Tag Archives: sister

Did you see the unicorn porn?!

So yesterday, I treated you to a hilarious picture of a unicorn with a unibrow on a unicycle. We all laughed. Remember?

Under the auspices of making sure that posts are being posted properly, but truly as the result of extreme narcissism, I subscribe to my own blog on Feedly. (It’s super satisfying to see the posts pop up in my feed– I get to see them how other people get to see them and I love it!) This morning, my unicorn picture popped up.


Any other Feedly subscribes out there? If so, my sincerest apologies!

Except obviously I’m not that sorry, because if I were, I wouldn’t be posting it here:

Unicorn Porn
Unicorn Porn

Oh dang. That bike seat plus cropping. Well, that’s just unfortunate.

And hilarious to me.

I’ll forgive you if you click unsubscribe now…

(please don’t unsubscribe… please don’t unsubscribe…)

Also yesterday, I want kind of crazy with alliteration. I just love writing that way! And I kept thinking about it all night last night… until the reason I love it so much popped into my head. One word:


{Source-- because of course there's a whole Wiki page on it!}
{Source— because of course there’s a whole Wiki page on it!}

Growing up, this was truly my favorite game (and I totally want to play it right now… can we at our next game night, friends? I will buy it and bring it AND bring a bottle of wine so you don’t all hate me!) and we played it all. the. time.

It was a blast. For me, anyway. In large part though, the blast was had because I took advantage of young children. Let me tell you how.

My cousin Spruce and I are relatively close in age (fun fact: Spruce was born on the exact same day– month, day, and year!– as my husband!) and we loved more than anything to gang up on our little sisters. Fortunately for us, our little sisters pretty much worshiped us and were willing to play just about anything even if it meant that they had to be Swahili nerds that got electrocuted by a phone cord, run around as Dr. Pig and Dr. Snort, or get their butts handed to them in a rousing game of Scattergories.

Have you played Scattergories before? The basic premise is that you have to come up with words that start with a given letter and are in a certain category. For example, you roll the letter D, the category is Movies, you could write Die Hard for one point or Dirty Dancing for two. If someone else writes the same thing as you, they cancel each other out and neither of you gets any points. What you couldn’t write would be something like dumb Disney movies. The Disney might get you a point if your companions are feeling generous… the dumb? Not so much… it’s an adjective.

As an evil, conspiratorial child, the trick was knowing what adjectives were, how to use them, and how to lie. Spruce and I went nuts with the alliteration. Letter S, category scary things, our answer: seven slippery snakes slithering slowly (5 points!), but when our poor little sisters wrote down sand storm we’d scream adjective!!!!! and allow them, appearing to be benevolent, a point for the storm. Even though the sand would totally have been a point because it describe a particular type of storm. (For the purpose of distinction scary storm would legitimately not have counted).

We’ve chatted before about how I’m a jerk because I love (oy, my poor, poor little sister! she has put up with so much! and btw, you can click on the hyperlinked “jerk” if you want to see her underwear again… just saying…) and I think this is just another example of that. Because to be honest, there can’t possibly have been any pleasure in beating the pants off our little sister when we’d cheated against them so very, very badly… and yet… I remember these events with great, great joy. Therefore, it must have been the torture and the cheating itself that I loved. In-ter-es-an-te. (Dis-tur-ban-te???)


***All sample categories and answers are purely fictional, made up for the purpose of story telling and to protect the innocent. The letters? Not so much. Like a D needs any protection. Please.

A jerk! Because I love…

I have an amazing little sister and I love her so very, very much.

And because of that… this:

Abby's UndiesUNDERWEAR!

This is a guided tour of my little sister’s underwear that moves from conservative granny panties on the left up to butt floss-style thongs on the right.  She came home one day to this.

I’m not sure if my favorite part was the anticipation of Abby walking up the stairs and finding the underwear or the moment I heard her scream… knowing what it was about.

