Storytime: Abducted by Customer Service……..

*Blogger’s note: I have masked the location of this incident and am not using real names because I truly believe this person meant no harm whatsoever and I want to use this story as more of an educational tool to teach others what not to do. 

Also, while this post contains heavy doses of sarcasm, that has more to do with how I cope with these situations and less to do with the actual person.

As of this upload, the museum in question has reached out and offered a formal apology. 


This weekend Chad and I went on a mini get-a-way. As part of our weekend, we toured a vintage 1950’s style home that has been turned into a museum. Although I was using my wheelchair, I was able to tour it because they had put on a ramp at the back of the house to accommodate wheelchairs.

After we toured the home, we began to make our way across the street and up the block to go to the next gathering of this event. All of a sudden this woman, wearing a museum badge, approached us. She was very excited to greet us and told us that they had just put the ramp in last year and she was SO glad we were there to tour the museum.

And I’m pretty sure I was the first person in a wheelchair to come through the museum. 

Why? Keep reading…….

She introduced herself as one of the curators of the museum and then the conversation took a turn-Her: “I used to work in healthcare. What is your diagnosis?” Me: (Slightly flustered as people ask me all the time what is my disability, but her way of asking was a bit more unique.) “Spina Bifida,” I said.

“Oh wow!” she said. And then it happened.

My husband had been pushing my wheelchair this whole time as we were walking to the next event of the weekend. And suddenly, without asking, the curator GRABBED MY WHEELCHAIR from my husband and started PUSHING ME!!

Now, Chad and I were so shocked we didn’t say anything, and I know that probably wasn’t the best course of action, but here’s the thing: when you’ve been disabled all your life, stuff like this (normally not exactly like this) happens frequently and honestly you just have to pick your battles or you’d end up in an early grave, a victim of repeated 2nd hand social awkwardness.

So we let it go, for about half a block until Chad casually told the lady that he could take over pushing me. Her reply?

“Oh don’t worry, I used to work in healthcare, I know what I’m doing!” 

Um……

Listen, Linda!Can I call you Linda? Cool. Here are a few tips to keep in mind the next time someone in a wheelchair comes through the museum: 

1. When you see a person in a wheelchair, you may approach but DO. NOT. TOUCH. The wheelchair is an extension of the person’s body and is therefore off-limits unless the person specifically asks for help. 

2. Throughout our entire interaction, you mentioned several times that you used to work in health care. I’m just not sure how relevant that information was to the situation. Especially since when we came to a curb cut and you took me down backwards, I almost fell out of my chair. 

Yeah. That was a fun experience.

When you have a situation like this, ask the person in the chair which direction they prefer to come down. 

Also, after this incident we could only assume that when you said you worked in healthcare, you meant to say front desk or billing department of the hospital. 

3. Honestly I would have still told you what my disability was even if you didn’t tell me you used to work in health care. I know others in the disabled community have a different opinion to sharing their diagnosis, but for me, I’ve always had the opinion that others will never learn if they don’t ask. I know this can be confusing, so a good way to ask is this, “Would you mind if I asked you your diagnosis?” 

4. Your museum is awesome and we thoroughly enjoyed our tour. I promise you if you implement the suggestions above, it will be an enjoyable experience for all attendees. 

Cheers! 

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Foodie Friday: The One Where Lulabelle Reviews Dunkin Donuts New Menu Item: Donut Fries……(Alternate Title: Dear Dunkin Donuts: What Were You Thinking?)

Last night Miranda Sings dropped a new video on her YouTube channel. She teamed up with Dunkin Donuts to promote their new Donut Fries. (Be warned, it’s Miranda Sings singing to the tune of Rebecca Black’s “Friday” and you’ll likely contract a viral earworm if you watch the commercial too many times. You’re welcome! 😉 ) As soon as I saw the commercial, I knew what I had to do. 

I had to get them immediately. 

Thankfully Chad was able to go grab them for my breakfast this morning. And I dug right in.

I just wonder how long these were field tested before being rolled out. I feel like maybe the launch was a bit rushed. 

Why? 

I guess it was my fault. I just assumed that donut fries would be donuts in the shape of (in this case, steak cut) fries. 

This was not accurate at all

For starters, the outside of the donut fry wasn’t coated all the way around in sugar like a regular donut should be. Instead it kind of looked like someone had taken a fried donut-esque thing-more on that in a minute-and very casually, with zero concept of accurate aim, threw some sugar on very haphazardly. 

When I bit into the end of the donut, I was in for a shock. It was not a regular donut taste or texture.
Guys, it was definitely potato-y.
And definitely not as sweet as a donut. 
I think they took the name “Donut Fries” WAY too literal. 

It felt like Dunkin Donuts was like that parent that tries to get their kid to eat vegetables and decides to add sugar where sugar shouldn’t be, rendering the already objectionable food completely inedible. 

Also the “crispy” outer layer felt less like a donut and more like a flaky wonton wrapper. 

