gina valley

The Glamorous Life Of The Modern Day Soccer Mom

gina valley - The Glamorous Life Of The Modern Day Soccer Mom

Because Sometimes The Hair Whisperer Is Not Available…Gina’s Favorites

Because Sometimes The Hair Whisperer Is Not Available…Gina’s Favorites

by Gina Valley

The wind is blowing like crazy here in SoCal today, making my already unruly hair turn into a truly rebellious entity. So, for Throwback Day this week, I knew my Because Sometimes The Hair Whisperer Is Not Available post was just what the doctor…er uh…hair dresser ordered. Laugh along with this Gina’s Favorites post.

Because Sometimes The Hair Whisperer Is Not Available

I had what looked to be the collision of an angry sheep and an insane porcupine on top of my head.

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 Because Sometimes The Hair Whisperer Is Not Available...Gina's Favorites Bad Hair Now there’s something you have to understand about my hair.  My hair has a life all its own.  It’s rather contrary sometimes.  Frequently quite sassy.  I suspect that it might be a teenager.

So, when I have a calm hair necessitating occasion, I call in The Hair Whisperer.

The Hair Whisperer is magical.  I don’t know what she does, but somehow she changes me from out-of-control dandelion to poise-filled business woman.  Even my posture and grammar are improved.

The really cool thing about The Hair Whisperer’s magic is that, as long as I don’t get it wet, after she’s worked her wonder, my hair will stay perfectly for up to 4 days.  Maybe even more.  I’m not sure, because 4 days is as long as I can go without going to the gym (I think I’d need a note from her detailing my hair style preservation mode to get to skip it more than that).

So, since I had a weekend filled with meetings and auditions last week, I stopped by The Hair Whisperers Grotto to have her work her magic Friday morning, secure in the knowledge that her efforts would mean my hair would look great all weekend.

And, perhaps even more importantly, I wouldn’t need to lug 100 pounds of hair stuff around with me on my trip.  The only hair-related accessories I brought were my brush and my satin pillowcase (a must to keep hair from tangling).

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 Because Sometimes The Hair Whisperer Is Not Available...Gina's Favorites Bad Hair

That Saturday I arrived at my first audition about a half an hour early, giving me plenty of time to change into my audition outfit.  I have to admit I was less than completely thankful for the small sedan we’d rented while I was contorting myself in the front seat, changing into my audition outfit.  But, I got my outfit on, and I figured I could count the contorting as a yoga session.

My hair, still very much under The Hair Whisperer’s spell, required only a quick shake and toss to be ready to impress.

The audition went well.  I talked.  They laughed.  All according to plan.

After the audition I repeated my contortionist act, changing out of my audition outfit, in order to preserve its pristine condition for the following days’ audition.  All according to plan.

We drove, albeit in heavy traffic due to some very selfish drivers who decided to overturn their vehicles right next to the freeway (some people will do anything for attention), to San Francisco in preparation for my audition there the following morning, grabbed some dinner, and checked into our hotel.  All according to plan.

The Professor and I ate take out on the bed, and then drifted peacefully off to sleep.

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 Because Sometimes The Hair Whisperer Is Not Available...Gina's Favorites Bad Hair

By “drifted peacefully off to sleep” I mean I fell asleep sitting up working with my laptop on my knees, and The Professor entered a snore volume contest without ever losing his grip on the TV remote control.

We know how to do Saturday night away from the kids right.

When I woke up Sunday morning, an hour later than I’d meant to, with my phone in one hand, showing an unsent text, and my laptop with a half-finished column in the other, I had a feeling that “according to plan” was not going to apply very well to that day.

After I peeled the keyboard off of my face, I headed to the loo to…uh…welcome the morning.

My eyes were still half shut walking into the enormous bathroom, and remained that way while I stumbled around, and then completed my…uh…business.  About midway through my hand washing ritual I realized my eyes had finally sprung to life.  And, staring at my reflection in the enormous mirror over the sink I realized that my hair had sprung to life, too

I had what looked to be the collision of an angry sheep and an insane porcupine on top of my head. What’s more, with every passing moment, the monstrosity on my head seemed to be growing larger.

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 Because Sometimes The Hair Whisperer Is Not Available...Gina's Favorites Bad Hair

I had allowed for every possible contingency on this trip.  Except one tiny one.  The Pacific Ocean.  I had completely forgotten about the great blue sea and its accompanying hair-exploding humidity.

I was concerned that if I didn’t do something fast I wouldn’t be able to squeeze out the door of the hotel room and would be trapped in there forever.

But, I had no hair supplies of any kind with me.  Nothing.  I was already so far behind schedule that dashing to the front desk, much less searching for a store, was out of the question.  Checking the large luxurious bathroom, I found that despite the fragrant soap and creamy hand lotion, this top notch hotel clearly catered to the bald, as it had not provided any hair products of any kind.

I grabbed the hand lotion and rubbed a small dollop between my hands.  It looked a lot like hair goo, so I rubbed it into the wild straw that was the ends of my hair.

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 Because Sometimes The Hair Whisperer Is Not Available...Gina's Favorites Bad Hair It did not work like hair goo.

Somehow the hand lotion managed to make my hair look greasy and yet frizzier and puffier at the same time.

I rushed into the bedroom and wailed to The Professor, “What am I going to do?  My hair is a complete mess?”