Either way…


And this was how it always was and probably always will be.  I tease.  A lot.  But for me to tease, I’ve got to be comfortable.  And for me to be comfortable, I’ve got to love.  So in a round about way, I’m a jerk… because I love.

It’s funny, really, how crazy much I love my sister these days.  Because it’s a far cry from when she first came in to this world.  I still remember the day she was born.  I was so mad that the stupid baby was making my mom stay in the hospital when she should have been home with me.  I was angry with her before I even saw her, despite the big sister classes with baby dolls and all of that.  My 3-year-old self could barely stand it.

And then she came home, and things went steadily downhill from there.  Not because there was anything wrong with my baby sister (except for the biting… there was a lot of biting…), but because I was no longer the center of the universe and I didn’t like that feeling.

So, in my desperation, I developed a series of mysterious medical maladies that our rather astute pediatrician eventually diagnosed as Abby-itis.  (Blast!  Foiled again!)

And so it went, for many years.  I must have been some sort of torturer in a past life, because I delighted in tormenting my little sister… and eventually my brother when he came along.  Evil was my middle name and I wasn’t even allowed to laugh in the car since it usually indicated I’d done something awful.  (Rachel Ann!  Stop it, whatever you’re doing!)

But, despite all of that, my sister and I grew into inseparable friends and it is my mission in life to make sure that if I ever have a baby girl, I’ll never stop having babies until she has a sister.  Because truly, there’s nothing better.

Nothing better for me, anyway.  Ask Abby, owner of all that underwear taped to the wall, and you may get a different story 😉


I suppose as long as I’ve got that picture I should really tell you about what you don’t see…

In addition to being a grade A jerk face as a child, I also tormented my younger sister by being exceptionally territorial.  And our room was always split in half one way or the other.

Did you notice the glow-in-the-dark stars on the ceiling?  Right.  Those were only on my half.  And I refused to share.  Refused!

However, I did throw Ab a little bit of a bone.  My rule was this: if a star fell from the ceiling and she got to it first, she could have it.  We had bunk beds in our room and Abby was on the top.  So on that rare occasion that a star fell, she’d come scurrying down the ladder and head for the star– Smeagol-style.  (My preeeeeccccious…..)

And the evidence is still there on the ceiling in my parents’ house to this day.  It always makes me laugh… an evil, evil laugh.  Because I still love very, very much!

My sister called me homely, and I think she’s right.

A few years ago, I was at my parents’ house for the Christmas holidays, baking cookies in the kitchen and singing along to Christmas carols on their early 1990s stereo system when my sister looked at me sweetly, cocked her head like the most adorable little puppy that she is, and said:

“Oh, Rachel, you are so homely!”

Oh my goodness.  Could not.  stop.  LAUGHING!!

It would be easy to be upset, but I know my little sister and despite her brilliance (no, seriously, she is a genius chemical engineer), her vocabulary is a wee bit limited on account of her general dislike of reading when not absolutely necessary.  What she meant to say, and essentially thought she was saying, was that I was being homey.  Domestic, if you will.  Homey.  Ahhhh…  what a difference a single letter can make.  (Remind me to tell you a great joke about celibacy my dad sent me one time…)

Anyway, it’s hard for me not to think of that day, those feelings, every time I do something “homely.”  And since I’ve moved to Wisconsin, I’ve gotten homelier and homelier 😉  (And NOT just because I do most of my clothes shopping locally.  Although, I am concerned because either Penny’s clothes are getting cuter, or I’ve been here too long…)

In the past couple of years, I taught myself to sew (yay, books!  They really can teach you anything!) and to really bake, like from scratch-scratch.  (Scratch-scratch is essentially the opposite of done done.)  More recently, I’ve been doing some crazy experimenting in the kitchen, and being the scientist that I am, here is my lab notebook:

Cookbook in Progress

Love the mess, the work in progress, the chance to experiment again and again, and that unlike PCR, my life doesn’t depend on it.

