Monday, March 31, 2008

If You're Happy and You Know It....

It has been a busy weekend for me. Lots of family visiting and then going to visit even more family kept me running around trying to keep up. :0) It was a blast.

My sister blessed her baby yesterday and while sitting in church, a woman got up and talked about adversity. Now, her adversity was that {heaven forbid} she would have to be ALONE {without hubby and chidlren} for an entire week in California {90 degree weather} house sitting for a friend. I was sitting in the middle of 10 children trying to keep them all quiet while my siblings sat in a completely different row and would turn their heads toward me and point to their fingers motioning for me to get them to be quiet. Ummm...yeah. So, as I'm listening to this woman complain of her adversity for the week, I was thinking...I'LL TRADE YOU! :0) Honestly, I love that my neices and nephews love me so much that they want to sit by me. They are such little "blessings" in my life. I wouldn't trade these little moments for anything....usually. :0)

On a different note here...{more random Ashlee thoughts} something else I've been thinking about this last weekend...

Are we content with where our lives are at right now? We have led ourselves to this point. Where ever it is that we are at, was because of the decisions we made in the past. Unfortunately, some decisions get made for us, and can scar us, BUT what we do about what has happened is what really decides where we end up. Does that make sense? Something bad can happen...but it's how we deal with the bad that decides where we let our lives end up. We can become bitter and angry and let it affect everything around us, OR we can learn and grow from these bad experiences {yes, even the horrible ones....I've had a few of my own} and become a stronger person. Anyway....are we happy with where we ended up? If not, what can we change? Can we change it?

My life has had some SERIOUS ups and downs. And by serious, I do mean serious. I'm not even 30 yet, which is what is truly sad. I feel older. My experiences aren't ones I would wish on ANYONE. It took me awhile to let go of the bitterness and anger, but after that, I was just left scared. What happens next? Where do I go from here? I became scared to let anyone in and I mostly just holed up in my apartment. No social life, just work and family. I could have ended up a very unhappy person had I continued in this direction. It took an act of God to get me to change the course of my life. Maybe I'll tell you about that sometime. It's a warm and fuzzy story. Perhaps on me and the hubby's anniversary. :0) But, I had to allow it to happen. I could have decided to keep my door closed. To not open up. I was truly scared too. But, I'm so glad I did. One of the best decisions I have made in my ENTIRE life. :0)

I know....deep thoughts here today...sorry. :0)

For more about my happy weekend, you can check out my other blog. Good times were had by all. I hate that my family lives so far away. Just me and my mommy left here now. Sniff. But, it makes the visits all the more fun. A whirlwind...but fun. :0) Hope you all had a fabulous weekend. I know Sassy and Honey Bunch did. :0)

Friday, March 28, 2008

More Deep Thoughts....

OK, so they're not deep at all. Just more randomness from dear old Ashlee. :0)

First of all...I'd just like to say that at least I tried. Now, let me explain. a sugar addict.

I crave baked goods FREQUENTLY. Unfortunately I don't have the metabolism of some, so these desserts don't help my goal of becoming "fierce". Last week I went crazy. I made two pans of brownies and danishes. My family doesn't eat sweets. So, I ate them. Not ALL of them. But most of them. Three desserts in one week. Not so good. Diet officially down the drain. Sigh. But, I seriuosly HAVE to have them. It's like pregnancy cravings {No, I'm not pregnant!}...they don't go away until they are satisfied. So, I give in to them. What else can I do right? Well, I made a resolve on Monday to go one week without sweets. I've been told that if you can make it one week, it gets out of your system {or something like that} and the cravings will go away. I did so good on Monday, and Tuesday too. I was so proud of myself. Well, we had new neighbors move in across the street. We wanted to be neighborly and take them some cookies and introduce ourselves. Nice right? Well, because it's the way that I would be, I wasn't going to make them cookies. I wouldn't be able to eat theirs if they brought them to me. I don't know them or their kitchen cleanliness. I would be grateful, and then they would go in the garbage. All of you that I know...never fear, I'd eat your stuff up in a heartbeat. :0) I went about bought those big PINK Lofthouse sugar cookies. The evil ones. That way they could really eat them and not have to worry about if I was clean or not. :0) I know....I over obsess. So sue me! We've been busy around here. There hasn't been a moment where the two of us have been together to take over the cookies. So, they have sat here on my kitchen counter for two days. Calling to me.

"Ashlee...psssstt! Ashlee! Eat me! EAT ME!"

Really...they talked to me just like that. I told them no! They weren't for me! They were for our nice new neighbors across the street. And then I reminded those delicious, mouth watering cookies that I was on a sugar strike. And they were SUGAR COOKIES. It just wouldn't work out between us that way. Sigh. They won. I ate two after lunch yesterday. I ripped open that package after pacing in front of it several times. I tried. I did! But, they won. I had two after dinner too. The diet is officially in the can. Sugar strike in the can....the Diet Dr. Pepper sitting in front of me is in a can too. {Just thought I would add that in there for you}

Moving along friends Sassy and Honey Bunch just celebrated their 100th post! Congrats! It made me want to check out my standings. Remember that I have three blogs I post on.

I started blogging May 24, 2006 because, well, I needed something. Daughter was 7 months old and still had raging reflux. It took a lot out of me. We just didn't even go out because it was too stressful. So, I didn't have much interaction with adults. Here's my first post on my first blog. Sadly, my blogging didn't get much attention until almost a year later. I actually stopped for a few months because I didn't think anyone even looked at my blog. Nobody left COMMENTS! Well, as soon as I stopped I had several people ask me why I stopped posting. Do you see the importance of comments people? That's right. It let's me know you care. Sniff. Since starting this blog I have posted 212 times. In the beginning I posted maybe twice a month. Now that I have readers, I post as often as something happens in my family. Even if it is just daughter being silly. :0)

On August 20, 2007 I started my recipe blog. I have a monthly girls night group and every time we got together we all brought food. People would ask for a recipe, and I'd tell them that I'd get it to them, and then it never happened. So, I started this to post the recipes that I thought we worth sharing. I had also started it in hopes that my readers would submit their favorite recipes too, but so far only my sisters have done so. My first post for this blog is here. Since starting this blog I have posted 75 times. That's a lot of recipes! Did I mention I love food. Oh, and my sugar addiction will be noticeable there too as I have more dessert recipes than FOOD recipes. Oh well!

Then, on November 18, 2007 I decided I needed to split up my main blog into two. My family blog was supposed to be about family stuff. And it eventually turned out to be more like this one with a few family posts in between. My family members that read it for the family posts were getting more fluff than family. So, I split them up. :0) That's where So Random! was started. This blog has taken my blogging into a whole different place. I've met so many wonderful people. And the "conversations" make my day. It's my true social outlet. :0) {Sad isn't it?} Since starting this blog in November I have posted 114 times. 114 times in four months. That's almost 29 days each month. See how much I love all of you? I just give and give and give....the least you could do is show me some love and leave a comment. :0) you know. {GI Joe fans out know what comes next!}

I think that's it for my deep thoughts for the day. If I forgot something...I'll let you know. I always do!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

August Rush Raise It Up

Still haven't seen this movie, but am loving this song. Please deal with the introduction on this video. It was a recording from the Grammy's apparently. You'll love the song.

