Mar 252021

Hello. In today’s tour around my dumb house, we will focus on the nook in my bedroom where I used to do my painting when I was actually inspired to do art. I still have paint ALL OVER THE DESK TOP like I’m trying to prove that I actually used to do creative things.

OK, so let’s look at some of the shit on the walls and on the desk and I will type out a few descriptions because that’s just how we’re going to do this.

Here are some clowns (I think these ones were gifted to me by friend Patty but I have three other clowns that are vaguely similar and those ones might be from her?!? The perils of having tons of clowns in your house –  the origins become murky!

Behind them is the Father Day’s portrait I made for Henry a few years ago which he is apparently too embarrassed to take to his office, that’s fine. He never took Chooch’s art piece either. That is what I would call UNGRATEFUL. Maybe that’s just me!

Here we have the blue jay tealight holder that was used as a centerpiece at the table I was sitting at when I went to a MORMON WOMENS CONFERENCE for an essay I was writing for a class at Pitt. This was one of those things that made my inner-self scream WHAT HAVE I GOTTEN MYSELF INTO but then ended up being such a memorable and interesting experience. I loved that class and the way it pushed my boundaries. Anyway, the Mormon missionary who invited me to the dinner was a total gem and every time I look at this (which I have since dusted and scraped of wax residue after looking at this picture), I am filled with such warm memories!

(Henry was totes shocked that I didn’t convert after this, tbh.)

Behind it is a silver box that I bought in Canberra, Australia! It holds my sacred charm bracelet and my Pappap’s diamond pinky ring that he wanted me to have when he died but then my family played a two decade long game of keep-away because they thought I’d pawn it. I HAVE NO SOUR GRAPES ABOUT THAT OR ANYTHING LOL.

Also behind it is STEVE FROM THE HIPPO from a previous THINGS AROUND MY HOUSE post maybe you remember if you’re a LONGTIME READER. (Or at least have been reading for the past year because this post was from almost exactly a year ago lol.)

Limited edition screen print from the DGD 10 year anniversary tour. That was a….very strange night because it was after I finally knocked Jonny Craig off the pedestal of my heart and started to see him for what he really is: a toxic man who manipulates, abuses, assaults and turns women into addicts. But, he was there that night because the BIG DRAW of this tour was that the two former singers (Jonny and Kurt Travis) were reprising their roles alongside current singer Tillian Pearson. Back when I decided to paint this wall pink, I knew that this print was going to be the centerpiece.

That prayer card is from my birth dad’s funeral – morbid much? I have a collection of prayer cards – the one in the picture below is from my Aunt Cecilia who died when I was like 1 or 2 and I have no memory of her aside from the fact that the furniture in our guest room in the first house I grew up in was hers and the whole room had that really heavy, antique-y scent to it. I also remember that there was green and pink taffy-like candy in one of the desk drawers and I ate it, thinking I was really showing my mom who was boss because I feel like I wasn’t supposed to be hanging out in that room, only to find out later that it was literally sticky tack. Also, fun fact, Cecilia is my confirmation name.

Also, Fall Out Boy concert ticket from before they became MTV and I Heart Radio darlings, and an ICP concert ticket which makes me laugh every time I look at it, what a night.

Here is one of my favorite pictures of my beloved Marcy, nee Marciples von Schlugenhusen. I miss her every single fucking day. Above her is a bumper sticker from the Day After Day soap pop-up at Ader Error in Seoul:

Chooch and Blake Pumpkinhead.

I kept this china cup that I found when I was cleaning out my aunt Sharon’s room a few years ago. I only just recently moved it from a curio cabinet to my desk and that’s when I noticed that there was still a Chinese price sticker on it. I have a VAGUE recollection of Sharon mentioning that she had been to China, but I asked my mom because I am a SRS BLOGGER who likes to collect the FACTS. My mom didn’t have a lot of information to provide aside from yes, Sharon had visited China and it was before I was born, so sometime in the 70s, I’d imagine. Sharon worked in the Sports Medicine department of the University of Pittsburgh for-fucking-ever (all the way up the early 2000s) and according to my mom, this was a work-related trip and she was accompanying Dr. Freddie Fu, an orthopedic surgeon so world renown, he has his own Wiki page.

This is so interesting to me! One of the many times I have wished a close relative was still alive so that I can ask questions for my imaginary book.

(Fun fact: whenever I would butt into adult convos as a kid, my Pappap would ask, “Are you writing a book? Well, leave this chapter out.” Lol. I think about that probably once a week, not gonna lie.)

Marquis de Sade painting from an unknown painting, taken from my grandparents’ clown room. The piece above it is from an artist in Seoul. I bought it from her in Insadong on our first trip!

Here is a photo of my bro Corey and me at the world’s largest cuckoo clock in Sugarcreek Ohio!

Chooch with Bradley Walden from Emarosa; another beautiful photo of Marcy <3

Framed photo of my Pappap that I used to keep on my desk when I worked at the shitty meat factory so the owners would be constantly reminded of the family I came from; a REALLY DAMAGED Polaroid of the time my BFF Christy “married” my brother Corey in our basement and I was the flower girl. Fun fact: SHE WAS ALREADY MARRIED TO MY OTHER BROTHER RYAN!! They married one summer before Corey was born, on a hammock in our backyard. I have a vivid memory of Ryan coming out of the house with some kind of snack – Twizzlers maybe? – and when I reached for me, he withdrew his hand real quick and snapped, “These are for my babe!”

Dance Gavin Dance lyrics handwritten by Tillian! The mat is custom-made by Henry.

Popcorn container from Everland in Korea! I use it as a purse and then people are like I LIKE YOUR PURSE OMG and Chooch gets mad.

Some reading material! One of my lovely Instagram friends, Tousled Elegance, sent me this AWESOME Cure comic several years ago – let me just tell you that it’s not easy for people to find Cure memorabilia that I don’t already have, so this was really exciting!

Well, that’s it for the former art nook. I think I am going to hang more pictures on the pink wall though and I definitely want to get a neon strawberry sign to complement the Dance Gavin Dance 10th anniversary print!

Um, I was going to make some empty promise that one day my blog posts will be exciting again but then I remembered that they never really were, pandemic or no pandemic oh hahaha ugh.

Mar 162021

Oh you guys, you guys, you guys, oh you guys. We took a short road trip to Keystone State Park (only abut an hour away) for some Nature Time and it was JUST WHAT I NEEDED, to quote the ineffable Ric Ocasek. I have been trying very hard to maintain perspective and keep my privilege in check during the past pandemic’d year but trying to remain diligent about social distancing and borderline quarantining in conjunction with DREADED WINTER has really made me crack. So when I saw that it was going to be sunny and mild on Sunday, I screamed at Henry to find somewhere to go and of course he didn’t so I was like “CAN’T WE GO TO  THAT PLACE WE WENT THAT ONE TIME AND THE PARK RANGER WAS LIKE ‘HERE IS A TRAIL YOU CAN TAKE’ AND YOU WERE LIKE ‘THANKS CUZ’ AND THEN WROTE A LETTER TO YOUR MOMMY ABOUT HOW A PARK RANGER PAID ATTENTION TO YOU” and surprisingly, Henry knew exactly where I meant. I mean, after TWENTY YEARS OF DATING, you get the psychic equivalent of synced menstrual cycles.

It started off semi-annoying because we wanted to get lunch from Sheetz first but the app was being a piece of shit and wouldn’t accept my order so Henry ended up having to go in and order in person and apparently they were having a problem with the system because all three of my orders actually did go through lolololol. I love their veggie wraps (it’s the BOOM BOOM sauce that makes it, guys) so I would have gladly taken all three but I guess they were smart enough to know that the others were dupes so they only made one.

PROBABLY FOR THE BEST because I always get it loaded with jalapenos and banana pepper rings which would have made for an uncomfortable car ride home probably.

It was windy on Sunday, which is why Chooch looks like he’s trying to hold his head in place post-decap.


The first 30 minutes or so was dicey because Chooch was being a surly teenager and I was like THIS SUCKS WHY DID WE BRING HIM but then we eventually remembered how to publicly family again.

Chooch found this stick  immediately upon exiting the car and subsequently spawned an unhealthy attachment, as he is wont to do with inanimate objects – he must get that from Henry.

Yeah, from Henry.

There was a public restroom up ahead that  Henry and Chooch stopped at and then after we started walking again, Chooch realized he left that dumb stick at the bathroom and was wavering on whether or not to go back to get it. I mean, we have only been walking for about a minute before he realized so we hadn’t gone that far but I started goading him for being TOO SCARED to go back alone and he was like STFU and ran back to get it. I noticed a set of steps leading down to a little clearing near the water, and it was situated in such a way that you couldn’t really see it from the main path, so I giddily whispered to Henry, “LET’S HIDE FROM HIM.” Henry actually went along with it, I guess because it didn’t require any squatting, crouching, or squeezing between things.

It was HI-LARRY-OUS to watch Chooch run back with his reclaimed stick, continue running right past us, slow down eventually and start looking all around, frantically. Of course Henry was like LET US NOT TRAUMATIZE THE CHILD and ended the game way sooner than I would have liked but it was still super fun, especially when Chooch kept saying he wasn’t scared BECAUSE HE WAS TOTALLY SCARED.

Hiding from and scaring people is honestly my national past time. It gives me THE BIGGEST THRILL. Like riding my own make believe roller coaster in my mind!! (WHILE HIDING BEHIND TREES, ROCKS, CURTAINS, ETC.)

