New versions of old clichés

Beth Mende Conny of Write Directions and Lifenicity offers new versions of old clichés. No reason to avoid these in your writing!If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again — and then blame others.

What goes up must come down — when you run out of Xanax.

Absence makes the heart grow fonder — when that jerk is finally out of your life.

Always a bridesmaid, never the bride — which is fine given today’s divorce rate.

Get your ducks in order — then replace them with turkey breast, which is lower in fat.

The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence — because your neighbor uses pesticide.

Laugh all the way to the bank — because you know you’re overdrawn.

People who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones — neither should people who live in brick houses.

Separate the wheat from the chaff — unless you live in the city and have no idea what chaff is.

She’s a peach — but becomes an apple when peach season’s over.

He woke up on the wrong side of the bed — which was quite painful given his bed was against a wall.

You can’t judge a book by its cover — only by its inside flap.

Fly by the seat of your pants — right over to your chiropractor because you are seriously out of alignment.

Read the fine print — but only through rose-colored glasses.

Losing cell phone, glasses, mind




What other dumb thing have you done? I’ve worn my glasses into the shower. And I’ve also tried to take out my contact lenses even though I wasn’t wearing any. (Did you know the surface of your eyeball stretches?! VERY creepy.)


My Weekly Recap in Pictures

I've learned my lesson and have taken a pic of my car in the parking lot. All that's left now is to remember to look at the pic. #bethconny #lifenicity #wishmeluck

I’ve learned my lesson and have taken a pic of my car in the parking lot. All that’s left now is to remember to look at the pic. #bethconny #lifenicity #wishmeluck

Got up early to work. But how can I work in this mess?!!! #bethconny #lifenicity #iguessthatmeansishoulddosomethingelsewhatatragedy

Got up early to work. But how can I work in this mess?!!! #bethconny #lifenicity #iguessthatmeansishoulddosomethingelsewhatatragedy

car garage

There she is! Third car after the pole. #bethconny #lifenicity #stopmessingwithmybraincarornogasforyou

Again!!!! Up in the nose bleed level of the parking lot, trying to locate my car. Why did I forget to take a picture, as my friends advised? I think I'm going to start staying home, where I know where my car is. #bethconny #lifenicity #thisisgettingoldasismymind

Again!!!! Up in the nose bleed level of the parking lot, trying to locate my car. Why did I forget to take a picture, as my friends advised? I think I’m going to start staying home, where I know where my car is. #bethconny #lifenicity #thisisgettingoldasismymind


Where, where, where is my car?! Why, why, why is every other car also a Toyota or gray?! #bethconny #lifenicity #nexttimeiwilltakenoteofwhatleveliamon


This morning I stumbled out of bed. Literally. Time to straighten up. #bethconny #lifenicity #needabookintervention

Love my inlaw's house. Never know what I'll find in a dusty corner. #bethconny #lifenicity #anyonewanttogetwildandcrazyandpolka?

Love my inlaw’s house. Never know what I’ll find in a dusty corner. #bethconny #lifenicity #anyonewanttogetwildandcrazyandpolka?

How did I ever think these were cute! #bethconny #lifenicity #atrulybadhairday

How did I ever think these were cute! #bethconny #lifenicity #atrulybadhairday

dark side parenting

The Dark Side of Parenting

dark side parentingHere’s Joe. He’s hitting the ball. He’s having fun.

Where’s Beth?

She’s back in their small apartment, trying to fold laundry while attending to her newborn. She has been trying to fold laundry for hours, but her baby cries and poops and is hungry. Beth cries too and thinks: “18 more years of this?!”

A couple of hours later, Beth hears Joe call her name. She goes to the window. Two floors below is Joe. He’s smiling. “I’m going to go to (some guy’s name) and have a beer.”

Something happens to Beth’s voice. It sounds as if she has been possessed by an evil spirit rising from the deep. She lets out a primal scream: “Get the hell up here!”

Beth has never yelled at Joe. She has always been civil. But she has crossed over to the Dark Side — Parenthood — where it is every man (and woman) for himself.

Beth feels bad, but she gets to fold the laundry — and then throw in another batch. Victory!


