O is for Olives Suck


I’ve never been able to forgive green olives for what they did to me as a child, which is partly why I hate their whole kind.

I was a naive child, unaware of a world full of olives that masqueraded as delicious green grapes. I saw that tiny bowl of faux grapes, and my child heart leaped for joy as I popped that sucker into my mouth and crunched.

It was not sweet. It did not make my heart dance. It tasted like broken dreams and death, and my face reflected the betrayal I felt in my heart as my parents laughed at me.

So, I eschew all olives. I don’t care if black or green olives are good for you or bring you good luck in the New Year. (Or is that black-eyed peas?) I pick them off pizzas and remove them from salads. I don’t even pretend the plump green eye balls are scary, green eye balls.

Olives are evil. Period. No arguments. The end.

Your turn: What foods do you despise most desperately?



N is for Not-So-Classy TV Shows


I have a confession to make: I watched Jerry Springer one morning to see what that was all about. Mostly hair-pulling and yelling, if you’re curious.

I guess I’d call it my sick day guilty pleasure, but I find the weird civil court cases and paternity test shows fascinating when I find myself home for daytime TV. Maybe it is a bizarre mixture of prescription drugs and fresh-from-the-can chicken noodle, but I trade my husband’s documentaries and news presets for Trish issuing lie detector tests and Bridezillas throwing wedding cake.

It’s like a train wreck; you just can’t look away.

Afterwards, I’m in a daytime reality show hangover, wondering why I thought watching two grown men wrestle over a cheating woman was quality TV, swearing I’ll watch that PBS documentary on aliens and the Mayan instead next time.

Until I see the commercial for tomorrow’s show: Cousins and Break Dancers. The Siren song claims another.



M is for Missing You Music


It’s the last Twisted Tuesday Mixtape for a while, and I’m feeling like the sad dude in the country songs missing the One that got away, strumming sadly on my imaginary guitar. This post is dedicated to Jen Kehl, who always tagged me on Twitter and never gave me up or let me down or ran around or deserted me.

Now, that I’ve properly channeled Rick Astley – let’s get down to this Missing You Mixtape:

“Always On My Mind” by Michael Buble

First, I’d like to thank Michael Buble for providing the waterworks for this post. I started listening to this song in preparation for this mixtape, and it made me want to reach into the Internet and hug all my mixtape peeps and tell Jen I always loved her and promise to never miss another Twisted Mixtape Tuesday ever, ever again.

This is the part of the blog post Jen Kehl issues a restraining order. Dang it. Not again.

“For Good” by Kristen Chenoweth and Indina Menzel (skip to 1:40 for the singing – the show itself is not supposed to be recorded)

I fell in love with this song in college, and it always makes me think of the people I love spread out all over the world – and I always sing Indina’s part because I want to be her. Don’t judge me.

“Breakeven” by The Script

Break ups suck, especially when you are the dumped, not the dumpee. I more have experience with crushes falling in love with my best friends instead of me, but the end result still is the same: eating chocolate ice cream, crying, while stalking him on Facebook. I have Ryan now so I don’t do that anymore, but there are still those nostalgic moments.

“Someone Like You” by Adele

I used to sing this song with a hair brush in hand about a guy that will remain nameless to protect the guilty. I thought I could be Adele, and my roommate never broke the news to me that I couldn’t. And while he has someone and I have the best man on the planet, I still channel my inner Adele to my husband’s delight bemused indifference.

“Here Comes Goodbye” by Rascal Flatts

My last song for the last mixtape. *sniff* I even obeyed the rules for you, Jen. I know we’ll be together again someday, but I’m going to miss you. And I had to close with a country song because my love of music began with country plus Rascal Flatts is my music soul mate.

I’ll see you guys when the mixtape returns. I’ll miss you!



L is for Lethargy

Allergy season is upon us, and like usual, it is kicking my butt. I attempted to go on a girls’ weekend, but it got cut short due to death by nasal congestion and burning eye sockets.