Even more recently, I learned to freeze corn.  I know what you’re thinking: Seriously?  Like put corn in a freezer?  But no!  Not just that!  Like I went to the farm (lots more on that later), picked a couple rows, shucked the ears, cut the kernels off the cob, roasted it, portioned it, and froze it to eat all winter.  Like the ants.  (Please tell me you know Aesop’s fables, otherwise this is about to get confusing.)  I’ve always been more the grasshopper, waltzing my way down to the store to buy some corn in the middle of winter (or grabbing it from my mother-in-law’s always-well-stocked-with-delicious-things freezer).  But this… this was a thousand times more satisfying!  And my house smelled so good!

With this recent success under my belt, things are about to get even homelier.  I recently completed a test batch of homemade pizza sauce with tomatoes from my mother-in-law’s garden (seriously, what can’t she do?!) and it. was. AMAZING!  Best homemade pizza I have ever made.  My husband agreed through his mouth full!  Next up: learn to CAN!  (And then after that, maybe I’ll can can, but we’ll see…)  I can’t wait for the gorgeous rows of mason jars to be lined up in my basement pantry!  (I’m planning to make spaghetti sauce too, so if you’ve got extra tomatoes in your garden, you let me know and I’ll take care of them for you!)

I may be homely, but this DIY thing is so ridiculously satisfying to me.  I was a little bit bored for a minute when I finally got out of grad school and entered the real world (i.e. left academia).  What do you do with the rest of your time when you’re only working 40 hours a week?  I watched a lot of tv at first, but then that bored me too.  (Note: that is totally NOT a dig on tv, I still love it, and thanks to the magic of DVR, I still watch a considerable amount.  Especially when Lifetime, Hallmark, and ABC Family start playing holiday movies– I am such a sap!)  So I started to learn stuff, do things from scratch, and now I can’t find enough hours in the day!  I feel like every little thing I take on leads to something else and my life just keeps unfolding in new and exciting directions right before my eyes.  (Ok, freezing corn may not be what you might consider new and/or exciting, but for me, this is a big deal.)

Once upon a time, I thought that a life full of “simple” things and “mere” happiness in the absence of recognition and “success” wouldn’t be enough for me.  I stressed over every little choice and the abstract idea of the future weighed heavily on my mind.  But I love the simplicity, I love the satisfaction that comes from hard work combined with creativity, learning, and experimentation.  I love doing my own thing.  As far as I know, a scientific research writer slash blogger has never been asked to host Saturday Night Live, and I doubt that I’ll be the first (it’s not like I’m a model slash actor up for a slashie or something, le sigh…), but I’m ok with that.  I’m more than ok with that, because my definition of success has changed dramatically over the years (oh man, that’s a complicated one, worthy of it’s own series, perhaps) and I find that I really prefer going with the flow rather than constantly trying to swim upstream.  I’m a lady, not a salmon, after all.  (And maybe part dinosaur, but it’s hard to say for sure…)


DISCLAIMER: No little sisters were physically hurt in the writing of this post.  Although, she may be feeling embarrassed.  Seriously though, she’s too cute for words and doesn’t have a malicious bone in her body (nor does she know what malicious means– omg, I can’t stop!) so I know for an absolute fact that she had no idea the difference between homely and homey when she said it.  Which leads me to another funny story that is just begging to be told right now.

Once upon a time, my beautiful littler sister was honeymoon shopping with her fiance (now husband).  She was surfing the web, researching locations, doing what engaged ladies do, when she stopped short, got on her I’m concerned voice, and said to us, totally seriously:

“All these places say they’re exotic, but what if we aren’t really in to that sort of thing?!”

Because, you know, tropical flowers, beautiful sunsets, azure seas, and white sand beaches… it’s all so scandalous!  So, I had to reply, “Exotic, Shabs… not erotic.”  And then I laughed.  For years.  Literally.  Like if that scene pops into my head while I’m standing in line at the grocery store, I’m going to laugh out loud about it.  I just can’t help it.  Oh, my little sister, she’s really the best– you’d love her!  (And you will love her, because keep reading and I will make you!)