B reviews,  Buddies,  Bug,  house stuff!,  I forgot to tell you this earlier,  place holder posts,  the sticks

odds and ends


I have a bunch of odd things to share but not really a whole blog post worth of content for any one subject. So how about I do a catch-up brain-dump that will probably end up being pretty long?

Alrighty! I love it that you are so agreeable.

First up: Summer is here. I guess it’s technically still Spring but we’ve definitely been enjoying bathing suit and flip flop weather both at the beach and out in the sticks. I turned on the swamp cooler for the first time last week and felt terribly guilty. Like I should wait for it to really be sweltering or something.

I LOVE the swamp cooler. It must bring back memories from my childhood or something, though I don’t think we had one when I was a kid. There’s just something so comforting about the cool air and that funny swampy smell. I love it. I also love that you don’t have to stress about keeping all the doors and windows closed, which is really key when you have dogs and kids who like to come and go like they were born in a barn.

drive right in!

I never showed you the wicker set my mom picked up at an estate sale for forty bucks a while back. What a steal. She’s letting me borrow it until she gets her other house fixed up to live in. Yes, my mom has another property. I don’t know if you keep up on the family soap opera but my brother and his family used to live there but they moved out and now it’s vacant. My mom will probably be moving back in a few months and we’re all kind of dreading it. It’s been really nice having her next door.

Anyway, wicker! Right in my driveway! It’s like I can drive right into my living room!

wicker chillaxin'

It’s a nice spot for for relaxing and talking to the neighbors who might be afraid of the dogs. All the other outdoor patio seating areas I have are in my yard where the dogs run free and sometimes those dogs can be downright pesky, especially when they like to jump on you (Spreckles) and snarl and growl (Holly).


fairy bug

It’s also a nice spot for taking pictures. The fiberglass siding provides a nice soft-box effect for taking photos. Too bad it’s about eleven-hundred years old and not very photogenic itself. I don’t know exactly what it’s made of but there are these little fibers that are coming lose from it and the birds like to pull that off to make nests. I hope it’s not poisonous to them.

what is this stuff called? Holly

What is this stuff called anyway? I tried googling fiberglass siding and that wasn’t it at all. Maybe it’s no longer used. I don’t know.


Since I’m talking about my driveway patio, how about a picture of my crunched-up car? Isn’t that sad? I backed into someone in the bank parking lot. I could swear it’s more her fault than mine but I have no proof. We both backed into each other at the same time like so:

crash diagram

She was in a big giant SUV and didn’t see me. I don’t know why I didn’t see her. I was going really slow, just creeping out when I heard this big BOOM! I stopped, put my car in park and jumped out of the car. And while I’m there jumping out, she was still moving and about to hit me again. Why? I guess she just didn’t even know I was there. Of course I yelled and screamed and she stopped backing up just in the nick of time before she was about to run over my body that was thinking about jumping in between our two cars. I don’t know why I thought putting myself in the way was a good idea but I felt so helpless and of protective of my poor little car.

this is a very bad thing
(This is a very bad thing.)

I really wanted to hate the lady in the big SUV but she was so nice. She gave me all her insurance information and her phone numbers. She seemed genuinely concerned when I told her my husband was going to kill me when he saw the dent.

Poor Toby. I don’t know why he bought me this car. I did pay for a big chunk of it myself from freelance jobs but if it had been up to me I would have bought more of a clunker that could handle nicks and dings without feeling like I’ve damaged a collector’s item. It’s so sad. I’ve got dings on all sides. I look like I’m a drunk driving by Braille. Only two of them are my fault though. The rest is beach parking. Stupid tourists.

Anyway! I’ve got a call into my insurance agent and I think it should work out. Thankfully it’s only the bumper and not the frame. My dad says I could get an auto body shop to just punch it out for $100.

Next up! Easter Party!


I know, this is old news. I’m so sorry. I meant to type up a whole post about Easter because my new best friend across the street put so much time and effort into it. It really deserves a post all on it’s own. But it’s old news now so I’ll just wrap it in right here. Sorry Wendy!