Therefore, most of my weekend has been spent in bed, whether by the oceanfront or by the pile of laundry in my bedroom. I staggered around in a  drug-induced stupor, a roll of toilet paper in one hand to serve as a poor woman’s Kleenex and a Wal-Mart bag in the other hand to dispose of the cheapo snot rags.


Bed hair at its finest

But, hey, while I was lying lethargic on the couch and wearing one of my husband’s infinitely comfortable t-shirts, I got waited on hand and foot while watching HIMYM reruns. I’m pathetic when I’m sick, and I unabashedly pull out the whimper voice and the sad eyes as needed.

I’m horrible. :)

But I’m back to work today, sniffling but upright, and wishing today was pajama day at work. Slipper Day will have to do.




K is for Kindred Spirits


Ever since I first read the Anne of Green Gables series, I’ve loved the phrase “kindred spirits.” It was always a lovely way to express the idea that someone – whether you just met them or had known them forever – thought like you and understood the way you tick. Where I didn’t expect to find these kindred spirits was on the Internet, but there is a clan of people that just get me and occasionally hang out here and make me laugh, cry, and want to give abundant amounts of hugs.

Today, I was going to try to explain what each of these ladies mean to me in smushy, mushy ways and leave you all in tears, but I decided against it. Mostly because I hate crying unless I’ve been laughing until I’ve gotten my core workout done for the day. Instead, I decided to let these ladies tell you for themselves just how they became my kindred spirits: blog comments. They’ve been there for me through good times and bad, some longer than others, but these quotes show just why these six ladies made it on here today.

1. Kate of “Did That Just Happen?” 

I don’t know how people don’t live without books! I always have several waiting on me to read, and when all of the sudden I’m out, well I pull out my favorite series and start them over from the beginning (which, when it comes to Harry Potter or JD Robb, can take me some time!)”

“I have monkey toes! I pick stuff up with them all the time!” 

“Okay, honestly, I just learned the other day that sweat pants are not considered real pants. Seriously, I always thought that they were real and acceptable. So, I decided that that since I feel they are real to me, the rest of the world just has to live with it!”

“I didn’t silently laugh – I bust out laughing and spewed my water over my laptop!!! The moment you said wax paper I knew what was coming… I’ve made the same mistake. It only takes once to realize that wax paper and parchment paper are not interchangeable!”

“Oh my goodness!! I so almost typed that in when I was replying – but figured I was the only one in the world that was tempted by the “As Seen on TV” !!! YAY!!! I’m not alone on this planet!”

“Oh!!! and what about those people that never use a comma?!? I have to read those statuses a dozen times to try and figure out what on earth they are saying, or attempting to say!”

“hahahaha – we’ve had such a long winter that I am totally off my game when it comes to shaving… the monthly diva dinner was last week and my BFF’s mom said “Just wear pants for another week or two”.  :) She wasn’t shaving either.

Misty of Misty’s Laws - I know you can’t really know if you love someone before you officially meet them, but I’m pretty sure that this woman gets me so I love her face, even though I’ve never even seen her face. Not even in pictures. But how can I not love her? After all , she bought me a freakin’ ROUS. She gets me.


I love the “I didn’t mean to jog him so hard” line. I have seen that movie a ton of times and can pretty much quote the entirety. I, also, have not read the book, and I’m wondering now how that is possible. Must do so, immediately.”

“I would say that a good 3 out of 5 days each week, I get out to my car and realize I have to go back inside to grab a breakfast bar. I do this all the freaking time. It shouldn’t be so hard to remember to grab one as I’m leaving with my coffee, but apparently it is. I still love that my kids seem to be surprised when I pop back in. Hmmm, mabye they’re just dumb. Meh, whatever.”

“I LOVE LOVE LOVE sushi. Yum. But why does that first sushi pic look like the roll is wearing a mop wig? What is that on top?”

“Well, OBVIOUSLY I love you even more now. I didn’t know you bled Purple and Black as well. It was a good day to be a Ravens fan. I went to the parade on Tuesday afterwards as well, and got to see a some of the players. It was kinda crazy.”

“There was a link to a site of autocorrects on FB last week, and one of the autocorrect words was “Wawa Skittletits.” To which I immediately responded that from henceforth, I SHALL be referred to only as that. It is written.”

