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Funny stories about family

There’s Nothing Like A Mum — But A Great Stepmum Is Pretty Close

, , , , , , , | Related | January 2, 2023

My mother died when I was five. I was old enough to have very fond memories of the kindest woman to ever live, who loved me more than anything in the world, even after she got sick. When she died, my inconsolable dad didn’t even think about dating for several years.

He sat me down when I was eleven and told me that he had met someone. He had been seeing her secretly for several months, and he would like me to meet her before he moved any further. While I was a little bit terrified — my friends had stepmothers who HATED them, and they hated them right back — I agreed to do it for my dad, who had always put me first. I figured if this woman was special enough to get my dad to start dating again, then I should at least see what she was like.

Enter [Stepmum]. She showed up to our first meeting nervous as h*** with a puzzle in her hand. I LOVED puzzles, but my dad lacked the patience to do them with me and was always working. She tipped it out onto the table and sat down to help, answering every single one of my rapid-fire questions — even the ones that made my dad turn bright red. From that afternoon forward, we were best friends.

She was kind and funny, and she never tried to push me into anything. She came to every one of my hockey games and cheered louder than anyone else and always took me out for lunch afterward. I went to her when I got my first period, terrified because Dad had assumed that sex-ed had prepared me, and she handled it like a champ.

A year after I met [Stepmum], she moved in, and she and Dad got married. I was her maid of honor. She was an only child and her parents spoiled the HECK out of me — fancy electronics, new clothes, tonnes of “I saw this and thought of you!” presents. [Stepmum] couldn’t have kids of her own, so I was their one shot at grandchildren, and they took that opportunity and ran with it.

When I was fourteen, Dad sat me down again. He informed me that he was also sick.

Dad: “[Stepmum] would like to adopt you in case anything happens to me so that you can stay with her.”

I had a visceral reaction to this. Not only was my dad sick, but now the worst was happening: [Stepmum] was trying to replace MY mum. She appeared in the kitchen doorway.

Stepmum: “For God’s sake, [Dad], that was not what we discussed that you would say.”

Dad fumbled for a moment while I cried and sniffled and said, “No,” over and over again.

Stepmum: “That’s totally fine, honey. Our other option is signing some papers for legal guardianship so that I can keep you in case of the worst happening. Is that something you want?”

I nodded enthusiastically, even through my snot and hiccups. I didn’t want to ever be without [Stepmum]; I just couldn’t handle her replacing my mother. We signed those papers, and that was that.

My dad fought like h*** and recovered, even if he was now down a leg. [Stepmum] is now the world’s greatest grandma to my three little gremlins, and they love to go for rides on Poppy’s wheelchair. [Stepmum] is absolutely my mum in every sense of the word except on paper — and she never pushed for the paper, either.

His Bark Is Worse Than His… Non-Bark?

, , , , , , | Related | January 1, 2023

My husband and I have acquired a small menagerie, taking in any furry people who need our help. When a friend had to move into an assisted living facility, we offered to take in his dog, Bromey. Bromey is a husky mix that our friend adopted from the pound, so we don’t know anything about his first few years. He came to us a happy and mellow pup with one unusual trait: he never barked. He would grumble and growl when play-fighting with our pit mix, Geordi, and he would softly “woof” in his sleep when dreaming, but for almost three years, we had never heard a single full-throated bark.

He soon settled into the household and could usually be found snoozing in our bedroom. For some reason, the spot under our bed (a tight fit for either dog) was always the preferred nap spot.

One lazy afternoon, I was reading with Geordi snoring under the bed. Bromey wandered in, stood in the doorway for a moment, and then let out a single loud bark. The sound had me jumping up to check on him as the brown hound emerged from beneath my side of the bed to investigate. Surely it must be serious if our silent boy was barking.

Geordi and I finally untangled ourselves and stepped around the foot of the bed to see Bromey’s wagging tail disappearing under my husband’s side of the bed as he settled into the “best” nap spot. Clever boy.

