouldn't know what to get him, but luckily he set the desire meter to 10 out of 10 on some gifts, so I know which gifts will be a hit. Now if I can only think of a way to come up with three hundred bucks for a leather trenchcoat...

Adding a Gift

What if I find something not on Kurt's list? How do I make sure no one else buys the same thing?

You can add gifts to other people's wishlists, and they'll never be able to see the gift, even though they can add gifts to their own wishlists. Then, you can set the gift's status at any time. You have several choices from Purchased(I bought the gift), Claimed(I'm going to get the gift, don't even think about it!), Too Expensive(I'm a cheapskate), and much more. Other group members can see these statuses so they know what's up.

Some gifts, of course, shouldn't be shared, Helena. For instance, that prescription strength deodorant you were planning on getting Kurt would fall under this category. I wouldn't worry about anyone else getting that for him, except for those who hang out with you, naturally.  

What if I have multiple groups using it- my family, and Kurt's family? How does that work?

You can belong to multiple groups, so you can have one for your family, and one for your in-laws. Anyone in a group you belong to is allowed to look at your wishlists. I'm thinking about adding more options, such as Secret Wishlists that only people of your choosing can access, but I haven't implemented that yet. Once I do, I think people will feel a little more comfortable showing off gifts that they might not want their in-laws to see. You know what I'm talking about.

Yeah. I think we all do.

Thanks Dave, for sharing your masterpiece! Which you can all check out at

Happy Thanksgiving you guys! I hope this makes your holidays a little bit easier.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

I just stood there.

What would you do if a little old man came up to you, and said;

"you shouldn't eat so much. You'd look better."

Because I just stood there in shock.

And then I wanted to cry.

It's been a rough week, you guys. And it's only Tuesday.

Monday, November 14, 2011

I need him to hate me. Any ideas?

"Why not?"

I stared at Kurt, confused.

"Because. It's dangerous."

"It was dangerous last time. But that didn't stop us. We climbed all the way out to the edge. Remember?"

"We were stupider then."

"We did not die."

"Look, I said no."

"Fine. You can watch. And I will have the adventure."

I turned to hop out onto the rock, but he quickly snatched my arm.

"I said no. You can't do it."

"I did it before."

"But I love you more now."

I raised my eyebrow.

"That's how marriage works. I love you more now than I did a year ago. So I can't let you risk your life."

I raised both eyebrows.

"By the time you're 50 years old, I won't let you leave the house."

I stared at him in disbelief. Was he joking, or he was serious? Or maybe something in between? In the end, it didn't matter. He pulled me up onto the overlook, and that's as close as I got to the waterfall.

So now I need your help.

How can I make him hate me just a little bit more?

No really, guys. I need ideas. Maybe something along the lines of stop showering. Completely. And then drenching myself in Paris Hilton's perfume to cover up the smell.

Only, you know, less gross.

Monday, November 7, 2011

My newest, most delicious obsession

This week on "Thing I Can't Believe I Lived Without"

Franks Hot Sauce.

I want to bathe in this stuff.

Just grab a cup full, add some mozzarella, a little cream cheese, some ranch dressing, and Viola!

Perfect dipping sauce. Great for chicken, chips, bread, strawberries...

Well, maybe not strawberries.

But I was serious about the bathing.

What are you craving?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

...I haven't washed my jeans in a while.

"I don't think jeans get dirty. They just get more and more comfortable, and then they get smelly. But by then, you are tripping over them anyway, so you are kind of looking forward to washing them and sticking them in the dryer, so they will shrink. The next few days are a little muffin-top and wedgie-inducing, but then they loosen up, and it will be a good 3 months before they see the inside of the hamper again. You know?"

Kurt stared at me in silent horror.

He is so weird sometimes.

Monday, October 31, 2011

A Creepy Kidney

The ultrasound technician looked confused, and then surprised.

"That can't be right..."

But after a few minutes of looking, she turned to me and said;

"I can't find your kidney."


Wait, back up. Why was I getting an ultrasound? Am I pregnant? Who starts a story this way??

I guess I'll go back to when it all began.

My mom was 16 when she had one of her ovaries removed. She had really bad cysts, and the doctors decided to operate.

It was ok, though. She managed to have 5 kids, with her single remaining ovary.

But cysts? They run in my family.

As long as the pain goes away in a day or two, my doctor told me not to worry about them.

But when the pain had dragged on for 4 days, I started to get nervous.

Hence, the ultrasound technician.


"Good news! Your ovaries look normal. No abnormally large cysts or anything."

I smiled in relief. Surgery is something I'd love to avoid.

"Now I'm going to check out a few other things."

She checked out my left side, and then moved to my right. There she stopped. After a few minutes, she started to seem worried.

"That can't be right..."

Great. Just what everyone wants to hear when someone is looking at their insides.

"...I can't find your right kidney."

I swallowed hard. "Um, maybe it moved?"

"I'll check in a few other places.

5 minutes later, she found it.

"It's in your abdomen! See? Here is your heart valve. And right below it is your kidney."

I looked at the screen, and saw nothing but lumpy static.

"Here, let's look at the left side. That kidney is around back, where it's supposed to be. And your right's supposed to be tucked below your liver. But it's not. It's in front, kind of twisted into a funny position."

I just...I had no idea what to say.

"I have no idea if it's functional. But really, you only need one to live. And you've never had any problems before?"

I shook my head.