Flashback Friday: Early Edition Week 4

Ok, where to go from here? I know you were all wowwed by my mad singing/dancing skills I told you about last week. :0)

We moved a lot when I was little. First from Utah to South Padre Island, TX and then to Port Isabel to get off the Island and then to Los Fresnos, TX for a more "permanent" residence. Los Fresnos was in Cameron County, which is humorous because that's my brothers name and the town was named this because of the Fresnos trees (ASH trees) that are all over down there. :0) We moved into a cute little house in a nice neighborhood. I had to share my room with my little sister, but back then we still had a grand time playing with each other. It wasn't until we hit puberty that the fighting really started. :0)

What I remember most about Los Fresnos.....let's see. We had cable. It's the first time I remember having this. We probably had it before, but I was not conscious of it. I remember loving the Disney Channel. It wasn't like it is now. It was old Mickey Mouse Cartoons and the Mickey Mouse Club. They played the older Disney non-animated movies too like Pollyanna. I loved to watch them. We also had HBO. :0) Do you remember the movie Madonna played in, I think it was called Who's That Girl? Yes, this 8 year old watched that movie on HBO. this house I helped a neighbor girl with her lemonade stand. We made some dough. People actually turned around and came back to buy our "from concentrate" lemonade. It was THAT good. :0) Since we lived in Texas, it wasn't odd to have a pool in your backyard. We did not have one, but my friend Rachel did. Actually, now that I look back on it, I think we were more friends simply because she had that pool. I loved it. So naughty of me.

I went to Los Fresnos Elementary School. My teacher Mrs. B lived in my neighborhood too. She had a gray streak in her hair but she wasn't old. :0) The principal was a BIG lady who was really nice, and the vice prinicpal was this guy that everyone was scared of. Back in those days it was still ok to be given spankings by the principal if you were bad. I remember listening over the intercom one day to the principal letting all of us know that the VP had just gotten a new gun that he would be using for spankings, so watch out! Isn't that horrible? A gun? To spank? Good thing I was a good little girl.

Third grade rocked. I remember enjoying it. We did a little musical in my class...Stone Soup. You know that one? I got to be one of the main villagers that turned away the soldiers. "We're sorry you two, not a thing we can do. There's no room for you and we're feeling so blue...." Catchy huh? I sang it as a duet with my "husband" in front of our carboard house. :0) I was good. :0)

Living so close to the Mexican border, we could travel to Matamoros whenever we wanted. It seemed that whenever family came to visit, we always made a trip down there. It was truly boring for an 8 year old. The adults went shopping and us kids had to tag along. It smelled a lot like leather because of all the different things that were sold there that were made out of leather. From what I can remember, Matamoros was basically a big Swap Meet. Lots of little stands to buy things in. My baptism dress was purchased in Matamoros. My Grandma bought it for me on one of her visits there. I loved it. It was all white and had lace on it.

It actually looked very similar to this dress, except kill the ugly yellow waistband and add elastic so it cinched in the middle. :0) I was sassy. Definitely sassy. :0)

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

An Attitude of Gratitude's been pretty stressful around these parts lately. A lot of STUFF that makes life always a little more interesting. I hate when things start to pile up that I end up having a little pity party for myself. What is truly sad, is that I'm sitting here reflecting on all of my CRAP, and then I read a couple of other blogs and realize my problems are NOTHING. AT ALL.

I'm reminded of this song that I absolutely love. I love how music can do that by the way. Take you out of your funk I mean. Anyway, the song is So Small by Carrie Underwood. Read the lyrics ....

Sometimes that mountain you've been climbing

Is just a grain of sand

What you've been out there searching for forever

Is in your hands

When you figure out love is all that matters after all

It sure makes everything else

Seem So Small

Yeah....So, today I'm trying to remember what I've got. My mountain is just a grain of sand, and look at what I've got to help me get over it! I'm grateful for.....

Jaysen....for being my Prince Charming. For being my built in best friend. For loving me unconditionally even with all of my flaws. {there are a lot of them} For listening to my rantings and ravings and not rolling his eyes at me. :0) For working hard so that I can be a mommy and accomplish the other goals I'm working towards right now. I don't know that I could work and do everything else I've got going on right now. For supporting me in my crazy new plans.

Landon....for his kind heart. For always knowing when to give me a hug {even though sometimes he's hoping to get something in return...} For being such a good big brother to his sister even though she pesters him relentlessly. That's not an easy job...I know...she pesters me too. :0)
Kenzee...for her innocence and for her complete enjoyment of life. She loves every minute of every day and she charges forward into everything with NO FEAR. Such a good example to her mommy. She makes me laugh. She is so silly.
I really wanted to be able to say that I was grateful for the warm weather we've been having, but it snowed this morning....BUT I'm grateful the snow isn't sticking...and I can still hear the little birdies outside meaning Spring will soon be here.
I'm grateful for faith, and friends, and oodles of family, and my sanity :0), for my home with the soon to be done {keep your fingers crossed} basement, for music, for knowledge, for giggles from kids, quiet moments, a pantry full of food, for CHOCOLATE, for opportunities, for memories, for love, my education, my blogs {what would I do without them?}, oohh...there's so much more. The list could go on forever. Which is wonderful!
I'm also grateful for my new little widget that got all of you to leave me some love! :0) I had so much fun with that. I do expect you all to keep up with it though.....don't let me down now!
So, what are you grateful for? What do you do to get out of your funks?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Just some stuff.....

First of all....did you notice my new little Widget on the side of my blog here? Yes, it's a commentator counter. :0) Now you know where you rank with me. :0) HA! You want to get higher on the list? You're not on the list and want to be on it? Then leave me some stinking comments!!!!

And little sister is visiting! YAY! I'm going to go play with her and her new baby {and her other two kids too} today at my mommy's house. Dear little Paige has changed so much in the five short weeks it's been since she was born. She no longer is an exact replica of her big sister. In fact, I don't know who she looks like. I had to ask my sister if it was the Schwan's Man's baby. :0) She's just her own little person. With a head full of hair. And she loves me the most. That's right! The rest of you....Melanie, Cameron....she loves me most! She smiled at me and I got to hold her for a LONG time yesterday. I'm her favorite. Of course, I'm the only one she's met so far. But, I'm holding onto this until you guys come this weekend. :0)

Also, can I just tell you how glad I am that the son is back is school this week? Hallelujah! I thought I was going to go insane last week. It didn't help that I was sicker than I've been in FOREVER, but my two just fought with each other all week long. ARGH!!!! I made it out alive...but barely. I'm dreading summer. Three months of fighting. Toddler daughter is just pesty to her older brother. There's six years between them. So, I realize that it's hard for them to just play together ALL the time. They want to do different things. But, then older brother is just a bully because he's bigger. So, between the pestering and bullying....I might run away. I'll keep you posted.

