Random Thoughts on Symmes

… inept, but trying real hard

I want my Maumee! July 27, 2007

Filed under: Children,Events,Family,Fun!,Photos,Travel — Layni @ 9:45 am

Well y’all – we’re heading out for vacation. 

We’re leaving this afternoon & driving north to Maumee Bay on Lake Erie. 


We’ll hang out there thru Saturday, hiking & placing a couple of letterboxes [please see “Good Wholesome Fun“, I’m not explaining this again!] & then Sunday morning we’ll head back this way a bit to Ohio Cavern’s.  Did y’all know we had caves this close to us?  Neither did we [thanks for the tip Sheila!]


Cool, huh?

Here we’re staying at Indian Lake State Park Sunday & Monday night, which is also near West Liberty, where we’ll likely head over to so we can check out Piatt Castles.  Because castles are cool.


And shhhhhh, don’t tell the kids, but we’re also going to Marmon Valley Farm to  go horseback riding. 

So anyway, I have to go get packed … because I work best under pressure, obviously. 

Have a great weekend & I’ll give you an update when we get back on Tuesday.


Jesus loves me, this I know July 24, 2007

Filed under: Children,Events,Family,Friends,Fun!,Photos,Uncategorized — Layni @ 3:01 pm

We had a nice weekend.  Which I think I’ll post a story or two about.  [But don’t let the title apply to this first story, because it most certainly doesn’t!]

We had our company picnic on Friday.  It was a b-e-a-utiful day & a good time was had by all.  I managed to sustain a couple of game-related injuries,  because I just have to tell you, some of these activities were NOT SAFE FOR WORK Y’ALL!  [And not just because we were all running around buttnaked either!] 


While we admired Darcy’s effort & her obvious commitment to her team, she only managed to land the first runner-up spot in the, “How Many Brands of Beer Can You Drink?” competition.  Nice try Darcy. *

I don’t even know how but can only assume that the rope burn on my boob was from tug-of-war & also I bruised my calf falling off of a tight rope!   See how I said tight rope right there?  See what I mean?  DANGEROUS!  We played charades, which I love & also I like to think that I’m pretty good at, but then there was some beer there [hi beer], so we’re doing really well & we’re neck-in-neck with the opposing team and then it’s my turn.  Yeah!  I draw from the bowl & you guys … it was, ‘The Wizard of Oz”!  Only one of my favorite movies of all time, so I know I’ve got this in the bag.  [The following poor judgement, likely brought to you, maybe a little bit, by “Beer”.]  Instead of doing the universally recognized motions for ‘movie’ ::: hand in circle over one eye, squinting with the other & turning an imaginary crank with other hand … because apparently the last camera produced was in 1913! :::, ‘3 words’ ::: hold up # of fingers :::, then simply clicking my heels together [hello ruby slippers] — I begin smiling & skipping gleefully around in front of my team with my arms bent at the elbows like I was linked arm-in-arm with two dear friends [or from their perspective, it’s possible that it could’ve looked like I was high & square dancing].  So when they failed to get it immediately [what the heck people???] I then began gesturing with my hands towards the ground in a swervy motion to make it completely clear that I was OBVIOUSLY skipping with my friends the Scarecrow & the Lion on a golden sidewalk [gawd!].  I Finally did go with the whole; movie, 3 words thing & skipped a bit more & someone was able to guess.  Whew!  I sat down, took a sip of beer & shouted, “Click my heels!!!  I should’ve just clicked my heels!”  [So a big thank you to my teammates for resisting the urge to point this out to me.]

Good times.  Moving on.

Saturday morning we had to pick Ashton up from camp at 10:00.  Harold stayed behind to get Mom’s grass cut, so it was just Maddie & I.  We’re heading down the highway doing about 65-70 & were almost to our exit when a truck in the left lane ran over something in his lane & sent it airborn … right at me!!!  I had precious cargo & no time to react.  I could see it coming & knew it was inevitable, so I prayed for the best, expected the worst, ducked down a bit, braced myself & plowed right through it.  It hit the front of my car & EXPLODED!  Literally.  Into a million bits, flying left & right!  So I was all, “Oh, my gosh Maddie!  Did you see that!?”  “Nope”, she said, “I was playing my gameboy.  See what?” 

I know I shouldn’t have, but I might have mentioned to God, as I continued on my way to get Ashton, that if He would like to go ahead & fix any damages to my car, that it’d be much appreciated.  After all, I hadn’t seen it yet & could only speculate.  [sometimes folks maybe shouldn’t sit too close to me on account of lightning strikes & stuff].

I went on, fully expecting my car to not run right, because whatever I’d struck, also went up under the car.  But it did.  It ran fine.  We were fine.  My baby was fine.  It was all fine.  [Thank you God, thank you, thank you, thank you!] 