Parenting books for the masses

Beth Mende Conny of Write Directions and Lifenicity writes funny blog post on the best parenting books for babies, toddlers and other youngsters.I am a child-rearing expert. My qualifications: I’ve raised two children and have lived to tell the tale. Here are the books that saw me through the rough spots:

What joy of what sex?
For parents who believe that having a kid is the ultimate form of birth control. Each chapter offers practical advice on getting the old engines humming again. Includes tips on staying awake during sex.

How will I tell my child the facts of life when I can’t remember what they are?
A primer for parents who are not yet ready for What joy of what sex? Comes complete with pictures that clearly identify body parts whose purposes have been forgotten. Has a special chapter on storks, cabbage patches and immaculate conception.

Teach your child four-letter words in three days
Teaches parents how to expand their child’s vocabulary within three days to include the six essential four-letter words in the English language: no-no, stop, don’t, down, stay and heel.

Zen and the art of diaper changing
Teaches parents how to make each diaper change an opportunity for spiritual development. Comes with a cassette of Top Ten mantras, including the ever-popular “Om … om … om going to dock your allowance if you don’t keep still.”

How to talk to your spouse
For couples who want to rekindle the intellectual fires that parenthood has all but snuffed out. Exercises take readers from the formation of simple, three-word sentences, such as, “It’s your turn,” to complex, eight-word constructs like, “Hey, don’t blame me; he’s your kid too.”

Five minutes alone in the bathroom and other dream vacations
A parent’s guide to vacation spots in or close to home. Includes articles by parents on their favorite vacations, including: “How I lost my daughter in the supermarket and had the best 10 minutes of my life.” Comes with maps of places to hide in.

As I said, these books saw me through my child-rearing years. I’ve since moved on to books about parenting adult children. The first: Would it really kill you to call your mother?

Beth Mende Conny's humorous parents quizz on guilt.

Not guilty!

Beth Mende Conny's humorous parents quizz on guilt.Guilt. To be a mother is to suffer from it. But how much suffering is enough?

Take this quiz and find out. Simply the circle the responses that best apply to you.

Question #1 — While shopping at the mall, you and your child decide to split a Mrs. Fields cookie. You break it in two, but one half is bigger than the other. You:

a)  keep the bigger half because he’s not quite old enough to notice he’s gotten shortchanged; besides, you’re the one who paid for it.

b)   give him the bigger half, telling yourself you don’t need the extra calories.

c)  give him the whole cookie to make up for the fact that you even thought of giving him the smaller piece.

Question #2 — Your daughter comes home from preschool with yet another painting. She insists you hang it on the refrigerator beside her other artwork, but there’s simply no more room. You:

a)  take down one of her older paintings and mail it to her grandparents.

b)  hang the latest picture on the inside of your refrigerator.

c)  buy a second refrigerator.

Question #3 — You’re at an aerobics class, only your son won’t stay with the gym’s playroom baby-sitter. You:

a)  tell him he can stand in the back and watch—if he promises not to laugh.

b)  include him in the class by using him as a free weight during the arm exercises.

c)  leave the class, telling yourself that taut and gorgeous bodies are symptomatic of flabby, superficial minds.

Time’s up! The quiz is over. Look over your responses and determine in which of the following categories you belong:

If most of your responses were “A”s: Go seek help immediately! You have zero guilt, and as everyone knows, mentally stable women cannot be mothers. Tsk, tsk.

 If most of your responses were “B”s: Congratulations! You’re worthy of calling yourself a mom. You’ve got just enough guilt to make you lose occasional sleep but not enough to turn you into an insomniac.

If most of your responses were “C”s: You’re too far gone. There’s nothing you can do to appease your guilt but hang on until your kids leave home. Even then, expect your guilt feelings to linger. You can, however, take consolation in knowing that one day, when your children become parents, they too will experience guilt.

And who says there isn’t justice in the world


A typical day in my life

Beth Mende Conny writes about her day, which includes activities like losing her memory and glasses, having hot flashes, crying jags and other middle-age endeavors.

The beginnings of my fun-filled day!

8:30 – 11:30 a.m.

