the (1)It’s the most wonderful time of the year!  Actually, that’s totally not true.  The most wonderful time of the year is summer, when it’s 100 degrees and I’m sporting a glowing tan (and a margarita).

I’m not sure why people think Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year, but I’ll go with it.  It’s an excuse to go to a bunch of holiday parties and stuff copious amounts of desserts from the buffet in my purse.

Don’t think I also don’t do that with liquor.  I totally do.  A flask works nicely to accomplish that task and it’s unassuming when shoved inside your coat pocket.

How did I learn this trick?  My parents.  Duh.  You recall what I found in their pantry.  If you don’t, please read about it.  I’m still chuckling.


I know you’ve been fretting about the holidays and what you should buy your favorite blogger.

Me, a-hole.  I’m talking about me.

Because I’m so selfless, I’m going to tell you all the things you should buy me.  I’m  so caring like that.

photo credit: Daniel*1977 via photopin cc

photo credit: Daniel*1977 via photopin cc

Before I give you my list, you’re probably wondering what I’m going to give you in return.

Um, this blog isn’t enough?  A few times a week I write random posts about absolutely nothing.  Isn’t that enough?

It should be.

Without further babbling, here’s a few things I’m demanding requesting for Christmas.  Note:  You don’t have to get just one thing.

Go crazy and get the whole list. The joy it will bring me will be worth it.

A book deal


Okay, so I’m IN this book, but I want a book all to myself! But seriously. You should still buy this one.

Yeah, I’m shocked I don’t have a book deal either.  It isn’t for lack of trying.  I’ve been writing sub-par content for two years now.  You’d think publishers and book agents would be knocking down my door.

If book agents and publishers are pretending to be people putting Chinese take-out menus on my door, then they’re definitely knocking down my door. Otherwise, not so much.

Pajama work pants

Why can’t I dress up yet still be comfortable?  They’ve somehow managed to do this with jeans yet I can’t get a pair of wool blend pants that don’t dig into my belly button?

Someone needs to make that happen.  That someone is you.


This is a no-brainer and I’m sure you’ve already purchased this for me.  Good work.  Now go buy another bottle for me.  You know one won’t be enough.

Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups eggs

Yeah, it’s Christmas.  I know, but that’s why I want these eggs so badly.

A sweater for Jerry and his Gangsta Gnome Boyz

gangstas in the snowAs you know, I have a gang of gnomes protecting my house and running illegal activities from behind my hydrangia bushes.  It’s the middle of winter now and those thugs are cold.

Jerry, the head gangsta, told me he’d like a hand-knitted sweater for him and his boyz.  Even though they’re dealing hot merchandise, they still get cold at night.

Wow.  I just asked for something that wasn’t even for me.  I’m so thoughtful.  This is yet another reason you should get me everything I want on my list.

What are you waiting for? Get on it.

Until then, I will continue to entertain you with my antics.  Isn’t that the best gift of all?


There's a third one!

There’s a third one!

It’s been quiet around the hydrangea bush at the Newlin house.  Maybe a little too quiet.  Jerry Yardcia and his Gnome Boyz have been noticeably quiet recently, despite their suspected illegal activities.

For those of you not familiar with Jerry, he is the gangsta gnome who runs security at my house.  He also runs a variety of illegal rackets, but I will deny that if asked.


Jerry Yardcia is a former accountant turned gantsta.  He’s the head gnome in charge and his “special” cousin Jernome is his right hand man, despite the fact he physically stands to the left of Jerry.

Did I mention Jernome was special?

I told myself the peacefulness around the house was nothing to worry about.  I hoped Jerry left the gangsta life of crime and turned over a new leaf.  (He definitely turned over a few hydrangea leaves, as that plant seems to be dying despite my numerous life-saving attempts, which really just entails watering it when I remember to…which isn’t often.)

Jerry is always counting dollas.

Jerry is always counting dollas.

I told myself it was possible Jerry grew sick of keeping inventory of hash and cocaine and instead returned to keeping inventory of debits and credits.

(NOTE: Debits are ALWAYS to the left and credits are ALWAYS to the right.  Don’t even get him started on this touchy subject. DEBIT AND CREDIT JOKES ARE NEVER FUNNY TO JERRY.)