Finally, this is on a more serious note here. It's about THIS family. Their daughter, Sadie, has just been diagnosed with brain cancer. Cam, they live in Eagle Mountain. Do you know them? Anyway...the mom just started this blog to share in her journey through this. I just found out about it and thought that perhaps the more outpouring of love she gets....the better? Even from strangers. As we all know in the blog world though...even though we've never met {some of us} we soon become friends. I know I'd love to have you all over once the basement is done. :0) Anyway..go check out her blog. Grab a tissue before you go though.

I hope you all have a fabulous day!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Basement Update

It's been awhile since I posted pics of the ongoing stress in my life right I thought I'd share the progress. For me, it's going really slow. But that's because I'm SO ready to get down there. Patience is not one of my strong points. :0) The clutter in my upstairs is just about to drive me crazy. So, that doesn't help either. Sigh. I Will Survive!!!!
Here is the view from the bottom of the stairwell. He's got this whole area mudded and taped.
Here is the same room from the opposit corner. There is THE closet, the tv room back in the corner there, and off to the right is the water heater closet.
This is my room. It has been mudded and taped as well.
This is what we were going to initially have be the storage room. But, after seeing how wide it is, {you can't tell from this picture} it's going to be the temporary computer room. Just for the desk and the filing cabinet. I'm on the computer a lot more now {No, not just because of blogging! I have other work I do online} and Kenzee requires that I be in the same room as her ALWAYS. So, it wasn't smart to keep the computer upstairs, when all of her toys and the tv were going to be moved downstairs. This little cubby room will be perfect for a little while until she gets out of this phase and it will keep me sane. :0)
Ok, I know this is not a picture of one of the rooms in my basement, but I just have to add it in here. Brandon actually walks ON these things. And he doesn't fall. It's to give him the extra height he needs to get to the top of the walls, but wow! I'd have so many bruises from falling. :0)
Moving along here....this is the tv room. The wall on the left with the silver lines on it is THE closet. Just so you know where we're at here. :0) This part still needs mudded and taped.
This is a new edition to the basement. Since Jaysen required that we have a closet in the basement, it made for a little "left over" room between framing that would have gone unused. So, Jaysen decided that we needed to make it into a little shelving unit for all of his DVDs.'s not that it's a bad idea. Because it's not...It's's the mancave. Sigh.
This is the kids playroom. The wall to the right the divider between this room and the tv room.
Here is Landon's bedroom. Only a trace of the awful orange is left. :0) If you look out the doorway here, you can see into the kids playroom and off to the left is the doorway to the bathroom. Are you picturing it?
And here is the potty. They have to use special green sheetrock to help prevent against water damage. Only the tub is in place, but the fixtures have been chosen. We are tiling the floor. Now, it just has to get put together. :0)
If any of you locals have jobs that need done....Brandon does an awesome job. You can check him out here. He hasn't got the pictures loaded to the website yet, but you've already seen step by step stuff here on my blog...and I'll be posting the final pictures when it's all said and done. He tells me we can carpet in two weeks. Keep your fingers crossed!

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter!

You Are a Green Apple Jelly Bean

Of all the flavors, you're the most complex and the most real. A little sweet, a little sour, and totally tangy. People can't describe you, but they love you!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Apologies and March Madness

So sorry...but there will be no Fiction Friday this week. I'm sure you have all guessed that by now. I've been sicker than I have been in ages and it's really hit me hard. I've slacked in almost all of my motherly duties this week {though I have managed to tend to my blogging buddies and post a few minor entries of my own :0) }. I realized last night that it was going to be Friday and I had two major things I needed to tend to. The other one was more important than my story. So, you will have to wait until next week. I do apologize. :0)

Happy to say, I just finished my "other thing" after dealing with it almost all day long. {That's what I get for putting it off all week...but hey! I was sick!} I'm thrilled that I get to live stress free {almost} for the rest of the weekend.

This now brings me to what has been going on since yesterday in my house. Yes, it's March Madness time. And this means, filling out brackets. The last time I played along with Jaysen's "group" I came in second. Yes, second out of about 30 guys. Me! What is humorous, is that I don't have a clue about these teams. I guessed based on how much I liked their names or how much I liked the city itself compared to the other one. Like Gonzaga...crazy name! Gon-za-ga. Sound it out. Just a silly name to me. :0) It made me giggle. So I picked them. :0) Good theory right? Two years ago it worked. Too bad I lost out to my brother in law. He got all the money. I got zilch. Yes, second place means nothing where these brackets are concerned. This year, I have filled out two for two different groups. I am playing with Jaysen's group again. I'm not doing too shabby either, but I don't know how the Boise part of the group is doing. As far as the locals....I'm in second. :0) And beating the hubby....again. :0) The other group is with my brother. There are only five in the group and no money has been wagered. It's just for fun. I'm in second there too...and beating my brother. :0) Honestly, I don't care if I win either one {though winning $135 wouldn't hurt!}, the joy of beating my hubby and bro would be enough. :0) The power to gloat's a beautiful thing. :0)
So, go basketball players! You guys on those teams that I know absolutely nothing about! You go! :0)
What about you guys? Do any of you get all riled up over these playoffs? I didn't know much about them until I met Jaysen...but since then...I've played almost every year. Just for the fun of it.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Flashback Friday: Early Edition, Week 3

Around third grade my mom got this "brilliant" idea of starting up a kids singing/dancing group. We were called the Star Spangled Kids. There were about 10 of us in the group. My mom picked out the songs for each of our "shows" and did all of the choreography. I still remember how to "kick ball change". :0)

Our first performances were done with Christmas songs. I know oodles of Christams carols because of this. We wore little Santa hats along with our signature Star Spangled Kids shirts. And we had to wear our special dancing shoes too. They were white. {Are you cringing at the white?} It was the that should explain it for you. :0) My mom had us perform in Retirement Homes and in malls. Yes, I was a mall performer. It was done a lot back in the 80s, remember {Tiffany flashbacks here}.

I really wish I had access to my pictures so that I could share with you. I'm sure my siblings would love that. :0) But at least you'd get a better idea of what we looked like as we danced around the stage. :0)

Anyway, after Christmas we moved onto Vaudeville songs like "If you knew Suzy, like I knew Suzy, Oh, Oh, Oh what a girl!" and "In the Good Old Summertime" good stuff...We had new outfits too. I remember loving my sassy little white pleated skirt. New dance moves were created for the new songs and we went on our little tour again.

Our last tour was of Disney songs. We sang "Candle on the Water" and "Zipadeedooda"....stuff like that. That was my favorite one. I love Disney songs. :0) Good stuff!

