Barrelassin’ Momma got a big surprise this Christmas. She has been talking about Hawaii for as long as I can remember- essentially, my whole life, and this year that’s exactly what she’ll get!
We first tried to surprise her with a beautiful calendar that included all sorts of photos from some of her previous and most recent vacations. The surprise was- we added a new vacation on the very last page- Hawaii! Since we haven’t gone yet, we photo-shopped a picture of the ones going on the trip and added all of our faces to Hula dancers. Of course nothing ever goes off without a hitch around here so naturally, not only did the photo not get finished in time to add to the calendar but, the calendar didn’t get delivered on time. In fact, it didn’t actually arrive until the day after Christmas. But, like the true Barrelassers that we are- we improvised.

Photo-shopped picture that never made the cut 🙂

We decided to just pull up the calendar online from our saved projects page and let her know this was her gift that didn’t make it on time. The idea was for her to read the calendar and of course, be very surprised when she got to December. No surprise here that it was raining and our satellite internet wasn’t cooperating at all. We were able to make it slowly load on a cell phone which then made the writing almost impossible for her to read. Smh. We were finally able to capture some of the calendar reading and surprise on video- which you can see on our Youtube channel link and right here on the blog link as well.

 And what else would Barrelassin’ Momma’s first thought be when she realizes she’s going to Hawaii to celebrate her 74th birthday in June but ‘did we rob a bank?’ Of course we didn’t rob a bank. We booked the trip- paid all of the deposits- and then for an even bigger surprise we told her she has to pay for her own portion. Shake my darn head again. Essentially- we knew she was willing to do that- but she wanted her family with her. So her real present is that we’re willing to spend the money so that we can join her on her next big Barrelassin’ adventure!

How do people such as us manage to go to Hawaii? We pay deposits and set up a payment plan with Alaska Airlines and we now have five months to pay it in full. Yes- it was like vacation layaway!

Enjoy, Barrelassers 😉


We had a very Barrelassin’ Christmas at my house. Food, fun, and family! Barrelassin’ Momma received some special gifts that made her cry a little, but they were tears of joy. The kiddos were happy with their gifts and my mom, sister and husband all knocked it out of the park with all the great books I received! Do I go from extreme to another or what? I asked for and received Caroline Manzo’s book, Let Me Tell You Something and Nikki Sixx’s, The Heroin Diaries. And several more in between. They did, however, have to hook me up with a gift card for NeNe Leakes’ book, Never Make the Same Mistake Twice, because they couldn’t get their hands on a copy. I’ll fix that! 

So anyway, don’t you just love the shirt I’m wearing in this picture? Me too. Looks great on me huh? Now picture it a little later in the evening wrapped around my face with one arm stuck, half way over my head. Why you ask? Because that’s what I looked like wearing it while sitting at my dining table surfing the internet and trying to make one of those smooth, quick moves that every woman has undoubtedly mastered within a year of her first time wearing a bra, to attempt to get my bra off without coming out of my shirt. It’s an art. It’s like our very own magic trick, and is typically an easy one. Not so much with this shirt. I know it wasn’t the bra’s fault- I’ve taken that same bra off numerous times the same way. The bra is a team player. The shirt is new, and hasn’t quite learned the rules of living with me yet.
I’ve retraced all of my steps, and I did everything right. The shirt was definitely not cooperating. By the time it was over with, I actually felt somewhat violated. I had one arm in and one arm half out. The half arm out was stuck in an uncomfortable, not to mention unsightly position just above my head and hanging over the opposite side of my body. My hair was stuck to my face and I couldn’t see a thing! I was running out of breath during the fight and my air supply was already limited at best. I even had my own hair in my mouth. 
I hadn’t yet removed my false eyelashes , so when I did try to open my eyes, my lashes would rub the fabric of the shirt and try to bend backwards and stab me in the eye. I was very frustrated by the time I managed to save myself, and I’m still not quite sure how I did it. I tried to give up at one point and start over, but I never could get back to my original state. Somehow I managed to wrestle my way out just in time to actually see one of my own boobies hanging out over the top of my undershirt. It’s a miracle nobody in my house witnessed this catastrophe, but to be honest, had anyone, even a stranger shown up, I would’ve begged them to please put an end to my misery. All the spinning in circles had made me a little dizzy and I had to get my bearings. I was exhausted!
One thing was very clear to me when I escaped…the Ultra Lite was not going to cut it; I was now going to need a stiff drink!
Enjoy, Barrelassers 🙂