The Professor gave my mane the once over twice before saying matter-of-factly, “Didn’t it look just like this yesterday?”  I would have killed him, but we were already running late.

I was so preoccupied with tearing through our luggage in hopes a flatiron had spontaneously materialized in one of our bags that I didn’t notice The Professor had invaded the bathroom until he was on his way out.

I’ll spare you the details about what he did in there (why should anyone else be made to suffer?), but I think he was legally required to file an environmental impact report.  I had to air it out for a full five minutes before I could even go in there to check for other victims.  It took 10 minutes for my eyes to stop burning and watering, which was both uncomfortable and producing extra humidity which my hair did not need.

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 Because Sometimes The Hair Whisperer Is Not Available...Gina's Favorites Bad Hair

While I was waiting for the bathroom to return to “safe for human occupancy levels,” I put on my audition outfit.

I’m familiar with the “clothes shrinking while hanging in the closet” phenomenon.  But, this was my first time facing “clothes growing while hanging in the closet” phenomenon.  Somehow, while hanging in the closet all night my clothes had grown larger.  Especially my pants.  And even though I’d only had them on for an hour the day before they were clearly a size too big and would not stay up.  So, to keep my pants up, I had to stick out my stomach and kind of tuck my rear under.

As I pondered the clothes that were apparently trying to swallow me I noticed a large red line across my chest, clearly visible in the V-neck of my blouse.  I moved closer to the mirror to examine it, and realized that it was a big, wide, dark red scratch.  I had absolutely no idea how it had happened.  Naturally, every shirt I’d brought was a V-neck.

I looked like I was trying to be a candy striper or had been in a fight with a tiger.  Excellent.

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 Because Sometimes The Hair Whisperer Is Not Available...Gina's Favorites Bad Hair I dabbed a little concealer on it, and managed to make it appear 3-dimensional and much more noticeable.  I considered wearing my blouse backward, but figured the tag would give me away.

While putting on my eye makeup I discovered the 12-hour eye shadow I’d bought had real staying power, as advertised.  Unfortunately, I discovered it after the eye shadow applicator slipped out of my hand, bounced off of my eye lid, and somehow managed to trace a semicircle around the outside of my left eye as it slid down my face.

After trying to brush, wipe, and wash off the dark charcoal colored powder, I was left with what looked like a first-class shiner.  Coupled with my chest wound, disorderly tresses, and giant clothes, my black eye gave me the appearance of one who had just escaped from a brawl at the docks.

I was sure the producers would be wondering, “Who’s the potbellied dandelion lady who’s been in a bar fight?” when I walked in.

The Professor looked at me as we were heading out the door, opened his mouth, and then shut it without speaking.  Sometimes silence is golden.  Sometimes it’s  life preserving.

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 Because Sometimes The Hair Whisperer Is Not Available...Gina's Favorites Bad Hair

Well, apparently a potbellied dandelion lady who looks like she’s been in a bar fight looks a lot like a harried mother, which is what I was auditioning to be, because the producers cast me.

Or, maybe they just liked my new shoes.

I always get a new pair of heels for things like this.

Just in case.

Because sometimes The Hair Whisperer is not available.

And, I need to provide a distraction.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

Ever had it rain disasters when you’re trying to look your best?  Shoot me a comment.  I look forward to hearing all about it.

Photos courtesy of Stock.xchng – Used with permission

If The Shoe Fits It’s Probably Missing

If The Shoe Fits It’s Probably Missing

by Gina Valley

 

Dear Children,

I appreciate you leaving me two of my shoes when you left for school this morning, although I must admit that, selfishly, I would prefer that they match.  Well, maybe no one will notice that I am wearing one flip flop and one running shoe with my suit.  I’ll just try to keep my feet under the conference table during my morning meetings.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Gina Valley If The Shoe Fits It’s Probably Missing High HeelsI don’t know who took my high heeled, black pumps that I placed next to our front door last night.  I was attempting to shave a few minutes off of my departure routine this morning, knowing that I would be rushing out the door after shipping you all off to school.

It’s not the first time one or more of you has chosen to entertain my shoes with a non-sanctioned outing.

Girls, I have told you I don’t want you wearing my high heeled shoes to school.  You’re too young to put yourself through that kind of pain to fit in.  Just hanging out with the other girls at school should provide you with plenty of opportunities for pain at this point in your life.

Boys, I know the spike heels are perfect for pounding holes in the field to dig for worms at recess.  But, as the principal explained to you the last time, if you get caught sneaking pointy, sharp objects like that into school in your backpack, it will be considered a weapon, and you will be suspended for 3 days.  Again.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Gina Valley If The Shoe Fits It’s Probably Missing High Heels

I don’t see why the worms or I should be punished just because we didn’t have any spoons in the flatware drawer for you to sneak to school to dig with.

So, whoever has custody of my shoes, please take time to wipe off any traces of worm guts, Jello, or any other detritus, and return BOTH shoes to my shoe rack on the porch before it gets dark today.  Searching for them in the yard in the dark always results in the unnecessary deaths of many snails and the unnecessary screams as a result of those deaths that wake up our neighbors unnecessarily.

Thank you for your cooperation.

And, please, keep your eyes peeled for my left pink flip flop and right running shoe.  It’s really hard to pull off a graceful gait wearing two different shoes.

