Over the River and Through the Woods: Long Drive Ahead for Thanksgiving this Year?


Recently, on a day when it was about fifty-five degrees outside, my husband proclaimed it was far too raw for him to go out and grill the steaks we were going to have for dinner. This is the same man who several years before, made me ride three hours with him to his parent’s house for Thanksgiving, in subzero temperatures, in a car with a broken heater.

I voiced my concerns several times about not wanting to go, as becoming a human ice sculpture oddly didn’t appeal to me, but he demanded that we would be there—dead or alive. Realizing it was no use to argue with him, I layered myself in several sweaters, scarves, and blankets and we set off on our journey across the arctic tundra.

About an hour into the trip he got pulled over for speeding. When the officer came over to the car he asked what the hurry was, Tim—even though he prides himself on always going at least two hundred miles per hour over the speed limit—fed the cop the line that he had no idea he was going so fast. The officer eyed me curiously—probably because my teeth were chattering faster than the car had been going. “You all right, Miss?” he asked.

“Y-y-y-y-yes, officer, I’m j-j-just a tad c-c-c-cold.” I managed to get out through blue lips that were difficult to move. Tim confessed that the car heater was broken. Now more concerned with that than the Indie 500 race Tim had been simulating, he told us he hoped we didn’t have a long drive ahead of us. I stated—through heavy layers of steam—that we were making a three hour trip to Tim’s parents’ house for Thanksgiving.  Tim shot me a look, as if I were trying to make him look bad.

“Why would anyone in their right mind travel all that way with a broken car heater on a day like this?” The officer asked. “I’ll let you off with just a warning as long as you get this pretty lady a nice big, hot cup of coffee someplace very soon.” Tim agreed, shot me another look, and we drove off.

“Do you really think you need coffee?” Tim asked—not feeling the effects of the cold nearly as much as I because his core is made from ice—“We’re already behind schedule and my mother won’t be happy if we’re late.”

“W-w-w-would she be h-h-h-happy if I fr-fr-fr-froze to death? Wait, d-d-don’t answer th-th-that, just g-g-get me that c-c-c-coffee, please.” Sighing his most exasperated, put-upon sigh, he pulled off the highway and into a parking lot of some local donut hole-in-the-wall. Then, with an attitude, went in and bought me a hot beverage.

“You owe me,” he said, with a look of disdain. I grabbed the cup and clung to its warmth like my life depended on it—which it probably did—and we sped off.

“D-d-don’t go s-s-so fast, the n-n-next cop m-m-might not l-l-let you off th-th-the hook,” I warned.

“Look, I wouldn’t have had to speed if it wasn’t for you. First, you complained on and on before we left that a little cold weather should keep us from such an all-important event that the fate of the world depends upon. Then you had to bat your eyelashes at that cop so I’d be forced to go way out of my way to get you a coffee.”

I gave up trying to argue, because—as usual—there was no talking any sense into him, and decided to concentrate my energies on consuming my coffee before it turned to ice. I said nothing for several miles.

“Are you trying to give me the cold shoulder?” Tim asked.

“What other k-k-kind of sh-sh-shoudler could I give you, g-g-given the f-f-fact that it’s about t-t-ten degrees in the c-c-car?” I countered.

We rode in silence the rest of the way.

By the time we got there, I could no longer feel my limbs. Tim jumped out of the car and scrambled for the house. He turned back and saw that I hadn’t yet moved. “Hurry up,” he said, “we’re already late!” Instead of trying to help me open the door, he stood and watched in impatient annoyance as I struggled to grasp the door handle with the icicles that had once been my fingers. I then slowly hoisted my frozen legs out of the car, and attempted to walk up the driveway with all the grace a block of ice can muster. Tim rolled his eyes.

“My mother will not be pleased that you made us late like this,” he said as we got to the front steps. And he was right, because as soon as we walked through the door, the reception we got for our tardiness was far colder than any part of the car ride had been.

Moral of the story: If you find yourself making a journey this holiday season with a busted car heater—at your husband’s insistence—and he happens to get pulled over for speeding, ditch your husband for the cute cop and live happily ever after riding around in a nice, warm  police car.  😉






A Step in the Wrong Direction


My husband and ladders do not mix. I have never seen anyone in my life do so many dumb things on—or with—a ladder.

