Things That Must Go: $20 Donated to NieNie in your name

I’m sure you’ve heard of Stephanie and Christian Nielson’s accident and the blogging community’s efforts on their behalf. I confess I feel stupid talking about someone I don’t know. Even if she is Mormon, and a blogger, and probably (hopefully) hopped up on enough good drugs that even if she heard I was trying to capitalize on her personal tragedy help by holding a (meager) giveaway in her name, she wouldn’t care (or she would, but in a good way, you know, because she seems like a genuinely good person).

I thought about donating my BlogHerAds revenue, and then I thought — Why the heck am I so stingy? So — leave a comment with your Things That Must Go, and I’ll donate $20 to NieNie. You can also learn more about what’s already been done and read about the recovery process.

Two fund-raising efforts that I’m excited to submit my own creations to are the Great NieNie Cookie Sale (I’ll be making Homemade Oreos) and The Blog Book (I’m searching a bit desperately for a funny post in my archives). I encourage you to join in those efforts, if you have any interest at all in cookies or blogging, and really, who doesn’t love those two things?

Here’s my Things That Must Go: Back-to-School Edition

Hustling for business at the school Skate Night. I took the girls to Sally’s school last night, where the parking lot had been cleared for skating, biking, and loud cheesy music.

As I sat on the grass eating a cold hamburger, I noticed a cute teenage girl and her mother, who looked like a Miss Utah handler.

The daughter took a flier from her mother, approached a group of elementary-age girls, and launched into a cheerful sales patter about Mini Drill Team Camps held at the High School on Saturdays.

For your registration fee, you get a free t-shirt, and personal instruction, and there are so many girls who wait in long lines to get in, but you can register early, and you’ll make so many friends and the girls who go there are so cool and pretty and you’ll be so popular.

Just remember to show your mother the flier as soon as you can, and tell her how much you want to be JUST LIKE ME when you grow up.

Now it’s your turn — what things must go? (oh. Deadline? Hmm, well, to be honest, I’ll donate the $20 bucks even if no one comments, but I sure would like to hear your things that must go. To be eligible to have the donation made in your name, comment before Monday night, okay?)

I know it’s been a long time since the iTunes Things That Must Go, but here are a few great entries from last month:

Stacey @ Happy Are We As for my 2cents, I think this whole idea of tv signals going digital has got to go! Why must *everything* be upgraded in the name of progress? (Seriously. I thought this was a joke when I first heard about it. We’re perfectly happy with our bunny ears, over here. As long as we’ve got, too).

Beth The inability to find ANYTHING in Home Depot including a sales person. The place is huge and all I want is a light switch plate (and some nobs) and it’s like going on the ultimate scavenger hunt. Every sales associate points you in a different direction and secretly I don’t think ANY of them know where anything is. (My problem is I usually have no idea what to call the super-important-thingie I need).

and the winner: Tiffany The clothes the creepy guy wears.

He roams aimlessly around our house, going through our junk mail in the mailbox, looking in the windows of our (locked) cars, and not replying when I say hi. He has worn the same grey shirt, jeans, and dirty sneakers since we moved in. I hear that he lives next door but his wife won’t let him in b/c he “lost it” mentally and is basically homeless now. I feel sorry for the old unshaven alcoholic-man, but his clothes have GOT to go.

His wife should throw his clothes out on the lawn to him or something. Maybe they only do that on movies and commercials when there’s a balcony though.

(I’ve got your email address, Tiffany, so I’ll send that iTunes card right over. Might I suggest Ingrid Michaelson’s new song “Be Okay.” Great!)

TTMG: iTunes giveaway and a novel winner

So, I was right: people want underwear more than books. Though some mothers don’t have time to read, not one person said they didn’t need new underwear because their kids keep them too busy to shower.

I’m not sure what this means besides grooming being a bigger priority than reading, but I do think John Edwards could’ve learned something from y’all: if he’d only concentrated on wearing underwear at all times instead of reading one too many steamy Harlequin American Political Romances, he might still be on Obama’s VP list.

This week I’m offering a $10 iTunes giftcard to the winner of Things That Must Go. I know ten bucks isn’t much, but I’ve already blown this week’s ad revenue on a Happy Meal for the kids. Plus, iTunes is cool, right? I only ask that you download Lenka’s The Show with part of your winnings. Just kidding. Leaving a comment with your Things That Must Go is the only thing you have to do. Well, really you only have to pay taxes and die. Or go to jail and die, or get signed up as a Conscientious Tax Objector and die. Leaving a comment is sounding better and better, huh?

