Category Archives: General Hoo-Hah

50 Awesome Things Before I Turn 50

If I don’t get this post out today, I feel like I’ll never get it out. Life is pulling me in 300 directions at once…and my blog has suffered for it. Until now. I’m forcing myself right back up on the horse. The internet is about to get a bit less quiet and a lot more Hot Mess.

Peeps, today I start a series of posts called “50 Awesome Things Before I Turn 50”.

50 things

I got the idea from a Facebook friend who’s doing 40 awesome things before her 40th birthday. Unfortunately, 40 passed me a while ago. This November, I’ll turn the big 5-0…and to make things interesting I’ve decided to do 50 awesome things before my birthday.

If you’re not a fan on Facebook, you might want to be…because I’m going to open some of these activities up to anyone who wants to join me. I’ll post the info on my Facebook fan page – so watch for that!

Now…I also need your help with a slight problem. When I started this list, there was more than enough time to plan and save up for some of the bigger items – but as life interfered and my budget shrank, I had to remove quite a few things from the list. Now it’s full of holes…and my imagination is stretched on this topic. That’s where you come in.

For the love o’ God, please…if you have an idea for something I can do to fill this list, leave a comment and tell me. One thing, though: no tattoos. I have many loved ones with tattoos, so I have nothing against it whatsoever (even HMH has a tattoo). It’s not for me. It’s a needle thing, not a judgy thing. So if you have any other ideas, shout ’em out!

Here’s my list thus far:

1. Give blood
2. Volunteer
3. Visit my cousin in Florida
4. Sketch something
5. Rollerskate
6. Enter the State Fair of Texas needlework competition
7. Send flowers to someone
8. Take a CHL class
9. Write a short story
10. Play with sidewalk chalk
11. Finish the watercolor painting I started in Florida
12. Get my passport
13. Buy a new bike
14. Take a knitting class
15. Walk a 5K
16. Design my first cross stitch pattern
17. Over-tip a waitress
18. Attend a live performance
19. Play in the rain
20. Lose 100 pounds
21. Serve myself breakfast in bed
22. Clean out my closet to donate clothes
23. Eat ice cream for the first time in a year
24. Embroider something
25. Clean out the trunk of my car (talk about a hot mess…)
26. Watch a movie outside
27. Eat a popsicle
29. Watch a sunrise
31. Inspire a rebel
32. Surprise my Mom with a weekend visit
33. Make a really cool craft project
34. Teach a child a new skill
35. Help someone think better of himself or herself
37. Make a new friend
38. Read a book
39. Go to the movies again (it’s like pulling teeth to get HMH to go)
40. Buy a stranger a drink
42. Random act of baking kindness
44. Ride a rollercoaster
45. 2014 DFW Penis Expedition (Confused? Read this: I live in a penis!)
46. Make a candle
47. Go to the top of the ball at Reunion Tower in Dallas
49. Surprise HMH with a super awesome home-cooked dinner
50. Perform a random act of kindness every day for a week

I’ve even done a few of these already because it’s taken me so damn long to write this post. Let’s get busy crossing a few off…and filling in the holes. Who’s with me?


37 strikes and…you’re OUT!

I’m talking to you, Avenue clothing stores. You’re outta here.

I spent years on the big side of a size 32 (meaning I could squeeze into them but I’d be covered in red welts by the time I waddled my way home from work). When you’re on the plus side of plus size, your choice in clothing stores is limited. Lane Bryant only carries up to size 26/28. And Catherine’s? Well…I probably could have found some things that fit me, but their styles are not for me. I prefer to wear clothes that are somewhat understated and conservative…and Catherine’s seems to want me to look like a giant tropical flower bedecked in sequins and glitter. Not my thing. So I was stuck with the Avenue.

Going by baseball rules, they should have been out after three strikes but since my choices were limited I had to stick with them until I figured my shit out. Now I have…and I’ve dropped five sizes. Last weekend, I dared to step into another clothing store and was treated to something I haven’t seen in a very long time: customer service.