The entire experience was so strange so I’ve decided to give this Dunkin Donuts product a hard pass…..much like a kidney stone.

Cheers! 

STEEMIT Exclusive: What Happens When I Try To Eat Healthy…….

I’m SO tired today because I was up till 1:30 this morning.  Why? Riley caught a mouse and brought it into the bedroom. Then put it under the bed. I texted Chad the following, “The mouse is now under the bed. I want to move to Florida.” Now, of course, I realize that Florida would be a poor choice because they have gators, but at the time I was not thinking clearly. I was having a real, “Jesus Take the Wheel” moment. 

Because there is was a mouse under our bed. 

To read my full terrifying account, click the link below: 

https://steemit.com/humor/@lulabelle/what-happens-when-i-try-to-eat-healthy

PS: Obviously after the original entry was written, I screwed up my courage, turned on my flashlight and made my way to the bedroom for a rather fitful night of sleep.

And yes, I have since successfully pooped. The ice cream will have to wait till later though. 😉 

LAFF: Mowed Over…….

It’s been a rough week. I want to address what’s in the news lately, but today, I thought we should have a little diversion with a funny story about one of our first world problems. I hope this makes you smile. 


It’s that time again. With the warmer weather, it’s time to make sure your yard is mowed regularly and well-groomed.

Y’all, Chad and I have had the worst time getting someone to mow our grass and clip the hedges. We hired someone two years ago, but they quit last year. Because Chad has allergies and our yard is too small for a riding lawn mower (so I can’t do it), we realized quickly that our only option was to use a lawn service. So I started asking around and someone (who shall remain nameless because I don’t blame them one bit) contacted me with the name of a local, family-owned lawn care business.

Sound promising? Read on……

Now, in the beginning, I was pretty impressed. They answered my inquiry quickly and were able to accommodate our hectic schedule by agreeing to do the work on a day where other businesses were normally closed. On the first day they mowed, I told them that of course the grass needed to be mowed and the large weeds in the front and side of the house needed to be removed. Including that weed on the side of our house by our porch. I specifically remember telling them to remove the porch weed.

Remember that one? Yeah, the one that was so large we used it as a Christmas tree (from December to April as it turns out, but that’s neither here nor there). Honestly, it’s gotten SO much bigger since December that you hardly have to open the door the entire way to see it in its full glory. And yes I have tried plucking it out with my dainty hands and Goliath strength, but it’s passed the point at which tools wouldn’t be necessary.

We agree on a reasonable payment and the guy shows up to do the work. Now, this is where I made the mistake. After the first mowing session ended, I noticed the porch weed was still firmly cemented in the side yard. The guy told me that he’d get to it next time, he just didn’t have his lopper with him (I don’t know why this word sounds like a euphemism for something else. But there it is).

This was my mistake. I should have told him we couldn’t pay him till the job was done, but as this was our first go around, I decided to give him the benefit of the doubt.

I should have reread that first sentence in the above paragraph. Even when he was mowing the grass last week, I could have sworn I heard a weed eater whirring in the background.

So it was to my great surprise and annoyance that I saw the porch weed sitting, untouched, hugging the cool concrete when I opened the door after he had finished. He had knocked on the door so he could say he was finished and I could pay him. But the instant I saw the weed, I looked at him, nodded and gazed toward the weed and pointed. He said, “What?” as I kept eye contact and kept my finger pointed firmly toward the weed.

His eye follows my finger to the weed, he gasped, throws up his hands and says, “$#@%&#!, I forgot my lopper again! Text me and remind me for next time!”

“WHAAATT??!!”

So, um, I guess it’s on me that I thought just verbally telling you what needed to be done would be enough to actually DO what I’m paying you to do.

My bad.

So because you forgot to bring your loppers (Ok, is this a real thing or a tool from Who-ville?), I forgot how to do the math and am only paying you for mowing.

Also, here is a handy-dandy little reminder for next time:

 

 

 

Good luck!! 

PS: Since this writing, the yard guy has been fired and our palatial acreage is on the hunt-for the 1,268th time-for an expert yard guy/girl/person. 

It may be about time to invest in a goat. 😛 

 

Still Here…..

Dear friends, if you or someone you know is struggling with depression and or thoughts of suicide, please seek help. Here are some resources that you may find helpful:

The Trevor Project 

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline ( 1-800-273-8255)

To Write Love On Her Arms

The Hope Line

International Association for Suicide Prevention

Today’s blog is written by my husband Chad. We hope this encourages you and helps you seek help. Remember that NO MATTER WHAT that you are loved, you have worth and you matter. 


32 years ago this evening, just a couple of weeks after the end of my freshman year of high school, I was in the final stages of what I thought would be the plan to end my life. But the Lord had other plans for me, starting with getting me to drop the bottle of pills I’d planned to ingest, having me set aside the suicide note I’d written out, and telling me that He loved me.