Fashionably yours,

Your loving mom

 

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

How’d your morning go?  Was it smooth sailing or quick sinking?  Shoot me a comment.  I’m looking forward to hearing all about it.

Check out these other Letters To My Family for more laughs.  I’ll meet you there:

You’re A Big Help…Not!

Off-loading Zone Ed

Gooey Trash Ed

Please Don’t Eat the Chocolate Chips!!!

Fridge Ed

Remember, the extra click to get there counts as cardio.

 

Because Sometimes The Hair Whisperer Is Not Available

Because Sometimes The Hair Whisperer Is Not Available

by Gina Valley

I had what looked to be the collision of an angry sheep and an insane porcupine on top of my head.

Now there’s something you have to understand about my hair.  My hair has a life all its own.  It’s rather contrary sometimes.  Frequently quite sassy.  I suspect that it might be a teenager.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Gina Valley Hair Whisperer Make Up Clothes Audition Wardrobe Traveling Bar Fight DocksSo, when I have a calm hair necessitating occasion, I call in The Hair Whisperer.

The Hair Whisperer is magical.  I don’t know what she does, but somehow she changes me from out-of-control dandelion to poise-filled business woman.  Even my posture and grammar are improved.

The really cool thing about The Hair Whisperer’s magic is that, as long as I don’t get it wet, after she’s worked her wonder, my hair will stay perfectly for up to 4 days.  Maybe even more.  I’m not sure, because 4 days is as long as I can go without going to the gym (I think I’d need a note from her detailing my hair style preservation mode to get to skip it more than that).

So, since I had a weekend filled with meetings and auditions last week, I stopped by The Hair Whisperers Grotto to have her work her magic Friday morning, secure in the knowledge that her efforts would mean my hair would look great all weekend.

And, perhaps even more importantly, I wouldn’t need to lug 100 pounds of hair stuff around with me on my trip.  The only hair-related accessories I brought were my brush and my satin pillowcase (a must to keep hair from tangling).

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Gina Valley Hair Whisperer Make Up Clothes Audition Wardrobe Traveling Bar Fight DocksThat Saturday I arrived at my first audition about a half an hour early, giving me plenty of time to change into my audition outfit.  I have to admit I was less than completely thankful for the small sedan we’d rented while I was contorting myself in the front seat, changing into my audition outfit.  But, I got my outfit on, and I figured I could count the contorting as a yoga session.

My hair, still very much under The Hair Whisperer’s spell, required only a quick shake and toss to be ready to impress.

The audition went well.  I talked.  They laughed.  All according to plan.

After the audition I repeated my contortionist act, changing out of my audition outfit, in order to preserve its pristine condition for the following days’ audition.  All according to plan.

We drove, albeit in heavy traffic due to some very selfish drivers who decided to overturn their vehicles right next to the freeway (some people will do anything for attention), to San Francisco in preparation for my audition there the following morning, grabbed some dinner, and checked into our hotel.  All according to plan.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Gina Valley Hair Whisperer Make Up Clothes Audition Wardrobe Traveling Bar Fight DocksThe Professor and I ate take out on the bed, and then drifted peacefully off to sleep.  By “drifted peacefully off to sleep” I mean I fell asleep sitting up working with my laptop on my knees, and The Professor entered a snore volume contest without ever losing his grip on the TV remote control.

We know how to do Saturday night away from the kids right.

When I woke up Sunday morning, an hour later than I’d meant to, with my phone in one hand, showing an unsent text, and my laptop with a half-finished column in the other, I had a feeling that “according to plan” was not going to apply very well to that day.

After I peeled the keyboard off of my face, I headed to the loo to…uh…welcome the morning.

My eyes were still half shut walking into the enormous bathroom, and remained that way while I stumbled around, and then completed my…uh…business.  About midway through my hand washing ritual I realized my eyes had finally sprung to life.  And, staring at my reflection in the enormous mirror over the sink I realized that my hair had sprung to life, too

I had what looked to be the collision of an angry sheep and an insane porcupine on top of my head. What’s more, with every passing moment, the monstrosity on my head seemed to be growing larger.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Gina Valley Hair Whisperer Make Up Clothes Audition Wardrobe Traveling Bar Fight DocksI had allowed for every possible contingency on this trip.  Except one tiny one.  The Pacific Ocean.  I had completely forgotten about the great blue sea and its accompanying hair-exploding humidity.

I was concerned that if I didn’t do something fast I wouldn’t be able to squeeze out the door of the hotel room and would be trapped in there forever.

But, I had no hair supplies of any kind with me.  Nothing.  I was already so far behind schedule that dashing to the front desk, much less searching for a store, was out of the question.  Checking the large luxurious bathroom, I found that despite the fragrant soap and creamy hand lotion, this top notch hotel clearly catered to the bald, as it had not provided any hair products of any kind.

I grabbed the hand lotion and rubbed a small dollop between my hands.  It looked a lot like hair goo, so I rubbed it into the wild straw that was the ends of my hair.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Gina Valley Hair Whisperer Make Up Clothes Audition Wardrobe Traveling Bar Fight DocksIt did not work like hair goo.

Somehow the hand lotion managed to make my hair look greasy and yet frizzier and puffier at the same time.

I rushed into the bedroom and wailed to The Professor, “What am I going to do?  My hair is a complete mess?”

