Do These Lights Sound Pretty?…Gina’s Favorites

Do These Lights Sound Pretty?…Gina’s Favorites

by Gina Valley      

As I stood on the candy-gum-and-other-stuff-you-have-no-good-reason-to-buy aisle in the jumbo warehouse store, listening to my pack debate the various merits of the 973 different types of gum available for them to choose from, I thought about my Do These Lights Sound Pretty? post, and knew that it’d be great for Throwback Day this week.
Laugh along with this Gina’s Favorites post.                            

Do These Lights Sound Pretty?

“The lights on this one change color.  Let’s get it,” Daughter#2 said.

We were standing in the giant electronics store in front of a giant bank of car stereo receivers.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Do These Lights Sound Pretty?...Gina's Favorites ShoppingEach and every receiver looked exactly the same and totally different at the same time.  They were each flashing bright lights.  Some were red.  Some were blue.  Some changed colors periodically.

I wondered how many seizures this display had triggered.

Originally, Daughter#2 had wanted me to buy one of the receivers with red lights, because we were buying and having it installed in The Professor’s red car as a surprise, while he and most of her brothers were out of town.

Color coordination is important to Daughter#2.

I have to admit that the color of the lights on the thing was not even on my list of what was important about the unit for his car.  Would it work with his iPhone? Did it support Bluetooth? How powerful was it?  And, most importantly, could they install it before he got home, so he wouldn’t try to install it himself?

You see, it may seem to the unmarried that the new sound system is the gift.  The unmarried might look at his decrepit car audio unit, with its stems where buttons used to be and its long darkened LCD screen, or listen to the pops and wheezes from the speakers, and think that buying him a new audio system would be a great gift.

And, it would be.

But, the married know that the true gift is having it installed while he isn’t home.

The freedom from having to choose between spending time doing it himself or spending money we could have spent on something else to have someone else install it is the real gift.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Do These Lights Sound Pretty?...Gina's Favorites Shopping

In fact, having to deal with the installation decision and the details and potential guilt-feelings it involves is probably why he hasn’t slapped his AmEx on the counter and bought himself a new unit, even though this one has barely functioned for years.

So, while Daughters #1 & #3 were on the GPS aisle typing made-up city names into the GPS display units to see if the units could find the fictitious places, Daughter#2 and I stood before the wall of electronic car audio options, hoping that the best answer would present itself.

It did not.

But, Mr. YELLS-WHEN-HE-TALKS did.

Mr. YELLS-WHEN-HE-TALKS seemed like a nice salesperson.  He asked if we would like some assistance.  No, he yelled if we would like some assistance.  Not spoke.  Not emphasized.  Not talked loudly.  Mr. YELLS-WHEN-HE-TALKS actually full out yelled every syllable he uttered to us.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Do These Lights Sound Pretty?...Gina's Favorites Shopping“HOW ARE YOU TODAY?!!!” he bellowed, startling the lady looking at the speaker display next to me, causing her to drop her purse.

“IS ANYONE HELPING YOU?!!!”

“WOULD YOU LIKE SOME ASSISTANCE?!!!”

Or, my favorite (in answer to my query for guidance about the differences between the multitude of units on display) “THEY’RE ALL PRETTY MUCH THE SAME!!!  IT JUST DEPENDS WHAT YOU WANT IT TO DO!!!”

That narrowed it right down for me.

Just as I was thinking, “What the heck, maybe we should just get the red one,” Mr. Knows-It-All appeared.

Mr. Knows-It-All helped me to quickly “eliminate units that don’t meet your (my) needs.”  He also pointed out a second giant wall full of receivers to choose from that I hadn’t even noticed before.  Good thing he was helping me to eliminate some from consideration.

Does the car have the original audio equipment (do Cheerios crammed in the speakers count as “original equipment”?)?

Will he be using his iPhone with it (does he have to remember to bring the phone in the car for that to work?)?  

Would he want to use a Bluetooth with that (does that mean one less wire to lose?)?  

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Do These Lights Sound Pretty?...Gina's Favorites ShoppingWill we be using Sirius or XM radio (Do we seem like serious, X-rated people?)?

What kind of music does he listen to (is “makes my head hurt” a kind of music?)?

We narrowed it down to 6 then 4 then 2 then 1 unit.  It was not one with color-changing lights.

Daughter#2 was disappointed.

Then, Mr. Knows-It-All asked the year of the car, so he could determine the speaker size.  When I told him the year, we both suddenly became aware of the fact that The Professor’s car is older than Mr. Knows-It-All.  “Are you sure,” Mr. Knows-It-All asked, “that it still has the original audio equipment?”