If only leaving a life of crime was an option for Jerry.  Apparently the thug life got ahold of him good…just like it did Tu-Pac.

Instead of turning away from it, Jerry is embracing his criminal ways and bringing new gangstas on board.  Matt and I were not made aware of this development.

Unbegnownst to us, Jerry invited a new gansta to our gnome.

Now that I think about it, I’m not sure how I thought Jerry Yardcia made enough money to live the lavish lifestyle he does.  After all, that sweet medallion around his neck and his flip phone don’t pay for themselves.

The only way he could afford such luxuries was to have a money-making scheme on the down gnome.  (Okay, that one was a stretch.)

Recently I found out what that scheme was, as the new Gnome boy arrived with the start of football season.  Meet the thug known only as “Gnomber One Fan.”

Gnome and tv

He always has sports on the mind…and on the TV

What role does Gnomber One Fan play in Jerry’s gang of misfits?

Yup.  You guessed it.  He’s the bookie.  He runs the numbers racket and he seems to have a gy-gnomous book of business.

Gnomber One tries to talk football with Shady Jack by giving him a toy football.  SJ isn't amused.

Gnomber One tries to talk football with Shady Jack by giving him a toy football. SJ isn’t amused.

Okay, so maybe “bookie” isn’t the right gnomenclature for his job, but what’s the politically correct term for a gnome heavily involved in loansharking and betting?

Ah yes:  a gnombers runner.

The gnome only gnown as “Gnomber One Fan” appears here to stay, at least for the duration of football season.

In my brief conversations with him, he gnows a lot about football and stats.  Perhaps he was Jerry’s assistant in the accounting world way-back-when.

As you can tell by the Mizzou logo across his abgnomen, he’s a Missouri fan, which is good, as I certainly couldn’t have a KU fan living in my hydrangeas.  My compost pile?  Sure.

My hydrangeas?  Never.

Don’t worry though.  Gnomber One doesn’t have a heart of gnome.  He knows when to stop and smell the roses…or in this case, the vinca.


Gnomber One still likes flowers.  I caught him like this earlier today.

Gnomber One still likes flowers. I caught him like this earlier today.

So if you’re looking for someone to place bets with this football season, come on over to the Newlin gnome and we will get you set up.  Of course, you’ll have to throw Jerry the proper gansta sign before he will let you into the house.  After all, he’s a gansta gnome, not a pushover.

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Jerry in his favorite surveillance spot.

Jerry in his favorite surveillance spot.

As many of you know, I have a gansta gnome guarding and protecting my home at all times.  

(This is not to be confused with the crazy Bachelorette contestant Kasey, who guards and protects women’s hearts.  My gnome doesn’t do that. He also doesn’t get crazy tattoos while on the season of a reality show.  He’s smarter than that…and he’s a gnome.)

My gansta gnome is Jerry Yardcia, and he keeps me safe from the dangers and threats of living in the suburbs.  He’s pretty hard core.  If you don’t believe me, look at his medallion.

If that doesn’t say bad ass, I don’t know what does.

Since Jerry took over security for the Newlin household, things have been safe and quiet, save for the occasional unwanted humping.  (Our dog Max likes Jerry…a lot.)

Despite the canine advances, lately Jerry looked lonely and in need of a friend.  After all, he can only talk on his mini cell phone so long before the battery goes dead.

We decided something had to be done, and Jerry needed a friend.  Unfortunately, we didn’t know how to go about getting him one, as we didn’t know what type of friend he would prefer.  A talkative friend?  Funny? Quiet?  Old?  Statue?  Bird bath?

Fortunately, we didn’t have to make that decision.  One day, I came home from work and looked Jerry’s direction, hoping to get a report of the happenings of the neighborhood.  I always throw him our secret gang sign so he knows it’s me, as if there’s another woman in a stained dress with Cheeto-stained fingers who frequents the suburbs.

As I threw our super-secret sign of recognition to Jerry, I noticed he was not alone.  He had a friend.  A friend who looked remarkably like him.  Here’s what I saw.

jerry and jernome

They’re multiplying!

