Lend Me Your Ear

Ear candling can bring families together.

It’s true – my mom and I bonded over ear candling just the other day. I think it was due to the fact that I didn’t burn her hair up in the process.

She thought she had a bug in her ear and wanted me to see if I could get it out. We don’t go to the doctor for such things; we candle!

Timeout – before I get hate mail for using an alternative method for bug removal – I had an experience with a bug in my ear many years ago. It was no fun. I went to the ER and laid on a table while they dug down in my ear canal for a moth that felt like it was the size of a seagull. I’ll never again walk near an outside light at night without something covering my ears.

So, I read the instructions on the ear candle box, googled “ear candling for dummies” and got started.

I collected the necessary tools – damp towel, bowl of water, metal pie plate, candle…check.

By the time we got everything set up, it looked like she was trying to tune in life from some distant galaxy.

Mom got in place in her chair, I put the candle in her ear (yes, I got the correct end in the ear) and had her hold it while I struck the match.

I don’t like fiddling around with matches so this was a little scary, but I did it.

I lit the big end and away we went. As it burned down, I followed the instructions and kept my fingers on the candle about four inches from her head so it wouldn’t burn down too far. I knew it was time to extinguish the flame when my fingernails started to get warm.

The bowl of water, in case you were wondering, was there to plunge the candle into when we were done. I took the candle out and managed to drop it on the table – ear candles can put off quite a flame, let me tell you.

All was well though – I grabbed the flame-throwing candle off the table and dunked the burning end into the bowl. No one was harmed and mom felt that it was a success.

I can report that ear candling really works! She didn’t find a bug, but it did pull some gunk out of her ear.

She felt better and I may add “ear candling” to my resume.

The moral to this story is – don’t be afraid to try new things. Also, ear candling works as long as you’re careful and follow the directions, and keep a bowl of water handy.


Weight a Minute

I’ve never really been one to follow diets or weight loss gimmicks – so I’m a little surprised at myself. I’m trying something new in previously uncharted Doublewide territory.

I’m allowing an electronic gizmo on my phone – an app – to tell me what to do.

This magical little receptor is helping me get healthy, or so they say. It receives information that I feed it, calculates all my points, calories, fat, binomials, monomials, pie charts and the like, and then fusses at me if I veer off course. I mean, who’s the boss here? With one flick of my thumb I could obliterate this little fitness fiend.

I hold up a jelly donut in defiance.

“You’ve exceeded your fat grams today” it tells me. “What’s that in your hand?”

“It’s a donut and I’m not sorry!” I sass back. I feel like I’m getting ready to duel this thing to the death.

I haven’t lived with my mother in years, but I find myself hiding from my phone like a kid who’s about to get into big trouble. I peek out from my spot behind the ‘fridge.

My husband bemoans something he ate in a weak moment and I say, “it’ll be ok – just don’t tell the app.”

A lot of help I am.

My little fitness pal does give me break once in awhile. It calculates my steps and grants me more calories as my exercise increases. It’s kinda like getting an E for effort.

Bacon, oh how I miss you. I see a cheat day on my horizon. (I’m not telling the app)

It’s really ok to have a cheat meal once in awhile when you’re dieting. You just don’t want to make it a habit. I’m certainly not an expert, but I think you have to treat yourself sometimes to keep the motivation up.

Just don’t go overboard with it – you don’t want to undo all you’ve achieved in the first week. I started doing all this healthy stuff to support my husband who’s trying to lower his cholesterol and it’s really not all that bad. I recommend the buddy system- it can help make the journey almost fun.😊

I’m not sure the app would approve of the buddy system, though. Its M-O is more like “divide and conquer”… or duel to the death.

Jobs I Probably Shouldn’t Try


In this life, we all take different paths. Everybody has their own things they’re good at.

I’ve come to realize there are jobs I’m just not cut out for.

