Thursday, April 28, 2011

Philadelphia Tornado

This is a tornado that went through my hometown of Philadelphia, MS.  If you look at the very, very beginning, the building to the left behind the trees is where my dad worked for many, many years.  The road that turns to the left is the way home.   

Thankfully, my mother, who had been in town, made the decision to go home instead of stopping for a bite to eat.  She was approximately 10 to 15 minutes ahead of the tornado, on that exact road.  She made it home without incident.  Also thankfully, my sister's house, which is only a few miles from there, sustained no damage. 

I'm amazed by weather and what mother nature can do, but this video gives me the creeps.  I guess because I know exactly where it is, and my friends, it's a little too close for comfort. 

Our prayers to those who have lost loved ones in this outbreak of tornadoes. 

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


A big heartfelt congrats out to my cousin and her husband for the birth of their first child, Brady Luke, born in Meridian, MS, on April 26th. 

You guys will make wonderful, wonderful sleep-deprived parents!

Hope to see all 3 of you real soon!

Monday, April 25, 2011

A Day Late

Happy Easter!

Yes, I know I am a day late, but I wasn't near my computer yesterday.  We spent the afternoon at my parent's house, and it was a very relaxing few hours.  Just what we all needed. 

I really hope your Easter was wonderful!

Friday, April 22, 2011


Do you ever think back to when you and your spouse were first dating?  Or maybe when you first became a parent?  And do you ever laugh at your own stupidity?  Or ask yourself, "How in the world did we ever make it?"

We often laugh about the time Brad changed the windshield wipers on my car.  We had not been dating long, and I suppose he wanted to help me out in the "manly" car repair stuff, so he took me to Wal-Mart and bought the windshield wipers.  Sitting in the parking lot of the Starkville Wal-Mart he began putting them on.  He worked, and worked, and worked some more, but those stubborn wiper blades just would not cooperate.  (This was also one of the first times I witnessed my future husband's frustration level reached.  I remember sitting in the car wishing he would just give up, hoping no one was watching this, and praying a drought would come to our area.  He finally got them on but everytime I used them, the right blade would slide out slowly.  In order for me not to totally lose the blade, I would have to stop and push the blade back in in the rainYes, we laugh about that now! 

Oh my, how far he has come!  In the past few years, my hubby has progressed from changing tires to his latest venture, changing his starter.  He and his father fixed the brakes on his truck, and he recently changed the alternator on my car.  (Albeit, I do have a belt that squeaks rather loudly now and again since he changed it but I have no doubt he'll get around to fixing that too one day). 

What about his frustration level?  Wellll, that still gets reached but I have to admit not as quickly.  I have noticed a pattern though.  He works and works, reaches a point where he feels he has totally messed up the entire workings under the hood and will have to roll the vehicle into the Reservoir, comes inside, sleeps on it, wakes up the next morning with the revelation of what was done wrong, and has it fixed in about an hour.  That is the pattern I have noticed. 

This week he changed the starter in his truck.  It wasn't pleasant, and at times I wanted to call a tow truck and let the professionals handle it, but in the end he figured it all out and now his truck is cranking quickly and easily. 

I wish I could say tinkering under the hood is his "hobby," but it would be an untruth.  The truth is he has learned from necessity.  Financial necessity. 

Whatever the reason for doing it, I'm proud of him. 

Yes, he's come a long way since those first set of windshield wipers!

Friday, April 15, 2011

We Went Out Last Night

A week or so ago the teachers from the preschool went to a local hibachi grill for lunch.  It had been a looonnngg time since I had been there and had forgotten how much fun it could be, not to mention the excellent food. 

So right then and there I decided that I wanted to bring the fam back to eat there and see the kids reaction to the flaming onion tower, etc. 

Last night was one of those nights when I really didn't feel up to cooking and despite e-mealz, didn't feel that prepared either, so I suggested we go out to eat.  I ran the idea of the hibachi by Brad, and he was up for it.  We didn't tell the kids where we were going - I think we did say something like, "It's not Wendy's."