After Mr. Knows-It-All rang everything up and gave me my receipt, Mr. Guy-Who-Actually-Works-With-The-Stuff appeared.  He was older than Mr. Knows-It-All and would be installing the system.

Mr. Guy-Who-Actually-Works-With-The-Stuff politely suggested that I buy a different brand of receiver because it works much better and costs the same.  He also pointed out that if I bought speakers in the same brand as the receiver, I would receive a $100 discount, and that that brand’s speakers have better sound quality and longevity.

I said to Mr. Guy-Who-Actually-Works-With-The-Stuff, “How about you pick out what you would get for your car in this basic price range, and cancel the order for this stuff.”

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Do These Lights Sound Pretty?...Gina's Favorites ShoppingMr. Guy-Who-Actually-Works-With-This-Stuff amazed Mr. Knows-It-All by cancelling my first transaction and crediting my credit card, all without the help of a manager.

Mr. Guy-Who-Actually-Works-With-This-Stuff then disappeared for a few minutes and reappeared laden with boxes containing the elements of what was to become The Professor’s car’s new audio system.

Overall, I spent $150 less and got a better system. He showed me each item and explained why he selected it.  I thought his explanation about why he picked the receiver was especially interesting.  He pointed out several features making it more user friendly than most.  He demonstrated how to use it to get the best sound quality.

Then, he said, “This one also has another feature that a lot of people like.”

I was kind of hoping it was Cheerio-repellant or had child-noise-dampening.

Mr. Guy-Who-Actually-Works-With-This-Stuff pushed a couple buttons on the receiver to demonstrate the feature.

“The lights on this one change color.”

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

Have you made a very complicated, simple purchase?  Does your receiver change color?  What’s your favorite kind of music?  Shoot me a comment.  I’m looking forward to hearing all about it.

Tuesday Tickles – stcvc

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Twitter MomSpeak KidSpeak Tuesday Tickles – stvcTuesday Tickles – stcvc

Complied by Gina Valley

I love to share giggles.

Here’s some of the tweets

that made me laugh in the last week.

 

Great tweets from great tweeps:

Be sure to follow me on Twitter so you don’t miss a laugh!

 

Don’t miss a giggle.  “Like” up my Facebook page, and to share it with a friend.

Laugh Loud Out!

-gina

What makes you smile?  Where do you turn when you need a giggle?  Do you have a favorite tweeter?  Shoot me a comment.  I’m looking forward to hearing all about it.

Top 10 Signs Your Children Are On Summer Break

Top 10 Signs Your Children Are On Summer Break

by Gina Valley

Does every faucet in your home have remnants of a water balloon attached to it?

Has the noise level near you risen to unmeasurable decibels?

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Top 10 Signs Your Children Are On Summer BreakIs every towel you own covered in what you’re hoping is mud?

I think I know what you’re suffering from. And, I’m right there with you.

Maybe your kids are on Summer Break.

Top 10 Signs Your Children Are On Summer Break

#10.  You dog’s coat looks extra shiny because someone covered him with sunscreen.  Twice.

#9.  You’re wondering if Froot Loops count as vegetables.

#8.  The refrigerator door has been open for a week straight.

#7.  You have no idea what day of the week it is, and have only narrowed the month down to July or August.

#6.  You wonder if it’s time to call in the HazMat Team, because you’ve lost count of the number of days your child has wearing that swimsuit.

#5.  You think s’mores for dinner is a nice change from the popsicles your kids ate exclusively for the previous 2 days.

#4.  You spent $35 on lemonade making supplies, which your children made into a thick, yellow liquid, and sold to passersby for a total of $3.75, just so you wouldn’t have to answer the “Can we play games on your phone now?” question again for a few hours.

#3.  You’ve hollered “Go outside!” more than 17 times.  In one day.

#2.  You wonder if when your kids dumped bubbles into the pool while they were swimming counts as a bath, because you aren’t sure when the last time they took a real bath in a tub with soap and everything was.

#1.  Dinner time has moved increasingly later every night, to the point that it’s scheduled for breakfast time tomorrow.

And, your kids want Froot Loops.

Again.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

What tell-tale sign always signals summer for you?  What do your children like to do on a summer day?  What do you like to do?  Shoot me a comment.  I’m looking forward to hearing all about it.

Friday Funnies – svsvc

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Facebook Pinterest Friday Funnies - svsvcFriday Funnies – svsvc

It’s Friday.

End of the week. Start of the weekend.

Pull up a chair & grab your favorite frosty beverage.

Time to get your giggle on.

 

Friday Funnies –

Smiles From Around The World Wide Web

Complied by Gina Valley

Be sure to visit the Gina Valley Facebook page and to “like” me up.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Facebook Pinterest Friday Funnies - svsvc

What is this “talk” thing?

