Rick Ryckeley's blog

Cats in socks

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An expectant mother placed a picture of three kittens above the changing table. She had purchased the item from a garage sale in the neighborhood.

The kittens dangled from a huge limb of a grand old oak tree. A unique picture for a room that housed a changing table full of diapers, wipes, assorted lotions and creams.

Each of the kittens filled a sock that left just their faces exposed. The first was white with brown spots — the kitten’s face, not the sock. All the socks hanging from the tree limb were white. Read More»

Bubble-wrap your life

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No pun intended, but medical insurance is costing me an arm and leg nowadays. The costs of in-network and out-of-network doctor copays, deductibles, and out of pocket maximums have gotten maximally unaffordable.

If you do get sick, don’t try filling a prescription. At the drug store, you’ll be met with a long list of decisions you’ll have to make in your sickened state. Do you choose: generic, non-generic, formulated, or non-formulated. Each comes with its own separate copay. Read More»

Remote for a dinosaur

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September marks the start of the 14th year for this weekly column. Many thanks to you, dear reader, for making it all possible. Without your faithful readership, the many adventures growing up at 110 Flamingo Street, the stories about The Wife and The Boy, and the general observations of life might never have made their way to print. Unfortunately, this could be the last one. Read More»

Learning the hard way

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Last week I learned something the hard way, and believe it or not, the teacher wasn’t my dad. The teacher wasn’t The Wife. The teacher wasn’t even the world.

Nope – I learned my lesson early Friday morning from a 14-month-old little girl and a large brown and white majestic duck. It’s a lesson I will never forget. Read More»

A Banana Split Dinner

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Would it be so unusual to have a banana split at dinnertime? How about simply replacing dinner with one? Most folks would say neither is a good idea. Most folks would claim such a thing isn’t healthy. No normal person would substitute dinner for a calorie-laden banana and ice cream concoction – topped with lots of nuts and gooey stuff. Who in their right mind would do such a thing - not once but twice, and in the same week? The very same week he was to get his annual physical. You can’t see it, but over here my hand is raised. Read More»

Light up the Night

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Last Monday it happened, and it was one of the biggest things I’d ever seen in the night sky – except of course when Bubba Hanks let us catapult him off the top of Cliff Condos. It was a Double Dog Dare, and he was the only one brave enough to actually go through with it. Luckily for Bubba, he landed in a giant mound of loose dirt from our three-year dig. If he’d gotten hurt, his dad would’ve throw us all off the cliff. Read More»

Sticks and Stones

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On the first day of school, most kids worry about something. Some worry about their clothes, others the way their hair looks. Still others worry if they’ll be unlucky enough to get that one teacher that nobody wants to get. So what was the one thing yours truly worried about while attending the world of academia, you might ask? Well, it wasn’t just one thing. It was three. Read More»

Dog ate my homework

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While I was growing up at 110 Flamingo Street, there was one reason that topped my list as to why I really didn’t like this time of year.

It wasn’t that it was the official end of summer for us kids – which it was. It wasn’t because the local bully somehow always ended up in my classroom – which somehow Down the Street Bully Brad always did.

The fact I had to sit for seven hours – longer if I had detention after school — was a big reason why I didn’t like this time of the year, but it still wasn’t the number one reason. Read More»

Me and my shadow

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Around 5:30 Saturday afternoon the most amazing thing happened. The entire world stopped — at least for one little girl.

Little One noticed her shadow for the very first time, and her reaction was something totally unexpected. There was nothing to be afraid of. There was really nothing there, but just try and explain that to a 13-month-old whose only words are Mommy, Daddy, kitty and — my favorite — duck. Read More»

Stopping the flood

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At first, it was a just a trickle. There was no real harm being done. After all, who amongst us notices a trickle? A case could be made that the trickle was even beneficial.

Eventually, the trickle turned into a small stream. It was obvious the stream needed to be stopped, but I didn’t say anything. My silence was partly out of fear of what would happen to me and partly because I really didn’t know how to stop it. Read More»

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