Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Want free money? Send my husband a scam email

Before I share this awesome story with you, can I ask you a favor?  Will you vote for me in Week 5 of Blogger Idol?  (Voting for Week 5 is closed.  Thanks for all your support!)  No gimmicks, no videos, no bribes...but please vote.  I can't do it without you!  This week was "Idol Gives Back Week," and we had to feature some of our favorite blogs.  See what I have to say about Momma Bird, Mom Next Door, I Need a Playdate, Absolutely Narcissism, and My Own Private Idaho.  There were SO many more of you that I would like to have featured;  I hope to share more Bloggy BFF love on my blog in the future!

Alright, back to how to get free money from my husband:

You know those emails that most people delete without even reading the entire subject line? The ones titled “Confirmation Letter from Irish Lottery Board” and “Concerning My Proposed Investment Inquiry in your Country?” My husband likes them. Enjoys them even.

A couple months ago, he came to me with three pages of computer paper in his hand. “I got the funniest email today, and I printed it out for you,” he said and handed me the document. “URGENT RESPONSE NEEDED” the subject line said.

“This is a scam,” I told him, handing the paper back.

“I know, but it's hilarious!” He proceeded to read me the ENTIRE email stopping to highlight his favorite parts of the absurd “business” proposition presented in broken English. “The funniest thing,” he said after he finished, “is that this guy is claiming to be the Director of the FBI, but he has a yahoo email address. Like it's just sooo hard for the Director of the FBI to get a dot gov email address.”

Then, we were in the car the other day, and Mr. Spaghetti said, “You know those scam emails I like so much?”

“Yeah...” I said reluctantly.

“I got one from a Mr. Zellerman today. He found a suitcase full of money and wants to share it with me,” he said like he was talking about an old buddy. “He said he didn't actually open it, but that he is guessing by the weight of it that it contains three or four million dollars.”

“I wish I knew how much three or four million dollars weighed,” I said.

“He signed it 'The Legal Diplomatic of Your Package Box,'" he laughed. “I think I should start using that as my title from now on.”

“I'll get you business cards,” I answered.

“You know,” he said after a minute, “I almost sort of feel for those guys. They apparently have no marketable job skills, so they have to resort to using the English language poorly to swindle people out of money.”

“Well, I feel better knowing that you're smart enough not to fall for a scam like that, just that you might send them money as an act of charity.”

He pulled a jump drive out of his pocket and handed it to me with a sinister look on his face. “Here follow my instructions,” he said.

“Is it a scam email? Are you gonna make me read it?” I whined.

“No!” he said, “I just want to listen to some music...”

My husband wanted me to add this disclaimer about his love of spam letters: Nigerian scam emails are like spy novels written for ten year-olds. They’re foreign and little bit exciting and they’re harmless so long as you recognize that they aren’t real.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Mommy fail #126: Losing your car seat

The family and I went out of town this weekend so my husband could take a much needed fishing break and I could visit some friends.

My husband left for the lake early Saturday morning while the baby and I were still asleep. Once we got up and moving, we decided we'd go out to breakfast with the friends we were staying with. As soon as we got out the door, I realized that my car was not there. Which meant my car seat was also not there.

Desperate not to be stranded, the wheels in my head started turning. First I called my husband, just to be sure he hadn't taken the seat out and left it somewhere. He didn't answer. He was fishing.

Then I wracked my brain trying to figure out if I might know anyone in town with a car seat. After an hour and several phone calls, we finally located a spare seat.

I know what you're thinking: That doesn't sound too bad, and it actually sounds more like a “Daddy fail” than a “Mommy fail.” And you're right, if only that had been the end.

A couple hours later, I went to see the bathroom remodel another friend was working on. The woman whose husband was fishing with my husband also happened to be there. I started telling them what had happened with the car seat.

I didn't get very far before the woman said, “I'm not sure if I should tell you this, but your husband didn't take your car fishing. It's parked in front of my house; they took our SUV.”

That meant the car seat had been only a couple blocks from where we were staying the entire time.

When my husband came home, I told him about the fiasco. “Didn't you hear what I said last night?" he said.  "I told you that I was leaving the spare key in your purse and the car parked at the house.”

With no one left to blame, I had to accept my own short-comings: faulty memory, selective hearing, and an excellent ability to create a crisis where none exists.

How about you?  How was your weekend?

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

I've got an offer you can't refuse

And, yes, it has to do with voting for me for Blogger Idol...

