The Power of the Spoken Word

Vacation time means packing up the family and heading someplace to have fun. Generally speaking, there is as much time spent getting ready and cleaning up at the end as there was fun in the middle. Making arrangements for the family members who must stay home (the four legged ones) is a really big deal. We travelled more when our daughter was at home because we didn’t have to board the dog. Now that she is out on her own, and our dog is joined at the hip with me every day, we are homebodies.

So when our daughter and her family are going on vacation and need help we are more than happy to oblige. There are just a few logical issues involved:

  • They live an hour away from us.
  • They have three dogs and a rabbit.
  • One of the dogs is a very old and sweet, but very large Labrador Retriever. They are caring for this dog for a family member and she has been through lots of turmoil lately.

Under normal circumstances we would just bring the animals here, but with the lab in the mix, this was not going to be a good idea. Maggie is not fond of large dogs and feels compelled to let them all know she is present and in charge. So, the only solution is for us to go there and house and pet sit for them. Let the games begin!

I packed to travel fifty miles across town like I was going half way around the world. Like all self respecting fiber fanatics, I packed my spinning and knitting first, then came the clothes. I planned on staying in the house most of the time so PJ’s would be my wardrobe staple. Two bags of entertainment and one bag of clothes seemed about right. Grab the dog, and off we go.

There are some places I can relax in and feel right at home – my mom’s house, my in-laws home, when they were alive, was a favorite, and my brother’s home are all places I love to go to decompress and I actually feel like I’ve had a vacation. So, why can’t I do this at my daughter’s house? I feel like company and I’m always uncomfortable. It is strange. But, I digress…

I pride myself on being a rather hip and with-it kind of near sixty year old woman. I know my way around technology. I’m on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. I’ve set up and run websites and have been a business owner. So, I should be able to handle most anything, right? Yeah, that is what I thought too. But to be safe I wanted a tour of the alarm system, the TV, and other things I thought might trip me up. While I was getting my tutorials my son-in-law was scurrying around trying to get everyone loaded in the car and out the door. Mix in a whining thirteen year old, barking dogs, and two younger girls both needing something from mom at that precise moment…it was mild chaos. Not wanting to appear old and unable to manage things I assured them I had it and shuttled them out the door.

Once on my own I first turned on the TV. Score! The coolest function they have with their cable provider is a remote you can talk to and it finds the channel. No scrolling up and down because I didn’t know the number. So, all is now well. I’ve got my shows, my knitting, and something cold to sip on. Life is good. Until I got hot. I tried talking to Google but that didn’t work, so I went to the thermostat. 

The first time we visited after the kids bought this house I was impressed with their Nest thermostat. It lights up whenever someone walks by. Cool. This is the one thing I didn’t ask about. When I look at it there is no obvious way to adjust it, and where I got the idea you adjust the temperature by talking into the darn thing is beyond me. Maybe I got so excited over talking to the remote that I thought I could just talk to anything in this house and it would do what I said. Such an amazing super power! Do you see where I’m going with this? 

Yes, you guessed it. I stood in front of the thermostat saying “72 degrees,” “cool to 72 degrees,” “turn on cool.” Thank goodness I was alone. I texted my daughter and asked how to do it. She explained you simply rotate the ring and it changes the temperature. I told her what I had been doing, laughing so hard at myself I almost had a personal issue. She had not even finished typing “it will be our secret” when the thirteen year old texts me, “OMGGGG HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA YOU WERE TALKING TO THE NEST” followed by laughing with tears emojis. So now, every time I see this commercial I see myself trying to cool the house with just the power of my voice. 

Ahhhh, it is humbling to be human.

Next up will be the travails of being short.

Laugh, Love, Live….Sheryl