What She Has Typed Will be a Window into Her Madness

A little backstory on the featured image:

It was taken when our daughter was no more than a year old. She was not an easy first baby by any means. After her birth I had to have several surgeries to ‘put Humpty Dumpty together again’. Combine my bedraggled physical state with my deteriorated mental state due to the fact that she never slept….EVER and you will understand why images of the Simpson’s Tree House of Horror episode where Homer turns into the character from the ‘Sheeeening’ (Shhh… do you wanna get sued!?) came into my head while I was cleaning up from bath time. In case you are lost and have no idea which episode I’m referring to please click on the link below to enjoy a refresher.

Image courtesy of YouTube

https://youtu.be/Oiyl-EtGeVk (Yep, this link….click here for funny)

Image courtesy of Simpsons Wiki Fandom

Cheers!

Love,

Marie

My Top Ten Quotes from the Movie National Lampoons Summer Vacation

Is your Holiday Road full of potholes this summer? Here’s some of the best quotes from National Lampoons Summer Vacation to help you laugh them off.

1 ) “I’m so hungry I could eat a sandwich from a gas station.”

Image courtesy of Get Yarn

2) Walleyworld guard: “Has your father ever killed anyone?” Rusty: “Just a dog. Oh, and my Aunt Edna.”

Image courtesy of YouTube

3) Ellen: “We can’t leave her on the patio!” Clark: “Would you rather I slipped her in the night deposit box at the funeral home?”

Image courtesy of Get Yarn

4) Walleyworld guard: “That’s not a real gun, is it Clark?” Clark: “Are you kidding? This is a Magnum P.I.!”

Image courtesy of Get Yarn

5) “It’s living history Ellen. But if you’d rather see your cousins. Personally, I’d rather see a pile of mud than Eddie.”

Image courtesy of Yarn

6) “We pass a damn gas station every hundred yards for a thousand miles, but when you really need one, you wind up walking your ass off. This is no way to run a dessert!”

Image courtesy of The Daily Dot

7) “I don’t know why they call this stuff Hamburger Helper, it does just fine by itself.”

Image courtesy of Reddit

8) “I was speeding. I was driving like a maniac. We can all be grateful to this man for stopping us.”

Image courtesy of YouTube

9) “Everybody in the car. Boat leaves in two minutes…or perhaps you don’t wanna see the second largest ball of twine on the face of the earth, which is only four short hours away?”

Image courtesy of Get Yarn

10) Ellen: “I honestly don’t think you’re going to find the Grand Canyon on this road.” Clark: “Jesus, it’s only the biggest damn hole in the world.” Edna: “Clark, watch your language!” Clark: “Make that the second biggest.”

Image courtesy of Sunny 107.9

Hope these classic 80’s quotes helped you get through all the bumps in your Holiday Road today!

Cheers!

Love,

Marie

Side Note: Featured image courtesy of ImDb.

My Top Ten Quotes from The Great Outdoors

Who doesn’t love and remember that great John Candy summer mishap comedy The Great Outdoors? If your summer vacation is racking up more mishaps than fond family memories, then let’s relive this eighties classic together with my ten favorite quotes!

1: “Hotdogs! You know what they make those things out of, Chet? You know? Lips and assholes!”

Image courtesy of YouTube

2: “Look at the size of the maggots on that meat!”

Image courtesy of Yarn

3: Kate: “It touched me!” Roman: “It’s been touching you for twelve years, you never freak!”

Image courtesy of Yarn

4: Chet: “…what old man wouldn’t want a little girl kissing his cheek?” Bartender: “A dead one.”

Image courtesy of Get Yarn

5: “Why don’t you go find yourself a spin cycle!”

Image courtesy of Get Yarn

6: “If I can get a dessert down him, think you can throw in a couple of Paul Bunyan hats for the kids?”

Image courtesy of Totally 80’s

7:”All kids like bugs…especially fireflies; their butts light up!”

Image courtesy of Get Yarn

8: Roman: “These are the biggest worms I’ve ever encountered.” Chet: “They’re not worms, they’re leeches.”

Image courtesy of Facebook

9: Buck: “That’s six hotdogs dad.” Chet: “It’s for everybody alright. And I’m hungry.”

