The Life of Bon: August 2012

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Have a laugh. It's on me

My students are idiot.

I found a bunch of hilarious newspaper headlines and put them all over my door and next to the pencil sharpener (places in the classroom where teens tend to hang out, you know how it is).  I figured kids could enjoy a good laugh while they sharpened away.

Only they didn't get my newspaper jokes.

Take, for example, this newspaper headline:

Hilarious, right?  Today I watched as a student furrowed his eyebrows, scrunched his lips, and stared intently at the newspaper.  "It's funny, Brad."  I tried to help.  "Who's Diana?" was his only response.

DO YOU SEE WHAT I'M WORKING WITH HERE, PEOPLE?!?  I figured since my efforts to find hilarious newspaper headlines were obviously in vain, I would at least share them with my blogging buddies.  You guys will see the humor in these, right?


Yah... I'll let you guys know if I see him...

And for my favorite.....

Ah, reminds me so much of Price, the little hick town where I grew up.

If those newspaper headlines didn't cheer you up, just remember- it's a three day weekend. 

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

How to stay on top of your blog. Not literally. That's weird.

With school starting back up again, all Hell is going to break loose for me.  It's easy to blog in the summer.  My days are long and lazy.  In the school year, my days are quick and chaotic- like frenzied outbursts of energy.  Today I did something completely stupid and told my principal that I would teach an extra class.  The money seemed tempting at the time, but now I realize that in one fell swoop I just managed to give away my prep time AND give myself more papers to grade.  Takes some kind of ninja to manage that, I tell you!

All of these things were swarming around in my little head when I read am email from Kathrin wondering how I teach full time, grade papers, commute, and stay on top of blogging.

Good question I thought.

The short answer, if you want to know, is that I don't.  I rarely feel in control and I never feel like I have everything done.  So just know that as you read this post that everything needs to be taken with a grain of salt.

The long answer, if you want to know, is long.  I've detailed it into 12 steps.  You know, like a 12 step program.  For recovering from blogging.  No?  Too weird?  Okay.  Here goes.

1.  Set time limits.  I only let myself be on the computer for a certain amount of time.  For example, right now it is 6:40 pm.  I am going to finish writing this post and write my post for tomorrow.  I need to do a status on facebook and twitter and respond to a couple of emails.  My goal is to be off by 8:00.  I absolutely will force myself off at 8:30.  No wasting time on facebook or twitter- when I get on those sites it's only to post, not to surf.  Perusing facebook and twitter is for when I have free time, not work time.

2.  Treat your blog like a business.  Now, I know a lot of bloggers out there that will totally disagree with me on this one.  I probably read once a day, "I blog for me.  I only do this because it's fun and I enjoy it.  I never blog because I have to."  I kind of believe that, but I kind of don't.  Anybody who even so much as has a button is in some way promoting their blog, and this means they have some kind of ulterior motive- some reason why they're blogging besides just for kicks and giggles.  And I think this is totally okay.  I will be the first to admit that I have an ulterior motive behind my blog.  I love teaching, but one day I would like to get paid to write full time.  Writing is my passion.  I see blogging as my door into the writing world.  If I look at blogging that way- as something that is taking me to where I want to be in the future, then it's easy to post every day.  If I only blogged because I felt like it, I would find a million excuses not to blog when my life gets stressful and busy.  By treating blogging like a business, I ensure that I do it every day.

3.  Keep organized.  Calendars, to do lists, planners, etc.  I don't know how people keep on top of blogging without them.  Especially when you get to the point where you are accepting guest posts, sending guest posts, looking for sponsors, hosting giveaways, etc.  You need to know when you're starting a giveaway, when you're ending a giveaway.  You need to know which day each of your sponsors are going to be on the blog and you need to let them know as well.

See those names in boxes?  Those are the when and who of my sponsored posts.  Keeps me sane.

4.  Plan sponsor stuff ahead of time.  Whether you are accepting sponsors or sponsoring another blog, you got to have this ready before the day comes.  I try to send out instructions for my sponsors three days before the sponsorship starts.  This usually means I am sending out a mass email on the 27th or 28th of each month.  When I am sponsoring a blog, I try to send my guest post as soon as I have paid for the spot.  That way I don't have to think about it anymore- it's just taken care of.  Staying ahead of the curve on sponsor stuff  makes me feel like I'm ahead of the game on everything.

