July 01, 2014

vacuum cleaners. me and rachel.

I broke the vacuum cleaner at the Hippo car wash the other day. One second it was vacuuming, and the next second the hose just broke in half. I don't even know what happened. But the girl there said it was okay, and that I didn't have to pay for breaking their stuff.
Those vacuums at the Hippo have amazing suction. You know how in the movies when people are sitting happily in an airplane, and suddenly a zombie or something rips the airplane in half and everybody gets sucked out of the plane in, like, 3 seconds? That's how the Hippo vacuums are. I'm pretty lazy and typically don't clean my car out. And even when I do, I just aimlessly wack the vacuum around, and hope it gets some of the dirt out before I quit.
But you can't be aimless with the Hippo vacuums. They will suck you right out of that airplane, man. I speak from experience. I accidentally vacuumed my face the first time I went there, and I will never forget it. My face has never been so clean. I mean, that sucker exfoliated me (see what I did there?).
Anyway, what I'm trying to say is that one time my mom made me watch a Twilight Zone episode with her, and there was a canister vacuum cleaner in it that ran around killing people. Like, it just sucked the life right out of people. Fortunately, some lady had a really big butcher knife and she stabbed it to death. I will never own a canister vacuum cleaner. Ever.
So the moral of this story is twofold: Never buy a canister vacuum. Also, if you want to clean your face really well, I know a place.

One time Rachel and I went to Pompeii. That's right. The real Pompeii. We had just spent two weeks in Greece and another in Rome. This was going to be the highlight of the trip. But when we got off the train in Pompeii, it was approximately 5,000 degrees below zero, raining, and the wind was tearing around like a tornado.
I was like, Let's leave.
Rachel was like, Sunny. No. We only have two hours until we have to catch the train back. You'll be fine.
But she was wrong. I wasn't fine. I was dying.
So I was like, Maybe Mount Vesuvius will erupt again. You'll be sorry then. Because sometimes you just have to be three years old.

Here's a picture of Rachel having a grand time.

 Here's another picture of her having fun.

Here is a picture of me crying. (Updated: Rachel pointed out that I am actually holding hand warmers on my face in these pictures. I totally forgot about those hand warmers. I don't see how I did though. They saved my life.)

Here is another picture of me still crying.

 In my defense, I wasn't the only sad person at Pompeii that day. These people were also sad.

Rachel pointed out that they were also dead. I pointed out that at least they died warm.

Speaking of Rachel.
One time, Rachel's brother decided to sneak up behind her, and catch her by surprise.
In .8 seconds, he found himself on the floor with Rachel's hands around his throat.
One time, my brother-in-law decided to sneak up behind me, and catch me by surprise.
In .8 seconds, I peed.
That story pretty much sums up all of mine and Rachel's difference in one little nutshell. She will kill you, I will pee on you.

In case you're wondering who Rachel is, she's one of my BFFs, and we're pretty much joined at the hip. We went to Tubbs Hill, and summoned our eagle powers the other night, during Ironman. Because if one ever needs eagle powers, it's while watching Ironman. I was ready to die just standing on the sidelines. I don't understand why people would want to experience that much physical exercise. What's wrong with staying home and watching Netflix? Although I must admit, watching those guys cross the finish line was fantastic.

Those eggs were a lie, Esqueleto. A LIE! They give me no eagle powers! They give me no nutrients! (Name that movie)

In other news, I recently discovered I am a cow. Or at least related to one.

I too, get stressed out when I am separated from my friends.  I'd like to publicly say to all of my friends: There's no escape. Sorry.

She Who Suddenly Feels A Close Kinship With All The Cows Out There

June 22, 2014

wherein the girls boost my self esteem and other stuff

My niece, Mik, posted this sign on her bedroom door:

At age nine, Mik has sorted out the important things in life.
I thought it was a great idea.
I made one for my front door.

You might have a wreath or a welcome sign on your door. Or maybe one of those As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord plaques.
I don't.
So Kirby Dude and Jehovah's Witness Person, don't come knocking at my door again unless you're bringing me a pizza.