Star Spangled Kids ended after that....not sure why. But it was fun. I love music...maybe this had something to do with it. You wouldn't catch me singing and dancing around on a stage right now though. Too much awareness over the audience compared to when I was 8. :0)

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Lil Critters Hair Barrettes

My friend has introduced me to these adorable barrettes and I thought I would share them with you. Her sister makes all of them, and I am blown away by how creative she is.

The website it and you can see all of the different styles she has to offer. There are holiday clips, birthday clips, butterflies, flowers, ducks, name it, she makes them! And she's apparently coming up with more ideas every day. Here are a few pics of what she has to offer...

Aren't they adorable? So, go check out her website and buy oodles of them! The most expensive one is only $5 for the set {they come in pairs}. Have fun!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

The official "New Wave Sissy Boy 80s Hits You Were Afraid To Admit You Liked In High School" playlist

I am sick today. I feel really crappy to be completely honest. I just want to go and lay down on my bed and take a nice snoozer. But, I know as soon as I do, the wee one will wake up from her nap and it will be over. So, I went to check my email instead of napping and came across this playlist and laughed. :0) So, I thought I'd share it.

"This is the ultimate 80's new wave guilty pleasures playlist. All the sissy boy hits we secretly loved in high school, but were never man enough to admit until grunge killed pop metal. "

That is this guy's description of the list. Now, I was not in high school during the 80s. But I love, love LOVE 80s music. Between the hair bands and techno pop stuff, it was just fun stuff. Here's his list:

Too Shy - Kajagoogoo
No One Is To Blame - Howard Jones
Do You Really Want To Hurt Me - Culture Club
Poison Arrow - ABC
Save A Prayer - Duran Duran
Careless Whisper - Wham!
Hold Me Now - The Thompson Twins
If You Leave - Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark
Blasphemous Rumours - Depeche Mode
Tainted Love - Soft Cell
It's My Life - Talk Talk
More Than This - Roxy Music
I Ran (So Far Away) - A Flock Of Seagulls
Promises, Promises - Naked Eyes
Perfect Way - Scritti Politti
West End Girls - Pet Shop Boys
Only You - Yaz
Girls Just Want To Have Fun - Cyndi Lauper
Safety Dance - Men Without Hats
Love Plus One - Haircut 100
True - Spandau Ballet

Did you get some flashbacks? I know I did. :0) So, go get out your tape collection and your boombox and have a radical time!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Lucky You!

Just wanted to wish you all a fabulous St. Patrick's Day. Are you wearing green? If not, considered yourself virtually pinched by dear old me. :0) I'm definitely wearing green. My son was on the prowl this morning waiting to get me. I wore my green jammy pants last night so he couldn't even get me before I got dressed today. :0) Sneaky me.....
These cupcakes are super cute! Just make a batch of your favorite kind and smear with green frosting. THe rainbow is made out of airhead candy. Just pick several different flavors and stack them up on top of each other. Then slice thin to get your perfect rainbow. Plop a few chocolate coins on and voila! Pot of gold cupcakes! Have I mention how much I love cupcakes? :0)

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Moulin Rouge

This is one of my favorite movies. It's a musical so beware! I first watched it about 5 years ago when a friend introduced me to it and I've loved it ever since. I have both Soundtracks to it. It's got a Bohemian feel to it and the songs are so good! If you are looking for something "different" I'd definitely check it out. It's not your normal musical though, so be prepared. :0) This song is a medley of love songs that are used as a conversation to convince HER to fall in love with HIM. Give it a listen!

Martian Child

I watched this movie this last weekend. If you haven't watched it yourself, you need to. It was such a good, warm, fuzzy movie. I love John Cusack and the little boy in this movie did such a good job too. If you are a movie buyer...I'd feel safe telling you to just go out and buy it even if you haven't seen it. It's that good. Now get on with it!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Fiction Friday Chapter 2 prevent what happened last week...I will repeat....this is just a story. This did not happen to me. I made it up...I actually dreamed it up. Anyway...this is a part of Fiction Friday brought to you by Jane the Sane. This is Part II of the story I started last week. If you didn't read it, this part will not make sense, so I suggest you click on the link and go back and read it.
For those of you that did read last weeks' installment, this week Chapter is rather boring in comparison. For me, a good story grabs you from the very beginning. You get stuck in the book because you have gained a connection to the characters from the first few paragraphs. But, there are also parts that have to be explained. Here's some explaining of the next few hours after the scene in the waiting room. Sorry it's not more exciting....
What have I gotten myself into? That was the question that was continually running through my head. I was not a spontaneous person. I was the exact opposite, in fact. I required order in all things. I NEEDED it to keep my sanity.
I looked down at the little bundle still snuggled inside of my purse. His face was a reminder of the enraged man I left at the doctor’s office. The reason I had done what I felt was necessary. But now what? I looked in the back seat where my son, Noah, and daughter, Belle, were buckled in. They were oblivious to what had just happened. I was grateful for this. How would I explain it to them? Would I be able to explain it to them? How was I going to tell their father? Would the police come for me? I was truly at a loss.
One thing I knew for sure, I needed to make sure this baby was properly taken care of for however long he was in my care. He started to fuss and I realized he hadn’t eaten anything yet.
“Hey kids! Should we stop off at Target?” I asked.
“Aw, mom! Do we have to? How many things are we getting?” My son hated shopping with me. He always asked that last question so he could keep track of what went into my cart. As soon as I had reached the number he was given, he expected the shopping to be done.
“I only have to grab a couple of things. If you’re good we can get Happy Meals for lunch.” I prayed he would go for it so I wouldn’t have to deal with further arguments. I just couldn’t handle the extra stress of whining children on top of everything else. Thankfully I heard a shout of excitement come from both kids as I pulled into the parking lot of the store.
It was then that Noah heard the baby fussing in my bag. “Mom, what’s that noise? It sounds like a baby crying.”
Should I play dumb? Be honest? What do you tell a 6 year old? “Um…yes. My friend asked me to watch her baby for a little bit. He must have woken up. Should we buy him something in the store to make him happy?”
“A baby? Oh. What should we buy it?” he asked.
“Mommy! I want to see the baby!” My daughter started grabbing at my bag. All I wanted to do was get through the store quickly and get this baby home. As much as I loved my kids, their normally cute questions were making me feel panicky.
“Oh, Belle, the baby is so sad. Let’s let him snuggle in mommy’s bag until we get home. Ok? Remember, be good and we’ll go get nuggets!” I prayed she’d let it go. Thankfully, Noah started talking about what toy they would get in their Happy Meals and the conversation was over.
We walked into the store and grabbed a cart. I placed my bag in the front seat and hoped we’d make it through the store without any further complications. With my kids, that usually never happened. I begged the kids to keep up as I speed walked toward the baby section. I walked up and down each aisle filling my cart up as I walked.
“Let’s see…bottles, diapers, wipes, formula, binkies, bibs….what else do we need?” I realized then that this poor baby was naked and sitting in my purse. I could only imagine what he had done in my jacket. “Clothes…he’s going to need some clothes.” I grabbed a package of sleepers and headed for the checkout. The baby started crying loudly then. What would I tell people if they asked about this baby in my purse? I said a silent prayer asking for help as I ripped open the package of binkies and popped one in his mouth. He chewed hungrily on it, but thankfully he quieted down.
“What an adorable baby! How old is he?” The salesclerk was only trying to be nice, but I had no time for chit chat.
“Oh, thank you. He’s a new one!” I tried to play off his age as I silently thought, “He’s one hour old, why do you ask?” I quickly paid for my items and rushed the cart over to the bathrooms. “Noah! Stay right here with the cart, ok? I’m going to take the baby and Belle into the bathroom so that I can make a bottle for the baby to eat.”
I pulled out the package of bottles and formula and carried them along with my purse into the bathroom. Thankfully the bathroom was empty. I quickly made a bottle for the baby. That binky was only going to satisfy him for so long.
“Alright kids, let’s get out of here.” We walked out to the car and I unloaded the purchases in the trunk. I drove across the street to get the Happy Meals and then parked in the parking lot to let them eat while I fed the baby and got him dressed. He was so small and my heart was so sad for him. His first hours of life were already full of grief.
“What’s the baby’s name mommy?” Belle asked with a mouth full of chicken nuggets.
“What do you think he should have for a name?” I asked.
“Eric.” She said matter of factly. I should have known she would pick that name. Her favorite movie was The Little Mermaid. She absolutely adored Prince Eric.
“You know what? That’s what his name is! Isn’t that silly?” I figured it was as good of a name as any. Eric finished his bottle and stared at me with his big brown eyes. “Let’s go home guys. Mommy is tired.” I placed Eric back inside of my purse. I’d have to get out the old car seat when we got home.
“Is he coming home with us?” Belle asked. “Can he stay in my room?”
“Yes, sweetie. He’s coming home with us. How about I let him stay in my room though?”
Georgia Watkins and her granddaughter were total strangers but I had never felt closer to people I knew nothing about. I knew I had to find her, no matter the cost.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Flashback Friday: Early Edition, Week 2

