Archive for the ‘the ones about hungryman’ Category

I believe in the goodness of layers. Layers of color. Layers of cotton. Layers of wool. Layers of warmth.

The temperature has dropped about ten degrees below freezing and nearly fifty degrees below comfort. This means that a scarf is fixed permanently around my neck and another one is added anytime I’m required to confront the chill Minnesota air. It’s less than friendly in December.

If you could see me through the little web cam portal that is perpendicular to my nose, you would find that even though I’ve been nursing a cooling cup of pomegranate green tea for over an hour my chocolate hat is still pulled down over my ears and my soft camel scarf is still knotted about my neck.

The chunky brown beret was an impulse buy. That is if you call losing all your body heat while running through the snow into Target an impulse. That or a primal instinct.

Either way, I marched my Uggs right over to the hats and pulled the thickest cable knit one over my damp hair. Thankfully,  I remembered to pull off the tag and pay for it before I went back out into the storm.

If this web cam was streaming, you would see the snow swirling down behind me and coffee drinkers chattering all about me. You find me in my favorite coffee house clacking away on my shiny new laptop, compliments of HungryMan’s annual Black Friday raid.

For the past five years, he’s been braving frigid temperatures and lawless line-cutters through the wee hours of the night in the hopes of scoring the most terrific technology bargains of the year. And each year his tales of sure luck and grit become more far-fetched and ridiculous.

This year, at 4:00 am when I was soundly asleep under a snug layer of down, HungryMan learned that he had come out into the cold for nothing. There were no more tickets for the laptop he wanted. His brother was this year’s line-buddy, so he decided to keep his brother company for the remaining hour. Once inside Best Buy, HungryMan hunted down managers with marksman-like skill. Each one had the same response, “Sorry, there are no more tickets for that laptop.”

After waiting in line to pick up his brother’s desktop and waiting in another line to pay for it, the brothers decided to make one more pass around the crowded store. They were ten feet away from exiting, when a manager ran up to HungryMan.
“Hey, were you the one looking for the HP pavilion dv4?”
“That’s me.”
“We just had one turned in.”
Unbelievable. What’s even more unbelievable is that it happens every year.
Oh, and then his friends love this part, he sells the year-old laptop on Ebay or Craigslist for about the same price as the one he has just purchased. Free upgrades, people. Free upgrades. Though it generally takes a good week or two for the movers to transfer the files and for me to set up house again.

Excuse me for a moment, but the cutest little sweater dress just walked into the coffee shop. I’m obsessed with sweater dresses.

Gramma Penny came home with the most darling one from Paris and Shanel has the cutest one from Banana. Both are a little too pricey for this non-working girl.

I bought this one at Target, but HungryMan thought the shoulders look like some medieval armor or some prehistoric extinct land creature. What do you think?


I loved the color. According to Penny, purple is all the rage in Paris. Really, regardless of what y’all think, I won’t be able to wear it again. Each time I think about putting it on, I feel like I’m gearing up for battle.

Not exactly the sentiment I was going for.

This girl’s sweater dress is a gold waffle weave with lovely bell sleeves. No shoulder issues there. Do you think I should ask her where it’s from?

Hold on.

Well, she was as nice as her outfit. The dress is from Macy’s. That store is huge. I’m always overwhelmed by the vastness. I prefer the boutique shops with a smaller, more selective collection. It helps with indecisiveness.

Wow, I set out to tell you what we’ve been up to these past few weeks and I haven’t even gotten there. Sorry. I blame the chatter on the long absence and severe lack of sleep. Thanks for letting me blather on, run-on sentences and all.

It’s already time for me to put my outer layers back on so I can pick up my sweetie baby.

She’s become obsessed with layers too.

Layers of curls.

img_3516Hello Shirley Temple.

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i do, again

and always.

You are still my favorite.

Happy 9th Anniversary, HungryMan!

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Remember when I told you about how HungryMan was flinging our friend, Johnny through the water like Indiana’s bull whip. I witnessed this harrowing event through the lens of our video camera. The jetski-dragging-tubing-fool footage has been hiding out our computer for weeks due to the very poor camera work (me).