5.  Memorize this:  "Your problem is not my emergency."  This is a motto I always use in my classroom, but have found that it translates into the blogging world, too.  In my classroom I give my students expectations, deadlines, etc.  My world can't stop when they can't meet those because they are having a problem.  The assignment is still due and I am not required to fix all their little issues.  I'll help when and if it's convenient for me, but I can't let myself get stressed out because of their problems.  The same goes for blogging.  As long as I do my part of the deal, I don't  need to worry about the other bloggers.  This applies especially in sponsoring.  Last month I had a girl who didn't get her blurb to me in time for the guest post.  I had told her two weeks before when I needed it and she didn't get it to me.  So the guest post went up without it.  When she sent me the blurb four hours later and begged me to include it with the rest, I had to say no.  I was watching a movie with Hubs, relaxing and enjoying my evening.  I wasn't going to rush to the computer to fix the post.  It might sound harsh, but I've gotta keep my sanity around here.  Her problem wasn't my emergency.

6.  Do things when you're thinking about them.  If you can't, then write it down.  If at all possible, I try to do something as soon as it pops into my head.  "Oh, I need to send that button."  "Oh, I need to pay that invoice."  "Oh, I need to respond to her email."  If I can't do it at that moment, I write it down in my planner so that I am at least sure that I get to it later.

This is my brainstorming for the post you are reading right this second.  Can you tell I wrote these ideas the second they popped in my head?  They're written on a math worksheet, for crying out loud!

7.  Get people to help you.  This involves other bloggers as well as people in your personal life.  I have no problem asking someone to do a giveaway for me, asking to swap a post with a popular blogger, or asking advice from a blogger I admire.  The way I see it, we're all in this together.  I also make Hubs help.  Hubs understands the greater picture of what I want from my blog, so he's patient when I have to be a recluse for a couple of hours and work on blog stuff.  Sometimes he has to make dinner and sometimes he has to fold the laundry, but shouldn't men do that stuff anyway?

8.  Pick and choose/ Learn to let some things go.  You can't do everything with blogging.  I tried to do a link up once and I didn't love it.  So I quit.  I do giveaways very non consistently- mostly just when an awesome opportunity presents itself.  I rarely link up to others' link up parties just because I don't have the time and honestly the topics usually don't interest me.  I don't think this makes me a bad blogger or a selfish blogger, it just  means that thinking about all that stuff stresses me out.  Just the thought of entering those huge group giveaways with 42 prizes and 119 entries makes me overwhelmed. (seriously.  WHO came up with that idea?!?)  And thinking about hosting one of those and setting the whole giveaway up- well you can just shoot me now.  I just don't have the patience or desire to set one of those up.  I imagine they take hours of organization and focus to set up.  I admire those bloggers who do it, and I recognize that it does leaps and bounds to grow their blog, I've just accepted that it will likely never be me.  The side of blogging that I love the most is the writing, and so I try to focus as much of my time on that as I can.  If I have to cut giveaways and link parties, I can still survive.

9.  Plan ahead/Brainstorm.  I have never once in my life sat down at my computer to type a post and not known what I was going to write.  The very thought of that gives me an ulcer.  I like to feel prepared and ready.  In a way, I suppose I am always blogging, and that is because my mind is constantly brainstorming things to write.  Yesterday as I was leaving my house I thought how beautiful the early mornings are.  BAM!  Blog post.  Today my school pressured  me in to teaching an extra class.  BAM!  Blog post.  Hubs drew an ugly picture of me.  BAM!  Blog post.  Almost always there is something that happens during the day that inspires a post, and if not, I have a list of posts that I could write at any time.  Ideas that are floating up around my little brain that can be morphed into a post whenever wherever.  If I know a post is going to be a list type post (this one, for example, or 21 rules for using the internet) I often brainstorm for several days, writing down different ideas as they come.  Then, when it is time to sit down and write the actual post, the hard part is already done.

10.  Accept imperfections.  I'll be the first to admit I'm a stickler for grammar.  But I've had to learn to let some grammar stuff go on the blog.  An occasional typo isn't going to kill anyone.   In the early days I read every post three times before it was published.  Now I write it and edit it only once.  I know all the big blogging cowgirls say to edit your pictures, but I straight up don't have time to do that.  So I don't.  And the pictures look good enough.  Not amazing, but good enough, and I don't think my readers mind that much.  My blog doesn't focus on photos so why would I focus on making them look perfect?   And let's face it, if I thought people were visiting my blog for the pictures then I'd have an entirely different problem on my hands.

