Mar 30, 2010

A Tale of Two Apples.

Once upon a time there was a girl. She had a good life, this girl. In fact, some would say she had a great life.

Often she would hear people say things like "everything is handed to her on a silver platter," which must just be some old saying she thought to herself, for she had never in fact seen a silver platter sitting around her house. Once she heard someone whisper "she doesn't have to work for anything, its just handed to her." She laughed at this because she knew, deep down in her heart, that everyone - at one time or another - has to work for something.

And it was then that she sat down under a big oak tree, leaned against it to take in all the sunshine and warm breeze, and thought about the day she worked for something.

It had not been so long ago that she had been walking through the woods to her grandma's house...(okay, okay, it wasn't actually her grandma's house as much as it was Costco, but "grandma's house" sounds better in these scenarios so we're stickin' with it)...when she ran into a snake right in the middle of the road.

She hated snakes. With a passion! They were usually brown or black, long and fat, and did nothing but hiss. So why then was this one the most beautiful colors she had ever seen? Why was he short and sleek? And why did he talk instead of hiss? It intrigued her, and in a moment of complete and utter IDIOCY (again, not a fairytale word, but you get the picture) she let him talk.

"You're beautiful," he said to her. Knowing full well that no girl can ever hear that enough.

"Surprisingly enough...so are you," she replied.

"Am I? This old thing? Why I just threw it on, I had no idea I'd be bumping in to anyone," he lied, through his forked little tongue. "Where are you going? You seem in a hurry?"

"I am. I'm going to, uh, Cos...I'm headed to my grandma's house."

"Are you? Interesting. I wouldn't want to keep you any longer than I needed to. However, I noticed that you are out here in the sunshine with nothing to eat, nothing to drink. We need to change that."

"No, I'm fine."

"You are most certainly not. You are famished. And look at me, lying just below this big apple tree. How rude am I? Why, I could just slither up this tree and hand you an apple or two...and I shall." And with great speed he rushed to the top of a tree and plucked two red apples right out of it. Before she could blink he was back down on the ground with two delicious red apples waiting for her on...you guessed it....a silver platter.

"Here," he moaned, "haavveee one."

"Oh, okay. Thank you."

"You're very welcome. Just be careful which one you choose."

"What do you mean? They both look delicious."

"And they are. They really are. However, I couldn't' reach as I high as I wanted for some of the most exquisite apples so I could only grab one really grand apple and one, well, not-so-grand apple."


"Oh, please don't apologize. They are both too much. I can only eat one anyway. So don't worry."

"So I won't. I will not worry. I just want to make sure that you choose the best apple. For you see...one apple is plump and juicy, its skin tight and sweet. I can imagine it tastes so good going down. It is a quick fix for a hot day like this one, isn't it?"

"It certainly is. But the other looks just as good."

"Oh, it is. However, it doesn't go down as well. It's a tad lumpy. The flavor isn't quite all it could be. And, well, honestly I'm a little embarrassed to serve it to you. Besides, I'm not sure the flavor of this apple will stay with you as long as the other one. The plump juicy apple will stay with you foooreevvverrr. I am most proud of it."

"Then eat it I shall." And she did. She bit into that apple so quickly that she never stopped to even consider the other one. For one looked juicy - while one looked blah. One looked sublime - while one looked harsh. One looked easy - while one looked a tad hard. Her decision was made. And before you knew it the entire apple was eaten. And it tasted???? Fabulous.

"Thank you," she tried to say to him. But he was slithering away as fast as he could go.

"No need to thank me," he yelled back. "Just doing my job."

Her trip to grandma's house went fine that day. Her next several trips went fine. In fact, her next several weeks went fine. But slowly, and over time, she was not fine. The taste in her mouth was yucky. The smell of her breath was disgusting. Everything she tasted, everything she ate was poisoned by the scent of that apple. Over time it wasn't just her taste, it even became her words. Her words were changed into harsh words, her tongue was as bent as it had ever been. Her attitude was jaded and her comments were critical. And with every scowl and sarcastic come-back she tasted over and over and over...what had at one time been one red, delicious apple.

The breeze became chilly that late afternoon, and the little girl under the oak tree finally awoke. She wrapped her cape around her, stood and brushed herself off and started off down the road until she came upon a familiar sight.

There he lay, in the middle of the road, dressed differently this time - as to disguise himself once more - but still with impeccable taste and the finest of manners.

"My, my, we meet again" he said smartly.

"I see that we do."

"And where are we headed today my friend?"

"Today I am going to Costco."

"What happened to grandma's house?"

"Oh cut the bull, snake. You know I go to Costco like three times a week."


"Could I interest you in a snack before you go?"

"No thank you. Not interested." And with an about face, she turned and walked away. And as she did she thought of the two apples. And she thought about how one choice, one small, seemingly insignificant choice can determine the way you live your life from that moment forward. She thought about how our life is determined by the sum of our choices and she shuttered in the cold spring air.

