Boondock Ramblings

Welcome to my random thoughts. Which are often weird and, well, random.

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My daughter and I watched the Spirit movie, which is about a wild horse. Some of her comments during it included: “First, that’s not how gravity works,” when the horse jumped a gap the equivalency of the Grand Canyon.

Then, when a horse who had been badly injured earlier in the movie shows up alive: “Oh, so she’s still alive. Great. So, it’s going to be one of those movies, I guess.”

She definitely gets this from me because I’m always questioning the realism of movies and books, even if I enjoy the movie or book

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Our pets have some interesting quirks. I think I’ve mentioned before that our older cat, Pixel, likes to have the water turned on for her in the bathroom sink. She started doing this at our old house and when we moved here, one of the first things I did is turn the water in the bathroom sink on for her to make her feel more at home. Every night when I go to bed she jumps up on the sink and waits for me to turn it on. However, it has to be turned on at just the right force, which is hardly any at all, or she will sit back and give me that “narrowed-eyed bored” look that cats give off when they are annoyed, tired, bored, angry and happy. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve stood there tapping the faucet handle to get just the right amount of water velocity to please this cat.

We’ve only been in this house a year (a year this next week, actually), but already our dog has seasonal traditions, including chasing the bunnies in our backyard during the spring when we let her out on her lead. I don’t even know how she knows they are out there but she will start pacing and whining in the living room and by the time I get her to the back door she’s all tensed up like a racehorse before they’re let out of the shoot. She sticks her nose against the bottom of the door while I hook up her lead and zooms out across the yard as soon as I let her go to catch the offending creatures bouncing in the yard. Sadly, her lead only goes so far, so she never catches them. I let her off one time to give her a chance but she disappeared somewhere over the wood-covered hill behind our house and it took us 10 minutes to get her to come back. That’s not so bad if it’s during the day, but less fun when it is pitch black out and she’s pitch black as well. I’m never sure what else she will encounter out there in the woods (we haven’t seen the area bear yet this year, but I’m sure she’ll be back sooner rather than later.)



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You know what bothers me about headlines that say a political official “went off script”? That they’re admitting to you that there is a “script” and you are part of their “story.”

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My family uses a lot of mustard. When I buy mustard, I buy four or five a time and keep them in the pantry because I know some crisis shall befall my children if they reach into the fridge to make their bologna sandwiches and there is no mustard to put on it. I still don’t understand how they eat bologna or mustard. I’ve never been a fan of either.



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My husband and I are still trying to figure out what town council decided it would be wise to hire a group of dogs and a pre-pubescent boy to run the emergency department for their town. No, this isn’t something ripped from the headlines. Our daughter is back on a Paw Patrol kick. We also can’t figure out why they only have about six people in town yet need all that gear and technology. It has to be costing them a fortune. Not to mention those six people account for almost all the emergencies in town. Maybe it would just be wiser to lock those people up in a room to keep themselves from getting stranded in the ocean, falling into wells, or setting buildings on fire.

I had similar issues back in the day about Max and Ruby. My son loved that show but I could never figure out where Max and Ruby’s parents were and why these children, clearly under the age of 10, were living alone in a house while their grandmother occasionally checked in on them. Once upon a time I wrote an entire blog post about how frustrated the plot line of that cartoon (and book series) made me, but thankfully that blog is long gone and you won’t be subjected to that clear cry for help from a stay-at-home mom who desperately needed (needs) a life.

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My son wanted a medieval helmet so we let him get one. I don’t know why, but wearing it downtown to pick up a pizza with his friend made him very happy, so there we go.

My family has been trying to help me make my current work in progress more exciting.

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Stressed this week? Push play on this and take a deep breath.

Those are my random thoughts for the week. How about yours? Let me know in the comments.

Randomly Thinking: Medieval helmets, cats, new beds

One day this week, one of Little Miss’s friends called early in the morning to play an online game with her. Little Miss was still asleep but when she woke up, very bleary-eyed I might add, I let her know the friend had called.  

“Oh! I need to call her!”

 I said, “Why don’t you wake up some first?”

My child bounced her head off her pillow, face first, like she was headbanging, three times, lifted her head, blew her hair out of her face, and said, “Okay. I’m ready.”

I wish I had known that was going to happen because I would have recorded it. It was the funniest thing I’ve seen in a long time.

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Little Miss likes to sit on one of my husband’s shoulders, cross her legs, fold her hands together in a prayer pose and declare: “I’m your shoulder angel.”

If you have no idea what that means, I invite you to watch these two YouTube skits.

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We bought The Boy a new mattress last week. In related news, he joked with me last week that it’s my job to get him up in the morning because I’m the parent. I told him he’s going to be in high school next year so he needs to take responsibility and start waking up on his own. However, I decided to test his theory this week by barging into his room at 9:30 and telling him to get up.

“I don’t wanna..” he whined.

I reminded him of his challenge, and he said, “You bought me this mattress for a reason. I intend to use it to its fullest.”

He did wake up, but it took me another hour or so to actually convince him to leave the bed. 

For those who might be new here, we homeschool, which is why he is still home at 9:30 a.m. He often wakes up, rolls over, and starts his work without even leaving his bed. 

I wish I had a bladder the size of his because the first thing I have to do every morning is go to the bathroom. 

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Welcome to the unsolicitated advice portion of my post. I don’t care if you vaccinate or don’t vaccinate, but neither of those decisions makes you better than anyone else. Bragging about it, either way, is juvenile. Period. No, I have not seen anyone I know personally or in my blog world do this in either direction so I’m not “preaching” to anyone I know in real life or in the blog world. It’s based on comments I’ve seen on news stories or social media posts (though I’m only on Instagram and MeWe now so those comments are luckily rare). We all need to be more mature about things and respect people in their decisions. 