But let’s go back to the Avenue for a minute. Let’s talk about the three biggest strikes they have against them in my book.

Strike 1: impersonal staff.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve walked into one of these stores and heard someone lethargically yell “Welcome to the Avenue!” from the back with about as much enthusiasm as I have going to the gyno. (Oh God….do I really have to do this? Can’t they just xray my vag and tell me I’m okay? GROSS!)

I try not to be a rude bitch on a daily basis, so I always yell back “Thanks!” to the disembodied voice in the back of the store. No one actually steps forward to say hello or ask if I need help.

There’s usually only one person on the floor at a time. If there are two, they’re usually back there together…talking about how they’re going to put the merchandise on the floor or about the customer who stayed in the store until 9:02 pm last night. I once stood next to two employees, one who was working in the store where I was shopping and the other who was visiting from another store, as they had a conversation about an irate customer. My arms were loaded with clothing I wanted to try on. Both of them ignored me completely while they went on and on about this irate customer. I’m too big to be invisible, folks. I was standing right there within four feet of them…obviously waiting to be helped…and, nope, nothing. I finally interrupted them and asked for a fitting room.


Strike 2: Lame-ass failures

Tired of sewing my workout pants back together for the umpteenth time, I went over to the Avenue to buy a new pair. I walked around looking for some but couldn’t find any. The closest thing they had was a pair of bright blue velour lounging pants. Velour. As I neared the back of the store, an employee approached and asked if she could help me find something. (It has been known to happen, I’ve just learned not to rely on it).

“Yes, thanks,” I said. “I’m looking for some workout pants. You know…like the nylon or polyester blend ones we had to wear in gym class in high school?”

“Ohhhhh, no,” laments the Avenue chick. “We don’t have anything like that, I’m sorry.”

“Why not?” I asked incredulously.

“Well, we only carry workout stuff in January,” she offers back. “You know…because of resolutions.”



This was one of those times for me when I could feel myself wanting to open up and vent and my filter was frantically trying to get me to stop. Think. Don’t say something rude, HMP!!! Don’t do it!!!

I shook my head, rolled my eyes, and replied “Oh riiiiight. Because the fatties only work out after New Years, I’d forgotten. How silly of me…it’s June. We’ve all failed by now, right?”

Poor Avenue chick. She didn’t know what to say. To her credit, she tried to be helpful by pointing out the velour lounging pants.

“We do have these…”

Now I’m pissed at the ridiculousness of the situation.

“Well, those are made of velour. If I workout in those the thigh friction alone would have the inside legs bald in no time. The gym floor would look like someone murdered the Cookie Monster.”



“Well, I guess you’re right. I’ll have to quit working out and wait for next January. Thanks for your help.”

I skulked off to Catherine’s, thinking I couldn’t get more pissed off. I was wrong. They didn’t have any workout gear either. But they had chocolate for sale by the register.

Strike 3: Bad fashion advice

I walked into the Avenue last week, eager to see if I could fit into a size 24. An employee was straightening a table near the entrance. And, by the way, this reminds me…why are some customers such dillholes? Do they really not realize that someone just set up that beautiful display of tshirts? I’ll never understand people who unfold something to look at it and then toss it on the table. Rude.

Sorry…I digress. I said “I’m looking for dress pants.”

The girl nodded and, quite seriously, pointed out a rack of black dress pants. Then she offered “You’re lucky. This is all we have.”

“Ohhh…yeah,” I answered. “Because they’re black and it’s summertime, right?”

She shook her head negatively. “No.”

I guess I wasn’t going to get an explanation and, as much as I knew I would regret it, I had to ask why. So I did.

“Because people just aren’t wearing pants anymore.”



You can’t say shit like that to me, okay? My mind goes from innocent to dirty in 3 seconds.

“My God, why not?”

“Everyone’s wearing shorts and capris now. Or dresses.”

Oh, I see. Everyone is. Then I looked down. “You’re wearing pants…”

Maybe she thought I wouldn’t notice?


