A Day Late and A Dollar Short

That’s not really true.

I AM a day late but I stole some moolah from the Mr.’s wallet so I’ve got a dollar.

Anyway, yesterday was a special day for our family.

Well, for all of us except Dad.

No, to Dad, yesterday was just another day.

Just an ordinary-like-all-the-others kind of day.

But to the rest of us, it’s special because HE is so special to us.

He’s our rock.

Our protector.

Our spiritual leader.

The wise old head.

The umbrella holder.

He’s DAD.


Dad & Shelby

Dad and Shelby

He’s never been one to get over-excited about his own birthday.

He can take ‘em or leave ‘em.

I don’t really know how to process that.

I love me a birthday.

I start mentioning my birthday MONTHS before the actual event.  Just to be sure no one forgets and I’m treated like a queen.

Well, maybe not a queen, more like the court jester, but still.

I love to celebrate ME!  🙂

{By the way, my birthday is about 3 months from now so start shopping!}

Dad is soooo not like that.

So I’ve decided that in honor of this great man’s birthday, I’d share a little Dad story with you.

I hope I haven’t shared this before but since I’ve managed to stack up a fair amount of birthdays myself, I can’t really remember.

So here goes:

Back in the olden days of the 70’s and 80’s my family practiced that long extinct ritual of the family supper.

I’m sure you’ve heard of this before.

It’s where someone, usually the mom, cooks a meal using pots and pans and skillets and such and then the whole family sits around a table and eats and talks together.

I know, it seems weird now.

No microwave.

No TV.

No electronic devices.

Just talking to each other and enjoying a good meal.

Unless it was hamburger gravy; then it was just a lot of griping.

That stuff was NASTY!!

Our family was quite large by today’s standards, there were six of us in this tiny little kitchen and once you sat in your seat, you didn’t get up.  It’s not that getting up from the table was forbidden.  No, it was because the kitchen was so small, there was no way to get out of the room until EVERYBODY got up!

I remember one night we were sitting at the table and for some reason, I was sitting by Dad.  This was unusual because Molly always did, and still does, like to sit by Dad.

I don’t know why, really.  He usually had her squalling by the end of the meal.

He had this thing where if you put your elbow on the table, he would pick up your arm and bang your elbow on the table.  Not super hard; just enough to make you about four/thirds mad.  He didn’t do it because he minded elbows on the table, it was just fun to crack that funny bone.

I know, I don’t get it.

Boys are weird.

Anyway, Dad did this to Molly almost every night and she would fuss and she would cry and the next night, she was right back by his side.

So this particular night, I was sitting by Dad and we had a delicious meal of country ham.

Now, for those Northern folks who may be reading this, let me explain country ham.  It’s ham that’s been cured with salt before it’s smoked.

And no, we didn’t smoke it; we never could find papers big enough to roll it in!  haha

Sorry, sometimes my McLean comes out in me and I can’t stop it.

The thing about country ham is that it is super salty.

And very yummy!

You just can’t beat country ham, biscuits, fried potatoes and gravy.

So this night I was happy as a clam, eating my country ham, minding my own business.  But there was a grisly part on the side of my piece of ham that I cut off and laid on the side of my plate.  No biggie.

Toward the end of the meal, Dad noticed that piece of meat and says “Are you gonna eat that?”

Before I could answer, quick as a blink of an eye, he popped that tough piece of ham in his mouth.

All I could do was look at him and say “No, but I sucked it”.

Sure enough, when I realized that piece was too hard for my little teeth to chew, I sucked out all the salty goodness and laid the now bland piece back on my plate.

Well, when he realized I had been sucking on that meat rind, he just about lost it.  He jumped up from the table but, of course, there was nowhere to go!

He was trapped!

Dad learned a valuable lessen that night.

He’s never swiped a piece of food from a plate since that day.

At least not without finding out more about where that food has been!

Happy belated birthday, Daddy!!!




The Wearing of the Green

st pattys

This morning as I was getting ready for work, I remembered a long ago St. Patrick’s Day that I’d just as soon forget.

