Lulabelle’s Gift Guide To Things You Can’t Believe Are a Thing But Might Be Tempted to Buy Anyway….

One week to go before Christmas and if you are a parent, grandparent/guardian of a child or children who are driving you crazy, there is still hope for their behavior to turn around. If they still believe in Santa, you can now put his phone number in your phone and threaten to call him and give him a bad report. Now back in the day all you had to do was put Santa Clause in your contacts and show your kid the entry. It didn’t matter that the actual number went to a random “**bong bong bong!** We’re sorry, your call cannot be completed as dialed…” nonsense. It would work like a charm.

Today’s kids are a bit more suspicious. This is why this time around when you dial this specific number, you actually get a message from Santa where you can leave your wishlist. Here are the digits: 951-262-3062.

The other night Chad and I attempted to finish our Christmas Gift List with a quick trip to the store. We weren’t successful in completing our list, but we did run across a few products that had us scratching our heads and wondering if we were getting Punk’d.

I’m still not sure. Here is the list of items………

Make Your Own Gross Poop!!: I saw this with my own eyeballs, but didn’t get a picture (I was apparently too much in shock), but you can find it here. This is essentially a kit where you can make fake poop as a prank. For some reason the kit includes fake corn kernels and tiny plastic flies.

Really when I saw this I thought to myself, why not just cut out the middle man and……Never mind! :-O

Movin’ on…….

Tom’s of Maine Deodorant 24 Hour Odor Protection-Apricot: Ok, this one I found (and actually used) a few months ago. Now, I’m not one to say that you can’t give toiletries as stocking stuffers. I will accept deodorant, shampoo, toothpaste, Ex-Lax…..I mean, why not? You get it for Christmas then you don’t have to buy it.

Score!

So I purchased this deodorant several months ago when I ran out of my regular Arm and Hammer deodorant. I found out years ago that I’m allergic to antiperspirant, which is found in most women’s deodorant options. So I have to use men’s deodorant that doesn’t make me smell like a guy.

That severely limits what I can use.

I couldn’t find my regular deodorant one day so I picked up Tom’s of Main 24-Hour Odor Protection in Apricot. It smelled WONDERFUL, but there was one large drawback.

That 24 Hour Odor Protection claim?? Complete malarkey! It lasted at most an hour or two. Now I do admit that it may be my specific body chemistry that made this product fail, but we’ll never know because I used the entire tube and am not going to repurchase it.

That’ll show ’em. 😛

This last item I saw on YouTube a few months ago. And it’s probably the weirdest on the list:

Super Catnip Crazy Pants: I feel like I just translated into English some obscure item from Sanskrit or something. These are a pair of pants made out of crinkly material that your cat can crawl through. You can also wear them. No I’m not kidding.

All of these sentences are true. See for yourself : (Review starts at the 5:33 mark).

Of course you probably have a couple questions. Let me address them:

1. Why is there a cat toy in the shape of PANTS you can WEAR?? Yeah, I’m stumped.

Ok, you may have only had one question.

So that’s it! I hope this helps you whittle down your christmas lists.

Ho, ho, ho!!

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And this, boys and girls, is why we don’t have Super Catnip Crazy Pants! 😛

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Grandpa Sommers

I know I normally write a funny post on Fridays. Today however I wanted to share something my cousin wrote to pay tribute to one of the sweetest people I ever knew; my grandpa Sommers. May this story of his life inspire you to live with purpose and without fear. You are loved. You matter. You have a Purpose.(Oh and PS: the chainsaw my grandpa had in his hand was running. Yep. Bada** 😉 )

Oh crap, it's tomorrow

My Grandpa Sommers fell out of a tree and died right before his 98th birthday. Yep, you read that correctly. HE FELL OUT OF A TREE AND DIED AT THE AGE OF 97. (With a chainsaw in hand, might I add.)

This happened in October 2010.

Now I could probably spend a good ten blog entries writing about my Grandpa Sommers, since he was an intriguing soul. He prepared people’s taxes in his home well into his 90s, and was a retired minister and farmer. He got up early and went to bed late. He sang beautifully. He was affectionate–not afraid to hold my hand or give tight hugs. He was soft spoken and only used rotary telephones. He answered the phone, “Sommers’ residence,” instead of saying a boring hello. He loved building things, gardening, and planning and completing projects around the home and outdoors.

He was thoughtful and frugal…

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Goats and Baseball: A Brief History….

As Game 3 of the World Series begins tomorrow and our boys are taking a break to travel today, I thought I’d talk more in depth about why having the Cubs in the World Series is such a big deal. (And if any die hard cubs fans are afraid talking about this will jinx them, forget about it. The curse was broken when they made it to the World Series 😉 ).

During this last season, including the playoffs, you have have seen the hashtag: #WeAintAfraidOfNoGoat on the internet and on tee-shirts (sidenote: I really wanted one, but when I looked online and saw they were $25, my Mennonite frugality kicked in and I decided I didn’t need it).