"Good. Well, we'll refer you to a kidney specialist. It might be fully functional. Who knows? Anyway, that's it. I'll let you get dressed."

I was beyond weirded out. But also kind of excited.

See? Proof that I'm special.

It's good to know, that's for sure. A sharp pain in my abdomen- I would never think "Oh hey, maybe it's my kidney." I'd probably just grab a laxative, and then die.

Also, if one of my enemies tries to stab me in the kidney, they will miss by a good foot and a half.

Built in stabbing-protection.

Tell me I'm not the only one with a weird body?

Thursday, October 20, 2011

That thin line between love and murder...

That judging kind of criticism- you know, the kind only a spouse can give? Makes me want to sit down and do absolutely nothing. For the rest of my life. Out of spite.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Faux Hawk

One night, I convinced Kurt to let me play with his hair.

He keeps it so short. Which looks good, but I had this sneaking suspicion...

...and I was right. He can rock a faux hawk.

Too bad he won't ever do it in real life.


What do you think?

Also, is there an aspect of your man's appearance you wish he would let you tweak a little? His hair, his clothes, his scruff...?


Thursday, August 25, 2011

The Day The Romance Died.

"You know when you have to poop so bad, your whole body feels cold and shivery?"

I turned and stared, a horrified denial stuck in my throat.

"No? Well, that's why I'm shivering. As soon as we get there, I need to find a bathroom. Or things are going to get explosive."

And that last spark of magic withered and died.


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

And THAT is why you need 6 weeks (or months?) to recover.

I was tidying up the t-shirt tables at work today when a young mother walked in with a double stroller. In this stroller were two little kids. They were the exact same size.

"Hi there! How old are you guys?"

The cute little boy and his sister both held up three fingers. I smiled at them, and then asked their mother, "Are they twins?"

She sighed heavily.

"No. But they are both 3. They're only 10 months apart."

Ten months. TEN! That means she got pregnant a month after giving birth.

I guess my horror must have shown on my face.

"Yeah." She said in a hopeless voice. "It was not planned."

You guys, what would you do? Besides murder your husband in his sleep, of course.

They didn't even look Irish...


Friday, August 19, 2011

Homeschooled kids are SO WEIRD.

When most people think about homeschooling, they think about this:

(or click here)

Am I right?

(although, with some of the stories I've shared on here, it might not be that far off target...)


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Loose Ends...

Remember how I lost my job, and then I never blogged about it again? Until yesterday, that is. Well, that made me think- there are probably a lot of loose ends lying about.

So I went hunting for frayed strings...

I can hear again! I was using ear-cleaning fluid, and standing on my head, and suddenly there was aloud POP! And everything went back to normal. The moral of this story? Yoga. Yoga is the answer to everything.

We went with Verizon (and completely love it). The people are much nicer, the price is much nicer, and the internet service is much, well, nicer. Less choppy. More reliable. Just...nicer.

Chantel was lying. This will ALWAYS be shady.

Kurt broke his word, and passed his boards. Man, have I got a few posts about that up my sleeve... (oh no, not another cliff-hanging loose-end.)

We got new couches (but kept the foam). Would you like to see pictures?

We never found out whose pee it was. But we also never had another break-in. I call that a draw.

I'm still not pregnant. But you are all still asking. STOP THAT.

This...was a failure.

I forgot I was learning this.

This is still the coolest thing you could do for your holiday shopping.

And finally, that creepy lady is still out there. Every day. For the past 2 years. Talk about a dedicated teacher (snort). Unless what she is teaching is math... $400 = 2 ounces + very bloodshot eyes.

There are probably a few I missed. So if you've been wondering about something that I just left hanging, let me know.

You know, it feels kind of nice to have things all tied up.


Have you ever written about something, and then completely forgotten to follow up?


Monday, August 15, 2011

MY NEW (completely awesome) JOB!!

I got a job!!

So, you remember back when I was laid off right before Christmas? And how they wanted to hire me back? And how they never got the funds, and so I've been not-working, and mostly just sleeping since January??

Yeah. Kurt noticed that too.

"So, you're still spending money. Maybe you should make some."

I politely ignored his little remark, and went back to my leisurely shopping ways.

But then, on one fateful afternoon, I was walking by a Carter's baby clothes store...


No wait, it gets better.



Jump back!

I feel weird saying this, but it's kind of my dream job.

I love the merchandise (and I love my discount.)

I love my customers (who isn't happy about baby clothes??)

And I love my boss/coworkers

(that's probably the most important one. It can make or break a job.)

I even love the cash register! (I was gushing about it for days. No really, it was super exciting. It's a touch-screen, and it's so easy, and in past retail jobs that has been my worst nightmare.)

Every time I work, I come home happy. Actually, I don't even want to come home- it is that much fun.

And that secret stash of baby clothes that I've been collecting for the past few years? Is not so little anymore. In 14 years, I might even have enough to cloth a baby...


Friday, August 12, 2011

The deadline has been set, KURT.

As I left for the airport on Monday, my sweet, little grandma pulled me close, and whispered in my ear:

"Next time you come, you should bring a baby with you."

Then she stared me down. My eyes widened in surprise.

"...Um, someday Grandma. But not yet."

"Well, just don't wait until you are 40. I've been thinking about it, and 40 is just too old for you to start having babies."

Well, I can't argue that one.

"Ok. Before I'm 40. I promise."

So that's it, Kurt. Your deadline is set. 14 years from now, we are having a baby.



Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Obsession? Oh, I'm way past obsession.

I finally gave in, and checked out Pinterest.

And it has fulfilled my every dream.

Well, it has helped me organize my every dream.

It's a start.

All those lists and lists of URL's that I had stored in my gmail Drafts folder? You know, the ones I couldn't really sort because they had no pictures?

They have found new homes. And I can't wait to get started on them.

...That is, if I can ever stop pinning long enough to start.

So if you want to see what I've been doing almost non-stop for the past week, you can check out my boards here:

Follow Me on Pinterest

I'll be there. Day and night. For the rest of my life.


Do you pin?


Saturday, July 9, 2011

The day I wore my Mother's pearls

2 Years ago I was doing this:

And this

And this

And a whole lot of this

With him

Happy Second Anniversary, baby.


Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Eh? Speak up, sonny!

Bad news guys.

I woke up on Monday, and couldn't hear a thing out of my right ear. There was no pain, and there was no blood. There just also wasn't any sound.

So I did what any self respecting 20-something would do.

I asked facebook.

(turns out, it is weird)

And then I googled it.

And then I ran to the store, and picked up some wax-dissolving ear drops.

I wasn't really worried.

But it's been 2 days now, and I still can't hear out of that ear.

So I'm doing the responsible thing...

...and asking you.

(My next step? Twitter. Of course.)

I could go to the doctor, but in my experience, they usually say super frustrating things like "oh, you can't breath because your throat is swollen closed? Gargle salt. And then pay me $80."

And so I'm asking you. Have you ever gone deaf before? And do you have any ideas on how to get my hearing back?

Or should I just brush up on my ASL skills?

PS. For those of you trying not to dry heave, I swear I clean my ears regularly.

-No really, I do!


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Some Grandmas Knit and Bake...

A few months ago, my Grandma came out to live with my Dad.

I think it's been good for her.

She is so hardcore.


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

It's not quite long enough to braid. Yet.

You know how sometimes, after a long winter, you grab that nail polish, look down at your toes and think WHAT THE CRAP KIND OF HAIRS ARE THOSE??

Because no matter how ladylike you are, toe hair happens.

(This is after I shaved. I do have some boundaries.)

Bodies are so weird.


Saturday, May 21, 2011

If I got a perm, could we still be friends?

...Or would you disown me?

Here is a slightly-underwhelming vlog I just made for you guys, wherein I discuss the possibilities of getting my hair permanently altered.

It's just over two minutes, so it can't be that bad. Right?

(you can also watch it here)

Interesting sidenote- I was kind of freaking out about my robe while shooting this. If I look distracted, that's why. I was afraid I would flash you. But not afraid enough to go get dressed.

When Kurt saw what I was wearing he was all, "You had better not have a nip slip!"

A nip slip?? Who talks like that?! My husband, of course.

So what do you think? Should I do it poodle-style (ha, dirty), or go for the authentic, unwashed euro-grease look this summer in Finland?

Or is there a third option out there?

(Also, have you guys ever permed it up? I would love to hear some some 1980's- inspired stories)


Friday, May 20, 2011

Shutterfly and springtime.

---All links have been removed because Shutterfly won't leave me alone! Seriously, I wrote this post in 2011. I am not going to change them whenever you want me to link to something new. This blog post in in the past, people. So if you bloggers out there are thinking of doing a post for them in the future, be warned- apparently there are a LOT of strings attached, even years later...---


I know, summer is almost here. But before it hits, I want to take a minute and think about spring. It's the most exciting season (for me) because if winter lasted another month, I would never make it without turning into a homicidal maniac.

No, really. I get crazy.

And while I dream about summer, the reality is kind of hot and sweaty.

So Springtime. Is awesome.

Now, you might be wondering why I am talking so much about a season that is almost over. Well, I am participating in Shutterfly's Spring Announcements Promo. True to form, I am waiting until the almost-last-day to do it (the deadline is Sunday).

I'm using mine for Baby Shower Invites (if they get here in time). No, not for me. For the shower I am hosting. I'm not pregnant.

And if it's too late this time, keep an eye out. They do this every few months. I participated in their Christmas promo, and got 50 awesome Christmas cards.

Unfortunately, due to an unexpected job loss, I ran out of money, and couldn't send them out.

Lame, huh?

I probably should have told you guys back then, but that's kind of when I went on my also-unexpected blogging hiatus.

But I was really impressed with the quality of those cards. I still pull them out sometimes, and admire the cardstock.

Here, I'll show you what they looked like:

(click to enlarge)

It's referencing this traumatic blog post. And it would have been fantastic.

The moral of the story? Don't get laid off. Also, Blog for Shutterfly. They are awesome.


Thursday, May 19, 2011

I'm so sorry if doing your job is inconvenient to your social life.

Ugh. I have one word to describe my frustration: Comcast.

I know, I know- who doesn't have issues with this internet provider?

But hear me out. It's not because of their sketchy internet (although that was one of the main reasons we cancelled last year).

It's because of their rude customer service agents.

After months of sharing the internet with our extremely friendly neighbors (a fantastic deal, as we split the cost), we have decided to try again. This is partly because when our neighbors go on vacation, and the internet goes out, we have no way of pushing the reset button.

(On a completely unrelated note, my apartment complex frowns on breaking and entering.)

So that was my assignment this week. Find our own internet.

I started with Comcast. I looked up their prices, and then compared them to Verizon.

