True Story

{June 24, 2013}   Monkey Lately

True Story: I haven’t written about the monkey lately.

Well, I haven’t written about anything lately because I am SLAMMED. Very busy summer so far in real estate. This is a good problem to have.

Back to the Monkey lately. Is almost 6 the cutest age? I really think it is. Of course I’ve thought every age since his birth has been the cutest, but this is such a sweet time with him maturing and going to school. He’s still baby-ish but maturing quickly. Kindergarten really helped with that. I think sitting still while someone is lecturing you is very grown up. I struggle with it daily.

True Story:  eating lunch with him at school one day I got in trouble.

I opened the milk wrong and spilled it everywhere. I am pretty sure my name is on the board in his classroom.

I wish I could remember to write down all the funnies. Of course my kid is the funniest, cutest kid in the world. Just like yours. So you may be very glad I can’t remember to write them all down otherwise this post would be a book..

Monkey Lately:

1) Snowbirds.

So down here on the gulf coast winter is snowbird season. Northern retirees flock down to shake their tail feathers at the Florbama without the risk of slipping on the ice. They hang out at the post office (getting boxes or general delivery), the movie theater, the library (checking email), and restaurants and bars starting around 3pm for early bird and happy hour specials.

True Story:  I love snowbirds.

I really do. I spent almost every afternoon after school in elementary and middle school at my grandmother’s assisted living home. I am very good with the old folks. We really do appreciate their business down here and they are always welcome.

True Story:  There is one place snowbirds are not welcome:  The road.

Not being ugly here, I have real proof. First of all they bike in flocks, and many on recumbent bikes. It’s hard for an entire group of bikers to make a good decision about when to cross the road.

Secondly, they meander across the road to the beach. This is true for tourists in general. They all Meander/saunter/lolli-gag across a dangerous highway where people are drinking, driving and texting.  I lived across the street from the beach for 2 1/2 years. I ran for my life every time I crossed that street.

Thirdly, the driving itself. The birds just don’t always know where they’re going. Granted, your condo can sneak up on you when they all look alike. But the story I am about to tell you is inexcusable. I was going 50 mph down the beach road in the right, east bound lane approaching a glowing green light without a hint of yellow coming. Suddenly, I had to slam on the brakes in the middle of the road because a snowbird, who also happens to be in the right lane, has decided he needs to turn left. TURN LEFT PEOPLE, across a 45 mile an hour left east bound lane and 2 turning lanes lined with cars. Yes, $#*&%^$ snowbird, flew out of my mouth.

True Story:  Not long after that Ex-Pump calls to tell me that when he was driving our son he had to brake and G Monkey said, “what is it Daddy? Is it the $%^&*(# snowbirds?”

2) Every night when G Monkey goes to sleep he tells me that he loves me to the center of the earth and back and around the sun and double infinity. That’s just %#@$*& sweet isn’t it?

3) I may have a young diva on my hands.

He periodically walks into a room and screams, “This girl is on FIRE!”

Like most gyms, G Monkey’s Karate dojo has a mirrored wall. G Monkey can not help but to look in the mirror at himself, watching himself do his Karate moves. His Senei continually got on to him about paying attention and focusing, and to quit looking in the mirror. He laughed and told me I should get G Monkey a mirror for Christmas. Eventually, Sensei nicknamed him, “Hollywood.” Finally, one day he said, “Hollywood, why do you look in the mirror all the time?” Nervous, G Monkey said, “Because I’m so handsome.” 

He says, “I know that,” like you are a dumbass all the time.


ME:  It’s a beautiful day today.

GM:  I know that.

4) G Monkey is a budding young songwriter.

He told me he wrote a song the other day. I was so proud.


Beer, beer, ba beer.

beer, beer, ba beer.

I drink it in the sun.

I drink it on the beach.

I drink it on the porch.

I drink it on the islands.

I drink it while I Bar-be-que.

I drink it when I watch NASCAR.

Beer, beer, ba beer.

True Story:  The only comfort I can take out of this is that I was not his only muse. I don’t have a BBQ grill and I have never watched NASCAR.  His father perhaps?