We all have our reasons for choosing how we take care of ourselves medically and I urge people not to assume someone is an “anti-vaxxer” if they decline a vaccine or that someone is a “pro-vaccine freak” if they get it. I’ve been guilty of these types of judgments in the past and even recently but I’m working on changing myself. I have a long way to go. Pray for me and I’ll pray for you about our tendency to judge others about a variety of issues. If you don’t judge, then simply pray for me! *wink*

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My son has been asking for a knight helmet for a while now. He placed one in the Amazon cart, but I noticed it didn’t have very good reviews, so I suggested he look for one with better reviews. I found one for him and the first review out of 900 was Deus Vult written over and over, so he knew it was the helmet for him. My son has been crying Deus Vult for a while now since his interest in medieval armor started to develop a year or so ago. If you don’t know what it means, it is Latin for God Wills It and it was chanted during the Crusades. 

Many of the reviews were quite creative, including a few that eluded to Monty Python, The Search for the Holy Grail, such as this one: 

“This magnificent helm saved my life.

 Alas, I was a wandering knight cast out by my cruel lord. I embarked on a quest for a spiritual goblet but disaster soon struck. My helm was stolen in the night as I stayed at a local inn. Soon after my squire forsook me and took the coconuts with him. “How now shall I traverse?” I thought. It’s not like coconuts grow on trees. I had already had the good fortune of having a pair of swallows drop one next to me. I’m not sure how it arrived but I’m guessing that they had a strand of tree bark that they fashioned into a….. never mind. I digress. The important thing is that I beckoned to the mighty Amazon and forthwith a new helm came and I defeated the French. I made THEIR fathers smell of elderberries!”

Then there was this one: Perfect for reconquering the middle east and reinstating the kingdom of Jerusalem.

Or this one: Seriously best thing I’ve ever bought. I now see the fear in heretics eyes as I retake the holy land. Deus Vult brothers and sisters of the crusade.

Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would be searching Amazon for medieval helmets with my 14-year-old son, but there I sat reading the most bizarre reviews, at least by my standards, and trying to pick out a helmet he would like. Not a football helmet, but a medieval knight helmet. Yes, he’s definitely our child.

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When you have cats, you don’t even ask they there is a small red potato in the middle of your living room floor. You also don’t ask why there are socks on the steps or in the foyer or kitchen. Not anymore anyhow. Not after you came back after a showing of your house a year ago and found a pair of socks neatly laid in the center of your living room floor, as if you had placed them there, but you knew you hadn’t and didn’t make the sale. Then, in the weeks that followed, you woke up to more socks in the middle of the floor of the living room, dining room, or kitchen. In those weeks, incidentally, we didn’t have a kitten, so we know exactly who is the weird sock-obsessed cat.

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 I’m enjoying a fiction story that E. McD is sharing on Pen Wending is sharing. If you would like to follow this pirate short story, you can find the first chapter HERE.

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The Boy talking to me about video games: “Okay, so you have this comic based in Korea, and they’re going from earth two to earth one and they bzzzzzzzzzzzzzz .. zombie virus …. bzzzzzzz parcor bzzzzzz…… so yeah. That’s pretty insane, right?”

Me: uhhhh…yeah. Totally.

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Well, those are my random thoughts of the week. What are yours? Let me know in the comments.

Randomly Thinking: Fancy Cat Litter, Weird Wildlife Shows, Funny Dads, and Other Random Thoughts

Welcome to my random thoughts post. Continue at your own risk.

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My husband, son, and I were talking about TV shows and how when people get hit in the head or beat up, they’re rarely taken to the hospital. I was mentioning how Agatha Raisin has been hit in the head numerous times and they rarely took her to a hospital, if ever. Instead, James poured her a glass of whiskey and told her to lay down. So, then my husband theorized that the subsequent episodes after that initial one where she was hit were all a dream she was having while she was in the hospital. My son said, “Yeah. In real life, she’s actually in the hospital with part of her skull caved in.” 

Ah, teenagers. They’re nothing if not talented at graphic descriptions.

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My son will sometimes say to me, “Someone looks like they need a hug,” and he’ll hug me. He’s a teenager but he’s not afraid to say, “I need a hug,” and come get one. Now Little Miss is saying “someone looks like they need a hug,” and she will offer hugs, mainly to me and the dog. 

The other day when Little Miss said to Zooma the Wonder Dog, “Ah, Zooma, do you need a hug?”, The Boy said, “I need a hug.” 

Little Miss looked at him with a very bored expression and responded, deadpan, “Go get a hug from Mom.”

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My son pointed out this week that the Swedish Chef’s hands are real while the rest of him is a puppet. Neither of us were comfortable with this discovery.

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Little Miss gets very excited about new clothes, even underwear and socks so this week she got a pack of new underwear and decided to open them to check them out. She was having a hard time since they had taped each pair closed. 

“What?! What is this?! There is,” flinging tape off her fingers. “So much tape here! Whoever wrapped this is an overachiever!”

She’s definitely been hanging around her brother too much lately.

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I just had to share this gem that Erin at Still Life, With Cracker Crumbs left on my last Randomly Thinking post. “My week has been weird but because I am a weirdo. I have been updating my friends about our experiences with Pretty Litter everyday – per their request — I am not just randomly sending them updates on my cat’s using the litter box. Lol. However, the litter gives me anxiety because it is supposed to show if your cat has health issues so I find myself looking at them often to check.”

I just — well, I had no idea what to say about that but it certainly made me giggle because it sounded like something I would buy and then obsess over.

Luckily, if you want to know more about this litter, Erin has written a blog post all about it for you.

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My husband and I were talking at dinner one night and something (I can’t remember what now) triggered a memory for me of a call a college friend received from her dad. To explain, her dad was a somewhat serious, solemn fellow who had a very dry sense of humor. We came into the dorm one day from lunch and I went to my dorm room and Rebecca went to hers. A few moments later I heard laughter filtering down the hallway (neither of us had closed our doors yet). She comes to my room and says, “Lisa, you have to come hear this.”

She pressed the button on her answering machine, which was sitting on the floor of her sparsely decorated room, and the monotone voice of her father came through.