Just as a bonus, let me add this little tidbit: I went to buy new bras at the Avenue but I couldn’t see the size on the tag anymore. I asked the girl to measure me. She’s worked there a while and I always recognize her.

“Oh! You’re at least an H cup and we don’t carry anything that big.”

Um…no. I explained to the girl that I’d purchased the bra I was wearing less than a year before. It’s a DDD.

“No, you’re at least an H. Where did you go to buy it? They measured you wrong.”

Without missing a beat, I replied that I’d purchased the bra at…the Avenue.

“Oh, which store?”

This one.

“Well, the person who measured you must have done it wrong. I’m sorry.”

You measured me.”

You’re outta here!

There have been countless other failures that I won’t list out entirely. I think I’ve made my point. Out of habit, I’ve just kept going back there…even though I’ve dropped from a tight size 32 to a 22 now. Until last week when I walked into a Torrid store.

As soon as I walked in, I was greeted by Rachel. I know her name is Rachel because she (shocker) told me her name. With a smile on her face. Right before she asked me if she could help me with anything.

Yes, perhaps you could help me up off the floor because I’m not used to being greeted with such courtesy.

Rachel asked my name and explained the sales they were having. My favorite was the yellow tag sale. Buy something with a yellow tag and get another yellow tag item for $1. Then there was the red tag sale. And the jeans for $19. And the rest of the store was on sale as well. Buy one item, get 50% off another.

Most of their stuff is casual, which is okay…but I’m always running short on clothes for work, which have to be professional. I asked Rachel, who was a whirlwind as she moved around the floor greeting and helping customers, but always seemed to have time for each of us. She pointed out their dress slacks, which looked absolutely perfect for work. I was relieved.

Rachel also pointed out that they had suit jackets to match those dress slacks. $54 for the jacket. I think it was slightly more for the pants, but with the “buy one, get 1/2 off the next” sale, I was quite pleased.

She set up a fitting room for me. As I moved around the floor, other employees would occasionally check on me. They all knew my name. They all used my name. I have to say…it was quite refreshing.

I was on a budget, so I couldn’t spend much. I ended up walking out of there with a $43 denim jacket that would have been $60 at the Avenue. Because it was a yellow tag item, I got a khaki military style jacket for $1.

As it so happens, there’s a Lane Bryant next door to the Torrid in my area. I had to go in. I haven’t been in a Lane Bryant in years and I wanted to see what they had going on.

Marble floors. Some pretty clothes. Not a soul in sight. I walked over to a suit jacket that caught my eye. $99. For a suit jacket. Buh-bye. I left…and never saw one employee anywhere in the store.

Now I need to go shopping again. The bras that the H-cup chick at the Avenue sold me are too small. Guess where I’m headed?

Yep. Torrid.

(And no, I haven’t been financially compensated for this post in any way…they’re just that awesome.)

I’m Not Rocky Balboa

You know that scene in one of the Rocky movies when he’s training? He runs through the streets of Philly as his fans cheer him on, then he runs up those stairs and throws his arms in the air in victory as the then-inspiring but now nauseating “Gonna Fly Now” song blares in the background. Remember?


I had a Rocky Balboa moment on Sunday. Well…I thought I did.

When I first bought my elliptical trainer, I could only do 5 minutes before I was jumping off in a sweaty, oozy heap. I hated clunking along on the damn thing, feeling like a hippo stuck in quicksand. It wasn’t very motivating.

Since I don’t normally enjoy feeling like a hippo stuck in quicksand, I avoided the elliptical trainer frequently. Because naturally what you should do if you’re trying to get healthy is avoid exercise, am I right? And then when I was done avoiding exercise I made sure to give myself a very healthy dose of guilt…because who doesn’t love guilt, right? It’s so good for morale, really. It perks you right up. This is the kind of misguided thinking that got me to gain 220 pounds in the first place…trust me.

