Friday, September 29, 2006

A Pedicure and a Hardee's Biscuit

Can I just say that I will have that pedicure now?

We are getting ready to sell a home while simultaneously living in a rental. Not fun. Especially if there have been renters in said home. I have been painting, cleaning, painting, cleaning, you get the picture. My husband has also been doing minor repairs.

To any honest property managers who may be reading this- God Bless You. Hold your head up high and keep up the good work. Because, in your line of work, I have found that you are a rare jewel.

Do you sense any hostility or sarcasm? You do? You are quite intuitive.

All that being said, I have learned a lot from this experience. Besides the fact that I hope to never ever, not in this millennium or in any other, be a landlord ever again, I have learned that God is in control. Not me. I've also learned to appreciate what I have been given, to value what God has provided for our family, and to always keep track of paint colors. :>)

This morning I dropped my daughter off at school and headed to Lowe's. I was looking my best, in my husband's t-shirt, old shorts, comfy shoes, no make-up and did I already say no make-up? I did? Well, it wasn't pretty.

I can clean up all purty like with the best of them, but, when I ain't made up, I ain't made up. Let's just say it could frighten children and small mammals. I figure if I am going to Lowe's and then headed off to paint, sweat (not perspire), and paint some more, who cares? Right?

I don't know about ya'll, but I have made many a morning trip to Wal-mart dressed in a t-shirt, shorts or sweats, and nary a smidgen of make-up. Most mornings I run into other moms with the same attire. We just nod our heads at one another as we pass each other's carts, sipping our latte's from Starbucks. If you go early enough and wear tennis shoes, you can at least give off the illusion that you are headed to the gym later. After about 9:00 AM, you just look like a slob. This is a secret most women don't know. Consider yourself INFORMED.

As bad as the moms look at Wal-mart in the morning, the men at Lowe's look much worse. Remember- I had not styled my hair, but I had at least combed it. Not so for the male shoppers at Lowe's. But, I did feel quite comfortable knowing that I had not under dressed for my shopping experience.

While waiting for my paint to be mixed and shaken, not stirred, I started up a conversation with a man also waiting for paint. He was dressed as um, "nicely" as I was, and he was sipping his coffee (as was I). But the men at Lowe's have a secret we women at Wal-mart don't know about- They have the good sense to buy their coffee at Hardee's and use the rest of their money for a biscuit.

Now, why didn't I think of that?

Seriously, whether you are getting a "skinny, triple, venti mocha" or a "light, double, organic cappucino", there really is no telling how many gazillion calories are in that recycled cup. And, hello ladies, $4.00 for liquid? And we complain about gas prices?

I have decided that it makes much more sense to buy a strong cup of Joe and a biscuit at Hardee's. Or I could just go to Krispy Kreme for coffee and my all time favorite chocolate custard filled doughnut, instead of drinking a liquid doughnut from a place that has the word "bucks" in the name.

So, to the disheveled, unkempt, male shopper in the NASCAR t-shirt at Lowe's- thanks for the tip.

Now to that pedicure...

Thursday, September 28, 2006


Thirteen Things You Should Know Before Running For Office

1. According to TV ads, politicians play a lot of checkers with old people.

2. They also walk around the neighborhood with one fireman, one police officer (usually the sheriff), and one woman with a baby on her hip.

3. Politicians sit with small school children in the classroom and read Dr. Seuss.
The kids LOVE IT!

4. The same generation of voters who hides money under the mattress because they do not trust the bank, also believe the politicians will make sure they get a social security check on time, for the right amount. Every. Single. Month. until they die.

5. Babies love politicians. They never cry or spit up when held by the
President, governor,or congressman.

6. Whenever you run for office, you have to sit on a white porch with someone and drink tea. Be sure to wear a tie, but roll up your sleeves.

7. While campaigning with "the little people", wear a chambray shirt and khaki pants. If you don't have time to change, just take off your sportcoat and throw it over your shoulder.
(Hold it with the tip of one finger.)

8. Every single politician always tells the truth. But the other guy is a liar.

9. Women who run for office stand with their arms crossed a lot.

10. They are never seen playing checkers, but they do sit and read
Dr. Seuss to small school children.

11. Women who run for office usually wear a navy suit and have helmet hair.

12. If you are the politician who tells the truth,
make sure you say the other guy is running a "smear campaign." That'll show 'em!

13. As a last resort, have people hold campaign signs at busy intersections and wave. Drivers will honk their horns, but I don't know if they honk in support or in opposition...

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Facing The Giants

Facing The Giants opens this weekend in selected theatres. The film is about a football coach who strives to honor God while facing the obstacles in his life. It was produced by a church in my hometown- Sherwood Baptist Church in Albany, GA. The crew worked as volunteers and the costs were funded by donations.

Enjoy a family outing at the movies without worrying about language and other negative influences! I really pray a movie like this can make an impact on the industry.

Visit the link for trailers and information: Facing The Giants

See Shannon for more tips!

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Proof that they read my blog...

