Eating While Texting…That’s Dangerous!

Of course driving and texting is a deadly combination. But texting tragedies don’t just happen on our highways and dirt roads.

We are  surrounded by texting fools who are putting us all in harms way! And sometimes we are the fools.

Last week I made the mistake of trying to text with my left hand while I was eating a salad with my right. I stabbed myself in the face with a fork. Not only was it embarrassing, it really hurt and I got Ranch Dressing all over my shirt.

We must all be careful in Wal-Mart and K-Mart now. Crazy kids and soccer moms stare at their phones, texting their bffs and moving like zombies. They inadvertently run over old ladies and small children. They are so engrossed in their texting they don’t even feel the cart as it bumps over the flailing arms and legs.

And of course the newest danger in the gym…idiots who try texting while running on the treadmill. Runners loose their balance and footing while texting “LOL” to their super hot girlfriend. In a split second tragedy strikes. Runner Dude flies off the back of the treadmill. New Balance running shoes sail across the room and hit the people on the elliptical. His phone crashes to the floor, the battery pops out and all communication is lost.

Texting is a serious threat to us all. It’s a cruel world so be careful out there.

Talk to me!  leave a comment or e-mail me at hampoland@gmail.com, just don’t text me. I care about you too much for that.

 

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Friday Night American Warriors

It’s just Wednesday but I’m already thinking about this weekend. I’m starting to twitch.The Fountain Lake Cobra football team is in the semi-finals.  They weren’t supposed to be. I want to thank them for thrilling me all season.

Friday mornings…are  awesome.On Friday mornings when I drive around the school I get to see all the senior high players in their big purple jerseys. They stand together, they swagger together. The girls bump up against them and everybody laughs.

If it’s a home game the colossal lights will be turned on in the afternoon and the field will glow as the sun sets. School busses from other towns will roll onto campus. They are strangers and they don’t wear purple. The stadium is beautiful and pristine, waiting for the Friday night warriors.

 Most of our boys are sweet guys, they hug their moms and their mom’s friends. They throw footballs at the little boys who wear jerseys on Fridays too, hoping they will some day be able to take the field when the stands are packed and the home crowd cheers and rings cowbells. Alumni in skinny jeans and hightops and camo, faded overalls and ball caps line up, shoulder to shoulder to cheer.

The Cobra players are all just teen-age boys, all on the verge of becoming men, taking care of business, getting a job done, for their school, for their fans and for a tiny Arkansas community built around the purple and gold Cobras.

No matter what happens this weekend the Cobra football team has given us  all so much this season. They have played  hard, they have come from behind and they never quit in the 4th quarter. The boys have made everyone in the community proud to say we are from Fountain Lake.

*Please write me at hampoland@gmail.com or leave a comment. That makes my day!  This story is a re-write from earlier in the season.

 

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Why That Boy Acts Like A Boy

I recently read a blog entitled ”Why Our Sons Wear Pink”.  A mom explained why she encourages her sons to be sensitive and gentle. She thinks people like boys who are rough and jock like.  But I think things are going in the opposite direction.

 A lot of folks get mad because little boys act like little boys. They are too rough, too tough and too violent. And it’s not politically correct.

But boys are boys and girls are girls. We don’t get mad at little girls for being too “girly” . We don’t get mad at girls for wearing pink and taking care of their baby dolls. We don’t fuss at them for being too sweet or too nurturing.

But boys take a beating for being too aggressive and too violent, for pretending to shoot things and beat up dudes. I love it when my nine year old plays in his room, when he draws and listens to music. But i try to be patient when he’s a screaming, hollering crazy guy running around in the yard with his bb gun and jumping off the playhouse onto the trampoline with a foam sword.

 I’m the first parent to jump into a hot messy situation about a kid that’s a bully or too aggressive. When that happens I start calling parents and principals. I hang out on the playground. And I don’t let my kids play violent video games.

But boys and men were were made to be hunters and protectors. Girls were designed to take care of their young. Sometimes the boys have to take care of the babies and the girls have to go hunt down dinner, so a person who can do both is invaluable. But for the most part that’s how humans were designed. Seahorses and birds are different but we are humans. (I know I break the rules I’m reciting…I’ve been involved in Martial Arts for years and love boxing, but taking care of my kids is the most important thing I do.)

I agree we have to encourage our boys to be sensitive and compassionate. We must teach them to respect everybody, not just the alpha males.  Parents  need to encourage boys to appreciate the arts, music and literature. But as a society we need to stop blasting our boys for being boys. 

