About simplygiselle

I am at the point in my life where I am just trying to figure it all out. Fun vs responsibility, fitness vs relaxation, water vs wine, what the hell do I want to be when I grow up... it's all too overwhelming

19 Things your mom did back in the day or ‘how I survived my childhood’

Let’s be nostalgic for a few minutes shall we? Mom.me originally posted this list of 19 items that instantly brought me back to my childhood (good, bad, or indifferent)…

  1. Ride in a car without a seat belt. Yup. The shoulder strap keeping you from slamming your head against the glove compartment was mom’s arm that instantly stretched across the car not unlike the Stretch Armstrong toy. No matter how large the vehicle was, mom’s arm shot across you shoulder to shoulder.
  2. Style your hair with her spit. Yup. She had every ‘dippity do’ and extra strong Aquanet eating the ozone but her spit to keep my bangs out of my eyes was good enough for me.
  3. Put coke in my lunch box. Nope. We were not the high fa-luting type to afford Coke and didn’t have soda in the house until I was much older. We had powered milk; just add water (while the milk dust fills your nasal cavity and lungs). On special occasions we had Zarex syrup. A school lunchtime drink was using the dime in the foil in the lunchbox or mitten to pay for the 4 oz container of milk that, when finally opened, lunch period was over. The milk struggle was real.
  4. Send you to the store for bread. More like a pack of butts from the corner market. Society now frowns on the 8 yr old walking in alone and purchasing Virginia Slims.
  5. Tell you to walk to your friends house. Yup. Your friend list extended as far as you could walk-before the streetlights came on of course. For me, my shifty brothers stole a bike for me, painted it another color, and my ‘neighborhood of friends’ instantly expanded a few more streets away.
  6. Meet your date when they picked you up. Yup. The nervous sweating was not about actually going on the date, it was the 100 questions that he would be asked without even setting a foot in the door.
  7. Send you to the neighbors to borrow a cup of sugar. Yup. If you switch sugar with egg its right on the money. Lots of baking from scratch went on and to keep the household fed, the last of something was used the day before payday and the neighbors always helped each other.
  8. Talk to your neighbors. Yup. Not only talked to them but we were encouraged to visit. Hmmm maybe this was my mother’s way of giving herself some alone time under the guise of ‘saying hello to’ that old neighbor who could never remember who you were to begin with.
  9. Let you walk near a glass table. Well this one is not really fair we didn’t own one. I can say, however, that we did have a coffee table that I slammed my head on while I toddled around like a drunken sailor. She was kind enough to share that story with me later in life.
  10. Not answer the phone when away from their kids.Yup. How many times would I call to get permission to eat over my friends house and curiously no one would pick up the damn rotary phone. I know she is there! its dinnertime and she is cooking. WTH.
  11. Go to the pool without sunscreen. Yup. Sunscreen? Try lather up with baby oil to get that dark shiney glow! and not the pool but walk to the lake (another thing kids wouldn’t do these days; a two mile hike alone).
  12. Let the neighborhood teenager babysit. Nope. I had no need. On the very rare occasion my parents left the house, I had the pleasure of one or two of my three older brothers to beat me um, make sure I was quiet and put to bed on time. I may have been safer with Son of Sam.
  13. Let you eat your Halloween candy as soon as you came home. Yes and no. Although I was allotted my share of the booty, the parents had first dibs on everything dumped on the floor. I like to think of it as the ‘vig’ – house gets their cut right? Mom was big on Squirrels and Mary Janes – two things to completely rip your teeth out of your head. Mom was living on the edge.
  14. Leave you in the car while she ran in real quick. Well, here is the thing about this one. My mom learned the hard way to never do that again. She ‘ran into the store real quick’ only to return and find her daughter screaming blue murder because she decided to put her finger on the hot coiled cigarette lighter. The skin quickly bubbled up and to much of my surprise, I didn’t lose any feeling in the tip of that finger. Lesson learned mom, right?
  15. Let your friends pierce your ears. Nope. We went to Cherry and Webb were I chickened out in the seat and my mom had her’s done instead. So not a completely wasted trip.
  16. Let you sit behind the wheel of the car and pretend you were driving. Yup. We felt all grown up sitting in their lap and ‘steering’. Brittany Spears can attest to the harsh reality that this is a big ‘no no’ these days.
  17. Ride your bike without a helmet. Yup. Not only did I not have a helmet I was self taught and wrist guards would probably have been more helpful. I do have to throw out there that where I live, flipping your bike over and using the pedals to spin the wheels and pretend you were an ice cream sales person was reality. It is surprising to hear that some kids never did that. Brienne F. –  I am looking in your direction.
  18. Let you use a pair of scissors on your own. I cannot truthfully answer this. I can only remember using the rounded scissors growing up. Maybe we didn’t have any real scissors as it was too much of a temptation for my mother bringing up those three boys. I, of course, was a saint.
  19. Buy you candy cigarettes. Yup. Smoke’em if you got’em. Although I will admit actually inhaling the candy cigarette and choking on all the powder that is used to create the ‘smoke’. Whoops. Blow out not in. I needed the remedial class on smoking candy cigs apparently.