My mother-in-law sent this postcard to our daughter. She sort of "warned" me about it before it arrived. I laughed out loud at the mailbox...

I would like to ask for prayer for them as they travel abroad. Since none of you know who they are, where they live, and how long they will be gone you can't share this info with BooMama's band of thieves in the dark green turtlenecks.

So, I guess your prayer would go something like this...

"Dear Lord, we don't know Melanie and we don't know her in-laws. We aren't even really sure her name is Melanie or that she ain't in New York. But, whoever these people are, you know them and you have even counted the hair on their heads, so please protect them in their travels."

"The LORD shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore." Psalms 121:8

Monday, September 25, 2006

Mama: The Sequel

Mama is the one who encouraged you to play outside, not to sit too close to the TV or it would ruin your eyesight, and fed you hot dogs and Little Debbie's, while simultaneously handing you a Flintstone vitamin.

And, you thought I had gone sappy on you...

Mama is the first one to praise how wonderful the Thanksgiving dinner tasted then tell you that you cooked way too much food. What a waste of food. How are we going to eat all of this food?

Mama tells you how much she loves your new haircut. She didn't want to say anything before, but she didn't think your old style was very flattering.

Mama is the only person who will tell you that you have bad breath. Then, she will reach in her purse and offer you a Tic Tac, Lifesaver, or a piece of Big Red.

Your mama was the one who told you that you take after her, inheriting the tendency to gain weight in the hips and thighs. Bless your heart.

Mama said that all the women in the family turn grey early. You aren't alone.

Your mama will always let you use her nice crystal punch bowl whenever you host a baby shower. She is the first to tell you the very best punch recipe to use, depending on whether it is a boy or a girl..."Why don't you use that pretty pink punch with the cranberry juice, the one in last year's Junior League cookbook? You know the one. Shirley Johnson submitted it, but it isn't under "Shirley," it's listed as "Mrs. Bobby Johnson,"or you could always go with the lime sherbet punch. You know green is unisex for baby showers, but, if you make the pink one, make sure you put enough sugar in it. It calls for cranberry juice and the last time you made it, I just couldn't drink it. It was too tart."

Mama always says how beautiful you are, especially if you could lose those extra 8 pounds that you gained at Thanksgiving.

Mama will stand by you no matter what. She sticks with you through thick or thin. She is the only one who would bail you out of jail, using the secret stash of money she has hidden somewhere in the house.

Mama will sit there in the courtroom every day of the trial. She will sit where you can turn around and see her sobbing. She'll dab at her tears of disappointment with a Kleenex, but she'll never blow her nose. (Mercy, no! That would be embarrassing!)

When the trial is all over, and the judge reads the guilty verdict, Mama will still be there for you when everyone else has abandoned you. As the bailiff escorts you off to Attica, Mama will stand and wave her Kleenex, "I love you, baby. Mama knows you didn't do it! I'll come see you every day! Call me when you get there."

Sunday, September 24, 2006


Your mama is the lady you looked up to when you were knee high to a junebug. She is the one who shared her Mary Kay lipstick and her Coty face powder, even when she knew you would make a mess.

Mama is the one who got up at night, sleepily rubbing her eyes and trying to sit up, rocking you back to sleep after you had a bad dream. She kissed away all the pain from a skinned knee and layered on anti-septic and a band-aid. Then, she hugged you, kissed your salty tears, and gave you a popsicle. Your favorite flavor.

Mama is the one who understood when you wanted the red prom dress that cost a little more. She is the one who saw the twinkle in your eyes when you saw it. She is the one who helped explain the price tag to Daddy, and then she figured out a way to juggle the budget so the family could afford it.

Somewhere between falling off of your bike and learning to drive, Mama started to drive you a little crazy. Call it an itch for independence. Call it spoiled. Call it normal. But, one day you decided that you didn't need Mama anymore. You were on your own.

Then, you got a job, got married, and got over it.

Later on, you found yourself about to become a Mama. And there was Mama. She sat next to you at your baby shower. She gave you a beautiful heirloom dress for your little girl, or precious blue booties for your baby boy.

She looked at you, smiled and said,"You just don't know what is in store for you. Being a Mama is something special."

That day came. Your baby was born and you knew in your heart as you looked at those tiny toes that Mama was right. The love for your child filled you until you felt it lump up in your throat. A love you could never imagine before.

And now your little one calls you Mama. She gives you pretty crayon pictures and half dead weeds. Beautiful. He comes in from playing with dirt from head to toe, smelling like the puppy he brought home.

You pace the floor when he has an ear infection. You doctor the scrapes on her knees. You try to explain whysome children are mean and sometimes grown-ups are, too. You tell her about Jesus and Heaven, and how to tie her shoes.

You tip toe in her room while she sleeps, watch her breath, and see the baby expression she once had. Then, you kiss her forehead, tuck her in, and move her favorite friend close. She rolls over and gives her bunny a snuggle.

You smile, tip toe out, and quietly close her door. Sweet. Wonderful. "Mama."

Friday, September 22, 2006

100 posts, but who's counting?