My oldest son, Jack is 24 years old.  When he was born I was a very tan hippie chick who hated guns.  I wouldn’t let Jack play with guns…ever.  So the boy turned everything, from Legos to bannanas, into a gun. My daughter, Mary, who is 16 months younger had absolutely no use or interest in guns.

Parents, this is on you, insist and encourage you boys be respectful and kind but don’t beat them up if they want to sword fight, wrestle, and hunt down bad guys. Let those boys be boys.

*Important Note: If your child is gay, understand God made him that way and love him just the way he is. If you’re child is mean or a bully make him stop and don’t make excuses. Don’t use the line “he’s just being a boy” if he’s actually an obnoxious punk.

Tell me what you think, comment or write to me! Thanks, diana

hampoland@gmail.com

 

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I Want To Wear Scrubs To Work

Sometimes I want things that aren’t really good for me like movie theater popcorn and pie…lots of pie.

Right now I want a job that I can do in scrubs. Ten years ago scrubs were UGLY, but now, I see cute scrubs  and  tailored, http://www.blueskyscrubs.com/. So you don’t have to look like a piece of bubble gum rolling down the hall.

And now scrubs sets , have some serious style with crew neck, v-neck and fancy stitching on the pockets. Or I could go for the cutsie look with  patterns. Because I’ve seen Star Wars scrubs, Snoopy scrubs, it’s all out there.  I think I could pull off a pair of scrubs and still look reasonably hot.  The models on the web page look super cool, like they would go clubbing in scrubs.

But I know, deep down in my heart…scrubs would not be good for me or my career. If I could wear scrubs to work, I’d eat tacos and cheese dip for lunch everyday. I’d pull my hair back in a pony tail and cut down on the make up.  After a month “Scrub Diana” would be ”Dumpy Diana”.

So I’ll pass on the scrubs…but I will have another piece of pie, please.

 

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For The Mother With A Chubby Daughter

My daughter Mary is gorgeous, shiny, brilliant and thrilling. Growing up she was all those things and chubby. She was famous for snacking then leaving candy wrappers stuffed between the couch cushions.

Recently Mary sent me a college paper she wrote comparing the  dancer, Isadora Duncan and Marlyn Monroe. But the first paragraph was about Mary as a little girl. 

She wrote, “I knew  women throughout history had contributed in a variety of ways. I also knew I had never heard of an ugly woman doing great things. Aphrodite was the goddess of beauty and love, and those suffering from heartbreak would ask her for relief. In Africa, Cleopatra was a great beauty who held the power of her entire country and was a magnificent leader. Marie Antoinette was another woman I was fascinated with, at the time all I understood of her was that her beauty was so extraordinary she started wars and that she really liked cake.

However, my greatest love was not intelligent, fierce and determined like the others. My great love was Marilyn Monroe. She was delicate and feminine. She had the skin of a princess, with beautiful blond hair.

I was a chubby girl, with enormous knots in my hair, stirrups on the bottom of my grubby spandex pants and a surprising amount of hair on my legs for a ten year old.”

She also wrote, “I knew I could have looked like them if I hadn’t spent all my time watching Murder She Wrote and pretending to go to Hogwarts…..”

Now, after all these years, I know what was going through her beautiful brain.

Mary was always gorgeous. And she was so funny as a little girl, I sometimes had to pull the car off the road because I couldn’t stop laughing.

But she was a little chubby. And back then, Mary couldn’t write very well.  Boy, things have changed.

I’d love to hear from you! Comment or write to me a hampoland@gmail.com

 

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Trust Your Gut…Maybe The Mom Is A Crack Head

So,  many parents think I’m way too easy going and liberal. Others, think I’m a Nazi because I insist on kids being respectful.

But parents…when you are sending your child to some body’s house….trust your gut. Listen to your instincts. Be quiet and let that little voice in your heart speak up. Often times that’s the only thing protecting your child from something wicked.

My son, who is eight, has a new friend, Robert. He’s a little guy with pretty eyes. Robert lives with his older brother and sister, his mom and Joe, his mom’s boyfriend and three dogs.

The first time I picked Robert up  I tried to keep an open mind. But thehouse, which is a mile from any other home, was pretty rough.
I made arrangements to pick up Robert with Joe, the mom’s boyfriend. Joe was really young and tatted up, but seemed like a nice guy. He asked the right questions. “When will he be home” and “Will you feed him dinner”. The kid was lucky to have Joe, at least he was interested in the boy.