Let's get down to business.  Here are the terms:  I have a hilariously cute video of Little Spaghetti from about six months ago.  It is so cute that whenever I'm having a bad day, I watch it and can't help but smile.  So, I'm going to share said video with you on the one condition that if you - while watching the video - smile even just a little bit, you have to go vote for me this week.   Voting for this week has ended, so the video is just yours to enjoy!  Thanks for all your support.

This week's topic was: What writing means to you.  One of the judge's comments was kind of mean (hence why I had to bust out the video and cheer myself up). So even though she didn't like it, I hope you do!  Read it hereVote here (pick Mama Spaghetti).   Thank you a thousand times!

Also, my post this week features the photography of the amazingly talented Adriana Iris at La Dulce Vida.  Her words and photos inspire me, so I was thrilled when she agreed to let me use some of her pictures for my post.  I think she has a very unique way of capturing life's beauty.

If you vote, let me know so I can thank you or give you a shout out on Twitter (leave your Twitter handle, just in case)!

Nevada, why are you so vain?

Here's a little known fact about my great state: Nevada ranks fourth in the nation for percentage of people with vanity license plates.

I suppose that's not such a bad top ten list to be on.  Better than top ten states for unemployment...or home foreclosures...or dropout rates.

Wait? What's that?  Nevada *is* on all those lists?  Well...those statistics aren't nearly as entertaining in a blog post as vanity license plates.

Indeed, I've found that Nevadans have a lot to say on their license plates.  Sometimes they're clever.  Other times they just confuse me.  Here are a few of the best ones I've seen recently.

Well, I suppose it is.  You couldn't think of anywhere better to spend your money than on a special license plate admitting your car's a piece of junk?

Roses are red?  Thank you, Captain Obvious!  Someone is very serious about the color red here.

I have no idea what this is supposed to say.  (Any guesses?).  At first I thought it said "Carpe diem," except that it actually looks more like "crap a diem," which I'm pretty sure would mean "crap a day."  Maybe I'll use that to greet people I don't like from now on.

Fate happens.  Isn't that kind of what "fate" implies?  It's hard to be so profound when you're....not.

 You took the words right out of my mouth.  It really is considerate of you to give others something to say about your driving.

What about you?  Do you have any favorite vanity license plates?

Also, I greatly appreciate your concern about my safety.  Just know, I don't take pictures while traffic's moving.  Even if it means missing a really great license plate.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Mommy Fail #118: Teaching a kid how to pee

I know my baby is only sixteen months old, but here's the thing: I'm sick of diapers.  Shocking, I know.

So, I had a brilliant idea.  I thought, "Let's start potty training!"  I'm not going to lie to you because you're good people...potty training at this age is more about training me not to be lazy to be attentive than it is about Little Spaghetti actually understanding the concept of pottying.

I did a little reading about potty training before I started, but all I really learned is that I am not going to refer to my child's urine as "te-te."  People actually say that?  Yes, apparently, they do.

"Pee" or "pee pee" is what we will say in my house, even if my high school English teacher thinks that word is crass.

Anyway, we started the potty training.  He's actually doing very well.  He sits on the little potty that goes on the big potty (because who wants to clean out those little plastic potties?), he makes a "shhhhh" sound, and then - about 75% of the time - he pees.  After lots of hollering and hugging about how awesome he is (I do the hollering, not him), he grabs a little piece of toilet paper, wipes himself, and pushes it into the potty.  Finally, he gets up, flushes the potty, and claps.

I've been calling it success, even though the whole charade hinges on me bringing him to sit on the potty approximately every twelve minutes which effectively removes my ability to do anything else in life.

But then, tonight, my dad called.

"Mom was telling me about how the baby goes potty," he said.

"Yeah?" I responded, not being able to figure out why he sounded so weird about it.

"You're ruining him! He's going to get beat up when he goes to school! Boys don't wipe for crying out loud!"

So there you have it...that's what you get for letting a woman teach a boy how to pee.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Step away from the computer and (probably) no one will get hurt

It's no secret that I often blog instead of doing other more responsible things like cooking and cleaning.  In fact, if finding excuses not to do housework were a sport, I'd be the MVP for sure.  But, I'm also a big enough person to admit when I have a problem.

Like when I find myself wishing the dog could learn to feed herself so she didn't have to interrupt my twittering.  Or when I convince myself that Little Spaghetti would be fine without a bath for just one more day because I haven't been on pinterest in hours.  Or when I start thinking it's ok to bribe my toddler with chocolate chips so I can just get fifteen more minutes to stalk comment on blogs in peace.

So, this weekend, I'm taking a cue from Little Spaghetti (and sharing the video with you, too, in case the cuteness inspires you to do the same).

