You’re shacked up where?


Hi ladies and gentlemen, it’s The Calibamamom, coming to you LIVE from…

a hospital bed!! 

It’s true. My colon got angry at me, decided I needed a vacation, and promptly made me sick. REALLY sick. So my travel agent  doctor booked me a nice room at a nearby hospital for a few days . Since my only connection to the outside world at the moment  is my laptop, and I’m hopped up on pain killers and antibiotics, I thought it might be fun to highlight some of the best things about being here. I mean, overall it sucks, but there are some advantages (wink, wink). Especially if you are a sleep-deprived, SAHM to 3 Beans, a dog, and 3 lizards. Oh, and wifey to The Man.

Here’s my Top 5….

1. Ass-baring, one size fits none, gowns.  Talk about a fashion statement!  They snap at the shoulders, and tie in the back. However, even if you connect all the ties and snaps in the right places, chances are your ass will still be hanging out. Which is convenient if your nurse happens to be a little moody. You can just roll over and tell her to kiss it! Oh, and don’t get me started on the weird little pictures/icons printed on the fabric. I mean where do they find this stuff?

2. People at my beck and call…with the push of a button. So far, all of my nurses have been awesome. Although it would be way cooler if they were all insanely gorgeous, male models who walked around in nothing but scrub pants. But I suspect that might slow the healing process. People would be having heart attacks and strokes left and right, in an effort to extend their stays. I might be inclined to fake a coma myself.

3. Jello. Red is the best flavor in my opinion, but here they alternate colors/flavors. So far I’ve had red, green and orange. Just waiting for the yellow, blue and purple to show up so I can give ’em a gold star for supporting The Rainbow. Oh, and they give you a free pass to have as much as you want, especially if you are on that marvelous ‘clear liquid’ diet (see photo below). If only they knew how to make the jello “electric”. Perhaps I should give them the recipe. That would be super fun, right?

Yummy, huh?

Yummy, huh?

4. IV pain meds every 3 hours…Woo-hoo!!! Need I say more? If you want to fly high, and be pain-free–or at least not give a shit that you are in pain–the hospital is THE place to be. Of course if you are like me, and allergic to all the really good stuff, it’s always fun to watch the doctor try to figure out what to give you. Every time I’ve been in the hospital could have been filmed as an episode of  ‘Mysteries in the ER’. True story.

5.  Rabbit-turd ice. You know what I’m talking about right? The ice that’s so fun to crunch, and is only available in hospitals and select fast food places like Sonic Burger (FYI…they sell it in bags). Give me a bucket of that ice, and I won’t bother you for hours. I once checked into buying one of those ice machines for my house, but it turns out they are pretty expensive. Who knew?

Anyway, I’m here for a few days, so this probably won’t be my last post from the M*A*S*H unit, so stay tuned!!

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I’m officially 20 days late….

….announcing that I’m a PUBLISHED AUTHOR folks.

Isn't it pretty?

Isn’t it pretty?

What? You thought I was late? As in preggo? BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.NO. That ship has officially  docked sunk. Unless God suddenly decides he needs another earthly being to bear offspring. And then I will still be on my knees praying he doesn’t like petite women, brunettes, moms who blog and swear, women who wear cowboy boots or females named Nancy. You get the point.

Anyway, what I’m actually talking about is my contribution to the ridiculously funny collection of stories, titled Parenting Gag Reel: Hilarious Writes and Wrongs, Take 26  published by Life Well Blogged. The book was released on on April 2nd, which was the official day I became a contributing author to an E-book, hence the 20 days late reference. In case you’ve lost your calendar wits…today is April 22nd 🙂 But…the fantastic duo of Abbey Fatica and  Monica Merrill-Mylet took it one step further…and the book is now available in PAPERBACK at CreateSpace  (hint, hint…I can autograph those puppies for ya!)  So, go there now and buy one. I’m begging. Pretty please…with some homemade, iron-skillet baked, cornbread on top? We’ll work out the logistics of cornbread delivery & autographing later. Promise.  