 

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Facebook Pinterest Friday Funnies - svsvc

It really is!

 

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Facebook Pinterest Friday Funnies - svsvc

Dream big!

 

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Facebook Pinterest Friday Funnies - svsvc

Sounds like my house!

 

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Facebook Pinterest Friday Funnies - svsvc

This is so true it’s painful!

 

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Facebook Pinterest Friday Funnies - svsvc

I LOVE this one!!!

 

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Facebook Pinterest Friday Funnies - svsvc

Ain’t that the truth?!?!

 

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Facebook Pinterest Friday Funnies - svsvc

…or my dad!!!

 

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Facebook Pinterest Friday Funnies - svsvc

You know, maybe fresh breath just isn’t their top priority!

 

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Facebook Pinterest Friday Funnies - svsvc

Anything for the health of my family.

 

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Facebook Pinterest Friday Funnies - svsvc

This makes me laugh way more than it should!

Have you fanned me up on Facebook? If not, here’s your chance!  Click on over and hit “like” so you don’t miss a giggle (be sure to hover and select “Show in News Feed” while you’re at it, so Facebook will show you the giggles).

Some Of My Favorite Pins On Pinterest:

Consider this your formal invitation to check out all of my boards on Pinterest.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Facebook Pinterest Friday Funnies - svsvc

So, it’s a compliment. Sorta.

 

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Facebook Pinterest Friday Funnies - svsvc

Giving “dog team” a whole new definition.

 

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Facebook Pinterest Friday Funnies - svsvc

I think it heard us coming and hid!

 

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Facebook Pinterest Friday Funnies - svsvc

Even 3 minutes would rock, sometimes!

All the rest of my pins for the week are here on my Latest Great Pins Board.

If you’re trying to put off making dinner, you can check out all of my boards on Pinterest.

 

This Week On The Gina Valley Blog:

My recent humor posts include

Friday Funnies – svvc (a weeks worth of funnies),

111 FUN Things To Do THIS Summer (pick 1 to try),

Tuesday Tickles – svcvc (a week’s worth of funny quips),

If He Answers to “Easter Basket” He Must Be Our Dog…Gina’s Favorites (our dog never learned his name),

Why We Have The Dog (funny & poignant reasons).

I hope they gave you some giggles, too.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina             

What made you smile this week? Did you have a good week?  Any big plans this weekend?  Have you scheduled time to relax?  I’m looking forward to hearing about it!  Shoot me a comment with all the details!

Why We Have The Dog

Why We Have The Dog

by Gina Valley

Our dog, Douglas, passed away quite suddenly this past week.  Our family is heart-broken.

Like all dogs, he was a furry bundle of trouble and work and fun.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Why We Have The Dog PetsIf you don’t have a dog, it’s hard to understand why anyone would want to go through all that effort just to hang out with someone that is loud and messy and, more often than not, smelly.

Yet, our family always has a dog family member.  Sometimes, as many as 3. Currently, we have 2 yearling lab pups that drive us crazy and keep us laughing all day.

So, considering all the work and that we will face the sadness of the end of their life as they age, why we always have a dog?

I’m glad you asked.

Why we have a dog:

Not because one wag of his tail-of-death clears everything off of the coffee table in one fail swoosh, sending books, drinks, and small children flying in all directions, but because a nudge from a furry head can bring a smile to the worst day.

Not because he figured out how to suck all the milk out of the baby’s bottle, but because babies need someone to pull up on when they’re learning to walk and to be a soft landing place when they fall and to eat all of the things they throw from their highchair.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Why We Have The Dog PetsNot because he ate a Costco-size bag of chocolate kisses and pooped sparkles for a week, but because toddlers need someone to play catch and tag with who will never quit and to lick their faces when they’ve snuck candy and who loves gooey hugs and sticky fingers.

Not because he barks non-stop at fireworks, but because 5 year olds need someone to keep them safe during thunderstorms.

Not because he climbed onto the kitchen counter and proved  that a cake meant to serve 55 people all afternoon only serves one dog for 2 minutes, but because 7 year olds need someone to snuggle with when they’ve been sent to their room for sassing.

Not because he’s afraid of caterpillars and the clothes dryer, but because 10 year olds need someone to help them be brave at the neighborhood park, and to meet new friends.

Not because he can’t wag his tail evenly, but because 12 year olds need someone who always has time for them when the world is crazy busy around them.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Why We Have The Dog PetsNot because he insists on carrying a 2L soda bottle around with him, but because teenagers need someone to talk to who will listen forever and never interrupt them and never judge them.