Do you ever hear about a job and think, “I bet that would be fun.” Me too – all the time. One of my long-time goals has been to work in a Krispy Kreme donut factory. I’ve always thought it would be a great little post-retirement gig (whenever I retire).

I think I could handle the donut thing, but there are plenty of jobs I know I wouldn’t be good at.

First up – law enforcement officer.

I admire and appreciate our police and sheriff’s deputies, but it’s not something I think I’m cut out for. I’d probably be more like Barney Fife than Matt Dillon.  Here’s me dealing with a criminal: “I know you really didn’t mean to break into that bank. Now, if you promise to do better next time…”

I probably wouldn’t be good as an EMS worker, firefighter, nurse, doctor or anything like that. I can’t do much for you when you get sick, except run out for juice and medicine. If you throw up, I will throw up right along with you. Now, if your house caught on fire I’d do my best to help. I just don’t do well in emergency situations. I saw a wreck happen one day and couldn’t even find my phone in the seat beside me to call 9-1-1. I get too emotionally involved in things.

Another job I probably shouldn’t sign up for is anything military. I like green, just not drab green. I’m grateful and thankful for all of our military, though- sa-lute!

So, maybe I should stick to jobs and hobbies that I do pretty well. I like to sing and they still let me be part of the music team at church. I like to write – especially where funny is concerned. And I do pretty well on my day job. My evaluations are always good, anyway.

I think I’ll just stick to doing what I do. That might be best for all of us.




Buyer Beware

“Mattresses Cheap!”

Should I buy a mattress advertised on a little sign on metal legs stuck in the ground by the side of the road? Are these used mattresses? Are they defective? How can they be so cheap?

There are all kinds of little metal signs along the road advertising everything from low cost wifi to real estate classes. I’m all for the little man, but I have to question something like bedding being sold on a tiny sign along the road.

Pizza, I get. Store closings, I get. I understand politicians putting up “vote for me” campaign signs that litter every four-way stop in town at election time. I don’t mind those — I just wish they’d clean up the mess after it’s all over.

What other kinds of things do we buy that are “cheap”, that maybe, just maybe we should think twice about ….. like steaks at the dollar store. Can filet mignon for a dollar really be good for you? Picture it – date night at your neighbor’s house – “I thought we’d stay in tonight. I got this great deal on steak at the Only $1 store and they had movies too. Won’t it be fun reading the subtitles?!”

I like a bargain like anybody else, but I don’t know about some of this stuff. Where does it come from? This goes right along with those trucks that drive around neighborhoods trying to sell meat out of the back. (my in-laws actually bought some of that meat one time – can  you say “tough as whit leather”)

Sometimes it’s just not worth the cheapo price when it makes you sick (beware dollar store pizzas, too. I know this from firsthand experience…) or you have to keep replacing said item. Now, dollar buys are not all bad. I love their holiday cards, bags and candy!

Just remember, boys and girls, a bargain may not always be a bargain. Especially if you fall for the ‘ol “let’s make it look exactly like the name brand item” only to get home and find out your Post Toasties aren’t Post at all, they’re Past Toasties. Check the label, people – check the label.


You Might Be Antique

If you want to feel old, go to an antique store.

Browsing through antique stores can be enjoyable, entertaining and downright funny- until you realize… all the stuff you grew up with is in there. My favorite dolls, games and glass McDonalds cups are in those stores.

Some of the antique offerings are a little weird too… you’re browsing through the bric-a-brac (an old term for stuff) and you get this weird feeling, all of a sudden, that you’re being watched. Then you slowly turn around to find a doll dressed in a mink coat and hat giving you the once-over. Its glass eyes staring at you. It kind of looks like it’s trying to talk – almost pleading with you to take it out of there.

And the clowns – the sinister looking clowns that perch on shelves at the top of old staircases in antique stores, just waiting to scare you. That’s a real thing that can happen.