11.  Have goals and rewards.  Anybody who is serious about blogging would like it to turn into something "big".  The problem is a lot of us don't have a clear path or what that "big" thing is or how to get to the big path.  And so we lose focus or motivation when it comes to blogging.  My big picture goal is what keeps me blogging on days when I am dead dired.  Within five years I would like to be able to quit my full time teaching so that I can have kids.  I would like to supplement Hubs' income with earnings from my blog as well as articles that I write for magazines or other internet sites.  I would very much like to be similar to what Nat the Fat Rat is.  In order to do this I have smaller goals constituting how much traffic I am aiming for (1000 hits/day) how many blogs I am going to sponsor (2-3/month), how often I am going to post (5 xs/week), and how many new followers I would like each month (100-150).  My closest "big goal" is the 1000 followers mark- I'm aiming to hit that in September.  You better believe when I hit the one grand I'm making Hubs take me out to dinner.  I've done this goal and reward system throughout my whole blogging journey.  When I hit 100 followers I treated myself to a pedicure.  When I got my first official sponsor I bought myself a necklace because it was a goal I had worked toward for months.  Heck, I even celebrated the first day I got "hate mail".  Even rude comments have a deeper meaning in blog world.

12.  Relax  Sometimes you gotta call it quits for the night.  On these nights, throw up a half put together post with an unedited picture and some nonsensical ramblings and then get yourself into the bathtub.  No one can go full steam forever.  Weekends are sacred to me, and I do little to no blogging or school work on the weekends.  During the weeks the hour of 4-5 pm is my selfish hour- I flirt with Hubs or take a nap or just watch a little Teen Mom with a gallon of chocolate peanut butter ice cream.  I'm afraid of burn out- both with teaching and my blog.  Both things are very important to me, so I have to make sure that in addition to taking care of them, I am taking care of me.  A happy Bon makes for a happy Blog.

Hey, you successful bloggers out there!  Any secrets that I missed?  How do you stay on top of everything?  Do you disagree with anything that I said?  Share your stuff!

P.S.  It's 8:12.  Done 18 minutes early.  Who's awesome?  This girl!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

An ode to the morning

6:26 am

6:43 am 

6:58 am 

7:04 am

There is something very empowering about waking up early.

Something about the dawn, the morning dew, the crickets that are still half chirping.
Something about the brand spanking new start to a day, the no mistakes, the totally clean state.

This thought popped into my head early this morning as I crept up the stairs of my mom's house and shut the front door quietly behind me so as not to wake the people who were still asleep inside.

For some reason I feel strong and alive at that incredibly early hour.  Most of the world was still sleeping when I left my house at 6:20 am, but it felt good to be up before everyone, as if somehow I was ahead of the curve.  I felt like I was in complete control of myself simply because I had managed to drag myself out of bed at an hour that we'd all like to pretend doesn't exist.  And if I can wake up at 6 am, surely I can do anything I set my mind to.

Somehow I feel closer to God in the early hours of the morning.  As if He's more alive, more present, more ready to listen.  (Or maybe it's that as the day goes on, everything else pushes Him out?)  The early morning seems almost a gift from God, "Here, Bon.  This is brand new.  You get to do with it whatever you want."

Monday, August 27, 2012

Auditions for America's Next Top Model. I've got myself a winner!

Tomorrow is the first day of school.

I'm ready.
And I'm not ready.

So try to figure that one out.

I'm going to take a long, hot bubble bath and then hit the hay early.  No long, eloquent post tonight.  Just a good night's sleep.

Because I know you can't go a day without my endless ramblings, I've included a couple of links to my favorite school posts from last year.  I can't help but sit and wonder what the coming year has in store for me.

A post about when the "honeymoon" is over
A post about the day I let a student be teacher for the day
A post in which a student confused whores with horse
A post in which my students gave me a formal "review" at the end of the year
A post in  which I try very unsuccessfully to help a student write a thesis statement.
A post in which my students tattle on the sub.

If you're not into clicking links about high school students, you're in luck!  I've got Tanya here with me today to help me cover all my bases.  You know when you're reading a post and you literally start laughing out loud and your husband at the desk next to you has to say, "What's so funny?"  That's what happened when I was reading Tanya's post.  The girl is hilarious.  Any chick that can make fun of herself is gold as far as I'm concerned.  I've got her post bookmarked on my school computer.  If those kids tear me apart tomorrow, I know exactly where I'm going for a good laugh.


Hello all of you amazing Life of Bon readers! 

My name is Tanya and I blog over at Knowing Tanya. I know all you really want is to read more that Bonnie has to say, so I'll try to make this short and sweet, because I love her just as much as you guys do.
No really, I thought of re-naming my blog "Life of Ton" just to be like her but I wasn't sure Bon would like that so much... Something about not being original? I'm not sure.

Anyways, I guess I am supposed to tell you all about why I think I'm awesome and all that. So I decided to give you guys 8 reasons why I should be America's Next top Model. Because that is the definition of an awesome woman, right?

So, here we go! Reason #1- I have never ever seen a bad picture of myself.

HOT! That is the only why I can think to describe this picture.

