Random 5 Friday ~ TV dinners, road trips, community and common sense

Random Five Friday pic

It’s Friday and here are 5 random happenings and thoughts from this week:

1.  Hubbs and I talked about this a couple of days ago but who else remembers when TV dinners were good and something to look forward to?   I remember, on special occasions, Mom coming home from town with some of these.  Our excitement was palpable as we placed our foil trays into the oven and, later, peeled back the cover and attacked the fried chicken, potatoes, vegetables and little apple or cherry dessert.  It was even better if Mom and Dad were going out for the night and my cousin and I had an Elvis movie coming on at 8!   Haven’t had one of these in 35 years but I still smile at the memory.

tv dinner

Oh yes!

2.  Road trip Wednesday crossing three counties and at least 3 weather bands.  Several times I drove through freezing rain or flurries.  On my way to my last appointment, I rounded the bend on a country road, and spotted something odd.  It took me a few moments to realize what I was looking at: newly shorn sheep shivering in the snow.  (Say that seven times – ha!)


Dude! It’s way too early for us to be naked!!

3.  Stopping for gas yesterday morning, an older gentleman was filling his van up just ahead of me.  As the wind blew my hair sideways I looked up, his eyes met mine, I smiled and commented, “So much for Spring, hey?”  He laughed and replied, “I know, we just got home from Florida yesterday, and I told the wife next time we’re staying there!”  He chatted a bit more about their trip there and the snow on the ground at his home here and what a crazy year it’s been weather-wise.  He paid his tab, wished me a good day, and off he went.  And as I left the gas station, there he was at the next intersection, giving me a hearty wave good-bye.  I smiled, waved back, and gave thanks for living in a place where weather is always a safe topic and more people than not are friendly and nice.

4.  I’ve been out of the office a lot lately and something I’ve had reinforced again is a simple rule of business etiquette.  When I’m away, I put the “out of office” message on ~ I let internal employees know how to reach me and my team and external contacts know I am away until X time or date.  I do the same with voice mail.  This helps manage the influx of requests, keeps inquiries and tasks moving, and lessens the “Hi it’s so and so; call me back please” messages — simple, effective, and irritating when others don’t do it, too.   Yes I know we live in a 24/7 society and instant everything but there are times I’m in meetings or out of range.  I’m not a Fireman and managing expectations has become as important as meeting deadlines.


5.  Saw this recently and laughed out loud.  I’m pretty sure our dog Frankie would have answered to these names, too!

stop that dog

Do you remember having TV dinners on special occasions as a kid?  What’s the most interesting thing you’ve seen on a recent road trip?  Does it make you happy when random people comment on the weather to you?  What rules of business etiquette work for – or annoy – you?  And what other names do your pets answer to?

Happy Friday, peeps!

Categories: Animals, Attitude, Family, Food, Fun, Home, Humor, Joy, Life, Mom, music, Personal, Random, Seasons, Thoughts, Work | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

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16 thoughts on “Random 5 Friday ~ TV dinners, road trips, community and common sense

  1. Your Randoms make me smile! I especially love the one about the doggie named “Stop That” and “Get Back Here,” and the fellow who made the weather seem like a way to cross bridges with strangers. 🙂

    • I think Frankie would have been most familiar with “C’mon” (when I was grilling) and “Get!” when I was cleaning out the fridge!

      And I love it when someone tries to connect; I miss being from a small community and when those moments happen I feel like I belong again 🙂 MJ

  2. I loved TV dinners! The little dessert was always so good. My dog thought his name was “Bad doggie.”

    • We didn’t get to have them often, maybe once or twice a year, but yes the dessert sometimes was the best part. I don’t think they were as great tasting as fun and novel for us poor farm kids who HAD to eat home-made, home-baked, and home-grown food every day (what ungrateful brats we were!)