{August 31, 2011}   North Alabama Vacation

True Story:  I live in LA.

That would be lower Alabama. But, I was raised in North Alabama, therefore I can make fun of it later on.

G Monkey was out of school for 3 weeks and I needed to be in North AL 3 weekends in a row, so we decided to take a little 10 day North AL walkabout.

Things that happened:

1) Dog Boy

The Monkey and I, along with some family, camped for about a week on Lookout Mountain, in the northeast corner of the state. Not tent camping, but relaxing in the woods in cabins camping. For most of the time we had 4-5 dogs and 3 small kids with us.

What used to transpire on these trips to Mentone, AL, was long lazy naps and 1-handed Champagne croquet. Now, with motherhood, what transpires is the following:

I am in the cook house which is sort of like the “living room” cabin of the property where everyone gathers. I look out the front door on to the path leading up to the door and see my 4-year-old son standing there with a dog leash clipped to his shirt and his pants at his ankles. Hmm, I think. I should probably investigate this.

 I stand to look out, and am not very happy to see a very large, human turd behind him on the ground. That’s right. I don’t know any other way to describe it.

Me:  Monkey, WHAT are you doing?

G Monkey:  Being a dog… I go poopy on the ground like the dogs.


I look around for anything… Anybody to blame this on. There are dogs around but there is no hiding what this really is. It’s also right in the human walk path.

I consider for a moment kicking or throwing it into the bushes. Fertilizer right?

I decide that is not moral. Where is a husband around when you need one?

UGH!!!! What else to do? I grab a LARGE wad of paper towels and the “thing” in one hand (I can’t bring myself to type that other word again), and my son’s hand in the other.

I drag him across the property with his pants around his ankle. He is trying to quick run with his little legs to keep up with me.

I run into the big cabin where a bathroom is. My stepmom is blow drying her hair in the bathroom. I run into the room very quickly shouting over and over, “I’ve got a situation here. I’ve got a situation”.

She doesn’t say a word, just puts the hairdryer down and walks out.

Oh, good times.

2) Dog Boy #2

Only G Monkey and I, and about 4 dogs are on the property. Everyone else had gone out for a little while. I was feeding the Monkey his lunch in the cook house when all of a sudden I hear a man yelling, “HEY! HEY! STOP! JAKE!”.

I step out the back door just in time to see a Jack Russell stop suddenly in front of me. I reached out to snag his collar as it occurs to me that this might be “Jake”. Just as I got an inch from him he took off again.

A few seconds later his human daddy came running by, “Did you see a dog?” he panted breathlessly.

Me:  Yes, I just missed him. Sorry…

Before I could get it out Doggy Daddy was off again.

Me:  He went up that hill.

I pointed up a thickly wooded hill, well, small mountain really.

As the man runs up the hill all I hear are desperate, painful, wailing cries, “JAKE! STOP! OH HE’S GONE!”

I thought, man this guy is serious about it. 

A few minutes later a car pulls onto the property. A woman gets out with a leash and some dog treats. I walk down to her. She looks at me desperately. I point up the hill.

Me:  They are up there.

She begins yelling at her son up the hill, trying to help.

He wails back, “Forget it Mom, he’s gone. He’s GONE!”.

She looks at me with a tear in her eye, “I just left the door open for a minute and he was gone. They just came up for the afternoon, oh what are we going to do?”

Me:  It’s okay. He will come back.

Mom:  No, no you don’t know this dog.

For about 10 more minutes I console this woman and her husband who had by now driven up. The entire time we are listening to sobs from on top of the hill.

Dog Daddy finally appears out of the woods. He is missing a flip-flop, sweating, crying and has scratches on his face from running blindly through the woods.

Me:  Listen, our dogs run up those hills all the time. He’ll come back. It’s hot as hell. He’ll come down for water or food or to hang with our dogs.

Dog Daddy (wiping tears):  No he won’t. He’s gone. You don’t know this dog. It’s over.

He stomps off down the road with one flip-flop. Not only is he a cry baby but he’s a bit of a brat as well. Did I mention this guy is about my age, 35 maybe.