We had a lot of fun. I have to say this neighborhood we live in is pretty great. If you want to see all the pictures, click here for flickr and click here for facebook. If you aren’t a friend, email me and I’ll friend you. I’m always accepting friend applications. Just kidding. Though it is pretty funny how we call everybody friends these days.

My uncle was giving a little Sunday School talk at meeting (church) a week ago and he told how an acquaintance of his kept emailing him asking if he’d be his friend on facebook. Well, my uncle has no use for facebook. He doesn’t have time for that kind of stuff. He has a big family, a pretty busy job etc etc… So finally after the fifth or sixth email from this guy, my uncle just got on the phone and dialed him up. Of course this friend wasn’t there so he left a message saying, Why don’t we get together and have lunch sometime and catch up like real friends?

You guessed it, the wanna-be friend never called back. But sure enough the emails requesting friendship kept coming. So pretty much the moral of my uncle’s story was, be careful who you associate with because often friends don’t really want to be your friend. They just want to keep track of you! I kind of smiled sheepishly through out this whole message.

"me and my friend Olivia"

Since we’re talking about friends, here’s some of Bug’s artwork of her and her friend Olivia. They’re best friends in preschool. I hear all about Olivia every day. I’m learning all about peer pressure already. Bug wants to wear everything Olivia has. Olivia has Twinkle Toe Sketchers, a layered skirt and little bow-thingys in her hair. So now Bug does too. High school, here we come.


I also liked this picture. It’s algae of course. Didn’t you know? We learned all about algae because I have my homepage set to Bing and that was that day’s picture. Everyday they put up a really cool photo with interesting links. I don’t love Microsoft products but I do have to say this is a pretty neat feature. Bethany turned me onto it.

Liquid Web Guy

This is the Liquid Web Guy. If you like them on twitter or something like that they send you one of these toys in the mail. It’s kinda cool. Of course Bug broke his arms off the day after he arrived but it’s a pretty neat toy if you don’t try to make him do gymnastics with his massive 24-hour-support arms. I’m still really happy with their web service and hey, a free toy!

What else do I have around here to share?

Apparently Spreckles won a bake sale. That’s newworthy. Though my film-making skills are not.

evil smurf

My silly kid.


Lastly (or near the last…I think I have two more things after this) we ran a race this weekend! And this is the only picture I have to show for it that I took with my non-smart phone. I left the big camera at home because I didn’t want it banging against my hip while I ran and my small water-proof point-and-shoot was dead which it is a lot these days since I’ve misplaced the charger. This is what happens when you get new bigger better camera. The old one gets neglected.

Anyway the race was a bit of a bust because I didn’t read the instructions carefully and I missed it! It was at 7:15 in the morning and I was parking about that time. The whole place was a crowded and I had no hope of getting to the starting line on time. By the time I got to registration, it was well on it’s way and I was lost. I called my friend Calee, who was also running the race, and she said I could just come with her on the 9:30 walking 5K instead. That sounded good to me since I haven’t really been working out much lately and I was not really ready to run a race anyway. I had Bug with me. She was going to stay with her dad during the race but things got complicated and she ended up coming with me instead.

Long story short, it was a good twist of events because the race turned out to be a massive kid zone with five or six bounce houses, a petting zoo, trampolines, live music and face painting!!! Wooo to the hoooo! But the best part is that when Bug got her face painted and the lady did kind of a bad job. How can that be good you think? Well…Bug wanted a butterfly that took over her whole face (We might be a bit spoiled.) and the lady did a pathetic pink “x’ between her eyes. It was so sad. I could see Bug’s disappointment when she looked into the mirror so I politely asked if I could take a hand at painting. It was a bit forward of me to ask and I’m so happy that the face painter didn’t take it personally. But I’ve been dying to be a face painter since forever and I knew I could do a better job. So I did!

It didn’t turn out that great but I know if I practice more I could do a lot better. I’m really serious about becoming a face painter. Just wait and see!

I think that’s my last picture. But I do want to share that we are going to Disneyland on Thursday and if anybody has any hints/tips for us I’d love to hear them. I realize not many people will make it this far down in the post but if you did, please share! This will be Bug’s first time to Disneyland outside of that time I took her when she was one. Remember this movie?