      Bad doggie ~ ha! MJ

  3. Yep, I remember TV dinners. Like you say, it was a special night/treat when we got those as kids! I think I even recall they were good. Haven’t had one since elementary school!
    Yes to weather always being a safe topic! Having lived in Colorado, Michigan, and Alaska, weather is always on the front burner…wait five minutes for a change!
    And yes, I like out of office messages…my personal pet peeve is when a voice mail message is waaay out of date…shows a lack of attention to detail.
    Love the doggy names! Think I had a few dogs that shared these! Happy Friday! ~ Sheila

    • All of the above! And yes, living in all of those various places, the weather surely must be a safe topic 🙂

      I agree with you – when someone has a really old voice mail or out of office message – grr. I will let them know though. Some don’t realize you can set a timer to turn it off 🙂

      Happy weekending! MJ

  4. I’ve eaten a few TV dinners in my day…. I’m sure they don’t taste like they used to, though. Love that you and the gentleman at the gas staiton had a friendly little chat – love those little encounters, and wish EVERYONE could be that way! The world would be a much nicer place, wouldn’t it??
    Hope your spring arrives soon…. said she who planted flowers this morning while wearing ear muffs….!
    Happy weekend!

    • I agree, I don’t think they probably taste as I remember. I’m sure there are some that are good but I never buy them so I just don’t know.

      Love friendly chats with total strangers; I’m always amazed how much total strangers will reveal. Maybe the anonymity is a safe zone?

      Hope your little flowers do OK in this cold, MJ

  5. most interesting thing I saw on a road trip recently, was a slow moving tractor suddenly in my lane. I was following another vehicle, doing my normal 65, when suddenly he swerves into the right lane (this was normal 2 lane each way road) less than an 1/8 of a mile right in front of me was this nimrod pulling something completely on the road during work hour traffic. I am a farm boy myself and I know sometimes you have to take the main roads..but if you have to do that, stay on the gravel as much as possible too… (he could have traveled completely on the shoulder and done just fine) It still creeps me out, I was just seconds away from a major crash.

    • Oh, that’s such a frightening situation, DM. I’ve been in that same predicament – scary! You’re right, he could have been on the shoulder and you wonder why he didn’t go there? Glad you are OK!

      Haven’t heard the word “nimrod” in a while ~ made me smile 🙂 MJ

  6. I never had a tv dinner as a kid–doubt my dad would have eaten it. My mom always had dinner on the table at 5:00. They grew just about everything we ate. It is nice to strike up small talk and share a smile with a stranger. Not everyone is like that. Those poor sheep!

    • My Mom grew, raised and baked everything we ate, too. It was all delicious. We wanted what everyone else had – and – at the time, it was TV dinners. We didn’t have them much (Dad hated them) but we kids thought they were great 🙂

      I felt so bad for those poor sheep! MJ

  7. Yes! Sometimes when we had a babysitter, we’d get to eat TV dinners. But never with the TV. Just the other day as I was wheeling my grocery cart to my car, I passed an elderly man who was looking around the parking lot looking for his car. He told me he had Alzheimer’s and could not find his car. I talked to him for a little while about what his car looked like and what make and model it was. Pretty soon I found it. Felt good to help him out, especially knowing what a difficult road he’ll be going down with Alzheimer’s.

    • Bless you for helping that man in the parking lot 😉

      We sometimes could eat the TV dinners on our little metal TV trays and watch TV – but usually they were eaten at the table 🙂

      My brother ate dessert first .. I saved it till the end! MJ

  8. Once again, you’ve reminded me that we come from similar times and places, MJ! TV dinners (and chicken pot pies) were a rare treat in our house. Either one probably meant that there was something special on television that night, like The Wizard of Oz, or maybe a Charlie Brown or Winnie the Pooh special. We probably got to make use of the metal TV trays and enjoy our food in the living room while watching those long awaited, once-a-year showings. Good memories!

    I love a random, friendly conversation with a stranger. They always bring an assurance that good people still exist in the world. I don’t get enough of them. Maybe I need to figure out how to initiate more of them!

    Many of my business contacts are college and university staff. Rare is the occasion that one of them provides an out-of-office notice. And yes, it is frustrating. I never leave the office without updating mine.

    I think Lucy responds to our tone, more so than the name we call her. At any given time, she might be called Lucy, LuLu, Lou Ann, Lois, Sweet Pea or Dingo Dog, among others!

    • Yes! A TV dinner with The Wizard of Oz or maybe a Disney Special or the Carol Burnett show! 🙂

      My Dad was a very friendly man and I bombed around a lot with him in his old truck; he never met a stranger, and I learned from him (and Mom, too) that you really can find commonalities most anywhere. I always feel delighted when someone senses a friend in me and a conversation ensues…

      No OOO grate my nerves; and then you’re supposed to just “know” that they’re away? Grr.

      Have to say the name “Dingo Dog” made me laugh out loud!! Lucy is a great dog and she’s lucky to have you ❤ ~ MJ

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