His mom yells after him and he whips his arm back at her to leave him alone and continues the pout walk.

I exchange numbers with Mom and Dad and tell them not to worry, I’ll return the dog if I see him.

True Story:  5 minutes, maybe. Might have been 3 minutes after they leave the property, I look over and lo and behold if it isn’t little Jake sitting there panting like crazy from his romp through the woods.

I said, “Hey Jake, want some water?”  He follows me to our community dog water bowl while I slip a leash on his collar.

I grab G Monkey and tell him we are about to go make someone very happy. The 3 of us, me, Jake, and the Monkey head down the road to a cabin “Mom” had told me they were staying.

We get about half way there when an SUV pulls over suddenly in front of me and blocks traffic on the entire road. Dog Daddy hops out of the car, still crying, and goes,”No way. NO WAY. God bless you. Oh, wow, thank you so much.” He gives me a sort of sweaty, tearful hug. I told him no problem, as I know how dogs can be.

In my head I thought, “Good Lawd, get a grip.”

So later on I tell the rest of the crew this story when they get back.

I had also mentioned earlier in the day that today was a full moon, and supposed to be one of the sweetest ones of the year. Also, I might mention, my horoscope said it would be my most romantic time of the year. I didn’t really see how this was going to work out for me as I was camping in the woods with my family.

I know what you’re thinking. Well, you are in Alabama. When in Rome, right?

My Dad decides that this has to be full Moon fate. It has to be:

1) My dad has the same first name as the Doggy Daddy. 2) Jake is my dad’s alter ego’s name. 3) It’s a full Moon. 4) The dog was a Jack Russel just like my dog, the Demanding Paw.

My answer?

I’m way more of a man than that dude is.

True Story:  There are more stories and observations from North Alabama Vaca to come later. But I am too dog pooped to type them right now. Pun intended.

{January 9, 2011}   Christmas Memories

True Story:  One of my favorite Christmas memories happened this year, during my 35th Christmas.

Fav Memory #1

The weekend before Christmas, Gray and I went up to North Alabama to have Christmas with the family.

We did immediate family night on Friday. We have lots to celebrate at the end of one of the worst years in all our lives. Baby sister got married in November to a great guy, so we got a new bro in law; Mom has a clean bill of health after a health scare; Middle sister and bro in law get to move to a new city with a great new job; And my film got into Sundance. So good Times!

Saturday night we did extended family fun. We have a long tradition of playing Dirty Santa with the extended family on Christmas.

Not that kind of Dirty Santa you dirty birds. I know we are from the south where it is completely acceptable to be “dirty” with your first cousin… But that is not how we roll.

This dirty Santa means you can steal gifts from people.

We are cleaning and putting food out and getting ready for family to show up. Just about the time folks start coming through the door G Monkey comes up to me and says, “there’s something wrong with my pants, Mommy”.

Me:  What do you mean?

G Monkey:  Uh, huh…

I look in his pants… Full on diarrhea everywhere. Nasty!

Me:  Come on. Come on, let’s get to the bathroom, quick.

My niece and nephew have jack and Jill bathrooms. I take Gray to my nephews bathroom. Running in there, I find my nephew and Bro in law washing their hands and looking very frustrated.

J:  We’re in here Ashley.

Me:  Sorry, emergency.

I turn to run the other direction with G Monkey, but have to stop short as I am standing in 2 inches of water.

Me: Hey, What’s this?

I point to the toilet water I am standing in.

J: Oh Sh*t.

Apparently Nephew and his Daddy are still learning about the proper amount of toilet paper use.

Now toilet water was flowing down the hall and into the living room where guests were arriving.

I back track out of there and push G Monkey down to my niece’s side of the bathroom. I precariously take his pants and underwear off. I think I’ve got it all together with no mess, when… Plop. The whole pair of underwear flipped out of my hand and flat on the floor. Gross!

I start yelling for help. J is yelling for help on his end. Both 3-year-olds are just staring at us. All the while I am dry heaving at the distusting-ness of it all.

