Posts Tagged 'humor'

Help Thy Neighbor

Occasionally, there is such a thing as being too helpful.

A while back, I had a wonderful friend and neighbor.  Mrs. Neighbor lived with Mr. Husband in a house that was always full of teenagers (some of them were even  hers).  Well, one weekend, Mr. Husband took the teenagers on a camping trip and left Mrs. Neighbor with the house completely to herself.  This had never happened before.  There was much rejoicing on the part of Mrs. Neighbor, but secretly I was was worried about her being in that big house all alone.  I immediately decided to be a nosey neighbor put myself on guard duty for the weekend.

The very first night, I noticed that her car  wasn’t in the driveway when I went to bed.  This was a bit strange, considering she was always home and in bed before me. 

When I woke up the next morning, her car still wasn’t in the driveway.  I started to become concerned.  I called Mrs. Neighbor’s cell right away… no answer.  I sent her a text.  WHERE ARE YOU? ARE YOU OKAY?  A couple minutes later, there was still no response.  Mrs. Neighbor always responds quickly to my text messages, so I knew right away something was very wrong.  What if she was in the hospital?  What if she had gotten in a car wreck?  Who should I call?  Mr. Husband was completely unreachable, out exploring the wilderness.  I called and texted Mrs. Neighbor repeatedly while trying to think of what to do next.

And then the thought hit me–oh, my god.  Her dogs!  They were always in their kennels when no one was home.  Had they been let out?  Had they been fed? Were they alive?   

By now I had worked myself into quite the panic over the whereabouts of Mrs. Neighbor.  Always cool under pressure, I sprang into action.  I would do the one thing I could–I would make sure the animals were taken care of.  I marched myself into her house, let the dogs out of their kennels, and began hunting for the dog food.  I searched closets, cupboards, nooks, and crannies.  Finally I found a can of wet food and divided it between the two dogs, who were very grateful.  Satisfied I had done my very best to keep her animals alive, I returned them to their kennels.

Actually, I only managed to get one of them back in.  The other, a grumpy wiener dog named Max, was not so eager to return to confinement. Good will forgotten, he barked and snipped at me while I tried everything I could think of to convince him to cooperate.  I used treats.  I used my  nice happy voice.  I used my firm no-nonsense voice (which was really my irritated voice).  I tried chasing him around the house with a laundry basket, hoping to trap him underneath. 

And this was the point when Mrs. Neighbor returned home to find me in my pajamas, wielding a laundry basket over my  head while I chased her dog around the house calling him unpleasant names.

There was some awkwardness while I tried to explain my concern for her safety, and that of her animals.  Where were you?, I asked, fully expecting some sort of mishap that had kept her away all night.

Turns out she was at the grocery store.  The dogs had only been alone for an hour when I barged in to rescue them.


Always the good sport, Mrs. Neighbor simply thanked me for feeding her dogs cat food, took the laundry basket from me, and sent me home.  

I learned a valuable lesson that day, one I thought I’d share during this season of giving and helping our neighbors.  It is always good to lend a helping hand… just make sure your help is actually wanted.

And as a bonus, here’s another tip:  if you’re going to break into your neighbors’ house to rescue their dogs, be sure to put some pants on first.

Have you ever been overly helpful? I’d love to hear about it!


A Night of Football and Peanut Butter

PirateGoing to a Homecoming game really shouldn’t be so complicated.

I had planned on going to the game for only a little bit, so I didn’t stress when I somehow managed to leave the house without the diaper bag (at least I had the baby, right?).  We get there nice and early, score rockstar parking and perfect seats, and sit down to enjoy each other’s company (which you know is the only reason I went, I have no idea what football even is).  Five minutes into J’s very entertaining antics, there’s a suspicious rumbling, and a very distinctive eye-watering odor coming from his general presence.  Awesome.  The game hadn’t even started yet.  So much for just going home during halftime.  Back to the car with the boy I go, sadly waving goodbye to my parking spot.  At least our seats would still be waiting for us, thanks to my family. 

Once at home, I change J’s pants in record time, let the dog in, give her food, and prepare to give her medicine, all the while blocking J’s efforts get into every no-no in the house.  (Less than five minutes home, and the house looks like a tornado hit it.  There’s not a bowl left in the cupboards, not a toy in his toybox.  He even managed to empty the bottom drawer on my dresser.  How does he *do* that?)  I stuff the dog’s pills in peanut butter (gross), and it’s at this point that J makes a beeline to play in the dog’s water dish (aka, toilet).   Normally, the doors are shut so it’s not an issue, but the dog needed a drink and we were supposed to be leaving the house, so I had opened the bathroom  door. 

My hands are covered in peanut butter (have I mentioned before that I’m awkward and kind of klutzy?), and in the process of running to scoop my son out of the toilet (at least it’s been cleaned today) I somehow manage to spread it to my pants, my elbow, and of course, Jayden.  Lather us both up in soap (“That’s yucky!” doesn’t even begin to cover this situation), strip him out of his dripping shirt, and then remember that I never made it home to do laundry today, so the only clean thing J has is an orange shirt.  Orange is The Enemy, I can’t put him in that.  My sister would kill me.  Suddenly I’m the tornado, destroying my semi-clean room in the effort of finding something suitably clean and un-orange for the boy to wear.  J helps by removing every book off the bookshelf.  Thanks, son. 