I'm going to stop and smell the roses.  I'm going to unplug.

I blog for me, but I live for him.  If I'm not careful, one day I'm going to turn around and he'll be giving roses to a girl all right, but that girl won't be me.  (And he'll be begging me for the money to buy those roses...the nerve!)

So savor the summer this weekend, friends.  I'll catch you all next week!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Vote...or my baby will get you with his scary face!

Alright folks, one more plea to get in your vote for Blogger Idol (ends Thursday night at midnight CST).  Do it only takes like three seconds.  Go here, click the little bubble next to "Roni and Mama Spaghetti", then click vote.  If you don't, I'm going to send my kid after you making his scariest face.  Scary....see...

Also, major props to my awesome partner for the week, Roni, at Mommy in Law. I thought our interview was pretty darn entertaining.

And I want to thank MJ at A Girl Named Michael for nominating me for a Versatile Blogger Award. She is a great bloggy friend, and I'm glad to have met her recently!  So, here's my seven facts and some blogs  I recommend checking out.

Finally, I convinced my husband to let me go to BlogHer in San Diego coming up August 5-6.  I am SO incredibly excited and also SO incredibly freaking out. But, mostly, I'm wondering if any of my friends out there in Blogland are also going.  I'm hoping to be able to meet some great new people, but also to put some faces to some names of "old" friends.  If you're going, let me know!

And finally (for real this time), I get to meet Ree Drummond, the Pioneer Woman during pathfinder day.  I hope I don't pass out.  Or throw up on her. She's pretty much the reason I started blogging, so I'm going to try my hardest not to embarrass myself. Anyone got a good joke I can tell her or something to make her think I'm awesome?

Well, at least you didn't marry me for money.

We were sitting at the dinner table the other night, when my husband looked over at me sweetly, took my hand in his, and said:

"I've been doing a lot of reading lately, and I'm beginning to think that I didn't really marry you for any of the reasons I thought I did."

Me: "Oh really?  Please tell me more."

Husband: "Well, I read this interesting article about people who had been in accidents that damaged the parts of their brain that control emotions.  They end up spending so much time and energy trying to reason things out that it causes them to not be able to make any decisions about anything."

Me: "That is interesting...but what does it have to do with why you married me?"

Husband: "When I married you, I had all these logical reasons, but it turns out that logic relies pretty heavily on emotions, so I think I married you just as much for emotion as for reason."

Me: "So what you're saying is that you didn't think you married me for love, but it turns out that you did?"

Husband: "Well, it doesn't sound very nice when you put it like that.  It's just that consciously, I thought I was making a choice for certain reasons that made sense, but I think my subconscious mind knew how I really felt about you and made sure I made the right choice in marrying you."

Me: "So what you're saying is that it took your subconscious mind to talk you into marrying me?"

Husband: "Oh, never mind!  I really married you because I had a huge crush on you in high school, and I just never could get over it."

At least there was ONE good reason.  I'm kidding...the truth is, even though I like to give him a hard time, I love him even more when he says things like that.  That's the nerdy, cerebral, wonderful man I married, and I wouldn't trade him for the world.

P.S.  Voting is now open for Blogger Idol Week 3; this week is an interview with one of the other contestants.  I got paired with the fabulous Mommy in Law. Vote Roni and Mama Spaghetti! Click here to vote.

Photo by Chris Doerr

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Did that really just come out of my mouth?

As my baby gets older, I find myself talking more.  Sure, I talked to him when he was little, but it wasn't the constant play-by-play of my internal dialogue that seems to come out of my mouth these days.  Perhaps the lack of being around other human beings who can say more than just a couple words in English is finally getting to me.

Whatever the cause, I say some pretty entertaining things.  Here's a few of my favorites:

1. "There's really no reason we *need* all of these clothes.  They just have to be washed."
2. "So THAT'S what Desitin tastes like."
3. "Look! Look at the horse going pee pee!  He's going pee pee just like you'll do someday.  Pee pee in the river, which is basically just like the potty."
4. " I'd much rather you try to eat a binder clip than a marble.  It's a lot harder to swallow a binder clip."
5. "On Saturday, the caterpillar ate through one piece of chocolate cake, one ice cream cone, one pickle, one slice of Swiss cheese, one slice of salami, one lollipop, one piece of cherry pie, one sausage, one cupcake, and one slice of watermelon.  Boy, that sounds like mommy on a Saturday.  I wonder if he's a boredom eater, too?"

What about you?  Do you say things that might make loved ones worry about you if they were around to hear them?

