Steemit Exclusive: Sound Bites From My Childhood…

The following story from my childhood was originally shared on my Steemit account.

I’ve wanted to upload this story sooner than today, but our oldest cat has been sick and after a trip to the vet yesterday it was determined she needs dental surgery. So it’s gonna be a fun next couple weeks up in here.

*The name of the main character in the story below has been changed to protect his privacy and dignity.

Although I was in kindergarten more than 30 years ago, I still very vividly remember this next story. My class was small and one of the kids in my class was named *Fredrick.

On the outside, there wasn’t anything extraordinary about Fredrick, but while we were in kindergarten he was going through an interesting developmental phase…..

He bit people.

Specifically me.

I can’t recall if I was his only victim or if he had others on his munchy list, but I do remember several instances where my arm and his teeth connected. Of course, I told my teacher about this and she made sure that we no longer sat next to each other.

But Fredrick still found a way. I remember one day in particular when I was several kids away from him in the reading circle. Unfortunately, I was sitting next to one of his criminal associates (no doubt part of some sort of kindergarten biting mafia) and they grabbed my arm and stretched it out so that it would make easy contact with his teeth.

This incident prompted a call to Fredrick’s parents and a few days later I got a letter in the mail (this was way before email was a thing) along with a small stuffed bear. The letter was a formal apology from Fredrick.

The biting stopped after this letter was sent. I found out later that in addition to the apology letter/teddy bear, Fredrick’s mom took him to the library (back in the day these were building where you could go and take out books to read for free) and had him look up the word “cannibalism.”

I’ve since tasked mom’s I’m living vicariously through to do this if their little one has a biting phase. 😛

Fast forward 10 years. I was going to a high school that had weekly assemblies. These assemblies had assigned seating that would change every semester. My senior year I looked at the new assembly seating chart and who was I assigned to sit by?

FREDRICK!

I guess this is what happens when you live in a small town and need to fill an assembly hall with assigned seating.

Thankfully, Fredrick kept his teeth to himself during the semester and I emerged bite free at graduation.

So take heart, parents of tiny cannibals, most likely your child will grow out of craving human flesh.

And if not, at least he’ll become an awesome apology note writer. 😉

Cheers! 

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Steemit Exclusive: The Dangers of Getting Dressed in the Dark…..

Growing up in the midwest, there is a certain time of year, namely winter, where you get up before the sun and have to leave for work or school before the sun is up. When I was in high school, I had to ride to school with my mom who was a teacher at the high school I attended. This meant that there were plenty of days that I’d have to get dressed in the dark.

Fortunately, I was still able to look as presentable as you’d imagine for someone who went to high school in the late 90’s, knee-deep in the grunge style scene.

There was one slight drawback for getting dressed in the dark. And I never figured it out till it was almost too late.

I suppose it was my own fault. See, I had a habit of wearing the same pair of jeans more than once in a week. Normally, I’d wear the same pair on consecutive days. But back then I also had a bad habit of not shaking out my pants before putting them back on.

I blamed this on how early I had to wake in the morning.

It wasn’t until I was already at school, waiting for class to start, when all my friends were around, that I would make a grim discovery. I’d find a strange bulge in my lower pant leg. Now, because of my leg brace, I didn’t feel anything weird, it was only when I went to pull my legs to my chest when I was sitting down that I’d feel the strange bulge.

But what was it?

In a word, it was, um…….underwear. Dirty underwear to be exact.

Yeah, turns out I hadn’t shaken out my underwear from my jeans from the day before and they were now stuck in my pant leg.

At school.

In front of my friends.

Ladies and gentlemen, this would be the alternative dream to the one where you arrive at school naked.

So how did I retain my dignity and not let slip (pun intended) my mistake in getting dressed that morning? By a slow and sneaky sleight of hand maneuver. I’d put my hand over the bulge in my leg and begin rubbing it up and down like I had an itch….slowly working the offending garment down my pant leg and out through the leg hole. I’d scrunch it into a tight ball in my fist and hold it tight while I made a sort of “walk of shame” to my mom’s classroom where I’d hand it off to here and she’d put it in her desk. The thought never occurred to me to put it in my locker. I guess I figured it’d be more likely to fall out when I opened my locker and then I’d really give everyone something to talk about.