Antique malls are all the rage now. They’ve popped up everywhere. Although I seldom find anything in them that’s affordable. All that stuff we had is worth a fortune now – we should have kept it. Not the clowns – I don’t know that anybody wants those things.

Now, before I get hate mail from people who own and/or go to antique stores – I go to them, too. I like to browse down memory lane from time to time.

There’s one particular antique mall near us that plays Cajun music all the time. That one’s my favorite. The music makes it more festive and I don’t feel like I’m such an “antique” too.

Oh Kitty Cat

I will not be licking my kitty cat, thank you very much.

I don’t know how the barn cats would react to something like that.

If nothing else good comes from Facebook, it does offer an abundance of weird topics to blog about.

The current video being shared is about this plastic/rubber “thing” you can use to lick your cat. What? I guess it’s to help show your love, therefore forging a human-kitty cat bond to stand the test of time. That or until your feline friend departs for the great kitty land in the sky.

This new “innovation” looks like a big ol adult pacifier to me. The video shows people with this thing in their mouths, licking a cat with it. The cat responds with love and affection – and the sharing of hair balls.

You know you’re going to get a hair ball stuck in your throat from licking your cat. That’s a natural rule. Cats shed and the nearest person to them will be the recipient of enough fur to make Christmas sweaters for everybody they know.

I may have hit on something: sweaters made from discarded cat fur. Hmmm…

Anyway, I don’t know about everybody else, but I think this whole “licking your cat” thing is kinda kooky. Each to his/her own, though – it’s not illegal or immoral so go for it. Lemme know how it goes.

I’ll have to take a poll from all my cat-parent friends and see what they think. Who knows. I could be wrong. It just might be the best thing since sliced bread – or Fancy Feast.

I can hear it now: “Oh I just love my kitty cat licker! Fluffy is so happy and it saves a ton on kitty cat therapy sessions.”

The cats in the video seem to be content.

What will they come up with next? I’m not even going to try to imagine what these inventors might design for dog owners…

Wrinkle Spray and Royals

I was planning to blog about the royal wedding and wrinkle spray got in the way.

Which brings up an odd question – do royals use wrinkle spray? Probably not.

I love royal affairs, especially the weddings – the pomp and ceremony, the lavishness of it all and the history. (remember all those history classes you hated back in school? I loved ‘em.)

I’m getting to the wrinkle spray story. So, while I spent the day royal watching I was also preparing to leave for a conference.

I washed up all my clothes and packed them away in my suitcase, all the while eyeing my bottle of wrinkle spray. It didn’t matter how “slept in” my freshly laundered clothes looked when I arrived and unpacked, I could simply spray them and voila! The wrinkles would fall out faster than relatives fighting over grandma’s will.

Then I drove across the mountain and pulled onto the great writer’s conference campus. The birds were singing, people were happily unpacking their cars, excited for the week of learning ahead and it hit me.

I had forgotten my wrinkle spray.

Had I been a royal planning a trip, I would have a lady-in-waiting and she would have made sure I had my wrinkle spray.

My advice to all the royal gals – always stay on good terms with your staff. They will take care of you and make sure you have things like that packed for the trip.

Not that a member of the royal family would be caught shopping in a “dollar” store. That’s where you have to get it. And it’s a certain kind of cheap – not just any wrinkle spray will do. Don’t get the big name brand either. It’s twice as expensive and doesn’t work.

So, here I am with no wrinkle spray. Thank goodness I didn’t get an invitation to the royal wedding. They probably don’t even have dollar stores in England where I could run out and buy the things I always forget to take on a trip.

Just about anywhere I go, usually not too far away, I know there will be a Wal Mart or a dollar joint nearby in case I forget anything. I can always count on that.

It’s probably a good thing I didn’t marry Prince Andrew all those years ago (I used to practice my royal wave, just in case)- I’m sure the Queen would have looked down on a daughter-in-law shopping at the Wally World. I could have shown her a few things about getting a bargain though, and the joys of wrinkle spray.