For one apple, though easy to swallow, had colored her choices, her future, her relationships and her life.

While the other apple, though tougher to digest, and not as attractive at first glance would have satisfied her in an entirely different way.

And from this encounter she learned that every one of us get the chance to choose between two apples. One that makes you BITTER. And one that makes you BETTER.

So no longer could the townspeople say "she's never had to work for anything," because it was no longer true. Bitterness is hard to remove from one's heart. It takes days, weeks, months and years. It requires re-building and re-pairing the destruction it has left in its wake. And her hands were blistered from the labor.

But as she wrapped her cape tightly around her shoulders she took from her bag a big red apple and to herself she thought....."You might not be the most beautiful apple on that tree. You might not satisfy me as quickly or satiate my thirst quite as swiftly, but when I am done eating you I will delight in your taste and not become sick from your poison."

And from that day forward she chose her words, her thoughts and her apples...very very wisely.

The End.


Mar 29, 2010

Using My Senses.

I got a lot of time on my hands. A lot.

I am on day seven of a 42 day "sabbatical." (I call it a sabbatical because at the end of this 42 days I had better be refreshed, recharged and have learned something about myself. Or what was it all for?) And when you are stuck lying in bed you learn a couple of things. You hear a couple of things. You see a couple of things.

And that is what I will leave you with today.

  • I hear the NCAA game being played on television. I have heard it on our television for the past four days straight. The AG is so pumped that I am confined to bed; it means he gets the good TV. However, if I hear another whistle blow I am likely to start dribbling in my sleep.

  • I can hear Remi and Rocco playing outside. I hear Remi talking and talking. I hear Rocco crying and crying. One is really spoiled and one is really bossy. I will let you determine which is which.

  • I can see outside my window the cats sleeping lazily on the trellis. And they look peaceful and completely unaware of anything going on underneath them. And in some ways I am envious; mainly I'm envious of the fact that when they jump down off that trellis their bones won't snap in two like mine totally would.

  • I did some online research and found a strategy for reading the entire Bible in 30 days. It looks HAAARRDD. But goodness knows I have the time. So I wonder if I will try it. But I tell myself ahead of time, "If you do, do not let your bloggy friends know about it, or they might do something fanatical like, 'hold you accountable' or something. God forbid." So I'm keeping mum on the issue.

  • Rocco is walking inside now. Still crying. "Mamamamamamama..." Crap.

  • I smell my dinner being heated up. And I wonder if he will try to poison me. Because I seriously considered poisoning him once when he had a bad cough for four days.

  • I've asked God why I'm here, in this bed, on these crutches, in this condition for the next six weeks. What does He want from me? What He does He need from me that He can only get from me by having me flat on my back? I've asked. But now I'm refusing to listen. For fear He will tell me.

  • If you could see this bed you would know that I have a complete obsession with pillows. Okay, maybe not "obsession" - since you really need to be rich to have an actual obsession with something. And since I can't afford a pillow every time I see one then I would describe it as a really strong like.

  • Something happened today that made me embarrassed, ashamed and really sad. Normally I would crawl under the covers to escape my feelings. But since I'm sick of the covers I would prefer to get in the car and drive away. This makes me realize that I have trouble confronting things head on and prefer escape as my cope mechanism. I'm okay with this.


  • He is about to bring my dinner to me. Really fearing the whole "poison" thing. Making a mental note to take 48 Hours Mystery off my DVR.

Mar 26, 2010

When Mars Serves Venus.

It's going okay, so far. This shift in cultural norms; where he serves me dinner and I sit with my feet propped up on the coffee table. Or where he washes and dries the clothes and I say things like, "Seriously? You dried my brand new shirt. Well, give it to Remi - it's her size now."

It's going okay.

I mean it's not stellar. For instance, one night he made me some mashed potatoes and then took a phone call from his buddy before he served them to me. So when he finally slopped them down on the plate they were ice cold. I complained. The next night I had to wrap my plate in a towel it was so hot. Point taken.

But the man is good, I will admit that. He brings me Chips Ahoy when I need 'em, Vicodin when I'm hurtin', a People magazine when I'm cryin'. My mom is right, I could have done much much worse.

And even though he came home last night and had bought me a pretty candle to smell up my room and even though the scent was called High Maintenance....I love him just the same.

Here's hoping you spend your weekend with someone half this cute.


Mar 24, 2010

Lean On Me. Well, Not Literally.

I never do this, but today I am taking full advantage of the fact that I have a blog. And it's MY blog goshdarnit, and I can do what I want.

So I am posting nude pictures of the Attorney General riding that little tricycle.

Oh, hush. I'm just kidding.

Actually, I am going to ask you a favor.

Yesterday morning I went in for what was supposed to be a very routine, basic operation on my left knee cap.

