Let’s get trashy

It is once again Trash Grabbing Season in our house. I missed the opportunity to tout the trash grabber as a fabulous Father’s Day gift again this year, but I cannot overstate the value we have gotten out of this handy item. It’s the perfect post-dinner activity – especially if you find a regular walk to be slightly ho-hum. Who wants to gaze at beautiful surroundings, or have a meaningful conversation, when you can instead focus on finding and touching other people’s garbage?

My husband loves the grabber I got him last year so much he bought a second one. Now both of the kids can use one. Here’s a photo of my two-year-old using a trash grabber.

photo 5

If you have never experienced the pain of watching a toddler try to use a trash grabber, let me describe it for you. That piece of trash will disintegrate, turn into dust and reappear as a tulip before your child manages to pick it up.

On the upside, having two grabbers has introduced an intoxicating level of competitiveness to our Trash Walks. Now we race to see who has the dexterity to pick up the smallest pieces of garbage first. If we win, we pump our fists in the air and yell “BOOM Shocka Locka!” And then we make tons of lame jokes about how we like to ‘trash talk’ one another (get it? GET IT?!?).

By ‘we’ I obviously mean ‘me,’ and yes – my family grows tired of me quickly.

I admit there is a risk that this competitive garbage picking hobby could become unhealthy. The other day it occurred to me that I could throw a few pieces of trash out my car window to give myself an edge for that evening’s walk. I didn’t do it! Calm down. But I do have a wide array of garbage in my car at all times, so I’m really hoping I can resist the temptation.

The week in review

The neighbor kid left on a 5-week trip with her family this week. I confess I’m grateful for the break. In the past week she invited herself over for dinner multiple times, made a mess of my deck with a craft-project-turned-nightmare, told my daughter that freckles are ugly, and took the liberty of explaining to my child the concept of ‘slavery’ (worst history lesson I’ve ever heard). Maybe it’s just my freckles talking, but I’m hoping they enjoy their trip so much they extend it.


I went shopping this week for the first time in forever. Apparently these pants, and others like it, are now in style:


Who is responsible for this? Had I known, I would’ve just stayed home and sewn my own pants out of old pillowcases. Also, I don’t understand fashion.


For Father’s Day I gave my husband a trash grabber. You know, one of those giant picker-upper sticks that you always wonder, Who the hell has one of those things? Now we do.

It was one of the most well-received gifts I’ve ever given him. He practically leapt out of his seat when he saw it. I think he even started clapping. Granted, this is the man who gave me a battery charger and recycling bins for our first Christmas together (romance!), so perhaps his definition of a ‘great gift’ is slightly askew from the norm.

Now we spend our evenings walking around the neighborhood picking up trash. My daughter plays the role of Garbage Scout, running ahead to find wrappers, scraps, and if we’re lucky – the discarded contents of an entire Jack in the Box meal. By the way, WHO are the people in this day and age who finish their meal and then toss the rest out the window?! I guess they are my neighbors, that’s who.


If you are in the market for a family activity and/or gift and/or reason to make your neighbors stare at you, I highly recommend a trash grabber. Yes, it teaches kids to care for the environment, and that is wonderful. But it also offers the opportunity to teach them about the dangers of things like smoking, drinking and sex. We’ve already found countless cigarette butts, a few beer cans, and I am dreading the day we encounter a used condom. By now you are probably asking yourself – Where the hell does she live? A dumpster? Apparently yes, I do.


Remember when I said I was attempting to start a garden? Well guess what. I did it and it’s actually growing! The other night we enjoyed a tasty salad using garden-fresh lettuce.


We also added beef to it because we are not rabbits. (apologies to any vegetarian readers)

Seriously if I can successfully cultivate a garden, anyone can. I have accidentally pulled out crops when I meant to pull weeds, and I routinely ask questions like, “So where’s the part we can eat?” I am clueless. But it’s been surprisingly easy.*

*My husband did the hard stuff. He also made the salad. I am just taking credit for it all because he doesn’t have a blog.


I had 1 good hair day this week out of 7, so this new cut is really working for me. My husband may or may not have said I looked like a Muppet the other day. He may or may not have been right. He also may or may not wake up to discover a trash grabber clamped on his man bits if he doesn’t ease up on the hair commentary.