In a school of no less than 200 students, a tale of runaway underwear would have spread as fast as the tickets sell out for a Taylor Swift concert.

Now you’d think that perhaps this only had to happen once for me to remember to shake out my jeans when I took them off.

You’d be wrong.

Even 20 years later I can remember this happening no less than 3 times.

So why did I include this story? Well, you see, I got dressed in the dark this morning and am now writing this entry in an isolated corner of the grocery store.

With a balled up pair of dirty underwear in my fist.

Some people never learn. 

Cheers! 

LAFF: Lulabelle’s DIY Edible Room Deodorizer………(When You Burn Dinner But Are Too Short to Open the Windows)

There are a few things in life that are inevitable: death, taxes, having that dream where you arrive at school in your underwear or naked, and burning dinner at least once. 

Last night I burnt dinner. 

We are trying to eat healthier and save money, so last night I grabbed a pre-packaged chicken from the freezer and ran it under hot water before opening the package and reading the directions.

The directions never said anything about putting a small amount of water in the pan, so initially, I didn’t. Especially since I was using a nonstick pan.

That was dumb.

It began to stick, so I threw in a tiny bit of water.  I think that made it angrier as smoke started to pour from the skillet and I smelled burnt meat. 

Panic also set in as I realized I’m too short to open the windows and air the kitchen out. 

Praying I wouldn’t set off the smoke detector, I turned the burner off and pronounced dinner done. 

We ate what we could, but I have to be honest, it was chicken that looked like roast beef. In my defense, it wasn’t all my fault. Turns out that when you overcook chicken that has been dredged in Jamaican Jerk seasonings, it’ll definitely have a beefy quality when you plate it. 

After dinner, I had to face the burning meat smell in the kitchen and figure out a way to make it go away. Long story short, I’m a genius. 

First I took two mandarin oranges and peeled them. I put the slices and peel in a saucepan. Next, I added just a small bit of water, half an inch, to the pan. Finally, I covered the top with cinnamon and cloves and put it on the stove on medium high heat till it boiled. After it came to a boil, I turned it down to low to simmer for 10 minutes.  

 This filled the kitchen with such a yummy, warm smell of citrus and cinnamon. I was in heaven! After the mixture simmered for 10 minutes, I took it off the stove, fished out the orange slices and ate them. Finally, I strained out the peels poured the liquid into a glass and DRANK THE REMAINING JUICE! 

I will definitely be doing this again (adding a little bit of sugar) but I’ll be making a bigger batch and turn it into iced tea. 

Stay tuned! 

Steemit Exclusive: The One Where Lulabelle Reviews ZICO Coconut Water and Regrets Her Most Recent Life Choice…….

I’m a sucker for packaging. If there is something in a cute package, 9 times out of ten I’ll pick it up and at least 5 times out of ten I’ll end up buying it.

Last night Chad and I went to the grocery store to pick up a few essentials. While in the juice aisle I ran across this:

ZICO WATERMELON COCONUT WATER DRINK
Now in addition to being a cute package fanatic, I’m also a watermelon fanatic, so when I saw the bright pink with specks of black, I knew I had to try it. And it was practically a steal at $2.99. (#HeavySarcasm)

Guys, I was had.

The advertisers roped me in with the cute packaging and by the time I realized how awful the product was, it was too late. I had already taken a sip.

And then I finished it. I KNOW, LINDA! DON’T JUDGE ME. LET ME EXPLAIN!

After my first sip, my face went into such contortions I thought I might vomit. (Ok, you can go ahead and judge me just a tad.) But then I thought maybe it’d get better as I drank it. (And I know what you are thinking, but no Linda, you are wrong, this was alcohol-free. 😉 I’ve just always been an overachiever. Sometimes that doesn’t end well. )

It’s like that idiot who tastes something, declares loudly that it “tastes terrible” and then asks another soon-to-be idiot to try it.

And I’m BOTH idiots.