"Your knee cap? Well, mercy dahlin', what did you do to your knee cap?"

Oh, you'd like to know would you? Well then call my mom. Because I'm not tellin'. And I'm not tellin' for two reasons:

a.) It's embarrassing. It was an injury that happened SEVENTEEN years ago and it's still embarrassing. And why would I do anything on this blog to embarrass myself? This blog is for embarrassing others, not myself.

b.) My mother loooovveesss to tell it. Just loves to. It brings her mucho joy. And let's be honest, she doesn't have that much longer to live due to her ever increasing age - so why would I rob her of such joy? I wouldn't. I'm good like that.

Anyway, I digress...

Yesterday I went in for what was supposed to be simple and short and I was supposed to be up and roaming about by this morning. As I write this post I am laid up in bed with tubes running out of my knee, a pair of "crunchies" (Remi's word for crutches, not mine; though suddenly I have a hankering for Long John Silvers) by my bed and doctors orders to stay off my feet for SIX WEEKS.

Have I ever mentioned I have children?

I will admit that yesterday I had quite a hard time with this news. I cried for a good bit. And then asked for some Bluebell. And I am still having a hard time with it. I have a lot to do over these next few weeks. I was supposed to take my kids to see the Easter Bunny. I was supposed to sing on stage on Easter Sunday morning. I'm headed to a writing convention mid-April and will be attempting a flight and a hotel all alone, on crutches. I was also supposed to play with my kids and fix meals for my husband. I wanted to clean my house before my in-laws came into town. And searching for eggs at the Easter Egg hunt might have been fun.

And that's why I need your help.

I need your prayers.

*(I also need your home baked cookies, brownies and your old Entertainment weekly magazines. But that's another post, I suppose.)

I need you to pray that I heal on God time. If I heal on my time I will be down for six full weeks. But on God time? Heck, anything can happen! I like God time!! Unless it's one of those times when He chooses to make something last an eternity.....gotta hate those. So I am hoping for quick, miraculous God time.

I need you to pray that my kids never feel a moment of not having momma. That they have friends and family who come in and help and make the next six weeks much more fun than any week the could have with mom. Which probably won't be hard.

I need you to pray that the Attorney General has the patience of a saint. He is a wonderful care-giver.............for about 4 days. That's his limit. Which means that for 38 days I could be dodging bullets. So let's pray that his patience is just as sweet as his patient. Sweet Jesus help me!

And pray that I spend the next six weeks figuring out why it is God decided to sit me down where He could get my full attention. And that for whatever reason it is, I give in to it and don't fight it. He does nothing without a reason. So lets pray that I surrender to His will, His voice, and His reason for (at one time or another) having us all prop our feet up just be still.

I would really appreciate it, friends. And I call you "friends" because, well, I mean it.

Love,
Melissa

Mar 23, 2010

Not Possible.

I can't do it.

I want to do it, don't get me wrong. But I can't. I just cannot bore you with pictures of my beach vacation. If I do, then I would have turned into Estelle Costanza for sure and I would be that woman who thinks everyone and their dog are interested in her trip to Amish country and the day she made the butter.

I just can't do it.

You can thank me later.

Just suffice it to say that the trip was wonderful. Rosemary Beach is really beautiful and I felt very "athletic" and "fit" whenever I would hop on my bike and ride down to the Sugar Shack and get some ice cream. (I use air quotes whenever I am a.) lieing or b.) perfecting the sport of extreme exaggerating.)

I had a wonderful time with my family and was, on a serious note, reminded again and again how utterly faithful God is to me when I am utterly ruthless without Him. At some point this week, between the beach chairs and the sunshine, between the mahi mahi and the jumbo shrimp, I had a hard time coming to terms with the fact that I was worthy of any of this.

I am a stay-at-home mom. I work hard when it comes to my home and my children (as they are not always an easy bunch to please), but there were moments this week when I felt sincere guilt for the position I found myself in. (Which was a reclining one, I will admit.) I wondered if I had done enough to be there. I thought about our friends in New York city who are raising their kiddos in a 300 square foot apartment with some concrete as a backyard all for the sake of ministering to the inner city. I thought about Sumer and how she is leaving a two story home and her husbands tenure to touch those who have never been touched. And I thought about my week, my world, my unfaithfulness to even the smallest things. And my laziness to almost everything else.

And so every once in a while I suppose I get all serious. I hope you will forgive.

It was just that, at one point, as I stared at the ocean...and how far it stretched....I thought about how much He had done for me and how limitless He was, in all things. And then I thought about how little I have done for Him recently, how limited I was. And I became ashamed and embarrassed.



And I felt incredibly small.

Mar 22, 2010

Beachy Keen.

What if I told you I was going to spend every post this week talking about my trip to the beach?


Would you stick around?


No?


Well, what if I told you I rode a bike? Would you stick around then?