Hmm. Verizon is looking a bit cheaper.

Still, Comcast is familiar. And I have to start somewhere.

So this morning, I got on my cell phone and gave them a call. The guy who answered the phone set me at ease immediately. He was friendly, and helpful, and on the other side of the country.

Shoot. They routed me to the Utah office, because that's where my cell number is from.

We laughed about the mix up, and then he kindly transferred me to the Pittsburgh office.

Where I was treated like crap.

"Hi! I am looking into getting the internet set up at my home. And I was hoping you could tell me about the prices."

"Um, ok. Are you calling to have the internet installed?"

Those words sound so innocent here, but believe me, they were not. He was talking down at me like I was stupid. It was a total "you're wasting my time" kind of voice.

The rest of the call went pretty much like that. Him sighing loudly, being almost-sarcastic, and generally treating me like I was a waste of oxygen.

WHAT THE HELL, COMCAST? I am the customer. I'm sorry if doing your job is inconvenient to your social life. I get that you are being asked to do such terrible things like sitting on your butt, answering the phone, and typing on a keyboard.

But do you have to take it out on me?

I am so tired of bitchy sales clerks, and customer service people who act like I'm ruining their life by asking them to do their job. You don't feel like opening a dressing room, looking up a price, or answering the phone? TOUGH SHIT.

Maybe it's my fault for not saying something. Maybe I smile too much, or back down too easily. Maybe I have a sign on my back saying "kick this one, she won't hit back."

And maybe I just need to lose my temper, and start talking to them like they talk to me. If it all escalates, and I get a reputation at the local police station, well, what can I say? At least I stood up for myself.

...but I probably won't. Instead, I will grit my teeth, and keep the peace, and then spend the rest of the day running different scenarios through my mind, and muttering under my breath like a crazy person.

So in conclusion, I will be calling Verizon tomorrow. And if they are nice to me, I will sign up in a heartbeat.

So how about you? Do you have any Comcast stories? Or stories about rude sales people in general? Because I would Love to hear them.


Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Sunday, May 8, 2011

It's not that I dont like this holiday.

It's just that I miss my mom.

If you see me, I will be sitting alone. And that's ok.

I don't need to be cheered up, or even comforted. Just left alone to think and remember.

(Unless you knew her too. Then please, stop by and talk a while).

(...just don't ask me to comfort you).

Someday when I have kids, this holiday will probably mean more.

But for now, it is one of the saddest days of the year.

And I guess that's ok, too.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

It smelled like rotten fruit, but tasted like victory.

"I'm going to miss you Helena. Have fun with your family, ok?"

I nodded.

"And while you're gone, I think I'm going to clean out the fridge."


Our fridge hasn't been emptied out in... a while.

About a month ago, I noticed a noxious odor coming from somewhere inside.

I was pretty sure the culprit was hiding in the bottom-left-hand drawer. You know- the one for vegetables?

I hadn't looked in there in a few ...months?

Anyway, I decided to ignore it.

A few weeks later, the smell was overpowering.

It wasn't really a stand off between Kurt and I, so much as one between us, and the fridge.

And we were losing. Badly.

We discussed our options. I could clean it- but I had just cleaned the ENTIRE apartment in a crazy spring-cleaning fever. While it was physically possible, it would be the last thing I cleaned.

Like, ever.

Kurt could do it- but it was Finals week, and he was busy, and really, couldn't we just eat the things in our pantry, and forget about the refrigerator for a while?

Awkwardly, we worked around it, holding our breath whenever we had to go in for milk or butter.

The standoff continued.

When we had friends over, we would mention the smell before they could. It seemed less awkward that way.

I was afraid it would always be like this.

But then, as we were pulling up to the airport, Kurt said those 13 magic words.

"And while you're gone, I think I'm going to clean out the fridge."

I could have kissed him.

So I did.

And even though we were a team, and it was "Us Against The Fridge".....

.....It tasted like victory.


Wednesday, May 4, 2011


After last week's nightmare, I received notes and messages from concerned, hungry readers.

Thank you.

The best thing you can do is educate yourself, and be wary of dark, dry places- like your cupboard or pantry.

And if you see anything suspicious, please contact the proper authorities.

...whoever those might be.

At your request, I am releasing the following. I hope it helps.


Friday, April 29, 2011

Live Blogging from the Airport

I'm sitting here in Vegas, surrounded by Mormons (I assume). Let's just say the people lining up for this flight into Salt Lake are showing a lot less skin than the rest of the airport.

(And their hair is pouffier)

I'll be gone for a week. But don't bother robbing my apartment. The only expensive thing we own is on my finger (um, also, please don't mug me). I'm leaving Kurt at home. With a dog. And a gun. A rabid dog. And a giant gun. Both of which want to kill you.

Especially the gun.

I don't always enjoy flying. Sometimes I even (dare I say it?) hate the whole experience. But right now, sitting in this hairsprayed crowd, I'm actually having fun.

Weird, huh?

But its true. And I think I know why.


1. Free airport internet. Remember a few years ago, when they tried to make you pay to use it? Well, I never gave in, and I think they noticed. FREE INTERNET FOR THE PEOPLE.

2. Friendly TSA agents. But not creepy-friendly. They were much less gropey today than they were at Christmas time. And I didn't have to go through the naked machine. (Ow!Ow!)

