The Hell Is My Passat?

Where the hell is my Passat?

What you’re about to read is not for the faint of heart. This is the tale of one woman’s brave journey to find her VW Passat in a parking garage. Like most frightening stories begin, it was a beautiful sunny day with almost no humidity.

Our heroine left her appointment somewhat exhausted and headed straight for the parking garage. She didn’t recognize any landmarks on the two-mile trek to the garage, but then again she never did. After following every sign she finally reached the parking garage, but something was wrong.

She saw a gentleman pass by. Excuse me, sir. Is this the Patient Parking garage?

The news was bad. She had walked to the Administrative Plaza garage. The patient parking was located on the other side of the building. Ignoring the blisters forming on the heel of each foot she pulled up her emotional bootstraps and began the eleventy-million mile trek to the correct garage.

Where the hell is my Passat?

Approximately forty-five minutes and one bathroom break later she arrived at the patient parking garage and found her car. Eureka! She located her keys, but was dismayed to find that her keyless remote wouldn’t unlock her doors. She tried to keep her cool as she pushed the button on the remote two more times. Exhausted and eager to go home, her patience wore thin. That’s when she noticed that someone parked next to her had dinged her car door. All composure was lost.

Are you kidding me? Who does that? What is wrong with this stupid remote? Its only job is to lock and unlock. Is that so hard? MY SPOILER is gone, too! This is unreal! Did someone wash my car? Wait a minute.

She headed back to the elevator while trying to keep a low profile. A passerby may have thought she was trying to break into a car that was very similar in make, model and color to her own.

After a couple strolls around garage levels A and B, our brave heroine located her automobile and was finally on her way home. Little did she know an interstate interchange was on the horizon. She was about to be forced to choose between Memphis and Knoxville when she desired a visit to neither. Learning to navigate I-24 had been on her to-do list for ages. In fact, it was her last New Year’s resolution.

No time like the present, she cried. Literally cried.

When she finally arrived home she was met by her husband. He had been born with logistical instincts and she knew he would never understand her near-debacle. What took so long? He asked.

My doctor was running three hours behind. So typical.

Stupid Suburban Problems

Stupid Suburban Problems- Chapter 1, Shane’s BIG Problem

With today’s twenty-four hour news cycle it’s hard to escape the almost constant barrage of atrocities occurring around the globe. I, for one, have a hard time sweating the small stuff when people I know and people I don’t know are hurting- suffering from untreatable illnesses, the victims of mass kidnappings, genocide, and continued inequality. However, when things start to look a little too bleak there’s a place I can always turn to. It’s not as far away as you may think, either.

Not far outside of Nashville resides a quiet suburb community called Withering Lows. It only takes a quick peek at Withering Lows Facebook page to tell that this isn’t a community concerned with other people’s problems. No, they have bigger fish (of their own) to fry.

Today’s story takes us into a day in the life of a man I’ll call “Shane.” Shane is God-fearing man’s man who doesn’t believe in cussing. No sir.

However, Shane’s limits are about to be tested when he encounters something on his morning run through the wooded neighborhood trail. It’s a straw, and it just broke his camel’s back. Read for yourself, but keep in mind that his words are unedited. Personally, I envision his entire message being shouted, so I can only assume that the sections in ALL CAPS were written while simultaneously firing an assault rifle into the air.

Shane: “OK residents I think I have seen enough. While running this morning, I came across the remnants of a bonfire on the walking trail. GIVE ME A BREAK. Do I have to quit my job and sit in a lawn chair to watch the subdivision each day. The speeding, the profanity, the way we address issues. The Board is getting overwhelmed with this type of..sorry but CRAP. I know that I will be bombarded with comments soon, but this is getting old. We were voted one of the best subdivisions around and we act like this. If you see something, take the time to address it please and not wait till we have a “mob” of complaints.” Stupid Suburban Problems First of all, I just want to thank Shane for being so brave. He didn’t have to share this story, but for some reason he did.

After reading this last night I was overcome with worry. I didn’t fall asleep until after ten o’clock and when I did I had a nightmare. In this nightmare, no one heeded Shane’s warning and he DID QUIT HIS JOB and buy a lawn chair. It was awful. All over the neighborhood dinners were burning and children weren’t being picked up from soccer on time. I ran to the aid of a woman in distress and I don’t think I’ll ever get her screams out of my head. “Why don’t we have a neighborhood pool?” she kept crying. I urged her to be strong for her family and not to think like that, but she continued, “I know we were invited to join that other neighborhood’s pool, but it isn’t really OURS. Nothing is ours!”

I still have a lot of unanswered questions, like How does Shane quitting his job somehow a threat to anyone but him and his family? 

Oh, wait. It isn’t. Go for it, Shane.

This concludes today’s look into Stupid Suburban Problems. Stay safe out there.

For those of you who have missed the last few posts coming to your email inbox, you can find them by clicking below.

How To Behave In Public: Lesson 1

I didn’t have to practice becoming awkward. It’s something I was born with. As I continue to learn and grow, I’d like to share my journey to normalcy so that other Awkwads may learn from my mistakes. I hope each person can take something from this lesson on how to behave in public and carry it awkwardly, perhaps in a fanny pack, throughout their awkward lives.