My giddy growler was uncorked at this point and EVERYTHING WAS SIDE-SPLITTINGLY FUNNY TO ME….

Like when we came upon some signage with BAT INFORMATION on it and inspected the neighboring BAT HABITAT and Chooch said, “What if a person fell out, like Lost Boys” and then Henry started to say, “When I was a kid—-”

and I cut him off to say, “A VAMPIRE FELL OUT OF YOUR HOUSE?” and then I couldn’t stop laughing at the thought of Young Henry hiding under a couch from a vampire. (I was about to type here what Henry actually said but I couldn’t remember so I just asked Chooch, who originally tried to walk away as soon as I said “vampire” because this whole scene was so annoying to him, but then he heard me out and said, “He never got to finish his sentence because you cut him off and then wouldn’t stop laughing!”)

You guys, I laughed every bad feeling and thought out of my body that afternoon, I really think I did. I mean, I was SO SET OFF that I had to keep squatting down to keep from peeing my pants and then I was sobbing at one point because that’s what happens when I laugh too hard – my brain gets confused and starts thundering, then HOLA!!! HERE COME THE TEARS!

There were other people around too and they probably Really Wondered about me. Like, Really Really.

And then out of the blue, Chooch said to the surrounding trees, “And thanks to the Vampire Act of 1892, we never had to worry about vampires again” and now I was practically puking, why was this so funny, this dumb  comment about vampires next to a stupid lake in some place called KEYSTONE STATE PARK.


I had to pretend like I was interested in reading this plaque so I could hide my ugly laugh-contorted face from passers-by. These poor people, thinking they could come out to KEYSTONE STATE PARK for a nice peaceful stroll and here I am, emitting my shrieky cackle into the air, sending volaries of birds ca-cawing off to the horizon.

And by the way, fuck off, Harry Miller.

j/k sir, you seem nice.

Then I started laughing again, imagining a young Hank being terrorized by Eddie Munster; I had to bury my head in Henry’s side, so he asked, “What are you laughing at?” but I couldn’t answer so Chooch sighed and said, “Seriously? She’s still laughing at that dumb vampire comment from like 20 minutes ago” and it turns out that Henry had no idea that any of this had even happened. Like, I had just been acting like a live-action commercial for laughing gas for all this time and he just didn’t notice?!

Tried to take a selfie of Henry and me right here but couldn’t my face to relax so I looked like claymation, lol.

So Chooch took one and I look so dumb because I was on the precipice of more laughter. OMG my face hurts at the memory of all the laughing I did that day.

Then Chooch noticed that Henry had somehow acquired a walking stick too, and was complaining about it because Chooch is the only person in the world who can have walking sticks, so I said, “but he needs it for slaying vampires” except that it came out as, “HE NEEDS DGDDSDAUGDAUUDHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAOMGOWWWWWWWWW!!!!”

I can’t believe they didn’t push me in the lake.

Then we had to stop at the same Sheetz that got all 3 of my veggie wrap orders so that I could pee before my giddiness caused me to give birth to a pee-baby, and it occurred to me that it was the first time I peed in a Sheetz since before the pandemic and that was a weird thought.


Later that night, I tried to explain the vampire thing to Henry but I was laughing so hard all over again that I couldn’t breathe and then I started choking and Henry just stared at me.

What a great excursion! It almost felt like things were normal again. It also reminded me of when Chooch and I were so fucking giddy in Jongno and Henry was so angry haha.

Mar 142021

I’m relaxing after spending some time in The Great Outdoors with my fam, so I thought, WOW WHAT A GREAT TIME TO WRITE ON MY BLOG. Last week was pretty OK and I have some photos to prove it, so…shall we? Literally, all of my week consists of is: work, cats, squirrels, exercise. Rinse, repeat. But I was able to scrounge up some other shit to memorialize, lucky you.

First, on Tuesday I got the new SHINee album in the mail (it arrived during my dreaded weekly work meeting so that was nice timing) and then later that day, I got a big box of delights from Olive Young – straight from Korea! They were having a big sale and I always justify buying extra in order to hit that free shipping sweet spot, lol.

OMG these almonds (well, not this flavor specifically, but the brand) are SO POPULAR in Korea. We maxed out on the honey butter flavor both times we were there and they were building an entire store for these almonds when we were there the second time! I hope we go back again because I want to go to that store and buy all the flavors. We brought back a bunch last time but IT WAS NOT ENOUGH. I don’t remember them having this baked corn flavor last time so I giddily added it to the cart and can now confirm that they are delicioso. (There’s actual dried corn kernals in the package too!)

But anyway, this SHINee photo book is absolute fucking art. I am in awe of the photography within these pages. I got the Onew photocard! My friend Nate was asking me about the album the other day at work and totally opened Pandora’s Box because I just started typing uncontrollably and then he Googled Onew I guess because he was happy to tell me that he and Onew are the same height. So then I shared with him one of their recent live performances of Heart Attack and he asked, “I bias his yellow sweater. Is that how that works?” LOL.

Of course the Taemin pages are my faves but can we take a moment to appreciate the beauty that is Onew? I  think if Taemin wasn’t in SHINee, Onew would be my bias. He is also disturbingly underrated as a vocalist.

The twin to my own bird photo!

It was sickeningly spring-esque on Wednesday, so Chooch and I went for a much-needed lunch break walk. The weather has just been so shitty this winter that I have not been motivated to go on lunch break walks and have instead been doing walking workouts in the house, or walking in place while watching TV. This makes me sad, because when we were working in the office pre-pandemic, there was very little that kept me at my desk for my lunch break. Granted, there were times when I came back sopping back because my iPhone weather app lied to me and I left without an umbrella, but I always got my fucking steps in.

ANYWAY. We went to Muddy Cup which is a place we love to support because every one who works there is so wonderful and their coffee is fantastic, but more often than not they have been fucking up our orders lately. This last time, I didn’t realize I was overcharged until after we left – the owner added a $3 iced tea to our order! I was going to go back and tell her, but then I got distracted because some young guy zoomed past us on his bicycle, blasting “Head Over Heels” by Tears for Fears which made me shout, “I LOVE THAT SONG” and Chooch said, “Wow. I feel like I’m in an 80s movie” and then I was in a great mood and forgot all about the overcharging but now that I’m typing this and reliving the injustice, I’m getting angry again. Is it too late to go back and complain!?!? It’s been 5 days. Lol.

A few minutes later, we were walking past a bookstore and I always like to stop and call out all the books I’ve read because it infuriates Chooch, and that is when I noticed….



That I’m going to fall down a set of steps, probably.

In more consumer news, I finally took the plunge and bought a variety pack of this cereal that I kept getting ads for on Instagram. I went as far as adding them to my cart a few weeks ago but I am a very wishy washy online shopper in that I often need some sense of justification before completing a transaction. I don’t really buy much on a whim, which kind of goes against my Leo/bi-polar-ness. But then my friend Bridget mentioned this cereal on her IG stories last week and I was like BUT ARE THEY GOOD and she said she genuinely likes them and that was the push I needed. They arrived the other day and I am happy to report that this cereal REALLY IS GOOD. I mean, they’re not “AS GOOD” as the cereal brands they were created to replace, but they are just sweet enough without making you feel like you’re eating diet food, and because the protein count is so high, I am so satiated and not looking to lunch at 9:30am like I normally would be after having a bowl of regular cereal for breakfast.

I approve, and now I want to try the other flavors.

Also can we talk about how pleasing the packaging is!??!

Obligatory Penelope picture and BUDDY VIDEO!


Mar 112021

Not a whole lot happened, but some things did happen, and here are those things.

I started watching Ginny & Georgia on Netflix. I never heard of it until I saw it featured on Friday and I thought to myself, “OK I could go for some light family sitcom bullshit right about now” but wow that show had some dark moments! Anyway, I did that thing that I always do when I’m watching TV which is spend an absurd amount of time on IMDB and HOLY SHIT that show has a ton of Degrassi grads on it! So many that there is actually a BuzzFeed article about it?!

Then there is this one girl who was in one episode and at a glance she reminded me of someone, and then I finally realized it was the “girl from that Superman show. The new-ish one. The one that was on the WB or whatever…you know…..SMALLVILLE!” I screamed at Henry. Wow, that one almost gave me a stroke from all the mind-strain. So then of course I had to look up Smallville to find the name of the girl (Kristen Kreuk) because I wanted to see if they were related (they are not). THEN a few minutes later I was looking up another person from Ginny & Georgia and he was in a movie or show with….KRISTEN KREUK. Literally, this is a person who I haven’t thought of since I used to wear whatever those fake UGGs were called in the early 2000s and now she was coming up twice in 10 minutes, I was screaming.

Man, what were those fake UGGs called? I remember my friend Stacey made fun of me for wearing them because she said I didn’t seem like the type, but they were so comfortable to wear to haunted houses!!!

EMUs!! They were called EMUs, lololol.

AnyHOO, I binged that whole mothercheffin’ show over the weekend and have none regertz. NONE REGERTZ.

On one of Henry’s many trips to The Store, he came back with “toys” for Chooch and nothing for Drew and me. That wasn’t really a memorable moment but I liked this picture and wanted to INCLUDE IT IN THIS BLOG POST OK?

(In case you ever wondered, yes, I type EXTRA HARD AND ANGRY when I’m CAPSCREAMING.)