It was a bad day.

It was a VERY bad day.

And it was, without a doubt, the most painful St. Patrick’s Day of my entire existence.

That year, St. Patty’s Day fell on a Sunday.

This was back in the day when people actually dressed up for church.

No jeans and t-shirts.

No shorts and flip-flops.

Men wore a tie and/or sports coat and women wore dresses or skirts. Apparently, I didn’t own a green dress OR skirt so I put a little green pin on my blouse and headed to the Lord’s house.

After Sunday School, I was headed to the sanctuary when I suddenly got the urge to visit the water fountain.

BIG mistake!!

There in that little, crowded hallway, as I’m pushing my way through, I encounter a young child on a mission.

What was the calling on this small child?

Was it the Lord’s work?


This kid thought it was up to him to pinch anyone he saw not wearing green.

Couldn’t he see my pin?

Didn’t he know I was participating in the St. Patrick’s Day tradition?

Well, apparently NOT!

That little booger pinched a plug outta my arm!

I mean, he really got in there and got me good!

I may or may not have been bruised and I most definitely WAS scarred…..for life!

After what I’m sure was a perfectly lady-like scream, I believe I may have threatened that precious monster with a beating.

I’m not sure.

I blacked out a little from the sheer pain.

Of course, I blamed his parents for his poor behavior.

No, that’s not true.

His momma was doing the best she could with that one.

No, the blame fell squarely on the dad.

This kid was a chip off the old blockhead!

But I learned a valuable lesson that day.

When it’s St. Patrick’s Day, you put on a big ole green shirt and avoid the pinches like the plague!

And that’s what I did today.

So, whatever became of that “brat”???

Why, he grew up to be one of my most favorite people in the whole wide world.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day, Ryan Tingle! 🙂




The Thunder Rolls…….

The other day I got a completely random text from the Mr. that had me somewhat concerned.

He wrote: What was that stripper dudes name?

Now, my concern is really two-fold.

#1 – why is the Mr. asking about a male stripper?


#2 – why did I not hesitate one iota with the name????

For those of you who are now ALSO concerned, let’s go back………..

The year was 2005.

I had just taken a new job at the local hospital in our tiny town in western NY and quickly learned that I was working with the greatest group of girls on the planet.

I mean, we just had a ball.

Even though we complained about the work and the boss and all that, I loved every minute of time spent with those crazy Fierce’s. Of course, this group was only made stronger when Dawn joined our little band of misfits (also known as Plankton, but that’s a story for another day).

We could not have been more different but Jane, Erica, Kathy & Dawn became my sisters……………..whether they like it or not!!!

At this little hospital, there was a mental health unit.

Now, I tried my hardest to avoid this area.

Mainly because I was scared they would think I was an escapee and try to keep me.

But there were many times that we had to take medical records up to that unit and if I couldn’t think of an excuse fast enough, I had to go up with one of the other girls to deliver the records.

One day, the girls were talking about a particular male counselor on the MH unit.

The girls told me he was a “dancer”.

Ok. That’s cool.

No………..an EXOTIC dancer!!

Oh my!!!

Now, before you let your mind wonder to what you may or may not know about exotic dancers, let me just assure you that there is nothing, NOTHING!, about the shape of this fella that screams DANCER!!!!

And to think that he gets paid to dance exotically just is beyond comprehension.

But if the girls say it’s true, who am I to argue??

I can’t for the life of me remember his right name but I do recall his stage name………..


Oh yes.


Not long after I learned this tidbit of information, Chocolate Thunder left the job at our hospital and went to a facility in the next town to serve as a counselor there. But he still called our office from time to time to request records on his patients.

Do you know how very hard it is to talk to someone with a somewhat professional demeanor while Erica is leaning over the back of your chair loudly whispering in your ear “It’s Chocolate Thunder!!! CHOCOLATE THUNDER!!!”.

I’m a giggler anyway, so it was oh-so-very-hard to keep my composure.