This was the topic of conversation last night while I was attempting Christmas Tree duty. And I must say that it’s long overdue; I typically have the tree up and half of the Universe decorated by now. Getting back to the point, My children are fifteen and older and definitely do not believe in a real Santa Claus anymore. In other words, they know I am not actually Santa, but I do his job every year. Santa is one of the few fictional characters that exists and has the whole world working for him. 
So my Barrelassin’ son was venting about whose great idea it was to leave cookies for Santa at night and then get to eat them when the children went to bed. This was definitely someone who was caught with their hand in the cookie jar by an unexpected visitor; the child they assumed was sleeping. 
I must say, we had a barrel of laughs. They even wondered why nobody ever talked about Santa and Diabetes. I was trying to put ribbon on the tree as my husband was explaining how he felt betrayed by his parents when he found out Santa wasn’t real. Not so much because Santa wasn’t real, but mostly because he had been lied to for so long. My guess is that he couldn’t believe they had pulled one over on him ;).  I could not stop laughing. This lead to me explaining my feelings the very moment I found out Santa didn’t exist. Or I guess I should say, the moment I confirmed it. I’m sure I believed in Santa one-hundred percent at some point, but as far back as I can recall the topic, I always had my suspicions. 
I always had some doubt that there was actually a jolly man traveling the entire world in one night delivering gifts to everyone. Don’t get me wrong, I wanted to believe so badly. I literally remember hoping so bad that Santa was real, but I was not convinced; the evidence was really stacked against Santa. For instance, why on Earth would Santa hide my presents in my mom’s closet, only to return and wrap them, pack them up all over again, and deliver them through the chimney that we didn’t even have? That seems like a lot of work, and even I could see what a mismanagement of time that was. And nobody who tried to convince me could ever seem to look me in the eye and answer my Santa questions. I was like a prosecutor I imagine. Like when me and my mom were walking down a sidewalk one night and she tried to get me to watch for Santa’s sleigh in the sky. I really think she was just trying to get me to shut up by giving me something to focus on. And I suspected that then, but she had also just explained to me that there was no thirteen o’clock, so I couldn’t be sure yet. I was not in school yet, and I can’t say what age I was when I was given a solid answer on the matter, but I know it was before the age of nine, because by that time, I wanted a stereo for Christmas, and me and Barrelassin’ cousin waited patiently to the end of the gift opening session to for those stereos. We didn’t really care about no fake Santa, we wanted to rock n’ roll! 
My confirmation of Santa being a fictional character was probably much different than many others. I recall my very first feeling being a little hopeful. I was like, if Santa isn’t real, and the Easter Bunny isn’t real (I don’t ever remember actually falling for that crap. I played along, but I can’t actually remember ever buying that load of eggs) then…maybe the booger man and the Devil/Satan wasn’t real either!! Oh this was going to be great! Finally, I could tell a lie or act out without that fear in the back of my mind of going to Hell!
I asked my mother if he was, indeed, fictional as well, and she explained to me that one was real and there was no way around it. Are you kidding me?? What kind of world were we living in? A world where all the nice, fun people were made up stories, but the bad guy, the most terrifying guy, was the real one? This was not good. You see, I don’t remember being upset at all that Santa didn’t exist, besides, now I could tell my mother what I wanted for Christmas with confidence and not have to worry that my list was being left in the hands of a busy stranger in a red suit, that may have other children’s best interest in mind over mine.
 My entire memory about it is being more disturbed that Satan really did exist and the fact that I had had a hunch all along about Santa, but now I could say “I knew it! I told you so! I was right all along! I was right. Do you hear me world? I was right!!”  And that was the important thing.
Enjoy, Barrelassers 🙂


Myth: saying “uncle” will make it stop. I’ve been saying “uncle” for the better part of the week and I haven’t noticed any major changes. In fact, things got worse before they got better, then worse again.