3. Hour and a half layovers are kind of perfect. You don't have to stress if your flight gets in a little late, and there's plenty of time to use the restroom, grab a snack, take a walk, and write a blog post. No rushing necessary. I guess I didn't have to rush during Christmas either, but when your layover is 5 hours long, it loses its appeal.

4. Stopping in Vegas ROCKS. Half my flight from Pittsburgh was drunk before they got on the plane, and that flight? Best.Flight.Of.Their.Lives.

5. My destination. I'm going to see my family, yo! It's sister time. Plus, my dad might buy me things. And when i get back to Pittsburgh, Kurt will be so excited to see me, I won't have to clean for a week. OR MAYBE TWO.

And that is why todays trip isn't sucking.

Almost makes you want to hop on a plane, doesn't it?


how about you? What do you love/hate about flying? I would love to hear some stories.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Oh hey, remember when Kurt was KIDNAPPED BY A SERIAL KILLER??

I woke up out in the living room.

It was 3am, and I was looking for Kurt. I was still only half awake, but I got the impression that I had been searching for a while.

Where the heck was he??

By now I was about 3/4 awake, and starting to panic. He wasn't in the bathroom, He wasn't on the balcony, and HOW WAS I SUPPOSED TO SAVE HIM FROM A HUSBAND-KILLING-CEREAL-KILLER???

I can't even keep people from peeing in my trash can!

I rushed around calling "Kurt?? Where are you??" at the top of my lungs.

There was no answer.

I stumbled into the bedroom, and grabbed for my phone. That's when I noticed it- the foot sticking out from under the bed.


No, wait. False alarm. There was a leg attached to it.

I crept around the bed, bracing myself for the giant puddle of blood seeping into the carpet (What? I've seen Law & Order).

But instead I saw this:

It was not cute.


He didn't move.

I kicked him.



I stood there shaking from the aftermath of that adrenaline, still kind of worried that he might be dead.

He had better not be dead.

After a few minutes he started moving and mumbling. Then he climbed back into bed, completely oblivious to my fury.

And I was furious. I'm pretty sure he tried to cuddle me, but I just shoved him away.

Looking back, I feel kinda bad for how angry I was. All he had wanted was to roll off the bed and cuddle his pillow in peace.

But at the time, it was all I could do to not kill him myself.

He has to be doing this on purpose.

Husbands are jerks.


This post was inspired by Mama Kat's weekly writing prompts. I mean, it just happened, but who knows when I would have gotten around to writing it if it hadn't been for prompt #3.

I'm linking it to her Writer's Workshop.


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

My new obsession (and I don't even sing)


If have a minute (or, like, an hour) check out The Voice.

I'm watching it right now, and I am IN LOVE.

I don't even like talent competition shows!

(I swear, they are not paying me to say this)

Man, the people who put this show together knew what they were doing. It's so suspenseful and crazy, and when the artists get to choose between the judges I can't stop jumping up and down!

It's so intense.

So check it out.

And if you're at work, wearing headphones, and being subtle?

Try watching it on igoogle. It's a much smaller screen, and you can make the rest of the page look business-like.

You're Welcome.


Tuesday, April 26, 2011

There are HOW MANY WAYS???

Too bad I didn't see this last week. Kurt would have had a VERY manly birthday.

50 Ways to Use Feminine Hygiene Products in a Manly Manner

So now I'm curious; what's the manliest way you've ever used a tampon?

(I know, you probably get asked that all the time.)


Sunday, April 24, 2011

This does NOT count as an emergency.

I looked up from my book, and stared towards the bedroom.


The voice was so faint, I could barely hear it.

I dropped my book and ran.

"Kurt?! Are you ok? Are you having a heart attack??"

He looked up at me with sad eyes.

"I need water."


"I texted you like ten minutes ago!"

"My phone isn't next to- WHAT DID YOU DO???"

His text books were COVERED in candy wrappers.

"Um, I didn't mean to. It just sort of happened."


"Yeah. And it made me thirsty."

I stared at him in silence.


If today wasn't his birthday, he would be in so much trouble right now. He's had that basket for, what? 3 hours now?

That has to be a record.

Happy Easter you guys.


Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Anybody Can Be Cool-- But Awesome Takes Practice

I was clicking through Amazon, looking for things to add to my birthday wishlist. I followed a trail of suggestions and listmania items and came across THIS:

Anybody Can Be Cool-- But Awesome Takes Practice (Devotionals for Teens)


The hair. The outfits. The "teenagers" who look like they are pushing 30. Admit it- this would make the perfect gift.

I didn't think life could get any better. And then I read the reviews.

(click to enlarge)

If someone gave this to me, I think I would die happy.


Tuesday, March 1, 2011


After reading yesterday's post, You might be wondering...

What does Shawnda look like?

Oh heck yes.

"Why does she have rainbow colored hair?"

Um, I don't know. I haven't met many meth-addicted-tranny-hookers. I usually stick to the regular kind.

Hey! Hands off you guys- S/He's mine.


Monday, February 28, 2011

Confessions of a burnt-out blogger.

I didn't mean to stop blogging.

I just got busy. And then I got lazy. And then I got forgetful. And then I got guilty.

(Got guilty? Oh yes. You read that right.)

I don't handle stress very well. When something overwhelms me, I like to ignore it, and hope it goes away. Which almost never works.

And when I feel guilty, I do the very same thing. Only with more passion.

During Christmastime I started feeling burnt out. Blogging everyday for the past over-a-year was awesome, but suddenly I needed a break. It was only supposed to be for a few days. But then it kind of got out of control.