“Um, Rebecca, this is your father. I just wanted to remind you that, um, in order to spend money from your bank account there has to actually be money in your bank account. The bank called me today and I’ve put more money in there but you can’t keep spending money from your bank account if you don’t have money in there.”

It’s hard to describe when you can’t hear her dad’s voice, but if you can imagine a man speaking very serious with a deep voice, sounding completely unamused, then you have her father. 

My memory of him makes me think of the British comedian Jack Whitehall’s father, who I’ve seen clips of in the past and now they have a travel show on Netflix, for those of you who have Netflix.

(Please be aware that there is a swear word in this clip.)

Rebecca’s father was a little bit like Jack’s dad, but without the dirty language. 

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My daughter is now obsessed with this wildlife show on Youtube hosted by a guy called Coyote Pearson. So, yeah, this is my fault. We watched one video as part of our desert unit and it got out of control. Now she wants to watch it all the time, so I have to watch this slightly weird American travel to different countries and get bit by creatures he’s not supposed to be bit by. He’s a bit like the redneck version of Steve Irwin, without the southern accent. To continue with the above about Rebecca’s dad, he also doesn’t use dirt language. He’s completely clean but I have this awful feeling that one day we will hear about him dying doing something very stupid trying to “get the shot.”

I said to my daughter, as he reached for a sea urchin on one episode, “He’s not very bright is he?”

He got stung once.

She shook her head. “No. He’s not very bright. He’s been bitten by everything.”

He was bitten again by holding it in his palm.

“Nope,” she said. “Not very bright.”

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I’m sure you’ve never wondered what it is like inside my mind, but in case you ever have, this is it:


So, those are my random thoughts for this week. How about you? What are your random thoughts? Let me know in the comments!

Randomly Thinking: The Non-Existent Logic of 80s Television and other Random Thoughts

Welcome to my random thoughts post. Continue at your own risk.

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My husband and I have been watching a lot of 80s television the last few weeks and have realized something. There wasn’t a lot of logic in 1980s television.

One show we watched was Hart to Hart, which was a show about a billionaire couple who became detectives of sorts. It starred Robert Wagner and Stefanie Powers.

I watched Hart to Hart a couple of times as a kid at my good friend’s house. Her mother loved that show.

During the episode we watched, there was a burglar on their property and Mrs. Hart called the police. My husband was like, “He’s a billionaire with a private art collection and he doesn’t have private security?”

Later, she was kidnapped and Mr. Hart and a cop drive to rescue her. My husband said, “You’re telling me a rich white woman from Bel-Air is kidnapped and they only send one cop to rescue her?”

As we watched Mr. Hart try to rescue Mrs. Hart and she whined and whimperd the whole time I said, “Gosh, I never remember her being this whiny.”

Watching Mr. Hart fall after getting knocked out, he said, “I never remembered him being so useless.”

Later we watched TJ Hooker (with William Shatner) and wow. Talk about some bad acting and bad premises. Not only that but cop cars were always blowing up in that show. I said, “Wow. Those cars exploded on impact. They must have had some horrible gas tanks.”

Him: “Horrible safety ratings on them.”

Me: “Like riding in a death trap.”

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One day a couple of weeks ago, I spent a half an hour trying to figure out if a woman and man on a creative marketing campaign on instagram for a clothing store were a couple or not. The advertising campaign features a woman talking about her “hot boss.” The accounts of the people in the photos and videos are linked in the description so I looked at their Instagram accounts and deteremined three things. One, the girls boss is indeed very hot, two, I’m pretty sure the two are actually dating, and three, I really need a life.

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The New York Times (which I never read because it’s so biased one way now) featured a columnist last week that urged people to stop thinking for themselves because it is creating “misinformation.” Um…1984 anyone? I think you need to re-read the book and then you need to question everything you hear, read, think, and believe. NOW. This won’t sound very Christian but screw the New York Times. There’s a reason the national media doesn’t want you to question and you should question why that is.

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Various sleep issues with Little Miss, horrible dry sinuses and dry skin over the last few weeks have me Googling things like, “can an adult survive on six hours of sleep a night?”

Or, “How little sleep can a person get before they just die?”

Luckily, Little Miss is starting to sleep better and I discovered a cream for severe dry skin that is helping that issue. Saline spray helps the dry sinuses and when all else fails I pop a magnesium glycinate and it helps me fall asleep.

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I picked up a dry erase board to use for my daughter’s handwriting lessons and my kids were fascinated with it for some reason. They were taking turns drawing photos on it. At one point my son asked my daughter if she had drawn a marijuana plant. After I smacked him upside the head (that’s a joke. I didn’t do that but I did tell him she doesn’t need to know about pot at 6-years old), he drew a picture and she said, “Oh, is that from the marijuana movie?”

The Boy said, “When did you see a marijuana movie?!”

After a few moments we finally figured out she meant the “Moana movie.”

Good grief. I’m never telling my son about where hemp oil comes from again.

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I was recently looking at old journal entries from my digital journal when I found this tidbit from 2019:

“At bedtime my children become dehydrated philosophers in need of a hug,” someone shared on Facebook recently.

My children become philosophers and searches of knowledge when they should be sleeping.

“What’s a hurricane?” She asked at 10:45 at night, on a day she’d skipped her naps.

I told her and she threw in extra questions as I talked.

“It spins in the ocean and -“

“Like me when I get dizzy? Because I can spin real fast and then I get dizzy.”

“Yes, Like you when you spin and get dizzy.”

From there we somehow ended up at a conversation about lightening storms and how lightning strikes can hit a forest and cause a fire.

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I also apparently saved some weird texts I sent to my husband in there.