Huh? Only if there are pictures, you say.


Guess you won't be sticking around. Cuz my momma didn't raise no fool. I did NOT take pictures of myself on a bike. But I did ride one, make no mistake. Which is saying something since I had not sat on a bike since the summer just before my sophomore year of High School. But ya know, the old saying is true, "It's just like riding a bike" - you really don't forget how to ride a bike.


You also don't forget how to fall off of one. Just ask my mom.


Ohhhhh, if I had only captured a picture of that - surely I could have won some kind of prize money or something.


Yes, my mom took a tumble off her bike when her and Remi decided to go riding. Later that night Remi re-enacted the event by lying in the floor, holding her leg, fake crying and saying "guess who I am, mama...guess who I am!" We all knew.


Our week at the beach was wonderful and shall be detailed tomorrow in full color fashion, but to be perfectly honest the health care bill just passed and I am sitting here watching FOX news and feeling like I need to go bury my head in a pillow or light a candle for our country, I'm not sure which. So instead of bombarding you with pictures tonight I will leave you with this teaser:









That man is going to kill me.

Mar 12, 2010

Just TRY Not To Smile. I Dare Ya!

This video is here for a couple of reasons:

1. This morning on the way out the door my husband says to me, "I'm so glad I got you that Flip Video for Valentine's. You haven't videoed one thing. Why do I always buy you presents you never use?" (Why indeed. That is the reason I have asked for a housekeeper for ten year...I would use her...I would use her!)

However, in a big *sticking my tongue out* to you, Mr. Attorney General, here is a video I made just this morning, downloaded it to my computer, and posted it online. BAM! Who's growing up and becoming a big girl???

2. Amidst all the packing for our Spring Break Rendezvous I laid this little booger on the bed and videoed what I actually do for a living. That's right. Some people wake up early and go to an office and get paid thousands of dollars. I wake up, tickle people, wipe runny noses and catch throw-up in my hands (often all in the same day).......and I get paid much much more than money.

3. And lastly this video is here because I hope your weekend is filled with this much laughter! O satisfy us with your mercy and loving kindness in the morning that we may rejoice and be glad all our days. Psalm 90:14


video



And although I wasn't so sure I should leave my blog just sitting here for a week in fear that you all would leave me, I have made a decision.
As important as you all are, you don't even compare to the moments that I can share with those I little ones I'll be carrying on my hip this week.
Truth hurts, doesn't it?
So please allow me the sweetest moments in the world without worrying whether or not there is internet connection or if my spelling is okay.
I promise that I will see you all when we get back from Florida.....
if we all make it back alive!!

Mar 11, 2010

Before I Pack to Go.

Saturday morning my family and I will put our belongings in the back of our car and head out to the beach. You may read this sentence and feel a twinge of jealousy. I assure you, don't.

For some just the word "beach" can send them into shivers of relaxation and tranquility. But these must be people who travel to the beach alone. Without children. Or their mothers. Whereas I....I am taking both.

And so here are a few things (in no particular order) that need to be done before go.

1. Lose weight.

This won't be happening. I would like for it to happen, but at this late in the game I would have to go to Walgreens and by that Hollywood 48 Hour diet in a bottle and, well, I've tried it before and let's just say there are not near enough public restrooms at the beach to hold this ol' girl when she has flushed her system with the same thing Nicole Richi uses. Honestly.

2. Buy a new bathing suit.

Again, not gonna happen. But this is all the AG's fault. When I asked him if I could order a new one his exact words were, "If you had to peel that one off of yourself last year then you can peel it off of yourself this year." Why doesn't he just admit there's something sexy about watching a woman spill out of her swimsuit? Probably because there isn't.

3. Train my children not to get up at the CRACK OF DAWN.

Tried. Never ever gonna work. Never.

4. Get pedicure.

This will be accomplished this afternoon. Which is good, because I've already listed four things and three of them are impossible to accomplish, so I'm starting to feel kind of like a loser. So I guess what I'm saying is, on a list of things that need to be done before I go to the beach, the only thing that can actually happen is something I pay the Vietnamese to help me with. Figures!

5. Try to convince my mom that a relaxing week at the beach is not the time to convince me to have laser hair removal, that putting "a corn pad on it" does not heal everything and that I do not, under any circumstances, have my uncle James' chin.

Tried. Never ever gonna work. Never.

Mar 9, 2010

Anyone Want to Grab Coffee With Me and Talk About This?

I sat with someone yesterday who talked to me about "what God was doing" in their life. As I sat and listened I prayed quietly that they would not - under any circumstances - ask me "what God was doing" in my life.

Because He's doing a whole bunch of ...well, nothing.