We moved off of South Padre Island just before Spring Break. My mom didn't want us to be around all of the crazy college kids that would be swarming the beach. So, we found a little townhouse in the town of Port Isabel which was just across the bridge from the island. I remember living next to a little tourist attraction type of park. {remember I was only in 2nd grade at this point...7 years my memories are hazy} The park had a ship {part of one?} set up in it that you could walk around on and actually go inside. I remember my little sister and I would roller skate over to it and play on it sometimes. There was also a statue of a pirate in the park. He looked just like Captain Hook to me except the statue was ginormous. If all of my stuff wasn't out in boxes, I'd have some wicked awesome pictures of me and my family climbing on Captain Hook. :0) There was a lighthouse there too {not in the park} that we got to tour. All I remember is that there were a lot of steps to get to the top!

Living in Texas was totally different from Utah. The scenery was different, the weather was different {talk about humid!}, and the bugs were definitely different. In Utah I remember playing with grasshoppers and my brother would scare me with daddy long leg spiders. {It's the reason I'm arachnaphobic to this day!} In Texas...there were cockroaches. EVERYWHERE. And not little cockroaches. HUGE ones. Two inches long and fat too. I just had a shiver go up my spine thinking about them. Gross! They climbed the walls, were on the ceiling, in the corners...hiding. It wasn't often that you saw them, but they were there. And it didn't matter where you lived. You could have had the nicest, biggest house in town and had your big nice house fumigated'd still have them. They say roaches can live through anything. I believe it. Anyway...what I remember specifically about living in this townhouse was that there was this loft in it. My brother and I were best buds even though he was a jerk. :0) So, we had a set of bunk beds up there and that's where we slept. My parents were gone one night {I'm assuming my older sister was babysitting} and he told me that roaches could crawl in my mouth while I was sleeping. He was very descriptive in telling me how this could possibly happen. Up until that point I thought I was always just safe in my bed from the little monsters. But nooooo, my mean old brother had to ruin it for me. I refused to go to sleep. So, being the "nice" brother he was, and the tomboy that I was, we set up booby traps for the buggars. We found fish hooks and put them inside little chunks of bread and set them all around the loft. You see, we knew that the roaches would see the bread and want to eat it. And once they took a bite...bam! They'd get hooked just like a fish. Brilliant plan! We also sprayed the entire room with roach killer. It stunk so bad up there. :0) But, after all of this, I felt safe enough to sleep. We didn't catch any roaches though.

Next week: Star Spangled Kids!

PTA and debt

Yes...I think we are the first PTA that has gone into debt. Not just a little bit either. Try $4500. Just a couple of pennies right? Let me explain. My son's school library has looked like this for 10 years.

Some shelves have broken already, and others are close to being there. They were built by a previous principal and though we are all grateful to him for doing so, they are pretty poor quality. They have held the books for 10 years though! We're so glad he went above and beyond.

Last year, the PTA talked to the current pricipal about the sad state of the shelves. Sadly, the district will not pay for new shelving. There's just not enough money in the budget.

Side note here: this is truly pathetic to me. The library is one of the most important parts of the school! If there's not enough money for everything...figure it out!

Anyway...the PTA Presidency from last year decided to take on the huge job of getting the library new shelving. They got in touch with the community college here and the instructor for the cabinetry classes said he would have his students build new laminate shelves for the school and all we would have to pay for was the materials. He said it would be roughly $10,000. They agreed and raised $5,000 for the project. The money was set aside and saved for this year.

In comes the new PTA Presidency. I am the treasurer. We start the year out realizing that the instructor was not going to be able to come through for us. Nice, huh? We've got $5,000 sitting in the bank for this. The question was, do we follow through with the plan or use the money for something else? You saw the shelves...what would you have done? Both me and the secretary have 2nd graders as our oldest and 2 year olds as our youngest. We're going to have kids at this school until the year 2018. We figured now was just as good a time as any. We were going to have to do it eventually anyway and it was better to do it before ALL of the shelves had broken.

We hurried and got a bid to see what kind of costs we were looking at. It was for $30,000. We gasped. Knowing we could never come up with that kind of money as a PTA, but knowing we still needed to get new shelving for the library we presented our thoughts and feelings at the very FIRST PTA meeting. The first one. It wasn't pretty. The moms thought we were insane. Some wanted us to just rebuild cheap shelves like the principal had built before. Others wanted to know what was wrong with the current shelves {are you kidding me?} We were glad when the meeting was over....lets just say that. To answer the question over why we didn't just rebuild the same kind of shelving already in there....Did we really want to do this all over again in another ten years? My kid would still be in school there. I sure as heck didn't want to do it again.

We decided as a PTA Presidency {along with the principal, vice principal and librarian} that we would go ahead with the project whether the rest of the moms agreed or not. It was what was best for the school and for our children that attended the school. {that means their kids too!} We knew $30,000 was not an option for us. So, I got paperwork and applied for three different grants from three different companies. Meanwhile, we got a few more bids and changed the specs a little bit and had the initial company rebuild it. We found we could tweak the plans in certain areas to lower costs, but still ensure the stability of the shelves.