Well, this is it. We've all been on pins and needles. I know you have just lay awake at night anticipating when Melanie would post the big one- 100. Boy, I know I have.

I jest.

In the spirit of Ye Ole Bloggy Traditions, I shall post 100 Facts and Attempts at Funnies About Me. I will try to make this as quick and painless as possible.

Hold still. This may sting a bit...

1. Chapter One: I'm Born
To begin my life with the beginning of my life, I recall that I was born.* (What movie? What book?)
I was born and raised in Albany, Georgia.

2. Chapter Two: I rolled over.

3. Just kidding. Couldn't resist.

4. I grew up in Albany as an only child

5. with loving parents, wonderful grandparents, cousins

6. a dog, a cat, and a rabbit, but not all at once.

7. I loved to make mudpies,

8. play Charlie's Angels

9. and watch Fat Albert every Saturday morning.

10. My favorite kid food was Spaghetti-O's and Roller Coasters.

11. I remember Vacation Bible School and Backyard Bible School.

12. Our VBS didn't have any cool decorations or wacky themes.

13. We ate cheap cookies and drank Kool Aid for snack.

14. On Friday, we had hot dogs.

15. Middle School (known as Junior High) was pretty uneventful, except for the Jordache jeans and add-a-beads, and Mr. Rick Springfield. Notice the "Mr."

16. High School was full of 80's drama, teen angst, Molly Ringwald, "Farmer Ted," and the Brat Pack.

17. I think I was in love with Kevin Bacon and Ralph Macchio.

18. I had a lot of perms, blue eye shadow, braces, and Bill Cosby sweaters.

19. Dare I say "acid wash?"

20. I always knew I would leave Albany.

21. I went off to college and met my wonderful husband.

22. He is a gift from God.

23. My first "real" job out of college was as a social worker,

24. managing about 500 AFDC and Food Stamps cases.

25. Pretty good for someone who hates lists and organization.

26. That job taught me a lot-

27. To plan well,

28. prioritize,

29. always be empathetic

30. but not naive

31. and always aware that one day I could be sitting on the other side of the desk,

32. needing help for whatever reason- the loss of a job, sickness, or personal problems.

33. That job taught me about compassion.

34. I married my sweet husband after living on my own for a while.

35. I think every woman should be independent before she gets married.

36. Some of my other opinions and not- so- valuable advice are:

37. Treat others as Jesus would treat them.

38. Never go anywhere you wouldn't take Jesus.

39. Because He is with every believer all of the time.

40. Expect a gentleman to open the door,

41. But thank him when he does.

42. Learn how to change a tire.

43. Keep some things to yourself.

44. Make friends and keep them.

45. The world can never sell you what God can give you.

46. Keep your chin up, and your knees bent. Pray, pray, pray.

47. I am Southern by birth and saved by the Grace of God.

48. Now, on to some of my favorite things... like Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream

49. Drug store make-up

50. The smell of Noxzema

51. Raw cookie dough

52. Old linens and fine china

53. Having my hair washed at the salon

54. Looking for worms in mud puddles after it rains with my daughter

55. Playing and getting dirty

56. Then getting all clean again with good smelling soap.

57. Giving a gift to someone when they didn't expect it

59. Watching Seinfeld reruns with my husband and Spongebob with my daughter

60. Listening to Aretha Franklin on a road trip

61. Catching up with an old friend.

62. Some things I hate are- going to the post office,

63. Libraries (but I love book stores!)

64. Loud women

65. Rye bread

66. Broken promises that could be avoided

67. The usual stuff like evil, cruelty, bad manners and vinegar in potato salad. :>)

68. Did I mention my love for mayonnaise?

69. Some things I do pretty well are- removing strange stains

70. Encouraging others

71. Starting mission projects

72. Whimsical, toll painting

73. Doctoring boo boo's

74. Washing socks

75. Changing the cat box

76. making chicken salad

77. (all things that SOMEONE has to be good at- why not me?)

78. Things I am not so good at- anything athletic

79. Like snow skiing (note to self- must post that story!)

80. Remembering notes to self

81. Staying on task and organized

82. .... now what was I writing about???

83. Oh Yeah! Stuff I am not good at! Like following rules of grammar

84. and not having run-on broken sentences with no punctuation at the end

85. Misc. stuff- I have always wanted a Wooden Cigar Indian

86. I hope to go to Greece.

87. I performed on the drill team of my college band at half time for the Atlanta Falcons.

88. I consider myself anaerobic.

89. I am an auditory learner and rarely took notes in school.

90. Coming up with 100 oddities about myself has proven difficult,

91. and since you are still reading this,( goodness knows why), I will just

92. drag it out until one of us falls asleep

93. or runs from the monitor screaming...

94. By the way, you are either really tough or really bored.

95. I had planned on posting a photo of myself for this post,

96. but Tom said we had just finished that photo spread in Vanity Fair.