It’s been over a year since Bro found his bark — and I do mean a single bark. He remains a dog of few words but has now trained us to respond to his occasional commands, always delivered with one sharp bark and a grin.

This Herded Flock Knows No Borders

, , , , , , | Related | December 31, 2022

When I was young, my mum, who had grown up with border collies in Scotland, got us a puppy. She had the typical black and white markings and was just a wee thing when we got her. Well, pups grow, and she had a definite herding instinct from the start.

In our rural neighbourhood, there were two older teens who had homing pigeons and were tired of them, I got a coop and a bunch of pigeons for free — just another addition to the zoo.

One summer day, the pigeons were walking around on our backdoor patio, which abutted a garage and a wall — essentially an enclosed corner. Doggo saw them and, making herself flat to the ground, slowly worked herself back and forth until the pigeons were cornered. It took about twenty minutes of stealth. About eight birds were crammed together, and then, in an instant, they all just flew away.

Some people may say that dogs don’t have emotions or expressions. That day, I saw the dog stand up and look at the pigeons as they vanished with an expression that said, “Hey! You’re not allowed to do that!” She wasn’t mad or barking or anything, just mystified that all her work was undone in an instant.

I tried to call her to me, but she just skulked away in either embarrassment or a snit.

Pippi, you were always a good dog, and decades later, I still love and miss you.

Related:
Going Beyond The Borders Of Being A Helpful Pet
Collies Without Borders
Border Collies Are Focused… On Something…
No Borders On That Guy’s Rudeness
No Borders On That Kid’s Kindness

Careful The Fights You Have; Children Will Listen

, , , , , | Related | December 30, 2022

My parents separated when I was in my early teens, and for some years, it was ugly between them. While my mom made sure that I still had a relationship with my dad, I was extremely angry about what he did to my mom and tried to avoid being around him too much, especially because he kept trying to bad-talk Mom to me.

One day, he turns to me and starts to complain.

Dad: “Your mom was crazy, honey. She would scream at me for no reason.”

Me: “Mhm.”

Dad: “I would get home and she would make up all sorts of accusations.”

Me: “Okay.”

Dad: “I never said anything back. I don’t know why she would treat me like that. She is crazy, I’m telling you.”

I got fed up, and for the first time, I decided to stand up to him.

Me: “Please stop. This is all a lie.”

Dad: “What are you talking about? Did she poison you against me already?!”

Me: *Quietly* “This speech of yours might work with my brothers, Dad… but did you forget my bedroom shares a wall with the kitchen? All the times you two went to argue there instead of your bedroom to not wake us up, well, I woke up for them. I heard it all. I know what happened. Stop talking bad things about Mom to me, because if it wasn’t for her, I wouldn’t even come to have lunch with you anymore.”

Surprisingly, it worked. He looked ashamed like I had never seen him before — or since — and stopped talking. He only started to trash-talk Mom to me one more time, but then he saw the look on my face and got quiet.

We Clearly Majored In The Wrong Subject

, , , , | Related | December 29, 2022

My parents are in the process of moving, and we’re in their new house, which has about half of their stuff in it. They are telling me about the next load the movers will bring. They’ve inherited a number of pretty old antiques.

Mom: “The china cabinet is going to go there—” *points* “—and then the other one is going right here.”

Me: “What other one?”

Mom: “1730.”

Me: “…what?”

Mom: “1730.”

Dad: “What are you talking about?”

Mom: “The one from the 1730s!”

Me: “What one? I don’t know how to tell 1730s from 1830s from 1930s!”

Mom: “The one we got from Aunt Susan!”

Me: “I don’t know what that is! What kind of furniture are we even talking about?”

Mom: “The buffet in the dining room by the kitchen door! Why don’t you understand?!”

Apparently, I need an advanced degree in historical furniture to chat with my mom.