Things I was terribly confused about as a child

I get confused about a lot of things. These days, they tend to be things like how construction loans work, whether traditional or Roth IRAs are better, and if I remembered to turn off my curling iron. This level of confusion is nothing new. I’d say I’ve been in a perpetually confused state since I was a kid. When I was younger, though, my misunderstandings where much more comical. Take, for instance, these examples.

1) How lotteries worked

My grandfather bought lottery tickets quite often, frequently using my birthday as his numbers. He always told me that if he won he would buy me the horse I had wanted practically since birth. Apparently the concept of some sponsor just giving away millions of dollars was too much for my young brain to comprehend, because I was convinced that “the lottery” meant winning a horse. I was under the impression that some lottery man, as I referred to him, would call you if you won and then you would go to some massive farm with every kind of horse imaginable and just pick whichever one you wanted. Imagine my disappointment when I leaned that all you won was a ton of cash.

Luckily, when I was seven I got my horse Apache and was lucky enough to live the dream of many horse crazy little girls.   
2) Cavities

Now, this one is not entirely my fault. I don’t know if this is something all pediatric dentists use to try and explain the importance of good dental hygiene to young kids, but my dentist would always tell me she was looking for “cavity bugs” hiding in my teeth. From this, I got the idea that there were actually little bugs that would get in your mouth and eat your teeth. I guess it was effective, because I was always super good about brushing my teeth. Unfortunately, my dental woes are still many for reasons beyond my control, but that’s another story.

3) Yule Logs

Back before I got my horse when I was seven years old, I would wish on every star, eyelash, birthday candle, and 11:11 for a horse of my own. Once I figured out that the “lottery man” was never going to call and offer me a horse, my efforts to aquire a horse by other means doubled. I would try ANYTHING. 

The year I was five, Christmas rolled around and I was sure that I would at long last be getting a horse of my own. Why, you may ask? Because my aunt had told the about the magic of the Yule Log. Now, to be fair, I don’t actually remember what she told me about Yule Logs. Just, I assume, that they are some kind of special log you burn around Christmas. I took this to mean that any log that happened to be in the fireplace was a Yule Log and that you could make Christmas wishes on them that were sure to come true. So I plopped my little self down in front of the fire that Christmas Eve and whispered to the Yule Log my ultimate Christmas wish. I politely requested a purple horse that could fly, possessed human like intelligence, and would respond only to me. I had high standards, okay?? 

Now, I can’t express this next part enough. My parents did a really good job to never squash my imagination, so at this age I still whole heartedly believed in magic and Santa Claus and that Barney the dinosaur was my best friend. So I really and truly thought I was getting my purple horse (that I planned to name Wind Whistler, after my favorite My Little Pony) that Christmas. I was kind of crushed when, although I got lots of wonderful presents that day, none of them was a horse. In fact, I may still be a touch bitter about it.

4) Middle Names 

Around the time of the Yule Log debacle, I remember having a minor identity crisis. My kindergarten teacher was writing my name on a bunch papers, and I saw that she was writing three letters on all of them- M.E.R. My initials, of course, I just didn’t know it at the time. I figured out that the M and the R were my first and last name, but I couldn’t figure out what the E was. I asked my teacher, and she told me that was my middle name- Elizabeth. I was oddly baffled by this. I don’t know if I had just never realized I had a middle name or had known at one point but forgotten, but that night I made it a point to ask my mom about it. Unfortunately, I was a little jumbled up, so my question came out something like this: “Is Elizabeth really my name?” My mom, assuming I meant, “Is my middle name really Elizabeth?” told me yes. Which I then took to mean my name wasn’t really Megan but Elizabeth. Wanting to rectify the situation as soon as possible to avoid problems down the road, I spent all of recess the next day telling my friends that they would have to start calling my Elizabeth because that was my real name. Luckily, my best friend Sarah took matters into her own hands and called my house that night and asked my mom, who quickly set me straight that my real first name was, in fact, Megan. And all was well for the next 7 years until I decided I hated my name and needed to change it to something obnoxious and “unique.” Luckily I hear that wanting to change one’s name is considered developmentally normal and is fairly common amongst pre teens… 

5) Siblings

I was really sad that I was one of the only kids in kindergarten who was an only child. When a teacher asked me if I had any siblings, I decided to make myself fit in and say I had a sister named Kelsey. I talked about playing in the yard with Kelsey and exploring the woods with her. I told stories about my dad getting mad at her when she stole our neighbor’s Barbie doll. All of these stories were true. I just wasn’t describing my sister. I was telling stories about my family’s German Shepherd.

 Now, I wasn’t confused about whether a dog was the same thing as a sister. I was just tired of never having anything to contribute when my friends started telling stories about there siblings. My friends and teachers all believed me…until my teacher asked my mom how old Kelsey was one morning when she dropped me off at school. My mom as was like, “Uh, maybe three? I don’t really remember when we got her.” I can only imagine how confused both my teacher and my mom were. 
Me and my “sister” Kelsey  

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Thanks

For a long time I thought that Thanksgiving was the most overrated holiday. I’m not entirely sure what I didn’t like about it. Perhaps the Christmas lover in me just saw it as the final obstacle between me and the most wonderful time of the year.

Maybe it was my decade long hatred of turkey. And also pumpkin pie. I know, it’s weird. For the record, I balanced out those turkey free years by eating a smoked turkey and brie sandwich every single day for an entire summer the second year I worked at the restaurant.