Obviously, Jerry’s friend was shy.  He was also a master of disguise, as I could barely see his gy-gnomous head hiding behind the flower bush.

I came inside and asked Matt where the second a-gnomeonyous gnome came from. (Yes, attempting to change “anonymous” into a word using “gnome” was a bit ambitious, but a girl’s gotta try.)

I don’t know.  He just showed up and has been chilling with Jerry all day.”

Indeed.  They appeared to be besties.

Although I was happy for Jerry and his new friend, I wanted to find out more about this mysterious guy.  I had so many questions:  Who was he?  How did he get there? Was this who Jerry was always talking to on his cell?


Jernome looking….well…simple.

I approached them both, greeted them, and asked to speak to the new gnome alone.

Jerry complied with my request but told me to keep it short.  I reminded him that he is less than a foot tall, so I had no choice but to keep it short.

NOTE:  Jerry is not a fan of short-jokes.  It’s a delicate subject for him. LESSON LEARNED.

When I was a-gnome with the new gnome he told me he was Jerry’s cousin, and his name was Jer(g)nome.  That explained why they looked so much a like.  (That, and they were both manufactured in the same plant in Thailand.)

Jernome is a man of little words, and not just because he’s only a foot tall.  He was noticeably quiet about his story and where he cam from.

In all fairness, his timidness could be because he’s a statue.

In an effort to get him to tell me more, I got out the garden hose and turned on the water.  All of a sudden, Jernome because far more talkative.

Allegations of water-boarding were made, but those are obviously unwarranted and I will deny any and all such charges.

From what I gathered from Jernome’s quiet demeanor (except when it came to water), he is…ahem….a bit slow.

To put it another way; if our dog Max was a gnome, he would be Jernome.  Come to think of it, if Max was a gnome, he’d still have the same IQ but would probably lick his junk less.

Our sweet, sweet, Max

Our sweet, sweet, Max

Although Jernome didn’t come out and say it, I got the feeling Jerry gave him a job because Jernome couldn’t get a job anywhere else.  I considered suggesting he apply at my favorite Greek restaurant, as the waiters there have no personality and can’t seem to understand that I always want extra Tzatziki sauce on my gyro.


So for now, Jernome will stay and be Jerry’s wingman.  I suspect his only job will be standing around looking pathetic.  That’s yet another thing he and Max have in common.

I also suspect Jerry will send him on mindless errands just to keep him busy.  So the next time I see Jerry eating a sub sandwich with onions on it, I won’t remind him that onions make him gassy, which kills my hydrangeas.

Instead, I’ll know that Jernome messed up the order, and although Jerry will cut any bitch who stiffs him on a drug deal, he’ll eat onions and endure farts if it means Jernome feels needed.*

*If enduring farts makes one feel needed, then my husband is the most needed man in America.

dog runningWho? Who? Who?

No really. Who?  It’s a totally legitimate question and I want answers!  Yes, there’s a story.  Isn’t there always?

First off, I will readily admit I’m a sleep walker. I’m also a sleep talker, and if you ask my husband, a sleep scolder and a sleep nagger too.

What can I say? I’m dedicated to my wifely duties and I’m an overachiever.

I can have entire conversations while sleeping and the person talking to me probably has no idea I’m sound asleep. I might be asleep right now as I type this. You’ll never know.

My sleep activity doesn’t necessarily have to do with the fact I get about 5 hours of sleep a night, although I’m sure that doesn’t help.

mphI think its just because I’m always going a million miles an hour, and can’t slow down, even when I’m sleeping.

I can, however, slow down significantly, practically to a snail’s pace, if doing so will get me out of something I don’t want to do. Like clean the bathroom….or talk about my feelings.

I’ve always been a sleep walker but lately I think I’ve been doing better. I suppose there’s no way to measure that for sure, but since I haven’t been charged with assaulting the neighbor’s cat while wearing only a house dress, I’d say I haven’t been sleep walking as much.

The cat wears the house dress, not me. That would just be weird.

So last night, I went to bed about 1:15 and I woke up at 2:00 to Bentley whining. This is not an uncommon occurrence, as he is a super diva and regularly demands things such as fresh water and a pillow fluff.