I don’t remember how it happened, but Henry and I ended up watching a “Top 100 Kpop Videos as of March 2021” video countdown on YouTube. We’ve watched these in the past – it just shows you a couple seconds of each video with stats at the bottom, like what number the video peaked at, what position it was in last month, etc. It’s really annoying now though because the more popular BTS gets, the more their psycho fans go back and stream every single video so they are ALL OVER these countdowns. (And Twice. And Blackpink.) Henry and I were getting so angry about it (especially considering these isn’t a single SHINee video on it anymore – don’t worry though, BIGBANG is still representing!) that you would have thought we were watching a sports thing if you had walked by because we were both standing up in front of the TV (wait, I think only Henry was, but I was lurched forward on the couch, high anxiety), SHOUTING OUR GUESSES and acting like true ridiculous dumbasses. When it got to the Top 10, I was screaming shit like, “IT BETTER NOT BE ALL BTS!” and Henry was like, “THERE WILL PROBABLY BE AT LEAST ONE MORE BLACKPINK!” and I started screaming all the BTS songs that hadn’t appeared yet and every single one of my guesses was in the Top 10 (BTS-wise) and that brought us to the #1 spot. I remembered that only the Hyuna version of Gangnam Style had appeared on the list thus far, so I yelled, “WAIT! IT COULD STILL BE PSY!”

AND THEN IT WAS!!! IT WAS PSY’S GANGNAM STYLE!!! Henry and I were screaming like the Pens just won the Stanley Cup, we were THAT happy it wasn’t BTS, lol.

However, seeing some of those older BTS videos made me yearn for their pre-Americanized era. I used to really like them so much! And I still have nothing against them, just their toxic fans.

Then Henry and I went to Target and talked about our old Riot Fest memories for some reason and then I couldn’t remember the name of the band La Dispute and spent the whole ride to Target and the entire time walking around Target trying to remember but all I could think of was the one song where he screams CAN I STILL GET INTO HEAVEN IF I KILL MYSELF and anyway, I clearly remembered at some point that it was La Dispute since I already said it. Try to keep up.

But man, we had some really good times at Riot Fest! Too bad it got shitty.

The next day, Henry was “at The Store” again and someone knocked on the door! I was scared!! But I thought maybe it was just HNC so I opened it cautiously. It was not HNC but some older Yinzer lady holding a CLIPBOARD. Oh boy. My favorite.  She was collecting signatures so her boss could be a judge or something, I don’t know, I’m a really bad listener. Her approach was very LOOK I DON’T WANT TO BE DOING THIS which is honestly something I could appreciate because I feel like that would be my lead-in too. I mean, she wasn’t asking for money or for me  to sign up for some fly-by-night utility company that would up forwarding my calls to a local tattoo parlor (this is a true story and the guy who owned that place was NOT HAPPY because this was back when I didn’t have a cell phone and people used to actually call my house a lot, see also: pre-Henry, when I had a life). While I was signing her dumb petition, she peered around me and in her thick smoker’s voice, she croaked, “WHOA YOU HAVE A REALLY COOL HOUSE. YOU REALLY DO!” and I was like “Wow thanks I’m so glad that the first person to see my DIY updates is some rando collecting signatures for her boss with a matchbook law degree. But still, I was happy that someone saw  it and liked it! However, she went next door after that,  to Blake’s, and I heard her says, “OH, AREN’T YOU A DOLL!” to one of Henry’s grandkids so now I’m not sure I can trust this lady’s opinion.

(J/k but they do sound like lil monstas on the other side of our wall lol.)

Henry was cleaning the bedroom and I was like LET ME SEE IF THERE ARE ANY CLOTHES THAT I CAN GET RID AWAY. Negative. I’m a clotheshorse. I love all of my clothes and will not part with them. However, I thought that maybe I could reorganize my dresser drawers since my method of putting away clothes is balling them up and punching them into an already-overstuffed drawer and then using the HIP-BUMP method to close it. So I dumped the first drawer out on the bed and Henry was like “here do it like this” and I thought that he would just DO IT FOR ME but sadly this story DOES NOT HAVE A FAIRY TALE ENDING because he only demonstrated on two shirts and then went back to his own stuff?!!?!? SO I HAD TO FOLD EVERYTHING MYSELF?? IT TOOK ALL DAY! (He said it was only an hour but this is *my* sob story not his, so.)

Then I wanted cauliflower pizza for dinner so that is what Henry made me:

And that was my weekend. It was OK! The weather was fairly decent I think but I can’t remember because it’s Thursday now and who cares.

Mar 032021

For the first time in a year, I’ve allowed myself to feel the TINIEST SPARK OF HOPE over the promise that all US adults will be able to get vaccinated by the end of May. I’m just really tired of being so doom & gloom and purposely pessimistic in order to prevent let downs and I just want a moment of hope.

Cautious optimism.


And maybe because it’s now March, which is always (until last year) historically a good mental month for me (except for that time I tried to kill myself in 2000 but I digress), and maybe it’s because today was sunny and in the 50s and I didn’t cry at all, but I just felt a sudden jolt of THIS WILL END AT SOME POINT giddiness. So I started thinking, “Erin, what are the first things you are going to do when it’s safe to do the things again?” and my mind exploded like a Gallagher watermelon, because SO MANY THINGS!

I want to go to Kennywood! I want to go to as many amusement parks, post-vaccination, as possible! I won’t even complain about standing in line! I won’t publicly fight with Henry when overtaken by hanger and then demand that we leave (it’s always a bluff though). I won’t whine about looking “old and ugly” in the on-ride photos! JUST STUFF ME IN A FUCKING ROLLER COASTER!

I want to eat in a restaurant!!!! All of the restaurants!!!! Which one first!?!? Zenith? BLUE FLAME?? TILLIES???

I want to go on a stupid road trip to see stupid roadside attractions and I promise I won’t even complain when Henry books us a room in the Cecil Hotel – Wisconsin branch. And I won’t bitch when Henry pulls over at the 87th rest stop to piss. Or when Chooch mouths off from the backseat.

I want to see my brother Corey’s new house!!! And go on bizarre day trips with him to wineries and Amish country, where we will start cracking up uncontrollably and everyone will hate us!!

I want to go to the Hollywood Theater and see a horror movie with Chooch and Janna! And sit in the balcony with a bottle of Ramune!!!

I want to have breakfast at Pamela’s with Jeannie and Wendy!!!

I want to see the Armor For Sleep reunion show that got canceled last summer and has been continuously rescheduled!!! AND MAYBE KPOP WILL COME TO AMERICA AGAIN?? MAYBE I CAN FINALLY SEE SHINEE?!!?

I want to have a party!!! Possibly not even THEMED, just a regular fucking “Come hang out & let me look at you!!” party!! THAT SOUNDS WEIRD AND I DON’T CARE. I MISS THE FACES OF MY FRIENDS.

I want to go to Sugar Spell and EAT MY ICE CREAM INSIDE and talk to the lovely owners!!!

I want the death count to stop going up!!!! Which is why even though I could have been doing a lot of these things for the last year, I have opted to stay home!

Oh dear lord, I am so ready. I am not thriving. I know I’m not alone in that corner. I’m not a super social person, and while I can’t complain about the convenience and comfort of working from home, I miss seeing all of my friends in the office and going on lunch break walks. (I DO NOT MISS THE TROLLEY THOUGH.) So I think even just getting back into a daily routine will GREATLY elevate my mindset.

And I’m ready for the day when we can viably and safely reschedule our Germany/Netherlands/Belgium trip because our refunded $$$ is doing the equivalent of a Facebook poke to me everyday. YES I KNOW YOU ARE THERE AND YES I AM DYING TO SPEND THE SHIT OUT OF YOU.

This was in my Korean practice tonight FML.

My entire basis of existing is built around “going somewhere” and I have felt so lost this past year. Obviously, if I have to do this shit for another fucking year, I will. BUT I WILL NOT BE HAPPY ABOUT IT.

Man, imagine if actual professionals who believed in science were in charge when this first happened.

Oh well. Here are some pictures of my cats.

Peace out, pee spout. (I JUST MADE THAT UP DON’T STEAL IT.)


Jan 292021

I’m really struggling here. I love writing in this space so much but it’s hard when there is nothing to say because there is nothing to do. (Side note: not whining, happy to stay home and do my part in not spreading Covid, but you know what I mean!)

So for today I thought it would fun(-ish?) to do a picture or three every hour throughout the day. I mean, I’ll mostly be chained to my desk working, but maybe it will give me inspiration to look out the back porch windows or something. Maybe HNC will be doing something exciting in the backyard. You never know!

So to start, here are some pre-8AM photos of my breakfast adventures. I used to just be a bowl of cereal type of bitch, but since the kitchen isn’t a junkyard anymore, I sort of cook now! (I mean, barely.)

My breakfast is always a mix of vegan/vegetarian stuffs. Almost always some type of egg beaters, vegan cheese, vegan deli meats, sometimes spinach but I couldn’t find it today (Henry?????), and toast. Note: the I Can’t Believe It’s Butter brand of vegan butter is SO FUCKING FOOD.

My ritual is telling Echo to play some type of 80s new wave mix or the Genesis “Invisible Touch” album while I’m breakfasting and cleaning up. It’s my go-to comfort album!

Now that Henry has a place to put all of our card-making supplies, I have a dining room table to eat at again!