97. Oh, did I mention I loved Top Gun?

98. And Dawson's Creek?

99. I just hope that the tradition for 200 posts doesn't include 200 things about me.

100. I am so done. ;>)

Who Can Find A Virtuous Woman?

I'm feeling a little down. Sometimes it is just not a Proverbs 31 Woman kind of day. But, with God's Grace, tomorrow is another day...

It is less than an hour from our normal dinner time, and it would make sense to start cooking and stop blogging. But, I am having a not-so-creative moment. It is way past time to "riseth while it is yet night, and giveth meat to my household, and a portion to my maidens" so I'd better type fast and whip up dinner. (I still can't find those maidens, for the life of me!)

Never mind that I need to go to the grocery store because I have not "brought food from afar."

I haven't considered a field, much less bought one.

My candle was burning at both ends, so it went out pretty quick.

Clothing of tapestry, silk and purple? How about a cotton Hanes tee and some capri pants?

I would normally stretch out my hand to the poor, but since I haven't put my hands to the spindle, planted a vineyard, or brought food from a-near or afar, I don't have much to offer.

The one thing I can say is that my husband and child still arise up and call me blessed, I mean, Mom/Wife, ummm....that lady that stays on the laptop too long while we wait, hungry for dinner.

Now, where are those maidens!!!

P.S. After posting this, I went to the cupboard and just gave up. Unless Rachel Ray and McGyver showed up at my house, we just weren't going to eat.

So, I considereth Ruby Tuesday because my child praises their mac-n-cheese. En route, I reconsidereth-ed, (something like that) and we went to Chili's, being that Chili's actually lists the mac-n-cheese as "Kraft." I did openeth my mouth with wisdom and we went to the place afar that has Kraft mac-n-cheese, "OOOHH, MOMMY! You mean the powder kind?!"

Turns out, Chili's is sponsoring a rather awesome fundraiser for St. Jude's Hospital, so we did actually stretcheth out our hands by coloring a chili pepper and donating a dollar! (I am not making light of this; it was pretty cool! And, my daughter loved that she was doing something for another child.)

Chili's wasn't quite from afar, just a few miles; we stopped at Barnes and Noble, but I didn't find any flax or wool.


Thursday, September 21, 2006

Questions, Questions

"Mommy, do we have orange spray paint?"

"No, why?"

"Just wonderin'. Actually I was going to make a pumpkin."

"Why do you need spray paint?"

"I was going to spray a cotton ball orange and make a pumpkin."

"And, Mommy, if we go to California beach, we can make a kelp necklace. I will just poke holes in the kelp and tie it together and make a seaweed necklace and stick my head through. Would you let me bring home seaweed, too? Where's some yarn? That purple yarn that we use?"

I think we just broke the World Record for the most questions in less than a blink of an eye.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006


I just bought a Dyson Pink vacuum cleaner. I have wanted a Dyson since they first came out,but I always wait a few years after a new product has been introduced. The price usually goes down and it takes that long for the manufacturer to work out all of the "kinks." Product testing only goes so far. Consumer reporting always reveals hidden problems. So, the product usually improves after some tweaking. (This is true for new cars, too!)

Let me say, I love this machine. I was actually demonstrating it to my husband. Yes, I was. The really cool thing about the Dyson Pink is that part of the proceeds ($40) goes to Breast Cancer Research!

So, if you are considering a Dyson, THINK PINK!

See Shannon for more tips!!

Blue Light Special

We have many educational moments while riding in the car. Maybe it is because I have my daughter's attention or because there are so many things to see that prompt a question. We have worked on reading using road signs, colors using traffic lights, and I have even taught my daughter a few traffic laws.

Yesterday we were waiting at a red light and my daughter asked,"Mommy, why do cars have to have license plates?"

I didn't even try to explain paying taxes. She is just now starting to understand sales tax. But I did tell her that when a policeman is about to pull someone over, he calls a person on a little radio, reads the license plate number, and then he knows who is supposed to be driving the car. If the driver is dangerous or has done something really bad, he knows to take them to jail.

Then she asked, "How does he pull them over?"

So, I explained the blue lights, the siren, and so on, and that everyone should pull to the right if a policeman is behind them with his lights and siren on. Most of the time, if a person is speeding or has run a stop sign or something, and they see those lights, they will know the policeman is trying to pull them over. Then, the policeman gives the person a ticket, and it isn't a good ticket like for the fair or the carnival.

She said,"No way! It's not a ticket to Disney World!"

I laughed, of course, and chalked that one up for another educational moment in the car.

We have always taught our daughter that policemen are the good guys. I have never threatened to "call the policeman over" when she has misbehaved in a store. I really hate that. I want her to respect the police and not be afraid. They are her friends, especially if she is ever in trouble and needs help.

That being said...

Today my husband picked her up from school. He must have been listening intently to the exciting details of our daughter's day, because he totally missed the speed limit sign. (I'll just assume that is what happened. :>))

You guessed it. He checked the mirror and had a lovely squad car offering a police escort over to the side of the road.

My daughter realized what was happening and said, "Who is going to take me home?"

Hubby said, "I will."

