Archive for March, 2013

We got a new refrigerator. The night before it was due to be delivered we received a call informing us of the delivery time. At six the next morning (delivery day) we received a call from Eddie reminding us when to expect delivery. Did he have to call at 6 and wake us up? I told my husband to remind me to kick Eddie in the rear when he showed up. This fridge is different than our old one as the freezer use to be on top and now it’s on the bottom. I find myself reaching in the crisper for ice. After squeezing the lettuce one too many times it finally yelled at me, “Hey, just because I’m Iceberg lettuce does not mean I make ice. Get your hands off me lady.”

As I transferred the magnets from the old fridge to the new I sorted through them. I realized there were magnets that I’d ignored and forgotten all about; you know, the way you ignore your spouse, even though he’s in the same room. I vowed to myself this time I would not let my fridge become hidden behind a sea of magnets.

Even though I like the new fridge it makes me nervous. Why would a fridge make a person nervous you might wonder? I’ll tell you. There’s a ‘timer feature.’ If the door is open one minute it starts to beeps. Since it took time to arrange all the food, it was constantly beeping. It was like being trapped in a pinball machine. I threw in mustard. It beeped. I threw in ketchup. It beeped. I felt like I was a contestant in Beat the Clock. It reminds me of my microwave which beeps to remind you to remove your heated food.

With this fridge, gone are the days of standing in front of it, holding the door open, taking an hour to take stock of the contents, closing the door and saying, “There’s nothing to eat in this house.” When I was a kid if I held the doors and waited for something magically delicious to appear my mother would yell,” You’re letting the cold air out. Get what you want and shut the door.” With this refrigerator there’s no funny business. No dawdling. Get in. Get out. There’s no mother to yell at you; the fridge does. It makes me fell like I’m 10 years old again, which explains the nervousness. I shall call this feature… the ‘mother feature.’

There’s a store in Brisbane,Australia that charges customers $5 if they just browse and don’t buy anything. The fee will be deducted from purchase, ensuring people who buy something won’t be charged. The owner is tired of people coming in the store and then buying the same goods online. If the store policy was to match online retailer prices then it would sustain its business. But to treat customers this way will drive them and any potential customers away. Not good for public relations.

Usually when I go shopping I always wind up buying more than was on my list. When the cashier asks, “Did you find everything you needed?” I answer, “Yes, and things I didn’t even know I needed.” Shopping with kids the list could grow from 2 to 22 items of unintended purchases.

I’ve been to stores with terrible customer service where I had to track down a cashier to pay for my merchandise. Then I’ve been to stores where the sales people were attentive, to the point of annoying. I hate when sales people hover and breath down my neck while I’m deciding what bra to buy. It’s personal. Go away.

I entered a furniture store and a sales girl (in flip flops) greeted me. I told her I wanted time to browse and would alert her if I found something. Apparently she did not get the hint. She followed me, the sound of her flip flops dragging across the floor since she didn’t lift her feet when she walked. I looked at tables. She followed. I looked at chairs. She followed. I looked at lights. She followed. Finally, I had enough of her hovering and breathing down my neck that I ran out of the store. Luckily, because she seemed incapable of lifting her feet she was unable to run after me. If this was Australia I would have been charged $5 to have that flip flop wearing, heavy breathing sales girl hover over me. Really not good for public relations.

The Brolly umbrella is designed with a four finger grip in the handle so you can continue texting while walking in the rain. You can buy one at www.brollytime .com for $20. I wonder if this umbrella’s strong and sturdy or if it will turn inside out from a strong wind gust. Wouldn’t it be great if the umbrella came equipped with sensors to warn you if you’re about to walk into a pole while texting. Imagine the next storm with people unknowingly poking one another with their Brolly umbrella because they’re to busy texting to look up. Poke the wrong person in the ear and that’ll cause a fight. With time I’m sure this umbrella will come in miniature sizes for kids.

The time has come for a dual handle umbrella. They have bicycles built for two, why not umbrellas? With such an umbrella you don’t have to worry about touching the other person germs and you don’t have to worry who’s on top (hand that is.)