8:00AM hour:

Time to feed the squirrels!

HNC was leaving for work when I was laying out the peanuts on the windowsill, so much for catching him doing interesting things outside today lol.

I like to have at least 1000 steps before I sit down to work at 9 so I usually spend my 8 o’clock hour either doing walking workouts or jogging in place while watching booktube or Kpop videos. My life is rich! Today I’m watching some “upcoming 2021 thrillers” round ups.

Mr. Grey Guy is the bistro’s first patron this morning!

Obligatory Chooch Check-In before I log on to work. He’s playing Minecraft in between classes. How thrilling. Also that lighter on his desk isn’t for his smoking habit, but his candle addiction.

9:00AM hour:

Time to chug water and work all day! Actually, I just sip water when I drink from a glass in lieu of my jug.

10:00am hour:

I was about to say I haven’t cried yet but that’s not true because there was a segment on the news interviewing young widows who lost their husbands to Covid and I immediately called Henry and begged him not to die. I hate that he still has to go to work but at least he’s largely working alone at his job. Sigh.

Speaking of Covid, we always get Chooch some type of Frozen or Disney Princess shit for Xmas to piss him off. This past Xmas he got Frozen hand sanitizer in his stocking:

11:00AM hour:

Chooch made cookies last night & I’m trying not to eat them all so I’m making coffee instead god help me.

Action shot of Chooch eating a cookie while making lunch in my 2005 Coachella hoodie which he has co-opted into his wardrobe.


Chooch was added to some spam/scam group message and just CANT HELP HIMSELF. Some guy included in this group actually called Chooch yesterday and threatened to turn him in lol good job Chooch.

They both lay under the church pew all day because the heat vent is there lol.

Also I had soup for lunch and it was ugly so I didn’t take a picture.

1:00PM HOUR:


Drew approves.

2:00PM HOUR:

I bought chooch this Keith Haring Swatch for getting good grades bc he loves Keith Haring.

C: Why do you want this picture

M: because I’m posting a picture every hour on my blog.

C: wow. That’s really interesting. I’m glad I asked.

3:00PM HOUR:


4:00PM HOUR:

Hello? IT’S FOR YOU.

5:00PM HOUR:

It’s Valentine Time! Well I technically have 30 minutes left at my day job then I can help. Henry is on his own for now lol (which he’s used to!).

Vegan egg salad & sides from Zenith! Picnic vibes.

6:00PM HOUR:

Needed steps so I walked to the teen center to meet Chooch (he goes twice a week – they have tight Covid regulations and every one wears a mask) and that was dumb because now I can’t feel my hands.

7:00PM HOUR:

Getting in some pages before it’s time to exercise!

8:00PM HOUR:

Starting phase 2 of Body Revolution! Love Jillian so much.

9:00PM HOUR:

Back at it!

10:00PM HOUR:

Time to start winding down, according to my FitBit!

Korean practice time!

Chooch is going through a box of Henry’s grandma’s recipe collection, some of which are cut out of magazines so that’s fun.

Well I have to rejoin the Valentine assembly line so peace out. This was…mildly fun. Well, not fun, but…

Jan 262021

Are you sick of seeing the dumb shit we’ve been doing around the house? Sorry, but there is NOTHING ELSE GOING ON IN MY LIFE RIGHT NOW. Work. Read. Exercise. Think of shit to change around the house.

That’s it. That’s my life.

Anyway, I wanted to show the new addition to the Cure sitting area that literally no one will be using anytime soon!

We had this ugly side table from Goodwill – I can’t remember why we bought it but I guess at some point I really had to have it. We originally had it painted black with a red glitter top which was never actually finished so the top got all shitty and it was impossible to clean.

Henry sanded it down and we painted it red with a pink top and I knew from the get go that I wanted the top to have lips on it to match the Robert Smith lips theme. Originally I was going to try and find some type of scrapbook paper, and then I moved on to looking for lip confetti. But then!

I found!

The most glorious!




OH BABY. These patches turned out to be exactly what I didn’t know I needed. I ordered several sets, Henry fucked everything up several times, but then eventually we got to the epoxy-pouring part. This is Henry’s least favorite DIY thing. He’s worked with epoxy before, back when we used to make pendants for my defunct art shop on Etsy. He pretty much hates epoxy. And it wasn’t his friend this time, either but he persevered (in between long nights of making serial killer Valentines – what even is our life, I have no idea).

It’s not perfect, but it’s level and works as a functioning table top, and that’s all that really matters!

The space that the table is living in is so dimly lit that you can’t even see the imperfections, anyway, but I did want to be up front about the fact that this project was not 100% perfect. Epoxy is no fucking joke. Henry suggested doing one pour to try and even out the swirls from where the plastic covering dropped on it and I screamed, “NO!” because with our luck, it will just make it worse! You literally can’t even see (or feel) the swirls unless you move the table into a brightly lit room. We always have the hall light set on pink in this area so it’s fine.

It’s the perfect table to display my copy of Charlotte Sometimes, gifted to me several years for my birthday by Sandy! (If you know the Cure, you know that they wrote their song “Charlotte Sometimes” about this book. If Chooch would have been a girl, his name was going to be Charlotte, and I was of course fighting for his middle name to be Sometimes, and I’m sure I eventually would have won that battle and 14-year-old Charlotte would probably really fucking hate me right now.)

And of course I needed a lip planter to really nature up the spot.

On the adjacent wall, there will eventually be a small shelf and at least two more The Cure pictures. I have this one screenprint from the Cure concert my brother Corey and I attended in Philly back in 2008, which still needs framed, but I think that would look really nice there too?!

I need a different rug for this space, though. I currently have my a red shag heart in my cart, but I JUST DON’T KNOW.

Jan 252021

For some reason, when we realized over the summer that Chooch likely would be doing school remotely, the thing I fixated on the most was, “But what about school pictures?” I know, I know – I have tons of photos of Chooch and it’s not like his 9th grade existence would be wiped out if he didn’t get a formal school picture taken on Picture Day, but it’s like…part of the process of school, you know? We always purchase the smallest portrait package possible just so we can have one 5×7 to frame for the “Chooch Wall”:

Probably no one else gave a shit about this, like I’m sure it’s the last thing the actual school was concerned about, but I kept wondering. “Maybe they will do something informal on a weekend sometime, where they schedule small blocks of kids…” I mused, to the silence of both Henry and Chooch who could not, between the two of them, even muster up one full fuck to give.

But then in a recent school newsletter, they said that because they were unable to offer a normal picture day, everyone was welcome to submit their own photo! (Of course there were guidelines so I couldn’t have him don a welders mask and stand in a tub full of empty Spam tins while wrapped in a 1970s afghan. Dumb rules.)

But x2! In another email, they said that a local photographer had offered to take headshots at a discounted rate, and I signed him up for that because as much as I would have loved to have had an elevated heart rate for an hour while fighting with him to cooperate with me for ONE PICTURE CAN YOU JUST GIVE ME ONE FUCKING PICTURE WITHOUT THAT SMIRK, I just wanted some slice of normalcy in these shitty Covid Times.

So that’s what happened on Saturday. I don’t know yet what the picture looks like but at least he’ll have a picture in the yearbook now!

Anyway, we’re going to redo that wall with all of his pictures on it and I always thought that he hated the fact that we have an entire wall with his pictures on it but when he heard me talking about repainting it, he asked in a panic, “Wait…is it still going to be my wall, though?” I said yes, and he sighed, “OK. Good.”

Lol, narcissist.

I’ve been really scrutinizing that wall though and I think that some pictures will be replaced with others of him, but every time I look at that wall I smile. Of course the school pictures are all boring and standard, but the other ones are so fun and as much as he hates doing these dumb photoshoots with me, I hope that one day when he’s an adult, he’ll look back on them and be glad that they happened. I’m sure his future partner will certainly be happy, haha.

I’m going to repost one of my favorite ones here, because it makes me so happy and maybe it will make you smile too. Smiling is good!



A few weeks ago, Chooch unearthed his very first Halloween costume in his closet, put it on and then surprised me with it. I almost died laughing, seeing his big head shoved through the small opening of a fabric ice cream. It pleased me because he was 6 months old that Halloween and it poured down rain so aside from a quick photo op at my grandma’s house, that costumes was totally wasted. I even considered putting it up on eBay a few times, or giving it to someone who has a baby, but now I’m really glad that I didn’t, because nothing is funnier than someone wearing something that they’re too big for.

One day, he wore it in the backseat of the car and waved to people at red lights.  He’s even considering wearing it for real next Halloween and I will fucking die if he does because I love this costume so much, so yes — PLEASE WEAR IT!

In the meantime, I wanted to do a little photo shoot with him wearing it. The weather was so amazingly warm this weekend, and I couldn’t stop picturing him eating an ice cream cone while wearing an ice cream cone. There’s an ice cream place right down the road from the abandoned building we use for some of our pictures, but we didn’t learn it was closed until we drove all the way out there (only like 30 minutes, but still — Henry’s frown is in full effect over things like this).  We figured McDonald’s was probably our best bet at that point, and remembered that there was one down the street from the closed-down ice cream shop we took pictures at last September.  Even better!

“But does McDonald’s have rainbow sprinkles? No, I don’t think they do. You’ll have to stop at a grocery store on the way and buy some, just in case,” I said, planning ahead.

Henry glared at me.