Don't get me wrong, this isn't God's fault. So please don't confuse His immovability with my laziness. Please. Don't blame Him for something that is clearly not His fault. If memory serves me correctly then I think I remember hearing once or twice or 40 million times that God moves when we ask Him too. He doesn't force Himself on us or "assume" any place in our lives without invitation. Therefore if God isn't doing anything in my life right now it might be because I haven't granted Him access to.

(And herein lies the part of the post where I beat myself up.)

Which is really quite amazing considering all I need Him for. Not inviting God to come in and be a part of all I have going on is kind of like having a Mary Kay party and not inviting the consultant. Its kind of like having a birthday party and forgetting to invite the birthday girl. Or like throwing a baby shower when there is clearly no baby. In other words, its all in vain.

Though if I really think about it I'm sure I can do just fine without Him.

I certainly don't need Him for my marriage. Oh no. Marriage is super easy. Who needs help with their marriage? There's nothing more fun than bringing two people together without any acknowledgment of a need for a Saviour. Oh yeah...that's a piece of cake.

Or my kids? What kids? I don't need help with my kids. I got that totally under control. Parenting is a cinch and I've got it allllllllll figured out. Which brings me to the next thing I don't need God for....

Who said I have anger issues? Who said I need to learn to demonstrate patience when I can so clearly demonstrate intolerance for any and all things? Patience and a life of peace or being a raving lunatic? Who wouldn't pick being a raving lunatic at all times. Much. Much. More fun.

And this weight has certainly not gotten the best of me. Oh no, I have it licked. Just like that chocolate dipped ice cream I got yesterday afternoon. The last thing I need is someone kind, caring, compassionate on my side. I prefer to do this weight loss thing alone. Not with someone who (literally) wrote the book on self-control and discipline. Thanks, but no thanks.

(And herein lies the part of the post where I cry. Really cry. Hard.)

Sometimes I suppose its not sitting with someone and sharing "what God is doing" in our lives as much as it is sitting with someone and saying, "Look, He's in it. And that's all I know. He's in here. Taking control over the things I have made havoc of. Bringing life back into the things I left dormant. Breathing breath into the things I killed. I don't know that He's calling me to the mission field right now as much as I know He's at least calling me. And right now, it's just nice to hear Him say my name."

(And herein lies the part of the post where I turn my computer off. And we talk.)

Mar 8, 2010

Sandy And I Are Going To Laugh and Laugh About This Over Lunch.

What a weekend it has been.

First, I win an award. Then Sandra Bullock wins an award. And mixed in the middle was Remi pulling her pants down at the Farmers Market. Wow. Good times, good times.

So on Friday I noticed that several people kept commenting on my blog about this award I had won. You have to know that I immediately thought two things:
1. How embarrassing that they have me confused with someone else.
2. Do you think this could, at all, be about my hair?

Alas, it was not about my hair, and I did in fact win an award. Well, a blog award. Which is not, ya know, an Oscar or anything, but its better than the time my high school voted me Worst Driver two years running!!

And yet not as good as the time I entered a chili-cook off, had made too much chili so I had to pour it in two separate pots and ended up winning first and second place. Oh yeah! That's right. Hate the game - not the player, people!

So Internet Cafe Devotions gave out an award to the Top 100 blogs based off of the nominations they received and I came in Second on the Cup of The Day Blog: This blogger is the "cup" you couldn't do without. You find yourself daily drawn in to sit a spell. You leave inspired and encouraged.

Did you hear that? Second. Which is wonderful considering I didn't even know I was nominated, but horrible if I go and read all the wisdom and humor from the lady that came in first. I'm not sure who she is, but chances are she was never voted worst driver and her chili is scared of my chili. I'm just sayin'. Actually, I'm sure she's wonderful so here is her blog, go check her out. *Do I not totally remind y'all of Jesus right now? How I am not at all hindered by her number one position or threatened that ya'll will leave me for her? Sometimes I scare myself, I'm so good.

We celebrated my big win this weekend with lots of 4-wheeler riding and shrub buying. And no, that is not "code" for anything. I actually rode a 4-wheeler. And I actually went shopping for shrubs. (My aunt is so relieved right now, as she probably thought I had gotten involved in some redneck gang who vandalizes the elderly on fast moving vehicles and deals "shrub" on the side.) Actually we weren't celebrating as much as we were just thrilled the weather was perfect and we wanted out of our little Snow White cottage.

We also ate some chicken.

Don't go gettin' crazy jealous on me now, okay?

And then last night I topped off the weekend with watching Sandra Bullock receive her much deserved Academy Award. Yes, the Academy may have given it to her for The Blind Side (which was wonderful, might I add) but I believe she won it for all the times I stayed up late watching While You Were Sleeping with hot chocolate in one hand and a Kleenex in the other. ("Peter once asked me when I fell in love with Jack. And I told him. It was 'while you were sleeping.'")

Or the times I laughed till my side hurt watching her in Miss Congeniality ("...its lite beer and she's gonna throw it up anyway.")