What can I say? I was so worried that I was witnessing Johnny’s lasts moments on earth that I forgot to zoom in. I apologize.

So just in case you think that I make up all of the HungryMan’s antics for good blog fodder, here’s your proof in miniature:

And lest you think HungryMan reserves this water torture for dudes only, let me direct you to Exhibit B.

Three years ago, we invited HungryMan’s old roommates from House Fridley and their ladies to come down to the lake. We celebrated HungyMan’s 28th birthday with high-speed boating, piles of burgers, grilled peaches, and a little game he likes to call, “shake ‘n’ bake.”

It’s LOVE in any language.

We are headed down to the lake with the nearly the same gang this morning to celebrate HungryMan’s 31st birthday.

Fortunately for me and my lungs the jetski went into early retirement this spring.

Have a great weekend everyone!!

This post is done, why are still scrolling down? Oh, you want more HungryMan jetski action? You want to see the full version of the Shake ‘n’ Bake video, don’t you? Fine. Here it is.

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HungryMan and I have been supporting Netflix since 2001. It single-handedly eliminated the video rental battles that were characteristic of movie dates in the early stages of our relationship.

Previous to 2001, we would arrive at the video store with a fairly good idea of what we were going to rent that night. However, once HungryMan walked in the store and saw the endless possiblities he became paralized by the indecision. He would walk about the store with two to four DVD’s in his hands while surveying at all the other options. I would get tired of waiting, sit on the floor, and pout. Really, it was a great way to start a date night.

So when we received the Netflix flyer in our mailbox, it was love at first sight.

While we do agree on Netflix, our tastes in movies still swing in varying directions. We each put our requests in the queue and watch whatever DVD comes in the mail.

Today, we received two movies thanks to a mix-up between Ava and the out-going mail she mistook for in-coming mail. Here’s what was in our mail slot:

I think you are capable of assessing who chose what.

As for what we’re going to watch tonight, that remains to be seen.

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If you give a daddy a mouse play ticket, he’ll probably drive you to the theater. When he gets there he’ll see all the other mice and want you to look like a mouse too. So he’ll paint some whiskers on your face and help you make some ears.

If you glue fur on the ears, he’ll notice that you got some glue on your hands.

He won’t want that glue to end up on his cloths so he’ll send you to the bathroom to wash them.

If you come back out to find him, he’ll notice everyone else is walking in. He’ll want to get in line too, so he’ll ask to see the ticket. If you show him the ticket, he’ll help you find your seat.

If the lights go dark, he’ll probably whisper, “Ava’s, it’s about to begin.” He might even think that he will take a quick nap, because after all it’s a mouse play for children.

But if the mouse gets his foot stuck in the bucket and then tries to use a mop to pry it out and then the bucket flies off the mouse and traps the boy’s head, he’ll laugh until it tickles your ears. He may even laugh so loud that you want to cover them with the furry mouse ears, especially if the mouse then gets both feet stuck in the bucket while unknowingly knocking the boy in the head with the mop.

If the mouse is chased by giant hairballs or his tail is sucked up by a crazy vacuum, he’ll let you sit on his lap and hide. But it will be a bouncy lap because he is still laughing out loud.

And when the mouse gets his last cookie, daddy will remember that he is also very hungry. If you’re all done with the mouse play, he’ll probably drive you to a café.

After all, he is always a hungry daddy.

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It should be apparent by this point in the life of this blog that safety is not high on the list of traits packed into one man known as HungryMan.

Whether it is sledding, log riding or jumping on a trampoline flinging his three-year-old girl like a ragdoll with a spring coil neck, my husband likes to push the bounds and limits of safety.

The whole “Fred-drives-HungryMan’s-car-home-and-back-again” scenario worked great except for one glitch: how do we reunite in Iowa. Heather’s wonder-van with doors that open and close at a push of button and DVD-player that operates from the front dash does has its limitations.

Namely, seven seats with seven seatbelts. Heather and her girls take up five of those seatbelts leaving our family two.

