The Random Writings of Rachel

Funniest Marriage Moments

1. When Angel had a dream that I was going out on a third date with another guy and he was pretty upset because one, or even two dates, he could understand, but three dates in a row was just too serious of a relationship. He wasn't okay with the third date.

2. When my uncle passed us going the opposite way while we were driving, and later complained because he waved and waved but we didn't even see him because we were just looking at each other (not recommended when driving).

3. This story that's too embarrassing for me to even type again. If you're curious and want a laugh, read it. If you don't want to embarrass me further, don't read it. Up to you.

4. That time a nice young man asked me out at a New Year's Eve dance I attended with my family and I responded with "Thank you, but I'm married." and he said, "Oh, where's your husband?" and I said, "He's at work." and then we had a nice conversation about where Angel worked and the crazy schedules inspired by hospital shifts.

5. When we went on a date and Angel locked the keys in the car, and my grandparents lived ten minutes away so we ended up calling my grandparents to rescue us from the restaurant so that we could drive home in their van to pick up the spare keys. It's really weird to be married and to get picked up from a date by your grandpa.

6. The birthday when Angel wrapped up a whole bunch of stuff from around our house like they were birthday presents and gave them to me. He thinks this is hilarious. I think I'll finally come around to thinking this was funny in about 5 more years. I don't mess around when it comes to presents.

7. When, a year after we got married, I turned in a final paper for sociology class with my maiden name on it and later my professor called me over to talk and said he was going to deduct points because I forgot my own name. This was only funny when I realized he was joking.

8. When my cousins told me they were scared of Angel because his big teeth looked like shark's teeth.

9. That time there was a bat in our house and Angel videotaped himself catching it and then he brought it over to show it to me, which resulted in piercing screams, forever memorialized for posterity in the form of a video.

10. When I woke up screaming "Mommy!! Mommy!! Mommy!!" at the top of my lungs when Angel walked in the bedroom after midnight, getting home from a late shift at work. Hey, it's really scary when some guy just walks into your room in the middle of the night like he's supposed to be there!

11. All the times we went sledding with our cats Narcan and Morphine. Angel claimed they loved it. I'm not completely convinced.

12. When I came back from a trip to Malaysia, hadn't seen Angel in a few weeks, and he tried to disguise himself at the airport by wearing a hat and growing out his beard--knowing that I can't see very well when not wearing my glasses. I did find him in spite of his disguise, but not immediately.

13. When Angel utterly has always utterly despised the idea of costume parties or couples' costumes (even though I think they're awesome), and then bought a mascot-style bear costume on eBay.

14. First morning of marriage. Angel wakes up early and vacuums up all the glitter our relatives had sprinkled inside our car during the wedding. We get in the car to head out to breakfast. It's a sunny morning, so he puts the visor down, instantly dousing himself with a shower of glitter. I spend the rest of the drive holding the passenger seat visor tight against the ceiling so that I won't be similarly glittered.

Linking up with #LoveBlog because there's no better time to laugh about the funny stuff of marriage than during National Marriage Week.

What's your funniest marriage story? Or top 14 funniest? The more funny marriage stories, the better.

The Random Blog Awards, Part II

A little over two years ago, I published a grand post honoring bloggers in a number of categories with Random Blog Awards. These blog awards are completely random, contain no monetary value and no real bragging rights, either. I am the sole judge of these awards. After over two years, and because a good percentage of the bloggers I named are no longer blogging (*sob*) I figured it's time to have a second round of awards:

Best Houseguest: Beka. Granted, she's the only blogger who's ever stayed in my house, so perhaps I haven't given the rest of you much of a chance, but still, she clearly wins this category.

Funny Bloggers that are Not Me: Michelle earns this award for the second time! Amazing! Incredible! Fantastic! Also, Jenny. She's the kind of person who reads her own blog because she thinks it's hilarious, and that's exactly the same way I am, so obviously I appreciate that.

Most Traveled Blogger: Chelsea. I mean, 7 continents last year. It would be pretty hard to beat that, so there's really no contest here.

Makes Biking for Exercise Actually Sound Exciting: Ali. I'm sure that's what she wants to be famous for. Search her blog for "Northern Lights" if you're wondering what in the world I'm talking about.

Best Closets Full of Vintage Clothes: I have a not-so-secret love for vintage clothing and retro styles, in spite of a wardrobe full of green and purple skinny jeans. Suzanne and Jessica both have enviable vintage collections, if I were the envying sort. I'm not, but I am mighty glad that all those gorgeous dresses exist out there somewhere!

Blogger Who I Wish Blogged More Often: Miss Nutralicious. Sorry, it's just that I'm fond of funny random stories.

Best Command of the English Language: Amanda. Automatically. I think editors are cool people.

Most Memorable Blog Name: For The Love of Tuna. I don't even like tuna. Actually, I'll refuse to eat it. And yet somehow I'm drawn to this uniquely-named blog.