I yell for help again while I keep G Monkey from touching anything until I can get the floor and toilet cleaned up, and am able to get him in the bath.

My sister runs back and forth to each bathroom bringing disinfectant wipes and towels.

I finally get G Monkey in the bath and we get both bathrooms cleaned up.

We come out sweating to greet our family members.

This is when I announce that this really is my favorite Christmas Memory, and a really special time we should all remember. One of those, make sure “you live in the moment moments”. 

True Side Story:  One of my uncles lives for Dirty Santa. I think he thinks about his Dirty Santa gift for most of the calendar year.

Unfortunately, this year he didn’t think he was going to make the party due to a funeral, and was unable to get a Dirty Santa gift in time.

We knew he wanted to play really badly, so we told him to just go wrap something up.

His gift you wonder?

$30 stuck in a colorectal cancer testing kit… Yes, that’s right. I said a colorectal cancer testing kit. 

Uncle B: This is serious business. You could really use this thing… Sounds to me, like we could go swab those bathroom floors and see if either of these kids is unhealthy.

This is true, we could have. I don’t know how much faith I have in those disinfectant wipes.

Fave Memory #2:

My sweet, sweet, giving and grateful little boy.

I got all my shopping done early this year. G Monkey knew who every present under the tree was for. Every time someone came over to the house that had a gift under the tree he would run and get it for them and say, “You wanna open yo-were present?”

Santa gave G Monkey a Globe, a rocking horse (pogo stick) and a guitar. He comes out Christmas morning and sees what Santa has left.

G Monkey:  Wow, a guitar. Hey, I could use that.

Famous and Ma’am Juwee won the best present award. They gave G Monkey all the Mickey Mouse characters. 8″ Donald, Mickey, Goofy,Pluto, Minnie, and… Hey, Where’s Daisy?

Apparently there was a run on Daisy at Toys R Us.

They had wrapped each character doll in individual boxes. So after a couple of characters G Monkey caught on to the pattern. After he had opened them all but Daisy, he would open every gift after that saying, “Maybe it’s Daisy?” Even if it was clearly a book or a gift for someone else.

I hear he did this with every gift later in the day at his Daddy’s house as well.

He continued this “Maybe it’s Daisy” business for the next couple of weeks. Every time I opened the mail box or unloaded grocery bags, “Maybe it’s Daisy?”

We told G Monkey that Daisy was on a cruise.

Yesterday he was sleepy. It was about 4 o’clock. We were going to change clothes and go to the park. I pulled up to the mailbox to check the mail and guess who popped out???


Yes! She is home from her cruise.

Well, the park was out of the question after that grand surprise. We HAD to play with Daisy… That elusive Ducktress.

True Story: rocks!

{August 26, 2010}   Reptiles and Amphibians

True Story:  Never been a fan.

These two bi-atches that I have been friends with my whole life, know that these two species of God’s creatures are on the very bottom of my poopy list.

Many years ago when I was about 15, the three of us we were swimming in my pool at night. They were giggling over in the corner of the pool acting all suspicious. All of the sudden they jumped on me, pulled the front of my bathing suit down, and dumped a frog in there.

Me:  AAAAHHHHH! (Freaking out trying to find the little slimy thing through boobs and french fry fat rolls)

 I am shivering with disgust as I type this… Ugh… Willies.

They laughed and laughed and laughed. Meanwhile, I have been totally scarred for life. This horrible nightmare is being recalled, because last night on my back porch, a frog jumped up on the arm of my chair. I nearly had a heart attack.

True Side note:  The MIL is obsessed with all disgusting creatures.

She also thinks it’s funny to shove gross things in my face. Once at the beach she was collecting sea shells and came running up holding a quivering, gelatin form of something alive and goes, “Look what I found. It’s so cool”. She shoves it two inches from my eyeballs… I just threw up a little bit thinking about it.

This is a woman who also has a dead bug collection in her house and takes sweet little hermit crabs and pulls the bodies out and lets them dry and die, so she can keep the shells. It’s kind of like killing elephants for their tusks, on a much smaller and legal scale.

True Story:  Better her than me on the little boy fascination with gross stuff. She and G Monkey can bond about that.