When I got home, Harold assessed the damage and was frankly amazed at how little it had done [Coincidence?  I think not.]  He actually thought that he could buff out, what appeared to be fiberglass debris from the ‘thing’ I hit, with rubbing compound.  Guess what you guys?  He was right!  Can you believe it?  A ‘thing’ the size of the hood of a Pinto hits you head-on at 70 mph-ish & nothing?!  Barely a scratch?

Thank you God!  Thank you, thank you, thank you!  Jesus loves me THIS I KNOW!

* Y’all knew this wasn’t really our picnic, right?  But it sure is a funny picture.  Feel free to submit additional captions.


Oh, we’ll live happily ever after [but it may take wine] July 18, 2007

Filed under: Children,Events,Family,Fun!,Photos,Random,Uncategorized — Layni @ 2:00 pm

Hi there!  Hope you are not looking for something good!  Because, I have been a little busy.  And apparently, as you’ll soon notice, I do not have the time for complete sentences.  Ah, the anticipation, right?  So basically, here is the short version.  And by short version, I mean “now I will go over, in minute detail, the trivial annoyances that have kept me from writing stuff.

I’ve been working.  [Hey, technically that’s a complete sentence.  Who? I’ve.  Been – which is letting you know its past tense.  What?  Working … so see, there’s the verb.  Maybe I was wrong about the complete sentences.  I’m good at it!] 

When I come home there are needy people & things there.  Home can be very demanding.  Like kids who love me, but prefer food.  Example:

[Walk in the back door from work.] 

Maddie:  “What’s for dinner?”

Me:   “Um, yeah, ‘hi’.”

Harold:  “Maddie, that’s not nice to ask, ‘What’s for dinner?’ as soon as Mommy gets home.  You should say, ‘hi!’ first”

Maddie:  “Hi Mommy.  What’s for dinner?”


Aw, but then there’s Ashton.  Dear, dear, sweet Ashton.  Always so generous with her affections & expressive of her feelings.  Who gleefully bounds down the stairs each day to greet me at the door with a hug & a kiss.  [That part is true.]

Ashton:  “Hi Mommy!  How was your day?”

Me:  “Good thanks.”

Ashton:  “That’s good.  Hey, I need $400, 16 loads of laundry done tonight, 32 permission slips filled out, a copy of my birth certificate & a covered dish.  By tomorrow.  What’s for dinner?”  [That part is a little exaggerated, but for the most part.  Also true.]


Oh, they may look cute, but sweet Jesus, rrrruuuunnnnn!!!!!! 

So what am I going to fix for dinner?

Also, you guys, Kalabou [dog recently diagnosed with seizures that require us – and generally by ‘us’ I mean ‘me’] to give her meds twice a day.  For the rest of her life.  Note to self: Add this to list of ‘things to do’.]  Yeah, her.  Well, she’s been acting all itchy.  And y’all, it’s really hard to sleep when you keep hearing :::thumpthumpthumpthumpthump:::  “Wha – !!!  What’s that?” 

So I’m leaving work now to drag her to the vet, much to her dismay, to get a steroid shot for ‘itchy’.  There, she’ll engage in retaliatory action, because, “My God, these people hold me down, shave me & stick me with needles!  Mom!  Do you not remember that they do this to me!?”  Truly, nothing much good has ever come from a trip to the vet.  At least not recently, and she knows this.  So, much like an octopus that shoots ink when in danger, Kalabou proceeds to poo on the floor when scared and pee on herself when in danger.  So while she’s going in for a teeny little shot that exists only to make her feel better, she’ll likely come out needing a bath.  Because, like my other girls, she thinks I need something else to do. 

ps.  Harold, I am definitely taking the van!


Would sir be kind enough to feed us popcorn?  [Kalabou (L), Max (R) & playing sir’,my cousin Chris.]


You sir, are kind indeed.  More please.  Thank you.


Not reaching their target audience July 16, 2007

Filed under: Children,Creativity,Family,Fun!,Photos — Layni @ 9:32 am


[Bad camera phone pic; what you may not be able to see … the Chaser Plus, cardboard bottle of beer in cozy & beef jerky.  Classy.]

At the grocery this weekend, we looked over to find Maddie, sitting in the beer case.  [We suspect she’s a drunk.]  Daddy went for his camera.  I added the props.  She’ll definitely bring this up in therapy when she’s older. 


Good, wholesome fun July 15, 2007

Filed under: Children,Events,Family,Friends,Fun!,Random,Travel,Uncategorized — Layni @ 2:00 pm

We spent a really nice Saturday afternoon letterboxing at Keehner Park with the Sextons.  On another occassion, they’d already found the series of letterboxes that we set out to find, so while we ventured off to look for them, they went elsewhere in the park & placed another one.  We found them all!  We were very proud.  Because we’re easily excitable.

[Wherein a whole bunch of y’all are probably rolling your eyes at our white-bread suburbanism.]


[Shiny happy people.  With extra shiny.] 