“What? There HAS to be rainbow sprinkles! I can’t do it without the sprinkles!” I cried. EVERYTHING IS IN THE DETAILS, OK?!

So that was another 25 minutes in the car with Henry who had almost completely shut down verbally by then. I even tried to calm him down by ironically holding his hand. He wasn’t amused.

Rainbow sprinkles procured and a vanilla cone in hand, we drove back to the Twist behind a partially disabled elderly man who cruised along at a pace of about 18 mph, melting the ice cream and our patience.

But we made it with the cone mostly intact! I jumped out of the car and poured the sprinkles on while Chooch stuffed himself in the costume cone.

I positioned him in front of the closed-down ice cream shop and handed him  the severely-dripping cone.

“Vanilla? REALLY? VANILLA? You knew I wanted CHOCOLATE!” he cried.

“Well, McDonald’s only has vanilla,” I muttered, but really — he was getting vanilla no matter where we went. It had to match his costume!

And the rest of it panned out smoothly! Henry and I didn’t even argue. We were only there about 5 minutes before I got what I needed and Henry got to finish Chooch’s cone.

This was right after 2 teenage girls walked by and giggled at Chooch. He was totally angry with me.

He even DANCED for me at the end. You know why? Because that little sucker got paid to do this. I have found that giving him a few bucks is a small price to pay for cooperation and amiability in front of the camera.

God, Henry is totally going to start asking for payment now too.


Jan 162021

Because there is nothing else to do but read books and daydream about the past, I was recently thinking about how we used to actually go and do really fun shit (for me) and then I would interview Henry about it later for my blog and he would rarely give any more than 2 word answers so I would have to use CREATIVE LICENSE and make up my own answers for him, and wow, those days were fun. Maybe I will try to think of a reason to interview him here soon (a conversation on Covid? DIY discourse) but until then, please enjoy the time we went to Warped Tour in 2016 and I tried desperately to get opinions out of him. (WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE MORE HENRY INTERVIEWS? You can read them all here!)



Much wow, this was Henry’s 8th Warped Tour (I think? I don’t feel like counting, but it’s less than my official tally that’s for sure because I’m more legit than he is). What this means is that he is basically a seasoned, grizzled pro at this point. Let’s ask him some questions about his long-term relationship with Warped Tour and if he plans on siring any illegitimate children out of wedlock with them, too. JUST LIKE HE DID WITH ME.

Do you plan on siring any illegitimate children out of wedlock with Warped Tour?

Say that again!? [WRITER REPEATS QUESTION.] I don’t know. Is that even possible?

There were several times when I went off on my own during the day. What did you and Chooch do that I missed?

We just walked around and got some Twix [they had a booth there] and Chooch spent some time in the water tent. We saw a little bit of Cold Rain but then he saw some vendor and then we ventured off. I don’t know, we just walked around and then he kept wanting a bucket hat. [There were some merch booths selling them because nothing screams POP PUNK like a bucket hat?]

Out of all the Warped Tours you’ve attended throughout the years, give us your top 3 worst moments.

Great, now I have to think. [He is seriously thinking about this too OMG. No wait, he’s watching something about the Kennedy assassination. No, he’s thinking again!]

#3. I don’t know what year it was, but having to listen to Katy Perry sing.

#2. Whatever year it was when it was 1000 degrees there and it was miserable. [I know what you’re thinking: Isn’t that every year?? But this one year it was actually so bad that someone died, I think, maybe.]

#1. Breakdown 2016. [You guys I think he’s referring to the 87 times I wanted to leave last week because I’m emotionally cracked.]


If you had a booth at Warped Tour, what would you be selling?


Huh. What would I sell….[Literally, he has no imagination.] I don’t know. Let me think about that one.

[TWENTY MINUTES LATER] Your art, and meat products, because there’s way too much vegetarian shit there.

[Um, if he’s referring to the ONE tent that Peta2 has there, then yeah: SO MUCH.]

Kevin Lyman, the founder of Warped Tour, asks you personally for a list of bands to forever blacklist. I guess he feels an affinity to you because you’re both middle-aged with probably have the same amount of callouses. Anyway, what bands are on your list? GO HOGWILD, BOO.


[Wow, this just in: Henry doesn’t care when disgusting, misogynistic bands like FALLING IN REVERSE and ATTILA play at Warped Tour, that’s why they didn’t make his list. Oh OK, privileged white male! Way to use your god-given Caucasian penis for good.]

It’s the morning after Warped Tour, i.e. DEAR DIARY TIME! What do you write on the back of the Faygo Red Pop label* about this year’s experience at Warped Tour?

I can’t have secrets and then tell you! [I won’t stop looking at him until he answers.]

When you look at me like that and start typing, it scares me. I don’t like your line of questioning. Too much thinking involved. Why can’t it just be yes or no answers. [Ew he just told me he doesn’t like my attitude?!]

*[That’s what I imagine Henry’s diary to be: a clump of Faygo bottle labels crumbled into a ball and punched under the mattress.]

OK fine, pretend like it’s a postcard that you’re sending Chris & Monica from the great bustling parking lot that is Warped Tour:

Is this a new question? Why would I write Chris and Monica a postcard?

[I’ll start it for you: DEAR CHRIS AND MONICA]

[I just asked Chooch the same question since Henry’s brain is creaking and smoking as he tries to think. Chooch would just write: ‘Sup.]

Dear Chris & Monica,

Having a great time, as always. [I think he’s sarcasming.]

Brought my A&D ointment which I have been applying liberally right around the TENDER AREAS inside my thighs. I wanted to wear booty shorts today but I had to wear regular-lengthed basic white man shorts on account of all the CHAFING. Thought we were going to leave early because Erin was being a psycho but then somehow we ended up staying later than ever before, wtf guys. I got to eat an ice pop and it reminded me of the days when I was a paperboy except that it cost approximately $8 more. Um, I bought my work-husband the Masked Intruder CD not because I’m thoughtful or anything but because he is my dom.

[OK fine, I might have taken some liberties after the “having a great time” line because I was tired of him sitting here saying, “Um…..uh…..”]

You seem less irritated about having to chaperone Chooch and me than you have in earlier years. Can you confirm this is because you’re sufficiently dead inside, or do you secretly LIKE WARPED TOUR now?

I think it’s a little bit of both. I like some of it and I’m pretty much dead inside because of you and Chooch.

But you hated Bled Fest – why?

I didn’t hate Bled Fest I just didn’t like it. I never said I hated Bled Fest! It was just too hot—and it wasn’t my type of music!

[Let me translate this for you, because I’m well-versed in reading between Henry’s blue-collared lines: Not enough booty shorts.]


Talk about how you’re able to sleep every year through super loud, heavy bands (the lucky bands this year were Secrets and Waterparks):

I don’t know it’s just something I can do.


If Warped Tour was around when you were a teenager, what bands would you have liked to see in the line-up that was probably printed in the PITTSBURGH PRESS along with the date that the tickets went on sale so you would know when to go to KAUFMANN’S at CENTURY III MALL to buy them. I’ll just go ahead and start you off with Ted Nugent:

  2. Iron Maiden
  3. Judas Priest
  4. Probably ZZ Top
  5. CCR
  6. The Guess Who


[ED.NOTE: Don’t post pictures of illustrated weeners on Facebook because you will be reported for it and it will be removed, even if it looks like a Simpsons’ weener.]

Speaking of weeners, last year, that ginger-fuckerbitch Jonny Craig got kicked off Warped Tour for flapping his weener at his merch girl. Would you rather have Jonny Craig’s weener flapped in your face at such a close proximity that it gets tangled up in your beard, or would you rather get caught flapping your own weener at Jeffree Star and have him paint it with his lipgloss line? You can be honest, I won’t tell anyone:

Really? You’re not going to tell anyone? Pfft. [He just mumbled “Boy, you’re having fun with this.”] Probably the latter because I don’t like Jonny Craig.

2016 highlight:

Bradley [from Emarosa] hugging Chooch [during their set. Don’t worry Henry, I’m here to beef up your answers].

ON THE REAL HENRY, like how giddy do you get when Bradley talks to us?

How WHAT? Giddy? I don’t. I don’t need to get giddy; I have you two that get giddy and quiet.

[Oh OH, Bradley is totally his #mce (Barb, that means Man Crush Everyday).]


In closing, what advice would you give another dad who is going to Warped Tour with his kids for the very first time? And don’t say “Drop them off”:

Well that was going to be my answer, drop them off. Since I can’t say that….um….bring lots of cash for merch and food. I don’t know what else….but I’m sure you do.



Jan 122021

The latest episode of Handmade By Henry saw him working diligently with fun fur because in my mind’s eye, I could not picture my Monster Squad poster framed any other way!

And by the way, The Monster Squad was one of my favorite movies when I was a kid. My friend Amy L., whose grandparents lived on my street, used to come over my house after school so that we could watch the shitty copy that my mom recorded for me on a blank VHS, probably from HBO, because we both had the hots for Rudy. I STILL HAVE THIS TAPE! It has Monster Squad scribbled on it in CRAYON on a ripped piece of MASKING TAPE. The very beginning of the movie was cut off by those goddamn black and white squiggly lines that were ubiquitous with VHS, and it wasn’t until years and years later as an adult that I finally got to see the movie in full, after I bought the DVD, lol.

