Friday, October 31, 2014

Happy Super Halloween

Day #31

If you are new to Chairs from the Curb,

we dress up as a family every Halloween.

We’ve been doing it for over 10 years.

We have a family meeting every year and vote on ideas for our costumes.

We have to all agree.

And we have to keep it a secret until Halloween.

Little rules and requests have been added through the years.

For example, our characters have to be “classic”. Nothing trendy or only recognizable to certain select people.

After the Peter Pan year, 

Monte announced “NO MORE TIGHTS”.

I think the entire neighborhood appreciated that.

And he also made it official that he would never be a woman. 

I think the entire neighborhood appreciates that as well.

Now that the girls are older it is getting harder and harder for me to get any good roles.

I’ve been a man.

That’s me as Colonel Sanders. The mustache made me sneeze.

I’m animal in the back with the drumsticks. 

A lot.

With the exception of Captain Hook,

I’ve not been “super" happy with my roles.

[I just gave you a clue to our costumes this year.]

I fought HARD last year to be Mary Ann and not Gilligan for our Gilligan’s Island theme.

And this year, I had to PUT MY FOOT DOWN to be what I ultimately was.

McDaniel wanted my role.

But I wouldn’t back down.

Monte as Captain America, me as Wonder Woman, McDaniel as Spider Girl and
Ellie as Bat Girl.
Can you believe we got criticized for mixing
Marvel and DC characters?!

Get a life, people!

Said the middle-aged mom 
dressed as Wonder Woman.
McDaniel has never even SEEN the Wonder Woman show.

Clearly I didn’t go authentic with
my costume.

Me and my sister used to “play" Wonder Woman.

We’d spin around in circles like she’d do to turn into Wonder Woman

and then we’d put on the thick leather bracelets we got from VBS 
(the kind we’d bang our initials into with a mallet and a metal stamp) 
to emulate her golden bracelets. 


We are practically twins.

A jump rope usually served as the golden lasso that made the bad guys (the twin boys that lived next door) tell the truth of their evil schemes in short. choppy. sentences.

I had to recreate that:

“Tell the truth, Captain America!"

He couldn’t handle the truth.
Because the truth is, being a super hero is a thankless job.

Captain America picking up dog poop from our yard.

I’d recently watched a few episodes of Wonder Woman on one of those throwback networks and let me tell you, it did not disappoint. 

Nothing could've made me happier--unless of course, an episode of Bionic Woman followed it.

Heaven help me, I loved that show! Even had the Barbie doll.

Back to Halloween…

Our neighborhood had Trick Or Treating on the 30th this year since Halloween fell on a Friday. Something about high school football and juvenile delinquents being enticed into more delinquency, I think.

So this was our last night:

The pose by our construction dumpster. We are “cleaning up crime” after all. 

One of the girls managed to clock me in the forehead with that chain.
I forgot who, and my own name, for a brief bit.

Judging by Monte’s expression, I don’t think he can see. 

Spider Girl and Bat Girl.

McDaniel had to hold her head that way because she was blocking Ellie’s costume.
At least she seems happy about it.

Nice photo bomb, Spider Girl. I look like I have a bionic hand here. 
ANOTHER reason McDaniel was not suited for the Wonder Woman role this Halloween was that she did NOT get how funny this was:

Wonder Woman parking her invisible jet on our street.
(My thighs were shaking after several photos.)

Happy Halloween!!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Real Life

Day #30

I’ve read the blogs and seen the Facebook posts of people who seem to live photographic ready, always freshly showered, dressed cute lives.

But they’ve edited out the best parts.

At least the best parts for me.

For me, the best parts of life are unvarnished.

The unplanned, unposed pictures that give you a tiny peek into the personalities of who is smiling (or not) back at you.

no one has their hand on their hip 
with their back arched
and their leg popped up.

Like here.

Or here!

There is a family photo of us at Fripp Island last summer that demonstrates a true “real life” moment.

My brother brought surf shirts for all of us and rented a paddle board for us to try for a morning.

That’s another whole post that involves 
practicing in a tide pool, 
getting beat up by waves 
and being stung multiple times by jelly fish.
But it was a BLAST!
No, really it WAS.

We attempted to pose for a picture doing the “hang loose” surfer pose.


My dad did the “hook ‘em horns” Texas pose instead.


Monte snapped a photo of us trying to show dad the difference between “hang loose” and “hook ‘em horns”.

I’m not sure if ever did get it.

But I love the picture.

The other morning we were blessed with a gorgeous sunrise.

I decided to snap a photo of it with my iPhone as we were heading out to school.

I got more than I bargained for once I clicked the camera button.

Yes, that is an actual Port-A-Pot truck 
in the bottom of my sunrise photo.

I labeled it for you for effect:

I posted this picture on Instagram (follow me at @chairsfromthecurb) with a comment implying there is a sermon somewhere in this picture.

Dear, sweet Brian from church left this message:

"Yes, this is a picture of how our sin mars the beauty of God’s creation. But it is also a picture of the hope we have:  If this sunset is still beautiful in spite of the sin that mars it, how much more beautiful will everything be in the new heaven and new earth when God removes all of the effects of sin?”


I wouldn’t have gotten such a powerful message 
if I’d just posted a picture of a pretty sunrise 
on Instagram.

McDaniel and Carisa swiped my phone and had a little selfie fun the other day. 

It makes absolutely no sense, but I laugh every time I see it.