You know that top step on a ladder, which clearly states in bold letters Do Not Step Here? My husband sees this as a challenge to his manhood and he’ll defiantly make a point to stand on that top step. As is that’s not enough to show the ladder who’s boss, instead of getting down to move the ladder across the room, he’ll jog it across the room while standing on the top step.

Several years ago he was hanging a stone angel on our house. He’d just got it in place—amazingly without incident—and headed back down the ladder. He then proceeded to pull the ladder away from the house, but after only a few feet from the house it became stuck. He kept tugging at it.

“I don’t understand why I can’t budge this thing,” he said, tugging harder.

I looked up and to my absolute horror saw the ladder was stuck between two power lines. Did I happen to mention the ladder was metal? I guess the angel must’ve been looking out for him because, quite shockingly, it didn’t prove to be a shocking experience for him.

On a different occasion, there was a huge windstorm in which he decided to wait till the very last moment to take the gazebo top off. It was incredibly dangerous, so it needed to be accomplished quickly. Suddenly, while he’s on top of the ladder—again, on the top step—he stops doing what he’s doing a pulls out his phone.

“What on earth are you doing?” I called up to him.

“I just got a text from Jeremy and I’m trying to respond.”

“Seriously?” While you’re teetering on a ladder in the near hurricane winds you find it necessary to text?”

“Yes,” was his reply.

Of course if that had been me texting him in that same situation—or even if he’d just been relaxing in his chair—he’d never respond to me that quickly, if at all.

Then there was the one time when a ladder was needed, yet he and my father didn’t bother to use one. We were at my parent’s house and my husband and my dad were outside fixing something on the roof. I went outside and found my husband flailing around, dangling mid-air from a rope on one side of the house, while my father stood on the ground on the other side of the house holding the other end of the rope. Both of them laughed their heads off, in that way guys have of doing whenever they’re doing something dumb or dangerous. I wasn’t amused.

There was yet another incident, not on a ladder but on some new pool stairs we were putting together for our above ground pool. I went inside the house for a moment and came out to see my husband making his way up to the top of these stairs—which wasn’t up against the pool yet, or supported by anything else for that matter. I yelled out, telling him to get down. He ignored me, oblivious to the obvious danger involved. I dashed across the yard and grabbed hold of the side of the stairs, trying desperately to keep it balanced. He looked at me as if I had three heads.

I told him if he’d gone up to the top of that thing it would’ve toppled, and he would’ve toppled off with it. It took him a good five minutes to finally realize I knew what I was talking about and then he was put out about it.

As he continues to unsuccessfully climb the ladder of home improvement projects, I will continue to hold my breath, pray, and keep my fingers crossed that whatever miniscule amount of common sense this man has will increase—at least a few steps—above what it is now.



All Keyed Up


Unfortunately, the man who holds the key to my heart also holds the keys to about twenty-three thousand other things. Apparently he thinks it’s not manly if he doesn’t own at least as many keys as he does tools. I bet he doesn’t even know what half of them go to and that many of them haven’t  unlocked anything since the Summer of ’92. Even so, they’re all treated like sacred relics.

Recently, he thought himself clever by splitting his keys up into three separate sets. So in other words, multiply the number of times he already loses his keys by three. He now keeps the Jeep key by itself, and by itself it’s gotten lost in several places including stores, the house, and the beach. It also went through the washing machine, twice.

Speaking of his Jeep key, we recently went on a day-long bike trip. I reminded my husband that day of how easily it could slip out of his pocket if it were by itself. Yet he was adamant that it only made sense to keep the key separate. When we finished our bike trip and got back to the Jeep he couldn’t find his key. After a very long escapade of backtracking all over the place on our bikes we finally found it. Did he learn his lesson? Not a chance.

He also frequently loses his other sets of keys, most recently at the grocery store, but he was boastfully proud as he still had the jeep key in his pocket. He’s also locked the Jeep key in the Jeep on several occasions.

