Archives for June 2014

How NOT to take a shower

Based on recent experience, I can tell you how NOT to take a shower.   It was one of those “if it can go wrong, it did” kind of experiences that should form the basis for a really funny scene in a romantic comedy.

Only, I wasn’t laughing.

The background.

We spent the better part of a week in a small cabin in McCall, Idaho.  I’m not sure what their normal June weather is like, but the week we were there they had a low close to freezing and a high around 45.

My ideal range of temperature is 60-80.  If it’s cooler than 60, I normally want a sweater… and a hat… and a scarf.   Unfortunately, I had packed my summer wardrobe. I had ONE long sleeved shirt and a thin (see through) sweater.

My husband’s ideal temperature is 40-70.  When we stay in hotels, he cranks the air conditioner all the way down and sleeps on top of the covers.  The boys and I are under all the blankets and shivering by morning.

In the cabin, hubby opened all the windows and griped every time I turned on the heater.

I spent the week wearing my entire wardrobe at once.

I was sporting a hot pink long sleeved t-shirt, a teal blouse, and an orchid sweater all at once and I didn’t even care.  They all coordinated with the floral comforter I stole off the bed and wore like a giant poncho.

On our final day, I had had enough. I decided to take a shower and try to warm up.

The shower started with promise.

I closed the bathroom door and sealed up the crack under the door with an extra towel. I wanted every ounce of warm steam that I could capture.

For about five minutes, it was pure bliss.  I could feel the warm shower soaking in and I knew I would FINALLY be warm.    I lathered up my hair for a good shampoo and was actually looking forward to shaving my legs.

That’s when disaster struck.

Without warning, my beautiful warm shower turned ice cold.   It was about 40 degrees outside, and I swear the water was colder.

I shut the water off and yelled for my husband.

I’m standing there with shampoo horns on my head and rapidly cooling water dripping everywhere.

The first thing he does is open the door and let all my lovely steam out.

Hubby: Did you holler?

Me: I’m out of hot water.  I was in the shower for five minutes.  Did the cabin run out of propane?

Hubby: I’ll check.

He wanders off to check, leaving the door open for the cold air to rush into the bathroom.  I’m still standing there with cold shampoo bubble dripping EVERYWHERE.

Hubby: Nope, the propane is fine.

Me:  Well, turn the heater on please?

Hubby: What good will that do?

Me:  Um… I won’t be as cold when I get out?

He turns the heat on and proceeds to grumble about how stuffy the cabin is.  I know this because he was standing outside the OPEN BATHROOM WINDOW griping about it.

Me:  Hey…

Hubby:  What.

Me: I still don’t have hot water.

Hubby:  Oh, I turned the dishwasher on.  I don’t think there’s enough water for the shower and the dishwasher.

I’m still standing there with shampoo dripping.  I have goosebumps everywhere, and the smell of my shampoo has started to really annoy me.  It’s lavender, and I’m not a big fan of lavender at the best of times.  This is NOT the best of times.

Me:  Hey!

Hubby:  Yes?

Me: So are you going to turn the dishwasher off?

Hubby: It’s almost done.  Just give it a few minutes and you should have hot water again.

The shampoo smells like a cross between wet dog and old lady house.  I’m starting to shiver.  I check the time.  Ten minutes pass.  I still don’t have hot water.

Me:  Hello?

Hubby:  Now what?

Me:  Um… I’m still in the shower.

Hubby:  I’m going fishing.

I count to 100.  The smell of old lady and wet dog has put me off anything with a purple label.  I give up.  I rinse the shampoo out of my hair with cold water.

By the time I get out, the rest of the cabin was a toasty warm.  Only the bathroom was still cold.  Unfortunately, the entire place smelled like lavender to me.  As soon as I could pull clothes on, I ended up opening windows just to get the smell of wet dog out of the place.

That’s when I remember…

… I don’t have a blow dryer.

Needless to say, I didn’t shave my legs.  Hubby didn’t notice, but if he had actually had the nerve to say something, I was going to tell them it was goosebumps.

Life on the Road – part 2

It’s day 20 of life on the road. We’re still not done with our road trip.

(In honor of the iffy wifi, I’m skipping a graphic today. Sorry.)

But here’s what I know so far:

10 things about life on the road

  1.   WIFI is underrated.  Quality WIFI – the kind where you can actually see all the photos in your Facebook stream without cussing – is hard to come by in hotels.  Since I hit 50% of my phone’s data plan in the first week of our trip, I haven’t even had the luxury of 4G most of the time.  Sigh.
  2. Insomnia is ten times harder in a hotel room.  You know how when you have a really bad case of insomnia you just give up and go watch TV on the couch (or get some soothing chamomile tea)?  Yeah. That doesn’t work so well in a hotel room.  It’s more a case of laying still listening to the rest of the family snore. [Read more…]

Vacations are a time for worship

Vacations don’t always leave room for God. With two kids in tow, mine quickly are filled with frantic activity, drama, and way more junk food than I care to admit.

But yesterday… [Read more…]

this boy. oh my.

This boy.

Right now he’s laying half on top of me. His limbs twitch in his sleep and he likes to snore in my ear.  But I wouldn’t miss this.

Yesterday was hard. His legs are short and the mountain air was thin. He struggled to keep up. The food was strange. The air is dry. He tried hard to hide behind his handheld screen.

There were tears…

I love this boy


…and laughter.

He fights me on everything.

Not out of dark rebellion, but more as a sparring partner. He is strong willed and quick witted. Our battles are more a way for him to measure his strength. He is like a young lion cub practicing his fighting moves against the elder of the pack.

He questions.

He obsesses.

He demands perfection and struggles to comprehend Grace.

And then this.

Sprawled in the darkness of a hotel room, he slumbers in peace. Sweetness. Gentleness. A calm before another storm.

I breathe deeply and remember.

This boy. He calls me mom.

Life on the Road – part 1

It’s only day three of our road trip, and life on the road is already proving interesting.

road trip - life on the road

Getting out of Texas always takes too long.  Leaving Houston and driving west means we have 12 to 16 hours in the car before even cross the state line.

That’s a LOT of time in the car.

Mom…. are we still in Texas?

My kids love to ask me if we’re still in Texas. They ask it every thirty minutes until we actually cross the state line.  They do this even though we have an official “crossing the state line” celebration when we finally arrive in another state.

By extension, we celebrate EVERY state line we cross.  We also celebrate crossing time zones, the continental divide, and the Mississippi River.

It goes like this:

Me: Hey kids… look up! Here it comes.

Them:  Huh? What?

Me:  Look! We’re about to cross the state line. We won’t be in Texas any longer.

Them: Oh.

Hubby:  There is is! Now we’re in New Mexico.

Twenty minutes later:

Them: What state are we in? Are we still in Texas?

Texas trivia:

Not all of Texas is in the Central Time Zone.  El Paso is actually on Mountain Time.

You would know this if you ever watch national election results.  They mention it every ten minutes while they wait for the El Paso polls to close.

Since we’re home schooling, I took full advantage of the whole time change thing. It’s part of the 5th grade math checklist.  My kids can now do really fun word problems about time zones in their heads.

Don’t tell my kids. They didn’t realize they were doing school. 

Life on The Road

Now that we’re out of Texas (finally), we can slow our pace. We spent most of the last two days in the car (or at various convenience store bathrooms).

That means there is time for stopping at the rattle snake farm (eek).

That means that we can pull off and take photos of the amazing mountain views.

That means we can stop and buy corn or tomatoes from the roadside stand and eat them right then and there.

Life on the road can be fun.


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