“Why do I have an overwhelming desire to send you chocolate all of a sudden. Must. Resist. Urge.”

“Holy CRAP, that’s awesome!! I mean, I was once paid in a vibrator because I mentioned Trojan and was doing a giveaway, but CHEESE?? Oh man. I’m feeling a blog post coming on. I mean, I need to be paid in some type of delicious food product as well!! I am super jealous of your immense sucess right now. And I’m also very hungry for some reason.”

“I’m just glad you weren’t wearing a red shirt. Would have been a WHOLE other story. ;)”

“If you were to get me chinese take out right now, I’d love you forever. I get you.

Sarah of Established 1975 - I don’t even know how we found each other. I can’t remember – mostly because I’m almost 26 and losing my mind. But, it was like finding your long lost crazy sister or your blog doppelganger. And I can’t wait to read more from her.

My badonkadonk is also going with that logic. And my badonkagut.”

“Girl, you are not alone. I’m not a horrible cook, or even a bad one, but I hate to do it and like you I also let takeout pick up a lot of the slack. One of the reasons I hate it is the clean-up afterwards. Such a mess! I’m just making additional work for myself! (Plus the cooking work!) Not. Worth. It.”

“I just read that chicken nuggets are like 56% corn products. So uh… you’re like… half vegetarian. YOU HEALTH NUT YOU!


Sarah Almond of The Sadder But Wiser Girl - Fellow Sarah. Check. Librarian. Check. Lover of all things nerdy. Check. She is me; I am her. I’m convinced of it. How can two people be this alike and not be each other in parallel universes or something sciencey like that?

LOVE LOVE LOVE… Princess Bride is one of the most well written and brilliant movies ever. Have you read the book? I say this because the book is just as wonderful as the movie.”

“I totally get this, because I’m there, with the addition of one small dictator. You left out the part about sobbing bit wet tears onto the laptop as I do every time I look at the job boards. I applied at PetCo this week (hangs head in shame.)”

“You have the deodorant wars too? Once my husband’s deodorant sat on the stand next to his chair in the living room FOR A WEEK. Why would he need that there? Was he getting all hot and sweaty playing the Sims and was keeping it in case he needed extra protection?”

“I too say that all of my freckles will hopefully merge into a tan someday! I love how weirdos find our blogs, don’t you?”

“I’ve left my purse on top of my car and my keys hanging from the trunk as I’ve driven around. I’m shocked I never left the baby seat on top of the car when my kids were little! (THANK GOODNESS FOR THAT)

Kerry of Kerry’s Organized Chaos - She is my fellow cheddar Chex Mix lover, and I know that if I see her in my notifications, I’m going to laugh my butt off.

I’m incredible in my car. In my car, I could have a 5 album deal. On a stage, they give me all thumbs down.”

“They need a button on the smoke detectors label Kitchen Mishap, not a real fire…chill. Those things are terrible to turn off.”

“Wait…You mean I’m supposed to STOP when people impale my vehicle. Duly noted.”

“I can tackle the bag of chex mix for you if you need it…”.

“My dad made me mow once. I ran over a tree. Then I didn’t have to mow again.”

“Does Bed Bath and Beyond sell at toilet seat safety net? If not, they should.

Erin of Welcome to the Nut House  - While she lives on some beautiful but strange island called St. Kitts and I live in Southeast USA, she and I are in similar time of life: we’re both childless and have hubbies going through school. So we bonded. And it’s been awesome.

I have a bra problem. Ever since i got engaged and thought, “oh, i have a reason to have pretty bras now,” i almost can’t keep myself from buying them. So many colors and patterns and styles…. It’s an addiction. Almost as bad as my addiction to shoes. I cannot be trusted in the shoe department alone.”

“I hate washing dishes, so for me it’s worse to do one or two pieces at a time than to get a whole sinkful done at once. But then it’s a whole sinkful… and that’s a lot of dishes… and I don’t like to wash dishes… so it’s really this whole terrible cycle. We’ll actually have a dishwasher in our new apartment – my very first dishwasher!! – but I won’t be able to use it because electric bills here are so obscenely high that it’s cheaper to pay extra water to wash them myself. So that part will be pretty awful – like having a giant chocolate candy bar dangling just out of reach.  :(Maybe I can convince the Mister to let me use it a couple times a month??”