I’m not kidding.

Bentley on couch

See what I mean? Diva.

polar bearWhile I tended to his every need, I realized Shady Jack wasn’t at the foot of the bed. I knew he was there when I went to bed less than an hour ago, so I decided to investigate.

I walked into the kitchen and looked out into the back yard and saw the light was on outside.

That was strange, as I’m crazy about turning off lights. If I don’t need it, I turn if off. I don’t want polar bears in the North Pole dying because I want to get a better look at what slutty outfit the neighbor is wearing across the street.

It’s easier to spy with the lights off anyway.

I walked over and turned off the lights, apologizing out loud to the polar bears. That’s when I saw Shady Jack’s face staring back at me…from the other side of the door.

This is a re-enactment.  It's not from the night in question.  This was taken during the day.

This is a re-enactment. It’s not from the night in question. This was taken during the day.

jack with toy

He prefers to snuggle with his toys.

Um, what?

I opened the door to let him back in and he seemed unphased by the incident. I tried to get him to tell me who let him out, but I suspect he didn’t want to embarrass me or put me on the spot.

He also seemed more interested in licking his crotch. I can’t say I blame him.

I shrugged it off and went back to bed, grabbing a few cookies before I went.

When I woke up this morning, I asked Matt if he let the dogs out last night and he said no. I believed him because I have to do everything around here.  He suggested I did it in another one of my sleep walking episodes.

He then proceeded to tell me the front door was unlocked this morning when he left for the gym. He may have just been throwing it in my face that he went to the gym this morning, but whatever.  I sleep walk.  That’s cardio.

I was concerned about the unlocked door because I’m crazy about locking the door.  It’s one of the last things I do before I go to bed.

That, and eat some cookies.

And then it hit me. Jerry did it. I probably got up in the night and we had an engaging discussion about the tax code and why he hates tax basis accounting.

Jerry close upAs a side note, don’t ever bring up no-par value stock to Jerry. Lesson learned the hard way.

I bet Jerry came in to take a break from guarding the house, and after our enlightening talk, he decided to let the dogs out so I could go back to sleep.

He then sensed danger at the front of the house, so he returned to his post to secure the premises, thus, forgetting Shady Jack.

He left the front door unlocked because he’s a fricking garden gnome and can’t reach up to lock it. Duh.

These types of problem solving skills are what make me a champion at Clue.

I suspect this closes the case on who let the dogs out. It was Jerry. Someone alert the Baha Men so they can stop asking that obnoxious question.

However, I won’t know for sure it was him for another week, as that’s how long it takes the local police to bring me up on indecent exposure charges.


That gnome isBelieve it or not, I’m not a garden gnome kind of gal.  I know, it’s hard to believe, as me and my moo-moo dress (sans bra) totally scream “I have lots of magic trolls and celestial balls outside my house!”

Actually, I literally scream that, but it’s only to keep the crazy neighbors away.  It works too, because we don’t have any crazy neighbors.  Wait a minute…maybe I’m the crazy neighbor…

Regardless of whether I reside in Crazytown, one thing is certain: I’ve fallen in love.  Allow me to explain.

Saturday, Matt and I went to Walmart.  Yes, Walmart.  I know.  We obviously hate America, but we also hate high prices.

We also hate ourselves whenever we go there, but the hate dissolves quickly when we realize we can toot around the store on a motorized cart (assuming they aren’t already checked out by fat people.)

This recent trip was for plants.  We needed flowers to spruce up our house.  Flowers were our attempt to hide the fact that our shutters need to be painted and our front steps are suffering from a bad case of scoliosis.

Enter geraniums and daisies.

As we walked around the gardening section of Walmart, cursing ourselves and our love of a bargain, I ran across this fine looking gentleman:

Jerry close up

Bad A$$.

There he was.  Standing on a shelf, looking all street-rat and tough, yet there was a softness to him.

Matt was a few aisles over, and if we were in a normal store, I would have politely called or texted him and asked him to join me in aisle 7.  However, when in Rome, do as the Romans, right? So when in Walmart, yell loudly to people in your party because no one gives a $hit.