It took a few weeks, but I finally came around to realizing that sitting on the couch and mentally berating myself for avoiding the elliptical trainer wasn’t getting me where I wanted to be. In fact, after I hit the sacred 45 pound mark I was eager to get to 50…so I made a deal with myself last week that I would just give it a shot. I promised myself that I would get on the elliptical every day last week for at least 10 minutes and see where that got me.

Bad Ass Couch copy

Monday came and I did 10 minutes of stuck-in-the-mud hippo leg pumping. I started hurling mental crap at myself for not being able to do more. (Because that’s helpful, right?) I actually had to tell myself to shut it. And I did. I focused my attention back on what I could do.

Tuesday came…10 minutes. Wednesday came. I begrudgingly tried 15 minutes. I’m pleased to inform y’all that I did not, in fact, die. I was just fine. Thursday came. I dropped a pound and did 15 minutes. Friday came and I set the timer thingy for 15 minutes…but as my 15 minutes were coming to an end, I realized that I felt just fine. I knew I could do more.

I finished Friday with 25 minutes…and for the first time, I felt a little glimmer of pride. I was also really sweating for the first time since I’d started this experiment. Don’t get me wrong, 10 minutes of leg-pumping hippo cardio is great…but I wasn’t left feeling particularly productive at the end of it. I wasn’t even really sweating. All I had to show for it was sort of a pasty, sticky feeling…much like what I’d get if I accidentally got too close to a Kardashian, I imagine.

Saturday I woke up, stepped onto the bathroom scale, and discovered that I was 1 pound away from hitting 50 pounds lost. Holy shit…1 more pound. This is where it started to get away from me. Just a tad.

That morning I climbed onto my new BFF, aka the elliptical trainer, confident that I could hold my own for a respectable 25 minutes…and I did. I went about the rest of my day with a saucy little spring in my step. I was no longer Sit-On-The-Couch-And-Feel-Guilty Dianne…I was becoming Badass-Who-Works-Out Dianne. And I liked it.

When I woke up Sunday morning, I piddled around a bit but I was eager to see my BFF again. What a change from Monday, right? It wasn’t too long before I tucked my ear buds in and was ready to go. The hippo was gone. I wasn’t gracefully gliding away like the 120 pound beauties I used to see at the gym, but I was pumping away with new found confidence. It felt really good.

As I went about the rest of my day, I kept thinking about the fact that I’d lost 49 pounds. One more pound to go to my first major goal. I was proud of myself – and that’s extraordinary for me. I’m used to telling myself I can’t…I won’t…I shouldn’t. I’ve got 20 years of negativity under my belt…so what happens when I suddenly start to feel a little confidence? A little positivity? A little moxy?

I think I’m Rocky Balboa.


Suddenly I wasn’t content to bask in the glory of my 25 minutes on the elliptical. Nooooo. I wanted to push the envelope. Feel the burn. Poke the angry badger. Well, I’m not too sure if that last one is an actual saying…but you get the drift. I wanted more of this feeling-good-about-myself stuff. I decided to do another 25 minutes on the elliptical. Hell YEAH!!!!

After finishing some more housework, I updated the status on my Facebook fan page to let everyone know I was going for it…and I climbed onto the elliptical and started up. And y’all cheered me on…just like the screaming fans that chased Rocky down that street (except we’re all much more attractive and would never be seen in public in crappy gray sweats or pleather pants).

I finished my second round of 25 minutes, although honestly I spent the last 10 minutes of it wondering what the hell I thought I was doing. I was sweating in places I didn’t know I had. And muscles…they hurt. At least I think that’s what they were. I haven’t used them in a very long time. Do humans have muscles in their asses? Because I just thought I had two lumps of memory foam with a crack down the middle, but wow…even my ass muscles hurt when I was done.

I posted my victory on Facebook which, in this scenario, is the virtual equivalent of Rocky thrusting his fists up in the air as the city of Philadelphia cheered around him. Screw that piddly first 25 minutes I did that morning…now I’d really accomplished something, right?