At some point during the afternoon, I asked little Robert what his mom did for a living and he said, “She mostly sleeps.” (red flag?)

As Robert was leaving, my son asked if he could give his new buddy some toys.
“Why?”
“Because Robert’s only toy is a big Freddy Kruger doll”. (He made a face that said,’pretty gross, right?’)
“Go get some toys and put them in a bag guys.” I was horrified.
The two boys came out of the room ten minutes latter with a bag full of Hot Wheels, a Nerf Gun, a plastic tank and a harmonica.

Robert gave my son a hug then said to me, “At Christmas I get toys and cool stuff from the church.”

“What church do you go to?”

“We don’t go to church, but they give us presents every Christmas. ”

Over the last three weeks Robert has come to our house four or five times. He plays, they have fun. He eats a lot and I’m working on his manners. I still haven’t  talked to or seen his mom. I always make arrangements through Joe, “the mom’s boyfriend.”

Today we picked  Robert  again. Joe “the mom’s boyfriend,” asked if Justin, the older brother could come to our house too.

Sure.

Justin hung out at our house with Robert for a few hours. During the day he told us his mom had lots of boyfriends but only Joe right now.  And neither one of them had jobs. The ultimate red flag slapped me in the face. If folks don’t have jobs, what do they do during the day? How do they make money to pay for tattoos andFreddy Kruger dolls?

I have absolutely no proof that there is anything illegal going on. I have no reason to think they are doing anything  wrong.

 But I do.

So, I told my son he must not ask to spend time at their house because I’ll say no, every time. I don’t want him to embarrass the boys.

My gut tells me there is something weird going on in that house. Both the boys always, always ask if they can spend the night. They don’t want to go home. After almost a month, I still haven’t met the mom, only  the mom’s boyfriend. But the boys tell me she is home all the time.

What should I do? 

 I know I have to keep helping the boys so I invite them over and try to teach them what I can. They like going to church with us. They like sitting down for dinner, playing board games and football.  When I give them clothes that don’t fit my kid, they try them on and grin and say thank you.

What should I do? Trust my gut, and start talking to peole. The right people. As a parent the most important thing I have to do is take care of my kids and their friends, and their friends.

 

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A Water Park Christmas!

Dear Husband and Children,

Next Christmas I think I want to take a vacation instead of hanging out at the house. I think I want to go to one of those indoor water parks in Texas.  I don’t really like Texas that much because I’m from Arkansas and they think they are all that, but holy cow, I love water parks!

This summer I was the only middle aged woman in line for the Boogie Board surfing ride. I even brought an extra tee-shirt because I knew the waves can rip your swimming suit off and nobody wants a middle aged flasher at a water park. Yikes.

Ok family, so this place called Greatwolf has a package deal. We can get a room for two adults and two kids and two day passes to the FREAKIN’ AWESOME INDOOR WATERPARK FROM HELL for right around $550. I want to go. I love the toilet bowl rides, and the tubes that can hold all four of us at once.

Alex loves the slow float down a river rides, but I’m not crazy about those. I think kids pee in the water if the ride is slow or the water isn’t frigid. There’s no time to pee on the action rides.

So, that’s my plan for next Christmas…a trip that includes white caps and a hotel room. I’ll see you there.

Love,
Your Momma

 

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Giant Men and Their Huge Pants

I just read a couple of articles about the size of human beings. We are getting so much bigger and at ridiculous rate.

One hundred years ago the average dude was 5’6-5’7 and 155 pounds. Now our men average 5’10 and weigh in at around 175 pounds (obviously they are not including the weight the men in Wal-Marts throughout the South). Petty soon all the guys are going need those big and tall jeans  from big and tell men shops. And then we won’t have any jockeys. 

I remember just twenty years ago finding a store for big men was really hard. Now, they have their own racks of stuff , right next to the normal clothes.

I just think it’s crazy that we are getting so much bigger. What if other animals were increasing in size at the same rate? House cats would be the size of Great Danes and hamsters might be as big as fat bunnies. We wouldn’t be able to keep them in an aquarium with a wheel!

Here’s part 2 of the weirdness.  We are all getting bigger but our eyesight is getting worse. Bad eye site is generally genetic so we keep passing down our squinty eyes to our kids. In the end we’ll just be huge humans, fumbling around looking for our glasses and tripping over our gigantic cats.