I mean I feel like sick sick and not just hormones or thyroid crap. I’m going to ramble some more about what I mean by sick sick. Then I’ll record Little Miss telling me this really long story about the huge booger she pulled out of her nose and all the snot that was stuck behind it and how she “pulled a The Boy” because of how long the snot was down her arm. And how she used a towel to wipe it off but she doesn’t know which towel so in the laundry room is a random snot covered towel right now. 🙄

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My son jumped off the bank infront of our house into a pile of snow, which he’d done a few times without incident. This time he jumped and our dog followed him and landed on his head and knocked his head down into his chest.

He fell over sideways into the driveway and at first I thought he’d broken something. After a few moments, I was pretty sure he was pretending but he still wasn’t moving so I said, “Hey? You okay?”

My daughter was making a snowball and she glanced at him briefly, then back at the snowball, clearly unconcerned.

“He’s breathing,” she said with little emotion. “He’s fine.”

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So those are my random thoughts for this week. What are yours? Let me know in the comments.

Randomly Thinking: My Capitalization Issue on Here, Cold Weather, Bob Ross, and The Urban Dictionary

Here are a few of my random thoughts from the last couple of weeks. Enter at your own risk.

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Have you noticed from time to time the titles of my blog posts in the WordPress Reader are capitalized weird or not at all? Maybe you haven’t, but I have and it’s driving me nuts. The reason the capitalizations sometimes aren’t right in the reader is because when I write my headlines they are in all caps in my editor (due to theme I have chosen), but when they appear in the reader they are not in all caps. So there are times I try to capitalize a word in my headline within the post editor but it appears as all caps to me so I don’t see the error until I publish it and view it in the reader.

Does that make sense? Does anyone besides me care? No. Probably not, but it really drives me crazy because I look like I’m even more incompetant than usual when that happens.

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You know what else drives me crazy about the new editor on here? I can’t find a spellchecker and the Grammerly app I have installed on my browser doesn’t work in it either. So, yeah! I now have all kinds of typos on my blog posts. I’ve tried copying the posts and putting them into Grammerly or ProWriting Aid but it’s very time consuming, so most of the time I just let the typos ride. It’s not like I’m writing for a major news publication where they never have typos. Ha. Ha. (Who wants to attend the “pubic meeting on Monday night in the high school”?)



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Someone on a MeWe (a social network) asked if my kids and I would be interested in being penpals with her kids as part of a homeschooling project. I agreed and about a week later we received three letters in the mail. I thought only my children would be receiving letters but then I ended up receiving one to me as well, which was really cool. I used to write letters back and forth with my maternal grandmother and I really miss that. The woman who wrote me said she misses the old days of writing real letters and I have to agree with her. We’re so used to instant gratification now we don’t know how to be patient for a letter.

This was further proven by my children asking if her children had Discord screennames or play Minecraft or “Why can’t we just call them instead of write a letter?”

I told them I’m teaching them patience and we all worked on letters to mail out. Of course, thanks to the two feet of snow we received, we had to wait until the end of the week to get the letters mailed out, but we did get them mailed out.

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“We are losing our minds because they aren’t in our heads anymore. They’re in our phones.” Quote by my dad.

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Watching television with my husband is always interesteing becuase he usually looks up all the actors and at some point during the series or movie to tell us what else they’ve been in. Then he tells us who out of the cast has died and sometimes even how they died (it’s usually some tragedy like drug overdose). It’s a lot like riding around our two county area with my dad except he points to houses or empty fields and tells us who use to live there and that they are all dead.

A couple of weeks ago he drove us to pick my son’s friend and during the three mile drive he randomply pointed at houses, or some empty field and said, “So-and-So used to live there. They’re dead now of course.”

By the end of the drive we all felt like we had been to a wake.


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I think it’s sad when you click on the profile of someone yelling at you on Instagram for your political views and all they have listed in their profile is their pronouns, race, and political party. Seriously? Those things are what are important to you in life? If you only identify yourself based on sexual identification, race, and political affiliation I feel seriously sorry for you because you’ve placed your faith in all the wrong things.

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Saturday night everyone’s bedroom doors were open when I sat down to read my daughter her bedtime stories: Sparta: Rise of a Warrior Nation. At least that’s what I loudly announced I was going to read to see if my son heard me.

He did.

“You’re reading her what?!”

I assured him I was actually reading her Paddington but if he wanted I would come in and read him the book on Sparta. He said that wasn’t necessary. Oh well, maybe another night.

***

Our two cats occassionally get along now, unless we notice they are getting along. If I point out that the older cat isn’t chasing the baby and reach for my camera to document the moment, the older cat jumps up and slaps the kitten the head and walks off.

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There was a depressing and disgusting news story that broke in our area this week involving a public official. He always gave me the creeps but I had never imagined he’d done what he’s charged with. I just figured he was swarmy politically and ethically. My husband’s co-worker mused how the wife of the man is always quiet and seems to blend into the background. I guessed it’s probably because she’s abused by him and was made to feel she must be submissive and stay behind the scenes.

“Yeah. You’re probably right,” my husand said. ” Of course, we all know that wouldn’t be you. You’d be more likely to just step up and say something. You don’t stand in the background. I mean, let’s face it. We know who wears the pants in this relationship.”

I didn’t know how to take that so I kicked his butt and told him to go cry in the corner like the little baby he is. Then I told him as soon as he’s done wiping his snot we’re going to dinner at whatever restaurant I pick.

That less section is, of course, a total fabrication. I believe what my husband meant is I wouldn’t allow myself to be emotionally, and possibly physically, abused and would have kicked that man’s butt before I let him make me stand in the background with my mouth shut and my head bowed, pretending our family was normal when it was not. At the same time, neither of us are really judging this woman. We have no idea what she went through and she’s as much of a victim as others in this particular case so that was the part of it all we couldn’t laugh at.

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I am very certain that once while watching Bob Ross painting I told my son he had died years ago. Very certain.

However, the other day I ordered a Bob Ross watercolor book for my daughter and while looking at it my son, a fan of Bob Ross Positive Energy Drinks, told me about all the other Bob Ross-related products available.

He said, “He knows how to market himself.”