A little over a week ago, my horoscope advised me to not make any financial decisions on that particular day…I just couldn’t listen. Immediately after reading it, I thought about the fact that I was about to deliberately disobey the Universe by sitting down with a package of Senior photo proofs and a calculator to begin the daunting game of ‘How many people want a picture of my son, the Senior?’ Here’s a cheat-sheet for anyone about to play that same game:

                                                            ^      ^
                                          Grandparents      Grandparents
                                             one photo           one photo
                                                   ^                       ^
                               Can show to everyone      Can show to everyone
                               One large photo of each proof to display all over the walls

                                                None-doesn’t even like pictures
                                                You really only need three photos
                                                Grand Total: Your life savings

There, now save yourself the trouble of all the counting and thinking. And whatever you do, do not think with the tip of the pen in your mouth and end up like me. In my case the photos are also costing the price of one porcelain crown. Yes, chewing on the tip of a pen broke the tip of my tooth. Or should I say the other side of my tooth?

Technically, if we go back about four years- two days before my wedding I had a dentist appointment that I kept. Everyone wants to have pretty, white teeth on their wedding day. The day before my wedding I spent a wonderful day with all the girls in my bridal party and my mother, getting our nails done together. It was so relaxing. When we were finished I rode with one of my Barrelassin’ friends and picked up the rest of the flowers for the wedding. Everything was perfect, until that moment where I bit into my very first french-fry out of the box and accidentally bit my new thumbnail that I wasn’t accustomed to having, and chipped a small piece of my tooth and spit it into my hand. I almost couldn’t not laugh at the irony that I had just been to the dentist the day before and now here I was with a broken tooth. It was the weekend and there was nothing I could do about it but laugh…oh wait, then it hit me, while getting our nails done, I had forgotten to pick up one last tux that had to be re-altered and now the place was closed and wouldn’t be open the next day. Now I cried. I couldn’t stop crying, but then the business remembered and re-opened their store and called me to come and get it, blah, blah, blah.

 Anyway, I had a chip on my tooth, which is very different from having a chip on your shoulder. You can fix the chip on your shoulder yourself for free. Since I hate having dental work done, I left the small chip on my tooth and have been living happily ever after until this week, which takes me all the way back to the beginning of this story where I started in the first place.

Now I have a chip on each side of that same tooth and my teenage children are calling me “Shark-tooth.” I am not offended. We laugh and laugh, but it still looks ridiculous. I’ve been running around crazy this week cooking Thanksgiving dinner, going to doctor’s appointments, scheduling my daughter’s Tonsillectomy, along with a few other highs and lows, and then I woke up this  morning- which was a miracle in and of itself given the week I’ve been having and began to work on a computer project that nearly brought me to tears. Oh, who am I kidding, it actually did bring me to tears.

I decided I would be a strong woman (I was watching Bethenny Frankel’s talk show, so I was very determined) and headed to the kitchen to refresh my drink and grab a snack. Did I mention that I walked into a flooded kitchen? Well I did. The washer was leaking again. My husband just fixed it recently and it has been working great, until today when it went for a swim.

While using the shop-vac to suck up the lake, I had plenty of time to think about the fact that I now needed a tooth, Senior pictures, a washing machine, a yearbook and to make the final payments on all of the other necessary paper products required to graduate…all three weeks before Christmas and I’ve only crossed off one gift on the list.

Now I have a chip on my shoulder.

Bah Humbug!

Enjoy, Barrelassers 🙂





Did you attend a Black Friday sales event and live to tell about it? Did you get all the cookware you needed? And if so, how many people did you have dropkick for it? I have to wonder on a day like today, a.k.a. the morning after- how many waffle irons were ripped from the hands of perfect strangers in an effort for someone to be named the Waffle King at home. Did someone you know want a waffle iron so badly that you actually planned it all out, and were you one-hundred percent devoted to kicking the ass of an elderly woman to make sure she didn’t steal it right out from under you?