Not because he sleeps on the sofa while we’re out, and hops off quickly  when he hears us drive up, but because 15 year olds need someone to sit with them and protect them when that strange noise in the empty house makes them wish they hadn’t insisted they were old enough to stay home alone.

Not because he feels the need to have a loud discussion with our local gang of raccoons every night at 3:50AM, but because no one should have to be alone when they’re up in the middle of the night.

Not because he ate the entire 6 pound box of jerky treats one afternoon and then brought them up for an encore all over the brand new living room rug, but because everyone needs someone who is always happy to see them no matter what time it is, what day it is, or how cranky they were when they left in the morning.

Not because he loves to wake people up who doze off on the sofa by poking them in their eye with his cold, wet nose, and then licking them in the mouth when they open their mouth to holler at him, but because everyone needs someone to take care of them, watch over them, love them completely even if they don’t always understand each other.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Why We Have The Dog PetsAnd, not because he knocked over the Christmas tree and dragged it around the house while we were at midnight services on Christmas Eve, but because everyone needs to take care of someone, to watch over someone, and to love someone completely even if they don’t always understand each other.

It’s been a rough week at the Valley house as we’ve lost one of our dear furry family members.  We’ll never forget Douglas, but I’m glad we have our other goofy dog, Bear and Ziva, to keep us entertained and smiling.

Laughing and crying this week.

-gina

Are you a dog person? Has there been a special pet in your life?  Do your kids have pets? What is it about animals that make them worth the effort and expense to have them in your life? Shoot me a comment.  I’m looking forward to hearing all about it.

If He Answers to “Easter Basket” He Must Be Our Dog…Gina’s Favorites

If He Answers to “Easter Basket” He Must Be Our Dog…Gina’s Favorites

by Gina Valley

The eldest of our dogs, Douglas, died this week.

We are beyond sad. It was an unexpected passing and quite traumatic for my kids, as he was with most of them their whole life. He was nearly 15 years old.

But, we are thankful for the many years we had with this sweet, loving dog. We will miss him tremendously.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley If He Answers to “Easter Basket” He Must Be Our Dog...Gina's FavoritesThis is one of the posts I wrote about him a couple years ago.  I hope it gives you a smile, as it did me, while remembering him.

If It Answers to “Easter Basket” It Must Be Our Dog

We have several dogs.  We love them all very, very much.

One of them is named Douglas.

Douglas is an idiot.  I mean that in the nicest possible way.

Often when I am looking at Douglas I say to him, “It’s a good thing you’re pretty.”

He is pretty.  He’s a lab and saluki mix with shiny black fur that is soft like a rabbit’s.   His mouth always looks like it’s smiling.  He has a long tail with a dangling, silky fringe that that never gets tangled.  He’s lean and looks like he could run down a cheetah.  He really is a pretty dog.

He’s also pretty dumb.

Douglas joined our family when he was 9 months old.  His first family had named him “Douglas,” after the black train on the Thomas the Train TV show.  We opted not to change his name because we didn’t want to confuse him.  If we knew then what we know now, we would have just laughed and laughed and laughed at the idea of not confusing him.

Douglas, who is sweet and wonderful with children despite his enormous size, lives in a constant state of confusion.  I swear sometimes the other dogs are laughing at him.  I sometimes scold them for that.  Apparently, he isn’t the only confused member of our family.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley If He Answers to “Easter Basket” He Must Be Our Dog...Gina's FavoritesIt took nearly 2 years to teach him to “sit” on command.  It took nearly 4 years to get any kind of acknowledgment from him that when we holler “No!” we are not happy with what he is doing and he should stop.  Even still, sometimes all he does is pause.

He doesn’t wag his tail like normal dogs.  He has an asymmetrical pattern when he puts his tail into motion.  When he’s especially excited about something he does what we call “helicoptering,” which is when his tail just makes continuous, enormous circles.

But, it’s his seeming inability to understand what his name is that is the source of most of our head shaking and giggles.

For his first two years in our family we would call out, “Douglas!” to get his attention, and then, having received no acknowledgement whatsoever again, we would call out, “Trixie!” to get Douglas to come to us.  You might remember that Trixie is one of our other dogs who is, sadly, quite ill now.   He’d see Trixie run up to us and he would follow her.  The funny thing is he would run up to us if we called out, “Trixie!” even when Trixie wasn’t home.

But, that was ok.  At least we knew how to get his attention.

And, he is very pretty.

Even though it usually receives no acknowledgement from him we consistently call Douglas “Douglas.”  We are ever hopeful that he will catch on.  But, at more than 10 years old, he still hasn’t.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley If He Answers to “Easter Basket” He Must Be Our Dog...Gina's Favorites

For almost 6 weeks this past spring he answered solely to the name “Easter Basket.”  Daughter#1 was in a conversation, and when she said, “Easter basket,” Douglas charged across the house, giant paws slipping and sliding, long legs flailing, right up to her.  We thought it was a coincidence.