I said, “Well, no, actually, his family really knows how to make money using his name. Since he’s been dead for years.”

My son looked grief-stricken. “Bob Ross is dead?”

I said, “Uh..yeah. We’ve discussed this. You even showed me that video one time of some animator who had created a scene with Bob Ross and Fred Rogers together in heaven.”

“Well, yeah, but I just thought –”

My son’s face fell.

“I’m sorry,” I said. “Is this like when I told you there was no Santa Claus?”

Him, “There’s no Santa Claus?”

(He didn’t really say that last line. What he really said was, “Yes! That’s what this is like!”)

Honestly, I know we talked about Bob Ross being dead because I even showed him a video about what happened to all Bob Ross’s paintings after his death. Sometimes I think The Boy simply plays too many video games and it has melted his memory.

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My son’s friends looked up their names on Urban Dictionary. I’d never heard of it before and a lot of the inforamtion on there features “no-so-nice” language, but I did look up my name for fun and found one clean description, which was a little accurate, but not completely:

“If you’re friends with a Lisa – consider yourself lucky! Lisa’s are intelligent, intuitive, and a true friend. She will always check in on you at just the right moments, and has a way of putting out all of your fires with a few thoughtful phrases of advice. The kind of advice that validates your feelings while still holding you accountable for your own actions. She has high level of patience, but don’t take her kindness for granted; she will put you in your place if you do!! She’s beautiful on the inside and out, witty sense of humor, and an all around genuine person.Lisa will call you out on your crap (Word changed to protect the innocent).”

That last sentence is especially true. *wink*

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So those are a few of my random thoughts for this week. What are some of yours? Share them with me in the comments!

Randomly Thinking: Feeling Like I’m in High School Again, TV Shows stress Me Out, and Ack! Spiders!

Welcome to my weekly Randomly Thinking post where I share random thoughts that pop into my head throughout the week. Enter at your own risk. There is a lot of saracasm, teasing and jokes and a little bit of seriousness.

I need to stop getting so emotionally invested in TV shows. I remind myself everytime I start to get upset over how a particular plot line is going, “This is fiction. This is just a TV show. These are not real people. You do not need to feel anxiety about what does or does not happen in the next hour or hour and a half.” I find the fact I have to do this, sad, quite frankly, but I am sure I am not alone.

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I have assigned Lord of the Flies to my 14-year old son for English class. We have assignments that go along with the reading as well. I haven’t read Lord of the Flies since 9th or 10th grade so I am reading it again with him and I’m going to be honest — this feels like high school again.

I don’t want to read Lord of the Flies.

I’m not really interested in it, the same as I wasn’t interested in it in high school. I feel like a teenager again when I realize I haven’t read the assigned chapters. I look at the book, tip my head back and do a little bit of flouncing and then go “Fiiiiiiine. I’ll read it! Stop bugging me.” When no is bugging me to do it, except myself. I was similar when I read Silas Marner with him but I ended up really liking that book.

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While I’ve ditched most of my social media accounts, I can’t quit Instagram just yet, mainly because I can’t quit Grant Gosch who shares an Instagram live ever Saturday night from Ocean Creek, Oregon where he shares stories he’s written, or reads stories he hasn’t written. He talks a lot about whiskey and I don’t drink whiskey but I do like watching him talk about whiskey. I call him the “Bradley Cooper look alike writer of Instagram.”

You can find him here:


***

On Tuesday, when other homeschooling mothers were probably cooking dinners from scratch all while teaching their children two languages, every subject, and making oragami swans, I made a Play-Doh bunny with my daughter.

That’s right. I’m nailing the homeschooling Mom thing over here. I did teach her some other things, of course, later, but the Play-Doh bunny was the highlight of our day. We made puppies and bunnies after we created atoms and molecules out of Play-Doh

***

I’ve been fighting with the woodstove this week and I’ve won twice. I seem to have the hardest time getting the fire to light, but we’ve needed it throughout the days due to some kind of crazy Polar Vortex moving through, dropping temperatures into the teens. I have been getting the wood from the woodpile behind our garage myself on some days and asking our son to get them on others.

I’m always worried about a spider living in the woodpile and that fear was somewhat recognized this week when I pulled out a log with a dead spider in a web. Or at least I think it was dead. It wasn’t moving and I didn’t stick around to see if it was going to. I flung the piece of wood to the back of the storage area with a quick scream. While I’m worried about the spiders, my husband worries about snakes. Luckily we mainly have non-venamous snakes here and he’d probably only encounter a garter snake, but it would be fun to hear him scream like a — well, like me.

***

Standing in the snow, in our quiet backyard one night this week, I looked around at the woods behind our house, at the peaceful town below the hill we live on, at the church on the hill on the other side of town, and I realized what a blessing it is that we were able to move here from our previous house. I love it here. I love the fact we have a little bit of country and a little bit of town around us. I love going outside to gather wood from the wood pile for our woodstove. I love that we wake up many mornings, look out and see deer in our backyard.

(I love that it is winter and the bear are hibernating too).

Our neighbors’ homes are close to us on the sides, but behind us and in front of us and a little bit down the road, and really all around us, there is plenty of country scenery to take in. Moving here really has been one of the best things we ever did for our family.

***

We played Yahtzee with our neighbor last week, as I mentioned in last weeks “Random Thoughts.” It further proved I am horrible at math.

***

In writing news, I figured out how to set up pre-orders from The Farmer’s Daughter and you can do that here, for Amazon, and here, for Barnes and Noble. I will also be offering a free ebook of the book to my blog readers via Bookfunnel as a thank you for all the support while I was writing it and sharing it here. I’ll provide an update on that when I get closer to the February 23 release date.

***

Speaking of books, I am looking forward to the release of the second novel by Robin W. Pearson, ‘Til I Want No More, which releases February 2 and is available for pre-order anywhere you buy books.

***

My husband was in a super good mood after work yesterday. It was a shame because I hadn’t had a lot of sleep the night before so he was firing 100 percent and I was batting zero. Or, was he batting 100 and I was firing zero? Well, you get my drift.