Image courtesy of Get Yarn

10: Chet: “You Bastard! You Bastard!” Roman: “I think he’s saying go faster!”

Image courtesy of Yarn

Hope this helped you laugh your way out of a bad vacation, or simply just to start your day out right with a laugh!

Cheers!

Love,

Marie

You Might as Well be Walkin’ on the Sun

To give you some context, I took my kids to the Adler Planetarium the other night and we saw this sign in front of a big model of the sun. I told my kids it was good advice because the sun is super-hot. My four-year-old son, as usual, instantly ignored my warnings and touched the sun display just to call my bluff.

For some reason the lyrics from Smash Mouth’s song Walkin on the Sun won’t leave my head when I look at this photo, so I will post them here so they can get stuck in your head too….enjoy!

Lyrics

It ain’t no joke, I’d like to buy the world a toke
And teach the world to sing in perfect harmony
And teach the world to snuff the fires and the liars
Hey, I know it’s just a song but it’s spice for the recipe

This is a love attack, I know it went out but it’s back
It’s just like any fad, it retracts before impact
And just like fashion it’s a passion for the with it and hip
If you got the goods, they’ll come
And buy it just to stay in the clique

So don’t delay, act now supplies are running out
Allow if you’re still alive, six to eight years to arrive
And if you follow, there may be a tomorrow
But if the offer’s shunned, you might as well be walkin’ on the sun

25 years ago they broke out and they broke out
Recession, oppression together they toked
And they folked out with guitars around a bonfire
Just singin’ and clappin’ man what the hell happened

Then some were spellbound some were hellbound
Some they fell down and some got back up and
Fought back ‘gainst the melt down
And their kids were hippie chicks all hypocrites
Because fashion is smashin’ the true meaning of it

So don’t delay, act now supplies are running out
Allow if you’re still alive six to eight years to arrive
And if you follow, there may be a tomorrow
But if the offer’s shunned, you might as well be walkin’ on the sun

It ain’t no joke when a mama’s handkerchief is soaked
With her tears because her baby’s life has been revoked
The bond is broke up, so choke up and focus on the close up
Mr. Wizard can’t perform no godlike hocus-pocus

So don’t sit back, kick back and watch the world get bushwhacked
News at 10:00 your neighborhood is under attack
Put away the crack before the crack, puts you away
You need to be there when your baby’s old enough to relate (hey, hey)

So don’t delay, act now supplies are running out
Allow if you’re still alive six to eight years to arrive
And if you follow, there may be a tomorrow
But if the offer’s shunned, you might as well be walkin’ on the sun

You might as well be walkin’ on the sun
You might as well be walkin’ on the sun
You might as well be walkin’ on the sun
You might as well be walkin’ on the sun

Source: Musixmatch

Songwriters: Greg Camp / Steven Harwell / Paul Delisle / Kevin Iannello

Walkin’ on the Sun lyrics © Squish Moth Music, Sno Cone Music Publishing

https://www.google.com/search?q=walkin+on+the+sun+lyrics&oq=walkin+on+the+sun&aqs=edge.1.69i57j0i512l7j69i64.5686j0j4&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

Cheers!

Love,

Marie

Quoteworthy Quote

I’m currently reading the book This is Happiness by: Niall Williams. So far, I would highly recommend it if you are interested in all things Irish and Ireland or if you have ever wondered at the intricacies of small rural village life. Hidden inside the opening pages I found the above quote, smiled, and decided to share its sage and timeless advice with you today. Hope it helps you conquer any ‘squalls’ that come your way! Got any other great quotes you would like to share? Please feel free to share them in the comments!

Cheers!

Love,

Marie

Relevance

Occasionally I flex my writing muscles by entering a short story contest. Here is my latest submission to a Reedsy weekly writing prompt. The challenge was to write a story in which a person feels increasingly irrelevant. I give you the short story- Relevance.

“Ir-rel-e-vant, adjective.  Meaning: not connected with or relevant to something,” mumbled Marie under her breath.  “I should get this printed on a t-shirt for myself.”

She blew the steam off her coffee before returning to her favorite pastime as of late- reading the dictionary quietly to herself before the kids woke up.  Prior to the virus she would have been up at four-thirty a.m., dressed at five, have the kids up and dressed by six, and out the door by six-thirty.  A quick and tidy drop off at daycare would be followed by eight hours at work.