Thankfully Chocolate Thunder is a super nice guy and if he ever heard us, he didn’t let on.

I don’t know whatever happened to good ole C.T.

Maybe he’s put away his dancing shoes.

(If exotic dancers even wear shoes)

But I will never, ever forget him.

I am curious, though, why the Mr. remembers Chocolate Thunder.



He Flies Through the Air With The Greatest of Ease

The funniest things happen when the Flying Zolnowski’s are getting ready for bed.

I don’t know why these things happen.

Getting ready for bed is a serious matter.

It’s the last step before you accomplish the day’s main goal: BED!!

It’s the best part of the ding-dong day!!

But sometimes the Mr. likes to race.

Sometimes he gets a little silly.

Sometimes he’s just four-thirds ig-nernt!!

But most always he cracks me up!!!

Last night was no exception.

Except he wasn’t racing.

He wasn’t being silly.

He was just telling me a story about something that happened at work.

I was standing at the dresser listening to this riveting tale of IT hi-jinks while the Mr. was behind me over by the bed getting undressed.

When what to my wondering eyes should appear but the Mr. falling across the room.

It was like a slow-motion fall.

He just kept falling and falling and falling.

I’m seeing all this through the mirror so I turned to check out what was actually happening and there he was.

On his knees.

Crashed into the rocker and cedar chest.

Jeans around his ankles.

What in this world?!?!?!?!

And then it starts.

The laughter.

Not mine…………HIS!!

He laughs and laughs and laughs some more.

He falls back on the floor in a fit of laughter.

Pants still at his ankles and just cracking right up.

Are you ok????

What happened?

Where you trying to race me?

Did you just get tangled up?

No, he says.

“The Lord’s just trying to tell me I’m too big for my britches.”

But never fear.

Taj went over to check on his dad and the dog who NEVER licks the Mr. gave him a big ole smooch right on the mouth!!!

Now THAT was funny!!



A Bird in the Hand


The Mr. loves breakfast.

No matter what time of the day he wakes up, be it early morning or noontime, he prefers to start with breakfast.

And he’s an egg man from way back.

The dude loves him some scrambled eggs.

But now, once he’s had breakfast, he doesn’t want it again that day.

Never for supper.


Now, I, on the other hand, only really like breakfast at night.

For supper.

The mere thought of eggs in the morning just gags me!!

We are quite the match, huh?!?!?!

You can imagine the delight the Mr. experienced when I first introduced him to the Waffle House.

Yes, I introduced him to Waffle House because there is not one Waffle House to be found in the Great White North.

Can you believe that????

Do those Yankees have any idea what they are missing???

Apparently not!

Now, I know, it takes a certain amount of sophistication to regularly dine at a Waffle House. But the Mr. and I have just that kind of refinement! We fit right on in!

When we moved to KY four years ago, the Mr. was super excited that there was an actual Waffle House in our town. So not long after we got settled in, we popped on over to check it out and have some delicious food.

Now the beauty of the Waffle House is that you can have EITHER breakfast or lunch any time of the day.

But I must say, if you’re the least little bit picky about things like cleanliness and the such, you’re better off to go around 2:30-3:00 in the morning. The place looks a lot classier at that time of night.

Either that or your just too dang tired to care.


Well, way back then, our local Waffle House was……how do I say………..NASTY!!!

And the Mr. vowed he would never go back!

And he didn’t.

At least not to the Frankfort Waffle House.

Oh, we’ve eaten at the ones in Georgetown and Lexington on numerous occasions.

The man just can’t pass up a Waffle House.

Well, a couple of weeks ago, I convinced the Mr. to give our Waffle House another try.

After all, a lot can change in four years.

Plus I didn’t want to wait for a table at Cracker Barrel because we MUST have breakfast!!! 🙂

And I’m glad to report that things had greatly improved!!! We were tickled.

{Sad that we are so easily pleased.}

So this weekend, we decided to give it another go.

I especially wanted Waffle House because GRITS!

I’m a grit girl!