Four months later we found out we wouldn't be getting money from ANY of the grants I applied for. So, we got together with Principal Hoy, VP Deboard, and Mrs. Rehn the Librarian {I know, it rhymes!} and had each company that put in a bid give us a presentation. We had them bring samples and asked oodles of questions. In the end, we picked the initial company that gave us the outrageous bid. Except, they were so nice to us and brought the costs down to around $20,000. They knew we were just a fundraising organization and it was for a good cause, so they made practically nothing off of it. We love them. :0)

We made $13,000 selling Butter Braids this last year in fundraising. So, I wrote a fat check for $15,000 to Premier Woodworking and they said they would let us pay the remainder at the end of the school year after we've held a school carnival to raise the funds to pay for the rest of it. We are in debt to them. Literally.

They came and installed the shelving this last weekend. All that's left to install is the pieces that will lay on the tops of the shelves.

We had a ribbon cutting ceremony last night.
This is the principal and the librarian cutting the ribbon. We had such a good turn out. The moms that made the fuss didn't come. Part of me is glad, but part of me really wanted to say "neener neener" {to myself of course!}. Anyway...It was so great. The kids LOVE their new library. We created a little reading center and put a new rug there. It's the kids' favorite spot in the whole library. Mrs. Rehn {who was almost in tears} said that the kindergarteners were laying down on the rug, some were playing hopscotch....we are thrilled! It was what we wanted for the library. We want for our kids to WANT to enjoy going to the library. To snuggle up on the rug with a good book and read. And now they can!
Now we just have to finish paying for it. Keep your fingers crossed for us. We need to raise some serious dough to finish paying for these shelves. So, if you live around here...please come! I think it's on May 16th. We are going to have those fun inflatable toys like the slide and bungee run, and we're going to try to get a big inflatable obstacle course too. Even if you don't go to the same school...come give us your money! Buy a hot dog and cotton candy for your kid and let them get a balloon. It's going to a great cause. :0)

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

More tagging...

Because I know you ALL want to know more about me, and obviously Shannon does because she tagged me, I am playing along. :0)

Ashlee's Top 5 Favorites

Five places to visit before I die:

Paris, Rome, Ireland, New York, Australia

Five Salad Toppings:

peas, cucumber, carrot, grape tomato, dressing {duh!}

Five Fiction Books:

Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse {:0)}

Kingdom and the Crown Series

{that's a total of six books people!}

Five Favorite Shoes:

Jaysen got these for me for Christmas several years back and they are still my favorite. I wished for them longingly as we went Christmas shopping and he went back and got them for me. Such a good guy!

I have worn these shoes so much they just need to go in the garbage. I've only had them for one year, but they are so comfy. They look really cute with my jeans too. But, if you look closely at the toe, you can see the color has faded....yeah....I just can't part with them though. :0)

These are just cute. How can I not love them?

Sassy flip flops...I have a few pairs. Perfect for the summertime, which better be right around the corner. I'm soooo ready!

Wait...what's that? That's only four pairs of shoes and you know I have over 40? My most favoritest pair of shoes are.....{drumroll} NONE! I'd rather go barefoot. If I could get away with it {and I knew the floors everywhere were clean} I'd go without shoes every day. I don't like my feet to be confined. In fact, I haven't worn socks {Except to go bowling} for over a year. I wear shoes that don't require socks so I don't have to. I can't handle it. Sweaty feet...yuck!

Five Hobbies:

Photography, Scrapbooking, eating, reading, baking :0)

Five people to tag:

This is hard for me because I just tagged a whole bunch of people...
But I will tag
Honey Bunch {they count as two right?}
Bonnie B.

Have fun all of you! :0) Can't wait to hear about your shoes! :0)

Monday, March 10, 2008

Another tag and some other stuff too...

Sisters Honey Bunch and Sassy tagged me. This one is rather interesting. Grab the book nearest you...flip to page 123 and post the first three sentences on the page.

Here's mine...
"Do many people use the bridge?"
"Oh, yes, plenty."
"Then how is it that we can't afford a fire?"

Did you get all of that? It's from the book to the right up there. Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follet. I can't say that I would recommend it. It's not a horrible book. It's very LONG, which is why it's been on this screen for so long. I'm on page 775 out of 973. Only 200 more to go! It's set back in 12th century England...medieval times. Which is why I wouldn't tell everyone to rush out and read it. Lots of descriptive raping and pillaging going on in those 973 pages. What is interesting is that Oprah told everyone to go out and read it. Oh well....this book will be over soon and I can move on to the next. :0) {I always finish books. I am always hopeful that they will get better towards the end. That...and I want to know how it ends, even if the story is dumb. I hate it when I am disappointed in a crappy ending though.}

OK...I'm gonna tag Alicia, Holly, and Bonnie B.

Here's the other ramblings....

My friend, Montay {who should be having her baby any minute now!} posted this on her blog. You all need to watch this video. It takes a little over 11 minutes, so make sure you have the time. It will be well worth it. This guy is dying. He has cancer and has about two months to live. He has a wife and three small children. He was a professor at a University and this is his LAST LECTURE that he gave to his students. Very profound. Stuff we all need to remember.

Don't forget to check out my last post about my fabulous weekend. I don't normally post twice in one day...

I didn't do a basement update this weekend because there's not much to show {That and I had NO time to do a post anyway...} But it's coming along smashingly! Two weeks left! We are going to be ordering the carpet this week hopefully! YAY!

Another blog I read {found her through another friends' blog} had such an inspirational warm fuzzy post today that I thought I would share it with you as well...You can find her blog here.

