The Ultimate Man Room

As a man, I think its our calling to have a Man Room. Our Dungeon, our Cave, our Layer… however you want to name it. We should have one… Then you get married, then you have some kids… and your man room gets invaded.

I don’t know if its a skirmish, a battle or a war… but it’s one that all men need to defend.

I am losing.

My man room has the necessities… First, its in my basement, it has a nice big tv, Fios, a recliner, a fridge (in the other room)… and … wait…. Barbies, dolls, little plastic pretend food… etc. Its become a modified Disney Store… (Sigh)

As I am sitting in my Man Room, typing this up… I can not help but think of the best Man Room I ever had the honor or sitting in or hiding in… depends on how you look at it…

My Grand-Dads.

It was his garage. It wasn’t huge but it had EVERYTHING a man would need. It had his work bench, a fridge, a freezer, a Recliner, 13″ Magnavox (I think everyone in my family had one, I know we had at least 4) a furnace that would run you out of the garage because it put out so much heat…and his Plymouth Acclaim (at least thats what I think it was called)…

I remember as a kid, all my Moms side of the family would go to Grandma and Grand-Dads and some close family friends would show up. All the kids running around a small house, carrying on, being kids. Kids would have to eat on the steps, the same steps where we would try to build the biggest card tower using grandmas good playing cards. With all the kids running around…  I can not help but get stressed out just thinking about how our Dads felt… oooh the pandemonium…

It wasn’t until I got older it hit me… soooo thats why all the Dads went into the garage…. to get a way :-) Grand-Dad would have the fridge stocked with beer for my Dad, a Whiskey for my Uncle, VO for Grand-Dad, cigarettes for whom ever needed them, and an ashtray. (the ugly orange in a weird shape, my family members would know what I am talking about)…oh and lets not forget about the intercom… God forbid you had to walk 20ft to ask a question…but it was perfect… (My intercom is my wife opening the basement door and yelling down the question or sending one of the kids down to ask the question)

So as I got older, drinking age I guess, I was able to go and stay in garage and truly enjoy the garage. There was no ceremony to be accepted.  You just hung out. Watch football, or Wheel of Fortune and talked about the town, the changes, or “You remember So n So, Yeah, Well How the hell are they doing??” sort of talk. Those cousins of mine men or women that liked to enjoy their cig or coors, were able to do so too. The women would be in the house talking about women things, and laughing hysterically… Grandma would never ever tell me the jokes… Usually the jokes came from Grandma and my Moms closest friend Kay….

Those are just some random memories that I have of Grand-Dad’s garage.

We moved around a few times, but really wish I lived back there, so I could see my Grandma and Grand-Dad more often… but they both have passed, but are living in the ultimate man room…

Around the holidays, this is what I remember most….Family, Food, Christmas, and…

Grand-Dads Garage….

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The Sunday Ache 12-23-12

So I know I am doing this on Monday… Why? Well, I had no ache in my stomach on Sunday Evening. … I felt great. So great I had totally forgotten about doing my Sunday Ache post. I am off for the next 9 days… So I have no ache in my stomach…

My Sunday was  pretty easy. Football, Food, and Family. My teams won… Bears, Ravens, and Skins. I lost my Fantasy Football Championship…oh well… I was the underdog….

Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

Paying It Forward

Toys 'R' Us

Toys ‘R’ Us (Photo credit: Jeffery Simpson)

I have experienced one of the nicest, kindest gesture I may have ever seen. There is a person at our church who wants to remain anonymous, decided to give some of our little kids in our Sunday School $25 gift cards to Toys R Us and Target.

Some?? How many is some? Well…almost 70. Thats right, 70 gift cards split between Target and Toys R Us…. and thats not all…. The church school director informed us that there were several Giant (local grocery chain) gift cards. I do not know the dollar amount of those gift cards. I know is that they were “extremely” generous.

We received our gift cards in the mail. The gift cards were accompanied by a nice letter explaining there was no obligation to pay if forward. But if we did pay it forward, the church wanted to know what we did…

So what did we do?

I loaded up my two kids, and my Toys R Us Coupons and we went to Toys R US in Annapolis… during the Christmas madness… YUP… I knew what I was walking into….and my youngest was already cranky… But nonetheless … off we went…

My girls love Barbies… L-O-V-E Barbies. So I explained to my oldest that we were trying to get the most out of our money, so lets get the Barbies that were on sale. I am trying to turn her into my ‘lil bargain shopper. She found some Barbies that were $40. So she’s a beginner on the bargain hunting. So I explained in more detail that we were wanting to find the cheaper Barbies….

When it was all said in done, coupons used, gift cards redeemed, and I chipped in too… we had 6 Barbies, and 12 Barbie outfits. We gave all these Barbies to my Wife’s school. Their school adopted a couple families that were not having a christmas. Some bought food for Christmas dinner, toys and clothes for kids…

It doesn’t stop there. We discussed what we were doing to some of our closest friends. They decided to do the same thing as us. When it was all said and done, my wife had a good load of toys to take to her school for these kids that would not have had a nice Christmas, or a Christmas at all.

I wasn’t really looking forward to go to Toys R Us a few days before Christmas. Who would? Doing this with my oldest and explaining the importance of paying it forward to my her really made it all worth while.  She got it. She wanted to make sure we got the Barbies that she thought the kids would play with. It was awesome!

 

On a side note…While at Toys r Us,  I got my youngest a “I can Be…a President Barbie” Ava picked out the Dark Haired Barbie (I have no freaking clue what her real name is… they ALL are Barbie aren’t they??) …. So she decided to change her name to Sarah. Yup… Sarah…

So here we are, a dark haired President Barbie with a new name of Sarah. So I did what any other Dad would have done… I taught Ava to have her Barbie/Sarah say ” I can see Russia from my house” and have her do some “fancy pageant walking” …. I am bad. I couldn’t help it..

 

Did you pay anything forward? Did you donate to Toys for Tots?