Reason #2- I have mastered sexy poses. Make a pouty face and put your hand on your hip. I even taught my friend Sara (the girl in the pink) all she knows!

Reason #3- I am the most graceful person I know. Even while being attacked by bugs. Plus, I've only fallen down the stairs a handful of times this year. Those wobbly runways would be a cinch.

Reason #4- It is imposible for me to have a double chin. If the last picture wasn't a good enough demonstration of that, here is another.

Reason #5- I look awesome in a swim suit!

Reason #6- I'm humble. I feel like this is something a lot of ANTM's are lacking, so I think this would be a really great addition to the modeling world. I know when I look good and when I don't, because I pretty much just always look good.

Reason #7- I eat like a mouse and am constantly dieting. I've only won two eating contests in my life! 10 fully stuffed taco's and a whole pizza, very healthy. I know those  we models have to watch what they we eat.

Reason #8- My husband looks like Ryan Gosling with brown hair. When my nephew was watching the Notebook he even said, "Hey look! It's Uncle Alex!" If I can get a Ryan Gosling look-a-like, then obviously I should be ANTM!

BTW, that is Ryan Gosling wall paper! I know that is what you have all been scouring the internet for.

So if you guys want to learn how to look hot in your pictures, be a model, avoid double chins, and get a Ryan Gosling look-a-like, head on over to my blog!
I am full of much needed advice. I'm pretty sure even Bonnie could learn a thing or two from me!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Well, I'll be darned!

I'm just going to go ahead and say it.

Summer can't last forever.

This week was the week that I had to go back to work. Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday were days chalked full of meetings, trainings, and more meetings.  It wasn't until late Friday afternoon that I had a bit of time on my own. I returned to my classroom which I had so happily abandoned that first week of June.  I booted up the old computer and checked out my class rolls for next year.

This year my school is starting something called arena scheduling where the students choose their own teachers and their own class periods.  They build their own schedules, very similar to how most of us probably picked out classes in college.   Once a class is full, it is full, and students can no longer register for it.  What this basically means is that any student who is in my class is a student who has deliberately chosen to be in my class.  I am teaching classes of sophomores, juniors, and seniors.  My junior and senior classes will have students who I have already taught before as lower classman.  I wouldn't be speaking figuratively if I said that my jaw dropped when I saw my class lists. 

Of course there were the kids who I would expect to enroll in the class again- the A students, the teacher pets, the students who laughed at my every joke.  But then there were a few that just straight up shocked me.  Students who I was sure hated me, who were counting down the days until they could be free from my obnoxious teaching.  Just a few shockers on my rolls for next year:

- A boy who maybe said three words the entire year.  He didn't complete one assignment.  He failed all four quarters.  Every time I tried to talk to him after class about his grades he would look straight down and just nod or mutter one word responses.  I absolutely could not reach him.  Toward the end of the year he told me he didn't care to pass English and my energy would be better spent on kids who care.

- A kid who literally slept every day in my class.  Literally.  Every day.

-A girl who I had to tell numerous times to pull up her top because of cleavage.  It got so bad that one day that I sent her down to the principal's office for a new shirt to cover her up.  She stared ice daggers into my soul that day.

-A painfully shy boy who cried silent tears when I pulled him out to the hall and told him he wouldn't be receiving credit on his test because I had caught him cheating.  I thought for sure I had humiliated him to the point of no return.

-This kid who told me to "F off" when I took away his cell phone.

-A girl that I caught blatantly lying to me.  I called home to tell her parents about it.  She didn't sepak to me for a month after that.

-A girl who begged me to let her hand in an extra project so that she could pass the class.  I said no because she hadn't done all of the regular credit assignments in the class.  She stormed out of the classroom and muttered curse words under her breath.  She failed the class.

-A kid who told me point blank that he thinks all the projects that I assign are lame and the books we read are boring.

-A boy who tried to transfer out of my class mid year but couldn't, due to a fluke in the counselling system.

I feel like there is some kind of lesson to be learned in this, even though I'm not quite sure what it is.  Something about not knowing the effect that we are having on others even when it appears that we not making a difference.  All of these students I was certain I would never see again, that I had not reached them, that I had not met their needs.  I thought I had failed these students.  That I hadn't been a good enough teacher for them- that they hated me, that I had bored them, that I had treated them unfaily.  And yet they have voluntarily chosen to be in my class again.  I guess when it comes down to it, we really can't tell how big the impact is that we unknowingly have on others. 