Molly will be five next month. I felt sad about this last night, and asked her how she felt about growing up so quickly. I held up four fingers, holding my thumb down, Molly, I wish you could be four forever.
She was like, I don't do dat. Looking at me disdainfully.
I was like, What?
I don't hold my fingers like dat. The disdain deepened. I felt like a loser.

I go like dis.

So. It has come to this. Our four year old baby is making up her own gang signs.
And in case you noticed the "chocolate" on her upper lip, it isn't chocolate. She took a pan of cookies out of the oven, and tried to get a closer look at those babies. She kissed the pan. She didn't even cry. I would've cried. I sat on my flat iron one time. I cried.

Anyway, Molly is really into being a maiden these days. I have no idea where she came up with this idea. She does her own thing.
So this morning she's all, Sun, can you do my hair low like dis? Dat's how maidens do it.

Gangsta maiden.

And then she saw this old picture of me:

Let me bring that in a little closer for you. I don't want you to miss anything. Not pictured are the lace gloves.

That's from Old Fashioned Day at our church in AL, when I was about 19. Yes. We had Old Fashioned Day, and we would all dress up like Little House on the Prairie, and we mostly all hated it. I have no idea what the point was. Sometimes when you're a Baptist, you just do random stuff like that. Anyway, I wasn't doing Little House on the Prairie, I was a Jane Austen fan. That's way cooler. Some kids might go through an Emo phase, or maybe Goth, or Punk. I went through a Jane Austen phase, and I wore those clothes out in public.
I went to Walmart like, Don't cha wish your girlfriend was hot like me? Don't cha?
To my surprise, none of the guys there asked for my phone number. Uncultured swine. (Name that movie)

Back to Molly. She found that picture of me.
So this morning, as I was fixing her maiden hair, she asked me about that picture.
Sun... were you a maiden back then?
Yes. Yes, I was. In fact, I was the fairest maiden of them all.
I wish I could describe the look of love and admiration in her eyes as she stared up at me. She literally caught her breath. And then she sighed the happiest sigh ever.
I knew it. I knew you were a maiden.

And that, my friends, is why I'll always be one of the coolest people on this planet in Molly's eyes. Once upon a time, I was a maiden. That's all that matters.

Molly also drew this picture of me:

She perfectly captured my are-you-kidding-i'm-going-to-punch-you-in-the-eye face.
And then she told me, Can you write Brave and Sunny on it? Because it's for you. That's you being a brave princess. Like the movie.
A brave princess and a maiden. You see why I like it when this girl comes over?

My sister, Shelly, sent me a jean dress awhile back. I really love it. Hello, it's Anthropology. What's not to love?
I wore it to church this morning, and Lily came into my room and stared at me with the same adoration Molly had looked at me with earlier.
Oh Sun, oh Sun, oh Sun. I love your dress. You're so BEAUTIFUL.
I was like, Thank you, and mentally congratulated myself on being so beautiful.
It's so beautiful, Sun. You look just like a farmer!
I stopped congratulating myself.

And then I went to church, and one of my friends told me I looked like Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz.

Here's a picture of me in my Farmer/Dorothy dress. And Lily adoring it:

You might be a hot mama. Or a sexy beast. Or America's Next Top Model. Whatever. I'm a Fair Maiden Farmer. Eat your heart out. There can only be one.

And last of all, I leave you with this:

Because sometimes, when your name is Molly and you can't hold it, you just gotta drop your pants in the hallway and make a crazy run for it.

The Fair Maiden Brave Princess Farmer Dorothy. Amen.

June 03, 2014

i hate all the cats that poop

I don't hate very many things. Actually, that's not true. I hate a lot of things. Or, at least very much dislike them.