It’s not unusual for Douglas to make a sudden mad dash through the house for no apparent reason.  We don’t even answer the door if he runs up and barks at it unless the other dogs do, too.  He has excellent hearing.  He even hears, and I think sees, invisible people.

So, scientifically minded people that we are, we tested “The Easter Basket Moniker Theory” again later that day.   We had Son#3 sit on the sofa in the family room with no food nearby, as we wondered if Daughter#1 being in the food-centric breakfast room earlier had been the reason he had made his mad, well-timed dash.

Son#3 called out, “Easter Basket!”  Douglas came running.

I’m not sure if Douglas thought “Easter  Basket” was his name, or if he had associated “Easter Basket” with candy and was hoping to get some (my dad also comes running at the phrase “Easter Basket.”  He loves him some candy!), but for whatever the reason, for the first time in his more than a decade as a part of our family, we had a reliable way to call that dog to us.  Gotta admit it felt a little weird hollering out “Easter Basket!” at the dog park, though.

Since the end of his “Easter Basket” phase, we have been back to calling him “Douglas,” while he is back to having no idea that we are talking to him.

Until yesterday.

Yesterday ‘Ole Easter Basket amazed me.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley If He Answers to “Easter Basket” He Must Be Our Dog...Gina's FavoritesI called out, “Douglas!” and he tore through the house and ran right up next to me, looking at me expectedly.  I was so shocked that it took me a minute to remember I was calling him to see if he needed to go outside.  He went out.

Twice more over the next couple hours I called out “Douglas!” and he ran right up to me.  I was so excited that, at just over 10 years old, he had finally learned his name.  Sometimes you lower your expectations for certain individuals.  I could hardly wait until my pack got home so I could show them.

So, they got home around dinner time, and I called out “Douglas!” to give him a chance to show off his new found brilliance.  No reaction.  I tried several more times.  I even tried with a Scottish accent.  No dice.  He didn’t even look at me until I walked over to him and petted his head.

Whatever iceberg had popped through the surface of that vast empty ocean that is his brain had sunk back down into the depths.

But, that’s ok.

And, luckily, he is pretty.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

Ever have one of those “what’s my name again?” days?  Shoot me a comment.  I’d love to hear all about it!

Tuesday Tickles – svcvc

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley Twitter MomSpeak KidSpeak Tuesday Tickles – svcvcTuesday Tickles – svcvc

Complied by Gina Valley

I love to share giggles.

Here’s some of the tweets

that made me laugh in the last week.

 

Great tweets from great tweeps:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Be sure to follow me on Twitter so you don’t miss a laugh!

 

Don’t miss a giggle.  “Like” up my Facebook page, and share it with a friend.

Laugh Loud Out!

-gina

What makes you smile?  Where do you turn when you need a giggle?  Do you have a favorite tweeter?  Shoot me a comment.  I’m looking forward to hearing all about it.

111 FUN Things To Do THIS Summer

111 FUN Things To Do THIS Summer

by Gina Valley

Summer is always too short.

By the time I’ve got my summer bucket list written down, summer is over.

I always start with big plans. I want to organize. I want to create. I want to family-bond-it-up.  But, there’s never enough time.

My friend, Christi, ever since she was in junior high, makes it a point to get rid of one bad habit every summer. I don’t know how she does it. I’ve tried, and haven’t gotten rid of one yet.

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First of all, it takes me half the summer to decide which of my multitude of bad habits to ditch. Then, it takes me a couple weeks of “just-one-last-time’s” before I truly take a stab at the bad habit. By the time I’m really ready to start stopping, summer’s nearly over. So, come fall, I still have the bad habit, and have added a side dish of guilt to it.

Nonetheless, the idea of focusing on one thing to accomplish during the summer seems like a good one to me.

So, this summer, I decided to pick one thing to do. Just one thing. Something I’ve always meant to do. As long as I get that done, I’ll count my summer a success.

I think I’m going to go with “learning to hula hoop,” but that’s not set in stone yet.

Since I’m asking my kids to each pick something for themselves to do, too, I decided I better come up with a couple of ideas to help get their wheels turning.

In my typical OCD form, I came up with more than a hundred.

Most are low or no cost.  All are fun!

How about you join us? Pick something from this list, or come up with your own. But, either way, let’s have some fun this summer!

