Friday, May 16, 2014

18 Ways You Know You Were a Camp Counselor

Keens tan lines. S'mores. Two minute showers.  Oh, the joy of being a camp counselor.  Think back to the bittersweet nostalgia, and enjoy the memories of that one sweaty summer. 

1) You have a real understanding of writing letters.   Living the camp bubble life kept you from the outside world.  So, mail time was literally everything!  Sure, it was great when your mom sent pictures of her new dachshund puppy.  But really, all you could think was why didn't she give me a blow by blow of this week's episode of Keeping Up With the Kardashains?

2) Forget $7.25 an hour.  You chose to work for way less than minimum wage.   

3) You have a lot of random skills that are basically useless in the real world. The ability to tie a billion knots? Check.  The ability to turn a toilet paper role into a sought after spirit stick? Check.  The ability to add hand motions to any song? Double check. 

4) Really, just camp songs in general.  Why don't people randomly break out into renditions of bad '90s music on a daily basis?  

5) You were always hungry. 

6) …And your daily calories probably consisted of just two things:  tater tots and s'mores. 

7) Whether it be the counselors or the campers, you know summer love is the most special kind of love. 

8) You know true exhaustion is a lot like being really, really drunk. 

9) You know the greatest fashion accessories are handmade friendship bracelets and tie dyed bandannas.  Along with your staff t-shirts, you still can't get rid of the ones your campers made.  

10) For an entire summer, dressing fancy meant applying tinted Chapstick and pairing your neon socks with a clean t-shirt. 

11) You've been on a BLOB and know it's awesome. 

12) You know working in the camp store or snack shack was the greatest assignment. 

13) You've overdosed on Benadryl.  Thanks a lot ant bites on top of ant bites. 

14) You own way to many one pieces.  

15) Someone, besides your mom or significant other, has folded your underwear. Privacy was not an option. If you left your delicates in the drier for too long, chances are your co or campers were going to touch them. 

16) Your funniest stories usually involve something funny a kid said or did. 

17) You know Post Camp Depression is a real thing.  Grief is leaving the camp bubble behind and being forced to function in the real world again. 

18) You've still got your camp's sticker plastered to your Nalgene water bottle. 

Sunday, May 11, 2014

20 Reasons Why My Mom's The Best

I know everyone thinks their mom's the best, especially on days like today.  But, mine really is.

Here's 20 reasons why I love her!

1) She's the most selfless person I know. Whether it be her time or money, she does whatever it takes to provide for her three kiddos.  She's the kind of Momma who'd literally cut off her own arm if we needed it.  
Whether it be Christmas circa 1996 or 2013, she's always been there for us!  
2) Whenever we go out for Mexican, she lets me decide whether we get cheese dip or guacamole. 

3) She believes in our talents. From the time I brought her my first bit of writing in 2nd Grade to now, she's always encouraged me to make a career out of what I love.  Unlike my brother and sister, I've never been one to master math.  She understands my analytical weaknesses and embraces my creative nature, buying me a stack of glue sticks when most kids would need a calculator during back to school shopping.

4) She knows our favorite cookies.  Taking a page from June Cleaver, whenever one of us comes home from college, she makes sure our favorite sweet treats are just coming out of the oven as we walk in the door.

5) She introduced me to Days of Our Lives.

6) She indulges our weird habits.  The three of us have this weird habit of randomly breaking out into song.  I think it has something to do with watching too many musicals at any early age, but anyways.  We'll be sitting at the table, someone will say a phrase which will in turn trigger our rendition of "Do You Want to Build A Snowman."  And the worst part about it…we all have horrible singing voices!

7) She prioritizes family dinners.

8) She taught me good morals. From the day I was born, she brought me up in a Christ-centered home and worked long hours to put me through the best schools around.

9) She understands how much I love my dog.  We're looking for places to spend our vacation, and she knows I'd be sad to leave Roo behind.  So, if they're not pet friendly, they've been marked off our list of possibilities.

10) She's honest.

11) She understands sometimes you just need to stay in your pajamas all day.  By no means am I insinuating that she's lazy; she just knows that after a busy week of work, spending a Saturday at home with fuzzy socks and an oversized t-shirt is the best medicine.

12) She loves her holidays.  Whether it be Christmas or Arbor Day, she has decorations for every occasion.  Even if it means creating holidays (like Spooky March), she loves when the whole family gets together for celebrations.

13) Using the clever phrase "Beauty is Pain," she fixed my hair for the first 11 years of my life…despite my morning screams. 