The Professor gave my mane the once over twice before saying matter-of-factly, “Didn’t it look just like this yesterday?”  I would have killed him, but we were already running late.

I was so preoccupied with tearing through our luggage in hopes a flatiron had spontaneously materialized in one of our bags that I didn’t notice The Professor had invaded the bathroom until he was on his way out.

I’ll spare you the details about what he did in there (why should anyone else be made to suffer?), but I think he was legally required to file an environmental impact report.  I had to air it out for a full five minutes before I could even go in there to check for other victims.  It took 10 minutes for my eyes to stop burning and watering, which was both uncomfortable and producing extra humidity which my hair did not need.

While I was waiting for the bathroom to return to “safe for human occupancy levels,” I put on my audition outfit.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Gina Valley Hair Whisperer Make Up Clothes Audition Wardrobe Traveling Bar Fight DocksI’m familiar with the “clothes shrinking while hanging in the closet” phenomenon.  But, this was my first time facing “clothes growing while hanging in the closet” phenomenon.  Somehow, while hanging in the closet all night my clothes had grown larger.  Especially my pants.  And even though I’d only had them on for an hour the day before they were clearly a size too big and would not stay up.  So, to keep my pants up, I had to stick out my stomach and kind of tuck my rear under.

As I pondered the clothes that were apparently trying to swallow me I noticed a large red line across my chest, clearly visible in the V-neck of my blouse.  I moved closer to the mirror to examine it, and realized that it was a big, wide, dark red scratch.  I had absolutely no idea how it had happened.  Naturally, every shirt I’d brought was a V-neck.

I looked like I was trying to be a candy striper or had been in a fight with a tiger.  Excellent.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Gina Valley Hair Whisperer Make Up Clothes Audition Wardrobe Traveling Bar Fight DocksI dabbed a little concealer on it, and managed to make it appear 3-dimensional and much more noticeable.  I considered wearing my blouse backward, but figured the tag would give me away.

While putting on my eye makeup I discovered the 12-hour eye shadow I’d bought had real staying power, as advertised.  Unfortunately, I discovered it after the eye shadow applicator slipped out of my hand, bounced off of my eye lid, and somehow managed to trace a semicircle around the outside of my left eye as it slid down my face.

After trying to brush, wipe, and wash off the dark charcoal colored powder, I was left with what looked like a first-class shiner.  Coupled with my chest wound, disorderly tresses, and giant clothes, my black eye gave me the appearance of one who had just escaped from a brawl at the docks.

I was sure the producers would be wondering, “Who’s the potbellied dandelion lady who’s been in a bar fight?” when I walked in.

The Professor looked at me as we were heading out the door, opened his mouth, and then shut it without speaking.  Sometimes silence is golden.  Sometimes it’s  life preserving.

Well, apparently a potbellied dandelion lady who looks like she’s been in a bar fight looks a lot like a harried mother, which is what I was auditioning to be, because the producers cast me.

3-14-13hOr, maybe they just liked my new shoes.

I always get a new pair of heels for things like this.

Just in case.

Because sometimes The Hair Whisperer is not available.

And, I need to provide a distraction.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

Ever had it rain disasters when you’re trying to look your best?  Shoot me a comment.  I look forward to hearing all about it.

By the way, I’ll be at Listen to Your Mother in San Francisco on May 12.  Grab some tickets and pop in to check out my new shoes.  And, to giggle with me and the rest of the cast.  Hopefully, I won’t have a shiner that day.

Oh The People You’ll Meet!

Oh The People You’ll Meet!

We were in a crowd of nearly 10,000 at an open audition this week that I’d promised I’d take my daughter  to, all day, jammed together like cattle (hence the name “Cattle call”).  We met lots of people.  Most of them were friendly folks filled with good humor and common sense.

Most of them.

Some, well, not so much.

We met a lot of people.  Many from the first category.  Some from the second.  You be the judge of who is from which.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Gina Valley Auditions Crowds PeopleMs. Chimney:   In front of us was Ms. Chimney.  She was a joy.  There’s nothing quite as uplifting and refreshing as sucking in the chunky scent of stale cigarettes carefully blended with insidious B.O.   I was wishing I had a big bottle of Febreze.  Or two.  Or a barrel.  Foul doesn’t even begin to describe it.  The fact that she cut in line to get in front of us was just the icing on the repulsive cake.

After about 20 minutes of deeply enjoying her presence, she disappeared.  We were filled with hope.  And oxygen.  Our lungs stopped burning.  Our chest stopped hurting.  Our eyes stopped tearing.

But, our both our hope and our respite was short lived.

She came back.

Stronger.

Apparently, the stroll she’d taken was cardio-based enough in nature to rekindle her natural…Essence de Eeeww.  She was Frito Foul Extreme when she returned.  And, lest we suffer the pang of withdrawal, she had restocked on cigarette smoke.

She continued to take her pungent potency renewal breaks every 15 – 20 minutes all day long.  She was stinky, but she was consistent.

Can’t Find My Group Guy :  Periodically we would be treated to a monologue by Can’t Find My Group Guy.  There was actually several Can’t Find My Group Guys of various shapes, sizes and age.  But, they all had the same 2 things in common.  They were trying to use their cell phone to locate their group, and they were not experiencing success.

Here’s some of what they said.  The other side of the conversations is not hard to imagine.

Where you at?