And that is enough to make me all sorts of excited to start another year.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

To mow the lawn

We have a couple of items of business today.  Follow along while I make this short and snappy.
ITEM OF BUSINESS #1:  I've got just a few spots still open for Sponsorship in September.  Hurry your little buns over to reserve your place.  Think about it, September really is the best time to sponsor because now that I'm going back to work, I'll have a whole football field of students who will inevitably stalk me on twitter, find my blog, and start reading it religiously.  Lots of potential traffic!  Also, teenagers are idiots, you can tell them anything and they'll believe you, so I'm basically giving you 500 people who you can make do whatever you want.  Who doesn't want 500 teenagers alongside their $8 sponsorship?  Check out the deets here and email me at if you're interested.
ITEM #2:  Eryka has been my blogging buddy since the early days.  She was the first person I contacted about doing a post swap, and I tell you I was terrified out of my mind!  Now she's opening her own shop and because she's a total doll face, she wants to give some away to you lovelies.  She's giving away one shop item to three different people.  Three winners, oh my, can you even imagine?!?
Mandatory: Like "Made with Love" on facebook
Mandatory: Like "Life of Bon" on facebook.
Mandatory:  Comment saying you have done those two things.
Extra: Follow ABCDE Blog
Extra: Follow Eryka on twitter
Extra: Like "ABCDE" on facebook
Extra: Follow Life of Bon on GFC
Extra: Follow @thelifeofbon on twitter
Extra: Follow The Life of Bon on bloglovin
Extra: Share this post on facebook.
Extra: Share this post on twitter.
Possible nine entries!
Leave a comment for each one you do.   Old fashioned style. The giveaway ends Tuesday at 7:40 am.  because that's when I officially start teaching and there has to be something to get me through that Hellish hour.
You can also get a 10% off discount to the shop by using the code MWL10OFF
ITEM OF BUSINESS #3:  A love story.
I fell in love with Hubs the weekend he mowed the lawn.
We'd been dating a mere three weeks.  I took him home to meet my mom.  She seemed impressed.  Impressed enough to say, "Well, Greg, I hate to say this but if you're ready and willing, I do have some work for you."
She laughed.
Hubs laughed.
"Could you mow the lawn?"  She was obviously serious about this.
Hubs was confused, no doubt.  He gave a quizzical look and stumbled just a bit before rebounding completely, "Sure... I'm here to work... afterall..."
The next morning, Hubs was up bright and early, making perfectly straight lines in the grass, back and forth, back and forth.  He came in smelling like grass and sweat and man.  I remember giving him a hug right then and there in the middle of the kitchen, thinking how sweet he was to mow the lawn of a woman who's daughter he barely knew.
And I thought, "I hope this man is around to mow the lawn for the rest of my life."
That's why when Hubs offered to mow my mom's lawn this week, I couldn't help but follow him out and watch as he mowed- cutting perfectly straight lines, back and forth.  He gave me a small, boyfish wave that reminded me so much of that summer morning two years ago when I first fell in love.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Why do people cheat?

It's a sick, sick world we live in, folks.

By now, most have you have probably heard about the whole "Kristen Stewart cheated on Robert Pattinson" debacle.  Most likely you don't care.  After all, if you're anything like me, you probably think Kristin Stewart is an insult to the craft of acting and Stephanie Meyer a poor excuse for a writer.  If you disagree, you might have stumbled upon the wrong blog entirely.

A quick run down on the cheating tragedy for those of you who have been living in a cave the past two weeks:
1.  Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson starred in the infamous Twilight movies together.
2.  They are dating in real life and have been for three years.
3.  They were very much so "in love."
4.  Kristen Stewart was seen kissing another man- a man who was the director for her movie, Snow White and the Huntsman and a man who is married with two kids.  The two were reportedly having an affair.
5.  Did I mention the dude has two kids?
6.  Did I mention his wife is a supermodel?
7.  Did I mention he's twice Stewart's age?
8.  Stewart confessed and apologized to Pattinson, begging for forgiveness.
9.  Stewart issued a public apology for the scandal.
10. Stewart is currently trying to convince Pattinson to give her another chance.

Most likely you could't care less about all this hooplah.  Neither could I until I read an interesting article in People magazine while perusing casually around the grocery store.  Given your reaction to my confession of not always returning my grocery cart, I am guessing you readers are going to be armed with machetes, ready to tear Stewart to pieces for this sin.

Before you begin digging at her flesh, I have a few questions.  This post is not designed to be judgmental in nature, none of this, "She's the whore of all the earth!" or "How could she?!?" crapola.  We all know that cheating is wrong and we don't need countless blog commenters to point that out.  I guess what I want to know is why.  Why do people cheat?  It is something that I completely don't understand.  Maybe this is my naivete speaking, but if you don't want to be in a committed relationship, don't be in one.  If you do, do.  But decide one way or the other.  No one forces you in.  No one forces you to stay.