Oh, and the BEST part is.…a portion of the proceeds from the sales of Parenting Gag Reel will benefit Autism Speaks, an amazing charity helping children and families dealing with autism everyday. And if there is one thing y’all know about me…I am all about helping others. It is one of my callings in life, I believe. Besides making people laugh, and feel better about their own parenting skills by injecting humor into the obvious, epic failures in my repertoire.

Last but not least….One of the other contributors, the wonderful Kristi from reached out to the rest of us contributors with a very personal plea in hopes for the successful sale of the book. I would like to pass that along now:

It’s so exciting to see people talking about this hilarious book, isn’t it?  Abbey has been kind enough to offer to donate a portion of the proceeds of each book sold to a fundraiser that we’re doing for my son’s Preschool Autism Class.  Other parents and I have been searching for ways to help my son and his classmates.  Through our research, we’ve learned that iPads significantly help children on the autism spectrum learn how to learn and even communicate.  

We’re holding a multi-family garage sale at the end of April and all proceeds will go toward the purchase of an iPad (or, if we get enough, 2 iPads as there are 2 PAC classrooms).  With Abbey’s help, and yours, maybe we’ll be able to get a little closer to our goal.  In order to get credit for the sale, people will have to purchase the book through the following link or through my site:

Thank you so much!

So my desire for you to buy the book because I’m a contributor, and there’s a really funny story about Sweet Pea peeing in public in there, actually pales in comparison to my wish that you buy it to help Kristi’s precious son. At this point, I’m just honored to have been chosen as a contributing author!
BTW…I’m featured in Chapter….well, I guess you’ll
just have to buy it I guess, won’t you? 
Once you do, please share the news with friends via FB and Twitter, read/rate reviews —4 or 5 stars are preferred, but don’t lie–
and leave one of your own about what you thought on Amazon!
Oh…and FYI–glowing reviews help boost sales if you were


***Or, you could always hop over to my Facebook page“Like” it (if you haven’t already) and leave a comment THERE with the name of the Bean who is featured in the essay published in the book. You see, I have 5 copies of the Ebook to GIVE AWAY, and I’d love for you to enter the contest. Winner will be chosen at random, and notified via email, after the contest closes on April 30th***

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A Post-holiday vacation….in all it’s GLORY

As soon as the topic for this week’s Theme Thursday was decided upon and announced, as “My Biggest Vacation Disaster” I immediately knew the story I wanted to share with y’all. It’s an adventure straight out of National Lampoon’s Vacation franchise. That is, if one of their movies was set on a Carnival Cruise ship.

I only wish it had been a trip I TOOK. 

No, I didn’t cheat, and fabricate a story about a disastrous vacation with my family. I didn’t have to. My niece, Ryan Anderson,** and her husband actually had one worthy of an award, and she agreed to let me share it. I mean, why wouldn’t she? After it happened, she sent the following letter to American Express, and the Director of Public Relations called her on the phone, laughing hysterically, saying that everyone in the office now had a copy on their desk and nobody could get any work done because they were all giggling breathlessly. At the end of the phone call, they were discussing the possibility of making it into a commercial. Seriously.  Intrigued? Read on….

