Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Forget Chucky, Have You Ever Owned a Demonized Elmo Doll with Batteries?

When I think about it, it's no wonder kids are freaked out by toys. I mean, when I was a wee little lass, the most the toys would do to you was stare at you with a maniacal frozen stare, causing you to imagine they wanted to chew your feet off at the ankles while you stood paralyzed in fear, until you fell down because you no longer had feet, just stumps pulsating buckets of blood onto the walls of your room. It was basically a battle between you and your imagination, see?

Well wait, there was Kissing Barbie; she had a puckered face and a button on her back, which when you pressed it made her head move as if she were trying to lay a peck on Ken. Her head was hard. Rock hard. You couldn't push her nose in and cause her to look like she OD'd on Alum, like the other dolls. I had to know what was making her head so hard. 7-year-olds are curious that way...

So, my friend and I decided to do some surgery, and well, we peeled her face right off. Encased in her rubber face was a plastic skull, which I am sure James Cameron based the Terminator's skull off of. I immediately took the face and skull and chucked them into my neighbor's yard, hoping they would mow over it before it rolled its way back into my house to attack me in my sleep.

And then there was that Winking Western Barbie. Cripes. She was like the Crypt Keeper with a makeover. And a cowboy hat. She had that one huge eye with plastic eyelashes? Again, push her back and she would wink at you as if to say, "Don'tcha worry hon, I won't KILL you!" *wink wink*. ACK!

So I had to rip her eyelashes off. And then I threw her away.

But these days, toys have batteries. And make noises. And move. And I swear they have some sort of evil soul, as they refuse to die when the batteries are obviously ready to move on.

I mean, have you ever walked past a baby doll or some battery-operated creature in the store and have it cry, yell, or bust out in song at you? I went all ninja one time on a babydoll in Kroger. Had my husband not been there to distract me with his outburst of laughter I might have been arrested. Seriously. These toys should be outlawed.

So, take the Tickle Me Elmo doll for example. That piece fluffy fabric had a seizure every time you touched it, and it begged for you to "tickle Elmo again!" immediately after the minute-long, agonizing seizure. So like an idiot you did, over and over, and then you would put him on the linoleum, and watch him gyrate around. Then you would put him next to your sleeping Chihuahua, and let him scare the crazap out of your dog, and then you would put him under the couch pillow so grandma could get a good buzz and laugh. After all that fun you would give it to your kid, and the batteries were obviously getting low, because then Elmo was like, "tiiiiiiiickle Elllllmo ahhhhh...." so you think, good! I was getting bored with this thing anyway! Then Elmo gets lost in the toys on your kid's floor.

Until 2 am...

I would always go into check on my kids late at night, because we all know how stressful it can be, trying to fall asleep with toys threatening to take you down at the first sound of a snore. And even though I would always assure them that nothing was gonna happen, I would so want to say, "yeah, when I was your age I thought my Bert puppet was going to grow legs, run over to my bed and kill me!!!" But that would not help.

So once I made sure the kids were asleep, I started my way out the room only to step on something soft and hear the darkest, deepest, guttural, growling demon spawn groan I had ever heard,

"tiiiiiiiiiiiiiicklllllllllle Ellllllllllllmo aaaaaaaaaagaaaaaaaaaaaaainnnnnnn..."
This thing was royally ticked off, nearing zombie state, and threatening me for being an easily amused, ignorant human being.

Every hair stood up on my body, (and in those days of extreme child rearing there were a lot) and I stood frozen, pretty sure I was about to fall over due to freshly chewed bloody stumps. Garnering all the bravery I could, I rummaged for the crazed monster and took it out of their room. I wasn't taking any chances.

But then I regained my age and, instead of removing the batteries, I tortured my husband with the thing for about 20 minutes. Then the next morning I called my dad and had Elmo answer his "hello". Dad wasn't phased, but instead super proud of himself because he was the one who bought the possessed machine...

I buried Elmo in an undisclosed location and we left the state.

PS It was my daughter's bday today. Guess what she got? A cute little dinosaur called, Screature, who screams, growls and tries to bite your fingers off if you pet him the wrong way. I am NOT joking! Oh, and it shoots water at you, like from 5 feet away. Awesome. I'll get the shovel...

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

If You Pee in the Woods but it Misses the Ground, Where Does It Go?

Can you pee in the woods? I mean, if you're a girl, can you maneuver yourself into an effective position for a quick tinkle in the thickets when you're on the road and far away, from smarmy gas stations, and towns with only one bullet-ridden stop sign, without having any problems whatsoever? How about your two-year-old daughter who was just potty trained? Yeah, I am about to flash back. Hope I don't pass out in the process...

See normally, I pack no less than 825 bags of stuff when going on a road trip that is longer than an hour. I mean, there are tons of things I cannot live without in an hour's span, and that doesn't change just because I am strapped into a hunk of metal and plastic going 80mph down a highway. Add in a hubby and two kids and well, it's a wonder we ever leave the house. Can we all say trailer hitch?

The list I wrote for a baby's diaper bag is nearly exhaustive (typing hurts) but once they hit a certain age, and there is more than one, and the trips are longer, the list gets well, more exhaustive. Here is what you should always have with you on a family "cross-country" road trip:

Water, like a few gallons or ten
A few pounds of snacks
Frozen ice packs
Paper towels
Toilet paper
Toys of every sort, size, color and shape
Music, books, musical books
DVD player
Pen and paper
Plastic Ziplock bags
Garbage bags
Decked out First Aid kit
Blankets and pillows
Bug spray
Spare tire
Air compressor
Utility knife
Waterproof matches or flint
Gallon of hand sanitizer
Necessary feminine hygiene products
Duct tape
Cell phone
Cell phone charger
AAA card
Your kids
4 full changes of clothes for each person, considering any and all weather patterns.
3 pairs of shoes, possibly snow shoes, roller-blades and stilts.