I half-collapsed onto Hot Mess Hubby’s chair (with him in it) for a few minutes. He gave me a reassuring hug, chuckled, and said in an I-told-you-so tone “Yeah, I thought you were crazy…”

He was right. He speaks from experience. Because when I’m super motivated to do anything, I instantly turn into Clark Griswold from National Lampoon’s Vacation movies.


You know Clark. He overdoes everything…and so do I. By the time Downton Abbey started, I was waddling around the house like a 90 year old rodeo queen. Didn’t sleep too well either. Every time I rolled over or…took a frigg’in breath…my muscles screamed in pain. And the next morning? Yeah, I couldn’t put on my pants. That’s probably not a good sign.

So…lesson learned. I promise to remember that I’m more Clark Griswold than Rocky Balboa (and that’s really okay because Rocky couldn’t enunciate for shit and I can’t hang with talking like I’ve got a sock in my mouth). Plus when it all comes down to it, I’d rather be guilty of a little too much enthusiasm.

I declared Monday a rest day. Enthusiastically. And I enjoyed every minute of it.

Oh and I lost 3 pounds during my experiment. I also eventually got into my pants.

Tonight’s goal is 30 minutes. I’ve got this…and, hopefully sometime this week, I’ll be able to tell you that I’ve lost my first 50 pounds.

Have you ever overdone it? Don’t leave me hanging out on a limb here…share your story and make me smile.

Biofreeze Pain Relieving Roll On, 3-Ounce (Pack of 3)

Sunbeam 732-500 King Size Heating Pad with UltraHeatTechnology

The DFW Penis Expedition of 2013

A month ago, four of my most loyal, bat shit crazy girlfriends and I drove the DFW Penis. I’ve tried to come up with a funny, witty post that would pay homage to the hilarity that ensued on that day but I need to remember the simple fact that sometimes it’s not necessary to add to something. Sometimes all I need to do is set the scene and let you watch it with your own eyes. So that’s what I’m going to do.

Before we get started, let me just remind you that this mission is called the 2013 DFW Penis Expedition for a reason. Therefore, it’s safe to say that it’s not suitable for viewing at work or in front of children. There are quite a few videos linked in this blog post, so be sure to have your speakers or headphones hooked up – and you should know that when you click on the video links a new browser window will open for you…so be sure to find your way back here when you’re done.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let me set the scene for you…

My friends, Brenda, Lauren, and future blogger Jackie arrived at my house at 9 am sharp. I introduced them all to our mascot, whom you’ll meet in a minute: Gregory Pecker. He’s a dick. I handed out gift bags for the girls and then we did a “gear check” on the hood of my car to make sure we had all the shit we’d need for an epic trip. Since we planned to get out of the car at the head of the penis (pretty close to the pee hole) we knew hard hats and protective eye wear was important.

 photo 20130921_090648_zpsroz7bvct.jpg

 photo 20130921_090940_zpsfos2gcei.jpg

Then it was time to shoot the intro video for our Expedition – so Lauren grabbed the camera and Jacky and Brenda came with me. Click here to see the YouTube introduction to the DFW Penis that we recorded just for you.

After that, it was time for us to put Gregory Pecker in the car and hit the road penis!

 photo 20130921_092812_zpsy7l2ilpb.jpg

You probably already know this, but we’ll share a road trip tip with you anyway: when taking a road trip it’s good to have some tunes to jam with in the car. It helps pass the time. We recommend Jungle Love. Click here for the video.

First stop on the 2013 DFW Penis Expedition: the Texas shaped thing of I-20 and Mountain Creek Parkway. I don’t know what the hell this thing is made of but it’s big and shaped like Texas…and people are always pulling off the road to take their picture in front of it. I first shared this place with you in my blog post called “Hello, Arlington!” about interesting places in my town. This is the first time I’ve actually pulled off the road and walked out to it.

 photo 20130921_094352_zps8scmyzpu.jpg

Oh, what a sight I’m sure we were as we walked back to Brenda’s car with a giant inflatable penis. Click here to check it out.