Search for glasses

11:30 – 11:33
Hot flash

11:33 – 11:35
Change shirt

11:35 – noon
Eat breakfast

Noon – 1:15 p.m.
Search for glasses

1:15 – 1:16
Pretend to work

1:16 – 2:30
Check email, Facebook, Twitter, eBay, YouTube cat videos

Call Verizon about billing problem

2:30 – 3:30
Wait on hold; check email, Facebook; knit sweater

3:30 – 4:15
Explain problem to Verizon sales rep in Papua New Guinea

Give up

4:16 – 4:45
Eat lunch

4:45 – 5:15
Search for glasses, hot flash, change shirt

5:15 – 5:30
Micowave dinner

5:30 – 5:35
Eat dinner, converse with husband

5:35  – 7
Hang up on telemarketers

7  – 7:02
Turn on living room TV, walk to couch, sit on my glasses   

7:03 – 7:30

7:30 – 8
Open window, creep onto ledge, cry some more

8 – 9
Wipe tears, return to living room, watch “Dancing with the Stars”

9 – 10
Nap in front of TV

10 – 10:40
Roam house without glasses to find bedroom

10:40 – 50
Prepare for bed, brush teeth with hairbrush, apply anti-aging cream to face, boobs and thighs

Go to bed

10:50 – 11
Hot flash, change pajamas, sheets

11:00 – 1:30 a.m.
Elbow snoring husband

1:30 – 2:30

2:30 – 2:35
Go to bathroom

2:35 – 2:40

2:40 – 2:45
Go to bathroom

2:45 – 3

3 – 4:30
Hot flash, elbow husband, go to bathroom, cry, climb onto ledge, go back to bed

4:30 – 7

7:30 – 8
Search for shower, brush teeth, mistake husband’s shaving cream for toothpaste

8 – 8:20
Eat breakfast

Call optometrist

8:20 – 8:30
Begin search for car keys, cry








Will nuclear winter affect the way you tan?

Nuclear warfare and parenting. Beth Conny connects the two in this humorous piece for Lifenicity. friend Maddie called the other night and we had the following conversation:

Maddie: Brad and I are thinking of having a baby, but I’m worried about it affecting our relationship. Do you think it will?

Me: That’s like asking me if I think nuclear winter will affect the way you tan.

Maddie:  Does that mean yes?

Me: But, of course.

Maddie: How so?

Me: Why don’t you ask me something easier, like “how does having a kid not change your life?”

Maddie: Oh come one and humor me.  Tell me how motherhood has changed you. Read more

How to meditate … or not

Beth Conny offers advice on how to meditate.

How to meditate (not!)
© 2014 Beth Conny

This is how I meditate:

Om …

Om …

Om …

Om … Gotta fight Verizon on my bill. Great, half the day blown.

Om …

Om …

Om … Maybe I should sit on a pillow. My foot’s going to fall asleep. Oh, come on, Beth. You can last 10 minutes.

Om …

Om …

Om …

Om … Do we have bagels in the house? I feel like having a bagel … Stop thinking! Just breathe. There you go. In … out, in … out … in … out …


Om …

Om …

Om … An English muffin might be nice …

Om …

Om … We’re out of bread … and dish soap, Romaine … Damn! My foot’s asleep. I knew that would happen! (Peek at alarm) Nine minutes left? How can that be?!

Um …

Um …

Um … zzzzz … zzzz …

Huh? Why am I on the floor? Why’s my foot asleep? Oh, that’s right —

Om …

Om …

Om … Did I tell Joe his sister called? Yes, I did. At least I think I did. Maybe not. I should call Joe and let him know, just in case. No, it can wait, I’ve only got 8 minutes left. EIGHT MINUTES???

In … out, in … out … in … out …

(Phone rings)

Probably a telemarketer …

Hmmm, hmmm …

Maybe they’re selling something I actually need … Or it could be Joe’s sister …


(Peek at clock. Glare.)


Grrrr … grrrr… grrrr …

Now both feet are asleep!

Ouch … ouch …

To hell with this. I’m going out for breakfast.


… as soon as I can get off the floor …


Screw Nirvana!