I’m right here.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Gina Valley Auditions Crowds PeopleI’m by the trees  (there were 1000’s of trees fairly evenly dispersed throughout the area).

I’m by the palm trees (evenly spaced up and down the street for as far as you can see in both directions).

I don’t see you.

Did you change clothes?

I’m next to the red tape (a mile of red tape is marking the edges of the walkway down the side walk through the center of the crowd).

I’m in the middle.

I’m by the doors (there were doors in at least 8 different locations around the stadium we were surrounding).

Did y’all move, Baby? (this should be read with a slight whine throughout, and a crack in the voice near the end).

I’m not sure if any of the Can’t Find My Group Guys ever found their groups, but at least they all had cell phones to call 911, if necessary.

Mr. Freebie:  In general, Mr. Freebie was hard to see clearly.  Most of the  time he was just a blur as he came flying by, stepping on the heads of children and throwing the elderly out of his trajectory on his quest to nab one of the freebies tossed into the crowd.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Gina Valley Auditions Crowds People

It’s absolutely amazing what he’d do for a free beanie or t-shirt.  If it’s both, take cover.  He’s willing to kill for that free stuff.  He’d knock you down and stab you in the eye for a free pencil without the slightest hint of remorse.  You’ve probably seen him at Lakers’ or Yankees’ games.

Ms. Clueless:  Ms. Clueless was obsessed with her makeup and her lip gloss.  She wasn’t even there to tryout.  She was just hanging out with her friend who was there to audition.  Every five minutes or so she’d ask her friend if her eyeliner was ok.  Her friend always said that it was.

Ms. Clueless would then pull out her hand mirror from her enormous filthy, yellow, quilted fabric bag, and check her face herself.  Clearly, she was never satisfied with what she saw, as she invariably pulled out an eyeliner and re-lined her eyes.

She would then throw the eyeliner angrily back into her bag (it must have said something nasty to her while she was applying it), and then proceed to root about in her bag again.  After a few minutes she would pull out an ancient tube of lip gloss and ever-so-carefully apply it to her lips, which, by the way, were perfectly shaped.

The thing is, I’m certain that no one else noticed her perfectly shaped lips.  I’m quite sure no one was focused on the quantity or placement of her eyeliner.  I know no one noticed whether she was wearing lip gloss.

This would probably be true no matter what, as most people were pretty focused on being ready for their audition.  But, it was especially true in Ms. Clueless’s case because she had, and I’m not even exaggerating, at least, AT LEAST, 20 different piercings on her face.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Gina Valley Auditions Crowds People

Maybe more.

Now I’m not bagging on piercings.  If you want to punch a hole in your face it’s certainly your right to do so.   I’m not going to judge you for it.

I’m just sayin’ that perhaps, PERHAPS, if you have chosen to ignore the whole “less is more” principle and have gone with the “more is more” attitude, and decide to punch 20 or 30 holes in various locations all over your face, be aware that you don’t need to worry about slightly less obvious accentuating choices.  Ms. Clueless needs to clue-in.  Trust me, no one is going to notice her eyeliner.  Ever.

Mr. Megaphone:   Mr. Megaphone works for the production company.  He is, apparently, unable to speak without the aid of a megaphone.   He uses it to address the crowd, the crew, and even his assistant, who is always standing right next to him.  He’s great fun, and I’d kind of like to go over to his house for dinner just to hear him say grace with that megaphone.

Guitar Guy:   Now personally, I liked Guitar Guy.  He was fun to listen to.  But, he was breaking the clearly stated, oft repeated “no musical instruments” clause of the “What Not To Bring” part of the audition terms.   I suppose at first look that seems like a silly rule, but when one considers the space limitations and the movement that is required, it becomes clear that the “no musical instruments” is a good restriction to have.

Humor Funny Humorous Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Parenting Mom Moms Dad Dads Child Kid Kids Children Son Sons Daughter Daughters Brother Brothers Sister Sisters Grandparent Grandma Grandpa Grandparents Grandfather Grandmother Gina Valley Auditions Crowds People

This was clearly not clear to Guitar Guy, however.   In fact, when Mr. Megaphone bellowed through his megaphone to Guitar Guy, “Hey! Lose that!  No musical instruments!” and Guitar Guy answered, “It’s not an instrument.  It’s a guitar,” it became apparent that many things are not clear to Guitar Guy.

There was also the girl who kept putting hair spray on her eyebrows, the man wearing 5 inch stiletto leopard heels, a plethora of women (and men) who thought “open call” meant “bra optional” who opted against although they should have opted for the bra.

Always fun to meet new people.

I wish I’d asked that guy where he bought his heels.  Oh well.  He’ll probably be at the next audition anyway.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

Met any fun people in a crowd?  Have you been a fun person in the crowd?  Shoot me a comment.  I’m  looking forward to hearing all about it.

As always, thanks for reading and laughing with me.

Shoes, Everyone?

Road trip!!!

The OCD in me was stressing all week because we couldn’t head out at 4AM to “get a jump on the day,” which tells me I am turning into my father.  But, Daughter#3’s leg wound check-up this afternoon took precedence, as it should have.