(Side note- only Awkwads can use the word, Awkwad. Those who aren’t awkward should refer to it as the A-word.)

I was in Target a couple of days ago when I thought I saw my friend Amber. She was at a distance when I first saw her profile, but then she turned and I could only see the back of her head. I’ve learned from past experiences NOT to run up and hug (or smack on the rear) people I think I know in public.

Walking a few feet closer was clearly out of the question. I didn’t have time for shenanigans. So I pretended to look at the little girl’s clothing while shouting, “Amber!” to see if she would hear her name and look around. After my fourth try, (yeah, I’m persistent) I heard one of the Target employees say, “We have a lost child.” I turned to see this employee standing behind me and speaking into her walky-talky. There was a sense of urgency in her voice as she asked, “Ma’am what does Amber look like? What is she wearing?”

I was frozen. Mortified. I could’ve just told her that I was too lazy to walk fifty feet and see if that was my friend, Amber BUT I didn’t. My gaze held steadfast on the sparkly, pink shirt I was gripping and my awkwardness came shining through.

I just shook my head as my weak voice uttered, “Never mind. Don’t need her.”

I’m pretty sure the Target employee stood there staring at me for awhile, but much like a turtle can withdraw into its shell when it senses danger, I am able to slip into a fugue state when I sense embarrassment. I have no idea what happened for the next couple of hours, but according to the items found later in my car I made several impulse purchases before leaving Target. Then, I went to Krispy Kreme.

Amber is so high maintenance.

How to behave in Public


Luke and Sadie: A Relationship Rollercoaster

Luke and I took a trip to Greenwood, MS last week to visit Robin O’Bryant and her three girls. As usual, my little Casanova fell hard and fast. His newest love interest was Robin’s youngest, Lady Sadie.

Luke and Sadie: the relationship rollercoaster

With the big girls at school and Robin needing to run errands, I offered to take Luke and Sadie to lunch. It was our second day in Greenwood and I decided on Steven’s Barbeque- an excellent choice. Luke and Sadie had already chosen a table and when I sat down with our food Luke introduced me to the man at the the next table. “Mom, this is a man we’ve been talking to. We told him that we are cousins and that this is our first REAL date.”

Help me, Jesus.

Luke and Sadie Later that afternoon with Sadie in her tiara and Luke in his Batman mask, they wed. However, it wouldn’t be long before their marriage had its first hiccup.

Not long after the wedding ceremony they were playing Minecraft in the girl’s room and Luke had a cow. I don’t mean he pitched a fit. I mean while playing the game of Minecraft he had acquired the singular form of “cattle.” This was a problem because Sadie is afraid of cows. She stormed out of the room with tears in her eyes as Luke shouted, “Fine, Sadie! Fine. I’ll get rid of the cow!! What do you want, Sadie? Do you want a pig? Can we AT LEAST HAVE A PIG?!”

Things cooled off after they agreed on obtaining a pig for the most pointless game ever created. Side note- if you know the plot, or point of Minecraft, please get in touch with me.

At dinner that night Sadie spilled Luke’s pink lemonade. She tried to make it up to him by tying his shoes. While he was impressed, the lemonade was something he just couldn’t get past. You can see him here breaking things off.

Luke and Sadie break up

In a show of poor taste, he tried to immediately get a rebound girl in Sadie’s older sister, Emma.

“You’re my girlfriend, now!” he told Emma.

Emma was not excited and informed him that she already had a boyfriend. This did not deter Luke from laying on the charm. He began pulling up his shirt. “Have you seen my five-year-old belly?”

Robin interjected. “You know it isn’t really nice to date the sister of someone you just broke up with.”

Luke shrugged his shoulders and pointed back and forth between Emma and Sadie. “Eenie. Meenie. Miney. LOVE.”

Similar laughter and antics continued throughout the week, but none as funny as what I witnessed on our last night at the O’Bryant’s. Luke asked Robin’s eldest daughter to connect their iPads so they could all play Minecraft together. She was wearing her bathrobe after having just showered and told him that she would do it as soon as she got dressed. The second she walked out of the room, Sadie stuck her little finger in Luke’s face. There was fire in her eyes and she spoke through gritted teeth.

“If you EVER saw my sister nekkid I would be SO MAD at you!”

For the first time all week, Luke was speechless and I wasn’t about to complain.

Luke-isms: An Unwelcome Tub-side Chat

Here is your latest installment of Luke-isms, as promised.


It had been a particularly trying day as I attempted to get housework, writing, and Luke business taken care of. It was the kind of day that Brantley received a text message from me saying, “Have fun at the gym after work because when you get home, he’s all YOURS.”

Brantley got home that evening and I headed upstairs to take a bath.

“I just need ten minutes to myself,” I told him.

The tub had no sooner filled and I turned off the water to relax when I heard the door open. A familiar sound followed. It was the sound of Luke dragging his stool slowly across the bathroom floor. He parked it right next to the tub and sat down.