And there you have it. Have more that you want to share? Please do. It’s nice to know of other people’s childhood horror.

Mom and Me (high school) rocking the hair

Mom and Me (high school) rocking the hair

A silly moment in my day: stuck in an elevator

Heading down just a few flights in the elevator, the button lights go out and the elevator does the ‘bump’ that let’s you know something is not right. After pressing all the buttons to see if there was even the slightest possibility that the doors would open onto another floor, it is time to hit the HELP button.

The voice on the other end asks, “how can I help you?”

me: “I am stuck in an elevator”. voice: “where?” me: “gives street address”. voice: “well what is wrong?” me: “the doors wont open and the lights on the panel are out” voice: “did you try the open door button” me: “no, hold on” (damn it, the one button I didn’t try) me: “no not working”. voice: “ok we will send someone over”.

And then I think, well I am not hungry, don’t need the bathroom, so I am good for a while.

And then a knocking comes on the elevator door to which I respond “occupado” (you have to do it in a sing-songy voice to get the full effect)… and I hear chuckling on the other side of the door, who then says, “I know that’s why I am here”

Then we all lived happily ever after. The end.

Cold Sweat by Ezra Dyer

Brrr. Feel the chill? Winter is on its way. But don’t worry: There are tons of fun ways to enjoy the season and have a blast despite the sun being a cold dead orb that barely seems to struggle above the horizon before the wizened claw of frigid darkness once again tightens its bony grip upon the land. So don’t just huddle inside drinking cold Ruski vodka and eating your vitamin D pills—get out there and have a great time with these outdoor ideas that’ll turn your life into a winter fun-derland!

Snowshoeing. Snowshoeing is magical. Instead of laboriously slogging through deep powder, punching down and dragging your boots back to the surface with each punishing step, snowshoes allow you to glide gracefully across the surface. Oh, I’m sorry—those are cross-country skis. Snowshoes are giant baskets you strap to your feet, and wearing them is considered a sign of hypothermia-induced mental impairment. Snowshoeing is like trying to use an elliptical machine with both feet jammed into trash cans, or dancing a mambo in Satan’s clogs. It’s said that the Inuit have 100 words for snow and not one word for why anyone would wear snowshoes.

Sledding. In fifth grade, there was an eighth-grader who was kicking the little kids down the sledding hill before they could reach the top. So, as I climbed up near his boots, I reached out and wrapped him up, toppling him all the way down the hill and filling the pockets of his Jordaches with snow. He responded by giving me a wedgie hard enough to rip my underwear. So you’ve got to be really careful when you’re sledding.