LoveBlog with Belle Brita

A Lifetime of Valentines

The first time I remember having anything to do with Valentine's Day, I was about 10 years old and my great-grandma mailed Valentines to all of us kids. I kept her little card for years.

A few years later, I was approximately 15, and we were at church sometime around Valentine's Day and I coordinated with several friends to leave an anonymous love note on my little sister's chair. We used all the tricks in the book--bizarre phrasing and heavily disguised handwriting, along with an alibi so that I was obviously in another part of the church when the note got placed on her chair. She believed the letter might actually be from an anonymous admirer for about 10 minutes, which I consider to be a highly successful result.

Several years later, I was a much more mature 17 year old in college, far from family, and I made Valentines for all my siblings and sent them across the ocean without pretending to be an anonymous admirer.

When I was 19, I celebrated my first Valentine's Day with my husband! If I remember correctly, he bought me several mystery novels. On Valentine's Day itself, he went to work his 7pm-7am night shift, and I went to a Valentine's party with a bunch of college friends, where we had a blind Valentine's card exchange (hilarious!) and decorated cookies and voted for the winning cookies. I voted for my friend's cookie--he'd made it look like a broken heart.

In 2014, I had plans for an adventurous Valentine's Date, when they fell through because my parents called and said we needed to help them load all of their stuff (and some of our stuff) into a U-Haul. They were selling the house we lived in, and we had plans to move out soon, so everything had to be moved. So, instead of playing paintball for the holiday, I lost my beloved bed to storage.

In 2015, we were vacationing in Malaysia and I hosted an amazing Valentine's Day Party, complete with cookies to decorate, card supplies to make cards with, and silly games. All the best of Valentine's, rolled into one party. And then we played the Newlywed Game at another party and LOST because Angel was positive we got married on December 5th (we didn't).

This year, my 5 sisters and I made this Valentine's Day video while brother Isaac utterly refused to be involved because he refuses to acknowledge the existence of the holiday.

And then my sister gave me a "Malaysia, Truly Pineapple" and claimed it was for Valentine's Day. Isn't that cool?

Every memory I have of Valentine's Day is awesome. What's not to love? I don't know exactly what we will do for it this year--I think it's a little late to start planning a party on the scale of last year's, but whatever it is, it'll be fun!

Linking up with #LoveBlog today!

What's your best Valentine's Day memory?

A Day in My Life (on a Tuesday)

6:08 a.m. Wake up. Head sleepily to the computer. I would shower first, but I don't want to wake up Angel with the lights from the bathroom. So I check Facebook and email and blog email and respond to blog comments and send messages to siblings or friends.

6:40 a.m. Shower, brush teeth, comb hair.

6:55 a.m. Bible time! I challenged the youth group I volunteer with to read their Bibles everyday for a month and if I challenge other people to do it, I better be prepared to do it myself. Today, I finish Nehemiah, chosen because I decided to spend the Bible reading challenge on obscure books that I'm not very familiar with.

7:10 a.m. Breakfast: cornflakes with chia seeds and The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio.

7:22 a.m. Final preparations for preschool, making sure I have all the supplies for any planned activities and making sure the right books are out and any books we aren't using are put away.

7:35 a.m. Chop up vegetables for lunch. I always try to get some food prep done in the morning before the kids come so that when it's time to actually make lunch, it's a quick job. Today we're having chicken tacos, and I've chopped a zucchini, an onion, a couple tomatoes, a couple cloves of garlic, and a bunch of green onions to cook up with my chicken later.

8:05 a.m. Kiss Angel goodbye as he leaves for work and start taking down the laundry and folding it and putting it away. However, I'm not able to immediately finish this job because...

8:10 a.m. The first kid arrives and we start the day with reading practice and then learning new spelling words. Later, while he copies spelling words, I attempt to finish the laundry task but am unable to put everything away because there's one sock leftover. This is ridiculous. Leftover socks happen to other people, not to me. I own a total of 6 pairs of socks that I bought in America in 2014 before we moved and they ought never to be separated. I have yet to discover the answer to this mystery.

8:55 a.m. The little girls arrive and group class begins with group storytime. We talk about what we do at different times of day and practice telling time. This week we're focusing on the letter W, so we make paper watches. Various sorts of educational activities progress over the next few hours.

12:04 p.m. The last of the kids gets picked up and I start cooking lunch. Staying in the kitchen while cooking during the dry season (when it's extra hot!) is unthinkable, so while the chicken, veggies, and spices cook on the stove, I clean the bathroom mirror and counters and put the new set of sheets on the spare bed. Never mind that the robot ended up upside down, at least the bed now has sheets that aren't on their last legs.

12:33 p.m. Angel gets home from work! Earlier than normal. He sets about making a banana, cinnamon, and orange smoothie while skyping with his brother on the laptop while I finish up lunch.