Stewart chose to be in a relationship with Pattinson.  If she was unhappy in the relationship then it would have been right to end it before getting involved with someone else.  I just don't understand how you could purposely hurt someone that you care about and who obviously cares about you so deeply.  In her public apology, Stewart stated she had "jeopardized the most important thing in my life, the person I love and respect the most, Rob.  I love him, I love him, I'm so sorry."

Then why did she do it?!?

And that's where I just don't get it.

You don't do that to someone you love.

If I have enough self control to pull myself out of bed every morning at 5:45, then certainly this chick can have enough self control to remember which guy she is kissing, right?

I would love comments or perspectives.  I have long been fascinated by scandals of this nature- mostly because I don't understand them one bit.  What is the motive for someone to do that?  How does someone let that happen?  Is it due to insecurities or vulnerabilities in their own lives?  Or just selfishness?

Ready with your stones of judgment, readers?

and..... THROW!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

The ever important shopping cart debate

Why hello there.

If you are visiting from Neely's blog today, an extra special welcome!  I'm so happy you decided to stop on by!  I'll give you the uber quick run down so that you know right away if you are interesting in sticking around or if you're going to fly the coop.

The name is Bonnie.  I write and sometimes I get in trouble for what I write, but that's just the way the cookie crumbles.  The husband's name is Greg and I've been told I would be a fool for letting the internet Gods know my husband's name because now they can steal our identities and invade our home, GASP!  Therefore, to protect us from cyber devils and because it seems somehow hip I have named him Hubs.  I pride myself on originality.

This is me when I'm trying to be cute and sexy.

This is me when I dress up as Voldemort for midnight Harry Potter premieres.
Personally, I think I am quite irresistible in both forms.

If you are still interested in me, (oh this sounds so romantic!) you have three options from here.

Option #1: You may read this post which will give you a very personal, loving tour of the blog.  There you'll find a guide of the greatest posts- the romantic ones, the ones about bratty teenagers, and even the scandalous ones.
Option #2:  You may check out my top ten most popular posts over there on the right sidebar.  They're not necessarily my favorites, but they're the readers' favorites.  Notice that half of them are perverted, and that says a lot about my readers, doesn't it?
Option #3:  Keep reading where you will find a weird confessional about me and shopping carts and then be allowed to give your opinion.

Really, you can't go wrong!

Now, for weird confessional time.  I am going to write about a trip to the grocery store, but I'm a tad nervous because last time I wrote about the grocery store, I was torn apart by both friends and enemies.  I confessed that I had parked in a free handicapped spot, ran in lightening quick, and was out of the store in less than 3 minutes flat.  No harm no foul.

Or so I thought.

The replies I received were phenomenal- straight up unbelievable, actually.  Responses varied from outrage to indifference to thinking I was the scum of the Earth to applauding my openness.

I learned my lesson from the incident and you will all be very happy to hear that since then I have been 100% handicapped parking free.  I'm clean!

And now I am here with another grocery store confessional-  get your tip typing fingers ready because you are going to have to share your opinion on this one!

Saturday night I was stopping by the grocery store for usual Saturday night staples.  On my way in I passed an employee who seemed to be in a disgruntled mood.  You know when you're walking real fast and you kind of cut someone off, but you don't realize until after?  That's what I did to this dude.  I don't think I would have noticed at all had he not yelled after me, "After you, ma'am!" in a snooty little voice that was dripping with sarcasm.

I felt bad for the guy.  I always feel bad for people who have to work on Saturday nights.  I spent many a Saturday night inside the prison bars of Sizzler, so I know how bad it sucks.  I also felt bad because this guy was in his mid 40s.  Life deals us all different hands, but when I see a man in his mid 40s working at the grocery store, I figure he wasn't dealt very fairly.  So I tried to smile back, shrug it off, and act like I didn't mind his rude remark.

Later, loading the groceries into the car, I noticed the guy was gathering up shopping carts.  I carefully placed mine to the side, cognizant to not block any of the perfectly good parking spots. As I was doing this, the man emphatically pointed to the cart return and then yelled out to me from across the parking lot, "The carts go over here, MA'AM!"
Emphasis on Ma'am.
As if the dude was mocking me.
As if he didn't think I was deserving of the title "ma'am" at all.
Oh, I felt the sting.

Naturally, I chose to do what I do best.  I ran away.  I acted like I didn't hear him, left the cart as it was, and drove away without looking at the man.  I guess in a way I felt embarrassed- as if this guy had pegged me to be some kind of grocery store demon who purposely made his life into an endless hell when really I was just grabbing some grub.  I couldn't quite shake the feeling all the way home that what I had done was wrong.