Pin on Growing Up 80's & 90's

Phat Kids vs Classic Monsters | The Disbelief Suspenders Club

Yeah boi…

One of the movie theaters in Pittsburgh played this several years ago and I took Chooch. (Oh my Lord, that was seven years ago according to the date on that blog post!) Anyway, it was one of the best moments as a mom, to get to share this fucking amazing flick with my 7-year-old super impressionable kid.

Another fun fact about me and this movie: there’s a super beloved scene where one of the kids says, “whoa…wolfman’s got nards” and  that was actually a quote on my checks back when people used checks to pay for shit. When I started dating, he was like, “….really?” I had checks for another account to and those ones said “gave all the vampires back to god” which was a line from a Cold song, lol. I really liked having personalized checks OK?!?!

Honestly if you’ve never seen this movie, please do yourself a solid and rectify that immediately!


I also got this bitchin’ Pee Wee’s Big Adventure art piece from Billy Lilly on Instagram (his art is so pop-tastic and fun!). My kitchen was legit begging for this! This movie is also a huge part of my life and is one of the few movies that I quote from probably on a weekly basis if we’re being real with each other here (are we? I AM ALWAYS BEING REAL WITH YOU!).

In fact, I was training a new person at work last week and all I really knew about her was that she enjoys going to rodeos and I was trying to make small talk so I said, “The closest I’ve ever been to a rodeo is Pee Wee’s Big Adventure, haha” BUT SHE HAD NEVER SEEN IT SO THERE WAS JUST AN AWKWARD SILENCE.

I’m not really sorry for my gratuitous kitchen PDA because if you guys knew how shitty it used to be and how much I hated it, you would be in there doing precious floor-angels on that arcade rug, too. You really would.

That big empty area above the spice rack will one day be the spot of the pinball back glass. Henry finally ordered lights for it! But now we’re in the throes of Valentine season and drowning in orders from our card shops, so I guess all projects are on hold. :(

Out of everything, I think the neon sign is still my favorite. The kitchen would go down about 87 notches without it!

I actually make myself food now because I don’t hate being in there! I mean, the food I’m making isn’t anything beyond scrambled Egg Beaters and perhaps a can of soup or a microwaved sweet potato for dinner, but Henry is like WOW LOOK AT YOU GROWING UP!

I love that I can see Pee Wee from my desk while I’m working!

I’ll end this with a picture of this little sweetie, Penelope <3

(Impeachment tomorrow?)

Dec 232020

How you doing today, Lucy? You good, Mary? OK cool because I got a fun pandemic decorating tale for you today so if you wanna just go ahead and fluff your tuffet – go on, I’ll wait.

I think I mentioned in here recently that I really wanted to clean up the little hallway area upstairs (when I say little, I MEAN little – there’s just two bedrooms and a bathroom up there so the hallway is basically a rectangular block). There used to be this big, wavy metal shelf at the top which was fine when I lived alone but then HENRY moved in and started leaving random tools and other masculine sundry on the shelves, and then I accidentally put too many photo albums and journals on it and it always kind of looked like it was one hard gust of air away from toppling. Plus, Drew kept jumping on it and it was just a crisis waiting to happen.

Then I got the idea to make it the Cure corner, because with that Seoul subway sign’s impending arrival to the wall behind the couch, my Robert Smith self portrait was going to need a new home and it wasn’t going to be tucked away in the attic, believe me! This was one of my first eBay wins in 1999 and I paid too much for it to rot away under a pound of cobwebs.

So then it turned into, “Hey Henry, what if…” and this is the one thing I always say that makes him visibly clench, well, that and “I have an idea.” That one probably gives him angina though.

I think that Henry is really just in some weird Bob Vila groove now though because not only has he been tinkering away at my projects, but he’s also been fixing things on his own, too. Like things that I didn’t even realize were broken because I’m not an adult. He like, put in new plugs and stuff. In the walls. I don’t know, but he was doing stuff OK?!

All I did was tell him that I wanted to do this and he was like “OK” and took down the shelf and then asked what color the wall will be (at this point it’s more like “what shade of pink will this wall be?” and then he went to Lowe’s and got the paint and then, like, actually painted straight away and then when the first several panels of faux-plants arrived, HE HUNG THEM. Like, without me even having to nag! Has he finally realized that this is all it takes to keep the whine away?!

The first phase, it looked like this, and even then I was enamored! But I had a firm, clear vision of what I wanted the end result to look like, so we pressed on. First, I knew that I wouldn’t be happy with the picture hanging up there as it was. I should have reframed that thing years and years ago instead of leaving it in the plain metal frame it came in, but if ever there was a time…

We had recently bought a picture at Goodwill specifically for the frame because I planned to use it for a different project. It was too big for the Robert picture so we tried to find something comparable in a smaller size but we are still in the pandemic after all, and I’m extremely uneasy about being in stores, so after two tries, we quit. Then Henry was like, “You know, I could probably just cut down that frame you like and make it work” and I was like THIS IS WHY I STAY WITH YOU.

Literally, what can’t Henry do!? (Aside from completing my Seoul subway sign.)

FUCKKKKKKKK it is so beautiful, like something that would ACTUALLY be at the top of the stairway to Heaven.

The view from below.

Then FINALLY last night we had everything else that was needed: three neon lips and a strand of LED lights, and Henry got to work.


Haven’t decided which other of the myriad Cure memorabilia in my collection will go on the adjacent wall. I also have a small table that used to be downstairs, and I’m painting it cherry red with a pink top that has sequined lip patches adhered to it, so look forward to that, Mary.

I couldn’t have asked for anything more once Henry lit this bitch up, but then he went rogue and installed an LED bulb in the ceiling fixture. HE DID THIS OF HIS OWN ACCORD!!!!

So now the whole corner is awash in pink! I imagine him standing in an aisle in Lowe’s, looking at the bulbs and muttering, “she wants pink? Oh, I’ll give her pink.”

Like I said, I really think the man is broken.

I want to get some extra fake foliage from the craft store and make some drip off the bottom so it looks like less of a severe cut-off there.

The print has a portion of what would become the lyrics to A Letter To Elise, which would be released on the Wish album.

“Could you make it so that the Cure is constantly wafting out of a hidden speaker somewhere up here?”

“We’ll see,” Henry mumbled. So I guess we’ll see, Lucy!

(Sorry, I’ve been doing Paul Eugene workouts again and he’s always talking to some imaginary Mary and Lucy and now I’ve picked it up like a bad tick.)

Dec 162020

Yesterday Chooch came downstairs and said, “I have to write a memoir in my creative writing class” and before the words even had a chance to hit the air and cool down, I was bounding up from the couch and shouting, “DID SOMEONE SAY MEMOIR?! THAT’S MY SPECIALTY!”

Anyway, he actually decided that he’s going to write about one of our trips to Korea as his topic! You have no idea how much this pleases me because usually, he picks really stupid shit like “that one time I was playing Pokemon Go and got a [insert dumb name of a stupid thing].” Or the time he had to write about something that changed his life and I was like “KOREA?!” but instead he wrote about when he watched the episode of How I Met Your Mother where Lily hates the sound of people chewing and then he realized that he also hates that and it amplified it in his mind so now he actually hulks out any time Henry is closer than 2 blocks away while eating. Even if it’s just a marshmallow. (I can attest though that Henry has a way of taking the softest most unassuming foods and sexualizing them with his mouth, ugh ew ew ew especially bananas, I’m SHUDDERING RIGHT NOW.)

I was cruising my blog archives and found this Chooch-centric post about our last day of the first trip, where we did a bunch of shit he wanted to do, and I was inspired to repost it. When you have a blog, you can do things like that. I’m laughing to myself now, but it’s a laughter void of any mirth because I just a memory of the time this dumb bitch started an e-feud with me on Twitter and was like, “AND ALL YOU DO IS WRITE ABOUT YOURSELF!!!”


“Personal blog.”


 GOLDEN PIZZA AND NORAEBANGS: See also: Chooch’s Last Day in Seoul 2018

Can you tell that I’ve been supremely dragging my feet with these posts? I know it’s annoying to everyone else that I have approx. 87 posts about a 10-day trip and that we’ve been home for over two months and I still haven’t closed the book on it, but you have to remember that I’m the girl who can stretch Warped Tour into 6 blog posts plus a gratuitous Henry Interview Extravaganza.

And I’m not even sponsored!

So on that note, here is what we did for the rest of our final full day in Seoul, holy shit I didn’t expect to start crying as I typed that, yet here we are.

For the last night, we finally gave in to Chooch’s desire for SUPER KOREAN FUN TIMES, which involved pizza (specifically, “gold” pizza, more on that in a bit) and noraebang, which is Korean karaoke (literally translates to ‘song room’). Let’s be real, you can’t go to South Korea and not partake in some noraebang because it is a super popular pastime of native Koreans. There are noraebangs everywhere, on nearly every street, in alleys, in every neighborhood and district.

But first, he had to suffer through last minute souvenir shopping in Insadong, haha. What every 12-year-old boy wants!

This was when Henry abandoned us in Insadong because he wanted to exchange more money and Chooch somehow inherited two balloons from some people promoting the Alive Museum and then some older Korean man came over and tried to pretend-steal one from Chooch and even with a language barrier, we all managed to have a great big international laugh and these are the heart-warming things that happens when Henry abandons us.

The plan after Insadong was to walk back to the hotel, where Henry would meet us later with pizza procured from a place that Chooch had zeroed in on the day before when we were walking to the palaces. We figured we’d just eat in our room and then set off to Myeongdong for noraebang.