We are all so so so very excited. The water ball probably won’t blow her mind like last time but the princesses will. Unfortunately, she’s still a midget in the height department and not 42-inches tall yet so a lot of the rides will still be off limits but I think we’ll manage.

moppin' usa

And lastly! (for reals this time) I’ve got a mop post up on my review site. This one is a good one. I really really like this product. If you’re the mopping type, you might too! Especially since you can win $100 and a free mop if you’re lucky!


  • Clownfish

    Hey B,

    You know that I’m pumped for you two because I (we) love Disneyland. Sadly our passes expire on my birthday next Sunday, sigh. I’ve got a couple ideas you might want to try while you are there. I’ll give you a call maybe this afternoon.
    – Clownfish

  • Elda

    I read the WHOLE thing… I get a prize for that, right? I kid.

    Looks like y’all have been having tons of fun and making the most of everything. Unfortunately I don’t have any advice for Disneyland and having been there several times I kinda dislike it. I would say to just make it to the places you REALLY wanna see and enjoy those areas instead of trying to hit up the entire park.

    Have fun and take lots of pictures to share with us!

  • Jaynette

    I was afraid the kids would get lost. So I dressed them in matching shirts and clipped a whistle to them so they could get our attention if they strayed. They did not.

  • Susan:)

    I love Disneyland! Best advice, go as early as possible. You can see and do a lot if you get there first thing, and you won’t have to contend with crowds and heat.

    Also, what someone else said, be sure to do a little advance planning and make sure you hit the things you most want to see first. Grab a map and a times guide at the entrance and just make a quick little plan for what you want to do most. Head to Fantasyland first, it will get crowded the fastest. Do all the Fantasyland rides you want to do first thing, and then you can hit other things a bit more leisurely.

    My favorite spot to relax: New Orleans Square at the French Market. Outdoor seats, listening to the jazz music of the Royal St Bachelors and sipping on a sweet Mint Julep!

  • nikkapotamus

    I just had to say a quick hello and let you know that my little one year old guy is totally smitten with Baby Bug saying wow. I think I played it 6 times in a row and he giggled every single time.
    I’ve never been to Disney, so have a great time!

  • BeachMama

    What a fun catch up post. I still say heat up that bumper and it will pop right out, that happened to us a couple of times (no I wasn’t driving, no I wasn’t in the car) but Hubby managed to pop it out and no one was the wiser.

    We loved Disneyland!!! J did not want to go on any of the little kiddie rides and thankfully Apple was small enough to not be sad that she didn’t go on any rides. I walked the park with her in the stroller while Hubby took J on the StarWars, Indiana Jones and toy story rides, then onto the other side with the Carosel and crazier rides. Have lots of fun, look forward to the pics.

  • Deeleea

    My Disneyland advice is plan out what you want to do, go early, and do the thing that’s farthest from the entrance first, then you get the long walk out of the way before small people get tired and cranky… that tired and cranky walk from the back of the park to the car at the end of the day is a BUST… so if you’re whole day is making your way back to the car via amazing rides it tends to have a sweeter finish!

  • Lety

    Having a 5 year old who loves the princesses, i highly suggest making it to the back by it’s a small world and get in line to see the princesses. They usually have THREE to see at the same time. You get to take pictures and they interact very well with the kids. My daughter loves it there and it’s always the first place we go. Also she loves It’s a small world, and the earlier you go he shorter the line.

    Behind the castle is a cute girly princessy store, and they usually have a story time with a princess…it’s early i believe about 10am. Check the map for times.

    The last time we went, my daughter absolutly LOVESDthe 3D show Captain EO!

    The buzz lightyear ride was a hit with my daughter.

    I also make sure to take a few snacks and frozen waters, snacks can get expensive. But we do love our churros, and caramel candy apples from Disneyland.

    Have a great time, and can’t wait to see pictures.

  • Yara

    Hey, we’ll be at Disneyland Thursday, too. If you see us, say hi : )

    Tips: Lorelei is terrified of most rides in fantasyland. Snow White, Mr Toad, Pinnochio… too scary. If Bug is sensitive, you may wanna skip these.