 Real, professional, adult work.  Mentally stimulating and challenging activity in a healthcare environment.  As a physical therapist she felt like she was someone and was doing something to change the world for the better and to help people in need.  She felt strong, relevant, and worthy.  She was not a simple-minded housewife of the nineteen-twenties.  She could do all the cooking, cleaning, grocery shopping, and child care that they did PLUS work in a professional environment.  She felt like she was a well-respected rock star! 

Was her heart in it?  No. Had you asked her in her youth what she imagined she would be doing now she would have replied journalism or working as an author not her current role as a healthcare worker and a mother.  Worried parents had gently nudged her that perhaps ‘art’ would best be left as a hobby.  Her father reminded her that they do call them ‘starving’ artists for a reason.  Why don’t you try healthcare they persisted?  There’s great job security in that field.

They had been right of course.  Even though her studies had been half hearted she excelled at them.  Even though her self-doubt had been monumental during her first clinical rotation in pediatrics. Even though her deserted four-thirty a.m. commute to her third clinical rotation in the bitter cold and gale-force snow of February in Chicago had almost made her scrap the whole program.  Even though she was plagued with nightmares that she was incompetent right before graduation.  Even though most of her first year of work had been spent chanting quietly to her hyperventilating self in the back office, ‘I can do this.  No, I can’t.  Who do I think I am?  I don’t know what I’m doing at all!’

Even though after ten years those doubts would occasionally resurface into the form of the question ‘have, I ever actually helped anyone at all or were all those people going to get better anyway on their own?’  She could still hold her head up high because her career in health care had bought her fist home at twenty-six years old.  Her career had provided her with health insurance, food, and a new car when her old one was totaled in a car accident.  Her career allowed her to save for retirement with a 401K and allowed her to take vacations to Canada and Mexico.  Her career had paid for daycare and health insurance when her daughter was born.  When the burn out of bundled payments and new Medicare restrictions forced her to treat four to five patients at once she still fought valiantly through it.  Because she was needed.  She was someone.  She was here to help.

But then the virus came.  Quietly off in the distance.  Over there.  It won’t come here, surely!  But then it came.  “It can’t be that bad,” she had told a worried co-worker, “More people die of the flu every year than this thing.”

  But it was that bad.  More people did die.  The world shut down and she discovered who was ‘essential’ and who was not.  She was no longer ‘essential’.  For the first time in eleven years, she was jobless.  Meaningless.  Unimportant. Irrelevant.  Here she was, trapped in a house with two small children.  Then came the grief.  The crying.  The anger.  The stages of loss.  Could she drown them with work?  Let’s try. 

In four months, she tackled every home repair project that had been sitting on the back burner for years from painting closets to installing a rainwater drain in the front yard. 

“I’m still important,” she thought to herself.  “I’m still useful.  Look, see how many things I can fix around the house.  I’m working so hard; as hard as everyone else.  I’m still relevant!”

 But then all the house projects were done and she was left alone with two small children again.  She looked at herself in disgust.  She had used boxes of gold fish crackers and DVDs of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood on repeat to replace daycare while she simulated the stimulation of a ‘work’ environment.  Now what? 

Alcohol gave some relief, but the pain always came back worse when the buzz wore off.  The anger and frustration scared the kids.  They were getting anxious.  At first the lack of structure was fun.  Sleeping in, staying in PJ’s all day.  Eating whatever and watching TV, but now it was getting boring and mommy was no fun anymore.  They desperately needed to get back into a routine. 

Her depression was compounded by the fact that the more irrelevant she became the more relevant and essential her husband became.  He got raise after raise, promotion after promotion because he could now perform more duties and work more hours than he ever could before because now he had her to pick up the extra childcare duties.  She should have been thankful, relieved.  Because of him they would not starve.  Because of him they could still pay the mortgage.  Because of him they still had health insurance so that when they finally did get the virus, they could get medical care.  But without him she would have been powerless to provide those things herself because she was irrelevant. 

She slapped herself in the face one day. 