***

My son stayed with his friend at our house the other day and I told them, “no playing with guns and no lighting anything on fire.” When I got back home, they told me they’d played video games, ate snacks, and laughed for 15 minutes at a funny sounding fart. Apparently, I had given them way too much credit. Two days after the friend left, he texted my son to tell him he had corona symptoms. We’ll see how that turns out. I’ll keep you all updated.

***

We subscribed to a weekly trial of Broadway HD last week so we could watch Peter Pan Goes Wrong, a production by the Mischief Theatre Company. The concept behind the “goes wrong” plays are that there is a fictional theater group who presents plays during which everything, yes “goes wrong.” Enjoy this clip from YouTube and if you want to watch more you can either see their show on Amazon or you can subscribe to Broadway HD and cancel the subscription like we did because no one really watches Broadway shows on TV, right? Or, obviously, you can find clips on Youtube.

So those are my random thoughts for the week. What are yours? Let me know in the comments and remember, I have a profanity filter on. *wink*

Random Thoughts: The TiddlyWinks Championships And Other Random Thoughts

Welcome to my weekly Randomly Thinking post where I share random thoughts that pop into my head throughout the week. Enter at your own risk. There is a lot of saracasm, teasing and jokes and a little bit of seriousness.

***



I don’t know how the topic came up, but my son mentioned Tiddlywinks the other night and at some point he said he thought was what “old people were referring to when they think a couple is doing something inappropriate.”

I said, “Honey, no. Tiddlywinks is a game.”

So we looked up Tiddlywinks online and not only did we find what the game is but we found a Youtube link to the Tiddlywinks Singles World Championships. Yes, I’m serious.

In case you don’t know what Tiddlywinks is, here is a photo:

I offered commentary for the Tiddlywinks singles championship in a British accent because for some reason it needed to be narrated that way.

“Here we are, ladies and gentlemen. The Tiddlywinks singles championship. This is a tense moment for our finalists. Will Bob be able to flip that disc and hold on to his reign as winker of the world?”

No kidding. The term is “winker of the world.” That’s what the man who won the championship said, anyhow.

“It’s great to be the winker of the world again,” he said.

In case you need some fun, I’ve linked to the video for you, and please notice how the one man is squinting the entire time, which I think may be because he’s squinted so much trying to line up his shots. Also, full confession, I don’t remember ever playing Tiddlywinks. If you just really must know more about the game, you can find more information on this site.

***

I’m plugging through Rescue Me by Susan May Warren despite the fact that she wrote that her characters ate chocolate donuts with orange juice.

Ew. Who does that? I asked my husband that and he said “People who worship the devil.”

I mean, something sweet like that with the organge juice and making the orange juice have a bitter aftertaste. Yuck.

I was reading the section and crying, “No! Why is she pouring orange juice?! She just offered him a cake donut with chocolate icing. They’re not going to drink that are th– Oh my gosh! They drank it! She actually wrote they drank it!”

I then warned my son against the evils of people who drink orange juice while eating a chocolate donut. He promised me he would never marry a woman who believed such a thing.

“Only milk with chocolate donuts, okay?”

“Yes, Mom, I agree.”

Whew. Crisis averted. I’ll keep reading the book but this woman is on very thin ice with me right now. If she has someone drinking milk with potato chips then it’s over. Book closed and put aside.

***

I listen to this old late 40s/early 50s sitcom/radio show called Our Miss Brooks at night as I fall asleep as a way to focus my brain on something other than every day worries. I wake up at night and the show is still going. It plays through the next episode and I listen along until I pass out again. I’ve mentioned the show here before.

The plot of the show is about a teacher named Miss Brooks who lives with her landlady, Mrs. Davis, and interacts with her principal, Osgood Conklin, his daughter Harriet Conklin, Harriets boyfriend Walter Denton, and Miss Brook’s crush Philip Boyton, who is a total uptight moron who never gets how much Connie (Miss Brooks) is in love with him. He says so many stupid things that anyone walking by my room at night might hear me say things like “Good grief, you’re a moron,” or “Give up on him, Connie. He’s never going to get it!”

Anyhow, some guy transferred these shows from old reels or … I don’t know what.. to podcast form. He started uploading them in 2007 on Apple (which I didn’t realize until I looked it up for this post) and when he first did it he was all chipper like “Hey! Enjoy these reproduced old shows! If you want to buy the collection, you can go to my site here!”

By the time he hits 2019, it’s obvious the whole idea of making money off this endeavour has tanked and instead of being chipper, he starts sounding threatening: “Hey, I put all these on for you and why am I charging more now? Well, because I’m losing money on trying to be nice and I’m really tired of it. So I’m not going to be nice anymore. You want this stuff, buy it, or this podcast is gone.”

That’s not exactly what he says, but close. He does really say the thing about “I lost money on this whole thing last year,” like that is somehow the fault of the listener. It’s so depressing, I just skip over his intros now. But I guess he learned the hard way, like newspapers, that if you give people for free and then try to go back to charging them for it, they aren’t really going to be very willing to start paying for it.

***

We visited my neighbor this week because she has been very down since her grandchildren were shipped across the country to live with their dad (my daughter has also been down because these were her only in-person friends). We went down to play a round of Yahtzee. She wanted to play two but the one round made the minds of us Math/Number Illiterates (me and my son) hurt so we declined. When we walked into the house, my neighbor immediately handed me a small bag of green leaves. If it had been anyone else I would have been worried. I actually thought she was handing me loose tea, because she drinks tea, but it turned out it was catknip for our cats.

I shoved it in my pocket and didn’t think much about it until later that night at home when I walked by where I had hung up my coat and it was laying on the floor with two cats pawing at it and rubbing themselves all over it. The kitten (Scout) had been sniffing the pocket when I first hung it up but I didn’t even remember the baggie with the cat drugs at that point.