14) She is one tough cookie.  She's been put through the ringer, and all it seems to do is make her that much stronger.  She's a whiz at  keeping her cool, even when a tree falls on the house.

15) She's my best editor.  She's been forced to read every term paper I've ever turned in.  Kudos to her, especially, for proofing my 20 page piece on Female Genital Mutilation in African Housewives.

16) Except for my whole wearing leggings as pants thing, she never judges my outfit choices too sternly. 

17) She loves Disney.  Most kids have to beg their parents to take them to Disney World.  Not me.  We've been to the Most Magical Place on Earth more times than I can count, and I've got the pictures with Mickey to prove it.

18) She's the first person I call.  She's always there when I need her. Even if it is three o'clock in the morning, I know she'll be there to discuss the good, the bad, or the ugly.

19) She makes meatless chili.  Especially living in the South, I understand it's got to be difficult cooking for a vegetarian, yet she's very considerate in making sure I don't go hungry…even if that does mean I'm eating a plate of fries when we go to Five Guys.

20) She's the epitome of a fabulous Southern Woman.  She understands the importance of family and  isn't afraid to cook with butter.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Top TV Mommas (And The Life Lessons They've Taught Us)

Lorelai, Clair, June..who's your favorite? 
With Mother's Day just around the corner, it's the perfect time to salute the best TV mommas.  Just like in life, they've got the most thankless role. But there's more to them than just carting around their kiddos and reacting to their dopey husband's shenanigans.

1) Lorelai Gilmore, Gilmore Girls:  If you're a girl who grew up in the '00s chances are you've wished your mother-daughter relationship was more like that between Rory and her quirky, coffee-drinking mom.  After sitting through seven seasons, Lorelai taught us diner food is delicious and anything can be achieved through hard work (and a little bit of sass).

2) Catelyn Stark, Game of Thrones:  Sure, she plays favorites (like solely focusing on Rob's protection when Arya and Sansa were stuck in King's Landing following their dad's beheading), but you gotta admit she's a devoted mom.  From Cat, it’s apparent when your counterpart is Cersei, it doesn’t take much to win the maternal match.

3) Carol Brady, The Brady Brunch:  The typical story of a blended family, TBB is all about what happens after mom and dad get together to form their one big happy family.  Stay at home mom is her official job title, but Carol does so much more.  From freelance writer and sculptor to lunch packer and PTA president, she's the '70s mom to be, all while carting around her six kiddos in that brown station wagon.

4) Clair Huxtable, The Cosby Show:  Long before Michelle Obama moved to Pennsylvania Avenue, Clair  introduced America to a fabulous black woman who shattered racial stereotypes.  No other TV momma has lived up to her iconic beauty and brains.  From her court room, shoulder-padded suits to her silky, jewel-toned pjs, she always looked like a well put together lady.  If I was guaranteed a mom like Clair, I'd want to be one of five too!

5) Cora Crawley, Downton Abbey:  It takes a special person to deal with a mother-in-law like Violet.  But, Cora's defining mom moment came in Season One, when she helped Mary move a dead body from her bed.  Talk about doing whatever it takes to keep your daughter's public appearance up.

6) June Cleaver, Leave It To Beaver:  Yes, June wore pearls around the house. And high heels.  But her real trademark was her loving, no-nonsense approach to raising two boys.  These days, people love to poke fun at June, but you gotta admit there's something sweet to making sure your family's dinner is ready and on the table at 5:00 PM, even if it is unrealistic.

7) Laura Petrie, The Dick Van Dyke Show:  Laura's who Betty Drapper wishes she could be.  This strong woman knows how to keep a home, manage a family, and remain true to her own self, all while rocking capri pants.  Certainly not the normal '60s TV Mom, she's not afraid to voice her own opinions, and if her husband disagrees, then oh well.

8) Tami Taylor, Friday Night Lights:  As if raising a teenage daughter couldn't earn you a spot by itself, Mrs. Coach is the go-to Momma for all Dillion football players.  She miraculously says the right thing at the right time to every wandering teen to come her way.  Plus, Tami know that sometimes the best therapy is a date night with the television and a glass of Chardonnay.

9) Sophia Petrillo, The Golden Girls:  The eldest Golden Girl sure is one tough cookie, but those wise cracks don't hide this Italian Ma's love for Dorothy, Blanche, and Rose.

10) Jill Taylor, Home Improvement:  She's a mother to three boys and married to Tim "The Toolman" Taylor…nuff said.

11) Reba McEntire, Reba:  Like the theme song says, Reba's a survivor.  Though a cheating husband and pregnant 17-year-old are thrown her way, this feisty red head's got it under control.