I'll admit this, I have never gone out of my way to return carts.  As far as I see it, the work of the employees is built into the cost of groceries.  When I buy my groceries, I am not only paying for the food, but for the cashier, the A/C inside the grocery store, and yes, even the man who fetches my wandering shopping cart.  If there were cheaper groceries where it was required you return your own shopping cart, I'd be all about it.  But whereas this man who retrieves shopping carts exists, I feel like it is in my best interest to use him.

And now.  Spill your guts.


Or disagree?

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Monday, August 20, 2012

A Baby named Bonnie and a Woman named Gay- What is going on in the world?!?


Hubs wants a baby.


How does a girl respond when her sweet red headed Hubs is practically on his knees begging for a baby?!?  I'll tell you what she should NOT do.  Bring around two week old babies that are sweeter than heaven and smell like cotton candy in a blanket.  No.  She should not do that.

This is Baby Bonnie.  The babe that exited my best friend's womb a mere two weeks ago.  She's cuter than all get out and has Hubs hank-hank-hankering for a babe of his own.

I've been brainstorming ways to convince Hubs that he is by no means ready for a baby.  Doesn't he realize what this means?!?!  No summer days filled with volleyball and water parks.  No sleeping in on weekends.  No easy breezy vacations whenever the mood strikes us.  But Hubs is adamant on this one.  The boy wants a baby.

Can you help a girl out?!?

While I'm off contemplating ways to convince Hubs it is not yet baby time, I've got a special treat for you.  I met Gay in blogland this summer and have loved every interaction I've had with her since.  The woman is hilarious and her guest post on creative ways to discipline her kids is pure genius.  It almost makes me want to have kids right now so I can try out her discipline methods myself.


Here she is, take it away Gay!


You guys I kinda feel like a bit of a celebrity since I'm making a guest appearance on the blog of Miss Bonnie, a for real celebrity! Shout out to the Bon Bon for being awesome!

But since I'm no celebrity, I guess it's only necessary that I semi-introduce myself. My name is Gay.

For real.

Okay, I guess it's actually Gabrielle. But I full on go by Gay. Hence the name of my blog...

A Girl Named Gay.

And I'm the baby mama to 4 kids. Yes- 4 of them. Yes- that is a lot. No- I wouldn't recommend it. Just kidding just kidding!!!

Now before you get completely turned off thinking I'm an old, boring mom that does nothing but brag about my perfect angels who are better than yours, let me assure you that there's more to my LIFE- and therefore my blog- than just mama-ing it up! But today...I'm gonna tell you a bit about how being a mom can take me on some embarrassing/funny/humiliating/who-signed-me-up-for-this-anyway rides!

I'm doing the best I can at what I do. Aren't we all doing the best we can? And "the best I can" means...many moments of failure. But don't you worry...failure often times results in lots of pure comedic moments {at least after the fact, right?!!}

Let me give you an example.

I just might have a low threshold when it comes to things like whining and....being called a dummy. I quickly cave into the temptation to act very irrational.

This time the caving wasn't as quickly as it could have been. I mean, I went through a few valiant attempts of, "Ok, now can you say that again nicely?" and "Are you talking respectfully?" But come on, how many times are we gonna have the same conversation, kids? So when those didn't work, I was then ready to cave.

A millisecond before I went into default cave mode- full out yelling- it occurred to me that this would be a perfect instance to employ the "element of surprise attack" to get some attention. One tactic in this category being to abruptly slam on the brakes, a silent gesture that demands the kids' attention and they know I mean BUSINESS. Feel free to add it to your bag of tricks.

So I go on ahead and give a nice, abrupt POUND on the brakes....

My smile spreads as I'm already anticipating the known victory--

When all of a sudden Kaia's car seat comes flying forward, only to be stopped by the back of my seat. Really? Really?


And the kids are all, "Mom, why did you do that to Kaia?", each word whined and swayed dramatically. This might be a good time to inform you that Kaia is our baby girl who has three older brothers. And these older brothers are OBSESSED with her. Protective to the max.

So Kaia's screaming, the kids are denying any involvement in the mishap and wondering why I'm trying to kill their little sister, and I'm rapidly pulling over to the side of the road.

With a click of a button, I open Kaia's door to console a broken-hearted baby girl who hasn't done a thing wrong, but make no mistake, her feelings are HURT...even if it was an accident. I'm simultaneously telling the kids they better pull their crap together and that NO, I am not a dummy despite the most recent act which may have argued otherwise and that any more of this non-sense and they would be walking their sorry booties home. That's right. All two blocks of it, they would WALK home.

Mid lecture, I feel someone creeping on my back side and turn around only to find....the parking police....staring at me. What the....

"Ummmm, you're parked in the red. What are you doing?"