Next, it was back on the road penis…as we urged Brenda, our driver, to hydrate. You know the old saying…there’s no better way to hydrate than to drink Starbucks through a penis straw. Click here to view the unexpected side effects.

Before too long, we were all the way down the base of the shaft and the highway was curving into the balls. Woohoo!

Now…let’s talk about tailgaters for a minute. Not the fun, happy BBQ’ing in the parking lot before a sporting event kind of tailgaters…no. I’m talking about the kind of complete asshat who gets behind the wheel of a car and decides that he’s going to ride your ass until you change lanes in shame because you’re just not as awesome as he is. If you’re like me, you either ignore them or pull over and let them whiz by…but not today, my friends. Not today.

When we didn’t cower to his interstate bullying, he got the surprise of his life. As he cut over and zoomed past us, Jackie waved Gregory Pecker out the window at him and he couldn’t get away fast enough. He pulled in front of us briefly, but I imagine the sight of us in the rear view mirror was a little more than he bargained for. Pee first…and then click here to see why.

We were officially deep in the balls of the DFW Penis, otherwise known as Mesquite. It was getting pretty bushy…

 photo 20130921_101054_zpsqsrg4fv7.jpg

This seems like a good place to get off the penis…

 photo 20130921_101116_zpsgmce5367.jpg

We took the Gross Road exit in Mesquite to do a little investigating. When it comes to lady gardening, we’re all pretty fastidious, yes? So why was all this bush around the balls of the DFW Penis? We had to check it out for ourselves. Click here to see the video of our investigation.

We found our way back to the highway and were soon traveling north up the shaft and then…shit. This happened.

This is what happens when four women are stuck in traffic with an inflatable penis.

Now, I would love to continue and tell you more about the 2013 DFW Penis Expedition…but I can’t. Why? Because my phone died and Jackie documented the other half of the trip. DOH! Rest easy, though…Jackie is about to go public with her own blog and she’s promised to post about the DFW Penis Expedition very soon.

UPDATE: Jackie met a guy and became a huge turd and flaked on the whole blog thing. Okay, sure, he turned out to be Mr. Right…and he’s pretty awesome and everything…but we never got the footage of the second half of the DFW Penis Expedition. I think we need a re-do.

In other news, I lost 113 pounds and 8 sizes in clothes…and I no longer look like the jolly penis princess in these videos. And Jackie is about to marry her Mr. Right. And now Brenda’s engaged. Holy shit…yeah, we definitely need to ride the penis. One. Last. Time.

Stay tuned…

Gregory Pecker – Inflatable Blow Up Penis for Bachelorette Party

Bachelorette Party Favors Dicky Sipping Straws – Asst. Colors Pack of 10

DIY French Memo Board

Ah…the French memo board. They’re gorgeous. I love them. From the time I saw the huge board behind Rachel’s desk on Friends (I can’t find a picture of it, but trust me…it was awesome), I’ve wanted one. If you’re not sure what I’m talking about, I offer Exhibit A for your consideration:

They come in all types of fabric backgrounds from damask to burlap and use everything from ribbon to jute for the criss-crossy things. I’d looked around quite a bit and I couldn’t find one that I was absolutely in love with, so I decided to make my own. How hard can it be, right? There are a gazillion blog posts out there about how to make your own, so I schlepped over to Pinterest and found one. Here’s where it begins to go south.

I skimmed the directions. C’mon…it’s a piece of plywood covered in quilt batting and fabric, then wrapped in ribbon and finished with upholstery tacks. Doesn’t take a rocket scientist, right? Right. It does, however, take a person who can follow directions.

Hot Mess Hubby thinks he’s a woodworker, so he actually had 1/4 inch plywood in the garage. He didn’t even have to cut it for me. He had a piece that was 3 X 2 and that’s about the size I wanted. Perf!

I headed off to the fabric and craft store for the rest and returned with my stash: a nice, rustic looking burlap, a matching jute twine type trim, and deep brown upholstery tacks. Rock’in. Let’s do this.