Now a sensible person would look that this situation and conclude that if there is only two seats for three people than one of those persons must find alternate transportation.

And clearly in the company of seven women, HungryMan is the odd man out.

Now he was not a man without options. We have another car, and we had two sets of neighbors that were driving to the same lake that very same evening. With five extra seatbelts between the pair, he could have found seat among them.

“I’ll just ride on the floor,” he announced the night before we were going to leave.

“What? No.”

I dismissed the comment as ludicrouse. Who in 2008 would ride in a motor vehicle on the highway without being properly restrained to the seat.

As the evening wore on it became increasingly apparent that he truly did intend to ride on the floor.

“Dude, no. This is ridiculous. You can’t possibly ride on the floor.”

We began a three-way debate and I was in the losing corner.

“Rachel, it’s not that big of a deal,” Heather said, revealing the subtle shades of her rebel nature. Well, sure it’s not that big of a deal for you. It’s not your husband.

“It’s…Against the law,” I declared throwing down my trump card.

HungryMan grinned at me as he pulled out the laptop and looked it up. Even the State of Minnesota wouldn’t back me up. Apparently, it’s not against the law to ride unrestrained in a van if there isn’t enough seatbelts to go around.

Twenty-four hours later, I was buckled in along with ever other female in our entourage, while my six-foot-two husband was making a bed for himself in the narrow passage from the backseat bench to the front center console.

For the next three hours he played steward passing out pretzels and juice boxes while adjusting air vents and fluffing pillows, all the while ignoring the frequent gasps and sighs from the front right corner of the van.

We all arrived at our destination with the proper number of appendages, much to the delight of HungryMan. Though my neck remained locked and in the upright position for the remainder of the night.

Now I know that HungryMan is crazy, which was confirmed the next morning when he announced that he wanted to swing tarzan-style thirty feet from the second story deck into the lake.

The lake that is only about three feet deep at the beginning of the dock.

And Heather, as the daughter of the javalina hunter, has a high tolerance for risk, but come on, there has to be one sane person in my family. Not one person at the cabin was the least bit surprised or even concerned that HungryMan had traveled unbuckled across two states. Not one.

Seriously people, did anyone out there see the crash test dummies? Am I the only one that believes in seatbelts?

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Remember when little Rapunzel was locked in the bathroom tower?

Thankfully, the Great Knight was on hand to scale the ladder and rescue the frightened princess.

Today, the nefarious bathroom captured another young victim and there was no Great Knight or even a ladder to help the poor, distressed child.

So, I did what any good mama would do when a child is locked in her bathroom, I slipped a fruit strip under the door and dialed, “911.”

“911, emergency services, what is your emergency?”

“Um, there’s a little girl locked in my bathroom and she can’t turn the lock to get out.”


“The bathroom’s on the second floor and there is no way to get the door open from the outside. My daughter locked herself in there before and my husband had to climb a ladder up to the window to get her out.”

“This has happened before?”

“Yes. Um, yeah. I always tell children not to lock the door, because it is so hard to unlock. My cousin’s daughters are visiting and I must have forgotten to tell her.”

“So she’s locked in the bathroom?”

“Yes. I was wondering if maybe the fire department could bring their ladder here and get her out.”

“You need the fire rescuer to climb up to your bathroom to rescue the child?”


Surely, I’m not the only one that read stories about how firemen rescued cats out of trees. And if they can employ their ladders for cats in trees, it can’t be too far a stretch for them to aim that ladder at a window barring in a scared little girl.

Sure enough, the fire truck came and in just enough time for me to tuck away clutter, find my camera and hide our defective smoke detector. We are a safety first family.

Six fire fighters rushed up my stairs to assess the situation. They found one crying girl squarely locked in a bathroom and three other little girls coloring notes to slip under the door to her.

“Her name is Cate!” I yelled at them as they scampered back down the stairs to retrieve their ladder.

How many fire fighters does it take to climb a ladder?


Three to hold it and one to climb it.

