Hell is indeed freezing over

snow flake

Parents from the Midwest to the East Coast are currently at the threshold of hell.

And it’s all thanks to Mother Nature and Old Man Winter. I think they are having one hell of a fight over something because according to Time Magazine, a “BOMB CYCLONE” has formed off the East Cast that “could bring the coldest temperatures in 100 years.”

According to the article, a bomb cyclone brews over the water where drops in barometric pressure can make it an EXTRA forceful weather event. The article also noted the “storm” could trap the “bone-chilling cold” and put the United States in a deep freeze over the Atlantic coastline.

Really, all they needed to say was “Hell is Close to Freezing Over – Be Prepared/Stock Up on Alcohol and Milk.”

But, meteorologists actually gave this hell-freezing-over a name – “Winter Storm Grayson.”

I used to like the name Grayson, until about two seconds ago.

Grayson has forced schools to close; flights to be either delayed or canceled; and amusement parks in Florida to close.

It’s actually SNOWING in Florida, Georgia and South Carolina. It hasn’t snowed in those states in nearly 30 years! Kids who have never seen snow are now making snow angels and having snow ball fights according to Twitter.

Do you know what kids in Ohio are doing today? Well, for starters, they are not in school. Nearly 100 schools have been closed in Northeast Ohio alone.

And while some parents are absolutely thrilled with the extended winter break, I am “this close” to hiding in a closet with my Kindle and “share-size” bag of Skittles that I found in my pantry. I don’t even care how long they have been there because as the day goes on, I plan on dropping a few into a wine glass to give my Pinot Grigio an extra KICK.

The last time my kids stepped foot inside a classroom was Dec. 20. It’s now Jan. 4. You do the math.

All I know, it feels like it has been forever-and-a-day since they have opened a text book.

Currently, my near 15-year-old is still sleeping; and he’ll be that way until I go into his room, turn on the light and unleash the hounds known as the twins in his room. The twins are playing a new version of “hide-and-seek” using their cell phones. They are using the GPS-type function to locate each other within the 2,400-square-foot house that as the week has dragged on really feels like a 400-square-foot studio apartment. The good news, we have already taken down Christmas inside the house (so, it’s slightly less cluttered), but as a friend of mine said, taking down the lights and decorations outside, well, that probably won’t be happening until JUNE at this rate.

And to everyone telling me to “take them someplace FUN” – It’s OHIO. There is nothing to do here. And even if I opted to take them to one of those indoor trampoline parks, I am THAT mother who will indeed turn into a HELICOPTER PARENT because I can honestly close my eyes and visualize one of my kids landing on a trampoline the wrong way and breaking an arm or a leg. Which would end up costing me an arm and a leg at the ER. I don’t even watch when my kids ride bikes. I am that crazy – but at least I can admit it.

And I can’t send them outside because it’s so damn cold that their snot would freeze inside their nose. (That was my husband’s idea – and he also wanted them to shovel and chisel the driveway, but only if I put the space heater on in the garage where they could go and warm their hands when needed. Yeah, OK … that sounds like a wonderful idea!)

Sure, I could take them to see a movie, but we can do that here IN the house and save myself $50 in snack food money. Plus, I also need gas in my van and there is no way in hell I am standing at the pump to even insert my credit card into the machine, let alone pump the gas.

So, I’m at a stand-still … a holding-pattern if you will … of just sitting in my house while looking out my frosted-over windows at hell literally freezing over outside.




Pink eye sucks

“Hello Stan …” I yelled from the kitchen, down the hall to my son going to the bathroom. “How did you sleep?”

“Well, I think I have some pink eye …” he said from the crapper.


That is my new phrase – “Everything is AWESOME,” followed by, “Fuck me.”

I get that of all the shit the kids can bring home from school, pink eye is the “best of the bunch” – at least it’s not lice, the flu or some other funky communicable disease. (However, my 40-year-old HUSBAND “caught” pink eye LAST WEEK, so this HAS to be his fault, right?)

But pink eye is just enough of a disease to warrant staying home from school.

He’s watching TV now, or what he can see through his crusted-over eyes … and I am here being a good mom, blogging about his crusty eyes.

We are both winners.

Back when I was younger, my parents had to deal with chicken pox. I was a good girl though … I didn’t get that childhood illness till I was 15. BOOM … I saved them a lot of stress – no one had to stay home with me. They just gave me a tub of ice cream and left me at home with the TV and my homework.

Wait, there’s a good story behind the chicken pox …

After I reached third grade and didn’t get them, my parents would purposely send me over to homes where kids actually had chicken pox in the hope I would get them. It never happened until my younger brother got them.

The first pox I noticed was on my stomach … oh, wait, I wasn’t even in the same state at the time as my parents. No, this is my “That one time, AT BAND …” story. I was with the band, in Florida … at Disney – the most MAGICAL PLACE ON EARTH (my ass) …

The 24-hour BUS ride BACK to Ohio was the worst time of my life.

They quarantined me on the bus where everyone had already had the virus. There I sat, right by the bus driver … and clipped my nails off (snip, snip, snip) and I rubbed calamine lotion all over my body.

I was every 15-year-old boys’ DREAMGIRL.

And then I missed a week of school … only to go back with scabbed-over pox all over my face. I was working that shit. The dates just rolled in after that, I couldn’t even keep up!