'The Brave Little Soul'
Not too long ago in Heaven there was a little soul who took wonder in observing the world. He especially enjoyed the love he saw there and often expressed this joy with God. One day however the little soul was sad, for on this day he saw suffering in the world. He approached God and sadly asked, 'Why do bad things happen; why is there suffering in the world?'God paused for a moment and replied, 'Little Soul, do not be sad, for the suffering you see, unlocks the love in people's hearts.' The little soul was confused. 'What do you mean,' he asked. 'God replied, 'Have you not noticed the goodness and love that is the offspring of that suffering? Look at how people come together, drop their differences and show their love and compassion for those who suffer. All their other motivations disappear and they become motivated by love alone.'The little soul began to understand and listened attentively as God continued, 'The suffering soul unlocks the love in people's hearts much like the sun and the rain unlock the flower within the seed. I created everyone with endless love in their heart, but unfortunately most people keep it locked up and hardly share it with anyone. They are afraid to let their love shine freely, because they are afraid of being hurt. But a suffering soul unlocks that love. I tell you this - it is the greatest miracle of all. Many souls have bravely chosen to go into the world and suffer - to unlock this love - to create this miracle - for the good of all humanity.'Just then the little soul got a wonderful idea and could hardly contain himself. With his wings fluttering, bouncing up and down, the little soul excitedly replied, 'I am brave; let me go!! I would love to go into the world and suffer so that I can unlock the goodness and love in people's hearts! I want to create that miracle!!'God smiled and said, 'You are a brave soul I know, and thus I will grant your request. But even though you are very brave you will not be able to do this alone. I have known since the beginning of time that you would ask for this and so I have carefully selected many souls to care for you on your journey. Those souls will help create your miracle; however they will also share in your suffering. Two of these souls are most special and will care for you, help you and suffer along with you, far beyond the others. They have already chosen a name for you.'God and the brave little soul shared a smile, and then embraced. In parting, God said, 'Do not forget little soul that I will be with you always. Although you have agreed to bear the pain, you will do so through my strength. And if the time should come when you feel that you have suffered enough, just say the word, think the thought, and you will be healed.'Thus at that moment the brave little soul was born into the world, and through his suffering and God's strength, he unlocked the goodness and love in people's hearts. For so many people dropped their differences and came together to show their love. Priorities became properly aligned. People gave from their hearts. Those that were always too busy found time. Many began new spiritual journeys - some regained lost faith - many came back to God. Parents hugged their children tighter. Friends and family grew closer. Old friends got together and new friendships were made. Distant family reunited, and every family spent more time together. People checked a website and sent notes of encouragement. People made and brought meals to the family of the suffering. Everyone prayed. Peace and love reigned. Lives changed forever. It was good. The world was a better place. The miracle had happened. God was pleased ......
(By John Alessi)
So many warm fuzzies today in reading others' blogs. Makes me so glad that I have the blogosphere to help keep me "up". You know?
Becky also posted about blog stalkers. :0) I loved that term. I will let you know that I am NOT a blog stalker. If I have visited your blog, I have left you some love. How many of you are blog stalkers? I know I have several that look and leave without saying hello. It makes me sad. The phrase "comment whore" has been thrown around in the blog world, and I think I am one of those. I don't mind....better than being another kind right? :0) Anyway...if you read my blog....leave me some happy thoughts! I love chit chat!

I think that's all of my ramblings for today....I'm really tired. Long weekend along with losing an hour of sleep thanks to dumb daylight savings time just kicked my butt. Sigh. I need to go buy some milk now. :0) have a happy day!

Sunday, March 9, 2008

We'll Have Fun, Fun, Fun.....

I had a very busy weekend. I had to hurry over to Landon's school as soon as the bell rang to help get the library ready for the new bookshelves the PTA purchased for the school. We were so happy to see so many teachers had stayed after school to help unload all the books off the shelves, so all we had to do was pull out the shelves. It only took an hour and a half and we were ready for Saturday mornings' installation. {I will be doing a post on the new library in a couple of days after we've had the ribbon cutting} My night was even better though...I got to run away to my friend, Michelle's house for a night of scrapbooking! I haven't touched my stuff in almost 6 months. Sniff sniff. It's been hard. Thankfully I've had my blogs to keep me going. :0)

I only got 3 pages done that night, but I got a lot of chatting done, which was wonderful as well.
Saturday morning, bright and early, I headed off to church for an Activity day with my 5 year old class. We played for about an hour, and then I rushed off to Landon's last basketball game and awards ceremony. He rocked and scored FIVE baskets! {Yes, I am a proud mommy} My hubby coached the team, and so we took all the kids out for ice cream cones after the game. They've become such good friends and it's been fun to get to know all of the boys. BUT....I was in a hurry to get going, because not only was I invited to scrapbook Friday night...but all day Saturday as well. I got over to my friends house at around 2:00 and was able to get several more pages done. So much fun! I need to do that more often. Oh wait! My friend is so wonderful, and she let me leave my stuff at her house because she is hosting girls night for March...and we are scrapping on Thursday for our night out! YAY! More fun! I can't wait! I'm definitely needing more supplies though....a trip to my local scrapbook store will definitely need to be coming up before Thursday. :0)
I hope you all had a fabulous weekend! I am SO tired..especially with the time change. But, it was SO worth it! And thanks so much Michelle! I had a blast!

Friday, March 7, 2008

Fiction Friday Week 2

{Afterhought: My sister just called me and thought that this had actually happened to me. I figured the big box saying 'Fiction Friday' would clue people in that it was made up, but apparently not. :0) This is a story. It is not real in any way, shape, or form. It is part of Jane's Fiction Friday. Go check it out and start writing a story of your own! I do love a good read!}