“Time to stop crying,” she stated.  If there was not going to be school or daycare then she would reinvent herself to be the best care taker and educator she could be.  She would turn her home into an awesome and stimulating day camp for her kids.  She read to them during every meal.  She taught her daughter how to tie her shoes, dress herself, and make her bed.  She potty trained her son in record time.  They learned about flowers in the back yard, made messes in the front yard with bubbles and chalk, flew kites in the field at the park, went on walks and hunted for animals and birds.  They did crafts and education activities that revolved around ‘theme-days’ to make learning less tedious.  They went on virtual tours of the Eifel Tower and made crepes.  They learned the Mexican hat dance and celebrated Cinco De Mayo with a homemade piñata. They took virtual ballet lessons, virtual zoo trips, and did virtual kids yoga sessions.  She reinvented Easter Egg hunts for every holiday to keep them busy since they could not see their cousins anymore.  She taught them to play soccer and baseball since the park district was closed.

Her spirits soared.  If she could do this for her kids, then maybe, just maybe this wasn’t the end of a meaningful, relevant, and essential career.  Maybe this could be the start of a something new for her too!  Memories of that old passion came back to her.  Maybe now was when she was meant to accomplish a lifelong goal and become a writer. She polished up all her old manuscripts and entered them in writing contest after writing contest.  She completed Self-authoring Suit to center herself and help establish her goals and time tables for completing them.  She taught herself blogging on WordPress and researched SEO online.  She started not one, but two blogs.  She submitted her fist manuscript for a children’s book- an idea that she and her daughter had created together!

Hope is a powerful drug. For a time, it allowed her to imagine that she was relevant again.  For a time, it appeared that she was actually accomplishing things again.  People where home and bored and looking for an outlet and they were using her blog!  Her family cheered her on with clicks and likes and comments.  Subscribers rolled in. 

But then the rejection letters came.    One cruel reality check informed her that Childrens’ books couldn’t be published without the insanely expensive services of professional illustrators.  Contest after contest deemed her unworthy of the title of ‘Published Author’.  Even worse were the contests that didn’t even bother to contact her with any feedback.  Then, despite all the tags and SEO key words her blog slowly plateaued.  Ad revenue halted at a paltry seven cents.  She was left wondering to herself if anyone even read what she had taken the time to write.  Probably not. Clearly what she had to say was non- essential.  Irrelevant. 

Things would change after the quarantine was over, right?  Her job would call her back, right?  Her kids would go back to day care, right?  Life would go back to normal and she would be relevant again, right?  No.  It would seem that the world situation had permanently changed.  Supply chains, shipping, and manufacturing had been tossed on their heads.  Cost of everything surged to unheard of highs.  She could no longer make enough money to pay for gas and daycare even if she had been able to ger her former position back. 

So here she was now, reading a dictionary definition that she would never have thought would apply to her in a million years- irrelevant.  A small cry from upstairs interrupted her caffeinated pity party.  Her four-year-old son was having a nightmare about not being able to eat blue ice cream.  She ran upstairs and scooped him into her lap and rocked him like she had when he was a baby.  His little hand closed on hers.  His warm tears dropped on her arm.  She felt his whole body relax into the comfort of hers.

Perhaps she wouldn’t have that t-shirt printed afterall. 

Hope you enjoyed it! Feel free to leave me comments and feedback- it’s how I grow as a writer.

Cheers!

Love,

Marie

Dude, It’s a Double Rainbow!

Look at all those colors man!

Saw this beautiful double rainbow in my backyard this summer and it brought to mind a hilarious old you tube clip of a guy (proooobbbaabbbllyy a little stoned) bantering on about a double rainbow. For those of you that have forgotten ‘double rainbow guy’ here’s a link to the video below.

https://youtu.be/OQSNhk5ICTI (It’s a double rainbow guy)

Cheers!

Love,

Marie

Leonardo Would be Proud

A little-known fact about me is that I used to write T-shirt quotes for a catalog called What On Earth. It was filled with the most bizarre merchandise but sadly, this suggestion didn’t make the cut. I still think it’s funny.

Cheers!

Love,

Marie

Gumballs and God

Needless to say, I was taken aback when I discovered this monk inside the plastic ‘egg’ that came out of a gumball machine. Perhaps it’s a sign?

Cheers!

Love,

Marie