For a while in January I made goals to blog, and made excuses for not blogging, and then stressed out when I realized just how long it had been, and didn't I realize how much I was letting people down??

The pressure built and built (you know, in my head. people weren't making me feel bad in real life or anything), and I started avoiding even looking at the computer. Just being in the same room was uncomfortable. I could feel the monitor staring at me, judging me for choosing a science fiction book over this sexy keyboard.

And so I started reading in bed, far away from the internet.

I've read a lot of books since Christmastime.

It's funny, I know it doesn't bother most of you. I just haven't been showing up in your feeds, or at the top of your blog rolls. You may wonder and worry a little, but you aren't angry or asking for an apology.

Blog posts that start with "I'm SO sorry I haven't posted in FOREVER" kind of irritate me when I read them. I think "Sheesh, stop apologizing. I get it, you have a life outside of this computer screen."

So here I am, being a hypocrite.

I just feel like I owe you guys some kind of explanation, since I went from posting every single day to posting, you know, never.

Which was pretty lame, you know?

And since you asked, here are my answers:

I haven't died, and I haven't abandoned you forever (I hope). I haven't gone into the witness protection program, or been arrested for indecent exposure (or anything else). I have been in a car accident, but it wasn't a big one.

I'm not leaving my husband for a tranny hooker named Shawnda (You guys are so weird).

And finally, I am not still in mourning from the Superbowl. Although I can see why you all thought that.

(Can I tell you the truth? I'm not even really a Steeler's fan. I just kind of pretend so I'll fit in better. Don't tell Pittsburgh.)

I'm just here, being lazy, and feeling guilty.

What haven't you been doing?


Saturday, February 5, 2011

Oh, come on. I'm not THAT difficult to live with.

"Hey dude, I wrote a blog post! Do you want to come read it??"

He looked up from mopping the kitchen floor.

"Um, yes. But can I finish this first?"


He hesitated.

"Are you mad?"

I raised my eyebrows in surprise.

"It's fine."

"No, really- are you mad? Do I need to come read it now?"

"Um, no. It's ok. Finish first. I don't care."

He peered at me intently.

"I can't tell if you're angry right now."

"I'm not!"

"Because if you are, I can just come over."

"There's no rush. And I mean that in the least passive-aggressive way possible."

He gave me a uncertain look, and went back to mopping.

I swear I don't beat him.


Friday, February 4, 2011

How's your love tank NOW??

"Hey Kurt, how full would you say your love tank is?"

"Maybe... an 8."

I thought for a minute.

"But...remember how I made the bed this morning?"

"Um, yes."

"And I did the dishes. Without being asked."

"Uh huh."

"And then I made dinner. I don't usually make dinner."

"That's true."

"And while I didn't clean anything, I also didn't make a bigger mess. I avoided doing anything productive, just so I wouldn't have to clean up. I mean- so I wouldn't be messy. I did that for you."


"So, how's your love tank now?"

".....You know it doesn't work that way."

"AND I bought you ice cream. "

I stared at him expectantly.

He sighed.

"Ok, fine. It's an...8.5."

I smiled smugly.

"I know."


Thursday, February 3, 2011

5 Easy Tips for Vlogging with Style.

If you are like me, vlogging both intrigues and terrifies you. You want to try it...But you don't want to look (or sound) stupid.

It's scary.

A while ago, I sucked it up, and made my first vlog. I was inspired by my friend Mary from The Mama Mary Show.

It was kind of a disaster.

.....But it was also really fun.

This is Mary:

I emailed Mary a while ago, and practically begged her to write, or film, a guest post for me. She said yes.

Without further ado, here are Mary's 5 Easy Vlogging Tips (to help you vlog with style).


Top Five Vlogging Tips

I met my girl Helena a few months ago via the SITS Girls website and it was love at first stick figure. When she asked me last month to do a guest post on vlogging tips, I was like "hellz yeah" and threw up a peace sign. It's taken me a while to getter done, but it's finally here (see below).

As I was recording it, I realized that I'm really not an expert in this field, but I like to pretend I am, so I had a lot of fun.

I also realized that I don’t even know how to pronounce Helena's name. Is it a soft 2nd “e” like Marlena from Day of our Lives or a hard "e" as in Marlena Deitrich? At the end of the vlog I tried to say “thanks Helena for having me on your site,” but instead it came out, “thanks (weird pause) thanks for having me.”

A little bit about me, besides that I am now a self-proclaimed vlogging expert. I began vlogging in 2009, soon after I started to blog. I figured that since I had named my site “The Mama Mary Show” I should better start providing show-like material. Plus I am much more comfortable talking then I am writing. Soon a weekly series called “Monday Momsense” was born, in which I discuss a topic du jour ranging from tips on how flat chested women can get cleavage to what to do with leftover vodka (I’m not sure why anyone would have leftover vodka, but just in case, I have a use for it, aside from adding it to tomato juice). The Monday Momsense vlogs are rarely posted on Mondays, but they are always filled with the sense of a mom, which is none.

(you can also watch it on Youtube)

Below are some of my favorite vloggers who work the camera from a different angle than I do.

Karen Alloy
Lizzie B TV
Jessica Bern
The Ohana Mama
Hoo Dee Hoo
Mama Kat

Now go get your vlog on!


For more of Mary's vlogging tips, be sure to check her out at Bloggy Boot Camp SD, where she will be speaking on this very subject.