So I’m sure you are all aching to know how this vile concoction tasted……

I have several thoughts on this and can’t make up my mind. The first taste that hits you when you sip it is…..salt.

Why?? It’s like this drink is catered towards those weird people who insist that salting their melons makes them taste better. Ladies and gentlemen, these people should not be trusted.

Then the flavor morphs into straight up Alka Seltzer which I have bad childhood memories of my mom who gave this to me to drink when I was sick. Thirdly, I’d like to think that this drink is similar to that stuff that they make you drink before you go in for your colonoscopy, which I will be doing, for the first time, in less than 2 years.

Oh, and that sound you just heard? That was the sound of my mother fainting because she forgot how old I am. 😛

So, to sum up, although the packaging is cute, I will not be trying this one again.

LAFF: Lulabelle’s Practical Guide to Staying Cool on Road Trips When the AC Gives Out and it’s as Hot as Satan’s Bum Crack……….

Yesterday Chad posted on Facebook to say that our car’s air conditioner had finally been fixed. I replied by posting the following video:

Mennonite Sing 606

Now I realize the above video might be a bit intense to celebrate a simple AC fix. But when the AC has been broken for 3 weeks and in that time you had to travel 8 hours both ways for vacation, the video above is the only appropriate response.

So today I decided to do my subscribers a solid and give you all a list of *hacks to make a long car trip more comfortable if your AC blows (or doesn’t), and no one can fix it because the problem is super complicated which ultimately makes sense because if it was an easy fix, it would not be your car. 😛

1. Drive at night and arrive at your destination early in the morning. This way you can drive with all the windows down and things are a bit cooler. Yes, the downside is that you may get bugs and dirt in your teeth, hair, and ears, but at least you’ll ingest more protein, right?

2. Pack plenty of water and Gatorade so you’ll stay hydrated.

3. Wear as few clothes as is legally necessary. If you are really desperate, strip down completely but make sure to only take country roads and drive through areas that are not well-lit (combining this tip with the one above would help even more). In this scenario, you won’t be able to take pits stops and pee or drive through for food, so plan accordingly.

4. If you have long hair, put it up in a bun or alternatively, cut your hair before you begin your road trip. Or better yet, shave your head. This will help keep your head cool and will fulfill your mother’s lifelong dream of you getting a haircut.

When Chad and I arrived at our cabin after driving for 8 hours, the heat had gotten to us. Adding insult to injury, our cabin was without AC, so we sat in our room under two strong, blowing fans while we aired out our various creases.

Honestly, if you want to make great time, driving a car with no AC is the way to go because you will want to stop the car as little as you possibly can. And pray there are no accidents along the way. When Chad and I were 2 miles away from our cabin, we got stuck in pre-parade traffic and had to slow down to 1 mile an hour and I’m not gonna lie, I really thought we’d die. Which really sucked because we had been needing this vacation for the last 3 summers.

5. Fill a small wading pool with water and set it in a meat locker or industrial freezer to freeze. Then place it into the back seat of the car for the passenger to sit in and cool off while you drive down the road. Don’t worry, I didn’t forget the driver. As the ice melts, the passenger in the back will pelt the driver with ice in a refreshing display of sharing.  

*Some of these hacks are embellished or completely ridiculous and Lulabelle.net is not responsible for injury, damages or legal fees if any of these hacks are tried as written. 😉

Snippety-Do-Da! How One Man Engaged in Textual Relations During His Vasectomy…………

The following very true story was originally shared on my Steemit account


Bloggers Note: Yes, the subject of this blog has been contacted and consent has been given to share the following story. Also, I wrote this and planned to upload it earlier this month during International Childfree Day (August 1st), a holiday that celebrates those without children, but life and a much-needed vacation took priority.

Years ago before Chad and I got married, we had the conversation about whether or not we’d have children. At the time we decided that we’d try to adopt. For complicated reasons, most birth control is a tricky situation for me, so we concluded that Chad would get a vasectomy.

Yep. That’s where this blog is going today. Strap in.