Humor Funny Parenting Moms Dads Kids Children Sons Daughters Brothers Sisters Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Road Trip Prayer Giggle Shoes Inspection Hunger Hug Country Music Hard Rock Beyonce Single Ladies Cows Sheep Foul Odor M&M’sAfter her doctor gave the thumbs up for her to travel, albeit with a “no swimming for 3 more days” clause (no problem, not like my parents live on a lake. Oh wait, yes they do! She will not be happy staying away from the water!), we loaded up the van with what seemed to be an unending pile of “necessities,” insisted everyone try to off-load one more time (we’ve had to stop to find a loo before we even got to the freeway before), and piled into the van.

Today’s leg of the trip has been heavy on the “road” side of the road trip.  Not too many “trips,” though.  We did have the privilege of joining every single car in southern California on the 5 Freeway as we attempted to head out of Los Angeles. It’s so nice when the freeway goes from rapid traffic thoroughfare to Friday night parking lot and block party.  I just wish I had remembered to bring beach balls!

We like to start every trip with a giggle and a prayer.

The Professor blessed us with a prayer before he hugged us all good-bye.

Daughter#1 blessed us with a giggle while we were still in our driveway.  She didn’t so much pass the “Shoe Inspection” in that she didn’t so much have any shoes.  As she dashed back into our house for footwear I was overwhelmed with an uncontrollable need to roll my eyes.  After all, we instituted the pre-blast off shoe check for toddlers.  She will be 16 years old next month.  Another reminder that no matter how grown up they are, they will always be my babies.

We were on the road almost 5 minutes before we had to hit a drive –thru because several of my pack members were “starving!”  I don’t know what they use toHumor Funny Parenting Moms Dads Kids Children Sons Daughters Brothers Sisters Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Road Trip Prayer Giggle Shoes Inspection Hunger Hug Country Music Hard Rock Beyonce Single Ladies Cows Sheep Foul Odor M&M’s design vehicle interiors, but whatever it is it triggers instant hunger in my pack.  Heck, just vacuuming out the van the other day made everyone come in and want a second dinner!

Son#1took the first shift driving, which was awesome for me.  I was happy to miss dealing with the stop and go traffic heading out of LA.  On the other hand, following our “the driver picks the radio station” rule meant I wasn’t allowed to complain about his country music selections (have I mentioned that country music is the devil?).  Apparently, the country music appreciation gene skips a generation, because I hate it, but my parents and all of my kids are huge country music fans. Of course, turnabout is fair play so my hard rock was blasting during my shifts.

Somehow we landed on a hip hop station for a while and everyone sang Beyonce’s “Single Ladies” at the top of our lungs.  Nothing like a sing along to bring on the giggles! Our dancing was somewhat hampered by our seat belts, but we made a valiant effort!

After we finally got out of LA it was nice to drive through the farm land, and to see all of the cattle.  I love how “Cows!” gets hollered by everyone every time we come upon another herd.  It reminds me of when we were on a road trip and Humor Funny Parenting Moms Dads Kids Children Sons Daughters Brothers Sisters Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Road Trip Prayer Giggle Shoes Inspection Hunger Hug Country Music Hard Rock Beyonce Single Ladies Cows Sheep Foul Odor M&M’spassing through a rural area when Sons#3 & 4 were 2 and 3 years old.  They were so delighted with all of the farm animals we were passing that they were hollering every time they saw some.  I remember hearing Son#3, always an organizer, explain to Son#4, “When I see a cow, I’ll say ‘Holy cow!’ When you see a sheep, you say ‘Holy sheep!’”  Still makes me giggle every time I see a sheep and remember it.

At one point today a terribly offensive vapor in the van caused us to open the windows for fresh air. Our relief was short-lived, though, as we rapidly realized the source of the nasty invading entity was outside, and far from relieving the smell, opening the windows served to boost the foul odor to the point that we could actually taste it.  After the feeling in our tongues had come back, Son#1 remarked that, “They really should be required to plant a stand of mint around whatever that was!”  Don’t worry. Our vision is almost back to normal now, too.

Revelations For The Day:

A watched odometer never turns.

No matter how old they are they will always be your babies.

Cruise control and air conditioning are gifts from God.   So is Dramamine!

If you shine a flashlight on a yellow bag of M&M’s in the van at night half of the occupants think something is on fire and freak out a little.  If you laugh when they freak out, they get cranky.  Really cranky.  I’ll try not to laugh next time.

Question of the day:

Is a King-sized bag of M&M’s a healthy dinner?Humor Funny Parenting Moms Dads Kids Children Sons Daughters Brothers Sisters Family Life Love Laugh Laughter Road Trip Prayer Giggle Shoes Inspection Hunger Hug Country Music Hard Rock Beyonce Single Ladies Cows Sheep Foul Odor M&M’s

It has peanuts, which are protein, and a variety of colors, which I am pretty sure I remember my dietician saying is an indication of vitamins.

The squealing you hear in the next few minutes is due to the milk shake stop I’m surprising my pack with.

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

What made you laugh on your way through today?  Shoot me a comment – I’m looking forward to hearing all about it!

Drills We Actually NEED To Have

Drills We Actually NEED To Have

by Gina Valley

My kids’ school had a fire drill the last day of school.  I’m not sure they really benefitted from that one.  Let’s face it, few of us ever benefitted from the monthly fire drill at school beyond getting some extra time to mess around and maybe to push off a math test.