Skiing. Oftentimes the temperature in Boston will sink into the teens or lower. You know what that means: time to go north and seek higher elevation. When you get to the mountain, you’ll park in Lot 15, which is that many miles from the base lodge. Then you’ll carry your $2,000 worth of gear to the lodge, where everyone removes their normal shoes and hides them under a cafeteria table. You put on your ski boots, which require you to walk like you have a loaded diaper, then realize that you have to go to the bathroom, which is down six flights of stairs. By the time you clomp there and back, it’s lunchtime. After lunch, you decide to head to the summit, which is easily accessible from the base lodge. All you do is take the T-bar to the top of Silly Goose, then ski down to the Rabid Moose quad and take it back up to Head Wound Gully. You ski that down to the Chairway to Hell low-speed triple, and then from there it’s back down Certain Dismemberment, where you traverse over to the gondola. There, a guy named Xander who’s just taking a year off to figure things out will herd you and five strangers into a small box, where you’ll spend the next 10 minutes avoiding eye contact and praying nobody farts. When the gondola doors reopen, you’ll find yourself watching the sunset from the majesty of the mid-mountain lodge. So you ski back down to the base lodge, which takes 30 seconds, and get into some après-ski, which involves frostbitten people with reconstructed knees getting drunk to Dave Matthews Band covers while wearing winter hats indoors. It might all sound like a lot, but you can learn to be a competent skier even if you start at an advanced age, by which I mean no later than 6.

Ice skating. Winter just isn’t winter without a deep bone bruise, so why not go for the coccyx?

Ice fishing. Ice fishing is when you cut a hole in the ice and then build a six-bedroom house around it, complete with NFL Sunday Ticket in the game room and a two-car garage. One night, during a dinner party, the caterer offers a heavy passed hors d’oeuvre—some kind of beef with chevre thing, really good—and your friend Jeff takes a step back and puts his foot right down through the fishing hole, which is next to the half-bath off the kitchen, and you’re like, “Hey Jeff, careful buddy! We’re fishing.” Then the next week the ice melts and everyone is rescued by hovercraft.

Building a snowman. Building a snowman is a playful way to tell Mother Nature that a little bit of sticky precipitation won’t stop you from fashioning pagan idols. Traditional snowmen have lumps of coal for their eyes and mouth, but you should celebrate carbon-neutral energy by using chunks of uranium. The fun thing about making a snowman is that the rolling snowballs pick up anything that was on the ground, making for all sorts of neat surprises. Say, did you clean up after your dog before it snowed, or does Mr. Shivers have a funny-looking pipe in his mouth? No and yes! Don’t worry too much about getting him perfect, because he’s just going to melt. Probably no later than St. Patrick’s Day.

Cold Sweat

Here are some cool ideas for soaking up the sub-zero weather.

http://www.improper.com/life-style/cold-sweat/

I cannot for the life of me figure out how to share the actual page on Improper Bostonian so I copied and pasted giving full credit to Ezra Dyer. This article had me laughing so hard at 6:30 am with lack of coffee in my system. Why is it so funny to me? Because certain ideas resonate so strongly. Thank you Ezra!

 

Love – the motivation for bail money

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If this doesn’t sum up the love we all have for our partner and yet… no one really wants to talk about it (especially Disney). We deserve to be told the truth about love when we are growing up, why is it such a secret? It only creates disappointment by not being prepared.

One day you can’t stop smiling, can’t stop laughing, can’t stop thinking about that getaway you are planning, and either later that day or the next, your thoughts turn to – how to make it look like an accident – but you don’t, nor would you, follow through. Why? because that is what love is.

Taking the good days with the bad; the sheer bliss with the overwhelming desire to run as far as the dirty crumpled dollar bill, warm gummy bears, and torn tissues in your pocket will take you… the compromises, the stolen glances that still make your heart beat just a bit faster… It’s a packaged deal and there is no way that your relationship will last if you don’t know this going into it.

Love gives you more patience than you ever thought imaginable. It also gives you motivation to start a collection – also known as bail money.