Like really, super cold, freezing weather. I don't wanna be a popsicle.
Folding my ever gigantic pile of laundry. I have a pile hidden in my closet right now if anyone wants to come fold it for me.
Almost all vegetables. They taste like dirt.
Anyone who messes with me when I'm asleep. I won't hurt you if you wake me up, but in my heart, I will think all sorts of bad things about you.
The sound of people eating. I have Misophonia. It's a real thing. If you're going to be around me, please starve. Just until I leave.
Running out of coffee.
Running out of creamer for my coffee.
Not having coffee.
Going to a friend's house and they're all, Yes! We do have coffee! and then they pull out Folgers. That's not coffee. That's brown stuff.
Dirty bathrooms. I don't want any of that getting on me.
Petty, easily offended people. Ain't nobody got time for dat.
Anything remotely scary or creepy. Like Willy Wonka. I'm sorry, but that guy is weird, and that movie should be over in the horror genre.

After all that hating, I should tell you that I love animals. I really do. No, I am not one of those animal lovers that's like, I love my dog more than my kids. That's just weird. I don't have a dog or kids, but I'm pretty sure that if I did, I would love my kids more. And I'm not going to sacrifice myself for an animal either. A human, yes. An animal, no. If it's raining outside and I only have one umbrella, and me n' the dog won't both fit under it, guess who gets the umbrella? Me, that's who. I'll feel bad for the dog, but not enough to hand over my umbrella.
However, I do still love animals. We occasionally had pets growing up, and I always liked them. I would like to have a dog one day. And maybe other random animals like rabbits and chickens.

But there is one rule that I have with any animal: Don't mess with my stuff. In particular, don't mess with my garden.

We had this one dog when I was a teenager that I really liked. He was a happy dog. He had his drawbacks. For one, he really liked... umm... playing piggyback, to put it delicately. With anything. Pine cones. Whatever leg happened to be walking past. Clothes that he pulled off the clothesline. Nothing was safe.
But like I said, he was a smiley dog, and we liked him. But then one day I caught him digging in my flowerbeds. And then it became a regular, almost daily thing for him to go dig up my plants. Nothing I did could dissuade him from it.
Oh no, he didn't.
Our friendship ended right then and there.
And when he eventually died or ran away from home or whatever it was that happened to him, I was glad.
I know, I'm heartless. Sometimes, I'm ashamed of myself. But usually not.

So this past winter, I started noticing that some cat decided to start using the flowerbed by my front door as a litter box. I know this cat. I've liked her. I've pet her. I've even been all, Aw you're such a good kitty I love you you can come live with me but not really because my landlord would freak. 
But oh no, she didn't. Friendship over.
She even started using the planters in my back yard. The ones that I just planted heirloom tomatoes in.
War was declared on my part.
Mom and I had to dig out the front flowerbed and replace everything. And I've been trying to keep an eye on my tomatoes.

So this morning, when I was sitting on the couch reading, and this cat came up to my back door for the first time in a month or so, I told her to run for her life.

She was like, Meow.
I was like, Seriously. Go.
She was like, Meow meow meow I don't take you seriously.

So I got up and ran at the door to scare her off. She ran away like 3 whole feet. So then I chased her out of the yard.
I went back to my reading.
Four seconds later, she was back like, Meow, hello can I poop in your tomato plants?

So I got up.
I filled a large saucepan with water.
I walked out on the back step.
That infernal cat was so happy, Ohmagosh. I knew you weren't serious. I shall poop in your flowerbeds for eternity. Will you pet me? And she rolled over onto her side so that I could pet her better.
I was like, Why, yes. I shall pet you. You shall love it. And I poured the pot of water on her face.

Whereupon, she ran so fast.
Whereupon, I returned to my reading.

I have never felt so good about myself.

She Who Enjoys Pouring The Occasional Pot Of Water On All The Cats That Poop

June 02, 2014

my mini-me

Out of all of my nieces, Emma reminds me the most of myself. I mean, sometimes we're opposites, but other times we're like, basically twins (Except, she's only 9 and I'm 30. But whateva.).

She likes pink and I hate it. She loves veggies, and I hate their guts. So we aren't alike in every way.

But we both have crazy, thick, gigantic hair. Lion hair. I was braiding her hair one day, and in a surge of affection, squeezed her hard and told her, Babycake... we both have the same hair. It's like a crazy lion's mane. And kinda frizzy.
Whereupon, she promptly burst into tears.
I was like, Dude, why are you even crying? You should be happy.
So I hit her in the head with my hairbrush and told her to get used to it. So much for affection.