Dear American Express, 

Sitting around the house late one night after Christmas, my husband Hank and I, childless and full of adventure, poured some cocktails and spontaneously decided to take a Carnival Cruise over New Years. He spent the next hour or so online looking for an available cabin, and I truly believe we booked the last one….in the world. We rented a car that Friday morning, and headed down to Cape Canaveral, Florida, where we stayed the night at the Radisson Hotel. We boarded the cruise ship Glory the following Saturday morning. Our itinerary was 2 days at sea, a day in Cozumel (boring), a day in Belize City (not what I had expected), a day in Costa Maya (LOVED IT), then on to Nassau, Bahamas after a couple of days at sea.  We arrived at the port in Nassau at about 10:00 a.m. The night before, Hank read the daily schedule for the next day, and saw that we were due to leave Nassau at 16:00 hours, giving us plenty of time to enjoy the day before we got back on the ship. So, excited about Nassau, we disembarked in our bathing suits (mine was a skimpy little two piece thing), grabbed a taxi, and headed over to the Atlantis Resort where we purchased a day pass and spent the day relaxing on the beach. It was absolutely beautiful!!! The water was so clear, and the waves were perfect!!! After we got tired of the beach, we headed back to the main part of the resort, toured the stunning aquariums, then walked outside to shop some more and check out all the beautiful yachts docked at the piers. It was truly an awesome day. Around 3 p.m., we decided to head back to the ship so we could leisurely check back in before everyone else, pack, and get ready to enjoy the last night of our vacation. On the way back, we took a wonderful water ferry taxi, then walked through the local craft markets at the dock where I purchased a very cool pair of leather handmade flip-flops. Still can’t wait to wear them!!!

Tired, sandy and a little burnt, we left the craft market and walked towards the Glory. All of the big ships were there as well, so I asked Hank if he would take my picture with all the cruise ships behind me, before we boarded. He said yes, of course, so I immediately tried to pump up my wet hair and make myself look cute for the picture. I was standing there smiling with my head and hip slightly cocked to one side, like the ultimate dork tourist in my skimpy bikini, posing for my picture…Hank raised the camera to his face…I give him a big smile…and then, I watched all the color slowly drain out of his face. I was still smiling (my cheeks were beginning to quiver) as he slowly lowered the camera back down. With jaws dropped, he pointed to our ship behind me and in a weak voice Hank said…”Baby! The boat is moving! Our ship is leaving the port!”

Irritated at his lame attempt at humor I rolled my eyes, exercised my cheeks for another smile and reposed for the picture because I didn’t believe him….for those of you who know us really well, you know that Hank messes with me all the time. He is the ultimate smart ass.

I decided to give him what he wanted….you know, haha, joke’s on me, and turned around. My jaw dropped too….especially when I looked up to the top of the ship and saw everyone on the deck yelling and waving good-bye to Nassau.

With arms flailing we start running towards the ship like idiots, to no avail. It wasn’t stopping…I whipped out the camera and videotaped our ship sailing off into the sunset while we ran at break neck speed to another Carnival ship in port for help. They basically, in a short direct way let us know that we were S.O.L. Yes, my friends, we “missed the boat”. We were stranded in the Bahamas in wet bathing suits watching our ship sail off without us.

Ok, so, we are standing there speechless and helpless on the pier of a foreign country. Our wallets are on board, cell phone, keys, clothes…EVERYTHING, except thank God, our passports and our American Express card. Yep, that’s it…that’s all we had besides our camera. After making a second attempt to try to recompose ourselves in front of all the tourists who had now caught onto what had just happened to us, we ran back to the security station and contacted the ministry of tourism, with the hope of maybe getting ferried out the Glory. No such luck…the ship could not be stopped.

Ok, so, let’s back up to the day before (well, really the night before….in the casino on the ship…after cocktails…), Hank saw on the daily schedule that we were scheduled to leave Nassau the next day at 16:00 hours, which, of course, is 4pm….apparently, the “six” in “sixteen” stuck in his head, so all day long we thought the ship was leaving at 6:00. Yes, I just threw my husband under the bus.

We left the port authorities and grabbed a taxi after being assured that we could fly back to Cape Canaveral within the next hour, then get back on the ship the next morning to retrieve our belongings. Oh, if it had only been that easy!

We finally arrived at the Nassau Airport, and booked the last flight (7:30pm) to Orlando through BAHAMA AIR…ok, who has even heard of this airline? My thoughts exactly! We purchased the tickets, and proceeded through the airport to American customs. Of course, everyone in front of us have luggage, bags, purses, cute little souvenirs from their vacation in Nassau….Us? Nothing. We stepped up to our customs booth, and the officer slowly looked us over, cleared his throat and finally asks, “Uhmm, where are your bags? And how long have you been in the country?”
Hank and I looked at each other, looked back at him and said, “Everything we own is on the Carnival Glory, and we have been here for 6 hours.” He laughed out loud at us…I mean, who wouldn’t? Here we are getting ready to board a flight in semi-wet bathing suits, our legs and feet still have sand from the beach all over them, we have no luggage, and at this point we are beginning to smell.