Or cringing when she had to interview for a job with an old classmate on Hope Floats ("I know what you meant Birdee...people change as they get older, we improve...but gosh, you look exactly the same.")

I would say I'm her biggest fan, but then again it might be that lady that beat me out for first place, who can really say. All I know is last night I was so proud of Sandy that I raised my ol' glass of iced tea to the television set and said, "I could be wearing a dress like that right now....if it weren't for eatin' all that dang chili!"

And your favorite Sandra Bullock movie is?

Mar 5, 2010

Letterman Would Be Proud.

Top 10 Signs Your Mother Has A New i phone.

10. Her friends are now contacting you because they suddenly can't reach her on her phone. In the one week she's had it you have made her two lunch appointments and a dental cleaning.

9. She carries it around the house staring at it like its kryptonite.

8. She says she is learning to "do that new thing everyone is doing. You know that thing people talk about. Sexting." She means texting.

7. When you ask her to text you she replies with "only if you text me first."

6. She accidentally assigned a doorbell as her ring tone.
She walked to the front door 12 times the first day.

5. She then assigned a motorcycle starting up as her next ring tone. She didn't answer her phone for a week and thought her neighbors had bought a bike.

4. She said that no one ever calls her she doesn't even know why she needs a phone. When you check her phone she has 27 missed calls.

3. She shows you the pictures she took on her new phone. She is so proud. They look like she was taking pictures of a blood vessel; you can't make out any of them and she's says there all of her grandkids.

2. She bought one in purple because she "just bought a new pair of hoochie shoes that it will match perfectly."

1. The last conversation you had went like this:
"How do I just lay this thing down?"
"You mean turn it off?"
"No, I mean lay it down. What side do I lay it down on?"

Mar 4, 2010

Coming Home Coming.

Dear Attorney General,

Oftentimes when you are out of town I will write you letters and post them here on my blog because I know you'll read them first thing when you wake up in the morning. Right? First thing, right? I can't hear you, speak up.

But normally when I write these letters to you its because I've done something silly, like........go to Target. But you do not have to worry about that this time, no sirree. Not this time. I have been a good little budget team player. You would be so proud of me. I haven't gotten my hair or nails done one time since you've been out of town, can you believe that? And you've been gone since Tuesday!! Can we say REFORMED?

What I was actually writing to you about today is just something I want you to think on, mull over, ponder and pray about when you are flying home tomorrow, okay? You probably have plenty of time to just sit....and think....and do absolutely nothing...when you are sitting on that nice, big, airplane. That big airplane where they bring you drinks and peanuts right to your seat. (Hold on, please honey, while I pick up that bowl of cereal your son just spilt on the floor. Ask for a pillow or something while I do this; I don't want your neck to start hurting.)

Okay, now I'm back.

Ya know, instead of thinking about it on the plane you might want to think about it while you are in your hotel room tonight. If you have time. What am I saying? Of course you will. You'll have all night, just to sit and think. Unless of course you're watching a movie. Or having some dinner delivered to your room. Or maybe taking a long bath. I know those things can be taxing and I do. not. want to put too much on you. (I'm sorry, really quickly let me run go get your son. He's standing in the toilet again. Draw yourself a bath, I'll be right back.)

Now then, that's better. He's all dried off and I hope you are enjoying some relaxing down time and that you don't have to answer that pesky room service door when they knock. I know that's a bother. (Oops, someones got gum stuck in their hair. If you'll just let me...)

So was your day good? Mine was. Did you spend yours with strangers you don't know going out and talking business all day? I spent mine with two people under five who in the span of one hour bit, licked and kicked...themselves. Did the people you were with ever do that? Did they ever take their pants off and ask you to smell them? Did they shampoo their dry head and then walk through the room like it was no big deal? Did they ever ask for a juice box 87 times in a row just as you picked up the phone to talk? No? They didn't. That's weird.

So what do you talk about when you meet these other business people? By any chance do they talk about their roots (and I ain't talkin' ancestry), the trouble they're having with their neck and the fact that they washed their Spanx in hot water and now they can only fit on one leg? Because that is exactly what I spent my entire evening discussing with my mother. My mother! Did you get that? I spent the entire evening with my mother. When are you coming home?

I'm probably driving you crazy with this going back and forth aren't I? Its like when you call someone to talk and they continually talk to their kids in the background. I hate that! (Rocco, please don't lock your sister out of the house.) I have always thought that was so rude. (Remi, put the matches back!) So I just wanted to apologize to you for doing that on the phone last night. I could tell you were really tired after eating dinner out with your clients and the last thing you needed was me being unable to talk when you called.