We're both creative. And neither of us like following directions. Which means we usually make super cool stuff that will fall apart pretty soon. But Emma, like myself, is really optimistic about the mistakes she makes. Case in point, our friend was having a baby girl. Emma loves sewing. So she took one of her old t-shirts, cut it up, and attempted to make a little hand-sewn dress out of it. She did it entirely on her own, without knowing anything about sewing. You could actually see that it was supposed to be a dress. But there was a giant pucker sewn into the front.
Emma was not deterred when I pointed it out to her. Oh, I know! I saw that. But I didn't want to resew it, so I figured it could be like ruching. No one will notice.
Brilliant. That's exactly what I would've said. Don't you love the ruching there? Took me forever to perfect it.

She likes writing and drawing pictures. She, like myself, can't draw a decent stick figure, but she, unlike myself, hasn't given up on her artistic abilities and draws me multiple pictures every week. It's usually a picture of me. Me with weird hair. Me wearing ugly clothes. Me with T-Rex arms and three fingers. Me with a giant nose. Me with flowers growing out of random body parts. Me with elephant ears. Me wearing a crown. Me with chicklet teeth. And she always writes on these pictures, Sunshine, you're so beautiful.
And I'm like, Dear God, if this is how I really look, please strike me with lightning and end my misery.

She, like myself, gets very indignant if she feels she's been truly wronged. And she doesn't forget it either.
One time, she told Rachel, I don't much like going to Aunt Sunny's house. 
Rachel was like, Oh really? Why not?
So Emma replies, Because one time she punched me right in the eye. For no reason.
I did not punch her in the eye. Okay, so I did. But it was an accident. Emma, however, still thinks I did it on purpose and still wonders how I could ever be so cruel to her super nice self.

Gift giving is her love language. Same as myself. But she is the queen of the tacky regift. She came running into my Sunday School class a month or so ago, and handed me a teeny little brown box with I love you, Sun written all over it. Aww. I opened it after she left. Inside the box was a pair of pink flower earrings... earrings that I had given her this past Christmas.
Later on, she asked me how I liked my new earrings.
Emma, I gave you those earrings for Christmas.
She stared at me blankly.
Scratched her head.
And then brightly said, Oh well! I never wore them anyway. You can have them back!
And then she beamed at me, pretty happy that she had made me feel better.
I punched her right in the eye. Accidentally.

She has the most tender heart. I don't so much. But it's amazing what you can learn from a 9 year old about tenderness. If she thinks she's hurt someone, it bothers her for days. She accidentally headbutted her cousin, Marianna one day. And while we were all making sure that Marianna's nose wasn't broken, I noticed Emma was gone. I looked around, and found her huddled in her closet, crying her eyes out. Not because of the Romulan looking goose-egg growing on her own face, but because she felt bad that she had hurt Marianna.

I was sick yesterday and couldn't go to church last night, so she wrote me a love note.
Dear Sunny, I love you. I hope you get better soon. I love you so much that I'm leaving you my love. Love, Emma
P.S. Try to come over and I have a surprise. Come at 5:00 pm or at 10:01 pm.

Leaving me her love:) And why 10:01? Why not 10:02?

She, like me, wants a happy ending. She hates sad stuff. The girls are always begging me to tell them a story, so the other day I told them a story that I read in a history book years ago. It was about some man who was tortured in Vietnam. He was held over a fire and his feet were burned off. (Okay, in retrospect, it probably wasn't the best story to tell the kids, but they asked for it.) Anyway, suddenly, Emma buries her face in my arm and starts crying.
I was startled.
Why are you crying? Are you hurt?
So after that, we watched Frozen for the ten millionth time, and I held Emma while she cried over that poor man's feet. I told her to let it go (Get it? Let it go. Because we were watching Frozen?).
I tell myself that I'm teaching them compassion. And the guy survived, by the way.

This is me when I meet someone new that I like.