Whatever the reason, I realized just this year how much I was looking forward to Thanksgiving and I was kind of surprised. I don’t know if Thanksgiving is just the kind of holiday that takes a certain maturity level to appreciate or if a strange obsession with pumpkin pie is on the rise (unlikely.) I do know that I have so many things I am thankful for, and so many people I want to extend thanks to this holiday season. So, a big thank you to:

1. My boyfriend

This is the guy who never fails to make me laugh, puts up with my neurotic tendencies, and is always willing to cook a delicious dinner no matter how late he has worked. Of course, I guess when the alternative is anything my meager cooking skills manage to whip up he is fairly motivated. He is a friend, lover, and partner all rolled into one and I love him dearly.

2. My parents

My mom and dad are just plain awesome. Time and time again I am amazed by them and everything they do for me. My dad is my go to mechanic, fixer of all things, sitter of the dog, and an all around amazing man. My mom is the one who listens to me complain without judgement, shares my sense of style and my love of horror movies, and is the Lorelai to my Rory. Hopefully that explains it.

3. My grandmother and aunt

My grandmother and aunt are two other major influences in my life. My grandmother is such a giving woman. She regularly makes dinner for us and always keeps my favorite ice cream in good supply, just in case. My aunt has always been like a second mom to me. In addition, she is a wonderful traveling companion, excellent financial advisor, and an all around cool lady.

4. The rest of my family

I have a fairly large extended family. I may not get to see all of them as often as would be ideal, but I always look forward to getting together with them around the holidays. They are a fun, loving, kind hearted bunch and I appreciate them more and more as the years go by.

5. Charlie

Charlie has only been with us for two months, but I can’t imagine life without him. There is no creature quite like a dog, who lives only to love and be loved. There is no day that can’t be made better by Charlie’s untiring devotion, love of life, and appreciation of the simple things. Like cheese. Cheese is good. So is sleeping on the bed all day (Psst! That helps his anxiety!)

6. My coworkers

I’m not sure how I would have survived the first few months of this school year if not for some truly wonderful coworkers at both of the schools I have the privilege of working at. I must have asked ninety billion questions by this point, but they have always answered with a smile and a willingness to help. I am so grateful for their support and I’ve learned so much from them.

7. The woman at the gas station

At the start of the school year I got into the habit of stopping at a gas station for coffee. Weirdly and inexplicably, this is the best coffee outside of the coffee from the restaurant I work at during the summer. But what really makes the coffee worth it is the woman who works there. Even at 6:45 in the morning she is always friendly and cheerful. She always greets me like a friend and never fails to compliment my outfit, my hair, something. I’m always disappointed when she is not there, and I appreciate her kindness more than she knows.

8. My friends

Leaving high school and then college is a strange thing. The people who have been such close friends to you move, start the next chapter of their lives, and things shift. So I just want to say, to all of my friends, those from high school, college, work, wherever, that I am so glad to have you in my life. We may not talk or see each other often, but the fact that I can always call or text you out of the blue with whatever is going on in my life means so much to me.

9. Callie

I can’t give thanks without mentioning Callie. I miss my sweet cat a lot and she will always hold a special place in my heart regardless of who she lives with.

10. Everyone else

Okay, this is beyond broad. But I feel like I am so lucky to have so many positive, uplifting people in my life- former teachers, mentors, fellow volunteers, and so many others. I am grateful for the presence of all of those people who may not fall into one of the above categories and everything the have taught me. I am the woman I am today because of everyone on this list.

Thank you, and I hope everyone has a wonderful day.

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Links to various places on the internet that have successfully distracted me

Someone needs to take away my post titling license. Clearly I cannot come up with a short, to the point title today. The above was my third attempt. On an unrelated side note, I cannot clean a litter box without causing minor plumbing disasters.

I blame my recent week long vacation. It was so darn relaxing I even neglected to take more than a few picture and also apparently forgot how to function in the real world. Not that I care. I got to enjoy this view every morning, which was well worth the temporary real world dementia.

lakeviewCallie enjoyed the view too. Of course, she spent her time outside safely secured in her cat carrier.

catcarrier

Yeah, we took the cat vacationing. Weirdly enough, she actually likes car rides. Especially when she gets to spend them like this:

calliecarride

So anyway, I have spent next to no time doing anything but basking in the sunshine for quite awhile and thus don’t have a whole lot of typical blog stuff to detail. However, I have managed to successfully distract myself from the impending doom that is my unorganized bathroom cabinets (and, okay, my closet too) with an assortment of random articles all over the internet. If you find yourself in a similar position of procrastination, have a look.

Also, I feel it’s only fair to warn you: I came across these things through various reliable and unreliable methods and have no idea how accurate/truthful/real some of these things are, so like a good margarita, take it all with a grain of salt.

1. This is why drugs are bad, kids

Some before and after pictures of what meth does to your appearance. It ain’t pretty, I’ll tell you that. It also makes my skin crawl.

2. Maps of vast empires that no longer exist

I really love historical maps. This infographic is a pretty cool way to show just how massive some historical empires were. Britain was basically set to take over the world. The Huns and the Mongols were doing pretty darn well for themselves, too.

3. What to do when you have a lazy cat

Cute pictures, and an idea I will possibly hold on to for a rainy day when I need to procrastinate some more.

4. This pretty much accurately sums up life as we know it

It’s true and it’s funny!

5. Countries of the World Quiz

See how many countries of the world can you name in 12 minutes? There are 196…ready, set go! (Also, why are there so many tiny island nations? Why??)