So Chad’s procedure was going to be outpatient and on the morning of his surgery I had to work, it was early in the AM, we were not living together at the time and I can’t drive, so it didn’t make sense for me to go with him. Otherwise, I totally would have. Besides, if I had gone, I wouldn’t have been able to write about this.

You’re welcome.

Anyway, our story begins early on the morning of Chad’s procedure. I’m sleeping in bed and get the following text message from Chad:

“Just arrived at the Dr.’s office and am checking in.” At this point, I was glad the procedure was about to begin and began praying for a smooth operation.

About 10 minutes later I get another text from Chad…….

“It’s so weird to not feel a thing but there is the smell of burning flesh in the room.”

It was at this point that I realized, “HOLY MOTHER OF GOD, HE’S TEXTING ME THROUGH HIS ENTIRE VASECTOMY PROCEDURE!”

And he did.

Every NSFW detail.

Which is strange, unsettling and annoyingly entertaining before 7:30 am. I just didn’t know how to respond.

It’s not like I could have called him to have a casual chat. “Hey babe, how’s it hangin’?” seemed a tad inappropriate.

Also, I would think that any sudden loud noises might startle the surgeon and suddenly you owe money for a vasectomy and bonus circumcision.

The procedure went off without a hitch, and Chad was fully recovered a few days after coming home thanks to a steady diet of pain meds and frozen peas.

So why did we choose to share this story? Two reasons, really. One, it’s just a really funny story And two, we wanted to highlight our experience and mention that in the lead up to the procedure, although our doctor asked several times just to be sure, we were never denied the surgery because the doctor believed strongly that we’d “change our minds.”

I often wonder if we didn’t receive much blowback because it was Chad asking for the procedure and not me. Because being submerged in the childless world for the last few years, I’ve come across so many stories of women who know they don’t want to give birth and having blowback from doctors that they will probably “change their minds later.” Even when the person wanting the procedure is able to pay for it out of pocket.

And I never knew how important the freedom of choice was in this aspect of our lives until we went through our experience. To know what we want beyond a shadow of a doubt and have others believe and back us up.

For that, we are truly grateful and hope others experience the same thing…..

Minus the live stream. 😉

Settle For The Best Part 2………….

In February I wrote about red flags to avoid in dating and relationships. Ever since then I wanted to share the other side, ie, what qualities to look for in a potential partner. This spring Chad and I celebrated 10 years together (since our first date) and I thought this would be the perfect time to give you a little insight into what my experience was and how I knew Chad was “the one.”

So Chad and I met online in 2008. You can read my list of safety tips for online dating here. On that list, I believe I wrote about how you need to choose to go out on dates with guys who respect your safety rules. Right off the bat, Chad impressed me because he was totally open to traveling to my city and arriving separately to each of our date locations (there were 2). When you have a person who is down with going out of their way to make you feel safe, you have a good one.

But what initially drew me in was after our first conversation over internet chat? He asked me if he could give me a hug.

I know it seems kinda cheesy and weird to ask for a hug online, which apparently you do like this ((persons name here)), but I was still flattered. Asking for permission before any intimate contact lets the person you are interested in know that they are valued in your eyes.

Then came our second date. We went to a Weird Al concert and then afterward I had a bladder accident. And Chad was completely chill. I cleaned up and we continued our date….and ended up in the ER because Chad came down with a bad migraine.

When we first arrived at the ER, Chad’s name was called to go back into the intake and Chad wanted me to come back with him, even though we had just started dating. During the intake, they asked for his social security number.

There was no way Chad could have lied about that piece of information. Of course, I had gained a bit of trust in him before this moment, but knowing that he trusted me to have this information was a big sign to me.

We celebrated our 5 year wedding anniversary late last week. Earlier this summer I found this meme online and fell in love again:
Facebook Cover Photo Guac

And I wish that every kid in high school, college, and beyond would get a print out of this and put it on their bedroom wall as a reminder of how valuable they are. To not settle for free chips and salsa, but wait for the guacamole that they deserve.

It was because of this meme that I decided to totally lean into the avocado theme and rename my subscriber’s anxious avocados. Because I want to be a reminder to you that you deserve the best, no matter what that looks like.

Cheers!