I'm an unabashed friend stalker, man. Ask any of my friends. I don't apologize for it.
I love my friends. I like being with them. And sometimes I knock on Rachel's door and I'm like, Do you want to build a snowman? Come on, let's go and play...
And she's like, Didn't I just see you yesterday? Go away. (Amended: Rachel would like to point out that she's never actually said that to me. She's a lot nicer than that. What she has said was more like, Sure! But it should be a snow DALEK because that's cooler than a snowman. And then I would be like, YES! And she's right.)

Emma has a best friend. Bayley. Emma stalks Bayley. Emma loves Bayley. Emma breathes for Bayley. Emma is like, Every step you take, I'll be watching you. Oh, can't you see? You belong to me.
And then she hugs Bayley until her ribs crack (Which is something I'm often tempted to do to my own friends.).

So one Sunday morning, I walk into church and see Bayley hiding behind a chair. I had a suspicion.
Bayley... are you hiding from Emma?
Bayley's like, sheepish, Well... yes. Kinda. Do you know where she is?
She's downstairs. Looking for you. I won't tell her where you are.
Bayley looked relieved, Oh, thank you.

As I walked away, I heard Emma shriek from behind me, BAYLEY I'VE BEEN LOOKING FOR YOU!
And I turned to see Bayley's eyes widen in terror as Emma proceeded to crack her ribs.

Emma wrote this card for Bayley one time when Emma was leaving to visit family in Missoula for a few days.

I'll translate:

Dear Bayley,
If you ever leave, read this card. I love you, and you love me, right? And no one, not one single person, can break our love, right? If you got this letter on Thursday, I left on that day to Missoula. But no worries, I come back on Saturday. I love you so much. *hug hug, kiss kiss*
Your best friend Emma

I love the no worries part. Because Bayley was probably really worried. Obviously.

I love her. She's such a weirdo.

She Who Sometimes Punches Her Niece Right In The Eye For No Reason

April 19, 2014

nailed it

It's Easter weekend. I got in the spirit and made some cupcakes.
This is the very best cream cheese frosting recipe ever. Karen found it.

I also happened to come across this picture on Pinterest.

I was like, Um excuse me while I die of cuteness overload.
And I thought to myself, Self, you and Rachel should make those for your Sunday School class kids.
So then I was like, Rachel. I found the cutest thing ever that we could do for our SS kids, and they'll love it, and it will be easy. So easy. Like you don't even know.
And she agreed to make mini Easter egg pinatas with me, thereby solidifying our status as the world's most popular Sunday School teachers ever.

I have never done paper mache before, and I'll never do it again in this lifetime. It took me about 8 hours altogether just to do the paper mache part. It took Rachel and I about another 5 hours to decorate those suckers. (That doesn't include all the time I took to stop and cry and punch the wall in frustration.)
The DIY looks so easy. It's all, Mix flour and water, throw some newspaper in, coat the balloons, fill the balloons with fun stuff, glue some streamers to them. Enjoy!

They sit on a throne of lies.
It probably would've been easier to clone my own body.

But in their defense, they apparently make tons of cute pinatas all the time so it probably is that easy for them.

Anyway, while I sat there, fuming, with a couple of nailed-its to show for all of my effort, Rachel improvised and made some of the cutest Easter eggs ever.

She was like, Hey look. I made a baby chick. Peep peep.

I was like, I made this by myself.

Then she was all, Ooo and I made a fox. The fox is my favorite.

Not to be outdone, I was like, Also, I made this pear.

I finally gave up and watched her. The only egg I can take credit for is the piggy; formerly know as the pear.

Some of them have cute tails.

The parrot is my favorite.

So all's well that ends well, and tomorrow the kids will be wigged out over their egg pinatas. Rachel has mad superhero skills.

In other news, I watched Catching Fire the other day. I liked it. I also noticed that Katniss does her hair in a braid like mine. But she also has really cool face-framing layer/bang thingys that I don't have.

So I thought to myself, Self, you should get the scissors out, and cut yourself some of those face-framing layer/bang thingys like Katniss has.