Apparently they take safety a bit more seriously than HungryMan.

Which is probably why that lock is still on our door.

Safety aside, HungryMan and his fire fighter counterpart have the same through-the-window technique.

That’s if you don’t count the flip-flops.

“Hi Cate,” yelled the brave fire fighter. “I’m coming in this window and then I’m going to unlock the door for you.”

Hurray for the hero! She rescued a child and she didn’t even have to carry an ax or hose. Or face a cat with claws.

After little Cate was safe in her mama’s arms, Ava dispensed suckers to celebrate.

The same suckers that were thrown to her from a fire truck during a parade in front of our house.

Because everything in my home must have a poetic end.

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Here is some solid evidence that Ava’s daddy was indeed a part of the fairy festivities. He took the afternoon off a work so he could watch his little lady blow our four candles on a flower cake and run around in pink tulle and glitter wings.

He didn’t make it into the little birthday story as the Fairy Good Father and or the Fairy Daddy didn’t have quite have the right ring to it. To be sure, he was quite adamant that he was not be called anything with fairy attached to it.

I can respect that.

As the absolutely-not-a-winged-creature-from-the-forest, he was responsible for all the amazing photographs (and video–he’s a camera man extraordinaire).

He was also responsible for making the fairies fly.

For weeks, I heard many variations of this question: “Mama, when I’m at my party with my big purple wings, will I fly?”

“Only if there is a very mighty wind,” I would reply.

Last Friday, that mighty wind was her daddy.

Hold on tight baby girl, if there was ever a daddy who could help a little girl soar it is this one.

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On Tuesday night after my long day on set I put my weary, happy self to bed. Right as my dreams were beginning to wisp over eyes, I was startled by a great deal of moaning in the kitchen.

Hungryman: Oh man, I’m starving. I need a hamburger. Ahh, I’m sooo hungry. [Opens and closes several cupboard doors.] I need a hamburger! What am I gonna eat? [Opens refrigerator]. Ah, sweet. Rach! Rach! There’s leftover Chipotle in here. Is it yours? Can I eat it?

Me: Ah, we had Chipotle for lunch. It’s not mine. There should be a name on it.

Hungryman: [runs into bedroom and flips on bedside lamp]

Me: Dude!

Hungryman: Whose is this?

Me: Read it. It’s says “Jeremy.” It was Jeremy’s.

Hungryman: He was the sound guy?

Me: Yeah.

Hungryman: Hmmm. [walks back to the kitchen] Ah man, I’m so hungry. [Opens the refrigerator] Rach! Rach! Nica left a whole taco! [Opens microwave] Ah Rach!! [Puts it in microwave] It’s loaded. [Starts microwave] It’s huge. [Takes it out of microwave and carries hot taco to bedroom] Should I eat it?

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The following contains photographs of a potentially disturbing nature. Please be assured that no small children were seriously harmed during the taking of these photographs.

Here is HungryMan doing his pre-sledding warm-up, primarily comprised of decapitating today’s snowman.


Once properly stretched, he loaded the family in our car and drove to the hill of his sledding legends.


“Was this your hill when you were little, Daddy”

“Yes, but I think it was bigger back then.”


“What are you doing Daddy?”

“Well little girl, I’m turning this sledding hill up to eleven.”

After a few short runs, HungryMan grew dissatisfied with the smooth flight down the hill. Determined to give Ava the experience that he remembered, HungryMan fortified the sledding hill with a ski jump.


“Whoopeee! Yes. Yes. Yes!”


“Again! We gotta do that again!”

Nate is a firm believer in what doesn’t kill you is fun.


“But Daddy, is it safe?”

“No it’s not safe, it’s dangerous!”


“Hang on Ava!”


“This. Is. Awesome!”


Whoopsie daisies”



“We’re still good.”

Last time I checked “Stop, Drop, and Roll” did not involve snow or MY three-year-old.


“Oh sweetie, did you get some snow in your face?”

It’s kind of like the log ride minus the log and safety features. Apparently HungryMan is looking for a new title, how about DangerMan?

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