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

If my kid does a cute dance, will you vote for me on Blogger Idol?

Well, you're in luck!  Because today, I just so happen to have a video of Little Spaghetti...dancing.  To the Blogger Idol theme song, no less.

This is the song that plays in the background of Blogger Idol every video (i.e. the elimination videos).  It makes me break into a cold sweat whenever I hear it.  My little guy, though?  No sweating.  Apparently this song inspires him to do some of his best dancing.  And shouting.

This week's assignment was "If you could be the opposite sex for a day..."  Here's what I had to say about it.

So please, won't you vote for me now?  Otherwise, he'll have to learn to cry when this song comes on instead of dancing.  And nobody wants that. [Note: Scroll to the end of the post to vote; voting ends Thursday at 11:59 CST]

And, yes, sometimes I do put clothes on my baby. Though, more often than not, they're on the couch like they are in this video...

Want to know more about Blogger Idol?   Here's what I had to say about my debut last week ("What having ants in your pants can tell you about yourself"), and here's the audition that got me selected for the top 12.

If it were up to me, your kid would never need another shot

If I ran the world, things would be a little bit different 'round these parts.  Specifically:

*Immunizations would come in the form of delicious, watermelon-flavored suckers instead of sharp pointy needles.  And I'd never have to pull another bloody, Donald Duck-covered Band-Aid off my poor, sweet baby's thighs again.

*Screw three day weekends; I'd just reverse the whole system.  5 days of weekend, 2 days of work week.

*There would be fairies.  Lots of them.  The bedtime fairy would bathe kids, brush their teeth, and put them to sleep.  The laundry fairy would wash, dry, fold, repeat.  The foot rub fairy would...well, that one's pretty self explanatory.

*The combination of poop and a diaper would cause a magical chemical reaction that would turn the whole darn mess into solid gold.  The downside is that my kid's pants would weigh a ton several times a day.  The upside is that I'd never try to pawn off changing him on anyone else ever again.

*I'd find a way to bottle the joy in my baby's smiles and laughs, and the result would be like the fountain of youth.  That way being a mother could keep me young instead of giving me gray hairs, an achy back, and a faulty memory.

What about you?  What would the world look like if you were in charge?

Monday, July 4, 2011

I hope you celebrated the Fourth of July like my Dad

This weekend was a long one - and not just because it was three days.  Between the heat, family in town, and a to-do list that was (who am I kidding...still is) a mile long, I've had no time for anything fun (by which I mean blogging).

So, I thought I'd share a little story, instead, to wish you all a Happy 4th of July:

My dad to the bartender at dinner: "So, you've got two sizes for beer, huh?"

Bartender: "Yeah, a 16 oz. and a 22 oz."

My Dad: "I'll take one of each."

Bartender, looking skeptical: "One of each? Alright..."

My Dad: "Yeah, my left arm's weaker than my right one, and I don't want it to get tired while I'm double-fisting."

Oh, Dad.   You know how to party.  Actually, he was ordering one for my mom, but it was funnier not to let the bartender know that.

Anyway, I hope you had a two-beers-at-once kind of holiday weekend!

And now, because a blog post lacking quality can always be made up for with cute pictures, I leave you with these:

 My kid loves shoes.  He picks out his shoes every morning, and if I don't put them on, he follows me around whining until I do.  Lately, he picks out his snow boots.  Pretty much every day.  And he's so proud of himself!

This was taken late this evening.  He looks how I feel.  Mom, can this weekend be over yet? 

Friday, July 1, 2011

PSA: In case of fire, hide under a frying pan

Why are some nursery rhymes so creepy? And why haven't we figured out how creepy they are and ditched them for pete's sake!

Tonight Little Spaghetti and I were reading through a set of little board books he has, and I came across this gem.
 Oh lady bugs! Cute!

 Ah! I think I remember this poem. Though...I don't think I know any more than the first two lines...

What?!? That's very unexpected.  And horrifying!

 Who is the narrator of this story?  And why doesn't he or she have a soul?  This is just cruel..
Are you kidding me? Under the frying pan? This is the worst ending ever.

That is quite possibly the saddest lady but I have ever seen. 

Seriously...I could have gone the rest of my life without knowing that story.

And don't even get me started on the oppressive, anti-feminist undertones of this seemingly harmless story.*  I mean, really, just because she wasn't at home, in her kitchen, all the sudden it's her fault that her children have perished in a terrible fire?

*(That's sarcastic...I don't really think this book is trying to brainwash our kids. And I really don't want to start a feminist debate of some kind...)