These are a few of my favorite things.

My family is incredibly amusing.

If you ever wonder why I am clutzy, why I am loud, or why I feel the need to label my food whenever I put it in a community fridge, all you have to do is look at my family. Since I have gotten home, I’ve spent a lot of time laughing at the things my family does. I have compiled a list of the most hilarious things that go on in my house, and I present it here, for your consideration:

1. The Hammocks
Tyler and I returned from Nicaragua to find our back porch completely changed. What used to be a black hole for various objects like old rakes, bicycles, broken down lawn chairs, and some pitiful look plants was now a paradise. My mother took it upon herself to create an oasis for all souls who wander through… some de-junking, some cleaning, a few brightly colored lawn chairs, a little fountain, some rope lights, and some slightly more excited looking ferns later, and she has her beautiful back porch. All it was missing was some hammocks… and she got them. What she didn’t know was that Tyler also felt the need for a hammock, and he bought one in Nicaragua. We ended up with one chair-style hammock and two large “normal” hammocks strung across the porch. Were they hung properly? Nope.
Jonathan experienced what happens when a chair hammock is not properly installed a couple weeks ago, when it suddenly released and sent him plummeting to the ground, butt-first.
Caleb felt the thrill of a Nicaraguan hammock flinging you backwards, causing you to flip off and land on your head- much to your mother’s dismay.
And Dad no longer wonders what it is like to suddenly, somewhat swiftly, slide from the sky to the porch as you lay peacefully in your hammock – your popcorn goes everywhere, your book falls out of your hands, and your family nearly pees your pants from laughing at the look on your face.

2. Riding with Josh (and mom)
Josh has his permit.
This should strike fear into your heart. It certainly strikes fear into my mother’s heart.
Riding with Josh is like watching a funny, familiar movie. You’ve seen it a million times, you know what’s going to happen, but you still find yourself on the edge of your seat, alternating between laughing hysterically and fearing for what will happen next.
It happens like this:
Josh climbs into the driver’s seat. My mom climbs into the passenger’s seat.
They put their seatbelts on.
Josh turns on the ignition, then reaches for the radio (my mother begins to groan loudly), hits the power button, then turns the volume up… up… up… and then a little more up. Country music blasts through the vehicle.
And then we take off… careening around corners, flying down the road, until mom either yells, “RED LIGHT!,” “STOP SIGN!,” or, “THEY’RE BRAKING!” Then we screech to a halt, sliding to a stop moments before impact, and those of us in the back seat are left hanging onto each other and wondering if we should have told our loved ones goodbye one more time before climbing into this vehicle.
We take off again.
Josh takes a corner wildly.
Mom tells him where to go.
Josh turns the radio up louder.
Mom turns the radio down.
Josh waits too long to brake behind a garbage truck.
Mom confiscates Josh’s beef jerky.
Josh screeches to a halt in a driveway.
Those in the backseat leap out and kiss the ground, thankful to make it one more day.

3. Dad Hunting Flies
Flies have decided they like my house.
I can see why. It’s cool, comfortable, has good food, and my parents are generally hospitable. Just not to them.
Flies light on a table, and my mom runs at them with a dishtowel, shrieking, “GET AWAY FROM THE FOOD! AWAY!”
Caleb tries to catch them. Josh waves at them with his hands, not minding that they’re there…. just don’t let them get near his food.
Dad takes the more stealthy approach.
When a fly lands on the counter, he retrieves the fly-swatter and creeps up on them sneakily… steadily… quietly… “It’s okay… just stay there… I won’t hurt you…” he croons. Then, all at once, his muscles tense, his eyes widen, his arm jerks like a snake attacking, and a sudden *THWACK* wrenches the air. The fly lays, still, unmoving…. dead.
“MUWAHAHAHA,” laughs Jim the Fly Killer. “You’ll never bug me again!” Then, spreading his arms and lifting his face to the sky, victoriously, “COME, Other Flies! I dare you!”
The flies don’t respond. They know better!

Oh yes. My family is fun.

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