By the way, how was your dinner? Was it good? Cooked just like you like it? Great. Great. Mine was cold and wet. Oh, wait, that was the kiddos. They had cereal. I had a handful of dry cereal, two pieces of pineapple and something fried that I found waaayyyy back in the back of the fridge. But I don't need all that fancy stuff like steak and lobster. They can keep that for the businessmen who come in for dinner all tired from their afternoon of Starbucks meetings and the lousy bed in the Hyatt Regency, right?. Poor guys. (Okay, this is the last time, I promise, but someone let the dog in and she has wet paws. Guess who cleans it up?? ME! You might think it would be a maid since that is who cleans up your mess every morning while you are out of town, but nope! It's not a maid, it's me. Do I sound hostile? I assure you I am not.)

So anyway, what I had originally written this letter for was to ask you.......

Ya know what? I've already forgotten. It must not have been important. See there? I get so excited about you coming home that I completely forget what it is I need to ask you. So I'll sign off now. Besides, I think I've said it all.

Haven't I?

I love you. Come home soon. I'm sure you'll need the rest.

Melissa

Mar 3, 2010

What I Wouldn't Give To Be Feeding That Cheetah Right Now.

At this moment, possibly as you are reading this post, I am on a field trip.

With about 30 three year olds.

And Rocco.

We are at the zoo.

I am pushing a caveman in a stroller while he points and grunts and expects me to know what he's talking about.

And I am doing that while making sure Remi doesn't share our Coke with that kid with the constant nose bleed.

And I am doing all of that while pretending to...
a.) be good at doing "home roomy" things, and
b.) be interested in how early the other mothers got up and ran this morning.
"I got up with the runs, too!"
"Uh, no, Melissa. We said we get up and run. Not get up with the runs."
"Oh. Well, then, no. I don't do that."

So while you are sitting there at your computer, perhaps you are at your home office, or you are already at your desk at work, I would like for you to do me one favor. Pick up your stapler. Got it? Okay, now, staple your hand.

That is still not as painful as this.

Mar 2, 2010

Yeah I Know, I Saw It.

If today you are looking for a recap then you came to the wrong place. How can I possibly recap 14 hours of The Bachelor? It can't be done. I've tried. So instead this post will be an expose' on opinion.

Mine.

Last night on The Bachelor: After The Final Rose Jake chose Vienna. I knew he would, US Magazine told me several weeks ago. (They ruin everything for me and yet I continually buy them.) And although I am not entirely happy with his choice, I am also not entirely sad. And also, I don't entirely care.

Which makes me sad to say, honestly. Because at some point this season I did care. But then I lost interest. Do you think I am starting to lose interest in this show? Could this be happening? Do you think I am - dare I say it - growing up?

Nooooooooooo. This can't be.

For years I have been the girl that sat quietly by and bit her lip while all those around me not only dissed The Bachelor/Bachelorette series itself, but also all of those who choose to participate. Who am I to say why some people decide to go on television to find love? Why do some people go on television in a sports bra and spandex to lose weight? Why do some people eat rice and coconut for 30 days, sleep in the rain and forgo bathing? Who knows. All I know is, I watch it. Reality television must have had my picture up in their offices on the day they decided all these shows because I. am. a. sucker.

Yet there are those who say my obsession with The Bachelor is ridiculous, while they run home to make sure their TiVo is set for Jack Bauer. Honestly? The AG loves him some Jack, make no mistake about it, and I am only dogging it because he is out of town and can't stop me from writing this. But how many times can one man save the world? And yet you find it hard to believe that 25 girls would compete for a pilot. Apparently you've never met 25 girls.

But all that being said, there was something about The Bachelor that just grew a little stale for me towards the end of this season. Maybe it was all the spoilers that were all over the media and magazines. Maybe knowing what's going to happen before it happens really does take the fun out of it. (Spoiler alert: Jack Bauer saves the world again. You heard it here, people!) Or maybe, I'm moving on. Even American Idol is holding nothing for me this season. And it's not the talent. And it's certainly not the removal of Paula. It's just.......blah. It's all just kind of blah.

And so, last night, I watched three of the most awkward moments culminate on one television show:
1. Vienna meeting Jakes parents and their look of total disgust.
2. Jake telling Tenley that there was no "heat" when what he really meant was "how do you expect me to know if there's chemistry if you keep acting with total class and moral integrity?"
3. Jeffrey Osborn returning to sing On The Wings of Love which was cheezy in 1982 and was therefore nausearific in 2010.

And although one episode had all those wonderful moments it still wasn't enough to keep me from thinking about...the dirty dishes in my sink, the laundry in my dryer, the runny nose of my one year old, the way my three year old lit up today when I painted her nails, how much I'll miss The AG when he leaves town tomorrow, how my two kiddos are getting shots tomorrow and they have no idea and my need to fix my parents a meal to thank them for all the free babysitting they've provided lately.

And then it hit me! This is my reality.

And though you'll never catch me in spandex, I wouldn't trade it for the world. And certainly not a pilot.

Mar 1, 2010

Crime Stalkers.