But then Henry came back and was like, “DON’T GET TOO EXCITED” because the pizza was just REGULAR, not GOLD. Apparently, the menu that Chooch saw was for a pizza place that was there previously and now this new one had a different menu which was all in Hangeul and hey you guys, I spent many months leading up to this trip trying to get Henry to learn how to at least read it and he was all, “I DON’T NEED NO HANGEUL.”

Yeah, until you do!

Anyway, Henry felt obligated to buy a pizza from this joint because he had already frustrated the guy working there enough I guess, and it was great pizza, you guys! It really was. But it was extremely similar to American pizza and it was not want we wanted. We wanted that Korean flair.

So we decided to venture on out to the Cheonggyecheon Stream where we saw a place called Mr. Pizza on our second night in Seoul.

But first! We got no further than across the street from the hotel before I realized I left my subway card in the room so Henry obediently went back inside to get it. For some reason, like we need a reason, Chooch and I were nearly peeing our pants in anticipation of seeing our hotel room light turn on, I don’t know why this was such a crucial comedic moment for us, but then it never happened because Henry was all, “I didn’t need to turn it on.” Whatever. At least Chooch nabbed this frameable picture of Henry on his way back to us:

I can only imagine what Chooch and I looked like to passers by, as our raucous laughter caused us to fall into each other like drunks.

This reminds me that I never talked about (lol, like this is a talk show) how we accidentally got lost from Henry the night before on our way to Hongdae. We were walking to one of the Jongno subway stations when Chooch and I stopped to look at jewelry in a store window. I thought dumb Henry knew we stopped but he kept walking and by the time we looked up from the window, WE WERE ABANDONED.

This was like the theme of Korea now that I think about it.

Anyway, we were mildly panicked because there were two subway stations near us and weren’t sure which one he was going to, so we chose the closest one and waited.

And waited.

And waited.

And eventually, this happened:

He didn’t realize we weren’t with him anymore until he turned around to hand us our subway cards.

“You couldn’t tell that you didn’t hear us laughing anymore?” I asked.

“No, because I block that out,” Henry mumbled.

Random alley picture because I don’t even want to forget those narrow Korean alleys that pop off once the sun sets.

When we got to Cheongyecheon, we were excited to see that another night market was going on! It was so tempting to just pig out on all the food vendors there, but we had a fucking pizza to scratch off the Korea bucket list, goddammit. To Mr. Pizza!

Gold pizza level achieved!

So, one notorious thing about Korean pizza is that “gold crust” means that it’s made with sweet potato — I fucking love sweet potato but nothing is better than Korean sweet potato, my friends. It’s like candy. Also, corn! Somehow, corn is as synonymous with pizza in Korea as pepperoni is here.

I just asked Chooch what his Mr. Pizza review is and his eyes got all bugged out. “Yum,” he said, with a very ‘duh’ inflection.

But yeah, so worth it and I’m glad we didn’t settle on the other normal pizza!

I just also asked Henry if he liked Mr. Pizza and he said, “Yeah!” with an actual modicum of enthusiasm because he’s trying to keep me from leaving him so he’s suddenly Boyfriend of the Year.

Also, I was excited because I got to push the button on the table to get the waitress to come and bring us a box! I always wanted to push the button!!!

Afterward, we took  the subway to Myeongdong. I chose Myeongdong for our final night because that area rules and we hadn’t experienced it at night before then.

“Are you sure there are noraebangs here?” Henry asked, and I was like, “Uh yeah, le duh” because where aren’t there noraebangs, is the real question. Funny though how as soon as you’re looking for one, they’re suddenly gone, like those little trolls from Labyrinth were flipping over the signs before we walked past. Also, I did notice that most of these places don’t have any English on the signs, so unless it’s a really big, touristy noraebang with big windows in the front to let you see in, you might walk past 59 of them without ever knowing. So if you’re planning to go to Korea and want to sing your face blue in one of these joints, look for this word: 노래방

We eventually found one (not like we were bored looking for one though; Myeongdong is so freaking vibrant and upbeat at night, even on a Sunday!) called Sing Sing. When we walked in, Henry was like, “OH” because it reeked like a dive bar and was pretty dark and creepy, but I loved the atmosphere! It felt more authentic than the shiny, bright ones in Gangnam and Hongdae. This one felt like a place where locals would hang out, and we were definitely not the only ones there.

Henry paid the nice boy approximately 20,000 won for an hour and he lead us into our own private room, gave us a brief tutorial on how to work the remote, and then let us have our privacy to hold faux Produce 101 auditions.

Chooch’s first song was a goddamn Maroon 5 song and we were like, “Oh.” Then he sang something else that was dumb too, while I flipped through the book to find him something cool to sing.

Guys, the rooms even come with tambourines.

I had no intentions of doing any singing because I’m just not into that. And that’s when I saw it.

“Even the Night’s Are Better” by Air Supply.

Air Supply, you guys.

“Henry, you’re singing this with me,” I ordered, tossing him a mic and punching in the number.

“Wha—?” he stuttered, and then the song started and he was like, “Are you kidding.”

I immediately launched into my famous brand of shriek-singing on top of a bed of throaty giggles, while Henry mumbled along, and Chooch stared at me with the most appalled and disgusted look on his face.

“WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT!?” he cried when the song ended.

“God, I forgot how great I sing!” I said, and Henry was just like, “No.” I think it brought back his PTSD from all the Saturday nights we spent at McCoy’s on karaoke night. I think my crowning moment was the time I sang “Old McDonald Had a Farm” and called for audience participation. The weathered broad who ran karaoke there, DJ Danger (lol), haaaaated me with such a passion and actually got to the point where she would make executive decisions and veto my song choices.


Anyway, back to noraebang, we also sang SHATTERED DREAMS and Chooch was like WHAT IS HAPPENING AM I HALLUCINATING, OR….

“Ugh, I wish they had Skater Boi!” Chooch groaned, flipping through the book 7800 times. I knew they had it because I saw it but I lied and said they totally 100% did not have that song or any other Avril Lavigne songs because she has a lawsuit out against noraebangs, but then I felt bad and said FINE HERE IT IS, SING YOUR DUMB HEART OUT.

But the grand finale was Chooch and me dueting with….



Our theme!

Oh good lord, we were so sweaty by the time our hour was up, and our stomachs hurt from laughing so hard, and my throat hurt from going ham on Air Supply, and it was just the perfect way to end our time in Korea. I especially loved how we could hear people singing in other rooms every time we paused to find our next song.

It was so good! Don’t skip out on noraebang if you’re in Korea! DON’T!!

Here I am in the noraebang bathroom!

Here’s Chooch under the noraebang sign!


We capped off the night with ice cream from Milky Bee.

My hand looks so weird here. Henry’s pose, tho.

On our walk back to the hotel from the Jongno subway station, we stopped at a snack shop and I stocked up on some Korean candies for my International Candy Pumpkin at work and had to snap this picture because I’ve had some these corn sticks in there before and at first my work friends were skeptical but then grew to love them.

OK, maybe “love” is a stretch, but they ate them. There were so many different varieties in Korea! Back at the hotel. Chooch and I collapsed and Henry did all the packing while muttering things like, “Just lay there, assholes. Sure, I’ll do everything. Don’t help me.”

I don’t even know how to end this. This was so much more than just a vacation, though. It was a dream come true and a really amazing thing to experience with my little family unit. But, all good things, am I right? We’re hoping to go back again next summer, because there are other cities we want to explore in addition to Seoul and Busan, and plus there was so much in Seoul alone that we weren’t able to get to.

So, if you read all of these or followed along with us on Instagram, thank you! You’re the real MVP!

“OMG I don’t want to hit ‘publish’ on this because once I do, it’s done. It’s over. It’s really over,” I just wailed to Henry. “UNLESS YOU WRITE YOUR OWN RECAP!!!!”

And do you know what he said?

“We’ll see.”


Dec 032020

In today’s edition of “less pandemic panic, more memories that are manic” (???? Sorry, sometimes I’m a rhyming try-hard) you’ll find me reminiscing about all the carousel selfie funtimes I had in 2019. I like to trick the encroaching depression by focusing on shit that makes me happy and you know, maybe it’s just a Band-aid in the grand scheme of things but for now, it’s getting the job done.

The best part was that I had to go through so many amusement park blog posts to collect these photos and it made me so happy doing a little skimming here and there. 2019 was so tight. This current year is definitely making me appreciate it all the more, in hindsight!

The first amusement park we visited in 2019 was King’s Island that April, but I guess it didn’t occur to any of us to go on the carousel (do they even have one? Now I can’t picture it in my mind), but Chooch and I hit up some horsies a month later when we went to Waldameer.

Then in June, Chooch and I went to Conneaut with Janna and this is the picture that actually kick-started the tradition of CAROUSELFIES. Seriously, this picture makes me so happy, it was such a stomach-achingly hilarious day, and I should probably just put this damn thing in a locket, to be QUITE FRANK.

This technically counts as a carouselfie: at some ice cream joint in the beginning of summer. This is when Henry hijacked our tradition because wah wah wah he always have to be included even though he’s so lame and I just want to bully him right off the school bus but then he’ll go tattle to the internet and everyone on the internet always takes his side!!

Ugh, being inclusive is so hard sometimes.

