Saturday, October 25, 2014

How the Other Half Lives

Last night Ash was invited to attend a birthday/Halloween party with a soccer friend. She and another soccer buddy decided to dress alike. Jon took them on Wednesday to Party City to find a costume. They decided to go as Mitt Romney and Barak Obama. HILARIOUS!!!!

So the party lasted until 11:00. What? 11:00. That's late, like really late for this 'ole gal. Honestly I was nervous about dropping Ash off. I don't know the parents. I don't know the kids. Yeah, I'm that hovering helicopter mom. She wanted to go and I certainly trust her. So I gave her my phone and off she went.

I was really excited to go and pick her up and see how everything went. I walked into their home and went out back. It was like a party you would see out of a movie with a bunch of teenagers. Music, dancing, lights, groups of kids huddled together. And there I saw my precious girl, seated on a swing next to a soccer buddy laughing and having a good time.

Grateful and proud Mama. Ash has a good head on  her shoulders. She's confident and secure, and I'm grateful. . . . 'cause that means she less likely to compromise. She and her "twin" loaded up in the van and we took her "twin" home. Ash was talking so much, laughing, telling me all about her night. I loved every single second of it.

Ash and I dropped Zion off. She and I chatted the whole way home. It's 11:40 at this point. Way past my bedtime. Alec calls, "Mom, I didn't eat at work. Will you stop and pick me up a burger?" Ash and I headed to the Wendy's drive through. I loaded us up with burgers and a Frosty for she and I. That was some good stuff right there. It was so fun being up so late and out so late and even eating so late. I thought to myself, "This must be how the other half lives." I also thought, "I'm so thankful I get to sleep until 6:00 a.m. tomorrow."

We get home. It's approaching midnight. I'm about to turn into a pumpkin or that Frosty I just gulped down. We were all up, talking, chatting and hearing about Ash's night. Alec shared his Chick-fil-A adventures for the night. We turned on the TV. Hanna cuddled up next to me. Alec was on the other side of me. We watched a little Jimmy Fallon and laughed hard. I thanked Jesus for my family. . . for these moments, turned over on my left side and drifted to sleep.

Thursday, October 23, 2014


So Gus is a barker and Jon just happens to be his most favorite person ever. Jon is his master and Gus will do anything to get to his master. The problem is is his master doesn't want to be that loved, doesn't want to be that wanted. Gus' master really doesn't want a dog at all.

Gus will bark and Jon will yell, "Hush." And Gus will hush.

However, when any of the rest of us yells "Hush", Gus continues to bark. I guess it's because we ain't the master. ;)

This morning it was 4:15 a.m. Jon is pounding the pavement, and I'm on the couch drinking my coffee and reading my Bible. Jon has a certain route around and around the road outside he runs when Doug doesn't run with him. I guess Gus saw Jon, heard Jon, smelled Jon. I'm not sure. But Gus started barking and barking like, "I just want to be with you. Take me with you. I love you." That kind of bark.

In order to not wake up our neighbors, I yelled, "Hush."

Gus continued barking.

I yelled it again.

Gus continued barking.

Here I am inside my house on my sofa and I hear Jon yell, "Hush."

Gus hushed.

Until the next time Jon ran this way. Gus started with that bark again.

Jon yells, "Hush. Hush."

I giggled so hard.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

My First Cry

It happened today, and it came out of nowhere. Well, actually it came out of somewhere. Alec said something that he didn't mean to be offensive. I happened to roll with it and took it offensively, and I got mad.

He tried to console me, put his arm around me, tell me, "Mom, I didn't mean it like you took it."

Inwardly I knew he didn't mean it like I took it, but I jhave all this emotion bottled up and it just couldn't be held in any longer.

It started last week. The kids said something about home and not coming home when leaving home. They all knew I didn't like what they said, but I played tough guy. . . .whatever.

But I've held it in, suppressed it down, pushed it back. Yeah. . . all that.

So, today, this one little thing he said, I reacted first in anger.

Sweet thing tried to comfort his seething Mama. I wasn't having it. Let me clean 'cause that's what I do when I get mad. (You can look at my house and tell I don't get mad that often. Hee.Hee.)

My anger quickly turned to tears as I scrubbed my pots and pans with my tall, lanky boy beside me with his arm around me.

"Just let me be. I'm mad, and I need to be mad." I told him.