So what is this thing about a goat and why would Cubs fans be afraid of it? To answer that, I need to go way back to 1945 and game 4 of the World Series. According to at least one story I heard, Wrigley Field was having a “Take Your Pet to the Game” Day. I don’t know if I necessarily believe this, but it was 1945 and things were way different.

And I guess its within the realm of possibility.

So Billy Sianis, owner of the Billy Goat Tavern (Hold up! He was the owner of a tavern named BILLY GOAT?? Yeah, we probably should have all seen this coming! 😀 ) took his goat to the game, and was asked to leave because of the goat’s stench. Of course he took offense at this and uttered the infamous phrase, “Them Cubs, they ain’t gonna win no more!”

And that was it. The Cubs would spend 71 years trying to claw their way back to the Big Dance of Major League Baseball.

And on the anniversary of Mr. Sianis’s death (October 22, 1970), 46 years later, the Cubs finally broke the curse by advancing to the World Series.

And tomorrow night is game three at Wrigley. And so we say with pride: “We ain’t afraid of no goat!”

Go Cubs!

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Here is a photo taken from our World Series Game 1 Watch Party at our best friend’s house. Their daughter, our niece, could not stop staring at my lucky Cubs necklace.

PS: (Written November 4, 2017) As I was rereading this, I realized what shirt I had on in this photo. A shirt I had worn to watch Game 1.

It had a goat on it.

They lost game 1.

My bad. 😛 😀 #TheyDidItAnyway #CursedNoMore

 

Lulabelle Reviews: Lay’s Passport to Flavor: Kettle Cooked Indian Tika Masala…….

Well folks, it’s that time of year again. That part of the year where I purchase and eat weird potato chip flavors to let you know if they are worth it or not.

So the people at Lay’s have taken this “contest” (I put that in quotes because the “winning” flavors seemingly disappears within weeks of the end of the “contest.” Never to be had again) and turned it on it’s head. This year they created an international experience with 4 new chip flavors: Chinese Szechuan Chicken, Brazilian Picanha, Kettle Cooked Indian Tika Masala and, Wavy Greek Tzatziki. Each bag sold is worth 100 “miles” that you can collect and go online to win various prizes. We’ve been so swamped here lately that all I’ve had the energy to do is eat and review each chip flavor. Which means we probably missed our chance to win an all-expenses paid trip to Guam.

Dang it!!

Today’s review is on Kettle Cooked Indian Tika Masala. Now in full disclosure this was the chip I was MOST excited about. I freakin’ LOVE Indian food, and Tika Masala in particular.

Smell: A fragrant explosion of curry. Tika Masala is a cream based curry.

Appearance: Like intense BBQ chips but instead of bbq flavor, it’s cumin and turmeric with specks of red.

Flavor: BBQ flavor that is more salty. I do taste a bit of the taste they were going for. They have a starchy after taste. A fair bit of heat, and I do definitely taste the cumin and turmeric (smokey flavors).

Honestly the texture is a bit strange. I’m used to real Tika Masala that you can put over rice. The rice helps to cut the heat and adds a bit of sweetness.

There is NO sweetness in these chips.

I’d rather go for the real thing. Plus I can have leftovers of it and eat it the next day. This bag lasted me 10 minutes.

So in summary, unfortunately this chip didn’t live up to it’s name or reputation. We’ll try a new flavor tomorrow.

Bon-Appetit’ Y’all!

Photo on 2016-08-28 at 22.51

FTC Disclosure: This is not a sponsored post. All items purchased by me.

My Gratefulness List……

Yesterday on the blog I shared about my stupid freak accident that boogered up my foot. Today I am reflecting on all the things I’m grateful for despite having to be couch-bound for the next few days:

  1. The inventor of sponge baths: I don’t know who came up with this concept, but I’m a big fan. Because I’m unable to completely submerge myself in a tub of water (cool water. I may be taking cold baths for the rest of my life, just as a precaution), a washcloth, sink and a bar of soap have been a god-send. Especially for visitor’s noses. Seriously, I was smelling pretty rank till yesterday. 😀
  2. Dry Shampoo: Although I’ve been able to give myself a sponge bath, I have yet yo MacGyver a method to wash my hair. The two cans of dry shampoo I received for Christmas last year has come in quite handy.
  3. Working internet: I’m SO thankful for working internet so at least I can chat with friends if they aren’t able to come over and visit me on the couch in all my dry shampooed glory.
  4. A loving and patient spouse: Since being confined to the couch, I’ve not been able to do the every day things around the house that I normally do. So Chad has picked up some of the slack. He’s done this without complaining. He’s also graciously ran interference with the youngest, gently picking him up and putting him at his food bowl when he tries to eat from his sisters bowl. To top it all off, he made sure we had a beautiful anniversary breakfast on Wednesday morning, complete with a dozen roses and a box of donuts.
  5. The sweet friend who has been changing my dressing twice a day. She is the future of medicine and that future is full of hope. She makes a house call right to our couch to check my healing process and change the dressing. And she does all this with a smile and a joyful heart. There has been more that I’m thankful for this week, but my eyes are getting pretty heavy so I think I’m going to end this entry here.