It's also a great idea to get in several epis of Survivorman, Man vs. Wild, Jeff Corwin and Macgyver...

if you watched enough Macgyver you probably packed a Bon Jovi CD, rubber band, a piece of chalk and a cocky attitude as well. Good for you.

But ya know sometimes you just get lazy.

One time while we were on a 4-hour drive to visit the Sea Life Center in small fishing town in Alaska, Audrey, who was two, decided she needed to pee. Now, normally my kids have the bladders of, well, something that can hold its pee for seemingly days on end. Like, a backwards camel or something. No, that's a weird visual. Moving on...

But she really needed to pee, and this was rather important because she was newly potty trained, and therefore not in any sort of absorbent diaper/pull up-type thing. And the genius that I am, I did not pack any extra clothes. Call me stupid if you must, but, I am sticking with lazy.

So we were like, an hour from any creepy gas station or a semblance of a town, and by town I mean a bar, fishing tackle shop and a creepy gas station. This is when we decided to pull over and have her pee in the woods.

Now, for a poor little child who had just run the rigors of potty training, who heard things like, "nooooooooo!" as she peed on the floor, this event was traumatizing at best. In her head I am sure she was all, "wait, I JUST started peeing in that big white bowl, just like Elmo does and now she wants me to pee on the ground? Again?"

Maybe I was distracted by the cars whizzing by in the distance, or the mosquitoes lining up to devour her backside, or her constant screaming, "no pee outside!" or the very real threat of bears, but once she let it go, none of it hit the ground. It all hit my thigh. No wait. Some of it got ALL OVER her too. Yeah, that's right...

So there I stood, holding a screaming child, both of us drenched with urine. I walked back to the car and hubby asked, "what happened?"

"I can't pee outside and I can't even teach my child to pee outside!" I sobbed, "the one time I myself tried to pee outside I was 6 and I got it all over my pants and when I came inside my mom asked me what happened and I lied and said the swings were wet and she didn't believe me so I went for the 'I laughed so hard I peed my pants' bit to which she told me I had lied to her and that it was a bad thing to do. Lie that is!"

"Did you pack extra clothes?" He asked.

So with that I sat in my pee-drenched jeans and Audrey sat in her pee-drenched jeans and she cried and I gnashed my teeth until we reached our destination an hour away.

One would think that hour-old pee stench is too much to take, but we were in a fishing town, so, the smell was masked quite nicely.

Do you know there are no real stores in fishing towns?

Yeah, no Wal-Mart, Target, JC Penney, Sears, Kohls, 7/11, nothing. There are tourist shops. And fishing tackle shops. And beer. Maybe a fish and chips joint...

We pulled up next to a shop that seemed to have at least fleece pull overs with Alaska all over them, so I set out to get clothes for myself and my poor little girl.

Guess what I found.

After scouring the whole store, the one store with any clothes at all, I bought a pair of boys swim trunks for 20 bucks for Audrey, and the only pair of pants, which were pastel, nearly transparent, pink capris, a size too small, for the bargain price of 45 bucks. For me.


Thank goodness I had on white underwear.

So, I came out of the store wearing capris that distinctly showed my underwear line, and could rip at any moment, holding my daughter who needed a belt for her new swim trunks which were hiked up to her neck. My husband was thoroughly impressed with my choices and the price I paid, and I was completely ecstatic to walk around the sea life center wearing pants that showed every bulge and the fact that I hadn't shaved my legs that day.

Seriously I wanted to cry and drive straight home but, we had pelicans and otters and sea lions to see and star fish to pet. You know how kids under the age of 4 remember these things!

It was just so tragic because 3 pairs of pants were thrown away that day (there ain't no gettin' pee smell out of jeans that have steeped for 7 hours in urine, and, those capris, while they saved the day, really did no one any favors) and no matter how hard I tried to avoid it, people had to walk behind me, and I am sure my awesome super-tight transparent pink capris distracted them from looking at salmon spawning and the giant octopus, which really was the main attraction. There are no pictures of this fashion disaster. Even if there were, I would have rigged an abandoned microwave to decimate the pictures in while singing, Blaze of Glory.

Learn from this experience my friends. Pack your bags, and oh, get one of these like wendiwinn has, or at least get a friend who will send you one.

Happy to be back.

Monday, March 1, 2010

I am Experiencing a Hiatus, and No, I Don't Need any Ointment, Thank You...

Mentally gone? Hahahahaha that happened a long time ago! But seriously...

Some of my homies may have noticed I have been MIA in the comments...things have been changing around here...

So I am taking a hiatus. Yes. I am. Don't cry too much. It's not forever, but, it will probably be for a while.

If you're shocked and red in the face and screaming at me through your monitor, totally not liking this decision well, I have two things to say. 1. WOW! You really like me! You're weird (heh heh)! and 2. I am taking this time to work on my outside-of-the-home profession. No, not bull-riding, ASL interpreting.

My archives could use a good dusting off (hint hint). So, if any of you all leave me new comments I will be certain to write you back...but, in case you want some direction, here are some fan faves as well as my own...

Mountain Climbing
I Love my Boy
I Love my Girl
Broken Computer Cords
Scary Petting Zoos
Potty Training
Junior Section
It's Not Cancer!

Here's a fun video to watch if you know nothing about interpreting, or Sign Language, or Vanilla Ice, because he fell off the face of the planet. Check out Keith Wann. I had the pleasure of working with him back in the day, before he was famous. Here's a taste of his comedy skits he takes all over the nation. I love the funny in all expressions!!

How long will I be gone? Not sure. Hopefully not too long. I hope you all will stick around until then, and that the party is still going strong when I get back!

Until then,

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