{August 22, 2010}   Fo Real

True Story:  It takes all kinds.

Pump told me yesterday that he walked in his house (living with his Mom currently) and found her lying on the bed eating, watching his copy of PX90 (Extreme Body Workout).

Pump:  Mom, what are you doing?

MIL:  This guy’s an a**hole.

Pump:  What?!?! Why?

MIL:  He keeps telling me how good all this sh*t feels. He’s an a**hole.

True Story:  I have never heard of anyone watching a work out video for entertainment. All mine are in a drawer collecting dust.

{May 25, 2010}   There are Always Options

True Story:  My MIL has taught me there are MANY ways to get rid of a husband.

A few years ago she told me that a particular amount of crushed up apple seeds ingested by a bad husband could kill him. She just thought I might need to know that.

Most recently she said with all the sincerity in the world, “If I could just find him (her husband) someone else, he could love her, and I could do my own thing”.

True Story:  Current husband is #5

{April 8, 2010}   Skinny Bitches

True Story:  Some skinny girls have been known to make people sick.

No lie. I’m not being ugly. This is serious business. My sister L, has some sort of medical, anatomy phobia.

She doesn’t like anybody to talk about veins ( V Words), or organs, or illnesses, or anything of this nature. If an ambulance passes by, she gets a little queasy.

Me on the other hand, I actually think I’m a doctor. Seriously. I’ve had zero medical training, other than being a lifeguard and a mother, but I really feel like I have a grasp on the subject.

If I’ve been drinking and you have a health problem… You better watch out… I’m not afraid to just come on out with a diagnoses.

So, L and I, years ago, were attending  an Alabama football game. We were sitting on the edge of the student section, which is basically a 3rd world country, i.e. starving, poor sick kids yelling, shouting, and holding their hands out.

So, we’re watching the game, enjoying ourselves…  All of the sudden, I look at my sister and she is rocking back and forth in her “Safety Position” holding her wrists together.

Me:  What are you doing?

L:  Uh, uh…

Me:  What’s wrong?!?

She just points to her right.

I look over and finally see what she’s talking about.

There is a young lady thinner than I’ve ever see in my LIFE.

Now I’m no virgin. I’ve seen all kinds in my day. But this girl was SKINNY. I could have snapped her little legs in two like a toothpick.  I thought she was going to shatter right there in the stands.

Every time her date, and I use the term date loosely at an SEC football game, would put his arm around her, I would instinctively raise up off the bench and go, “No..No… be careful. You might break her”.

I mean no disrespect whats so ever. I know that anorexia is a disease. I suffer from many many addictive, mental, and bodily diseases… I get that.

I’m just trying to paint a picture here.

So I say to L:  Yep, she’s skinny. I hear ya.  It’s pretty gross.

L:  (still rocking back & forth, holding her wrists together, and crying a little)  Her V words are sticking out all over the place… And her B words.

That would be Veins & Bones for you lay people.

True Story:  Young ladies, before you hit that diet, or “gateway” method, know this… Fat people are happy too. See it all the time. I’m just saying…

{March 15, 2010}   Done it a thousand times

True Story:  My dad has done everything.

Somewhere along the way, my dad, mother, brother, brother-in law and myself learned everything. It ‘s like a divine miracle that all of us ended up in the same family and we all know the very best way to do EVERYTHING.

Just ask us.

We each know exactly how to grill meat, make coffee, drive a car, which movies are best, load a dishwasher, make a cocktail, which wine to serve, how to punish a child, when a child should go to bed, what kind of illness you have, how many times you should wipe your ass and so on …

Lots o’ Chiefs.

The cool thing about my dad is he doesn’t know he’s a chief. His mild-mannered personality allows his chiefdom to slip in there.

His Famous (by the way, that’s his nickname,) line is:

“I’ve done it a thousand times”.  Sometimes this ends with Child, his nickname for me.

Done it a thousand times child.


1)  Dad:  Oh, Pole Vaulting?  Done it a thousand times….

2)  Me:   I didn’t sleep well last night.