(Also, here is a quick pronunciation guide, for those of you who are identifying with her awkward pause. You can say my name however you want, but the way I say it is Hell-ay-nuh. There's this whole accent-over-the-second-'e'-thing, which doesn't always make it onto the screen. Here, I'll put it in: Heléna. That's my real name.)

Now grab your camera, and give it a try!


Monday, January 31, 2011

In case you were wondering...

I hate the crunchy sound your cheek makes when you are chewing gum, and you miss.

It's happened three times today.


I need a bandaid, for the inside of my mouth.

Have those been invented yet...?

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Saving Money Is Sexy. Just Ask Kurt.

Hi guys. Remember how last week I said to ignore any and all emails that contain links asking for your credit cards?

That's still a good idea.

But remember my ending line, where I said "...Unless it's a LivingSocial Deal. Those things rock my world." ??

Well, today's LivingSocial deal rocked my world so much, I would have bought it 50 times if they hadn't set a 1-per-person limit. Maybe you've heard of it already?

For $10 you can get a $20 Amazon Gift Certificate.



In case you are wondering what LivingSocial is, it's a lot like Groupon. They have a new deal every day, and it expires in a day. So that Amazon card? You only have until tomorrow morning to purchase that.

But you don't have to use it in the next day.

I usually purchase the half-off local restaurant deals. For $15, I regularly get $30 to spend at all sorts of cool restaurants. We've tried an Ethiopian restaurant, an Italian restaurant, an Indian Food restaurant, etc.

You usually have 6 months to use your deal. Sometimes there are other limits, but that's pretty standard, at least for the restaurant deals.

It makes date night pretty darn affordable. Which, when you're married, becomes the biggest turn-on.

(At least for Kurt.)

This Amazon giftcard, though? Does not expire. I looked- it's in the fine print. Who knew fine print could be so exciting?

So you could save this for Christmas time- 5 years from now. Or use it to buy a few trashy romance novels. Or a textbook.

Or heck, put it towards a Kindle.

Or just sit there, wondering if this is spam. After all, there was that whole free-movie-ticket-incident...

(come on guys. You know this is me.)

So why am I telling you about this? I have to be getting something out of it.

Well, I love you all. And I know how to share. And I am not being asked to write this post, or sponsored in any way.

Except...well, if three of you do buy this gift, and you use this link? I get mine free.

It's only $10. So if you don't, I won't be all that disappointed.

(But if you do I'll love you forever.)

And once you buy your deal? They'll give you a link. And if three of your friends click through that on facebook or twitter or anywhere you put it, and they buy it too? You will get your deal for free.

It's like the coolest pyramid scheme ever.

But if you aren't into sharing, you can also just enjoy the fantastic deal without sharing it. No one will know. Except God.

Also, my blogging has been kind of...slow lately.


And this is kind of like a kick in the butt. Maybe tomorrow I'll even draw a picture.

So there you go. Full disclosure.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go check out Amazon. I have some money to spend.


Wednesday, January 12, 2011

If you loved me, you'd send me spam.

So, yesterday's post made some of you feel left out. For the record, if I could, I would send all of you creepy free movie ticket emails. I really mean that.

Now, if it was real movie tickets, I would just keep them for myself.

...Too much honesty?

For more spam, please be sure and enable your email in your blogger account.

That's how I reply to comments, so you will also get emails from me saying things like "No, you are the most awesome person on the planet!" and "Yes, I should have my own TV show" (depending on your comment).

No really, you should do this. It makes blogging so much more fun. You will suddenly get tons of bloggers replying to your comment, and less people will hate you for showing up as a ""

As for the random, questionable email that went out yesterday, I can't promise a lot of those. Heck, I'll even try to limit them in the future. But just know that every one is sent with love. And a whole lot of malware (I assume).

And if you ever click through a link, and it asks for your credit card number? Run away. Like, book it into the other room, and hide under a table. And take your credit card with you.

...Unless it's a LivingSocial Deal. Those things rock my world.


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

I didn't send you a movie ticket

So, I think I need to change my password. It looks like something hacked my Gmail address book, and sent out a thing for free movie tickets. I have no idea if it's legit, but I'm thinking not.

Sorry guys.

I tried to send out emails to everyone, but there are 924 people in my contacts, and I reached my sending limit pretty fast.

Hopefully people see either this, or my facebook update...


I don't know why he gets nervous. He passes most of my tests.

"Hey Kurt, how much do you love me?"

He stared at me.

"Why yes, this is a test," I assured him.

He thought about it for a minute before answering.

"I love you enough to have married you even though you are the messiest roommate I have ever had. In other words, "Sooo much." With three 'o's."

"...I'll take it."


Saturday, January 8, 2011

I'm not scared of silence. I just avoid it whenever possible.

I live my life with a soundtrack. In the car, in my home, at work (you know, back when I had work). I am a music junky.

If you looked at my iPod, you'd find a semi-eclectic mix of Hip Hop, Country, Classic Rock, Show tunes, and a whole lot from the late 90's, and early 2000's (What? I was in highschool. That music defined my generation). In fact, my iPod probably looks a lot like yours.

The only thing I steer clear from is Classical music.

Ugh. I hate Classical music.

Growing up, we didn't listen to the radio. My parents surrounded us with The Beach Boys, Chicago, Neil Diamond, and a whole lot of Classical orchestra music.

I can handle the first three, but I think I overdosed on the Classical stuff. It just makes me angry.