I didn’t attempt Black Friday this year; not because I don’t love a good shoving match, because I do, but because we actually had a second Thanksgiving dinner to eat and that family time was more important to me that the flat screen TV deals being advertised.

Two years ago on Thanksgiving, my family was driving back from Georgia to Tennessee after filling our bellies with all the turkey you could wish for, when my husband and I decided we wouldn’t have enough time to get back home and get back out to the sales. We then chose to stop off in a random town with a Walmart and kick it into high gear. The kids were not fools, but they tried to play along for a brief moment when I told them that I had agreed to make the purchases for my Barrelassin’ best friend so that her kids wouldn’t know what they were getting for Christmas. I told them that in exchange she had agreed to go make my purchases as well. This was probably one of my dumber plots or schemes while Christmas shopping, but it was literally the only scenario I could come up with.

They thought I was real funny until about three hours into the whole plan and two of them were sleeping in the car in a Walmart parking lot and the youngest of the three was standing in line with a ticket waiting for her own Christmas Wii to be available for purchase- while I sat on a box containing a microwave or something, I’m not sure what it was; we weren’t buying it, just using it as a seat.

Meanwhile I had to keep checking in on my husband who was making fast friends with all the other shoppers he was waiting with for flat screen TV’s. Our biggest dilemma was how to get the Wii, two TV’s and still make it over to the stacks of discounted bath towels before they were gone.  I can go ahead and tell you that by the time my daughter and I maneuvered our way through the stampede of people, those bath towels were a thing of the past. We settled for some sort of electric, scented candles that someone told us were normally double the price and a picture frame. Total score!

In the end, I’m thankful for all of the family time I’ve been blessed with over the past two days and I didn’t even have to beat anyone’s ass or fight for any of it. I would say that’s a win,win.

Now I may have a black and blue December trying to get my hands on whatever Christmas presents I can between now and Christmas- but by hell I had two days of turkey and family to be thankful for.

Enjoy, Barrelassers 🙂


Have yourself a merry little Halloween…now. No, really- I mean it, NOW, because Christmas is waiting and it’s not being patient.

I’m hearing about and seeing a lot of Halloween and Christmas decorations everywhere at the same time. I’ve seen some complaints about it. Where do I stand on this topic? Hmm- well, I don’t really care all that much. Halloween is really just a gateway drug to a Turkey and a Ham for me. I can buy candy all year long, so I’m really not worried that it’s going anywhere. More and more the average person looks like they’re dressed for Halloween on a daily basis, and pairing that with the fact that I’m too scared to go around scared all month, takes the actual “problem” off the table for me. It is, however, the only day acceptable to go door to door and expect complete strangers to give you candy, but I’ve covered all that in an earlier post and I personally, haven’t tricked the hell out of anyone in a long time , so maybe I’ll switch it up a little this year. BEWARE!!! There- that’s my Halloween spooky voice to kick things off.

In all seriousness, I love Christmas decorations so I wouldn’t be at all opposed to the stores selling them all year long. And I’m not talking about those Christmas only stores where a glass ball with a hook costs more than the tree I plan to hang it from. Perhaps Walmart could have a Christmas section for the entire year. I do agree that it looks quite odd and ridiculous to have an inflatable Santa in one yard with a giant pumpkin in the yard next door. It’s not the store’s fault. Probably as a courtesy, they begin the sale of Christmas items so the consumer can get a head start on the most expensive holiday. I would guess they didn’t take into consideration the dumb-asses who can’t come together and decide on an appropriate time to coordinate the holidays and it’s decorations. The transition from the Orange Fall, the candy bar and a Turkey to the Red & White Winter and a tree in your house is not an easy one for some people.

I believe it was an unwritten rule at one time that Thanksgiving, was the appropriate time to start the Winter and Christmas decorating, but I suppose since it’s not even Halloween day yet and I’m freezing my rear end off, it could pass for Winter. It doesn’t really matter anyway- I have one strand of icicle lights still hanging from my house and one upper portion of a window covered in fake snow leftover from last Christmas- I guess I jumped the gun on Christmas ten months ago.

Enjoy, Barrelassers 🙂