“The Mister and I are definitely trekkies! My father had the christmas ornaments growing up, so it only made sense that i find someone who wants to watch the entire series on netflix as study breaks from vet school. Live long and prosper, my friend

These are my kindred spirits. And please go to their blogs and show them some love!



J is for Junior High


My littlest sister – age 13 – texted me recently about a boy who didn’t like her back, and we talked about how any boy would be stupid to not fall head over heels for that cutie patootie. Though, I’m still unsure about my baby sister doing anything but playing with dolls and self-administering cootie shots. But that’s neither here nor there.

What it did reinforce so strongly in my mind was the fact that I’m so glad that I’m no longer in junior high. In junior high, I was rocking the brace face and doodling “Mrs. Benjamin Hall” in my notebook, though I couldn’t get up the nerve to actually talk to my brown-eyed, freckle-faced crush. My journal chronicles the angst of a pre-teen trying to analyze if my 5’1″ lover liked me back by his tone when he called me “short” or detailing why I wasn’t speaking to one of my friends that week – e.g. “Friend A and Friend B paired up in gym instead of asking me. Clearly, they don’t want to be friends with me anymore.”There were the occasional serious moments – like my 13 year old fears of what would happen after 9/11 or the worries after finding out my school principal had an inappropriate and illegal relationship with one of the high-schoolers at my Christian school – but it’s mostly a humorous look at what silliness goes on in the mind of a junior high kid.

I can’t imagine what it’d be like to be a junior kid today. There are cell phones, Facebook, and YouTube. I didn’t have to think about sexting, cyber-bullying, or virtual friending or unfriending. My “selfies” were taken on a throw-away film camera, where you often found out that half of them were out of focus or cut half your face off. Sometimes, grown up life kinda sucks with its bills and responsibilities, but I’m completely certain I wouldn’t want to go back to those three years of my life again.

I’ll keep my 10+ years of experience, thanks.



I is for IBS

You know what I haven’t blogged about in awhile? My health struggles with IBS.

While I know you’ve missed my discussions of nausea and my ever-irritable bowels, it’s just not one of those things that intrinsically brings humor to my life, though I’m sure that I could come up with some ever-classy fart jokes if I didn’t tell Ryan that “I’m a lady” and don’t speak of such things.

Shhh…don’t tell him.

But in case you’re on the IBS boat too and haven’t been following this blog long, I’ve been diagnosed with IBS for about 3 years now. I’ve managed to have tubes stuck down my throat and up my rear to make sure my insides aren’t self-destructing to no avail. I’ve taken about 6 different prescriptions and countless more over-the-counter remedies to convince my stomach and gut that it needs to chill out. My insides claw me from the inside when I eat too much dairy, despite my love affair with cheese and ice cream, and greasy, fatty foods make my body cry out, “What did we ever do to you to deserve this?”

Currently, we’re in a time where my stomach and I have made a truce: I promise to not fill it with too many bad things while it rewards me by not freaking out at work too often. There have been times when I’ve been forced to go on the BRAT diet because everything else makes me want to curl up in a ball and die. I do not suggest this diet as a long-term habit, though I did lose about 40 pounds each time I’ve experienced this.


This is my “I can only eat bananas and toast today” size, and “I’m so hungry I might beat you with a stick” face.

IBS has been quite the roller coaster for me these past several years. I’ve definitely gone through some low points where I really just wanted to stay in bed all the time. It’s one of those diagnoses they give you that is so incredibly hard to explain to other people because it is not anything that they can find working improperly and can cure. Instead, you can be told that your pain is in your head, and if you’d just stop being a crazy pants, you’d feel better. (In nicer words…usually) But, if you’ve been diagnosed with IBS, I just want you know I’m just a comment or a email away. Ryanandsarahbalding at gmail dot com – and we’ll commiserate over this crap together.

Crap. Hahaha…I just made an IBS pun.

The end.