I get as snotty and hard core as a white girl in the Palisades can and I'm all, "I'm taking care of my family." Kinda embarrassing, but I probably subconsciously accompanied those little words with the head bob and all.

She's like, "Yes, but you're parked in the red...."

Does she seriously not know I just about killed my daughter and the act of offense that she's concerned with is that I am PULLED OVER-- not parked-- in the red?

"I know. I am trying to take care of my family. Believe me, we're not hanging out here....And I'm not PARKED."

Dang it, I kind of hate to admit that I have a bit of disdain for parking attendants. I just can't shake the notion that it takes a certain kind to have a job where you walk around placing parking tickets for 8 hours a day. But I'm working on it....

Anyway, she gets the point and escapes her own temptation to cave and give me a ticket. "Well, you need to move asap."

I tell her I'm on my way. I get in the car, and I'll tell you what, those kids of mine are all getting buckled and zipping their lips and have done pulled their crap together.

And it had nothing to do with my surprise-attack-I-mean-business move.

It had nothing to do with their fear of losing their little sister.

It had nothing to do with me threatening to make them walk home.

I have a feeling it had EVERYTHING to do with that little parking cop walking up and scaring the crap out of them with her mere presence.

Apparently I need to wear a beige shirt and put little orange lights on top of my car to put an ounce of fear into these kids of mine. A sad day when you realize a dang rent-a-cop gets more respect from your own kids than you do!

This is just a teeny example of my LIFE going awry! I'd love for you to stop by and love, laugh, and learn with me!

shirtless gang? and this is what I'm facing in my life, friends. ps can you tell which kid isn't mine?!!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

One Big Happy Mormon Family

My family is dying to get on my blog.

This weekend we had a big get together with my mom's side of the family up at our cabin.  Anytime I see my cousins, aunts, second cousins once removed, etc, because that's the way it rolls in a Mormon family, they all want to know when I am going to write about them on my blog.  

I don't really know how to reply to that.  I mean, usually the people I write about are either students who don't wear pants to class, old men who give me the stare down for parking handicapped or demonic Korean roommates who I would like to erase from my memory completely.  I guess I just don't feel the urge to write about my well behaved students or the pleasant conversations with the bank teller or even about my plethora of cousins who are all very very nice.  

So I guess it's time I officially let you know.

I have a plethora of cousins who are all very very nice.

Except for Reeder because he purposely  popped my water balloon during the balloon toss and you better believe I'm still holding on to that one.

We partied at the cabin this weekend and I enjoyed every second of it.  Look at us below throwing water balloons.  Doesn't that just look like a hoot and a holler?!?

Trying to think of something witty to say here to make fun of Marianne, but it's just not coming.  Marianne, you look like a dork and now the whole world can see.  MWAHAHAHA!

Who's that spiffy looking chick on the end?  Gosh, she sure looks like a gal who can toss a water balloon!

If you've heard one thing about Mormons it's probably that we like to have truckloads of kids.  I'll let the pictures above do the talking.

The majority of the family gathered in the front room for a little family trivia.  Yes, we have family trivia games because we are that awesome.  When I pulled out my camera, my aunt declared with boundless excitement, "Oh my gosh!  You guys!  We're going to be on Bonnie's blog!"

Yep, Aunt Wendy.  This is it.  You're on the blog.  Now you better comment.

This is my cousin, Marianne.  She's 21 and smoking hot and in the market for a Hubs of her own.  Since my own little sister, Mary, ditched me for Argentina I hang out with Marianne at family events.  I forced her into driving down with me (Hubs had rehearsal all weekend:  R.I.P. Hubs) and playing endless rounds of board games, ping pong, and tennis with me.  I even convinced her to share a bed with me.  And she did! Sucker!

Tangent:  Is it an insult to Hubs if I admit that without him I had the best night of sleep that I've had in months?    Something about being in the basement of a cabin in the mountain... nice and cold with mounds of blankets on top.  I was cozy and cuddly and not overheated one bit.  My burning hot coals for feet didn't wake me up once.  Not once!  Please don't tell Hubs how well I slept.  He can never sleep well when we're apart and I wouldn't want him to know that while he was tossing and turning I was sleeping like a freaking baby.

I pretty much adore Marianne.  She's funny and nice and confident and all the things that you would hope that you are.  Plus she laughs all the time and doesn't everyone love someone who laughs all the time?  Also she's paying me to say all of this stuff about her.

I kid. I kid.

But seriously, Marianne, if you want to buy me lunch sometime, I'm cool with that.

And Marissa, if you're somewhere out there in DenverLand, we missed you.  A lot.

And that's a wrap.

Now, family, you have all made the blog, and will you continue to let me blog about stupid students and crazy dinner guests in peace?!?!?