Thursday, August 15, 2013

Fun Flashback!

Just for fun, I thought I'd see what I was blogging about a year ago. At about this time last year, The Hillbilly and I took a trip to Georgia. On that trip, this happened:

 So. I'm back from vacation. The Hillbilly and I spent 10 days traveling to see family in Georgia and Missouri. Along the way we drove through Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Illinois, and Missouri. Whew!

It was a great trip. You can see some of the  pictures in my last post. Along the way home, while driving through Arizona and California's Mojave Desert, it got...shall we say, hot.

I was very thankful for air conditioning. I was also grateful that we weren't trying to cross this desert in a covered wagon or even in one of the old jalopies of the Dust Bowl refugees. Even in my very comfy air-conditioned car, the sun felt hot as it beat down through the windows onto my legs. The windows were quite warm to the touch.

It was this situation that indirectly led The Hillbilly to put his foot in his mouth. Again. And to get into trouble with me. Again. Here's what happened.

We were still driving through the desert, but the sun had begun to set, and the air was cooler. The Hillbilly, as he often does, reached across the car at put his hand on my...knee. It was my knee, honest. (My children read this blog, you know.)

And then The Hillbilly said:
"You're not as hot as you were before."
And I reacted like this:

. . .

. . .

. . .

Poor Hillbilly. He spent the next five minutes explaining that he meant physically hot ... I mean as in temperature.. The sun wasn't shining...
Yeah. I did.

So am I  too mean? Or just mean enough?
Be sure to read his side of the story here.

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Tuesday, August 13, 2013

A Memory

With school starting up again, I was thinking about my children's school days. 
Ben and Alyssa back in the day! No, Ben is not actually cross-eyed. He's just a boy. You know how they are.
This brought up a memory.

When Alyssa was in elementary school, I went to pick her up one day. My sister Chris was with me. Chris hadn't had any children yet, and she treated my kids as if they were her own. As we waited, I started to tell her what Alyssa had worn to school that day so she would be easier to spot.

Chris said, "What she's wearing? You mean you don't even know what your own daughter looks like? I know what she looks like!"

About that time, the bell rang, and the doors opened, erupting with hundreds of children. It was a lot of children! It was a roiling mass of children! You know the scenes from the move World War Z with the zombies (fast zombies!) crawling over each other? It was like that!

And my sister looked at me and said, "What did you say she was wearing?"

Sunday, August 4, 2013

The Hillbilly Explains Laps

Let's start off the week with a few words from My Hillbilly:

The Facts About Laps!

Oh!  You thought I was going to talk about swimming or running laps!  How could you think that?  I mean that is just work that is called exercise!  So no, today we are going to talk about the laps that we all have when we sit!

1st.  Laps are very important!  When we were small children and we were hurt or frightened, we wanted a lap to sit in for comfort.  Though my mom’s lap is the only lap in which I remember sitting, (boys usually get too big for that fairly quickly), I am sure there were others.  Laps were very important to our psyches!  But also our laps are very important for picnics and such.  I mean on what would we set our plates or fishing tackle boxes, etc.?
Family having a picnic
By Wiliamart (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

2nd.  Laps can be embarrassing.  For instance, if you spill something in your lap from the aforementioned picnic, you can suddenly look like you wet your pants or at best, look like you are a klutz. 

 My lap was once a part of an embarrassing experience.  I was on either a first or second date and was talking to the girl’s dad (getting him to like and be comfortable with me), when suddenly my date came into the room, hopped into my lap and threw her arm around my neck!  Alrighty then!  Be a cool and suave hillbilly!  Do not show that you are embarrassed!  Give everyone the impression that this happens all the time.  Smile at the girl!  Then look at her dad.  Do not show fear!  Make sure that he realizes that you were completely innocent in this.  

Looking back at this, I have realized a couple of things!  The girl, who was a nice and sweet girl, was giving both of us a not too subtle message.  Dad, The Hillbilly is my date and he came to see me.  Hillbilly, you need to get on the stick and start spending more time with me!  I got the message!  I don’t know how it all went down with Dad.
William Merritt Chase [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

3rd.  Laps can cause trouble!  A common one is a battle between children on which child gets into your lap! Around here, sometimes they all win, which means I win! Unless they all win at once which means I get piled on.

 Probably though, the most trouble my lap got me into was when I was around 19 years old.  My girlfriend and I were at a high school basketball game.  One of the varsity cheerleaders, came walking by and fell into my lap and arms!  What?  Of course I caught her!  I mean I had to be careful for her safety!  Well, that was the start of a bad night.  I mean, I was innocent!  But all night long, beginning then, I heard from my girlfriend ---- She did that on purpose!  She planned that!  I didn’t know and didn’t care!  However, my girlfriend did care.  She might have been right; I don’t know!   The cheerleader was a ditzy blonde, so anything is possible.  I just know that it did not lead to a good night!

Back to the importance of laps. If Cynthia has had a bad day, letting her talk it out while sitting in my lap is always a good thing.  Another example of the importance and the fun of laps was recently again shown to me.  The Princess, now 7 years old, stayed the night with us.  The Princess, since the beginning, has always thought my lap was hers.  Until she became too big, she thought of it as her sleep machine.  She would get in my lap, have me scratch her back, and promptly go to sleep.  

The Princess and The Hillbilly

At any rate, while staying the night, she was watching the movie Brave and eating popcorn.  I was reading the paper and had planned on starting a project.  About 15 minutes into the movie, The Princess began sidling up to me and said, “This part of the movie is kind of scary to me”.  The next thing I know, she is sliding the newspaper over and getting on the edge of my lap.  I put the paper down and let her get more comfortable.  
The Princess on Grandpa's lap

This was the beginning of "Grandpa, will you scratch my back?"  Which then led to her giving both Cynthia and me a running commentary of the movie, interspersed with "Don’t stop scratching my back. Do the spider thing, (where I take my hand and act like it is a large spider crawling up her back – to her ears – then to the top of the head). She then says, “That always gives me goosebumps!"  Then she says such things as, This next part is my favorite part of the movie. This next part is the funniest.  This next part makes me sniff (sad), followed on cue  by sniffing, and so on.

  This all continued with a second movie, Ice Age Two.  After about 2 to 2 ½ hours of this, I got my lap back.  It was a riot!  I didn’t get any of my project completed but what is another day or two?  Laps have a time limit!  The kids will get too big, too independent, too smart, and decide they don’t need those laps any longer.  You gotta make use of them while you can!

From the Hillbilly’s Corner