“WHAT are you doing? And where is your Dad? I’m trying to take a bath, Lucas. I just want some privacy.”

“It’s ok, Mom. I’ll just sit here and watch you quietly.”

“No. No. No! Brantley, where are you?” I shouted.

Brantley popped his head in the door. “Luke, leave Mom alone. She’s trying to take a bath.”

“Ok.” Luke said as he hopped off his stool. Then, he stopped. “Oh Mom, just one more fing. I know we’ve talked about this before, but I forgot. What happened to your penis, again?”

“Lucas Payne Wescott, girls don’t have penises…”

He interrupted, “Oh, that’s right. Baginas. Baginas. You have baginas.”

I wished for someone to hold my head under the water until I stopped struggling.

I wasn’t asking for the world. I just wanted ten minutes alone. With my baginas.

Stay tuned for the next installment of Luke-isms where Luke spanks himself as he shouts, “Don’t ask any questions, Mom. Just trust me. I deserve this.”

Parenting Magazine Interviews Author, Robin O’Bryant And Talks Favorite Blogs!

Parenting Magazine

I’m thrilled about several things.

My friend, Robin O’Bryant’s book Ketchup Is A Vegetable has made the New York Time’s best seller list and is popping up everywhere. In fact, I still have a bruise on my arm over her excitement after realizing that Ketchup was being sold in Target just last week.

“Target, Lori! TARGET!!!” (wham)

Oprah always said love shouldn’t hurt, but that’s a story for another day.

hardbackfront Parenting Magazine recently interviewed Robin for an article to talk about her book, her family, and even her favorite humor blogs. You’ll never guess who made the cut!

Will it be Maya Angelou, Deepak Chopra and Loripalooza? You’ll have to head over to Parenting Magazine and read “The Truth About Parenting: Robin O’Bryant And Her Chicks” for yourself.

(But most likely)

Here’s another fun fact. Robin’s next book, Are You There God? It’s Me, Mommy is currently available for pre-order on Amazon. It’s only a fun fact because I wasn’t there to get punched when she got the news.


Easter Crafts: Keeping it classy since 2013

Easter is a big deal in our family.

Every year we hold Easter competitions, and not to brag, but last year I took home first place in the Easter bonnet category.

However, this year I had to work all weekend. Nightshift. Blech!

I arrived home from work Easter morning as Brantley and Luke were just waking up. Luke wasted no time tearing through his Easter basket. I enjoyed watching his excitement as my Ambien kicked in and my eyes glazed over.

Suddenly, I was hit with a great idea.

(Stay with me)

Since I wouldn’t be there to participate in the games and watch the egg hunt I should MAKE SOMETHING for all of the kids. YES!!!

What happened next resulted in a craft destruction that I would later wake up and discover in the dining room.

The place was ransacked. Had we been robbed?

Nope. The only gun involved had required hot glue and the room was covered in shrapnel.

Finally, I understood why Brantley kept insisting, “Go to bed!” and “No one wants that!”


Say what you want, but it’s amazing how quickly I whipped up these Easter rabbits (out of maracas I had previously made out of Christmas decorations).

Industrious much?

Like most people, I keep a well-stocked supply of pipe cleaners, bandanas, googly eyes, and baby doll hair in my craft cabinet. The only difference is, I know how to work it.

Luke-isms: Warming up to Kindergarten

Luke’s reluctance to start Kindergarten next year has been unwavering.

That is, until recently.

For months, any time the topic of conversation turned to Kindergarten he made sure to interject, “But I’m not going ’til I’m six! You can’t make me go, yet.”

He was less than enthusiastic.

However, when a little boy in his preschool class started talking about how he couldn’t wait “to go to the big school next year” things started to change.

He was getting a positive opinion from one of his own peers and right away I could tell he was warming up to the idea.

A few days later when driving past the school I heard a mumble from the backseat. “Well, they DO have a nice playground.”

Score! The tides were beginning to turn.

It was only a couple of days later that a family friend asked, “So Luke, what are you going to do in Kindergarten next year?”

Without a second thought he answered confidently. “Well, I’ll prob-uhly do some arts and crafts, learn some geography aaaaand do some parkour.”

I decided not to tell him that the county doesn’t have a parkour curriculum in place. I’ll let that responsibility fall on his teacher. God bless her. All I have to do is get him in the door.

Stay tuned for the next edition of Luke-isms when you’ll hear…


The Summer Inquisition

Luke has been rampant with questions the last couple of weeks.
“Why do we wear shirts?”
“Do monkeys have tails?”
“How does the beach work?”
“Do all Daddies work at CVS?”
“Where’s your penis?”
“What makes the sun move around in the sky”

Not all of these questions are easily answered, and you can bet that each answer will be followed up with, “Why?” For instance, I told him I loved him this morning. “What does, ‘I love you’ REALLY mean?” he asked.
“Well, it means that I care about you a whole lot.”
“Because you’re my son and I like spending time with you.”
“Because you’re funny. You make me laugh a lot.”
“Just forget I said it.”