Whenever I blog, I do it with background music. And I think you can tell when you read it. For example, when I wrote this fairytale post, I was listening to Pandora's Classical Christmas station. And it is a lot more refined than my usual writing.

And when I wrote this graphically violent one? A combination of Alanis Morissette, Pink, and Avril Lavigne. Of course.

Today, I hopped on iTunes and decided to download my favorite hits of 2010.

And then I thought, "Why not them with you guys?"

You're welcome.

My favorite hits of 2010:

American Honey, by Lady Antebellum

Hey Soul Sister by Train

(I have a pandora station based on Train. I love them that much.)

Just The Way You Are, by Bruno Mars

Secrets, by OneRepublic

Love The Way You Lie, by Eminem

(I have a weakness for Eminem.)

Rhythm Of Love, by Plain White T's

Empire State Of Mind, the Glee version

(Other songs that I love more when Glee sings them: Don't Stop Believin', Bust Your Windows, and Last Name)

Shy Ronnie, Featuring Shy Ronnie and Rhianna

(technically, this aired in December of '09. But I didn't see it until a month later, so I'm counting it.)

Honorable mentions: Stuck Like Glue by Sugarland, Love Like Woe by The Ready Set, Fireflies by Owl City, Watcha Say by Jason Derulo, Billionaire by Travie McCoy,

What kind of music do you listen to?


Friday, January 7, 2011

Awkward? Oh no, we are WAY past awkward.

I wanted to go to a sex shop.

(For my international readers, a sex shop is a place where you buy lingerie/adult novelty items, not a place where you buy sex. Just thought I should clarify.)

I guess I come across as pretty unfazeable in real life. When someone opens a white elephant gift and finds sparkling cider, condoms, handcuffs, and a pregnancy test, I always get blamed.

(Ok, fine. It was me.)

But when it comes to the adult novelty items in the back of the store, I get all flustered and awkward. I can't stop blushing, and eye contact is out of the question.

Still, I was curious.

I told Kurt that I wanted to go to an adult store a while ago, and he was game. But every time we tried, I'd chicken out last minute. They all looked too sleazy and dirty.

...And most of the ones in Pennsylvania weren't really sex stores- they were adult book and movie stores, with creepy old men as their main clientele.

No thank you.

I decided to try the Blue Boutique.

The Blue Boutique is a shop in Salt Lake City. It's a well lit, classier option. I get their emails, and even though I've never been there, I knew it would be a better choice.

We planned it out, and picked the day. My Dad was taking us all to The Roof for dinner on Monday, which is right in the center of Salt Lake. Perfect.

We would drive separately, and make The Stop on our way home.

What could possibly go wrong?


The day wasn't going as smoothly as my dad had hoped. My little brother hadn't gotten the message, and was still sleeping ten minutes before we were supposed to leave. My dad was really frustrated, and stormed around the house.

He just wanted it to be special.

After some pretty stressful minutes, they all piled into the car and left. But then a few seconds later they peeled back into the driveway.

"Helena! Why aren't you guys driving with us??"

I looked up from my makeup in surprise.

"Well, we aren't ready yet. We will just follow you guys in a few minutes."

"No, just come with us now. I want this to be special."

I could tell he was really frustrated.

I thought fast. "We have a few stops to make. It's ok, dad, don't worry."

He was getting more and more agitated.

"Are you mad at me? What's going on?"

"No, we just want to drive by ourselves."

He paced into the other room, muttering to himself. Then he turned to Kurt and said, "You guys are going over to Amber and Dave's house afterward to play games. It doesn't make sense. You should just drive with us."

He marched back over and demanded "You guys need to just get in the car."

I was flustered. "Dad! We have errands to run!"

He was nearing the end of his rope. "Helena, I want this to be nice, and you're just making it harder than it has to be! I don't understand, just get in the car and we will drive together-"

"Dad! We are going to a sex shop! And I don't want you to come with us!"

The words just hung there, begging me to snatch them back.

We stared at each other, horrified. The silence grew more and more awkward, and finally he turned and walked out the door.

Mortified, I turned to Kurt, who was just standing there in shock. "I didn't know what to do!" I pleaded. "He wouldn't take no for an answer!"

Romy, the cleaning lady, was dying of laughter in the background.

She finally gasped out a full sentence. "I can't-gasp-believe-gasp-you said that to your father!"

She was doubled over with laughter.

Kurt started chuckling too.

"It just came out you guys!"

They were laughing too hard to respond.

...My poor Dad. He just can't seem to catch a break.


When we went over to Amber's house later that night, I shared that story with my sisters.

They were more horrified than amused, and Chantel piped up with a story of her own.

"For our one year anniversary, Michael and I decided to check out a sex store. We were in Saint George, and we looked in the phone book. There were a few phone numbers, but no addresses."

"Did you call?" we asked curiously.

"Yeah. The number belonged to a lady who sells sex toys out of the back of her car."


"We met her in a parking lot."

"'re kidding."

"No, she was really nice."

I just...I didn't know what to say to that.

So there you go. If you're in Salt Lake, check out the Blue Boutique. And if you're in Saint George, check out the shady people who sell sex toys out of the back of their cars.


Kurt's response when I told him this story: "And that, my friends, is how you catch Chlamydia."


Note from Chantel:

"It was a lady who does sex toy parties! Like Tupperware parties! It wasn't weird!"

Sure, Chantel. Sure.


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