But first, here’s the winner of the Nora Roberts/Joan Wickersham book giveaway (email me your address and which book you’d like!):

Scarehaircare: Skimpy bikinis. If you are stupid enough to wear them, I am not going to stop my daughter when she points and says loudly “Mom, look at that!” because she sees your bum before you can pull your bikini bottom back up after coming down the water slide. (The same thing goes for jeans that are too low to sit in properly.) I am all for allowing the children to say what we cannot, in all politeness, say.

And two Honorable Mentions, which were in no way influenced by nepotism:

Grampa: One other thing that has to go are popsicle bags that can’t be opened without a lethal weapon (knife, scissors). No clever use of fingernails, teeth, or brute stength can open them. They don’t even leak when the popsickle melts; the sticks float, and the “soup” tastes like Kool-Aid. Such bags have spread to candy bars, cookies, and crackers. Away with such unopenable bags. Yes.

Tom Johnson: -Dryers that sounds like German army tanks.
-Feelings of inadequacy for not keeping your kids 100% reverent during church.
-Leaving your real glasses in the car and instead wearing sunglasses all day and evening in the house, looking like a retard. :) Do I make fun of how you look in your clip-on sunglasses? 🙂
-People who think hacking someone’s site and bringing it down is funny.
-Loud, angry voices in any context — at home, church, in the car. (Well, if you’re driving alone it’s okay.)
-Floam. Sounds like a cool idea, until it’s time to clean it up.

And here are my Things That Must Go for this week:

1. To the Nice Man at the Gym: I know it seems strange that I’ve ventured into your territory of pulleys and benchpresses; I don’t like it any more than you do. But I hope we can learn to share this maze of equipment, which is why I’m asking you to please stop grunting. Please stop grunting. Please. I realize you’re lifting five thousand pounds and sweating and bursting at your muscle seams, but I cannot count to fifteen when you are grunting, grunting, grunting. What’s that? You didn’t catch that? You can’t hear anything, much less your own grunting, because you are listening to Coldplay on your iPod? Well, at least you have good taste in music. Just. Please stop grunting.

2. Fax machines. The Chinese gave us gunpowder and fireworks and smoggy Olympics. I’m sure we could pin the fax machine on them too. Seriously. Why can’t we just email and scan and email some more? Is it just me or are fax machines about as modern as a horse and buggy?

Now it’s your turn: what’s buggin’ this week? iTunes giveaway deadline is midnight Saturday.

TTMG: Winners, winners, everywhere, and not a sponge in sight

First, if you haven’t entered the Things That Must Go Nora Roberts/Joan Wickersham giveaway, it’s not too late. Second, I am quite behind; I love reading the entries for things that must go, and it’s hard to choose a winner sometimes. Which made the poll for last week’s fun. Speaking of which . . .

The winner of the Hanes $50 giveaway is Alisha @ Party of Five with 35% of the vote. Congratulations! Email me your address, and we’ll get the gift cards to you. Thanks to all those who entered and voted, and mostly I want to thank you for validating my inability to love the SpongeBob. I feel like all my time on the internet has not been wasted.

Congratulations also to EMama @ Righter’s Writings for identifying the Pride and Prejudice quote and winning the iTunes card. One of the best things about the most recent version was that I wanted to hold Mr. Collins’ head to my bosom, in a completely maternal sort of way. Not the way that I ALWAYS want to hold Mr. Darcy, whether he’s Colin Firth or Matthew MacFadyen. Though I’ll pass on Laurence Olivier, so not ALWAYS.

And finally, after seven years of procrastination on my part, the winner of the LLBean Tote Bag is Michelle @ Woodbury’s Four with:

The White Van Abandoned in My Front Yard.

Yes, that’s right. A solitary evening last week I was nestled in my bed, listening to the rain pound against the panes of my skylights while reading when I heard something that resembled a tornado. Okay, so I have never survived a close encounter with a tornado, but I’ve watched enough of those storm chaser specials on the Weather Channel to know what a tornado supposedly sounds like. :-) And it sounded like what I heard. And felt. A little rumbling on the ground, screeching, almost a groan like a train….