Dad:  me neither…  Hadn’t slept in years…

3)  Me:  The traffic was bad today…

Dad:  Worst it’s ever been. Period.

Every statement has a finality.


1)  Finest fish you have ever put in your mouth… Ever… Period… Period…

So, it’s always fun for Pump and I to tell Dad about something new we are excited about. Because, of course, he’s already done it.

Us:  So, you’ll never guess what happened today. We were driving down the road and decided to pull over to the  beach.

Dad:  Oh, yeah… Know it well.

Us:  We were watching the sun set when a black bear swam up out of the gulf.

Dad:  Yep, seen it a thousand times.

Us:  He walked up to the car and asked if he could buy us a drink.

Dad:  I know it… That’s what he always does.

Cute True Story sidenote:  I mentioned my dad avoids un-pleasantries, right?

When Pump and the Vampire got busted having an affair, I called my dad and told him about it.

Dad:  Seen it a thousand times… Want to come over for crab?

{March 1, 2010}   1st time I met the MIL

True Story:  This is just one of the MANY conversations about sex that I have had with my MIL (mother in law).

The first time I met my MIL I was just a potential girlfriend at the time. I must have liked Pump cause I drove over 10 hours to see him for a long weekend.

Bleary-eyed after driving so long I stopped and bought a 6 pack and a plant for my sorta-boyfriend’s mother who was so graciously letting me stay at her home.  I’m southern after all.

I walk in and she and Pump are in the kitchen. We make our introductions. Then I’m told I am staying upstairs in Pump’s room with him. Now, even though I am a grown woman, this is not what I expected. I had not been around parents that would look at me like I was crazy for thinking I would stay in my own room. We weren’t even living in sin yet.

So, that evening, Pump, myself and some of his friends go out and get a little drunk. Back at Pump’s house that night he is taking a bath. He has been sick to his stomach and now needs a bath.

True Story:  The kid takes at least 2 baths a day. I’ve never met anybody that “needs” baths as much as he does.

Anywho, he’s in the bath, and I’m sitting on the toilet talking to him. He has long eye lashes and the water is dripping off of them. I really notice his eyes for the first time.

Me:  You have pretty eyes.

Pump (drunkenly):  I know… It’s all I’ve got.

I think this is hilarious. So, the next day I am trying to make conversation with my future MIL. This is only the second time we’ve spoken. She is ironing her nursing uniform and I say, “You won’t believe what your son did last night…

She puts her iron down and looks at me with her hands on her hips.

MIL:  He tried to have sex with you, didn’t he?

Me (shocked):  Well, yes… But that’s not what I was going to tell you.

True Story:  When she talks about the first time she met me, she likes to tell large rooms full of people, that I showed up at her house with beer, a plant and I had a little skirt on, and my belly was sticking out, and I just didn’t care. I was just so confident.

True Story: I assure you, if I had known a fat roll was sticking out I wouldn’t have been so confident.

{February 19, 2010}   The In-Laws

True Story:  My in-laws are nuttier than yours.

I have 2 father in-laws. One whistles when you talk about anything other than him… What? He’s bored.

The other one doesn’t care either way. Example:

Me:  Can I get you something to drink K?

K:  I don’t care?

Me:   WTF?

My Mother in-law, God love her, deserves her own entire blog/book/documentary. I am so grateful for her. She takes care of my son all the time. He is 2 1/2 and I can count on 1 hand how many times I have paid a babysitter. That being said, Lawd have Mercy, that woman is Nuts!

Off the top of my head:  After 5 husbands she legally changed her last name to a word from the Klingon dictionary (this is the language of Trekkies, BTW) to a word that means, One who endures.

She loves to put temporary tattoos all over my son’s body, particularly on days when I am taking him to preschool at the church.

She loves her son to pieces, would do anything for him, and reminds me everyday what a no-good dirty ashtray he is.

Sidenote:  She told me years ago that he would cheat on me. She was right.

She cusses like a sailor. Her favorite lines are, “That is so GD cute!” Or “That is so expensive”.

As I write this I realize, she’s awesome. Never boring, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

et cetera