I hate the doctors office. Between the long lines waiting to get checked in and the waiting room full of sick, coughing people who forget to cover their mouths, it's enough to make a person scream. But there I was, sitting in the waiting room....WAITING....with my two children. We were there for a simple check up for my daughter. None of us were actually sick thankfully, but I had a feeling if we sat in that room any longer we ALL would end up needing antibiotics for something.
What I have found to be so intersting is that doctors have had waiting rooms for YEARS. You would think after all of this time that they would have figured out that children don't WAIT. At least not patiently. And, on this warm spring day, my kids were restless. They wanted to be out enjoying the sun, and instead they were being constantly shushed by their mother and told to sit still. As if that could actually happen! They were squirmy and my daughter, who is just 3, kept climbing in and out of her seat. To make matters worse, her brother kept tickling her and she was screaming with delight over this fun "game". They no longer listened to my constant, but quiet threats of impending doom. They were done WAITING. Honestly, so was I. If we didn't get home soon I was going to miss my soap opera and today was the day that Georgia was going to find out who was the father of her baby. I couldn't miss it!
I remember sitting there for what seemed like an eternity before he even walked in. But the whole atmosphere changed as soon as he did. He oozed hostility. His eyes were pure evil and I couldn't look at him for longer than a few seconds at a time. He scared me. My kids didn't seem to notice though. They kept at their tickling wars. I scanned the waiting room to see if anyone else had noticed this man, but found that everyone else was too wrapped up with their sick ones to notice the dark figure. It made no sense to me. I could actually feel his anger. How could they not? It was then that I noticed that all of the chairs in the waiting room were full except for a few by me. I cringed realizing this angry man was going to have to sit next to me and my very LOUD children. I panicked. I yelled at them to sit still and be quiet. I even promised them ice cream cones and video games. They still would not listen, and HE had come and sat down beside us.
I could feel him glaring at my children. I glanced at my watch impatiently and looked over at the man. He began to scream at my children telling them in not so nice words to "shut the *@%# up". I was horrified. No one was allowed to speak to my children this way! I stood up and pointed my finger directly into his face.
"How dare you speak to my children that way! Do you have any idea how long we have been waiting? They are merely children trying to entertain themselves. If you don't have the decency to keep your rude thoughts to yourself, perhaps you should reschedule your appointment for a different day when you aren't being such an a$$!" I was livid. My children were petrified. Not only did a strange man yell expletives at them, but their usually cool and calm mother had just told that stranger off.
People were staring. My face was red. I still don't know if it was due to anger or embarrasment. Probably a little of both. I grabbed my kids' hands and went and stood on the other side of the waiting room. I wish now that I would have just left. None of us were actually sick and I could have rescheduled. I don't know what kept me there. Maybe it was fate.
My daughter started pulling on my pant leg. She had to go potty. Luckily there was a restroom in the waiting room and so I left my son standing outside the door holding my bag I called a purse as I took his sister inside the ladies room. There were two stalls inside. The wheelchair accessible stall was already taken, so I crammed my daughter and myself into the other stall and helped her up on the potty. The door to the restroom opened and closed and someone walked toward the other stall.
"Are you alright in there? You need to hurry! We need to leave now!" The voice was that of an older woman. She knocked on the stall door when no reply was given. "Kayla! We need to leave!"
I heard the girl in the stall next to me scream as I finished up helping my daughter in ours. I hurriedly opened our stall to see what was the matter. The older woman was older than I had initially thought. She appeared to be around 80. She looked frightened so I didn't bother waiting. I kicked in the door to locked stall. There, on the floor was an unconsious young girl, about 20, and a baby covered in blood.
"Oh no!" The elderly woman gasped. "She's had the baby!"
I knelt beside the girl and felt for a pulse. It was weak. She screamed again, "Why does he have to make it so hard? Why won't he leave me alone?"
I tried to calm her and keep her quiet and told the woman to get help. The baby started crying at the same time that my 3 year old did. I told her to go stand out by her brother. Thankfully she listened. I picked up the baby and wiped off some of the mucous and blood with toilet paper. I didn't have anything else. He was a beautiful baby, but there was something familiar about him. I brushed the feeling aside as I calmed the baby down by putting my knuckle in his mouth. He instantly begin to suck.
I turned my attention back to the new mother. She was slumped over. I knew before I even felt for a pulse that she had died. I felt like throwing up. This wasn't supposed to be happening! Stuff like this only happened on my soap operas!
It was then that I realized the older woman had never gone for help. "Are you mad! You let her die! Why didn't you go for help?"
"I couldn't go for help with HIM out there. He would have killed both of them." She was crying now, and if it was possible, looked older than she did just a few minutes before. "I am her grandmother, that baby your are holding is my great grandson."
"Wait. What are you talking about? Who would have killed them?" I asked.
"The father of the baby you are holding. He.....took advantage of my poor granddaughter. She ended up pregnant. She came to live with me to hide from him. She had no other family to go to for help. But, he found us! She saw him come into the doctors office and ran in here to hide. I had no idea she had gone into labor though!" She was sobbing uncontrollably now.
I sat there dazed and confused holding the newborn baby. He had stopped sucking on my knuckle and had fallen asleep. Robotically, I took off my jacket and wrapped him in it to keep him warm. It was then that I realized why he had looked so familiar. He looked like the angry man I had just yelled at out in the waiting room.
"You must take the baby with you." she said.
"What?" Still in shock, I didn't process what she had said until she repeated herself.
"You must take the baby with you. Take the baby and run! I am too old to care for a newborn, and the father knows who I am. If I try to walk out of here with a bundle like that, he'll know and it will be over. You can sneak him out. It's the babies only chance."
I don't know why I did it. I sat there for a moment processing everything that had just happened. I realized how tired I suddenly was and I looked down at the beautiful baby I was holding. And then I remembered the abuse my children took from that man after spending just moments with him. I couldn't let him get his hands on this baby.
"All right. I'll do it." I said. "Get my bag from my son and bring it here."
I opened up my huge tote for a purse and emptied out all the unnecessary things I usually carried around with me. I prayed that the baby would stay asleep for just a few minutes longer as I gently placed him in the bottom of my bag. The father knew I only had two children. I couldn't risk him noticing that I was leaving an extra one.
"Give me your phone number or at least an address so that I can get ahold of you later." I asked the woman. She looked at me as if she was unsure if she should. "At least give me your name."
"Georgia. My name is Georgia Watkins. That's all I can tell you. Now, please, go before someone finds out what has happened!" She urged.
I stopped for a moment realizing this was the name of the woman on my soap opera. Though it was a coincidence, I couldn't help but note the irony of it all.
I hugged the dear old woman and carefully picked up my bag. The baby stirred for a moment, but quickly went back to sleep still snuggled inside my jacket. Taking a big breath to try to calm my nerves, I left the restroom and grabbed my kids' hands.
"We're leaving. Come on kids!" I whispered.
"But mom, we didn't see the doctor yet!" My son said.
"It's ok. We'll come back a different day when it's not so busy." I chanced a quick glance in HIS direction hoping he hadn't noticed us. Gratefully he was glaring at a new set of kids that had taken our chairs. I hurried out the door.
And now I'm here. Sitting in my car as I drive as carefully as possible down the freeway. What do I do know? I have a baby that doesn't belong to me. The father is a maniac, the mother is dead. What have I gotten myself into.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Flashback mean Thursday

I worry I will forget. You know, all of the small little details of my childhood. I have read numerous other blogs that participate in a Flashback Friday and thought "what a great idea!" However, I have started to participate in Fiction Friday with Jane. So, I must flashback on Thursday instead. And honestly, I just couldn't think of a great phrase to indicate what I was doing... "Thinking Thursday" just wasn't cutting it. :0) So, it's just Flashback Friday: The Early Edition ok?

Let's begin....

When I was in 2nd grade my family moved to South Padre Island, TX. My mom took a fabulous job there so we moved 2000 miles away from home to find a new one. We only lived on the actual island for a few months until an actual residence was found for us. But, I will never forget living there. Out my back door were three, yes three different pools. And just beyond those pools was the beach. Sand between the toes and salt water. I hate salt water. I remember trying to swim in the ocean {it was actually the Gulf of Mexico we were swimming in} and the water got up my nose and in my mouth and I haven't been able to swim in salt water since.
Anyway...what remember beyond the backyard beach was that we had to cross the bridge to get home from school on the "mainland" every day. We took the bus home from school which meant we were up a little higher and could see down into the bay below us. I specifically remember looking down one day and I swear I saw a shark fin in the water. It swam along the surface of the water for a moment and then dunked back under. My friends saw it too. My mom told me it was probably just a dolphin, but I still believe it was a shark. It makes for a much better story anyway.
I also remember The Turtle Lady. Ila Loetscher was THE Turtle Lady. That was what she was called. They had a visitors center there on the island that you could go to and actually touch a turtle. Ila was known for helping to save the endangered sea turtles. I have a signed postcard from her.
Why do we remember the things we remember? I realize I was only 6 or 7 at the time, so my memories will be of things that were important to a child. What makes memories stick with us? Perhaps it was a feeling we had when we experienced it? I think we tend to forget these "important" memories. Sometimes we tend to only remember the negative things that have happened to us. It's nice to look back and think on the innocent happiness of youth isn't it?