We all know the person who gets caught in a freak thunderstorm. This person shows up at your door, dripping wet. They take off their coat; shake it out all over your new floor. They remove their hat and toss it on your new couch. They don’t follow the path of newspapers you lay out for them to the bathroom so they could dry off. They walk around, shoes squishing, leaving damp footprints. You want to yell at your husband, but don’t because his umbrella is in the back of your car.

A good sandwich starts with a good cut of meat. Dana is the deli lady at my local grocery store who cuts all my meat. Until Dana, I had people who didn’t understand the word ‘thin.’ I’d order ham sliced thin and they’d slice it thick, giving me a ham steak. Since I order all my deli meats the same way you could say, “Sliced thin,” is my deli mantra. I don’t like when you order a pound of cheese and it’s cut so thick that one slice equals one pound. Dana understands this and slices all my meat thin, the way she would for her mother, she tells me. I’m grateful to her mom.

Once you get the meat for the sandwich you then get the bread. Will it be white, wheat, rye or a roll? If it’s a roll, will it be round, knotted, Kaiser, sub or sesame? Growing up it was always bologna and cheese on Wonder bread. It was understood bologna went on Wonder bread and only Wonder bread.

Once the bread is selected you must pick the toppings. Will it be lettuce, tomatoes or onion? If you choose onion then you must decide if it’ll be white onion, Vidalia onion or caramelized onion. If it’s caramelized onion allow yourself more sandwich prep time.

Next, you must choose a condiment – will the winner be ketchup, mayo (which can’t go on meat as it’s not kosher) or mustard? There are about 100 different kinds of mustard. There’s regular, spicy brown,Dijon, honey mustard (good for pretzel dipping) or grainy mustard. I love any and all mustards. I love the grainy, but don’t eat it in public as the seeds get caught between my teeth. I’d rather people ask what I ate for lunch rather than seeing what I ate.

This weekend I sank my teeth into a delicious thinly sliced ham sandwich thanks to Dana, my deli lady, who made it all possible.

Our refrigerator is getting old and since it’s having plumbing problems we had to disconnect the ice maker. Why is it always the plumbing that’s the first to go? Now we will have to make ice the old fashioned – using ice trays. I would venture to guess most kids don’t know what an ice tray is. My kids saw an ice tray for the first time when we stayed at an old beach motel. When I removed it from the freezer they looked at it in puzzlement and asked what it was. We explained its function and how it worked. They scratched their heads, trying to make sense of it all. When they inquired if we also had to hunt and kill fresh game for all our meals when we were little that I knew they thought we were from the dinosaur era.

I know they probably thought if we stayed at a hotel we’d be living like civilized people. One of the first things we do when we check in to a hotel is fill the ice bucket. It doesn’t matter if anyone wants a glass of ice water; we fill it to the brim. I guess it’s our way of saying, “This is home, for awhile.”

Have you ever had the misfortune of standing behind the wrong person at the ice machine? He or she is obsessed with having the exact amount of ice. They take some ice, look at their cup and dump some out. They hold the glass up to light as though mentally weighing the ice and add some more back in. Finally, they add the soda which overflows and makes a mess. When they pour the soda out, some ice cubes follow. So, they count the cubes left in the glass and unhappy with the amount start the whole process over. This is one time an ice tray comes in handy.

Women in a Cornell University study were more likely to perceive mothers who served a vegetable at dinner as thoughtful compared to those who didn’t. Those who didn’t serve a veggie were viewed as “boring” or “self-absorbed.”

Why, when I was a kid I would have given anything for my mother to quit making veggies which she then forced me to eat. When you’re a kid you love eating at the friends’ house with the coolest mom whose idea of a veggie is ketchup. You love her because she serves cake for dinner and ice cream for dessert.

It wasn’t until my kids were older that I started serving salad as a staple at dinner. When my kids saw the bowl on the table they naturally assumed we were having soup as until then that’s all I used it for. My kids didn’t know you could eat salads outside restaurants.

I’m curious if these same women would judge a single father who serves his kids McDonalds for dinner (sans the veggies) the same way.

