Emmalyn was here for a visit during Easter.

And she knew that Auntie was having a hard time coming up with blog ideas.

God bless Emmalyn.

My sister and brother-in-law got here around 11 pm the day before Easter. My sister came flitting across the airport to meet me pushing Emmalyn, who was coming out of a Benadryl induced high. I thought that child was going to start waving gang signs and talking about gin and juice she was so glassy-eyed. My brother-in-law brought up the rear looking like a pack mule. He was carrying a diaper bag, a laptop bag, and a car seat. We treat him so badly…

We didn’t get to bed that night until 12-12:30 Easter morning, but Emmalyn was up bright and early at the crack of 7:30. Don’t ask me why, but I was watching Chitty Chitty Bang Bang instead of doing what good Christians around the world were doing: searching for their good shoes and yelling at each other to get out of the bathroom so they could brush their teeth. Easter morning is probably the most stressful morning for Christians. All Christians charity is lost and the majority of us have to spend the entire morning suppressing the urge to cuss out the woman who chose to wear a parade float as an Easter bonnet. But that’s beside the point.

Since Emmalyn and I were both up, I decided to set up the toy that Chi-Chi had bought her. The game that Emmalyn chose for us to play “Auntie, throw me into air so I can squeal and then pull your hair when you try to stop” wasn’t doing it for me. Chi-Chi had purchased a Fisher Price toy lawn mower for Emmalyn. It had a smiley face, much like real lawn mowers, sang about the ABCs, counted to 10, and was thoroughly creepy. I’ve always had a fear of talking inanimate objects, so putting that toy together was my Easter act of service. It took me about 20 minutes to put that thing together. 15 of those minutes were spent ripping through the packaging. Fisher Price wins the award for “Most Tape Put on Cardboard Packaging” I could have taped Emmalyn to a wall with the amount of tape that was on that box. Instead, I spent every two seconds saying, “That’s not for your mouth…No, not in your mouth…Emmalyn, don’t put that in your mouth…Should that be going in your mouth?” and so on and so forth.

After I freed the Lawn Mower of Nightmares from its sticky tomb, I attached all of the pieces and showed Emmalyn how to play with it.

She was entertained for all of 00.0009 seconds.

The rest of the morning we played, “Pull Auntie’s hair while she cries quietly to herself.”

The next day, I was greeted at the door by peals of laughter. Emmalyn was overcome with glee. I heard the Lawn Mower of Nightmares going off so I thought that they had finally bonded and were playing like normal people. (Well, person and inanimate object possibly possessed by the devil.) What sight greeted me as I stepped into the house? Was it the sight of my niece playing with the toy I had so lovingly put together for her?


That only happens to people whose nieces love them.

My niece apparently lives to be the little black rain cloud drizzling over my life.

Instead of playing with the Lawn Mower of Nightmares, Emmalyn was playing with a water bottle. The kind that you put into a water cooler. The kind that is the same size as her.

She was moving it across the floor and this was akin to watching rockets go off on Mars.

To make matters worse, my sister and brother-in-law didn’t even take the Lawn Mower of Nightmares home with them. That piece of occult paraphernalia is still sitting in my house.

It watches me when I sleep.