111 FUN Things To Do THIS Summer

1.   Learn how to hula hoop

2.   Learn how to pogo stick

3.   Start a campfire without matches or a lighter.

4.   Bake cookie dough in a hot car

5.   Learn how to rollerblade backwards (or forwards, if you don’t know how)
6.   Learn how to do a flip on a trampoline

7.   Learn how to spin a basketball on one finger

8.   Make a Mento volcano

9.   Build a bat box (for the critters, not the ball smashers) (although that would be a cool project, too).

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10.  Take a flying lesson

11.  Make homemade ice cream in Ziploc bags

12.  Teach your dog to shake hands or to bark on command.

13.  Teach your cat how to turn off a light switch or to use the toilet

14.  Learn how to do a cartwheel

15.  Learn Morse code

16.  Learn how to change the oil & oil filter in your car

17.  Learn how to French braid

18.  Learn how to  pick a lock

19.  Learn how to palm a quarter

20.  Memorize the location of every country on a map (and the capitals)

21.  Memorize the location and capitals of all the US states (or for every nation in Africa)

22.  Build a kite

23.  Learn how to play poker

24.  Learn how to write with your other hand

25.  Make cheese (on purpose)

26.  Learn how to crack a safe

27.  Learn how to shuffle cards like a pro

28.  Learn how to bake a souffle

29.  Learn how to  draw a map of the United States (or your country) from memory

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30.  Learn to say the alphabet backwards, starting at any letter, very quickly (one of my friends can do this & it’s quite impressive!)

31.  Learn how to say “I only speak English” in 5 different languages

32.  Learn how to draw a horse

33.  Learn to play a drum kit

34.  Memorize all the lyrics to Born To Be Wild

35.  Learn to play a harmonica

36.  Learn how to bounce a soccer ball with your feet

37.  Learn how to bowl a strike

38.  Master free throws

39.  Figure out how to sign your name so it’s its own reflection

40.  Take a CPR course

41.  Learn to swim

42.  Learn how to chop veggies superfast like they do on The Food Network

43.  Learn how to detect a lie

44.  Learn how to ride a bike (or to pop a wheelie, if you already ride)

45.  Work up to doing 100 sit-ups in a minute

46.  Learn to play pool like a pro

47.  Learn 8 chords on a guitar

48.  Learn how to parallel park in tight spaces

49.  Take a lesson at a shooting range

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50.  Take a self-defense class

51.  Learn how to pick out a good melon

52.  Learn how to balance a checkbook

53.  Learn how to jump start a car

54.  Learn to type correctly

55.  Learn how to do push-ups or pull-ups properly

56.  Pump out a summary of that novel you’ve been meaning to write.

57.  Learn to speed read

58.  Grow a pumpkin (plant around July 4th for October 31 use where I live)

59.  Learn how to drive a manual transmission vehicle

60.  Learn how to solve a Rubik’s cube

61.  Learn how to whistle with your fingers

62.  Learn how to make a perfect martini

63.  Learn how to change a tire

64.  Learn how to make a 3-D sidewalk chalk drawing

65.  Learn to read music

66.  Carve a watermelon into a clipper ship (or a bouquet of roses)

67.  Learn how to do a head stand

68.  Learn how to bake a perfect baguette

69.  Learn how to spiral a football

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70.  Learn how to pitch a curve ball

71.  Learn how to make balloon animals

72.  Learn how to blow double bubbles with bubble gum

73.  Drive a race car

74.  Learn how to make an origami swan

75.  Plant peonies in your yard (my favorite!)

76.  Learn to tango

77.  Learn how to ice skate

78.  Learn how to fold an awesome paper airplane

79.  Fry an egg on a hot street

80.  Learn how to operate a sewing machine

81.  Learn how to juggle

82.  Learn how to ride a unicycle

83.  Learn how to knit

84.  Learn how to roast a turkey/chicken

85.  Learn some magic tricks

86.  Master the yoyo

87.  Learn how to moon walk

88.  Learn how to jump rope

89.  Learn how to increase your vertical leap

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90.  Learn how to tie a tie

91.  Learn how to waltz

92.  Make a piñata

93.  Build a model plane or car or train

94.  Complete a big Lego set

95.  Plan an around the world trip (even if you’ll never go)

96.  Draw a cartoon strip

97.  Write on op/ed piece

98.  Learn how to do the splits

99.  Paint a room a wild color

100.  Learn to make the national dish of 3 countries you’ve always wanted to visit

101.  Learn to tap dance

102.  Memorize the first 50 digits of Pi

103.  Rearrange your furniture so it doesn’t point at the tv

104.  Take a fencing class

105.  Take a golf lesson

106.  Switch all your accessories & photos to different rooms

107. Learn how to use chopsticks

108. Learn tightrope walking

109.  Go bungee jumping

110.  Take trapeze lessons

111. Memorize Oh, The Places You’ll Go! by Dr. Seuss

Let me know what you decide & how it goes. Be sure to add your ideas for this list. Maybe we’ll have 200 for next summer.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

What do you want to do?  What’s some thing you’ve being meaning to master? Is there something you’ve always wondered how to do? Shoot me a comment. I’m looking forward to hearing all about it.