  • Melissa

    Well, I made it all the way to the bottom…and enjoyed the entire thing! Unfortunately, I’ve never been to Disneyland so I have nothing to recommend but I will wish you a great day. The video of Baby Bug is too cute!

  • Ninabi

    I loved your busy, full post- it so sums up life- a little of everything, happy, good, not so good, frustrating, fun.

    I love Disneyland- I enjoyed taking my children there when they were six and eight. I can advise this- if you are trying to get somewhere quickly and Disneyland is crowded, pick Bug up and cup your hand under her mouth like she’s going to throw up. You will part crowds like Moses parting the Red Sea- nobody wants to be barfed on while on vacation- we found this out the hard way after too many treats in child number two- but used it to our advantage for the rest of our stay.

    Have fun! Can’t wait to see all the pictures. I miss those sweet days when my kids were small.

  • Jeanie

    Bummer about the dent.

    Bug is hilarious in the movie at Disney. I have never heard a small child say Wow so many times in a row. Awesome.

    Have fun!

  • bethany actually

    Hahahaha, I clicked over to read the Disneyland post, and guess who left the first comment on that post FOUR YEARS ago? I wasn’t even ‘bethany actually’ then, I was just Bethany!

  • Jody

    The siding on your carport is a fiberglass corrugated panel – they still sell it but it’s usually used on roofs. Try Home Depot or Lowe’s.

  • Chris in NY

    Re Facebook- If your uncle is getting emails about friending on FB, then it could likely be an automated thing that your uncle’s friend has no control over. Once a friend “checked” to see if friends listed in her address book were on FB- I now get monthly or so emails at work that she wants to be friends (when we already are on FB together with my home email). So it actually may not be your uncle’s friend’s fault. YMMV

  • Jaynette

    I went to DisneyLand all by myself one time. I had a wonderful time. Now my teenagers inform me they are too old for the Happiest Place on Earth!
    Very sad face.

  • gingermog

    Big squishy hugs. Your first photos made me homesick for the day we spent at the beach together last year. Wow, (no pun intended) so excited on your behalf your going to Disney Land. I went to the Euro one last year and loved all the set design of the rides. Isn’t it unfair that Julian has been to DisnseyWorld in Florida twice (!) (without me).

  • Cc

    I remember all the “wows” we got on Smallworld. I’m sure that will be one of her favorites. Look for all the Disney characters as you pass through. Tinkerbell and Peter Pan fly over head, Alladin, Jasmine, Cinderella, Jaques, Ariel, Lilo, etc. I think there are 27 in all.

    If you plan o. Seeing the princesses be prepared to be in line for a long time.

    When you get hungry the best lunch is a turkey leg off of one of the carts. The Mexican restaurant in Frontierland is reall yummy too.

    Avoid the bathrooms at the very front as soon as you enter the park and the ones by the restaurant in Frontierland. They are small and crowded.

    The best place for lockers in the park is just off Main Street down from the Gobson Ice Cream Parlor. This is also a good place to ge ice cream when they are open. It’s way less crowded. The other place with good lockers is between the two parks.

    Avoid the Haunted Mansion, Pirates, Mr. Toad, and Snow White. They may induce nightmares.

    Make sure you hit Tarzan’s Tree House. It’s worth it

    If you get cold the Winnie the Pooh ride waaaaaaay over behind Splash Mointain moves quickly and is very warm. The only scary part is the Heffalumps. Well, they aren’t scary. It’s just bright, they spin, and it plays that weird song.

    I can’t wait to hear all about it!

  • Madge

    Bethany – guess who was the second commenter on the old post??? *waving hand in air* I wasn’t even Madge then, bahahaha.

    Sheesh Brenda, I decide to stop being a night owl and go to bed early every night and now I feel like I missed out on a lot of reading. I’ll have to catch up with you soon. Oh, if you’re free next Friday, we’re celebrating Sprite’s bday.

  • Kuky

    Wow I remember showing Alan that Disneyland post. Was I even commenting then or just lurking? I cannot even remember.

    And it amazes me that someone can not see your bright car. I say this because I have a bright orange car and I’ve had some near misses and every time wonder, how does one not see my gigantic orange car?!