    We live in a world of darkness and pain and stress. But if we look around we can find the tiniest sliver of hope and encouragement. Even from the couch.

    Cheers!

But Joy Comes in The Morning…..

Every Saturday night for the past month at 10:22pm sharp Chad and I observe what has become a sacred ritual; we bow our heads and thank the Lord for giving us Cathy Cat for as long as she lived. We also pray for Phoebe that she would adjust to our eventual new addition to our family; a kitten.

Why 10:22 PM? It was in that moment that our precious cat’s heart stopped beating this side of heaven as she passed peacefully over the Rainbow Bridge.

Losing a pet sucks. Especially when you consider them a member of your family. Your child.

And I slipped into a depression that I hadn’t expected. It was awful. I didn’t even have the strength to blog.

Feelings of guilt, sadness, and grief freely flowed through me.

The guilt? Thinking that I, Cathy Cat’s primary caregiver, did something wrong to cause her death.

It got so bad that Chad and I went to a session of grief counseling. I have no shame over this and encourage anyone that has experienced the loss of a fur baby to consider talking to a professional if you feel like you need some extra help navigating your feelings.

So after we lost Cathy Cat, we had a hole in our family. In a way we always will. But in the meantime we wanted to expand our family to include a little furry bundle of joy. So last Saturday, this little guy joined our crazy family.

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Mr. Riley Bean is 10 weeks old and all kitten. He’s added so much energy to our house. And JOY. SO much joy! You can’t help but smile when a 10 week old kitten frantically tears around the room playing hockey with a Cheerio. It never occurs to him to eat it, thankfully.

All this last month, I’ve been thinking about the verse in the Bible about pain only lasting for a night, but joy comes in the morning. This has been SO true for us. Riley Bean is our true joy and we thank the Lord daily for him.

Dear reader, if you have ever lost a pet and are in mourning, take heart. The Lord cares for your hurt and will restore your heart.

“But joy comes in the morning!”

**Special thanks to S-R Images for doing Riley’s first baby photoshoot and providing a photo for today’s blog.  If you’d like to book them for your next event, find them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/esrimages/?fref=ts

Lulabelle Cooks Without a Net: PMS Symptom Reliever Smoothie……..

**Before we begin today’s entry, a disclaimer: I am not a doctor or medical professional of any kind (big fat “duh!” but being that people believe anything they read online, it has to be said). If you are experiencing raging PMS, please consult your doctor before embarking on weird alternative remedies found on your favorite blog. 😉

So last week I wrote a post about what happens when grief and PMS collide. To sum up, things can get pretty dicey. So this weekend I decided to do something about it. And all I needed was a blender, Google, and food we already had in the fridge/freezer.

Different foods do different, magical things for our body. Apparently. Fish oil from fish helps our hearts, eggs and other protein rich foods help our brain function. There are even foods that supposedly ease PMS symptoms.

Say WHAAATT?? :-O

According to my quick google search, foods like yogurt, brazil nuts, dark chocolate and salmon help reduce PMS symptoms. You know what comes next…..Let’s take this to the kitchen!!

So I knew we had dark chocolate, yogurt, almond butter and spinach, so I added those into the blender (quick tip: If you are working with Hershey’s Kisses, make sure to unwrap each kiss completely so that you don’t accidentally add part of the foil or flag to your smoothie….although that would add extra fiber…hmmmm….).

Then I grabbed a frozen banana that I had to chisel out of the tupperware container with my finger, threw that in the blender with milk, cinnamon and a tiny bit of chili powder (for, you know, antioxidants and stuff). While I was up in the freezer getting the banana I saw a partially used bag of frozen broccoli that had probably been there since the Eisenhower administration. With a, “Eh, why not” attitude, I threw a bunch of the frozen green goodness into the concoction.

Then I gave it a whirl.

The smell upon opening the blender was not unlike french toast with a hint of chocolate. I could stomach that. Totally.

I was surprised at the taste; a bit yeasty not unlike bread. With a chocolate element. It was basically a grainier version of Nutella. And now I want Nutella. These PMS cravings are no joke, guys.

Overall, I’m not for sure that this smoothie actually helped to alleviate my symptoms, but I definitely felt like I was being proactive in helping myself feel more human-like. And it involved chocolate, so I really couldn’t go wrong. 😀

Bon-Appetit Y’all! ❤

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**We put a man on the moon, cured polio, made a wristwatch you can watch TV on and THESE menu items DON’T exist. Priorities, people!! 😛

Image appears courtesy of Yahoo search