After a polite conversation with a deputy sheriff, my husband received his present- a nice, fat ticket. And, no, it wasn't to Disney World.

When it was all over, my daughter said,"I'm hot."

Hubby replied, "Well, I'll just turn on the air conditioning."

She said,"No. I was sweating. I was scared he was going to take you to jail."

Another educational moment in the car. And a reminder that Mom and Dad need to explain things a little more clearly. And slow down.

I'm just glad it wasn't in a construction zone where "workers are present." :>)))

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Like Coming Home

My husband was away for a few days visiting some family. We have been apart before, for much longer than a weekend, but this time I missed him a lot. There is just something about seeing my sweetheart walk through the door with his bags over his shoulder. It is like I am coming home, too.

Welcome home, to my sweet husband. It is nice to have our family together again- Daddy, Mommy, daughter, cat, fish, sea monkeys... and whatever else shows up at the door hungry. :>)

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Now, this is much better than the Men Working sign!

Friday, September 15, 2006

Bigger Fish To Fry

Maggie has moved on to bigger and more frightening things.
It seems that Carol and Howard have started to keep up with their socks.

This is Maggie's latest catch.

There should be some sort of Project Runway Anonymous or something.

I think I have watched too much Project Runway.

Last night, I dreamt that I was on the Today show and I won a design contest. My model was Naomi Campbell. The winning outfit was pink and Naomi's make-up was pink. As part of the contest, I was able to design my very own signature perfume which was, yep, pink.

In the dream, I was hanging out with my gal pal Naomi, sitting in a director's chair with Ann and Matt. I phoned all of my relatives from the show to tell them I had won.

More proof that I have become too involved in PR-

Tears started to well up in my eyes when Laura won the other night. I am one of her biggest cheerleaders since she announced her pregnancy, although, I would like to see her wear something besides that black dress. Do any of you southern girls out there join with me in the joy that Laura has protected that porcelain skin from the sun? I think she must be southern somewhere in her background- tan free and coral red lipstick.

I would like to see Laura win, but I have a feeling the winner will be Michael. The judges act like it's Christmas every time Michael's model struts the catwalk. (He is very talented.) To paraphrase Michael Kor's comments on Michael's designs- "Oh, I love the way he thinks about everything." I never knew fashion designers minored in philosophy.

Maybe Laura will end up designing a fabulous line of maternity wear. She can appreciate the need for comfortable and fashionable clothes. Goodness knows expectant mothers would love to see something in the stores besides big bows and those awful t-shirts that have a huge arrow and the word "Baby"- like we couldn't figure that out.

My bet for next week- Uli is voted off. I'd like to see Jeffrey go. Too much attitude. What do you think?

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Thirteen Trivial Things You Never Wanted To Know About Me

1. When I make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for myself, I always mix the peanut butter and jelly together in a bowl first. And, I prefer apply jelly, not grape.

2. I have no desire to go to the moon. Really.

3. I love Tom Petty, but I don't think he can sing.

4. It has never been confirmed by any diagnostic tests or anything, but I am fairly certain that I am double jointed.

5. Clowns freak me out.

6. One of my favorite lines from Forrest Gump is, "Sometimes, there just aren't enough rocks."

7. I was one of the few people who actually liked The English Patient.

8. When I was little, I wanted a steak and baked potato instead of the kid's hamburger at Western Sizzlin. I know. Weird. (Don't worry. I didn't eat all of it!)

9. I've never had a pedicure. (that I didn't do myself)

10. I have always wanted a Corvette.

11. I think every woman should know how to bait her own hook.

12. I read phone books when we are on vacation to see if there are any people in town with our family name. I don't call them. I just look it up. Oh, and I read the dictionary, too. My husband thinks I'm weird.

13. Whenever you suffer insomnia, I recommend you read this list again. :>)

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

The Winn Dixie Music Collection: Volume 5

Today was a day that could change my life forever. Some people are discovered at the soda fountain, some on American Idol. But, for me, it was Winn Dixie.

I love to sing, and it seems that the grocery stores and the drug stores play the best music. They should sell collections late at night on QVC. Really.

In the baking goods aisle (I may or may not have put a box of brownie mix in my cart), I was jamming to Ain't No Mountain High Enough. I tried to keep my voice down to a modest hum, but my head bopped a lot. I think I may have looked like a hen pecking feed.

I always seem to hear some Sail Away or If You Get Lost Between The Moon and New York City at some point during my shopping trip. Today was a special treat. The music took me back, waaayyyy back. Back to the days of stirrup pants and Bill Cosby sweaters. It was a Solid Gold moment.

Hard To Say I'm Sorry.

Ya'll, I tried. I really did. But, you just can't hum to that song. You have to get it out, because all of us had a boyfriend in high school that we picture every time we hear those lyrics. We are either still trying to tell him we are sorry, or wishing he had told us he was sorry.

That smooth voice of Peter and The Band just made me wanna sing. And, I did. Oh, yes I did. It was karaoke time in the deodorant aisle at Winn Dixie.