I don’t know how you like your grits but the very best way to eat them, in MY opinion, is lots of salt, pepper, butter and crumbled BACON!!!

Soooo yummy!!

And so we find ourselves at a little booth by the window, eating our delicious food and enjoying the day when BOOM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Something hits the window above our booth.

Then what looks like a wad of brown paper towels falls on my hands and bounces onto the floor.

What could it be????

Who is throwing wet paper towels at us????

I look down.

That ain’t no wad of paper towels.

THAT’S A BIRD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

A BIRD!!!!!!!!!!!

A BIRD HIT MY HANDS!!!!!!!!!!!

WHILE I’M EATING!!!!!!!!!!


AT THE WAFFLE HOUSE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Are you feeling my stress here???

Do you get how troubling this was????

I mean………….a BIRD…………INSIDE………..

TOUCHED ME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Praise be unto the Lord, though, that I didn’t immediately start to gag, as I’m known to do.

But I did leave that poor Mr. sitting all alone while I went into the bathroom and scalded my hands with hot water and scrubbed with steel wool to get those bird germs off me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I will give credit to the Waffle House though.

By the time I got back from the bathroom, holding my clean hands up like a surgeon walking into the OR, they had scooped up that dead bird and took it out. And we also got a free breakfast out of the deal.

Sadly, there sat my bowl of grits with perfectly crumbled bacon on that avian contaminated table!!

So when the waitress asked if we wanted any additional food to go, that polite Mr. said “No, thank you”  but his grit-loving wife said SURE!!

I’ll have grits, bacon and a Diet Coke!! 🙂

Wasn’t the same.


The Truth is Out

A few months ago, I was invited to an online party by the Mr.’s cousin, Kim. It was for a company I didn’t know too much about but it intrigued me.

It was a Jamberry party.

I have always enjoyed having my nails “done”, especially so that I can show off my collection of what the Mr. calls gaudy rings.

So I bought some of the Jamberry nail wraps so give them a try.

{For those who don’t know, nail wraps are basically vinyl stickers for your nails.}

When my order arrived, I was super excited but also nervous about trying them.

What if it was hard to do?

What if I messed them up?

What if the Mr. finds out how much I spent???

So after about a week of them sitting in the box, I decided to take the plunge.

I started with a pedicure to be on the safe side. I figured, if they didn’t look good, I could always cover them up and no one would be the wiser.

Now, let me explain the difficulties of toes.

Or more accurately, chubby girl toes.

Problem #1 is that they are more difficult to actually reach than slim girl toes.

I have a co-worker who is so thin that she can sit with her knee practically up her nose. I can hardly even get my leg up in the chair, let alone up my nostril.

{Not that she DOES that. She just could, if she so chose.}

Problem #2 occurs when said chubby girl is also Mrs. Magoo and can’t actually SEE her toes so good.

I mean, I’ve got bifocals.

Because my eyes require two sets of focals.

But my feet land somewhere between too close and too far away to make those silly glasses useful.

I soldiered on and got those wraps on pretty well, I thought.

I was proud.

First toes

{I have now completely grossed out my brother!! Sorry, Marcus!}

The next morning I woke up feeling something weird.

Between my toes.

Something was caught!!

Yep…………the wrap from my teeny-tiny pinky toe was now wedged BETWEEN two toes!!!

I chuckled to myself but figured that nobody would notice that little pinky guy.

A couple of days later, I asked the Mr. if he would help me change the sheets on our bed.

There is nothing better in life than getting into a bed with fresh, clean sheets.


I can actually change the sheets myself but most of the time I’m also fighting off the little red man who believes that there is nothing better in life than clean sheet……….to roll around on!!!

Because what’s better than Taj-smelling sheets????

{And now I’ve totally grossed out my cousin! Sorry, Debbie!}

So as we are removing the dirty sheets, the Mr. spots something in the middle of the bed.

“What’s that???”

Taj and I go in to investigate.

MY TOE!!!!

“Your TOE????”

My TOENAIL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

“Your TOENAIL?????????????”

Well, not my REAL toenail.