Then, if that’s not enough, they walk us out onto the tarmac up to a little prop plane! At this point, I was scared to death and freezing my butt off. The flight didn’t even have beverages. I told the attendant that I was thirsty and she went to the bathroom and handed me a cup of tap water. Hank and I spent the entire flight huddled up together to fight off hypothermia. At every bump and drop in the air we professed our love for each other, wondering if it was our last moment together on Earth.

Thank God, we made it back to the States alive. We left the airport after I hurriedly purchased a sweat shirt and hailed a taxi back to Cape Canaveral to the Radisson hotel, the same hotel we stayed at the night before we departed. The taxi ride cost $100….we didn’t care, we just needed sleep, food, and warmth. Oh, and by the way, let me give you a visual of what I looked like. By this time, my inner thighs were so chaffed from the salt water and running around Nassau in a wet bathing suit, that I thought they were going to bleed, so I am gingerly walking around like I rode a bull for 8 hours, with my legs spread apart so my thighs don’t rub together. It wasn’t pretty and it hurt like hell. Also, to add to the visual, I have really curly frizzy hair that must be maintained with products and a hairdryer to look presentable. Mix that hair with sand, salt water, and give it a windblown effect…and you can imagine what I looked like. I was a dead ringer for the Bride of Frankenstein. My lips were also burnt and slightly peeled back, drawn taut from dried salt that I got tired of licking at some point on the plane.

We finally got to the hotel. Ahhhh, sweet peace. The first thing I did was run a hot bath while Hank went to the front lobby to get glasses and any free toiletries the hotel could offer. In the meantime, while soaking my thighs in hot water, I picked up the phone and tried to dial 411 to get my mother’s new phone number because she had just moved. I am no good with numbers, and I don’t have to be since all the numbers are programmed into my cell phone. HA! Where is the cell phone? Exactly…so, I dial 9 to get an outside line, then 411 for information….Can you imagine what happened next?

“911, what is your emergency?” I was horrified and apologized for inconveniencing them, that I just dialed the wrong number (apparently my finger didn’t push the 4 down all the way). I hang up, and completely exhausted, just give up and sink down into the tub. Hank comes back and I told him about the phone call and asked him if he would get Mom’s number for me. He did. 5 minutes later, the Brevard County police show up banging on the hotel door with flashlights. Hank goes to the door, opens it to find 2 officers on either side of the door with their hands on their guns. They weren’t playing around either. He assures them it was a mistake, but they insist on seeing me to make sure that I am not a bloodied and bruised up wife. So, there I am in the bath tub, trying to keep my boobs under the water line with one hand and the other hand struggling to cover up my hoo-hoo with any soap suds floating around in the water while they looked me over. My God….did it end there?


We finished off the night with some much-needed cocktails, and, naked from lack of clean dry clothing, ate hot wings delivered by a local restaurant who took American Express. Outside, our rental car sat gleaming in the moonlight, locked, in the weekly paid for parking lot with things we could have used, LIKE CLOTHES….but, oh yeah, the keys were on the  ship.