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Tantrum vs protest

“A protest is a peaceful objection to a grievance, a bunch of sore losers occupying a space, is called a tantrum…”

I have been diligent about staying out of the political arena for these past several months and especially now that most people seem to be losing their minds over the outcome. I completely disagree with protesters thinking they are allowed to damage private property or police vehicles without being held responsible for their actions.

So for posterity sake only, purely for myself, when I get older, gray hair, losing my mind and want to see how either the president-elect pulled it together and rocked it or completely fell apart and brought us into a living hell – I have set up this link to remind myself how I was feeling (give or take) a week after the election:

Tantrum not a protest

You may agree or disagree, or even stop following me, but I am not losing hope nor pretend to predict the future – it looks like a drastic change for the next four years, let’s all hope for the best because…..

“WANTING HIM TO FAIL IS LIKE WANTING THE PILOT TO CRASH THE PLANE THAT WE ALL ARE ON” – – (good analogy and not my words)

Let’s face it, we didn’t have much to choose from. Many people agree that if the Dems had chosen Sanders against Trump the outcome would have been much different. I tend to agree with those sentiments.

I have a Rendezvous with Death

I Have a Rendezvous with Death

BY ALAN SEEGER

I have a rendezvous with Death
At some disputed barricade,
When Spring comes back with rustling shade
And apple-blossoms fill the air—
I have a rendezvous with Death
When Spring brings back blue days and fair.
It may be he shall take my hand
And lead me into his dark land
And close my eyes and quench my breath—
It may be I shall pass him still.
I have a rendezvous with Death
On some scarred slope of battered hill,
When Spring comes round again this year
And the first meadow-flowers appear.
God knows ’twere better to be deep
Pillowed in silk and scented down,
Where Love throbs out in blissful sleep,
Pulse nigh to pulse, and breath to breath,
Where hushed awakenings are dear …
But I’ve a rendezvous with Death
At midnight in some flaming town,
When Spring trips north again this year,
And I to my pledged word am true,
I shall not fail that rendezvous.
Source: A Treasury of War Poetry (1917) via PoetryFoundation.org
I read this on the train coming home last night. It rings just as tragically beautiful as when Seeger first wrote it about a year -/+ before he entered WWI.

The love-hate relationship with October

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I love Halloween, it is my favorite holiday EVER, period. However, it is also the most painful month too.

Gone too soon, only 21 years old for a few months… I am reposting this because of the 33 yrs anniversary:

It is with great displeasure that I write this post. What I wouldn’t give to have my brother back these 30+ years. To see whom he would have married, his children, his choices in life. But instead he chose one of the most unselfish ways to spend his short time here among us, he joined the Army and became an elite Ranger. Consequently he was killed during the second wave in a very small town, on a very small Caribbean island called Grenada, giving coverage to many American medical students forced to return home during a hostile political event.

A devastating time for my parents; to be told you will never see your child again, to never say good bye one last time, to say I Love You one last time. It’s one of those things we take for granted I think, saying I love you, taking for granted you will see or talk to the person tomorrow and remember ‘next time we talk’. Even saying it in passing is great to hear, but not quite the same as if you knew it would be the very last time…the very last time… heart breaking, devastating, it goes beyond that. There is just no word for the amount of empty left behind.

He was just a great person, not because he is no longer here and fond memories can sometimes overshadow the bad times, he was truly one of those people who would go out of his way for you to make sure you were happy, to help if he could, a kind and gentle soul and so very funny. He loved music, was artistic, and put up with his kid sister always tagging along when he just wanted to hang with his friends.

Ah, his friends, they were bountiful and from so many different crowds; neighborhood, school, church, sports, he fit into all the groups with ease because there were so many different levels of him to love. I could go on for pages giving him accolades, and all would be true, but I won’t.

Recently I have been given the opportunity to have him, and his unit, honored for years to come as I have been requested to submit his picture (shown above) to the National Museum, United States Army for a permanent exhibit in their halls. How proud we of him, how much we miss him every day, how I would give anything to change that day and have him back.

Operation Urgent Fury

Operation Urgent Fury

#MemorialDay