A $6.00 lesson.

My daughter and I have a bi-weekly tradition of skating which is quickly providing me with an enormous amount of aches and pains.  I overlook them, because…well…I am getting a chance to skate with my kid and you can’t replace memories like that.  Still, I hurt.  Today, I took a tumble for the ages, landing on my wrist and elbow.  I’m not going to get into details or even complain but let’s just say, it hurts to type.  I simply must blog though.  I am devoted, if anything. 

When you are 21 and fall to the ice, you get back up and keep skating.  When you are 41 and fall on your wrist and elbow, the following things go through your head.

1. What the hell am I doing on ice skates at age 41?

2. Why does it feel like a truck just ran over my arm?

3. If I tell my seven year-old we have to stop skating, will she cry?

4. Do I smell pizza and beer?  That would be awesome right about now.

After skating, we went out for frozen yogurt at a place called Koala Berry.  Maybe you have a Koala Berry where you live, or a place similar.  You choose from 15 or so amazing flavors, then dump about 100 ounces of toppings at .45 cents an ounce on top of it, then eat like you’ve never had a sundae before.  I went for the birthday cake flavor with hot fudge and peanuts and crushed kit kat’s.  A simple, yet delicate blend of sugar, sugar and sugar.  Yum.

My daughter picked a flavor called root beer float.  She added a variety of candy, hot fudge, marshmallows and Sour Patch Kids.  Gummy bears with a sour kick from hell.  I first had Sour Patch Kids while on a movie date in high school.  They were so incredible, I quickly ate two bags and forgot who I was out with.  On ice cream though?  I asked my daughter if she was certain she wanted to add them to her already (rather disgusting) ice cream.  She nodded in the affirmative.  I swear I saw one of the sour patch kids cringe as she sprinkled them on top.

We let our kids top their sundaes because they need to learn about failure on their own.  We need to let them do it, because without the experience of Sour Patch Kids, Root Beer Float and Hot Fudge (and marshmallows and kit kats and M and M’s), they can’t learn for themselves that some things look better than they taste. 

After three bites of her $6.00 sundae, my daughter was done.  Chalk it up to experience, I guess.  Maybe I’m a sucker for her deep blue eyes.  Maybe I just can’t tell her no.  One thing we both realized today–a Root Beer Float flavored frozen yogurt with the toppings mentioned above is something you try once in your life and then never again.  Like sticking your finger in a light socket or zipping up a little too fast, all it takes is one time to realize you never need to do that again to be happy!

Sadly, I did notice a gummy worm and crushed candy cane compartment close to the Sour Patch Kids.  With 14 other flavors of frozen yogurt left to try plus a ton of other toppings, something tells me we are in for a great deal of $6.00 lessons in the near future.

This is why we parent.  🙂


And the forests will echo with laughter.

There’s no better sound than the laughter of a child. 

A few months ago, my kids were spending the weekend with me and we were sitting around the Princess card table eating pizza.  My daughter looked at me and asked if I would go to the bedroom and get her the remote control car.

I asked her why.  She wouldn’t answer.  She looked at my 2 yr old son and he looked back at her.  Nothing.  They were both stone-faced.

“Please just go get the car, daddy.”

I got up and walked to the bedroom and reached down to pick it up.

The car moved before I could grab it.  I tried again.  Same thing.

At the table, my kids were laughing hysterically.  Their father had been the victim of a well-thought out practical joke.  I looked over and saw the control, held by my daughter, under the table.

This is why we live.  This is why we parent–for moments like this that you simply cannot script. 

I wasn’t going to blog tonight, but I ran across that car while prepping my house for their arrival tomorrow.  Lately, I’ve been packing away toys my kids no longer play with.  This little 5 dollar piece of plastic isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.

Here’s to the laughter of children and what I hope is a lifetime of well-coordinated practical jokes between the three of us.

Be well.

In my thoughts I have seen rings of smoke through the trees.


Ever have a day when you just want to make a silly face and laugh at the world? Sometimes a funny face and a good giggle is the best medicine.

I’ve read a lot of wonderful posts today and I drank 2 mugs of black tea. This alone has changed my life for the better. I feel more positive and I am pumped with antioxidants. Here is one example of a super post I came across on my reader today.

I’m going to keep this post short and sweet. I want to thank the 67 people who follow my blog. It means a lot that you stop by and read. I’d love to hear from you! Always feel free to stop by and give me a shout.

It’s a cold wintry day today–I’m about to go outside and walk in the snow. It doesn’t get much better than that! What do you like to do on winter days like today?

Be well.

Listen to the rhythm of the falling rain.

There is nothing better than sitting back on a cold, wintry day and listening to Big Band music.  I am an avid listener and have always loved its calming effect.  That was a great era of music.  I often close my eyes and just think back to that time and what it must have been like to live through it.  Families struggled economically, they were torn apart by war and everybody had to do their part to conserve, build and defend.  

Through it all, they managed to live simple lives with simple pleasures.  Love meant something back then and so did communication.  It’s all they had really.  People had letters, telegrams and their voice.  Sometimes I wonder if it was better back then, despite the war and working certain jobs out of necessity–not because you loved your work.  

I have an ID card on my desk at work which belonged to my Great-grandfather when he worked at the docks in Toledo, Ohio.  Although I never knew him, I can bet the farm he hated that job but was eternally grateful that he had one for his family.  It was a difficult time back then.  The Depression hit families hard.  I remember listening to stories my Grandfather told about receiving free food and other handouts–and recalling how low he felt taking them.  I keep that ID card on my desk to remind me that we don’t always get to do what we want in life–especially in terms of a job.  Sometimes, circumstances force us to change gears and call an audible.  I look at the ID card every day at work and remember the sacrifices my ancestors made for their family.  It motivates me to try harder for mine.