I guess I really shouldn’t complain  because a least his key situation isn’t embarrassing like it once was–he used to keep a set of toenail clippers on his keychain. He denies he did this, and will swear up and down they were only fingernail clippers, but don’t believe him.

I live in fear that one day he’ll become one of those old men with a twelve thousand keys hanging off his belt loop, the likes that can only to be rivaled by a jail warden’s collection. Hopefully—if that day ever comes—the toenail clippers won’t make it back to complete the ensemble.



“You Look Fine, Let’s Just Go!”


Some women have husbands who shower them with compliments and swoon with sweet adoration when their lovely wives walk into the room. Some women have spouses who tell them their beauty is unsurpassed. The best I can ever get out of my husband is “You look fine.” and that’s when he hasn’t even bothered to look up from his iPhone.

If we’re going out and he’s decided I’m taking too long, or I tell him I’ve got to change my clothes or brush my hair, I get the good ole standby of “You look fine, let’s just GO!” If I rolled in a hog pen, electrified my hair, and had a festering poison ivy rash all over my face I’m sure I’d receive the same input.

Not that I’m complaining, but it would be nice–once in a great while–to hear him randomly gush that I have such an adorable, angelic appearance that he just can’t see straight. Okay, maybe that would be pushing it.

Basically the only other rare compliment I get from him is the kiss of death, otherwise known as, “You look good today!” spoken with stark emphasis on the word “today,” as if it’s an extraordinary event. His face wears an expression of great astonishment when he says it and he delivers it in the same manner in which someone might proclaim, “I saw a flying saucer today!”

If I call him on the subject, he snickers and finds it all quite amusing. It’s be great if he said “You look beautiful” and not just in a Christmas-is-coming-and-I-want-something-really-good-so-I’m-going-to-butter-you-up kind of a way, but in an all out proclamation. A proclamation said with so much adoration that hearts were dancing in his eyes. But of course, if that ever happened I’d firmly believe an alien had emerged from the above aforementioned spaceship and took my husband’s place–which actually might not be such a bad thing. 😉




Where’s the Ketchup?


If I had a dime for every time my husband asked me where something was–when it was right there in plain sight–I’d be out cruising around in my Lamborghini convertible right now instead of writing this blog.

Without fail, Tim constantly asks me where this is, where that is, and where sixty-seven other things are on a daily basis. For example, he’ll pad out to the kitchen, open the refrigerator door, and then stand there staring into it, dumbfounded, mouth agape, asking me where the ketchup is. I tell him it’s in the refrigerator. He’ll inform me it is most definitely not in there, as he continues to stare catatonically into its depths.

“Have you actually looked?” I’ll ask.

“OF COURSE I’VE LOOKED! IT’S NOT IN THERE!!!” he’ll vehemently hiss, as if I’ve either done something devious with it or I’ve just asked the stupidest question on earth.

I sigh and tell him to step aside so I can find it for him, to which he’ll re-iterate arrogantly that it’s most certainly not in there.


“Found it,” I’ll say, handing it to him .003 seconds later since it was of course front and center on the top shelf–practically flashing a neon ketchup sign.

“BUT IT WASN’T THERE!” he’ll wail, accusing me of hiding it on purpose and then, by some form of pure evil magic, producing it out of nowhere to make him look stupid.


He and I have vastly different definitions of what it means to look for something. Call me crazy, but for me it means what you think it means. For Tim, it means doing absolutely nothing–with blindfolds on–and if it doesn’t somehow mysteriously leap into his hands, it isn’t there.

This doesn’t just happen with condiments either. He could be standing in front of his sock drawer wondering where his socks are; at his workbench and be unable to find his tools; or out in a wide open field and not see the tractor right there in front of him. It doesn’t matter where it is, or what it is, because if he’s ‘looked for it’ and can’t find it, then it isn’t there.

Of course, that would be my cue to run to his rescue. After many years of marriage I know this cue well. I don’t mind though, as it’s actually quite amusing to see the look on his face when I easily come across whatever it was that wasn’t there.

By the way, did I mention about the time he couldn’t find his hat? It was on his head…