My tears fell and fell hard, and I finally spewed forth with what it really was.

It's him leaving. I'm excited for him. I really am. But, it's just that Mama in me. I don't like this. . . not one bit. . . not one iota. Yet, I'm excited for him. I really am. I want him to find his own path and make his own way. Goodness knows I'm an independent soul. I, of all people know if you try to hold us first-borns back it just creates tension and lots of it. It makes us feel squeezed and smothered and not free at all.

That precious boy assured me, "Mom, this is normal. It has nothing to do with you. All kids go through it. When I leave for college it's not the last time you will ever see me."

He was sweet and tender and gentle. And, bless that boy's soul for having a sensitive, heart-sleeve wearing Mama.

I hope he knows this is probably just the beginning of my cries.  At least it let's him know he's loved, right? That's what I'm telling myself anyway.

Until the next cry. . .

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Kid Talk

I just love having older kiddos. I love the teen years and the going into teen years. I enjoy my children so very much and I enjoy our conversations:

Alec: College, life, what to do when he "grows up", those are all the things on the brain these days. The other day he said, "Mom, I think I'd really like to go to law school. I wish Granddaddy could talk to me about it and give me some advice." Me too, Bud, me too.

Ash: After I was away for some CC training for five days, the day after I got home Ash and I both needed to be reading a book for CC. She said, "Can't we just hang out? I really just want to hang out." I love that she wanted to just hang out with me, so, of course, I said, "Yes." We cuddled up and watched TV together.

Hanna: That girl and her texting me. I was in Ohio a week ago. She texted me and said, "When are you going to be home? Everyone in this house is driving me crazy." When I was in Atlanta for my CC training after talking on the phone with her she texted me immediately after hanging up, "I love you sooooooooooo much."

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Mourning What Could Have Been

That man, he smells of heavily-laden "Old Spice" and loves watching "The Bachelor." He stands high and tall, and he and his wife are as precious as they come. I love when I see them "out and about" in town, and it makes me miss them all the more when I run into them. I always have trouble remembering their names because at Dayspring everyone had a nickname.

Pa-paw and Mimi.

Ash and I were out shopping for Hanna's birthday. I ran into those sweet things and I had a hard time rushing to get my shopping done in the hour and a half I had given us girls. Pa-paw talked about his oldest grandchild, Emilee, going off to school. Sweet Emilee. I often referred to her as the first little blond-headed girl I ever loved. She's turned into a beautiful young woman and has just started her first year of college. . . away from home.

Away from home. . .that's what my boy is looking at next year. So I get it, I do.

But Pa-paw, he confessed he had been so depressed since she has left. I could see it in his eyes and hear it in his words. You could see it in his countenance. He spoke of his worry over her and the mean world we live in. I tried to encourage him, "Well, that just makes you pray more, right?"Although he agreed, I could tell his heart was sad over his oldest grandchild moving away from home. I believe if he would have been a two year old he might have laid on the floor and kicked and screamed and beat his head against the floor. He would talk about calling her while she was up there and talking to her (isn't that just precious, him calling her?).

I'd try to motion myself away and tell him, "So good to see you Pa-paw," but he wasn't having it. He still needed to talk about missing Emilee and loving those other grandchildren, how proud he was of all of them, reminiscing back to the past of having bought them car seats to keep in his car so he could take them out to grab a bite to eat.

When we departed from him I told Ash, "You know, if Granddaddy was alive in his mind, that's exactly how he would be." He would, I just know it.

If Jim was alive in his mind he wouldn't be curled up in a hospital bed with a grayish appearance, hardly able to articulate a sentence. He wouldn't be having to be fed and changed and just lay there, unable to do anything for himself.

If he was alive in his mind, this is how he'd be:


  • He would tell him all the time how proud of the hard worker he is. 
  • He would go and eat Chick-fil-A on the nights Alec worked, but he probably wouldn't let Alec know he was there out of fear of imposing. 
  • Chick-fil-A would become his new favorite restaurant.
  • He might still call him "bubbagee". . . just maybe.
  • He would shake Alec's hand every time he saw Alec, being so proud of the young man he has and is becoming.
  • He would remind Alec to study hard.
  • He'd be worried sick at the thought of Alec possibly going away to college next year. But, he'd never voice it to Alec. He might would to me, but not Alec. He would respect Alec has a young man.
  • He'd definitely write Alec a letter expressing his heart to him. Granddaddy would probably have some of that good old "heart water" as he wrote his feelings down on paper.
  • He would be her A number 1 soccer fan and travel around to
  • He would always make sure he had money to buy something from the concession stand.
  • Soccer would become his favorite sport.
  • He'd yell hard when she has a good play.
  • When she goofed or made a mistake on a play he would defend her tooth and nail. 
  • He would tell her how pretty she is.
  • He'd probably call her "sweet".
  • He and Jon would talk soccer plays and soccer strategy and maybe even kick the ball around with her.
  • He would always want to go out to eat after every soccer game. And, he'd insist on treating us all.
  • He would write her a letter to tell her how much he loves her.
  • She would be his "baby girl" and probably a little bit of that is because she looks so much like her Aunt Holly.
  • He would love Hanna cuddled up next to him on the couch.
  • He'd delight over her when she cooked him muffins or cookies.
  • He would laugh so hard at her funny self until you could see him bent over in laughter without any noise coming from his mouth.
  • He would want to take her to gymnastics and tell her what a good job she is doing. 
  • He would want to listen to her read.
  • He would tell her how pretty she is.
  • He would write her a letter to tell her how much he loves her. 
How my heart just hurts. He's never had these opportunities, never had these privileges and never will. Dementia/Alzheimer's is a dirty little thief who is just ruthless. Jim doesn't even know the children. And all the children know of him is a man who has literally lost his mind. They don't know how much he would have loved them, delighted in them, and just gloated over them. 

Sometimes I really do believe the worst kind of heartache isn't necessarily missing what  was but what could have been. . . 

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Blessed My Heart

Well this morning I am up and at 'em and back to working. Up at 4:00 a.m., coffee cup #1, wasted time, started working, coffee cup #2, working. By the time Cookie came to get me to take him outside to go to the bathroom I decided it was time for coffee cup #3 and I'd better take him out.

I took Cookie outside and when I was going to get my third cup of coffee I noticed a light on in the girls' room. Now, mind you, it's about 6:10 a.m.

Why is the light on on a Sunday morning this early?

I peeked in. It was Ash. She was at her desk with her lamp on.

Me: "Are you okay, baby?"

Ash: "Yes, ma'am."

Me: "Can you just not sleep or did you wake up on purpose?"

Ash: "On purpose."

So I went over there to give her a kiss on her head good morning.

I looked on her desk and opened up was her Bible and a notebook where she had notes written.

Thank you, sweet Jesus, for that encouragement.

As I went to get my cup of coffee I prayed for my sweet Ash. . . that she would have a such a sweet time with Jesus she just wanted more and more of Him, that the cry of her heart would be, "Jesus, I need you, I need you. I need you.". . .that He would meet her in such a way she could never turn from Him.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Smooshin' or Thoughfulness???

So my boy has decided he wants to go to KSU next year. . .like live and room and live and live and go to school there. Did I mention he wants to live there? Like I won't know where he is or when he gets home or when he studies. . . yeah. . . I guess that is called college and growing up.

I told him I wasn't opposed to it but we needed to discuss it with Jon and we needed to pray about it. There was also this issue of finances. Honestly, Alec is so smart I think he could probably get an academic scholarship.

This morning I left to meet Christina. About 11:30 Alec calls me, "Mom, I wanted you to know I bought you lunch for when you get home."

Sweet. He knows I love the way he gets his Subway subs and I'm always wanting a bite of his. He got me one made just like he does. Oh, and he got me a Coke, too.

He was 90 to nothing telling me all about KSU. A friend from his work just went there and they've already made big plans to move in together next year.

I teased  Alec and asked if that's why he surprised me with lunch.

Through a big white smile and a pretty hard giggle he said, "No, ma'am."

I don't know. I think it was a little of both.

He then assured me we would talk everyday. I then called his bluff. I suggested texting everyday to which he agreed to for the first semester. We laughed and laughed. He told me how it was only 15 minutes from Jon's work. . . . I will admit it makes my heart a little sad to think about him going away to college next year. However, at least at KSU if I just need to see him and just need to hug him it's a hop, skip, and a jump away.

We'll see. Many obstacles have to be overcome. I am excited for him for the possibility, though.

Until the next smoosh, ahem, thoughtfulness. .. . I might need to milk this thing for all it's worth.