I dashed out of bed, ready to grab my kids — oh yes, and my 72 hour kits that are complete and ready to go … riiiiight — and hide out in the laundry room. I peered through the blinds to find a white van crunched into my lilac trees in my front yard.

I was too chicken to go outside to check out the situation (hubby was out of town) until the cops arrived. Apparently the driver of the van fled the scene and left me a fine yard ornament. GRRRR! Oh, and did I mention he ran over my recycling bin, too?

The nerve.

I think you’ll agree that it just doesn’t get any better than that. I mean, as far as things that must go.

Deadline on the Nora Roberts/Joan Wickersham giveaway is midnight Wednesday.

Things That Must Go: Nora Roberts/Joan Wickersham Giveaway

Hey! Glad to see you back here for Things That Must Go. Somehow I think nothing will ever compare to the great underwear giveaway of 2008, but that’s okay. I have a couple of things I need to get off my chest (no, not those things, though frankly I didn’t like them even before they went saggy), and that’s good enough for me.

This week I’m offering your choice of Nora Robert’s latest, Tribute, or Joan Wickersham’s The Suicide Index. Tribute isn’t Nora’s best (that would be Birthright or Heaven and Earth or Hidden Treasures), but it’s entertaining: a perfect beach book. I reviewed The Suicide Index yesterday. Not a beach book, unless you’re on the thorny Oregon coast, but very worth your while.

To enter the contest, simply leave a comment with your Things That Must Go before midnight Wednesday night. Here are mine:

Things That Must Go

1. Excessive Emotion. I’m wondering if the lower hormonal levels of menopause bring with them fewer emotional storms. If so, it might be worth the risk of osteoporosis and breast cancer. Or maybe not. Sometimes I understand the appeal of being comfortably numb. I hate feeling guilty, sad, ashamed, selfish, etc. Cheerful, I know.

2. Vehicle Repair Bills. I am being suitably punished for risking the second commandment when it comes to my minivan. The other day I found the passenger-side window halfway down. I never roll down my windows, even when it is a million degrees. That’s what automatic sliding doors are for. By the time everyone is strapped in, most of the trapped air has been replaced by fresher air. So when my window fell into the door completely and didn’t respond to the up/down button, driving around was torture. Stinky, loud, hot torture. I know, there are people in the world who would love to be tortured like that, but it was still bad.

Then the Honda people told me that not only was my “regulator” kaput but my “front engine block mount thingie” was shot too. 724 dollars and one laptop fund later, the object of my affection is all better. Please do not write and tell me that I could have driven around with a broken “front engine block mount thingie” for years without a problem. I don’t think I could handle the emotional fallout of such a revelation.

It’s not to late to vote for your favorite in the Hane’s Giveaway Things That Must Go. I’m gonna announce the winners of the LLBean Tote Bag and the $50 Hane’s prize soon.

Things That Must Go: In Support of Democracy and Progress, and the Land of the Free Giveaway!

Wow. Remind me not to hook up to the Bloggy Giveaways Carnival next quarter. Unless a few more of you fine giveaway hoppers actually subscribe to my feed (or by email), and agree to bear a fourth child for me.

Because there were 661 entries, I decided to do a poll and let you pick the winner. Unfortunately, I had to disqualify anyone who mentioned high gas prices, George Bush, and/or the fact that I should be playing the Glad Game instead. Not that I disagree (necessarily), but those are just a bit . . . obvious.

If you left a cool TTMG that was unfairly ommitted from this poll due to my random ability to read multiple comments (which I’m not used to, unlike some people), leave a comment and I’ll see about giving your TTMG another shot. Your write-in vote counts!

In the Running (scroll down for the poll box)

1) Alisha @ Party of Five: Spongebob Squarepants. Sorry to all you SBSP fans but the little yellow man is crude and obnoxious. I have no idea how my four-year old even knows about him. . . .the episodes I have seen I CAN’T stand. . . . Cartoon Network, you must go. FAREWELL! . . . (YES! YES! FINALLY! Someone else who doesn’t get why it’s so cool to like the pesky porifera. Down with Spongebob!).

2) LivingforGod: Things that must go include pride, selfishness, rebellion against God, using God’s name in vain, provocative/immodest clothing, and asbestos in old homes. (I’m not so sure about the first five, but definitely that asbestos MUST GO).