But, since school has primed our kids to be ready for drills, why not take advantage of their readiness and run some drills that will actually help life run more smoothly this summer?Humor Funny Parenting Moms Dads Kids Children Family Life Love Drills Practice Shoes Beach Loo Bathroom Bathing Suits RV Recreational Vehicle Barf Vomit Summer Dinner Late Cell Phone Lost Protect

Not sure what to drill your family on or how to go about it?  Fear not! My kids have stomach flu this week, so, since I was up all night, I put this handy dandy drilling list together for you.

Shoe Retrieval Drill - Just once I’d like to leave the house with my entire pack wearing shoes.  I know that’s never going to happen, so I figure the next best thing is to work on their shoe retrieval skills.

Begin this drill after everyone is securely buckled into their seats in the family vehicle. At the sound of the key entering the ignition family members are to rapidly exit the vehicle and run back into the house to get a pair of shoes.  Extra points will be awarded for any runner who retrieves 2 of his or her own shoes.  Double point bonuses are scored if the two shoes match each other AND currently fit the runner.  Laces present or working zippers in both shoes earn a triple bonus!

Beach Loo Drill - Why is it a child’s need to visit the facilities increases directly with the distance your beach blanket is from those facilities?

Begin this drill by finding the perfect spot for your beach blanket. You’ll know you’ve found the perfect spot when the building for the facilities appears to be a mere dot on the horizon.

Humor Funny Parenting Moms Dads Kids Children Family Life Love Drills Practice Shoes Beach Loo Bathroom Bathing Suits RV Recreational Vehicle Barf Vomit Summer Dinner Late Cell Phone Lost ProtectEveryone should be wearing uncomfortable shoes that fill easily with sand or cheap flip flops that come apart every two or three steps.  Immediately prior to beginning the drill each participant must be thoroughly soaked with ocean water to maximize stickiness and chaffing.

At the sounding of the whiny “I gotta go now!” all participants must rush directly to the facilities, running with their legs crossed the last half of the journey.  Moreover, each participant must wait out in the wind for his or her turn to enter the facilities, as no matter how many potential depositories there are only one is ever functional.

Each wind-chilled, soaked and chaffing participant must enter the facilities, remove his or her wet bathing suit, which undoubtedly has decided to become a permanent part of the participant’s body, complete off loading, file the paperwork, and re-don his or her bathing suit.

Note:  participants must complete the in-facility part of this drill while simultaneously holding his or her breath as protection from the grievously noxious odors, and complaining constantly about the unsanitary state of the facilities and lack of proper supplies.

Bonus points given for getting the wet bathing suit back on in such a manner that all vital areas are covered on the first try.  Double bonus points are given if the suit never touches the grungy bathroom floor.  Triple bonus points are awarded to any participant who brought along his or her own paperwork supplies.

RV Barfing Drill – What is it about camping in an RV that invariably causes a young family member to need to suddenly, violently, often projectile-ly re-visit,Humor Funny Parenting Moms Dads Kids Children Family Life Love Drills Practice Shoes Beach Loo Bathroom Bathing Suits RV Recreational Vehicle Barf Vomit Summer Dinner Late Cell Phone Lost Protect usually into the only pair of shoes his or her dad brought?

Begin this drill with the sound of a wretch.  Everyone is to make their way quickly out of the RV, hiding hard to clean items, such as shoes or school books along the way, as they proceed rapidly to the designated outdoor approved revisiting location.

Bonus points are given for weaving through the shoe gauntlet near the RV bedroom without tripping, and for not falling off those nasty black metal stairs-of-death on the way out.

Note: This drill can also be adapted for time spent in SUV and passenger cars, or for specific re-visiting vacation needs, such as for Son#4 who revisits anytime he eats anything orange.

Emergency Dinnering – Why is it so impossible to have dinner at a decent hour during the summer?

Humor Funny Parenting Moms Dads Kids Children Family Life Love Drills Practice Shoes Beach Loo Bathroom Bathing Suits RV Recreational Vehicle Barf Vomit Summer Dinner Late Cell Phone Lost ProtectStart this drill at 8:45pm, when it is getting dark and you’ve realized no one ever made, much less ate, dinner because it hadn’t started to get dark yet.  Use only the food you ALWAYS have on hand but never use, including that lone can of garbanzo beans, the slightly wilted bag of lettuce, 4 stiff tortillas, a can of SPAM, whatever is in those two spice jars with no labels, and that rapidly dehydrating, half un-wrapped block of cheddar in the back of the meat drawer.

Bonus points are scored if you have company over to eat dinner with you the night of this drill. Double bonus points are earned if you are able to grill the entire meal prior to running out of propane.

Emergency Cell Phone Call Drill – Why is it that we can never locate our cell phone for those once a year moments when we actually really Humor Funny Parenting Moms Dads Kids Children Family Life Love Drills Practice Shoes Beach Loo Bathroom Bathing Suits RV Recreational Vehicle Barf Vomit Summer Dinner Late Cell Phone Lost Protectneed to make a call with it, like when someone’s bleeding or there’s a fire or we’re out of ice cream?

It’s smart to run this drill periodically throughout the year.  Start by having one of your children either shove your cell phone down a sofa or fire up a raging game of Angry Birds.  At the sound of the alarm assume a life threatening emergency is occurring.  As quickly as you can, locate and retrieve your cell-phone WITHOUT having someone call it.