We arrived and sat down at the table with another nice young couple.  At first, Poptart was on the edge emotionally.  The more our chef-guy rhythmically banged his utensils on the table the more her face became serious.  It was obvious to me before long that he was trying his best to make her smile, but I wanted to warn him that that is a delicate balance with Poptart.  I was afraid instead of making her smile, the attention would make her dissolve, and I would end up trying to eat my rice with a 6-year-old's head buried in my chest.  She held it together though and I believe she even smiled slightly once or twice.  She just wasn't so sure about the whole fire - entertaining - cooking process. 

Gogurt on the other hand loved every minute of it.  He watched intently and informed us he wanted to work there one day.  Ummmm, I think you are the wrong nationality, son.  Sorry. 

Yes, the food was delicious. 

But oh my, the bill was frightening. 

I knew that the dinner prices would be more than the lunch price I had paid on my previous trip there, but I wasn't prepared that it was more than double per person. 

Before we ordered, I noticed there were no $ signs on the menu.  It would just look like:  Steak       25
I asked Brad, "Is that as in dollars?!"  It was too late though.  We were in there and we couldn't back out now.  So I told my frugal self to suck it up and that what you were really paying for was the experience, not necessarily the food.  By the way, have you ever noticed how much food they give you?  We brought home three take-out boxes of leftovers!

I must not have done such a good job hiding my shock at the bill - the young lady of the couple at the table laughed an "I can relate" laugh as she watched my expression when I saw the total of our bill.  Then you add tip, YIKES!

I'm serious when I tell you that is a once in a year, maybe 2 or 3 or 5 years, place my family will be patronizing.  

That's when I realized - there was not another family in there.  It was a couple, a mother and daughter (they probably had to leave daddy and other kids home, don't worry, hun, I'll bring you some leftovers), and then groups - you know, where each individual is paying their own bill.  When I was in there for lunch paying for just me it didn't seem that expensive.  Going in there at dinner paying for 4 was a different story altogether. 

I'm totally not stressing over the fact that I could have bought a good buggy-full of groceries for what we spent on dinner last night. 

Well, at least  I'm tryin' not to. 

Saturday, April 9, 2011

I Forgot I Belonged To This Club

The "Pet Owners Club!"

Ellie is doing very well, much better than the nightmare I had imagined it could be.  Although I think it's easier because she is living outside.  No potty training! 

I took Ellie last Thursday for her little "procedure," if you know what I mean. 

And it is now official -  

She will throw up in a moving vehicle. 

 If you remember, she threw up twice on the way home from the shelter.  We were hoping it was just nerves, being taking from her momma and all. So I was curious how the 15-minute drive to the vet would be.  I had her in a plastic box, the bottom covered with towels.  She vomited twice. 

When we got to the vet, there was a little Dachshund with a big attitude in the waiting room.  I was surprised at my instinct to "protect" my animal.  I picked Ellie up and told her everything would be okay.  I never thought I would talk to this dog like I do. 

I left Ellie and hoped the surgery would go well.  Brad and the kids went back to get her later that afternoon.  And I received only two texts from them.  The first said, "There's vomit #1".  The second said, "And there's #2".  

Okay, so we won't be able to take Ellie with us on a Sunday drive or on a long vacation.  Maybe she'll grow out of it?  Not sure.....

So far I like being in this club.  I have found that there are many, many people in this club - all willing to sit and talk about their pets.  And like our kids, we all think we have the very best pet in the world!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Which Club Are You In?

The other day I quickly ran into the library to get some books about dinosaurs for my preschool classroom.  I was by myself since both of my kiddos were in school.   

Think back to when you were engaged.  You thought, ate, drank, slept wedding plans.  You watched wedding shows on TLC and looked at wedding magazines and wedding planners every spare moment of your day.  Also, it seemed everyone around you was either about to get engaged or had just gotten engaged.   Your conversation centered around the to-be wedding.  You were in the "Engagement Club."