3) Tabby: My “Mommy Wings” must go. My son went to scout camp last week and as I was waving goodbye I could feel (and I swear I could hear too) my upper arm flab waving back and forth more than my hand.

Cold sores also must go. Especially since my husband thinks it’s just terribly funny to announce to the entire grocery aisle that “the cream I need for my lip herpes is really expensive.” Thankfully (for him) I’ve decided that he doesn’t need to go! (At least he is anatomically specific).

4) Megan: Having to do the dishes…maybe hubby can help every once in a while??? (Not terribly original, I agree, but just this morning Grampa sent an email about a bumper sticker he saw: No husband has ever been shot washing the dishes. It’s the little things, people.

5) Anna @ The View from My Shoes: The people who say that we have too many kids (really we don’t…just four so far) MUST GO! When they are ignorant enough to say that I always ask which child they would like me to get rid of. That usually shuts them up. (Although sometimes rejoinders like this can proceed from the impulse of the moment, often they are the result of previous study. ($10 iTunes card for the first person to name that movie, not including my sister.)

[poll id=”3″]

Thanks for playing along! Poll closes Sunday at midnight, at which time I’ll announce the winner of the Hanes $50 gift card.

This coming weekend’s Things That Must Go giveaway features your choice of books: Nora Robert’s latest, Tribute, or Joan Wickersham’s The Suicide Index: Putting my father’s Death in Order. Basically you can choose escapist romance or romantic/tragic escape. Come back on Saturday to share some more Things That Must Go!

Things That Must Go: From the Ridiculous to the Sublime. Also, Free Undies — a $50 Hanes Giveaway!

Bloggy Giveaways Quarterly Carnival Button

***Updated*** This giveaway is now closed. I’ll be posting a poll with the top 5 TTMG entries later today. Come back to vote for the winner!***

(If you’re here from the Bloggy Giveaways Carnival, you can skip my post if you’re pressed for time (really — Just subscribe to my feed while you’re here, and you can catch me later, after all the giveaway madness is over. For now, leave a comment with your Things That Must Go to be eligible for the $50 Hanes gift certificate, good for anything in their online store, plus shipping. Deadline July 30th, Wednesday, midnight.)

Welcome to Things That Must Go. I thought about postponing for a week, because I haven’t done last week’s entries justice yet and we just got back from camping for Pioneer Day. But Grampa forwarded a most serendipitous picture that I must share.

If you Blog Hop at all, you probably heard about the BlogHer conference, and, even if you didn’t get spoiled by the swag there, you might still be pretty blase about bloggy giveaways. So, free underwear? Even 50 dollars worth? Pretty smokin’ prize, huh? Especially now that Hanes promises to solve Susan’s wedgie problem, just in time for back-to-school. There’s nothing worse than a wedgie on your first day.

Or, if you’re not ready to talk Princess backpacks and class schedules yet, Hanes is partnering with Disney for a Vacation in Comfort promotion. Although, the “family of four” part of the vacation prize must go. Right? I mean, have a third kid, and you’re always trying to decide which one has to stay home. Or have ten, and it’s Survivor: Who gets to go with the family to Disney Edition.

To enter the $50 Hanes giveaway (good for anything in their online store, plus shipping), simply leave a comment with your Things That Must Go before midnight Wednesday. Good luck! And, to get you thinking, here are mine (ridiculous first, then sublime):

1. The Redneck Tanktop. Taken outside a Walmart (of course!) in Gardendale, AL.

(I regret to say that I don’t know to whom I should give credit for this fantastic photo. If anyone knows who is responsible for such fashion and/or photographic genius, please advise).


2. Death that comes too early. I’d hesitate to mention this so close to the Redneck Tanktop, but I think that Randy Pausch wouldn’t mind the juxtaposition. Also, it’s been on my mind ever since I heard the news (on CNN, at a fast food joint on Bear Lake). I discovered and posted the video of Prof. Pausch’s Last Lecture four months ago. At the time, some bloggers were speculating that he wasn’t really dying because he’d outlived his pancreatic cancer prognosis. What a way to prove those bloggers wrong.

I know (relatively) little about Randy Pausch, and I know that around the world people die every day before their time (or so it feels). And yet. I can’t think of this man’s wife and three kids without imagining how empty their house must feel tonight. Whatever your beliefs: resurrection or reincarnation or recycle; whatever your faith: strong or weak or nonexistent, good examples of living well are beyond value, and I mourn for this complete stranger, and his family. Here are a few of my favorite quotes from his last lecture:

I probably got more from that dream and not accomplishing it than I got from any of the ones that I did accomplish.