When my husband elects to cook dinner he is hailed as a hero. Even though there maybe no carrots or peas on the plate, the man is loved for the effort. Yet, because he is a man who made effort women would judge him to be a loving father, the same way a woman should judge another mother who works to feed her kids; veggies or no veggies.

Space invaders come in all shapes and sizes. To a guy his girlfriend’s toothbrush resting on his bathroom sink symbolizes much more than good oral hygiene. It screams marriage. It’s one thing for her to shower in his bathroom, but leaving her toothbrush is downright pushy. She’s a space invader. If he lets her toothbrush in – what’s next – sharing closet space? We all know it begins with a drawer – no bigger than a sock drawer.

Recently I viewed my husband as a space invader when we were remodeling the downstairs and he moved his razor from his downstairs bathroom to my upstairs bathroom. Looking at his razor I realized, I love the guy, but not enough to want to share my space. He could have put his razor in the kids’ bathroom, but he chose mine. I wonder why. Perhaps it’s because we share a bed that he assumed I would welcome his razor with open arms. Yep, I bet you that’s it. I refrained from saying anything as the guy is working hard to give me the kitchen of my dreams. Yet, every time I looked at his razor I wondered how long it would be there and toyed with the idea of hiring professionals to move along the remodeling so the razor could return to its proper place – out of my bathroom.

I don’t understand my feeling this way because when we first married we shared a bathroom and never had a problem. We brushed together. We flossed together. Life as a newlywed couple who flossed together couldn’t have been better.

With time came a house with multiple bathrooms – one for him and for her. He put his manly stuff in the men’s room and I put my girly stuff in the women’s room and never looked back. I’m ok with having my battery operated toothbrush and my soft head, dental approved toothbrush (I get ay my bi annual cleanings) being the only brushes in my toothbrush holder. I don’t know what I would have done if his toothbrush suddenly mingled with mine. How does one return something to a space invader who’s also your spouse? Do you put it in a box, with a big, red bow and tell them it’s an early anniversary gift? Do you write about it in a blog and hope they get the hint?

We would have had an even bigger problem had his hair brush made its way into my bathroom. I think the only logical way to have solved that problem would have been to list his items on Craigslist. Sometimes you have to get tough with a space invader.

While my husband is working on our kitchen we won’t be able to cook in it; a dream come true. We will be able to eat simple meals, like cereal that require no pots or pans. I’m ok with this. Since I’m not a morning person and don’t like to eat large meals when half asleep, my breakfast usually consist of cereal. There are 3 people in my house and what amazes me are the 12 boxes of cereal in our pantry – all opened. You’d be right to think some of them are stale. They sit on the shelf, in the stale section.

My kids knew if they wanted a homemade breakfast they had 3 options: 1) Wait for the weekend and ask their father. 2) Go to a friends house.  3) Wait till we went on vacation.

Being on vacation is the only time I eat a hearty breakfast. I look around the restaurant and am surprised to see people awake, engaging in conversation and looking like they are enjoying themselves. I participate in this strange lifestyle until we return home and I resume my morning grumbling over my cereal bowl.

An article in my local newspaper reported cereal flavors are making their way to other products such as lip balms and cereal flavored vodka, milk and ice cream. Betty Crocker has cereal flavored muffin mixes. I’m surprised it’s taken this long for cereal to branch out. My husband prefers cereal that colors his milk; you know – the sugar flavored cereal rather than the fiber filled cereal. When he’s done he’s drinking pink or chocolate flavored milk.

Some cereals have found their way to the toppings bar at yogurt places, having their place alongside sprinkles, cherries and nuts.

There’s the rare occasion we have donuts for breakfast. In my house eating jelly donuts can cause hard feelings and incite arguments when the other person’s jelly donut has more jelly than yours. Jealously rears its ugly head when my husbands donut is filled top to bottom with jelly and mine has a pea size amount. I take a bite and get dry dough. My husband takes a bite and jelly oozes out from all ends, spilling onto his plate; when I reach over to scoop up some jelly I’m told, “Step away from the jelly and nobody gets hurt.” It’s not fair. Any man who does not share his jelly does not deserve to eat fresh cereal. Let him eat stale. We have plenty.