 

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A Scathing Eggie Review

I bought the Eggies at Wal-mart. I was so excited and I was such a dooof. “No more peeling hard boiled eggs!” I hate peeling eggs, in fact sometimes I lose my temper while peeling and end up throwing eggs. But love eating them. The Eggie was going to make my life better. The box said so. And I could season eggs before cooking them, how great does that sound!?

Well, you are probably n0t going to be surprised when I tell you the Eggies SUCKS! Seriously, it’s one of the worst “as seen on tv” things I’ve ever fallen for.” (When am I going to stop falling for these things? Yikes. I’m actually pretty smart.)

First of all the Eggie is kind of complicated but an egg in a shell is not. There are four pieces you have to screw together after coating the inside with oil every time you use them.  But I did it, greased up my Eggies, screwed all the piece together then cracked an egg and tried to pour it into the Eggie. I missed and the raw egg spread across the counter.  Humm, Then I pushed the egg into a coffee cup and successfully poured it into the Eggie.  I repeated this process three times. Then I added all kinds of spices to one of the eggs and stirred it gently.

I was concerned because the spices and yolks were all floating to the surface.  Still I put the Eggies in my pot of water, watched and waited.  The strange thing was cooking the eggs in the Eggies took a long time, longer than normal eggs.Finally, I removed all four eggs from the water and let them cool. Things weren’t looking good still I pushed on.

After the eggs cooked then cooled, I unscrewed the Eggies and plopped an egg out. It was absolutely flat on top, not shaped like an egg at all. There’s no way I could make devil eggs out of them. And the outside was greasy and slippery.  I opened the rest and they were the same, except for the one with the spices. It looked diseased.  All the black spices were on the flat side. It was pretty gross looking.

I showed the plate of oily eggs to my husband, who is a chef. 

 ”They look like boobs covered in baby oil” he laughed.

He was right.

So, it’s back to peeling eggs the old fashioned way.  Tap tap tap, peel peel peel.

Oh well, I think I can fill each Eggie with tinsel and use them as Christmas ornaments this year. That will be kind of pretty.

 

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Good Manners…A Competitive Sport

If you want to teach little kids anything, you have to be tricky, all the  time. This is especially true if  you want to teach kids, who don’t belong to you, how to act.

I had three little boys in the back seat of my car, squirming like puppies. One kid was mine, one hangs at our house a lot, the other was a new addition. I like this new boy but he doesn’t have bad manners. He’s got NO MANNERS.

“No Manners”, means I can’t get mad at him right away.” No Manners” means nobody in his life ever insisted he act right. Nobody, including his parents, ever looked at him crossed eyed until he said “thank you” or “yes ma’am”. “No Manners” means I have to explain to him how I expect him to act at our house for a couple of weeks before I can get mad at him for being rude.

So, I’ve got three smelly eight year olds in the back seat, rolling and laughing.

“Everybody got their seatbelt on?” I holler.
‘Yes ma’am” I hear from two boys.
“How you doing Joey? You all belted up?” I ask of the third boy, who has “No Manners”.
“Yeah.” he says.
I watch my kid elbow Joey but he doesn’t get it and I realize I have to try a different tact.
“You ready for some food, Jacob?” I ask of the kid that stays at our house all the time.
“Yes ma’am!” he shouts like a tiny blonde Marine.
“Good answer,Jacob!” I shout and stick my hand into the back seat for a high five.
“You guys ready for some food and football?” I yell at them all.
“”Yes ma’am!” my son and Jacob shout, competitively, trying to outdo each other. And then they laugh.
I say, “I’m pretty sure Jacob won that time, Son,”  Jacob does a little hapy dance in the back seat.
Our new boy watched Jacob and my kid, he was figuring out what was going on, It was the Good MANNERS GAME It’s a competitive sport. He wants to figure out how to win. That means he’s interested and that means I can train him.

I know that sounds weird, that I would try to train a rough cut little boy to have better manners, like a dog or a boxer.  But as the great MMA coach Danny Dring says, “You have to work with what you got.”

What have I got, a little boy with terrible manners, but I still like him.  The key is he’s a little boy. That means he’s competitive and likes to be the winner. If having good manners means he’s a winner, he’ll yell “Yes ma’am” in a heart beat.  Little girls like being winners but they really like the praise.  

At the end of the day Joey’s manners were much better, mainly because he wanted to beat the other boys. But even when we were alone, in a C Store and I asked him if his drink was cold he said, “yeah,” then changed it to “yes Ma’am”. I gave him a thumbs up and he grinned. Everybody likes to win.

 

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