I had quilt batting in my needlework stash, so I didn’t have to buy that. All I needed was HMH’s trusty staple gun and I was in business. He handed it to me as he walked out the door to go work, mumbling “And that’s all the staples we have, so…don’t waste ’em.”

Great. Thanks, babe!

Our house is currently one giant heap of disorganization, thanks to non-stop projects (which includes the current project of turning a spare room into my personal office and organizing a few dozen boxes of stuff to donate to charity). The only feasible place to put this thing together was the living room, so I used the coffee table for a work bench. I went to town, first laying out the burlap and then the quilt batting, then settling the plywood in the middle. I started in the middle of the board with the staple gun and worked my way out to the edges, pulling the burlap tightly as I went. It was louder than I expected and Dyson certainly didn’t appreciate it.

Momma...clean up all this crap before you make pretties please!
It wasn’t long before he was hiding out at the top of the stairs.

Once the plywood was completely wrapped, it was time to start with the ribbon. I’d purchased a spool of jute twine stuff and was pretty sure I’d have enough. Nope. Not even close. Three trips across the board and I was out. Major fail.

I stopped at the craft store on my way home and they were out of jute twine stuff. Bastards. I opted for turquoise satin ribbon. I bought two spools, 18 feet each. That should do it, right? Right. I rushed home and started with my project. Dyson fled to the top of the stairs again. Pussy.

Halfway through my first sweep, I ran out of staples. Shit.

Got staples?
Got staples?

HMH found some more in his “wood shop” the next day and loaded up the gun for me, but this project was really starting to piss me off.

Yeah, you read that right. I was pissed at the project, not my lack of planning. The closest I can come to explaining this phenomenon is to point out that I’ve been married to Mr. Let’s-Not-Plan-Shit-And-Just-See-What-Happens for almost ten years. It’s rubbing off.

I get home from the gym the next day and start up again. Finally I’m going to get done with this damn board. I finish the ribbon and consider it a small victory. Then I get to work on hammering the upholstery tacks into the board. About halfway through the package, I realize I need a hell of a lot more tacks. I’m going to run out. Son of a…

See, I’m not so good with the math, yo. Not that I measured shit on this project – but even if I had, I would have screwed it up.


At this point, my idiocy only spurs my desperation when it comes to getting this memo board from hell finished. I’m not going down without a fight, damn it. I grab my keys and head for the craft store. It’s on!

I get to the craft store and I’m pretty sure I’d grabbed the last package of this style of tac when I was there previously. Sure enough…none left on the little peg thing. Damn it! All was not lost, however. Thanks to bad customers or bad employees, I couldn’t tell which, I found two more packages of tacs mixed in where they shouldn’t have been. SCORE!!!

I drive home, wondering what the hell is wrong with me that every single step in this simple little project went horribly wrong. I pulled up in my driveway with huge sigh of relief. Now I know, without a doubt, the board will be finished tonight. Nothing else can stand in my way. I walk in, put down my purse and the bag from the craft store, and grabbed the board with one hand. It wouldn’t budge.

I’d hammered the damn memo board right into our coffee table.

Thank God our coffee table is old and crappy and I don’t care about it anymore. I just surrendered to the fact that I am, indeed, a Hot Mess Princess and finished up the board. Now I had a new problem: with all the tacks poking out the back, the board was now very stabby. Quick like a bunny, I grabbed some old cork tiles I had here and pushed those over the stabby parts. Voila! Done!!!

The "after" pic of my coffee table. Good thing it's on its last legs anyway!
The “after” pic of my coffee table. Good thing it’s on its last legs anyway!

Now it just looks like a French memo board. You can’t tell that the project took an entire week and pushed me to the brink. All you can see is a beautiful board that cost very little to put together.



So my words of advice are:  buy your own – or make sure you listen to the directions and measure!!! Learn from me, my darlings!

Ivory Twill Memo Board

Damask with Black Ribbon French/memo Board