Then you got married and your club title changed.  You were no longer thinking about florists, cakes, and music.  You were thinking about how this marriage thing was really supposed to work.  You find out that planning the wedding was actually the easy part.  The marriage thing is alot harder!  So you seek out people in the same club as you to help you.  You are now in the "Newly Married Club."

After a few years you decide you've got the marriage thing downpat and you decide to add a third person to the mix.  You get pregnant.  Warning:  The "Pregnancy Club" is the most active club.  When you are pregnant, you see pregnant women everywhere.  All you talk about is pregnancy.  All you think about is pregnancy.  All you read about is pregnancy.  This club's activities are some that you'll remember forever.  And when you "graduate" from this club, you will pass your experiences on to the newer club members by telling them your harrowing stories of 17-hour labors, passing out twice, getting a blood transfusion, and not being able to stand or sit comfortably for almost a year.  Oh, that's not what the new club members need to hear? Sorry. 

It's ironic - the same thing happens with pregnancy that happens with the wedding.  You find out that what you thought was the hard part turns out to be the easiest part.  'Cuz now you find yourself responsible for another person's well-being, health, and happiness.  And sometimes the little bundle of joy you've just ruined your body to get into the world is the same little bundle of joy you want to put back in.  You need to find the members of the "I've Got a Newborn and Haven't Slept in 4 1/2 Days Club" to let you know your discouragements and frustrations are normal and in no way makes you the most horrible mother the earth has ever produced.  

Eventually, your newborn will become a toddler and you'll join the "I Can't Sit and Have a Conversation Because I'm Chasing My Kid Around to Make Sure He Doesn't Choke on a Lego" Club.  This, along with the newborn club, is an exhausting club to be a member of.  But, as you know, this membership expires quickly.   

"The Preschool Club" is a little easier, in my opinion.  There are good preschool programs out there (I could personally vouch for one in particular!) that can give you some much-needed time away.  It is while you are in this club that you realize how fast they really are growing up.  The next club's membership is looming on the horizon. 

Now here's the club I'm in.  The "Kids In Elementary" Club.  Graded papers to sign, lunch money checks to write, science projects to plan, etc. 

Since that is the club I'm presently a member of, I cannot speak from experience about clubs to come.  Clubs like the  "My Kids Are In High School" Club or the "Finally in College" Club.  My sister will have to tell me how to navigate those two clubs!

So back to being in the library by myself, kid-less.  I happened to be there just as the door was closing to the room where lap-sit storytime was starting.  The storytime I took both my kids to at that age.  I saw a few late-arrivers carrying their babies on their hips, opening the door, and slipping in. 

I looked at the door.  It was closed.  And I couldn't open it. Because I'm not in that club anymore. 

At this moment, I know members in each one of these clubs (except the engagement club, can't think of anyone who is engaged).   

Some of you can put your hand on your belly and feel that new life inside you.  You are wondering if the day will ever, ever get here where you actually hold them in your arms for the first time and love them with a love so deep it shocks you. 

Some of you have a newborn at home and things aren't going "picture-perfect."  You are starting to question whether or not you will ever have a moment of peace and quiet again. 

Some of you have toddlers throwing temper-tantrums and testing you at every turn. 

Some of you have preschoolers trying to act more grown-up than they are, and you are beginning to want them to stay little forever. 

Some of us have elementary school aged kids who are slowly but surely not needing us quite as much as they used to. 

You may be in a different club....there's several I didn't get to in this post.  The "Struggling Marriage" Club, the "We're Broke" Club, the "Sick Parents" Club, the "Rebellious Child" Club," and the list could go on and on.  Whatever club(s) you find your membership in, know you are not alone.  God is in all these clubs, and I can guarantee you he will help you find other club members to help you through. 

So let's all enjoy the club we're in today.  Tomorrow may require a whole new membership altogether. 

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Poptart Turns 6

Happy Birthday, Poptart! 
We love you!
Momma, Daddy, and Gogurt