Anyways, back to my kid … since he’s a twin, there’s a 99 percent chance that when his sister wakes up tomorrow morning, she too will have “some pink eye.” I wonder if I could bribe the pediatrician into giving me two scripts for the same meds … he has to see this coming …

About the author:

Melissa Linebrink is a reporter/bi-monthly columnist for “The Mommy Wars” printed in The Chronicle-Telegram. She has been featured as a blogger on the Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop site, www.humorwriters.org. She also writes, edits and manages her blog, https://parenthoodthenewcrazytrain.com/. She can be reached at mlinebrink@yahoo.com.

‘Let It Go’ – a lesson for all of us

“Let it go … Let it go … Can’t hold it back anymore. Let it go … Let it go …” is the refrain of Disney’s “Frozen” theme song.

“Don’t let them in, don’t let them see. Be the good girl you always have to be.”

I think at some time or another in our lives, we have all felt this way.

To hide the true person we are for fear of showing others who we really are – or who we can be.

But instead of merely putting on magical gloves to hide our true selves, we become a one-person “show.”

For me, that time was in high school.

Puberty is such a difficult time and no one knows that better than those of who have survived it.

If you were pretty, popular, smart, athletic or simply, “cool” in high school, chances are, you thrived for those four years.

But, if you were more like me – a wallflower – high school probably dragged on – and on and on. And, if you were like me, your diary tells the true tale of, “I CANNOT WAIT TO LEAVE HOME AND GO TO COLLEGE!”

In high school, if you weren’t part of the “in-crowd” you were left out – perhaps trying and clawing your way to get IN the in-crowd.

Don’t get me wrong, I tried to fit in. I tried to belong. But honestly, it was exhausting.

There was no way I was going to attempt to do a back-flip in an effort to be a cheerleader. You are either flexible or not. You can’t go both ways.

There was no way any amount of extra practice with my clarinet was going to bring me up to “first chair.” A little secret … I only memorized the music and once that song was over for the year, I think I literally felt it leaving my brain, as if to say, “I am SO DONE with that piece … let’s make room for more you won’t ever care about shall we!?”

There was no amount of studying that was going to be put me on the “4.0 honor roll” list. It took everything in me to make it into National Honor Society, and I succeeded. But no, I was never going to be the valedictorian or salutatorian. Or any other “torian” for that matter.

The only thing I had going for me was my ability to write … and even that I didn’t put to good use because I didn’t feel worthy of it. Sure, I held the title of “editor” but I had no idea what that meant for a school newspaper. While everyone else on my “staff” bee-bopped around writing the gossip columns or the advice columns, I was busy trying to edit all of their stuff. The one column I did write I did “anonymously” and it garnered a lot of attention. I should have just slapped my name on it like I do with everything now.

But back then, I didn’t know how to “Let it Go” because I was still holding on for dear life.

The thing is, those closest to me in high school know the real Melissa.

And those I met in college met the Melissa I was meant to be in high school.

And for those who are meeting me now … well, just LET IT GO! I have! Life is too complicated to live in a perfect box set by society’s standards.

Disney ups prices, tears down dreams (but not mine)

Disney 1993
Disney 1993
The “Wonderful World of Disney” – or in this case, not so much the world, but the company’s top executives, recently made the decision to increase the cost of an adult ticket to $92. The cost of a child’s ticket (ages 2 and UP) are now $87.
Now, we all know I am not a mathematician, but even I can round up to come up with the number of roughly $400 for a family of four to walk through the gates and enter “The Most Magical Place on Earth.”
Do the executives think we all have magical money trees growing in our backyards too? The last time I ventured out back to my lot, I only saw cottonwood trees and the only things blowing from them were the cottonwood puffs, which in turn made my eyes itch and water.
Now it seems as if the cost of tickets to Disney is making parents eyes water with tears of frustration.
I guess I am part of the minority when I say “I have zero desire to take my children to the most magical place on Earth.”
To me, walking around with a billion other people, standing in line to ride rides that are less than 2 minutes long and buying food that eats up an entire paycheck, is not what I have in mind when it comes to “family time” on vacation.
Then again, I should probably mention I have already been to Disney in Florida when I was in band (cue, remember that one time, at band camp …) as a freshman in high school.
Here’s what I remember about my “wonderful trip to Disney …” (and yes, I know, I have these “GREAT” memories, so don’t tell me, “At least you have those memories Melissa!” because I know I have them as they are embedded in my mind for all eternity.)
1. We ate dinner at some ancient place while we watched men on horses battle. We were served a small chicken – sans silverware – because they did not use utensils back in time. It was gross.
2. I got lost with Allison Beerbower, who then tripped over a fence, as we were trying to make our way back to find our band members.
3. I got “felt up” by a “duck” (man in costume) when we were taking photos with the duck. Pervert!
4. Epcot Center was boring.
5. I got the chicken pox on the last day of our trip. I rode nearly 24 hours on a bus back home, clipping my nails and applying calamine lotion all over my body. Let’s all keep in mind I was 15 years old, so yes, you must feel bad for me when reading this … high school. Freshman. Chicken pox.
So, back to Disney folks raising the cost to get it … it’s a screw job – plain and simple. If they want people to meet Mickey Mouse and the rest of the Disney gang, they are going to have to take a long look at the people who WANT to visit. Most of them do not have $400 sitting around a drawer at home. Most of them do not have enough money to get them through a week of food at their own home, let alone pay the cost of meals at Disney.
Plain and simple – money does NOT grow on trees in the United States of America.
But maybe it does grow on trees at the “Wonderful World of Disney?”