If you haven’t given Big Band music a try, please do.  It’s wonderful.  I listen to my XM radio (40’s on 4) all day long at work.  I get a kick out of it when older customers stop in and can’t believe a young sprout like me listens to such music.  That’s funny to me, because I’m 41 and hardly a sprout anymore.  And, you can be any age and appreciate great music.  

Music makes us remember, appreciate, laugh and cry.  It makes our minds wander and dream.  And to that, I say, Amen.

be well.

An Interview with LOL.

Recently, I had the pleasure of sitting down with LOL and conducting an interview.  The following is a transcript of our talk.  Enjoy!

Irish: Welcome, LOL!  It’s sure great to have this chance to finally meet you.


IR: You have become such a large part of the fabric of the Internet.  How does that make you feel?

LOL: Well, at first I was excited, because it’s tough for abbreviations to become famous.  My cousin, “as-if”, tried to make it big, but some jerk programmer took “AI” (Artificial intelligence).  So he was screwed.  Now though, I just kind of take it in stride. lol.

IR: I have to be honest.  I go to great lengths to avoid using you in any situation.  I rarely ever lol, and I think most people overuse you.

LOL: lol.  See what I did just then?  I didn’t think your comment was funny at all, but I still lol’d.  That’s why I love me.  People have no idea if I am being sincere.  I’m mysterious that way.

IR: There is a rumor out there that you and ROFL truly hate each other. 

LOL: First of all, if you are on the damn floor rolling around and laughing, you better be having sex or tripping on some kind of mushroom.  Nobody rolls on the floor laughing.  ROFL is a phony.  Don’t even get me started on ROFLMAO.  That phrase just plain pisses me off. 

IR: I have to agree with you on that one.  So what do you do at family reunions?  I mean, you are bound to run into ROFL and ROFLMAO at some point.  Maybe at the buffet or during the family picture? 

LOL: lol. ROFL isn’t invited to our reunions anymore.  At the last one he pulled a prank on my uncle LMAO and it got pretty nasty.  ROFLMAO isn’t related to me.  That is an an abbreviation invented by people from the south who are still pissed they finished in second place during the Civil War.  I bet you didn’t know that.

IR: I honestly had no idea!  How interesting!  Are you into American History at all?  It sure sounds like it.

LOL: I hear that Grant LOL’d when Lee thought he could take Gettysburg.  I also heard that Washington LOL’d when his wife Martha thought one of the Minutemen had a thing for her. 

IR: I have to say, you are more intelligent than I ever thought you would be!  Are there any other acronyms or abbreviations that you think will make a splash in 2013 and beyond?


IR: ???

LOL: Stupid People Interviewing Things That Aren’t Alive.

IR: Clever.  Is it true that lol is a slight laugh and LOL means I am just busting a gut?

LOL: Yes.  If you just lol, it means that you found it mildly funny. A lot of people don’t know that and it pisses me off.  LOL means you almost peed yourself. 

IR: There needs to be a public service message about that, I think.

LOL: Yes, Irish…we need to get the word out to all the school kids in America on the proper use of lol.  lol.  Maybe after that we can teach them how to write a sentence or do a math problem.  That would be cool, don’t you think?  lol.

IR: You are just dripping with sarcasm tonight.  One last thing.  I hear that you and IDK are dating.  Any truth to that rumor?

LOL: Idk.

IR: Yes.

LOL: Right.  I said, Idk.

IR: I know, I asked if you were dating.


IR: You suck.


That’s not a panini. It’s an English Muffin with ham in it.

I woke up this morning a bit disappointed in my last post, which is now erased for lack of decent content. When I get on a roll, I often forget the “quality vs quantity” thing. At any rate, if you did take time to read that post last night, I appreciate it.

Here are some things floating around in my head today. Feel free to drop me a comment or two and chime in. I love hearing different perspectives.

1. The NRA needs to shut the hell up. Seriously. Ok, I get it. You like guns and our rights. Thank you. Now shut up. Have your conventions and hoot and holla all you want. This is not the appropriate time to be chirping your rhetoric on the news and Internet. Just shut up. My that felt good.

2. PS: People who cite the Bill of Rights for anything need a good enema and a dose of reality.

3. I have no earthly clue why I just went postal on the NRA.

4. I miss the word “postal”. I think that was an 80’s word. I miss the word “shazam” too. I try to creep that word into conversations, hoping it will catch on and go viral, but no luck.

5. Speaking of postal, the US Postal Service is raising prices again and whining because they aren’t making any money. Here’s an idea. Shut up. Fund it better, cancel Saturday mail and encourage people who work there to act human and smile once in awhile. When I am paying $45.98 for a 2 oz. package going three counties over, I at least want Joe behind the counter to smile and say thank you. It lessens the blow. And no…I don’t want stamps today.

6. I think it’s important to stay as positive as you can. (laughing).

If you have something you’d like to get off your chest, list it below. Let’s hear from you. My goal is to build this blog into a cultural phenomenon. Ok, not really. But if you join in, it will make me happy. I hope each of you has an amazing day.


It’s What Big Sisters Do.


Your little brother was too scared to walk the wall by himself yesterday.

You grabbed his hand and away you both went.

At the moment of this picture, he was giggling loudly.

You yelled, “This is what big sisters do.”

It was as if God took the picture, at this precise moment, for me.

I don’t know where either of you will be 20 years from now.

Or if I will be around.

I hope you both look at this picture every day for the rest of your lives.

And never forget.  Because I never will.  Ever.