I was crooning with Chicago, my friends...

Hold me now.
It's hard for me to say I'm sorry!
I just waaaaannnt you to stay...
After all that we've been through
I will make it up to you
And after all that's been said and duh-yun!
You're just a part of me I can never let goooo...

If I had been wearing a collar, I would have put it up. Oh, yes. I was cool. Rockin' in Winn Dixie. No one was watching, except for the security people who, as we speak, are probably calling the local radio stations to play my performance for the morning talk show.

Rock on.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

More Fascinating Observations

Have you ever noticed that the shoppers in Target are wearing either flip flips or clogs? Well, I am here to share another sociological study with you.

Do you ever get on your knees and thank God that you know me and have access to my dementia? (points for whoever guesses where that quote is from!)

I used to be a Wal-mart and a Target shopper. But lately, I have left ole' Sam in the dust and embraced that cute dog with the red circle around his eye. BTW- Doesn't he look like Petey from Little Rascals?

The Wally World near us has just turned into chaos. I am not a Target snob; I still love Dollar General and hello! The Dollar Tree! But, when I have to venture into a 100 acre discount store, Tar-zzhay is for me.

I can see that you are at the edge of your seat, so let's proceed to The Very Important Sociological Observations-

Picture this. A mom and three boys at the end of the day. You can imagine how tired the little guys are after a long day at school and who knows how many Capri-suns. Now mom is trying to shop. Is she insane?

This is what I overheard from a few aisles over. (The great thing about huge stores with high ceilings and tile floors is that any sound magnifies to like 1000 times.)


"STOP IT!!!"


"Boys!!! Sandwich! Tape!"

This is the part that cracked me up. I have heard of "Zip it," "Hold a bubble in your mouth," and the all time favorite "I'll give ya somethin' to cry about." But, Sandwich Tape? This one is new. I must have missed that Supernanny.

My first thought was, Sandwich- the kid imagines closing his mouth like you put the two pieces of bread. Then, I wondered if you stuff the sandwich in the kid's mouth, then put the tape on. That would work. ;>) What kind of sandwich does the kid imagine? I decided to go with a peanut butter sandwich, the kind that sticks to the roof of the mouth. As for the tape- gotta go with a classic- duct tape. This is all virtual and not literal, of course.

Either way- duct tape, scotch tape, peanut butter or ham, the "Sandwich! Tape!" method didn't work. The boys kept screaming and doing what brothers do- torture and tease each other in public.

That poor mom was at her wit's end when I heard her say, "Atticus! Enough!"

Yes, the kid's name was Atticus. I don't know what is funnier- A kid imagining a PB & J and duct tape to stay quiet, or a kid named Atticus. Bless his heart. He is destined to become a lawyer.

This was my day. Full of unbridled excitement. And peanut butter sandwiches.

Monday, September 11, 2006

That's My Girl!

I bought a new outfit for my daughter- a cute Fall top and peasant skirt. The peasant skirt had an ecru background with lots of pattern and color. Very funky and girly, with a little bit of western and a little bit of Hawaiian print all at once. I call it "Lilo meets Jessie in Macy's."

The bag was on the back seat when my daughter hopped in after school. Sometimes it's nice to have a surprise. She opened the bag, pulled out the outfit, and immediately said,"Oh, Mommy! I love it! Love it! Love it!"

Then, she noticed the ecru background (thinking it was white) and said, "Can I wear this after Labor Day?"

A girl after my own heart. My grandmother would be proud.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

I Choose To Remember

Remembering September 11, 2001
The Shock, The Sorrow, and The Fear

My grandparents could tell me where they were the day of Pearl Harbor. My parents could tell me where they were the day Kennedy was shot. Now, I will tell my daughter where we were the day her world changed, September 11, 2001.

We were traveling home from a visit with my family. It was a long drive and we decided to spend a night in a hotel en route. Traveling in the car for long periods of time with a little one is not easy.

That morning, my husband had already returned from breakfast. I always either go down for breakfast later, or my sweet husband brings breakfast and coffee up to our room. He has done this since we first married.

He was in the shower when the first plane struck. I was watching the Today show. Katie and Matt detailed the facts they had at the time- that a plane had hit one of the towers of The World Trade Center. No one knew why or how a plane could collide with a tower in broad daylight, on a clear day. Cameras were rolling as smoke filled the air from the crash.

I yelled through the bathroom door and shared the awful news with my husband.

"Must have had been off their IFR," he said.

Then, it happened. The second plane hit. I was sitting at the end of that hotel bed and just began to sob. I told my husband the news. By then, we both knew this was no accident.

My daughter was very young at the time so, I was able to watch the news without her knowing what was truly happening. I just kept sobbing and sobbing, and praying. Those poor people.

I remember going down to the hotel lobby and watching the news with the other guests. We were sipping our coffee just like any other morning. But, even then I think we all knew that this was something big, something bigger than we had ever experienced in our lifetime.