Bonus points if it’s the first cell phone you pull out of the sofa cushions.  Double bonus points if you can figure out how to shut off Angry Birds so that you can make the 911 call without those bloody birds squawking in the background.  If your cell phone has 21% or greater charge at the time of the drill you earn a triple bonus.

Let’s be prepared out there!

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

Are you prepared for summer “emergency” situations?  Drop me a comment.  I look forward to hearing all about it!

What They Don’t Sell At The Flying J

What They Don’t Sell At The Flying J

by Gina Valley

Yesterday I decided it would be a great idea to herd my pack into our van and drive 3 hours to visit my great, great uncle and aunt.  It seemed like such a simple thing to what I now realize was my clouded mind.  About half way there we stopped atHumor Funny Parenting Flying J Truck Stops Shoes locating organization Pizza Moms Dads Kids children Family Life love a Flying J Truck stop.  Or, as my kids call it “the big bathrooms with the candy store.”

I’m sure you’ve seen one  – giant mega-gas stations on steroids glowing along lonely stretches of highway in the middle of nowhere.  Part fast food place, part mini-mall, and part bath house.

The Flying J is a strange little microcosm of our great, big world.  One can browse rows of magazines and leather-wear on the way to pick up a pizza while listening to an announcement that “Shower 5 is now ready.  Please proceed to the shower.”

Over the years and through many family road trips I had formed the opinion that the trusty Flying J truly sells a bit of everything.  I found out yesterday, not so.

So, what does the Flying J NOT sell.  Well, at this particular location, about 10 miles south of the middle of nowhere, it does not sell foot apparel of any kind. No shoes. No sandals. No crocs. No boots. No flip flops.  Not even a single pair of slippers or shower shoes. No foot adornment of any kind.

Perhaps you wonder why this fact is significant.

Is it because I’m attempting to placate what many of you know is my pretty serious shoe addiction?  No.

Could it have been an attempt on my part to re-stock my gift closet with more biker related items before the holidays?  No.

Was I simply curious about the average truck driver’s shodding of choice?  No.

So, why was I standing there asking Bertha May, the manager, about possible footwear purchasing opportunities in the sprawling complex yesterday?Humor Funny Parenting Flying J Truck Stops Shoes locating organization Pizza Moms Dads Kids children Family Life love

Well, it seems that my 10 year old son was working very hard to follow the rules, and as so often happens, that completely backfired and came back to bite us on the rear.

He announced, about an hour and a half into our little jaunt toward redneck land, that he had his brand new shoes securely on his feet when he got into the van to leave, and during the visual shoe check by the shoe officer of the day (Son#1 had that honor yesterday).

But, Son#4 had forgotten his pillow and had dashed back into our house to get it. He made a point of telling me, “like you always tell me to, mom, I took them off before I went in” (we leave our shoes outside to limit the dirt we accumulate in our house. It’s still gets filthy. I hate to imagine how dirty it would be if we left them on. We might not be able to find the furniture!).

In his haste to return to our van Son#4 forgot his shoes.  That’s right – ran right past them and out to our van without noticing his lack of shoes.  Apparently, no one else noticed either (I was still in the house turning off the 43 different lights that were left on, so I feel I’m off the hook for not noticing his stocking feet).

Naturally, like any good mother, upon hearing his announcement I fired up my smart phone to track the closest shoe retailer (yes, there’s an app for that).

There wasn’t a Target for hundreds of miles.   There wasn’t even a WalMart on the radar, and they’re everywhere!  I’d been thrilled to spot this Flying J nearby.  Yet, here I was at the only possible retailer for at least 100 miles in any direction, and they had no shoes.  What to do?

No problem.  Great, great uncle and aunt are 91 and 90.  They can’t see that well.  Although they would be horrified to know my kid had traveled with no shoes, they didn’t necessarily

have to find out.  It occurred to me thatHumor Funny Parenting Flying J Truck Stops Shoes locating organization Pizza Moms Dads Kids children Family Life love through creative shoe shuffling and staggered entrances, we might be able to get the entire pack into their house without the shoe deficiency ever being detected.

So, as we pulled up to their sprawling home Son#4 jumped out of our van looking a bit like a clown wearing Son#2’s shoes (the largest shoes in our family), and Son#2 had on Son#1’s.  After they had greeted great, great uncle, they went into the house to greet great, great aunt, leaving, as is our custom, their shoes on the porch.  In the meantime all three of their sisters emerged from the van and distracted great, great uncle while I ran Son#1’s shoes back out to him.

The house was packed with family, but we managed to get everyone in without anyone noticing our deficit of shoes.  Each time we needed to go outside we simply repeated the shoe shuffle until everyone had taken part. It worked fine.  No one had to know.  We were off the hook.

Before we knew it, the day had passed, and it was time to go home.

As we began the shoe shuffle to head back out to the van I marveled at our successful shoe issues cover up.  It was fun.   It was successful.  It was over.

Naturally, it was the offending kid himself who sold us out.

As Son#4 was heading out the door to the van, great, great aunt said, “I hope the drive home isn’t too bad.”

Son#4 answered immediately, “Well, it’ll be a lot shorter because we won’t have to stop to try to buy me shoes to wear!”

Too bad great, great aunt’s hearing is perfect!

Laugh Out Loud!

-gina

What was left at home during your last family trip?  I’d love to hear all about it, so please shoot me a comment.