The Game of Life (Subtitled: Happy 13th Birthday, Daughter)

Whenever we play The Game of Life, Sissy always takes the college path so she can become a Veterinarian. Then she purchases the mobile home as her “Starter Home,” eventually upgrading to the Double Wide when the time is right. She collects kids which she stacks up in the back of her car like so much firewood because there are too many of them to sit upright in the seats. Other than that, she travels the board, learning sign language and voting. It never matters to her that she doesn’t make it to Millionaire Estates. She’s perfectly happy to spend the rest of her days (after trading in her car for a big shoe) there in Countryside Acres. Do you remember the earlier version of Life where you had to go to the POOR FARM if you didn’t have enough moola to make it to Millionaire Estates? Rude, totally rude, and who WOULDN’T burst into tears when that happened. Anyway, it’s not always about you and your fear of the Poor Farm. Back to Sissy…

It occurred to me that the way Sissy PLAYS Life is the way she LIVES life: just going nuthin’-to-ninety for what she wants, whether it’s sanctioned by the Thought Police or not. But really, Sweetie? Double Wide instead of the Executive Cape Cod??

That’s what we love about her. She’s her own person. Doing her own thing. She always was her own person. Blossoming into another own person. Person within a person. Endless people, capable of being and doing an endless variation of wonderful things. Kindof like when it was the 80’s and you would look into the mirror backwards while holding another mirror so you could check on your amazing French braid? And you would see your amazing braid but also your face looking at your braid, looking at your face, looking at your braid and so on into infinity. Is it just me with the French braid analogy here, or do you get where I’m going with this??

Really, she is the most beautiful thing in the world to us. And yes, she does do a French braid sometimes with her thick and glossy, long hair. But it’s not the hair that makes her so beautiful. And it’s not the freckles, although they are the fashion accessory of the year.  Did you know about the freckles thing?? They’re actually selling KITS so you can give yourself make-up freckles to bring yourself into alignment with the Season of Freckles. That’s demented especially when you consider that you can get freckles for FREE if someone with freckles (me) rubs noses in a cute, cuddly way with someone without freckles (Sissy). You’re welcome, Sissy. And yes, everyone knows this is how freckles are transferred so I’m not sure why people are buying kits.

For the hair, for the freckles, for everything she is, outside…and in…she is so beautiful. She holds the key to our hearts. And to celebrate her, we’ve given her a giftie each day for the last twelve days. And today, on the thirteenth day, on the occasion of her 13th birthday, we gave her a necklace with a tiny key on it to represent all she is to us. Clever, yes? It goes along with the freckles. Everyone knows there’s a correlation between cleverness and freckles.

So Happy 13th Birthday, My Beautiful Teen-ager. And no, I’m not crying. I know you hate it when I cry. I just ate something spicy and my nose is running a li’l bit, that’s all. Your father and I are so proud of you, and all you are. You (well, and that boy named Sonny who’s always hanging around our house) are the most wonderful gifts we will ever receive in our lives. And we are so blessed and privileged to sit beside you and watch how your Game of Life unfolds.

We Skipped the Light Fandango

And by quoting Procol Haram’s “Whiter Shade of Pale” here, what I’m trying to say is that I spent all day – ALL DAY – installing a ceiling light/fan-dang-o combo in Sonny’s room.  Did I mention that the instructions indicated it was supposed to take 120 minutes to install, but instead took ALL DAY?!?  Seems like I may have mentioned that “ALL DAY” part already.  But it bears repeating because it took ALL DAY TO INSTALL THE CEILING LIGHT/FAN-DANG-O!

Thanks for getting all up in my kool-aid, and wondering what took me so long.  In which case, I’ll have you know that it may have been the not one, but TWO subsequent trips to the hardware store for crap we didn’t know we needed until we got back from the hardware store the first time with the fan.

Or perhaps it was the panicked call to Neighbor Man to ask about the color coded wires we DIDNT HAVE coming out of the ceiling.  The fan instruction booklet said to connect the black wire from the light/fan-dang-o to the black wire from the ceiling, ditto blue wire, ditto white wire, ditto green wire.  But surprise!  Once we got past the black wire, we only had a red wire, a yellow wire and a bare wire-colored wire coming from the ceiling.  And when the think tank assigned to the pressing wire color-coding problem is an 11 year old boy and his friend, another 11 year old boy (who are both only in it because they were promised milkshakes at the end of the install), it’s wise to call in a former electrician who lives next door and who brings over his own Geiger counter when weighing in on wire colors.  (Or it may have been a voltmeter, but Geiger counter makes it sound like we were handling high levels of radioactive moronicy, so we’ll go with Geiger counter.  clickclickclickclickclick)

So the whole day passes like this, clickclickclickclickclick, barely holding on until it’s milkshake time.  Until finally, finally, the sun is setting and my 11 year old dream team and I (Neighbor Man and his Geiger counter left an entire lifetime ago, I wonder why) are standing beside the wall switch wearing sunglasses.  Don’t ask.  It was falling drywall and lack of safety glasses that led to the brilliant sunglasses idea.  Hey, go safe or go home!  Also?  Our future is so bright, we gotta wear shades.  And yes, I win this round of “An 80’s Song for Every Moment in Life” game we enjoy playing by quoting that 1986 song by Timbuk3.  Because turns out, there IS an 80’s song for ceiling fan-dang-o installations.

Anywho, back to Sonny and his bright future standing beside the wall switch.  He throws it, the light goes on immediately and the fan starts to turn.   And slowly picks up speed. And…

speaking of Geiger counters

Click click click.  Clink clink clink.  Ca-clink clink clank clank CLANK!  CLANK WHUMP!  CLANK WHUMP!!!

Oy.  I turn off the switch, usher everyone out and close the door.  No amount of sunglasses will protect us from what’s going on in there…so we may as well go for milkshakes.  A promise is a promise afterall, even if the fan-dang-o install is a little more “death trap” than originally anticipated.  And just to clarify, when I said, “We skipped the light fandango,” right there at the beginning, in the title of this blog, what I REALLY meant was: I wish we skipped the whole light damn-fan-go thing.

Happy Birthday, America!

And really, where else but IN America could you find a patriotic fabric like this??  I was buying my own patriotic fabric to make 4th of July pillows when I came across this little gem-of-a-pattern.  (And yes, 4th of July pillows are something we’re doing.  We’re all doing it.  Note to self for next year, ‘kay?)

Patriotic Magic Mike

I’m a pretty hip-to-the-jive type person.  Just look at what I know on the 4th of July pillow front, for example.  But even I have to admit that this fabric has me stumped.

America, as a country, is super dope and all…but what in the what?!!  WHAT is going on here??  I mean, I get the red-white-and-blue thing.  But the buff dudes goin’ all Magic Mike on us?  That’s extremely puzzling.  Founding Fathers reimagined as highschool varsity athletes, perhaps??  Note star crotch boxer guy.  John Hancock much?!  Buh-dum-bump!

God bless the U.S.A.