It wasn’t until I saw the fat one (Pixel) had removed the baggie from the pocket and was trying to rip into into it that I remembered. I gave them part of the catnip and decided to save the rest until later. I have to becareful, though, and make sure the drawer with the bag in it is tightly closed because the last time I had catnip and kept it in a kitchen drawer and didn’t shut it all the way, the older cat found a way to pry the drawer the rest of the way open and dig out the bag.

***

Some thoughts for world events right now: “If you’re a common sense person, you probably don’t feel you have a home in this world right now. If you’re a Christian, you know you were never meant to.” – Patricia Heaton, actress.

***

I liked this take from Fuel From the Race on all that is happening these days :

“My knees bend to no one but King Jesus. Through the mix of hatred and political haze of confusion, I know the One Who still has His place on the throne of the universe. Kings and kingdoms will all fade and vanish and yet, He will still be sovereign.”

Randomly Thinking: The Weird Things Children say and Do and other random thoughts

Welcome to my weekly Randomly Thinking post where I share random thoughts that pop into my head throughout the week. Enter at your own risk.

Why is it when I buy waffles, the children in my house no longer want them? Then, when said waffles have been eaten, a child invetibly asks “Do we have waffles?” My son does this to me all the time with ice cream as well. Like he’ll say, “I’d like some ice cream.” And I get him ice cream and then he doesn’t eat it so somone else in the family will eat it (not me because I can’t have most of the stuff in most ice creams) then he says, “Where’s my ice cream?”

The ice cream isn’t there for a week when it is eaten either. It’s there for two or three months without him touching it, and finally someone eats it.

The kids, of course, get this from my husband who will let my mom’s left over apple pie sit there for a week before he will touch it and I figure he isn’t going to eat it so I eat it and then he says, “Where is my pie?” Come on! No one leaves my mom’s homemade pie in the refrigerator for a week! Sheesh!

***

Our six-month old kitten keeps running outside when we open a door to go anywhere. We usually spend anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes chasing her between properties and under bushes. I get really tired of trying to catch her when I need to be inside teaching children or cooking or loading the dishwasher. I will finally throw up my hands and declare: “That’s it! She’s on her own! I don’t care. Let her get eaten by a bear if that’s what she wants. I’m not messing with her anymore!”

Apparently I’ve said this too much because Monday my 6-year old daughter stomped into the living room and declared: “Scout is gone. I don’t care! She can be eaten by a bear for all I care. I’m done. I’m not messing with her anymore.”

Watching her declare all this with the sincerity of a 6-year old was hilarious and made me glad I hadn’t thrown in any curse words out when I was grumbling about the kitten.

The fact her expressions even looked like mine made it all that much more creepy.

(The kitten came back in on her own ten minutes later, incidentally.)

***

One night this week I was reading a book by Charles Martin and part of it deals with the loss of a baby during labor and later their road to adoption. It made me all emotional and feel such gratitude for both my children. It was after midnight but I knew my son would still be awake. I didn’t want to climb out of bed (the dog was curled up at my feet) so I texted my son, telling him I loved him.

This was, apparently, unnerving to him.

Him: Love you too. Did something happen? Did someone die?


Me: Lol. No. Just reading a sappy book and it made me think how lucky I am to have you kids.

Him: You usually don’t text me at 12:34 so I was scared that some kid died a horrible and painful death.

Nice to know that telling my son I love him strikes fear in his heart.

***

You know you live in a small area when the most exciting news of the day is that the town 20 minutes from us is gettin’ an Aldis! (I had to pause after writing this to call my mama and tell her!). I kid you not.

The reporter who works with my husband actually called at 9 p.m. to suggest they put it up on the paper’s website as breaking news. They put that story up as breaking news, but did not post that the governor came down with COVID as breaking news. Yes, this is a small, rural area. (Update: my husband says they did post the governor’s diagnosis as breaking news, but I told him I was leaving it that they didn’t because it was funnier for my blog post. He was not amused.).

***

I was picking out some Christmas cards onine for my parents. I found one that I liked but I told my mom I didn’t feel the painting on the front could be historically accurate. I said, “It’s Mary on a donkey holding baby Jesus. She wouldn’t be on a donkey with the baby. She was on the donkey before she had Jesus. And by the time they were leaving Bethlehem, Jesus would have been a toddler because the Bible says it took the Wise Men at least two years to find him.”

Mom, as she often does, schooled me on her Biblical knowledge by telling me, “Well, actually she probably would have been on a donkey with the baby because they had to take him to the temple in Jerusalem and that has to be done when they are a newborn and in a certain amount of days.”

I don’t even remember what else she said. I was so dumbfounded on how, once again, she put me in my place when it comes to the Bible, and in such a polite way too.

***

I think felines have short memories or almost no memories at all. Every morning my husband lets our older cat outside before he goes to work. Now that the temperature has dropped, by the time I come downstairs (usually a couple hours later because even though I am awake, I don’t want to get out of bed, especially if it is cold out), she wants back in and lets me know by standing on the table on our back porch and looking in the kitchen window.

I let her in, she takes a couple of bites of food and then she goes right back to the back door to be let out again.

I let her out but I tell her “you just came in, you know it’s cold.” And less than a half an hour later when I let the dog out, the cat comes in again after crying desperately at the window. A half an hour later she wants out again, but every time she goes out she looks bewildered, as if she is saying, “It’s so cold out here. Why is it so cold out here?” I always want to say back to her, “We talked about this before. It’s cold. Remember?” It’s our routine all day long. I’m wondering if it will hit her it’s actually winter by January.

***

I’m looking at reading challenges to do in 2021 and wondering if I will actually do them. I hope I do. One of the challenges is to read one classic book a month. I definitely want to do this one, because I had already planned to read a couple more classics in 2021, including a couple of Jane Austen books and maybe another George Elliott book (even though my son has written a book report on Silas Marner, which we read last month, and declared her to be a very boring writer. She isn’t. He was simply mad that I made him rewrite the book report because he made too many jokes in the first one.)