MAAAAAATTTT!” I yelled, in my best scratchy voice, trying to mimic the sound of years of cheap cigarettes and alcohol abuse.

What?” he screamed, from approximately five feet away.

Check this out, yo.”  I said, trying to embrace the essence of the gnome.

Whoa!  That gnome is gansta!” was all my darling husband could muster up for a response.

I knew we had to have him. (The gnome, not my husband.)  We adopted him immediately and give him the home he clearly needed.

As we drove home, I looked over at him, all buckled in safely in the front seat.  (Matt sat in the back.)

Jerry in seatbelt

You’re never too gansta for safety.

What was his story?  What made him get to this lowly place?  Well, maybe it wasn’t a totally lowly place, as he was on the second to top shelf at Walmart before we rescued him, which is a pretty high rank in the retail world.

I looked into his unevenly and sloppily painted eyes and I saw his story.  Not really, I just saw the imperfection in the paint, but whatever.  Follow along.

Is that a TI-86?  Hell yeah it is!

Is that a TI-86? Hell yeah it is!

His name is Jerry, and he was a corporate accountant for a large company before he turned to thug life.

Jerry was a fierce accountant, with a specialty in stocks and an eye for earnings tax.

They called him “Journal Entry Jerry,” and he ruled his accounting staff with an iron fist.  (And an iron internal control system.)

But one day, he traded in his calculator for a Colt and had an overall breakdown.

(See what I did there?  “Overall breakdown” because he’s wearing overalls, but he also had a breakdown “over all.”  Yeah, it’s brilliant.  Give it a minute to sink in.)

So what would be so horrible to cause Jerry to shun secured transactions?  What was so bad to make him turn a blind eye to budgets?

I didn’t know, so I turned to my ever insightful husband for answers.

What do you think made Jerry go gansta?” I whispered softly, making sure Jerry didn’t overhear my inquiry.  I didn’t want to offend him, especially if he wasn’t ready to talk about his past.

I’ll tell you what made him lose it.  Cuz bitches be trippin‘,” was all my sweet groom said.

Yes, I married that guy.  I know.

Aren't we a cute couple?

Aren’t we a cute couple?

But maybe he’s right.  Maybe Jerry had enough of the corporate world and women always sweatin’ him for cash and capital gains.  Maybe Jerry wanted to go to a different life.

I can’t fault him for that.  If I could go to work everyday wearing denim overalls and a sweet medallion, I’d do it too.

I let Jerry know we weren’t there to judge.

Then I looked a little closer and realized that although Jerry had gone gangsta, he still had hints of his old life.  They were there, but hidden a bit.

For instance, I’m not sure if Jerry has a gun in the hand that’s in his pocket.  He might, or he might not.  It could just be an abacus he uses to count his cash from pimpin’ hos.

Either way, if you put a debit where a credit should be, Jerry will still cut you.  He’s not above it.  Seriously.  Or maybe he’ll just send you a polite, yet strongly worded letter, advising of your error.

But that’s not all.  Do you see Jerry’s red bandanna?  It’s yet another throw back to his number crunching days.

Jerry and Max, sharing a laugh.

Jerry and Max, sharing a laugh.

He’s trying to make a statement with the red by saying “You don’t want to be in the red when it comes to your fincances.”

As much as he tries, Jerry can’t break away from his true love; numbers.

So we’ve decided to adopt Jerry and give him a new home, where he’ll always be loved, but will also serve a purpose.

We put him in the best place ever.  A place where you might not know he’s there, but he’ll be watching.

We live in a house built in the late 1940s, and it has three steps you must walk up to get to the front door.  If you look to the left and down, you will find Jerry.

He’s hiding in the bushes, out of plain view from the street, as he’s hiding from the po-po.  However, he’s watching the comings and goings of our house, protecting us from danger, or maybe just an audit.

I’ve named him Jerry Yardcia, as that’s the domain over which he will preside.  Look at that swagger.

Jerry in yard

His eyes follow you when you move.

Here are a few other places Jerry has been spotted around our house.  He’s everywhere.  Yes, indeed.  Jerry Yardcia will always be watching, with a phone in hand, ready to call the IRS.    

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