It’s not about how to achieve your dreams. It’s about how to lead your life. If you lead your life the right way, the karma will take care of itself. The dreams will come to you.

and, for Marcy who will soon be free to date again:

Syl said, It took me a long time but I’ve finally figured it out. When it comes to men that are romantically interested in you, it’s really simple. Just ignore everything they say and only pay attention to what they do. It’s that simple. It’s that easy.

Now it’s your turn. Share your Things That Must Go — ridiculous or sublime, humorous or humbling. And hug your kids tonight (unless that would wake them up. Then just whisper that you love them. Because you can.)

I’ll be posting the winners from last week’s LLBean giveaway and this week’s Hanes giveaway on Thursday. Thanks for participating. I just love reading your things that must go. Somehow complaining sounds a lot better in writing.

Things That Must Go and an L.L.Bean Tote Bag Giveaway

Welcome to Things That Must Go. This week’s giveaway is a custom L.L.Bean Tote Bag, but first, here are a couple of my favorite entries and the winner of the iTunes giveaway from last weekend.


Robyn of Robyn’s Online World: Long drawn out pauses on reality shows announcing winners of the challenge, event, show, etc. Thank goodness for TiVo so I can skip that, but geez folks come on! (At first glance this might seem a tad superficial, but, really. Do they need that seven minute cliffhanger before revealing that Kherington and Gev are going home? Not that I watch So You Think You Can Dance or anything. No. I can wait ’til American Idol is on again for my reality show fix).

Celena Metzger: hmmm definitely those cloth hand Towels in public restrooms where everyone and their mother has used with goodness knows what kind of germs! (I think we’ve touched on public restrooms before, but the fabric hand towels. Yes. Those must go!)

And the winner is:

EMama: Fish pill burps. Like being pregnant isn’t nasty enough on its own. (I’ve been thinking about pregnancy lately, and no, I’m not pregnant, nor am I WonderWoman. But also? If anyone ever tells you that castor oil induces pregnancy? A) It does not, and 2) It tastes awwwwwful, and 2.5) It is a laxative. Lax-a-tive). Congrats to EMama. I shall be emailing you shortly.

And now, (pause) (pause). My

Things That Must Go

False Confessions. Recently I read a post* inviting people to anonymously confess their darkest secrets. Several commenters made absolutely painful, heartbreaking confessions, and I hope that doing so allowed them to envision making more meaningful confessions and figuring out how to fix whatever needs to be fixed in their lives.

One of the confessions was just a bit off, though. Here it is, in my words:

All right. I’m going to be brave and not go the anonymous route. Of course, anonymity is fine for you cowards with such bizarre problems, but here’s my terrible, hideous secret: Once I worked for a very mean man. He said I couldn’t read [insert literary classic] at work, even when all my work was done to perfection. But I can’t go even a day without reading, and so I read, and . . . sniff . . . I LIED to him when he asked me. This was terrible, because I am NOT a liar, and even if my boss was as bad as Hitler burning books in Berlin, I should have told the truth. This weighed on my sensitive conscience for years, until I broke down and wrote him a letter confessing all and apologizing profusely. Even though he was a very, very mean man. Who didn’t like to read.

This is like saying in a job interview, when they ask you what your biggest flaw is: “Sometimes I work too hard.” Or, to a fellow-PTA Mom: “I just love my family too much, I guess.”

False confessions, while understandable in a job interview (Make your weaknesses sound like strengths!) or in any highly-volatile situation like a PTA meeting, are just one of the many Things That Must Go!

I hope you’re ready to share your Things That Must Go. This week’s giveaway is a custom LLBean Tote Bag (small or medium, shipping to the U.S. only). You can design it any way you want (including monagramming, though that does seem a bit . . . hmm). My mother-in-law gave me an LLB tote several years ago, and I can definitely recommend it — with the long straps, outside pocket and zip-top. Mmm-mmm.

Simply leave a comment with your Things That Must Go before midnight Monday July 21st.


 *I’d link to the post, but if my mom knew I was reading posts (and comments!) like those, she probably wouldn’t let me use her laptop ever again.