***

My husband and I recently watched a show about old, famous estates in England. The one episode was about Princess Diana’s family’s estate at Althorp. It was fascinating and though I have seen interviews with the 9th Earl of Spencer before (Charles Spencer) and know he’s very down to earth, it was interesting to see how much work he actually does to keep the estate running and why. His main reason is to keep the history that is there in good shape because there is not only British history there, but American history as well. He liked telling the interviewer that George Washington’s family “were essentially nannies for the Althrop family.” Despite seeming nice and sincere, he couldn’t seem to keep himself from reminding Americans their first president had once been a servant to his family.

“Don’t forget your place,” he seemed to be saying.

I’m kidding, of course. He didn’t say it that way at all, but I joked during it that was what he was trying to say.

Like many from the UK (or from our family), the Earl is quite pale, which led my son to remark, “That looks like a man who would find mayonnaise spicy.”

***

Am I the only woman who doesn’t swoon at those movies about a woman falling in love with a man who she later finds out is a prince? With all the drama and attention that follows the British royal family, I can’t imagine having to deal with all that ridiculousness. Now, if that prince decides to give up his rights to the throne for me…. maybe.

***

So those are my random thoughts for the week. What are yours? Let me know in the comments.

Randomly Thinking: More crazy book descriptions and premarital handholding

Welcome to my weekly Randomly Thinking post where I share random thoughts that pop into my head throughout the week. Enter at your own risk.

I imagine most of you in the US are having some sort of Thanksgiving celebration today. So first, Happy Thanksgiving!

***

Nothing like looking up at the clock in the living room and realizing it is 20 minutes fast. Wonder how long it’s been like that? And what did I do very early in the day that I didn’t need to? This same clock was 40 minutes fast the next day even after we changed the battery. We decided it was time for the clock to be retired.

***

My son is 14 now so some of his friends are starting to “date”. A sort-of friend of his texted him the other day to tell him he had a GF (girlfriend). My son rolled his eyes. I said “It’s probably one of those girls from the Christian school he goes to.” The Boy says, “Yeah, one of those girls that doesn’t believe in premarital hand holding.”

I snorted out a laugh.

“And they don’t even look each other in the eye because that’s too much too,” The Boy continued. “Like she accidentally looks him in the eye and goes ‘oh my gosh! We’re moving a little fast here, aren’t we?'”

I said, “Well, that’s why a lot of the kids from that school get married immediately after they graduate.”

“Why?” asked The Boy. “So they can finally make eye contact? ‘Oh! I always knew your eyes were hazel!'”

I said, “Um, no not so they can make eye contact.”

The Boy’s response: “Oh.” And he went back to school work because I’m pretty sure he didn’t want to think about that.

Plus, he knew I’d remind him that I don’t believe in premarital handholding either! At least not until he’s 25 or so *wink*

***

An elderly woman at the local little supermarket was the only bright spot of my day one day last week when she offered to let me go in front of her and I told she could go ahead, I was in no rush. She said ‘thank you’ because her husband was waiting for her in the truck outside and he “might get into trouble if she didn’t hurry up.” The way she said it with a little wink just cracked me up.

***

Pretty sure a lot of women would kill for a husband like mine who randomly says after dinner, “You just go sit and rest. I’ll wash the dishes.”

***

Do you have a family of ad-libers like I do? People who watch movies or shows and occassionally sermons, and ad-lib one-liners, additional quotes, or new plot lines? If you do, you have my sympathy. It can be funny at times but when they are rewriting the entire script as the movie plays it can also be aggravating. I blame Mystery Science 3000, a show known for the way its hosts mock horribly bad movies. After The Boy and The Hubby watch their episodes, they suddenly think they can do the same thing. (Honestly, their ad-libs are funny, so don’t take my suggestion that it is annoying seriously.)

***

I wanted to update the tagline for the Kindle book ad I saw and mentioned last week. The actual tag line was “Accidentally wed to a screaming hot stranger.” Again, how do you accidentally marry someone?! My son said maybe they stumbled between the bride and groom right when the pastor said “I now pronounce you man and wife!” Even if that was possible, there is all that marriage license needing to be signed thing.

***

Have you ever looked at some of the books on Kindle Unlimited? I’ve found some good ones but I’ve also seen more than I care to of “billionaire romances.” Seriously, how many single, eligible billionaires can there be in the world? To see all these romances you would think there are thousands of them, all men, and all sexy and living alone on their sprawling 200 acre ranch, pining away for a woman. And the women — well, they are always poor and in need of rescuing but they are also always suspicious of the rich man who can rescue them because he couldn’t possibly be rich and good looking, right?

***

Our kids were playing Minecraft the other day and Little Miss told her brother she needed him to get the creepers out of the McDonalds she built (which was odd since we never go to McDonalds). He used an ax and Little Miss said, “I don’t want you to use an ax! I want you to use your hands like a real man!” I have no idea where she got such a thing. I’m guessing she’s heard The Boy say it.

***

We went to see a light display at a golf course about 30 minutes from us. Lights and light displays were installed all throughout the course, on trees, in the fields, etc. I took some vidoes to show family but forgot about the my family’s tendancy to offer commentary at about every event (see aforementioned ad-libing issue). At one point our daughter said “Is that Santa in an airplane?” My husband said, “Yep.” She responded, “That is so cringe.” She’s six.

***

We discovered The Goes Wrong Show a couple of months ago and it’s caused some serious laughing fits in our house. I highly recommend watching their show if you can find it. It is currently streaming on Britbox on Amazon. The premise is that a drama society acts out plays but something always goes wrong. They offered this skit up about a week ago for a charity event for the BBC. This is about the craziness that COVID has brought to us. Their other episodes will help you escape from current events so I have added a couple other clips of those, and one from the Royal Variety Show five years ago at the end of the post.

***

So those are my random thoughts for this week. How about all of you? Any random thoughts? Let me know in the comments.