This Family is a Hot Mess

I don’t know what more to say. We’re a hot mess, y’all. Not a day goes by when we don’t find ourselves in some kind of pickle. But last weekend was pretty spectacular as far as pickles go, and some of these stories are pretty funny, so I figured they were worth sharing. 😉

Mary F-ing Poppins…

I had a brush with death late Friday night. This is what I posted to Facebook:

It’s been hot and sunny here, and we’ve been using the umbrella on the balcony to provide a little shade. But of course, we forgot to shut it Friday night when we went to bed.

You might guess where this is going…

That night, I was awoken by thunder and lightning around 0200. I don’t know how I was so lucid but my first thought was “OMG, the umbrella!” So I run downstairs and see it’s been blown all the way across the patio. I try to wind it up but the metal is bent from the force of the wind. Now I need to lift it up out of the base to get it inside but the wind is really howling and the umbrella has a life of its own.

It’s impossible to control and I can feel myself lifting off the ground. The lightning is flashing all around me and it’s starting to rain. My brain is like “no, no, no – this can’t be happening. This can’t be how it ends!” Like Mary f-ing Poppins, flying off a third-floor balcony, soaking wet in my jammies, and possibly electrocuted. I call for help, but the door keeps shutting on me. It’s just me and this giant umbrella and gale-force winds.

Finally, Logan hears my cries and helps me wrestle the monstrosity into the house. And then I crawled back into bed, exhausted. But alive!

So yeah…I don’t usually break other people’s stuff, but when I do, there’s a crazy story involved. 🤦🏽‍♀️PS. Here’s the aftermath.

The umbrella in a sad state

Recycling, and doing it all wrong…

Ever since I got the book 101 Ways to Save the Planet in my Scholastic Book Club order as a kid, I’ve been sensitive to how our actions impact the environment. As a result, we’ve always recycled at home. In fact, the boys both won awards for their kindergarten science projects – Logan’s was on composting, and Brady’s was on recycling. Boom!

So I welcomed the country-wide commitment to recycling, and was not surprised to see four separate bins in our apartment:

  • One for composting
  • One for paper
  • One for recyclables
  • One for trash

No problem – we got this! And later that fine Saturday (after a week or so of being here) I thought I was nailing it, until I looked more closely at this public service announcement on the trash door:

Welp. It appears I’ve been screwing it up, because I’ve definitely trashed styrofoam, recycled cans and plastic bottles. I have no idea where the nearest Wertstoffhoff is, but we’re going to have to figure that out soon because we have an alarming collection of recycling set aside and it grows by the day!

This has also led to me Pinterest-ing recycling organization solutions for the home. I don’t know what that says about me, or what stage of life I’m in right now. Yikes.

Why can’t anyone remember their key?

So yeah…we covered Friday and Saturday. Now it’s time for early Sunday morning shenanigans. Father’s Day, to be exact. And in the wee hours of the morning, Phoebe jumped out of bed to ring the bell. This lets us know she wants to go outside. Typically, she sleeps in much later so this can only mean one thing – it’s an emergency.

Ralph gets dressed and takes her out. Apparently, she’s got the squirts. He’s just climbed back into bed when she rings the bell – again. It’s 0430. So he takes her out, and I fall back to sleep.

I wake up around 0700 and head downstairs for a cup of coffee. Ralph wasn’t in bed, so I fully expected to see him asleep on the couch. But no Ralph. I give it a few, thinking that perhaps he’s decided to go for a long walk. Then I text him. No answer, but this is not unusual.

At around 0811, there’s a faint knock at the door. It’s Ralph. He’s been trapped outside for more than three hours, having forgotten his keys and his phone. It was only when a fellow apartment dweller opened her window that he was able to beg her to buzz him in, but not until after a thorough eye-roll when he tried to explain in broken Deutsch that his frau was asleep and not answering the intercom.

Ralph claimed he buzzed and buzzed, but I swore the intercom never rang. Not a peep whatsoever…

Needless to say, not a great start to Father’s Day.

But wait…there’s more…

Ralph recovered from being locked out, and after a fun day of exploring the village of Herrenberg with our friend Marie, we went home.

It was time to troubleshoot why the intercom didn’t work.

I had a pretty good idea of what had happened – someone had pressed the mute button. A quick glance at the intercom revealed that this was indeed the case. Ralph was fiddling around by the front door so I turned in his direction and announced that I’d found the issue. But just as the words left my mouth, the power to the apartment went off.

Apparently Ralph thought something electrical had tripped, so instead of looking to the intercom he jumped straight to the fuse box. “I don’t know what happened – I just pushed the test button and I can’t get anything back on!”

So now I had to call our gracious hosts to let them know that we’d managed to shut the power off, only a day after the umbrella fiasco. I was mortified, but they were so kind, and together we worked through the process to get the system working again.

What a weekend!

I could go on and share that the rest of the week was filled with other mishaps – like my first time getting yelled at by a German man, and getting myself locked out – but then we’d never get to the fun stuff, so I’ll stop here. I’d say that I may have triggered a self-fulfilling prophecy by naming this blog Delightfully Disoriented, however I’ve been a magnet for disaster way before this blog was a thing! 😉

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