After several failed attempts at a group photo [balancing the camera on a limb, placing it on a stump, holding it out in front of us, asking the man in the hockey mask, etc.] it finally occurred to me that Jo’s camera had a wrist carrier on it.  We hung it from a branch, gathered in & voila!  Such a handsome [albeit sweaty] group … even if Harold does look like a jogger who was jogging by, stopped, smiled & went on his way [“Who’s that guy?”]  Oh, & Jo might look like she needs ambulatory service & even though she is hot & sweaty from our inhumane steep mountain ascent hike, she’s mostly just sun burnt from hanging out at the pool earlier.  She’s fine.  Really.  Fine.

 We enjoyed mid 80’s temperatures, beautiful breezes, played in creeks, got excercise [about 6 miles worth!], spent quality time with friends & family, made memories & saw some unusual sights …


[Not a good tree for ‘base’.]


Holy crap! July 13, 2007

Filed under: Fun!,Random,Uncategorized — Layni @ 11:40 pm

Dear BRAILLE Fifth Third ATM machine that is placed in a clearly drive-in only location,

You are unnecessary & frankly, you scare us.

In Christ,



Rant, rant, rant, et al July 12, 2007

Filed under: Children,Family,Quotes,Random,Uncategorized — Layni @ 11:15 pm

[et al; legal speak for “and also with other stuff]

I read recently [or maybe I saw it on tv] that companies now have  to provide training to their managers to effectively deal with spoiled little pukes young professionals emerging from college & into the workplace.  These kids have been so conditioned to believe that the world revolves around them that they’re not just content to work for their paycheck [why, the injustice!]  These kids are actually expecting frequent atta-boy/girls, recognition & perks for just doing their job[!]  Because if Nathan took a poopie in the big boy potty & not behind the living room curtains – he would get a video game.  [Yay, Nathan!]  And if little Jessica ate 4 bites of her dinner, she got a Polly Pocket for her outstanding achievement.  Holy insanity! 

These kids are a direct result of the up & coming ‘coddled’ generation.  The generation whose parents were too afraid of repercussion to effectively collar-snatch them up & give them a dirty beatin’ discipline them properly but instead were encouraged to, ‘get down to the child’s eye-level & ask them to share their feelings.’  “Joshua, why did you just pimp-slap Mommy?  Hmmm?  Ohhh, you felt frustrated?  Well, let’s talk about your feelings.”  Aarrggh!  They’ve been fussed over all of their lives, so in their mind, they are very important.  They totally feel a sense of entitlement.  To whatever they want.  Whenever they want it.  What happened to paying your dues?  Working your way up through the ranks?  Proving yourself? 

I hadn’t seen it.  Only read about it [or maybe saw it on tv, again, I don’t know].  But now I’ve experienced it personally.  And let me tell y’all, it ain’t pretty.  I can’t be specific because co-workers read my blog, but let me just say this;  kids, if I could meet your parents, I’d definitely get down to their eye-level, look them straight in the eye & PIMP-SLAP them myself!  And then I’d say, “Guess what lady?  That’s what he was trying to tell you when he did it to you at 3!”  “What?  You’re regretful?  Well, let’s talk about that feeling.” 

Moving right along.  Let’s talk about having “happy periods”. 

I saw a commercial yesterday for Always pads & did you guys know that we could have ‘happy periods’?  And if you did; why wouldn’t you tell me!?   ‘Have a Happy Period’.  That’s what the commercial said!  Like I’m going to go, “Wait … you mean that my ill-fated decision to use Stayfree has been the reason that I get crampy, bitchy, bloated, break out & cry at cat food commercials, when all this time I could have been having happy periods!?  Dammit!  I hate you Always, for thinking that I’m STUPID!  Happy period.  Please.

[side note: so I’m sitting here typing this & watching Rob & Big & a commercial comes on for Kandoo wipes for kids … which, first of all, this is on MTV, so I’m not so sure they’re reaching their target audience, but anyway, their commercial claimed that Kandoo wipes ‘makes wiping easy & fun’.  Fun.  Wiping.  I’ve been missing out on this action too?]

Miscellaneous random rants …

Please let me merge onto the highway.  My lane ends & you’re creeping by in bumper to bumper traffic anyway.  You’re just being mean.

Do not take a pencil from my desk & claim that you thought it was one I probably didn’t want because it was pink.  I do not keep the pens & pencils on my desk that I don’t like.  I keep those in the garbage!

Man in the cafeteria every day.  Wait until you get back to your desk to blow your nose so loud & hard that it sounds like you’ve hurt yourself.  Everyone in the cafeteria actually has a secret ‘look’ complete with disgusted eye roll that we give each other now.  You gross us out!

Coworkers, quit using the term ‘to your point’.  It doesn’t exist outside of ‘company’.  Because it doesn’t make sense out there.

When I’m agitated, do not offer me chocolate.  Further, if you’re married to me, do not ask me if it’s ‘about that time’.  If it is, then you’ve just made a mistake.

Hey, I think I may have just figured out the reason for this rant post. 

Good night y’all.  Have a happy Friday [& if you’re having your period, well, I hope it’s happy too].