1:00 p.m. We sit on the couch for lunch paired with an episode of Castle from Iflix. The past few days have not allowed time for TV, so this was really fun. After I finished eating, I worked on a coloring page till the show was over.

1:45 p.m. Angel doesn't have any afternoon classes, but he has lesson planning to do for his 6 hours of class time on the morrow, so I leave him strictly alone so as not to encourage procrastinating. My early afternoon is not terribly productive. I even curl up to read more of The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio again.

2:30 p.m. I head downstairs to my parents' apartment to talk to mom about plans for some upcoming events. I'm surprised by an eerily silent house as the littles are napping and the big kids are all doing schoolwork. Tranquility!

3:00 p.m. I turn on a dance routine tutorial from Youtube--my preferred way to exercise, because y'all know I don't run. Then I do a little computer work, including email and updating this very blog post. I wonder why I didn't decide to do this 'day in the life' thing yesterday. Yesterday afternoon was way more exciting. We celebrated Shiloh's 5th birthday with Frozen-inspired activities, including building a snowman (pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey style) and making fake snow. See?

4:15 p.m. I get ready for my afternoon student to show up. Morning is preschool, but afternoon is high-school level analogies, writing exercises, and SAT vocabulary study. How fun!

5:45 p.m. Angel's done lesson planning for the day and heads out for a run with my sisters.

6:07 p.m. My student leaves. My sessions always seem to run slightly long. Her family gave me a bag of treats for Chinese New Year!

6:30 p.m. Angel heads off to night market with Rebekah to get dinner for everyone after taking orders from those too lazy to pick up their own food. For me? Roti canai. Others order wan tan mee or chicken rice. Angel goes because he loves the pearl tea. I stay home, upload these photos, and get a little computer work done.

7:00 p.m. I call Angel to ask if I can finish off the lunchtime smoothie (isn't it a sad surprise when you come home and find out that someone else has eaten the leftovers you had in mind? I wouldn't want him to be surprised). I gulp down the smoothie, and wash the blender and cup. We never have a sink full of dishes--both of us just wash whatever we use when we use it to avoid that dreaded phenomenon. Then I go back to my book.

7:30 p.m. Angel's back with my roti canai, and we sit down for dinner. Angel got himself a bowl of fruit, jellies, and ice instead of the usual pearl tea. He spent a total of 10 RM for the two of us  (about $2.50 USD). Roti canai is really cheap, and that's only one reason why I like it. Who wouldn't like fried bread? Then I keep reading my book and Angel reads the news--I'll never understand why anyone would do that for fun.

8:30 p.m. To bed. Early tonight, because we have no nighttime appointments, and we're early-birds anyway. Plus, we always talk ourselves to sleep, a habit picked up from hour-long phone conversations before bed back in courting days, one that we've never dropped.

It occurs to me, upon reflection, that my days seem to involve a large number of books and nearly as much food. Every day has a slightly different schedule--on this Wednesday morning, Angel won't be home from work till 6 p.m. or so. But every day is awesome in it's own tiny way.

Running Update

Now, when I say the word "running," you all know I'm not talking about myself! I remain staunchly not-a-runner, but Angel exerted enough peer pressure to convince certain members of my family to sign up with him for 2 races in the month of January. They started training on the 15th of December, training which was especially necessary because no one in my family has ever run a race, and even Angel hadn't run regularly in nearly a year.

On the first Saturday of the new year, Angel, Dad, MaryGrace, and Rebekah participated in a 5k Glow Night Fun Run.

Angel 'won' the race, being the very first finisher, quite possibly because he was the only person who decided to run a "Glow Run" seriously. Everyone else was just there for the fun...and the glow sticks.

The 2nd race of the month was on the 31st--for this one, the two girls were running in an under-18 6k, while Angel ran the 10k. It was a very early Sunday morning for us, we were in the car and headed to the race site shortly after 5:30 a.m.

The whole family came out to cheer, which was a good thing, because there was practically no one else cheering for the race, so we cheered for all the winners.

Unfortunately, the winners didn't include any members of our crew, but they all finished! Rebekah finished the 6k in 43 minutes, MaryGrace in 55 minutes. Angel came in with 48 minutes for his 10k, a time he's not happy with, but he figures it was the best he could do on a course that had "rolling hills" (that's the description from the race website. The rolling hills were big enough to dismay quite a few of the runners, by all accounts.) and with only 6 weeks of training. He was hoping to place in the top 10 for the Men's Open, but he came in 24th for Men's Open and in the top 50 overall. He's now planning on signing up for another race in April and then will have no more excuses.

I created a video of our race day experience. Watch for running footage as well as complaints about the size of the hills.

The race ended with a trip to McDonald's, after which everyone went home and showered, and made it to church only a few minutes late for service. Angel headed off to work right after church, taught for three hours, and in the evening we went to a birthday dinner for a friend.

So if Angel can run a 10k, go to church, and teach a 3-hour class on Sunday, what's your excuse?

Mine is that running is boring and not fun. :)