We woke up hours later, took a taxi to the port, and what do you know? Security would not allow us back on the ship to get our things. We had to sit on a metal rod bench (that must have been constructed by the same companies who make the furnishings for death row cells) still in our bathing suits, with minimal clothing, from 7:30am to 10:30am until the ship’s purser finally brought our things to us, which had been METICULOUSLY packed and inventoried on sheets of paper. On the papers each item was listed as “found” and then “placed” wherever, in whatever bag they had chosen. I mean, seriously…these people were thorough!  For example, I had a partly used roll of stamps in my purse, and whoever the unfortunate soul was who had the task of packing our things, actually had to count out each stamp and inventory how many= 92…seriously, you should see the inventory papers. EVERY single item that was in our room was listed, which we had to go over one by one with the purser so he could mark it off the list. With my heart pounding and my face full of shame, I silently poured over the contents until I finally found what I was looking for. There it was, in all its glory, my hot pink dildo. I have never been so embarrassed in my entire life. With impressive professionalism, he quickly checked it off after I nodded my head and moved on to the next item, which was not as bad but I am sure caught them by surprise…the two boxes of “decorative teeth” with fake diamonds embedded in them. Yes, the grills…the ones I had laughed so hard about that Christmas as I stood in line at the mall for an hour waiting to purchase them for our stockings. We actually wore them one night to the disco on the ship, and no doubt laughed by ourselves at how funny we were as we tried to dance to rap music.

So, we finally got our belongings, took a taxi back to the Radisson so we could load up our rental car and get the hell out of Brevard County, and I will be DAMNED….at some point while we were on the cruise, a drunken guest of the hotel had vomited all over the passenger door handle and door. It was pink and chunky and absolutely just not fair! The hot Florida sun had hardened it, and I couldn’t open the car door without tissues…it was beyond disgusting.

So, there you have it. The story is priceless, and I can’t believe all of it happened in less than 24 hours.  I simply had to share it, because if we hadn’t had our American Express card with us, I can’t fathom how horrible this experience could have been. Thank you American Express, I’m so glad we didn’t leave home without you!!!!!


Hank and Ryan Anderson

**Not only is Ryan my niece, she is also the talented author behind the novels in The Detective Hank Jordan Series, and you can order her books here.

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You just got Birk’d!

Let me begin by saying, I am very proud of The Man.

Yesterday, while we were at the park with The Beans, he was asked to participate in a pickup game of basketball– two on two to be specific by a trio of boys less than half his age. He could have been their father, and he accepted.

Lord only knows what possessed them to invite him. After all, he was napping in the grass, wearing cargo shorts, a tee-shirt and… wait for it… Birkenstocks. Nothing about him screamed “pick me, pick me” and yet they did. Maybe they were desperate for a fourth. Or perhaps they were intent on exploiting the 40 year-old hippie dude napping peacefully in the grass. Whatever the case, kudos to them!

Honestly, I was shocked he knew how to play. This was a natural assumption, considering he was a baseball player in high school, I’ve never seen him play, and watching the Lakers duke it out with another team while sipping beer and eating wings from the comfort of our sofa hardly qualifies one to actually play the game, right? Giving credit where credit is due though, his passing game was impressive and he sank several baskets. At one point he even did the quintessential “Jordan stretch maneuver” (aka the Jordan Nike logo) in an attempt to dunk the ball, despite the fact he was 5 feet too short and has never dunked a basketball in his life. This resulted in his left index finger having an up close and personal encounter with the pole holding up the basket. But hey…at least he tried. How many other 40-somethings would have been so bold? Yeah, I thought so.

The Man’s got game. Who knew?

So. The games are over, having been halted by a call from one boy’s mom, summoning him home for dinner, and the other two followed suit, leaving as well. At this point, The Man realized “Oh shit. I’m the old guy.” I gathered The Beans, and we patiently waited laughed as The Man limped to the car, already feeling the effects of his bravado, aching muscles and…um… age. He, of course blamed it on the Birkenstocks.

The best part though, has been hearing about it for the last 24 hours. The pride in his voice is something that’s been absent for a long time, so I have been more than happy to listen to the play by play, so to speak. On the flip side, the most entertaining is the realization that he is more “Cartman” Jordan than Michael Jordan. Oh, and the explanation he gave the doctor this morning when we went to have the injured finger examined. It’s now in a splint, by the way. This being said, it inspired him to commit to getting in better shape, not only for his health, but also so he can return to the same court, play another pick-up game and walk away talking smack, saying….

“You just got Birk’d.” 

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