Friday Funnies – svvc

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It’s Friday.

End of the week. Start of the weekend.

Pull up a chair & grab your favorite frosty beverage.

Time to get your giggle on.

 

Friday Funnies –

Smiles From Around The World Wide Web

Complied by Gina Valley

Be sure to visit the Gina Valley Facebook page and to “like” me up.

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 This would be funny if it wasn’t so true!

 

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You gotta watch those gnomes. They’re tricky.

 

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VERY grossly underpaid!!!

 

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I tell my kids this all the time!

 

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Yeah, don’t be a psycho!!!

 

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I know it shouldn’t, but this makes me laugh.

 

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Makes the grammar-geek in me laugh big-time!

 

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I need to take my whole family in! It’s been years since we’ve been shot.

Have you fanned me up on Facebook? If not, here’s your chance!  Click on over and hit “like” so you don’t miss a giggle (be sure to hover and select “Show in News Feed” while you’re at it, so Facebook will show you the giggles).

 

Some Of My Favorite Pins On Pinterest:

Consider this your formal invitation to check out all of my boards on Pinterest.

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 Actually, that might be worth trying.

 

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 I just love this!

 

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The Princess Bride always makes me laugh.

 

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I don’t know why this is funny to me. It’s really not funny. But, for some reason it makes me giggle. Plus, I kind of want to ask what it means if something bites me and dies.

 

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I really don’t want a demonstration. Thanks anyway, though.

All the rest of my pins for the week are here on my Latest Great Pins Board.

If you’re trying to put off making dinner, you can check out all of my boards on Pinterest.

 

This Week On The Gina Valley Blog:

My recent humor posts include

Friday Funnies – Dad’s Rawk!!! Edition (a week’s worth of funnies),

Thank You For Daddy-ing!!! (poignant & funny quotes about daddy-ing),

Top 5 Things You DON’T Want To Hear On A Road Trip (news from the backseat is often not good),

Tuesday Tickles – sdsvc (a week’s worth of funny quips),

Can You Horizontal Mambo With 2 Left Feet? (difficulties trying to…fellowship with one’s spouse),

If It’s Burnt, It’s Cajun…Gina’s Favorites (summertime microwave mayhem).

I hope they gave you some giggles, too.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina             

What made you smile this week? I hope you had a great week. Mine was tough. Hopefully, next week will be smoother.  Any big plans this weekend?  Have you scheduled time to relax?  I’m looking forward to hearing about it!  Shoot me a comment with all the details!

If It’s Burnt, It’s Cajun…Gina’s Favorites

If It’s Burnt, It’s Cajun…Gina’s Favorites

by Gina Valley

I’m constantly dashing around my house, sniffing, and asking, “What was that crash? Do you smell smoke?”

Clearly, summer break from school is in full swing for my children.

So, I figured my If It’s Burnt, It’s Cajun post is perfect for Throwback Day this week. Laugh along with this Gina’s Favorites post.

If It’s Burnt, It’s Cajun

I received a letter from my kids’ school with a list of suggested activities to combat Summer Learning Loss.  Summer Learning Loss?  NOT a problem at my house.  Summer Mommy Mind Loss – huge problem.  That’s what I need to combat.  My kids, however, are learning plenty of things.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley If It’s Burnt, It’s Cajun...Gina's Favorites Summer Appliances Microwave OvenAs always my children have selected their own mode of learning.  This year it’s being facilitated by our microwave (As a former engineer I am bound by my lifetime membership in the siblinghood of geekiness to point out that it is not a microwave.  It is a microwave oven.  It uses invisible microwaves to cook.  My children hate when I point this out.  I hate when they leave their underwear in the kitchen. This makes us even. For today).

And, what have they learned thus far this summer through their semi-clandestine, non-approved course of study? Allow me to provide you with a list.  It’s not an exhaustive list, but having them do all this has been exhausting!

Just yesterday morning my children proved that microwaves have x-ray vision.  They can see right through the lid on the peanut butter jar to the tiny shard of aluminum foil stuck to the top of that jar.  And, they don’t like that shard.

Microwaves are strong.  They can produce enough heat inside the aforementioned plastic (thankfully) peanut better jar to make enough pressure to blow up the lid like a balloon in about 13 seconds.  According to an anonymous child source “it looks really cool.”