Well, I can tell you one thing about this weekend: It was better than last weekend.

Of course last weekend all four of us were puking, so I'm not sure that's really saying a lot. I mean, we did finally get to see Shutter Island. And speaking of the CRIMINALLY INSANE...

Right about the time The Attorney General and I moved in to town so did a string of burglaries here in the 75904. Now normally when several robberies in the same area are committed the police are summoned, a report is written up and if you're lucky, an arrest is made and your goods are returned.

Not here. If you live in the 75904 the police are never called, a report is never written and instead of making an arrest you simply put my Granny on the case. She can do more damage to a burglars reputation than a thousand policeman on a 12-hour shift.

Granny has decided she knows who the burglar is. She has nothing tangible to back this up, of course, but she doesn't really need it. She believes without a doubt that she knows who is responsible and who is going to contest her? She sits at home every day and peers out her blinds like the nosy neighbor on Bewitched. She knows more about what goes on along Ben Dunn road than Mr. Ben Dunn himself, God rest his soul.

Now unfortunately for our burglar she has dubbed him Fat Boy. That's right. (I once made the mistake of asking why she called him Fat Boy. She looked at me with great disgust and replied, "Cuz he's FAT!" Remind me never to break into a life of crime.) Granny believes Fat Boy breaks into our homes when we are at church, steals our tools and continues to live amongst us; roaming free without penalty of law. Until this weekend...

Here's where the criminally insane reference comes in. (And you thought I had already gotten to it. Silly you.)

This weekend my Granny started our very own Neighborhood Watch program. I had heard of Neighborhood Watch programs before but had always been under the impression they were for, well, neighborhoods. Personally I don't think you should call 20 homes down a one lane road who all have some 15 acres between them a "Neighborhood Watch" program (is there a "Milling Around and Looking" Program?) but I would have been asked to leave had I mentioned that at Saturdays meeting.

Which brings me to Saturdays meeting.

On Saturday morning 20 of our neighbors showed up for a meeting that my Granny had assembled. My aunt Melba went because the stereo had been stolen out of her car (which also means there was a good chance he got a Bryan Adams CD circa 1988 in the process, god forbid.) Brother Bud went because he apparently had a shovel, an igloo cooler and a dome tent stolen from his garage. (Is it me or does it sound like Fat Boy just wants a weekend away to do some camping and, listen to some 80's tunes and maybe spend some time burying something?) My Uncle Dave went because he has a washer, a dryer and car up on blocks all sitting in his front yard and you better believe he has not intention of losing any of them! The gall!

I went for....you guessed it....blog material.

And boy howdy did mama get some.
Let's take a look, shall we?






Here is my Granny. This picture was taken right after I asked a question. The officer in the uniform answered my question. But then my Granny turned around and said to me, "Don't ask stuff, you just moved here and nobody even knows you." She then smiled so I could take her picture. She is a complex woman.





Here is a picture of the group. There are about 12 other people to the right who didn't fit into the shot. And on that note, I would just like to say that I am not sure how my Granny can narrow any of these burglaries down to one man called Fat Boy. There were about seven men in that room who fit the bill. I'm just sayin'.






Here is the snacks my Granny said she would provide. Look closely. It is a half full bottle of Dr. Pepper, a bag of sugar and some coffee cups. There was no coffee. There are, however, some napkins in a coffee filter, were you to want to envision yourself spilling hot coffee on you or dropping some bean dip on your shirt. Though it would have been only a dream I assure you.





Wanna know what this is? Its a pot of venison chili. No one was offered any. Some man from down the road brought it and continued to stir it throughout the meeting. We don't know why. He didn't say why. And then when the meeting was over he got up and took his venison chili with him. Rude! He will not be washing that down with any of my Granny's flat Dr. Pepper or sugar, I'll tell you that much.





This was in case things got fancy, I suppose. They didn't. And yes, that is a coffee pot. And yes, it is unplugged. And yes that is a candelabra. And yes that is two week old Valentine candy. Okay, so maybe things did get a little fancy.

All in all it was a good meeting. I got some blog material out of it - my Uncle Dave was voted in Neighborhood Watch president due to MY insisting that we choose a leader (and who better to do it than a man who can balance a wife, a job and car on blocks?) - and the man who lives in the brick house with the cow mailbox is eating some really hot venison chili.

Of course there was one thing that bothered me.

What made us think that the burglar wasn't among us? And what better way to scope out the "neighborhood" than to come to the watch meeting and find out that Dale Jr. is headed to Mississippi for three weeks come mid-March but he'll be leaving a key to his place in the flower pot by the mailbox, Pat and Brenda's dog died and they now have nothing watching over their property and Buck's back door won't close shut all the way.

Welcome to the 75904.
Leave us your name, address, time of day you work and a list of your valuables.
We will be sure and let your neighbors know...unless they're fat.
Then they're on their own.