Tuesday, March 26, 2024

Yesterday When I Was Young

          You want to know how old I am? I can remember when new potatoes were actually new.

                 There was nationwide amazement. We had only known thick-skinned russets. And now people had invented a new plant?

          I colored with crayons in the now retired colors of maize, lemon yellow, blue gray, raw umber, green blue, orange red, orange yellow, and violet blue. I still miss them.

          As a child I was given paragoric when I was sick. Today it’s classified as a Schedule III drug under the Controlled Substances Act. I do not miss paragoric.

          My girlfriends and I wore skate keys around our necks and chewed Fruit Stripe Gum.  We dreamed of wearing Go-Go boots and buying the next adorable Troll doll.

          We dutifully glued Green Stamps into booklets that could be redeemed for something really cool, like a portable hair dryer with a pink bonnet.

          If you had given us bowls of quinoa, tofu, boba, kale, chia seeds, or agave, and said these would be popular in the new century, we would have wrinkled our noses and said, “Nuh-uh.”

But we would have been thrilled to think that you could access life hacks at the touch of a button. See my Youtube Mom videos right here.

Tuesday, March 19, 2024

Hansel and Who?

         I have always loved fairy tales, fairy gardens, fairy everything. But who knew I was turning into a fairy tale character? Gretel, to be precise.

         You remember Hansel and Gretel, leaving bread crumbs behind. Well, I do this without even trying. Honesty, you guys, I think I have excellent table manners and I am not attempting to make a mess, but (here comes the excuse) I do have dyspraxia, which is clumsy child syndrome.

          This means I am likely to trip over my chair, knock over my water glass, and yes, leave more crumbs around my plate than anyone else.

          Part if this is because I am one of those big babies who won’t eat her crusts.  They’re hard. They’re scratchy. They’re burnt and dry. So I peel them off. Luckily, my Hansel, I mean my handsome hubby, loves crusts. So we make a good pair.

          There’s just one problem. When the waiter comes to take our plates, it looks like a two-year-old has eaten in my spot. Invariably my plate is surrounded by crumbs.  

           My daughter, who studies personalities, says this is also because I am a “One,” the category of childlike people who are typically messy eaters whether they’re klutzy or not.

          Fine. I accept the diagnosis. But I’m still not eating my crusts.

          However, I have dozens of life hacks you can watch on my Youtube Mom channel.  And how not to spill on your shirt is one of them!

Tuesday, March 12, 2024

Carmel Sauce

          What do you do when your computer crashes? You go to Carmel-by-the-Sea. 

This time of year the hills looked like Ireland as we started our trip. 

 At last we arrived at this charming little village 

where sunsets are gorgeous,

food is amazing, 


          and there are even a bunch of fairytale cottages to find, built by Hugh Comstock for his wife, exactly 100 years ago.

          We drove past Pebble Beach, 

and enjoyed the fact that the seals are all gathered at Bird Rock, and the birds are all gathered at Seal Rock.


   This Frank Lloyd Wright house just sold for $22 million.

There are lots of other homes still on the market, but let’s just say it helps if you’re a billionaire.

          However, for the fabulous price of FREE, you can enjoy dozens and dozens of my Youtube Mom life hack videos.

Tuesday, March 5, 2024

Write This Down

           Are you still using Number 2 pencils? I know, I know, we use pens far more often, but most of us still own a few pencils. I use one to jot on a notepad beside my bed when I get ideas in the middle of the night.

          But don’t you wonder why we’re all using #2s? Why not #1s?  Aha! Today I shall enlighten you.

          First, pencil “leads” aren’t lead, but a mixture of graphite, clay, and water. The higher the number, the harder the core, and the lighter the marking is.

          Turns out that #1 pencils have more graphite, and thus make darker markings, so sign me up! I have always thought pencil marks were too light and skinny. I’m the same way with pens. I always choose bold over the fine tip.

          But here’s why: I have terrible handwriting. It looks like I’m in 3rd grade.  This means that a wider, smudgier line is more forgiving than a sharp point, and my handwriting looks cleaner with it. You may have gorgeous printing, in which case you can use any tip you like.

          So back to #2 pencils. It’s the standard here because it’s average, right in the middle of the grading scale. But only in the US, folks. This designation doesn’t exist in the rest of the world.

          Still, why so many kinds? Art. Drafting. Some people want very precise tips. And if you want a challenge, try writing with a super-hard 10H pencil. On the other hand, I hear that Japanese pencils add wax and other additives, to give dark, yet non-smudgy results.

          Last bit of pencil trivia for you: Henry David Thoreau’s family manufactured pencils, and he worked with his father, even inventing a new way to grind the graphite.  
          And now you will never see a common pencil in the same way again.

          However, you can see my Youtube Mom videos whether you own a pencil or not. Check out dozens of life hacks on my channel!