So I did. But instead of looking like Katniss, I looked like I had sideburns. Long ones. Kinda like sideburn pigtails.
I was confused.
So I thought maybe curling them would help.
It didn't. I looked like a Jewish man. Not that there's anything wrong with Jewish man hair, but there's a time and a place for that and on my head isn't it.

Then I remembered that time I cut myself some baby bangs. And that other time I tried to ombre my own hair.
So I pulled out my trusty bobby pins and pinned back my new Jewish man hair. I also hid my scissors from myself.

Happy Easter!

She Who Thinks Paper Mache Should Set Itself On Fire. And Scissors.

April 02, 2014

happy april fool's day (yesterday)

My boss called me up yesterday morning and told me not to worry about coming into work.

We had a little fire last night.

Fire? Like how bad of a fire?

Pretty bad... I got myself and the dog out, but the house pretty much burnt to the ground.

Let us pause for a moment of silence here.
The house burnt to the ground. That big, beautiful, wonderful house on the river that I've been house sitting for the last several months. The house that I love and sometimes pretend is mine. It has a hot tub. And a Keurig. Both of which I love with all my heart. Crisis alert: level epic. I forgot to even ask if he and the dog were okay.


Yeah. Well...


I was smoking in bed. I think that's what did it.

At which point I stopped having a heart attack. Wait... you don't smoke... isn't today April 1st?

Whereupon he laughed like a hyena, and has since been very pleased with himself for tricking me.

It doesn't take much to trick me, man. I was told, on my 24th birthday, that my pink birthday streamers tasted like bubblegum and that I should eat some. I ate those streamers. Twice. I thought I got a bad piece the first time around so I gagged and tried a second piece. Everybody laughed like hyenas as they tried to get me to eat a third piece of "bubblegum" streamer. In case you've ever wondered, pink streamers taste like asphalt. Do not ask me how I know what asphalt tastes like. Let's just say someone told me it tasted like chocolate. Dark chocolate.

Anyway, later on I took a few of the girls home with me, and Lily and Molly decided they would tell me a few April Fool's jokes.

Molly: Hey Sun, why did the rooster cross the road?

Me: Umm... to get to the chicken on the other side?

Molly: *Jaw drops because how in the world did I know that answer to that one?* Yep, that's right.

Molly: I got a nudder one for you. Why did the chicken cross the road WITH AN EGG IN HER?!!

Me: I don't know. Because she was pregnant?

Molly: *Sighs in exasperation. Obviously bummed that I know all the answers to life's really important questions.* Yep, that's right again.

So then Lily decided to help her little sister out.

Lily: Sun. I got a hard one for you. Why did the chicken cross the road and then STOP IN THE MIDDLE OF IT?

Me: I have no idea. Why?

Lily: Because he wanted to DIE!

Well. That's cheerful. And they both sat back, triumphant that they finally knew more than me.

She Who Will Believe Pretty Much Anything You Tell Her. It's A Curse.

February 22, 2014

happy 13th and i love lucy

Today is Lucy's 13th birthday. Now Karen has two teenagers in the house. Sniff. Why do they always have to grow up? Karen and Tim are out of town, and Lucy was a little sad about that so we tried to make it special. There was a birthday brunch with lots of sprinkles, a hot oil hair treatment, and Leah made the cutest gold birthday banner.

She has the prettiest smile.

Making friendship bracelets with her sisters.

Everything is better with sprinkles.

Miss Piggett

That hot oil was really hot. I burned myself.

Leah was embarrassed about that shower cap. But I thought she was cute!

Lucy is kind. She is smart. She is tenderhearted. If she knows someone is sad, she's sad too. She weeps with those who weep.
She's motherly too, and swings babies around on her hip.
She plays the violin, and is the best at fixing hair. She can do a mean fishtail. And she has a servant's heart.
She's nerdy. She has a deep, monotone voice.
One time when we asked her what rhymed with apple, she replied in her deepest monotone, Dirt. She meant it too.
If it wasn't for Lucy, hairs would never be fixed, babies would never be buckled into their carseats, and we would laugh a lot less.

Happy first day of being a teenager, Lucy Goose!

She Who Has A Shower Cap On Her Head