I asked my husband if it was safe to be on the highway again. What would happen next? How do we know what is going on? How will we know if it is going to be safe on the roads? He explained that we were probably safer on the road, than in a hotel- full of people- a prime target for an attack.

We packed our things and headed home, listening to the radio to the rest of the terrible news. The Pentagon. That Pennsylvania field.

The image that will never leave my mind is the photo of the person pushing a grocery cart full of small children, running away from the towers to save their lives. I will never forget that.

I will never forget the events that took place that day. I choose to remember. I choose to remember so that I can learn from what happened, and by remembering, I can one day tell my own daughter where I was September 11, 2001, the day my world changed forever.

But it goes deeper than that...

I have to tell her what it felt like to be afraid of strangers who looked different from me. I have to tell her that I felt guilty for those feelings.

I will tell her how I was afraid to open the mail, and that I would always wash my hands immediately after getting the mail from the mailbox.

I will tell her how the military sprang into action to protect our President, our air space, and our own lives.

I will tell her that I was afraid to go to the mall or downtown, for fear of another attack in a public place.

I will tell her that many people died as a result of these attacks. Some of them died that day. Others died years later in Afghanistan and Iraq while protecting our freedom.

I will tell her that the attacks on September 11 were an act of religious war, no matter what people say.

I will tell her that Jesus Himself said we would be hated for His Sake.

And I will tell her that our God is a God of judgement and soverignty. He is also a God of Love, and because of that Love, He sent Jesus to die on our behalf. Once we ask forgiveness of our sins and ask Him into our hearts, He will dwell there forever. He died for all people- for me, for her, and for Osama Bin Laden. But, we choose to receive His gift or turn it away.

To live in fellowship with Jehovah God, we must take the only path He has given us- through the blood of Jesus Christ. Then, and only then, can a person live and die in peace. Once Jesus dwells in her heart, nothing will separate her from God. No bomb. No war. No man. Nothing.

"Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 8: 35-39

A Meme for Kids

I was tagged for the Snapshot Meme by Laurel Wreath. The purpose of the meme is to found out something about your kids that you may not know. You might be surprised by their answers. Here is what my little girl said-

1.Something I Do Well- "I'm good at drawing and doing cartwheels."

2.Something I'd Like to Improve On- "Doing handstands."

3.My Favorite Food-"grapes (she is eating them right now), and fish"

4.Three Words that Best Describe-"very nice, funny, loves animals" side comment- "Why are you doing this?"

5.My Happiest Moment- "My first loose tooth."

6.The Most Important Thing in my Life Now- "everybody and every animal"

7. Then to the moms: Were you surprised by any of the answers? I was surprised about the loose tooth. But I also remember that it had become sort of a contest to see who had the most teeth missing in her class. I wasn't surprised about the animal answers. She was very interested in why I was doing this, so I told her we were playing trivia. :>)

Now tag someone with interesting, hilarious, mysterious or spunky children! I tag Big Mama.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Dear OSHA,

Every day I pass a construction site. Like most construction sites, the sign above is posted for all to see. I used to think this sign was to encourage safety, especially when the workers are so very close to the road...future road... eventual flat surface.

The other day I had one of my epiphanies- The Men Working sign is not for safety. It is displayed in bright orange in an effort to convince me that indeed there are men working nearby. Because, let me tell you, if they are working at any point during their 8 minute day, it's not while I am driving by.

The construction site is near a traffic light so I, the nosy, I mean observant person that I am, sit there many times watching the complicated, yet unrefined dynamics of this sociological group. (My parents sent me to college for something. They're gonna be just puffed up with pride about this one.)

This is what I observed, objectively and scientifically, of course. ;>)

Total men "working"- 14. I counted. The light was red.

One man was standing next to the Men Working sign.

Another man was watching the man standing next to the sign. I concluded, based on the scientific method, that he is some sort of "sign supervisor" or "sign trainer" and the other guy was the "sign apprentice."

I didn't see Donald Trump anywhere, but, I think if you are fired from the "Men Working sign watcher" apprenticeship, you are demoted to the "Slow sign holder" position.

Apparently, the Slow sign does not have its own stand. Over in Mississippi somewhere there is a Slow sign stand factory where there is a Men Working sign displayed because roughly a dozen or so men are working on Slow sign stands.

Ok. Here is another thing I am confused about. If the Slow sign is used to promote safety and encourage drivers to indeed Slow down, then why is there a man holding the sign- you know- directly in the path of the speeding cars? This is perhaps some sort of secret construction worker initiation.

I digress.

Let's continue with this highly regarded sociological study...

There was one man who actually looked like he may be breaking a sweat. He was operating the crane.

There were four men standing on top of a pile of lumber next to the crane. One of them was waving his arms. I think he was saying,"Hey, guys! Here comes a lady in a car. Look like you are working. I don't think she saw the sign."

The rest of the study group stood off to the side, leaning on things that looked really mechanical and important. They were the construction version of the Baptist Committee on Committees. I think one of them was wearing Fonzi's jacket.

I still don't have a clue why I have only observed the Men Working sign at construction sites. Surely there are many more hazardous work environments.