If it was just the two of them smiling, 
while I would’ve loved it, 
it wouldn’t make me laugh 
every time I see it.

Speaking of selfless, 

our neighbor left these gems on my phone the other day:

Kinda cool effect.

I do not even know what to say but I may include this
in a future birthday or graduation or wedding card.

Yesterday, I came home to a big box on the side door steps.

I drug it inside and called Monte to see if I could open it.

My birthday is in a few weeks and I didn’t know 
if he was REALLY on the ball with the gift 
purchasing this year.

He said I could open it.

Yep, Monte saw a discount and free shipping opportunity and bought the financially forbidden Viva paper towels ONLINE.

Nope. This will NOT be counting as a birthday gift. 

This is a slice of REAL LIFE for you right here.

Monte is quite the online shopper.

Everything from computer and phone cords 
to under shirts and underwear.

I don’t have a picture of this, and it doesn’t really apply to my theme, but I have to share:

The other evening, Monte and I ran to the store after dinner to get doughnuts for a before school bible study Ellie attends.

The kid that checked us out wore a name tag that said:


I asked how he pronounced his name.

I had to.

He said it was Ethan and his last name starts with a ‘g’ so they were having a bit of fun with him when they printed his name tag.

I told him I liked, 


Which, according to Monte, came out more
in my “outside” voice than my “inside” one.
With a little Carisa twang thrown in.

Monte told the embarrassed “Ethang” to just tell people the ‘g’ is silent.

So there you have it.

My real life.

No filters.

No edits.

No take backs.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Do It Again

Day #29

When the girls were little it didn’t matter what game we played,

book we read,

funny face we made,

they’d always say,

“Do it again!”

once it was over.

We could push them over and over and over and over again on the swing, but it was still,

“Do it again!”

Monte had this game he made up with McDaniel when she was little called, 

"1,2,3, GO!"

McDaniel would stand all the way in the kitchen by the door and Monte would be on the floor in the living room.

As soon as he said, 

“1,2,3, GO!”

McDaniel would take off running and jump into Monte’s arms.

She’d want to do it over and over and over again until Monte would finally end the game, exhausted.

One night, Monte decided to himself, that he was NOT going to end the game. He was going to play “1,2,3, GO!” until he wore McDaniel out.

It took way longer than he thought 
but he was victorious (and sore).

It made me think of God, and

that we have a savior in Jesus 
that never grows tired.

No matter how many times we say, 

“Do it again!”

to peace, 

he gives it.


We can’t wear him down.

We are learning in my bible study that we can’t get to the bottom of the word of God. 

We can’t contain or possess all the knowledge that is the mystery of God.

If we could, we’d never have to say, 

“Do it again!”

And He’s a delighted father,

just like Monte, 

waiting on the living room floor 
for us to run right into His arms.


Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Little Mermaid

Day #28

After rehearsing since August,

4 performances since Thursday,

and LOADS of makeup,

Carisa doing a tailgate makeup job after
school and before rehearsal. 

Carisa did her best to make Ellie’s face
“pop” as a Water Snake in the Dark
Sea Creature chorus.

Then Ellie sent us this picture from
rehearsal. Carisa had a similar reaction.

Backseat makeup job after school since it
was too chilly for the tailgate.
it’s over.

The Little Mermaid Jr. is officially over and out.

I’m not sure why I’m exhausted.

I didn’t step a foot onstage. 

It was fantastic.

It just never ceases to amaze me what 11-14 year-olds are 
not only willing to do but so very capable of doing.

The casting was spot. on.

Opening night, we hosted the bible study girls, their leaders and others from church for pizza before heading over to the show.

Look at these cute ceramic dishes from Pick Your Plum. They came in
the day before, just in time for hosting company.

Robyn scared me, when I finally noticed her staring
at me from our addition in progress.

Julie did not scare me.
Sweet girls. Nice face, McDaniel.

A few weeks before opening night, I showed up to buy all the tickets for the shows that we were going to need BEFORE the doors officially opened.

I was probably the 172nd person in line. 

So all that was left were seats in the balcony.

Which were just fine.

I located our family ad in the program.

We went with Brian’s ad idea. And we got our actual
names mentioned. But I got chastised for not
including art work. So close and yet so far.
Carisa bragged just a teence that no one was sitting in front of her. 

Until the guy with the BABY 
and the tall spiky HAIR plopped down.

We all got a kick out of that.
Julie got a picture. 

The baby was so good the entire show.

Amazingly, TWO people I know had not seen Little Mermaid before.

(Beth and Julie).


Beth brought her neighbor with twin 5-year-old girls.
I think they filled her in somewhat.

Julie was on the edge of her seat.

That’s me in the background, being amused at Julie
NOT knowing that King Triton was going to destroy
all of Ariel’s human treasures.

I had trouble figuring out where Ellie was on stage. Not only did she have on striped make up, but a costume that included a hood.

I thought I had her located. And watched her intently.

After the show, Ellie told me she was 
on the other side of the stage.

That’s Water Snake Ellie with the orange and white
vertical stripes. The one by the sting ray and Jail Fish.
Ellie got to perform smack dab in the center 
of a platform during a few numbers.

She got to use her arms. 

She gave a very dramatic Water Snake performance.

One that my parents didn’t want to miss.

Or Monte’s mom.

The girls call her Gommie.

Ellie with her friend Paula who was a Sting Ray.

Ellie wearing Paula’s glasses. Such a hipster water snake.

Now, on to Halloween!

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