I don’t even know where to begin in thanking Him for what He has done in my life since that time. Some of you reading this may not have even been alive 32 years ago. Some of you may wonder if God really hears us when we cry out to Him. Some of you may even be wondering if life is worth living. If the past 32 years of my life are any indication, God’s faithfulness and mercy and peace and grace for us are absolutely stunning and inexplicable and worth every moment of hardship that we may go through even as we hold onto Him and follow Him wherever He leads us.

My life since 1986 hasn’t been easy at all–in fact, it’s been downright agonizing at times–but I have seen God’s faithfulness in so many ways, big and small, far too many for me to count, and I’ve seen how He has carried me through dark days, surrounded me with what Hebrews 12 calls a “great cloud of witnesses” and has given me joy and peace that are totally beyond comprehension–believe me, I’ve tried to wrap my brain around what He has done and is doing in my life, and all I can do is sit in awed silence. I don’t know what the Lord has planned for me the next 32 years, but I hope that no matter where He takes me, I can share this message of His love, peace and hope with others. I can hardly wait.

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Lulabelle Cooks Without a Net: Poor Man’s Pancakes with 10-Year-Old Cracker Barrel Maple Syrup (Not Sponsored)…..

Today I spent much of the day watching the royal wedding. Not because I missed watching it live on Saturday. Oh no. I woke up at 6am to watch it in real-time. But I was so transfixed with the pageantry, I wanted to watch it all again.

I had originally planned to eat a fancy breakfast with the wedding, but as it turned out getting up at 6am is a little too early and therefore dangerous to attempt turning on the stove when one can’t even form coherent sentences.

So I had to settle for a fancy late brunch the next day.

I made what I’ve christened “Poor Man’s Pancakes” so named because I didn’t have supplies for proper pancakes. These pancakes were made with whole wheat tortillas.

Here is the recipe: (Please note: I used standard 10-inch tortillas)

Take one tortilla and press a cookie cutter of your choice into the flat dough. (A few tips here: you may want to use something smaller than a magnolia bloom as the cutter was so large, I could only fit one bloom in one tortilla, rendering the tortilla useless for another shape. I may have had to eat the scraps. Also, I had to put all my weight into the cookie cutter and I still had to flip the tortilla over and push it through to get the shape I wanted.)

Do this as many times as you want pancakes. After which you’ll feel as though you’ve done a complete upper body workout and therefore have earned the calories you are about to consume. 😉 

Next, butter a skillet and set it to medium heat. Place tortilla on skillet and wait until it starts to bubble in the middle. Flip over and heat 1-3 minutes.

Top with butter and maple syrup……..

Speaking of maple syrup, about 10 years ago Chad took me to Cracker Barrel as I’d never been there before. If you order pancakes, they give you an adorable tiny sized bottle of maple syrup. As I was feeling sentimental, I kept it.

And in honor of our 10 year dating anniversary, I busted it out and had a taste. So what does 10-year-old maple syrup taste like? Well, before I found out, I had to open the bottle. Because it had sat for 10 years, it was sealed shut. Apparently, the syrup had formed a crystalized seal that wasn’t broken until I ran the top under hot water for 90 seconds.

Appearance: It doesn’t look any different from the day I bought it. 

Smell: A very strong maple syrup flavor.

Taste: Watered down maple syrup with a tiny bit of caramel flavor for some reason. At this point, it’s not boozy. I think I’ll put the cap back on and wait another 10 years before tasting it again.

Bon-Appetit’ Y’all!!

Poor Mans Pancakes (2)

TRADITION!………

It was birthday week in our house as Riley turned 2 and Phoebe turned 13. To celebrate Riley’s birthday, I sent out the following picture to family and friends:

Riley Birthday Collar

Now, I know what you are thinking, “Uh, he looks pissed.” And I’m not gonna lie, he wasn’t completely on board, but it wasn’t tight on his neck, it was on for only 45 seconds, and he survived and forgave me very soon after this photo was taken. 😉 #DontComeForMyBum

Now for Phoebe, I wanted to do something a little grander. As she turned 13 and that’s a milestone birthday,  we decided to celebrate with a very simple and intimate Bat Mitzvah.

I know what you are thinking, “But, you aren’t even Jewish! That’s cultural appropriation!!” And to that I say, first, slow your roll, bruh. Secondly, technically Jesus was Jewish and we like Him so.….

And thirdly, there’s been a debate in my family about how much Jewish ancestry we have. Not really a debate as everyone agrees there has to be some, but we don’t know exactly how much. Which is why I’ve been walking around in life the last few years telling people I’m about 1/18th ish Jewish.

And so we threw a simple, intimate Bat Mitzvah for our oldest cat. She was overcome with joy.

Phoebe Bat Mitzvah Crown

Seriously, that is her joy face. 

And to make sure everyone felt included, I even made a tiny yarmulke for Riley. He was appropriately pleased. 

Riley Yarmulke

L’chaiyim!