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley If It’s Burnt, It’s Cajun...Gina's Favorites Summer Appliances Microwave OvenMicrowaves are patriotic. They produce fireworks in the form of sparks shooting out from said peanut butter jar in 15 seconds.  A thick, black, kitchen filling, alarm-triggering cloud of toxic-smelling smoke is not far behind.

The peanut butter chronicles, actually an attempt by a child to make peanut sauce, took place yesterday.  But, they are far from the first lessons my off-spring have gleaned from their time with our microwave this summer.

Actually, this is our second microwave this summer.  We just bought it last week (I wonder if the peanut butter experiment was some sort of a “Welcome to Our Home” hazing for it or something, you know, to make the microwave feel welcome).  The first microwave was done in by a couple of earlier experiments that left it a bit dodgy, as it would start cooking at random and refuse to turn off until unplugged.

Daughter#1 deduced that Taco Bell burrito wrappers shoot out sparks after only a couple seconds and ignite the grease in the burrito shortly thereafter.  She’s also come to know that when there’s a fire in the kitchen it’s good manners, and good sense, to tell an adult what’s going on before running out into the street and screaming hysterically.

Son#1 has learned that when softening butter for cookies it is vital one does so for only 25 seconds, because when one accidentally does so for 255 seconds the butter dissolves, seeps into the workings of the microwave, and bursts into a butter-scented Molotov cocktail kind of thing.   And, as Son#1 pointed out as the primary lesson the experiment taught him, Mom doesn’t make cookies that night if you set the microwave on fire.

The “heat up the metal fork with the plate of food in the microwave” experiment is still unclaimed.  But, though anonymously done, it provided evidence that a metal fork in the microwave for a minute or so produces enough flames and heat to both cremate the food beyond recognition and to melt the plastic plate enough to allow it and the metal fork to become one entity.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley If It’s Burnt, It’s Cajun...Gina's Favorites Summer Appliances Microwave Oven

Another unclaimed experiment was the “Heat the Pop-tart in its Foil Pouch” inquiry.  Yes, it heats the Pop-tart. Flame will do that.  Yes, it also turns the interior of the microwave into charcoal.

We were taught by yet another unclaimed experiment (my children are such humble scientists!) that heated long enough, and by long enough I mean until someone smells smoke, even plain, dry toast will burst into flame.

Yesterday afternoon, Son#3, the peanut butter perpetrator of yesterday morning, asked if it would be ok if he heated a hot dog in the microwave.  I told him that would be fine, and reminded him to cover it so it didn’t splatter around. Wouldn’t want to get grease spots on the morning’s new flame trails in there!

A couple minutes later I heard the unmistakable pop of a hot dog bursting.

No, he did not cover it.  Yes, it exploded and sprayed the entire inside of the microwave with hot dog bits.  Grease was even running under the microwave door and dripping down the cabinets.

The Professor, always one to have perfect timing, walked into the kitchen to find the three of us standing there staring at the grease trails racing down the cabinet.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Parenting Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Parenting Gina Valley If It’s Burnt, It’s Cajun...Gina's Favorites Summer Appliances Microwave Oven

“What on earth?!” he asked (You know, honestly, after all these years with all of our children and all of their disasters, I don’t know why he still asks.  After all, he doesn’t really want to know. I’m not even sure why he still risks coming into the kitchen).

Now I hate a mess.  And, the idea of having to clean the microwave for the second time in the same day was not the least bit appealing.  But, the exploding hot dog experiment was worth it,  just to see the look on The Professor’s face when Son#4 pointed to Son#3 and told his dad, ”His wiener sprayed all over it.”

The Professor looked at Son#4, who nodded.  He looked at Son#3, who nodded.  He looked again at the liquid trailing down the cabinets. Then, he made a beeline for the foyer, grabbed his hat & keys, and was out the door before we had recovered from laughing and could clarify that we were dealing with a former hot dog.

I hollered out the front door after The Professor, “Where are you going?”

He said, “To buy another bloody microwave!” and slammed his car door.

I didn’t stop him.  We’ll probably need it next week anyway.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

Are there sparks shooting around your kitchen? Any explosions at your home this summer?  Please, shoot me a comment.  I’m looking forward to hearing all about it!

PS

Now before anyone recommends we get one of those over-the-oven microwaves let me say that I am too short to reach those, and, even if I wasn’t I am not nearly coordinated enough to be lifting hot things over my or anyone else’s head.

Also, no, my young kids are not supposed to use the microwave unsupervised.

Yes, my teens are equally guilty for creating microwave pyrotechnics.

And, yes, we have several fire extinguishers AND a smoke alarm in the kitchen, and our homeowners’ insurance is paid up.

And, no, I won’t let my kids read this column because it’s not funny when you mess up with the microwave.  Except the hot dog thing.  That was pretty funny.