The next amusement park we went to was Lotte World in Korea but it was ridiculously crowded and the wait for the carousel was like 2 hours. So the NEXT carousel we rode was in Tokyo Disney Sea! Henry actually took this without bitching!

In August, we went to Kentucky Kingdom and Holiday World in Indiana during a long weekend. Here are those carousels! You can see that Henry is really starting to get a feel for a plaster horse between his legs.

…OK never mind, he’s back to grimacing.

Then we went to Cedar Point in September! That was truly a weekend of ups and downs but our time on the derby ride thingie was pleasant (I forgot how fast it goes though)!

In October, we went to King’s Dominion in Virginia for the first time and had so much fun! SO MUCH FUN that I have literally no recollection of riding the carousel there. Side note: there was recently some thing on Twitter where people were sharing pictures of celebrities they’ve been told that they look like so I was like “cool I’ll play too” even though I never think I look like anyone I’m told (especially not Maggie Gyllenhaal but I used to get that one the most). I used to get Claire Danes a lot too, especially when I was younger and I never saw that one either but I just glanced at myself in this King’s Dominion pic and I kind of actually see it in this one!

Also, wtf are all those people looking at? I’m having major FOMO right now.

The first weekend of November (ie the last of the Halloween festivities at amusement parks) we went to Lake Compounce in Connecticut and Dorney Park in Allentown, PA and it was a legit wonderful weekend (don’t worry – we still bickered a lot, we’re the Appledales, after all).

It was super cold at Lake Compounce, but mild at Dorney. Just in case any weather groupies are wondering.

People kept telling me that they liked my jacket all weekend and Chooch was like “No, it’s ugly. I hate it.”

And then our very last carouselfie happened one year ago this month, at Silver Dollar City in Branson, Missouri. THAT WAS A FUN TRIP TOO BUT IT WAS FUCKING COLD, MAN.

Honorable mention: Chooch and I also went to Kennywood in August but for some reason we didn’t ride the carousel (we were too busy fucking with the coasters) but I did manage to take a moody pic of it because we left that night.

I wonder how much it would cost to get one of those little coin-operated carousels for the house….I could get rid of the dining room table and put it there. We could call it the diningsel. Dinner-Go-Round. Merry-Go-Lunch. Give me a break man, my brain is atrophied.

OK back to reality, a/k/a COVID-times. Have a nice night. If you dream about carousels after looking at these pictures before bed, you have to tell me!

Nov 302020

Even though it’s just the three of us here in our cozy covid pod, I didn’t want to just say ‘fuck it’ and like, order pizza or something, which is definitely something we have done on other holidays since we don’t really have anything else to do, family to visit, etc. So I suggested that we make a little spread of international delights, akin to what I had planned for 4th of July before we decided to tear up the kitchen instead.

(“Yeah but can’t we still do it anyway?” I asked Henry and he was like WHERE WOULD YOU LIKE ME TO COOK?? Oh…yeah. Lol.)

Here is the menu I painstakingly constructed only to have Henry prove at 11pm on Thanksgiving Eve that he only barely read it by answering, “Um…..” 4 out of 5 times to my questions of, “Did you get the ingredients for this?” He’s such a holidayfucker, I swear to god. Spoiler: IT TURNED OUT FINE! He was able to get the rest of what he needed at the Mexican grocery store down the street the next day.

  • fufu and peanut soup (West African)
  • Mamaliga (Romania)
  • baked apple sauce (Dutch)
  • Smolensk porridge (Russia)
  • Street corn salad (Mexico)
  • Sweet potato rolls (Portugal)
  • Mashed potatoes (good ol’ Merica, made by Chooch)
  • Vegan ham
  • Bibingka (Philippines)
  • Cherry pie (another American contribution by vanilla Chooch)

Pre-dinner, Chooch off-handedly mentioned that he wanted to try peppermint Schnappes after seeing Lily guzzle it on Dash + Lily so I was like OH WHAT THE HELL IT’S A HOLIDAY and let him have a sip.

Chooch’s cherry pie was the first thing that was done that day and proceeded to tempt us with its cloying aroma

I made bibingka all by myself! I lied! It was a box mix and Chooch had to help me because the directions were totally confusing. I was crying. But hot damn, this coconut milk cake was delicious. I learned about it from the book The Farm, which I did not like but at least it taught me about some delicious Filipino foods.

My apple sauce required the addition of speculaaskruiden which is a speculoos-y spice, I guess. Of course it was impossible to find but then I found a recipe with how to make it and it seemed easy until I sent it to Henry and he was like CARDAMOM PODS ARE $10, GRRRRR but he bought them and spent Wednesday night roasting, shelling, and grinding them lolololol. The next day, I was like, “WHEN DO I GET TO DO SOMETHING” and he was all, “Here, make your damn apple shit” and swept his arm toward a pile of apples and I was like, “OK, so do I just shove them in the oven?”

“No. You have to peel and cut them first.”

OH HAHAHA HELL NO. I was looking for something a bit less laborious, buddy. So he sent me away and then let me come back hours later after they had been baked and were ready for some mashing. I am good at mashing.

I did hurt my wrist though.

FAKE HAM. This was just from the store. Probably Whole Foods.

MY RUSSIAN PORRIDGE SHIT! It was really weird – fresh cranberry sauce (I MADE IT…wait, did I? No, I was supposed to I think but then Henry ended up doing it because I lost interest) poured over rice. This was our….amuse bouche? Maybe. Chooch HATED IT. I thought it was quite interesting and also good (a lot of people might think interesting means bad but NOT IN THIS CASE) and Henry was immediately coming up with ways to make it better, OK Boris.

Nope, not a fan.

Then we had our fufu course and you guys, I cannot stress enough HOW.GOOD.FUFU.IS. This is another food I learned about from a book and Henry first made it last spring at my request. The fufu is that yellow hunk floating in the soup, and it’s made from plantain and yucca (actually, there are variations of this depending on what region you’re looking at). Literally just those two things and water. It turns into a sticky dough that you then use an edible utensil for soup-spooning.

It is so insanely good with peanut soup. Holy shit, I think I want this to be our new Thanksgiving dinner tradition.

Romanian mamaliga is essentially polenta (Henry was like, “That’s exactly what it is, so…”) topped with a dollop of sour cream, and as a fan of polenta in general, I was not mad at all about this addition to our holiday menu.

This was another thing that Chooch DID NOT LIKE.

Our first time using the buffet!!

OH SHOOOOOT, these sweet potato rolls were bangin’. They were so dense and rich! I toasted one the next morning for breakfast and it was like a fucking gourmet English muffin. Henry added the recipe to his KEEPER pile.

Would I have liked to have invited my mom and Henry’s mom over for dinner? Absolutely. But it’s not worth risking their health (or worse: lives) just because we wanted it to feel “more like a holiday.” Maybe next year things will be safer and we can go all out, but for this year I was…thankful (ugh) to just share a nice dinner with these two goofs.

This is Chooch’s “I CAN HEAR YOU CHEWING” face.

Oh shit, and don’t forget the Korea representation!! Soju in the house! Wish we had makgeolli too but we would have had to travel to obtain that milky nectar of the motherland.

We had some vegan Sugar Spell pints too and that purple sweet potato casserole is a contender for my favorite flavor of theirs.

A little bit of e’er’thang.

My poor stomach felt like Stretch Armstrong after that smorgasbord.

To cap off the night, Chooch and I did the dishes and then indulged in our annual T-giving tradition of mocking birthday party videos on YouTube. I think we all got along all day, too?? COULD THIS BE TRUE?!!

Nov 262020

It’s 9:00PM already on Thanksgiving (2020 is on goddamn warped speed) and I am so tired and content. This was quite possibly the nicest T-giving my little fam-trio has had, because the pandemic brought with it LOW EXPECTATIONS. I will pop back on here sometime this weekend to give a proper recap but I wanted to use this day to say thanks to those of you guys who read this, whether we know each other in real life, became friends via the Internet, or maybe you’re a friendly stranger who occasionally reads but doesn’t comment: I’m thankful for you guys! I enjoy writing about the daily minutiae of my life and that anyone cares to read it really means so much to me. I don’t say thanks enough!

I also wanted to take some dumb family pictures to immortalize this Thanksgiving, which was blessedly sans arguing (mostly) and we all pitched in (mostly) and everything turned out wonderfully (100%)!

Henry and Chooch changed clothes IMMEDIATELY after this, so in the next post you’ll see them chowing down on Thanksgiving fare in their super-casual attire.

If Henry looks exhausted/harried, it’s because he was in the middle of cooking and I made him throw on a flannel and sit for an entire 5 minutes while we pretended to be at Olan Mills.

Anyway, I hope my fellow Americans found a way to maintain some traditions while not breaking any pandemic laws. Trust me, I’m not thrilled about how things are playing out either because our new-ish tradition has been to spend a quiet Thanksgiving at home and then go to an amusement for the weekend, and you better believe I was super bummed when summer came and went and an end to covid was still not in sight. I pretty much made peace with the fact months ago that we’d just be staying put for Thanksgiving weekend, and it’s ok. Life goes on (it might not though if you don’t follow covid safety measures!!).

And now I’m going to go and roll myself out of these jeans and into sweatpants, and maybe scroll through Instagram to check out all the pies my friends made. That’s my favorite part of Thanksgiving! ALL OF THE PIE. Speaking of, Chooch made a delightful one and I will talk about that in my Thanksgiving recap.