Does the DEA display an "Undercover Agents Working" sign outside the crack house just before a drug bust? Sounds pretty dangerous to me.

And why doesn't the state trooper put an "Approaching Unknown Crazed Speeder" sign outside of his squad car before he approaches said crazed speeder? Walking up to a lunatic on the side of the freeway with cars racing by at 75 mph, is, oh, I'd say pretty dangerous. By the way, if anyone needs the Slow sign, it's the state trooper.

How about the Kindergarten teacher on the first day of school? Doesn't she deserve some sort of sign? Like, "Please, for the love of Pete, someone help me!" or "Early Childhood Educator Ahead- Use Caution" or how about "Classroom Full of Five Year Olds With Attention Deficit Disorder and Poor Hygiene Habits." Oooooo... that gives me chills just thinking it.

What OSHA hasn't required is the Mom Working sign. According to some blogs, being a mom can be quite hazardous. There are rocks drying, poo flying, and sea monkeys dying on a daily basis.

And they think this job is for sissies.

Blogger Beta

Dear Blogger Beta Buddies-

I keep trying to leave a comment on your blog but the blogger powers that be just won't let me.

Is this the blog version of being excluded on the playground? I will go back to the monkey bars now with the other geeks in the class.


Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Towanda is back and she's got her big girl pants on!

Look out, world! Here I come!

This is the kind of day I have been having...

This morning while I was turning left with a green arrow, a man pulled out in front of me. He had a red light, mind you, and he was waving his arms muttering something at me. Thankfully, we did not have an accident. I was able to brake early enough to avoid hitting him.

I was driving my daughter to school, and for some reason when she is in the car with me I take my driving and that of others very seriously. I go into Mama Lion mode. I am like, "Bring it on, honey." This morning's driving incident was no different, ok it was a little different.

I promise you that all I had to drink was regular Folger's coffee and that I am not on hormones, stimulants, or any other mind altering drug. But, for the love of Pete, when that man pulled in front of me, all I wanted to do was rear end that old Honda with my Camry.


And, the ironic thing about it is that I felt quite calm.

It wouldn't have bothered me so much if 1) My daughter had not been in the car, 2) I was not turning on a green arrow, and 3) He had not started flailing his arms and muttering at me.

I realize this hit and run method of coping is not the most Christian way to react to things. But, I have to be honest with you. The temptation was there; I just didn't give in.

All I could think about was Towanda and how she hit that little VW bug in the Winn Dixie parking lot over and over. It was priceless. I could just see myself coming home and telling my husband about it.

"Melanie, what I can't understand is how you hit someone six times by accident."

"Oh, no. You've got it all wrong. I hit that guy's car on purpose."


"Because I am the Mama Lion. And he was getting mouthy."

Yes, this is completely not how Christ would respond. Not to mention, it is insane. Sometimes I think it helps to share that we are not perfect, we do not always walk in love, and we do not always bear the kind of fruit that would glorify God. What matters is that now I have to choose the right way to grow from this experience.

Today was a reminder of why I need to stay in God's Word, listen closely to His Voice, and strive to walk and sometimes drive in The Spirit.

The Binky Fairy

This is not my idea. I took it from The Supernanny- one of my favorite shows. I saw this idea Monday night and immediately knew it would be my "Works for Me" for this week.

A little girl on the show was having a hard time giving up her pacifier. Supernanny helped the child put all of her "binkies" in a bag for the binky fairy. It seems the binky fairy needs pacifiers for little babies who don't have any. They hung the bag full of binkies on a tree outside. Overnight, the binky fairy came and collected the bag. The next morning, they found another bag in the tree- with a very special present.

The little girl was so excited! She had a new doll from the binky fairy.

I thought this was so clever and sweet! And I thought there was only a tooth fairy. ;>)

Visit Shannon for more tips.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Remembering Steve Irwin, The Crocodile Hunter

Celebrity deaths don't always get to me, but this one did. Steve Irwin has been in my living room, along with his lovely wife Terri, on many occasions. They always brought the most fascinating animals with them. It is sad to say farewell to a real legend. Irwin taught us about animals, respect for all wildlife, and how to pass this down to our children more than any other person since the days of Marlin Perkins.

More than The Crocodile Hunter, the role that made him famous, Irwin was a husband and father. That is truly what we should remember today.

My heart goes out to Terri, a real mom just like me. She is now left to raise her two lovely children without their father.

Please remember the Irwin family during their loss.

Now go hug your own husband and kids.

Friday, September 01, 2006

The Ultimate Sacrifice

Lest We Forget

Captain John E. Tipton

Army Captain John E. Tipton, 32, was killed in an explosion while conducting combat missions in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. He commanded Headquarters, Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 16th Infantry Regiment, 1st Infantry Division, Ft. Riley, Kansas. Tipton was a native of Ft. Walton Beach, Florida.

To Captain Tipton and his family- we honor your sacrifice.

"Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." John 15: 13

*sources: Dayton Daily News, Miami Herald, United States Department of Defense