The wrap that was ON my toenail.

I didn’t even know it was missing!

I grabbed that little toenail wrap and as I looked up into the face of my beloved, I saw the exact moment that realization hit.

I saw, with just a look on his face and a slight shake of his head, that he now knew the truth.

“Girls are weird”.

And life will never be the same.


Things That Go Bump In The Night

I realize I’ve been absent from this here blog thing for a little bit.

But that doesn’t mean that nothing funny has been happening. I’ve got some funny stuff in the hopper.

Ok…….I don’t really have a hopper.

But if I DID, it would be full of funny stuff!!!

I’ve been wanting to share this for a while but I needed to get the proper permissions and make sure all the names were changed to protect the not-so-innocent.

Ok……..I’m not changing the names at all but I DID need to get permission before sharing because as soon as this happened…………..as SOON as it happened………….the Mr. forbade me from sharing it with the whole interweb!!!

I hate when he squelches the funny!!!

But now I think it’s safe to share.

I think!!

Anyway, a few months back, my sweet insomniatic dogs woke me up in the middle of the night to go see if there was anything fun going on outside.

Well, one wanted to go roam the out of doors, the other just wanted a midnight snack.

That one was a lot like his mother (RIP Shad!).

When I finally got everybody trudged back up the stairs, I turned around to make sure I was leaving no man behind and what in this world was that……………A HUGE SPIDER!

Now I know that some of you believe that I’m given to exaggeration but let me just tell you, it was the biggest spider I’ve ever seen.


And it was right beside the door to the hall closet.

There was no way I was leaving that thing there so I immediately went to the bedroom to get a fly-swatter.

Yes, there is a fly-swatter in my bedroom.

And one in Shelby’s bedroom.

And one in the laundry room.

And one in the Mr.’s office.

Because, let me tell you, the LAST thing you want is to have some big ole yucky bug standing between you and the place where you keep the fly-swatter.

I feel like I’m prepared for any fly-swat emergency!

Well, almost any.

Because when I got that fly-swatter, I realized that the handle was too short.

Too short by at least 10 feet!!!

I was gonna have to get waaaaayyyyy too close to that spider to kill it.

And what if it jumps??????

I shudder just thinking about it.

Friends, it was a BIG spider!

So, I thought and thought.

“What is the one thing in our bedroom that the Mr. swears will kill anything?”


{Yes, he’s convinced I’m slowly killing us all with hairspray.}

I grab my big ole can and start spraying.

That spider doesn’t even flinch.

{But his hair was LOVELY!}

At this point, I’m all out of ideas.

So I ever so gently wake the Mr. with “Honey, I need you to come kill a spider. Bring your gun.”

Thankfully, that got his attention and he hopped up right away.

He came out into the hall and I think contemplated just burning the house down with us and that spider still there!


To his credit, he got a lot closer to that thing than I did, but when he whacked it with the fly-swatter, it crawled under the hall door!!

He flung open the door and was faced with a bunch of “stuff” that his loving wife stored in the closet because her too-big house wasn’t near big enough for all her junk!!

Let the fussing begin!!

Oh well, this time, in this place, with this spider, he was right!!

He was able to find the spider under an old wreath.

He found it because you could HEAR that big ole thing walking around!!!

So he stunned it with Tresemme until he could flail the tar out of it!!

After flushing it down the toilet, he came back to the bedroom with a frightening question……

What about it’s friends?

What about it’s family?

What about it’s BABIES???????

Could there be more where that guy came from???

Lordy, I hope not.

But while I was ready to lay back down and go to sleep, the Mr. was on the hunt!!!

He looked around the closets.

He looked around our bed.

He even looked under the bed.

And that’s when it happened!!!

Did I mention that the Mr. sleeps in his all-togethers?

Well, when he got on the floor in his undies to check under the bed, Taj took that moment to brush his hairy body up against the Mr.’s nakedness.

The Mr.’s reaction still makes me chuckle to this very day!!!

And that’s when I was told to never, ever share this story!! 🙂