I emerge from the piles of clothing triumphant, and a very happy baby shoots squealing out of the room, crawling just as fast as his little legs could propel him.  Just as I’m about to catch the wee monster, he trips (that’s my boy), landing face first on the wood floor.  Oh, the tears.  The silent scream.  Red face. 

There’s hugs, kisses, nursing, and finally he’s forgotten that his mouth hurts… and instead he’s drifting off to sleep.  No, baby, I paid to get into the game, and it hasn’t even started yet!  (Correction: it’s starting right now!)  Luckily, J became distracted by something, I have no idea what, so I stuff him in his shirt, grab the diaper bag, and out the door we go. 

Only now, there’s nowhere to park.  I mean, nowhere.  For blocks.  I should have just left the car at home and marched myself the whole way.  Twenty minutes later, I’m still hunting for a spot in this state and debating just going home (but I paid to get in).  My family was beginning to think I’d fallen off the planet.  Finally I find a spot about 3 miles away, and I was thankful.  Wrap up the boy, and off we go. 

Just as I reach the bleachers, I realize that my shirt is getting wet.  J must have missed the diaper, awesome.  I did not grab an extra pair of pants, of course, because of the lack of clean clothes.  Sure enough, when I pull him out of his little wrap cocoon, his pants are wet.  Well, the boy and I are just going to have to suffer through being covered in baby pee, because there’s not a chance in hell I’m going to turn around and walk all the way back to my car now.  And forget halftime, we’re fully committed to the game now.  (It was actually decided after much debate between my sister and I that J had not, in fact, peed on me, but that he had gotten wetter than I realized during his Toilet Bowl Adventure.  Not sure which is worse, actually.)

The thing about football games, apparently, is that they go on forever.  And of course, I have no idea what’s going on, so I cheer when other people cheer, but the rest of the time I spent trying to prevent J from whacking the guy in front of us (the guy did not find this amusing) and chattering with my sister (who may  have actually wanted to watch the game, I don’t know).  Sometime in the last minute and a half of the game (which of course lasted at least twenty), J finally gave it up and fell asleep.  Not in the wrap, as I had planned, making it easy to carry him during the long hike to the car, but on my lap, in a tangled pile of wrap and blankets. 

Amazingly, he stayed asleep through the awkward walk to my sisters car and the rough hand off as I dumped him in her lap while my mom and I went to retreive my car.  Then we unwrap him from the mess of blanket and I gently place him in his car seat (by gently, I mean quietly curse as I bump his head and plop him awkwardly in the seat).  He didn’t even stir.  I thought for sure he would wake up when I tried to get him out at home, but all that football and wiggling must have worn him out, because I got him all the way inside, past the happy dog who licked him on our way by, and into bed without so much as a whimper.  Finally, sweet success.

Invasion of the Bees

I opened the patio door to let the dog out this afternoon and, no exaggeration, at least ten bees rushed in. Next thing I know, the dog is chasing the bees, the baby is chasing the dog (quite delighted with this new game), and I am chasing the baby while doing that ducking thing that is somehow supposed to protect me from the bees.

Baby successfully caught, I retreat to our bedroom (still bee-free) and consider my options. Perhaps I can abandon the rest of the house to the bees? We don’t use it much anyway. Maybe the bees will appreciate such a grand gesture and we can live together in peace. Maybe if I wait long enough, the dog will have them all taken care of? Probably not.

I cautiously venture from our safety zone to find that the bees have not, in fact, disappeared. They are everywhere-swarming the high chair, the garbage, the windows. And the trusty dog has given up the fight and is simply enjoying the show. I debate getting the fly swatter, but my hand-eye coordination really leaves a lot to be desired and that’s a sure way to get stung.

I managed to encourage most of the bees out the door they came in (dog too, lot of help she was), but in the end there were two that were very content buzzing low on the kitchen floor. Once J discovered them, he was sure they were a neat new toy just for him. In a flash of mommy genius, I grabbed a big tuperware bowl that he had been playing with before the whole fiasco started and trapped the bees underneath.

Except now I have a little bee-tent in my kitchen (and for a baby, that’s even more fun than the bees themselves). I suppose I could just leave them there? If I get duct tape, J wouldn’t be able to set them free (we can’t do that. The number one rule of bee etiquette is Don’t Piss Off the Bee, and I’m pretty sure that trapping said bee under a bowl breaks that rule). At least they have each other, and won’t be lonely. No one wants to die alone.

Except now I’m thinking about how all the honey bees are dying and how that’s bad for pollenation and our planet and now I am Part of the Problem. What kind of example am I setting for my son? Feeling a little guilty, I immediately begin Operation Free Bee. I find an empty box and cut off a side to make a bee-tent lid. Ever so carefully, I slide the cardboard under the bee-tent. As I carry the whole thing to the door, I tell the bees, “This is all been a big misunderstanding. Please don’t be angry, and tell your friends to be nice to me.” I awkwardly balance the bee tent and push the door open with my elbow, blocking the baby with my legs as I step outside. Cringing and returning to the protective ducking stance of earlier, I lift the bowl and prepare to face the Wrath of the Bee.

When nothing happens, I look down to find two crumpled bee bodies on the cardboard lid. My son watches with innocent eyes as I dispose of the evidence of the murdered bees. So much for good examples and saving the planet.

We are on the lookout for retaliation from the bee community.

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