Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Being a tourist in our (new) hometown

The past two weeks have been a whirlwind of family visits! We got to play tour guides, first to my parents and then Marie, and show them our favorite spots and the famous tourist ones too.

Saturday October 6

First up was a swamp tour on a pontoon boat. The first one we went on, 3 years ago, was the Cajun Critters Swamp Tour and we liked the guide so much that we always use him when we go. We placed guesses as to how many alligators we'd see. Greyson won with his guess of 10 - we saw 9. This time of year they are slowing down as they are getting ready to hibernate. We also saw a TON of birds!

After we finished the tour we headed to Parkway for po'boys. Parkway has served po'boys since they were invented in the 1920's to feed the striking street car conductors.

Then it was on to City Park where we rode the minature train around to get a look at the park.

We then headed to Old New Orleans Rum Distillery for a tour that we had bought for a good deal on LivingSocial. We learned lots of interesting facts about rum distilling and New Orleans info. My kids were the only kids on the tour. They seem to get quite the education on adult topics!

Sunday October 7

We started out the morning by attending services at St Luke's UMC. Then we hopped on a street car to take us to the French Quarter for lunch at El Gato Negro. Yum!

Then we meandered over to the Old US Mint. We bought a Louisiana State Museum membership, but this museum is now free! The first floor has displays and information from when the building was used as a US Mint. The second floor has a display on Preservation Hall and New Orleans Music.

We then headed to Jackson Square since that is the most recognizable French Quarter spot. We thought we'd get beignets, but the line for Cafe Du Monde was down the street! So we headed to Johnny's for ice cream.

We caught the trolley home and cooked out for dinner after the kiddies swam at Grandma & Grandpa's hotel.

Monday October 8

We went to Oak Alley Plantation for the first time. And it was definitely worth it! The alley of 300 year old Live Oaks was amazing and everyone enjoyed touring the Big House. We ate lunch at the restaurant and all the adults enjoyed mint julips and burbon twists.

We ate dinner that night down the street from our house at Lakeview Brew which has great sandwiches, as well as salads & soup.

Tuesday October 9

Grant had been sick the night before, so the kiddies and my mom and I mostly hung around the house. We did take a little time to go over to City Park and play on the playground and tour the Sculpture Garden. Alex took my dad on a tour of projects he works on.

Dinner was my favorite restaurant Dick & Jenny's. The first time Alex and I went there was for our 10th anniversary. I almost always get the appitizer sampler for dinner and have the ice cream cookie sandwich for dessert! I have never been disappointed with their eclectic food.

My parents left the next morning but it wasn't long until my sister Marie arrived!

Saturday October 13

We ate dinner at The Velvet Cactus which serves Mexican food. Yummy dinner and yummy drinks! We then headed over to City Park and saw a wedding taking place as well as other special events set up.

Sunday October 14

Again we took the trolley downtown and this time we headed to the Audubon Aquarium and then on to the Insectarium. I've always enjoyed the Insectarium because it's so different! There are not many places you can go to see and learn about bugs. Plus Marie and I sampled cookies and candy with bugs in them! We then walked to the other end of the French Quarter and ate at Louisiana Pizza Kitchen.

Monday October 15

Monday was my first day of work and the kiddies went back to school, so we didn't get to spend as much time together. But as soon as I got home Marie and I went out for frozen yogurt - YUM! After picking up the kiddies from school we ate at Theo's Pizza. Yep, with kids you end up eating pizza a lot! We like Theo's because of the yummy toppings they have!

Tuesday October 16

Again with the work and school ;) That day Marie and I got Creole Creamery Ice Cream when I got home.
It was also Alex & my anniversary so Marie volunteered to watch the kids. We went to Ralph's on the Park across from - you guessed it - City Park, for an adult dinner. Marie & the kiddies had Magazine Pizza.

Wednesday October 17

I don't work on Wednesdays, so Marie and I were off to do some of what she calls "lower-48 shopping." We stocked up on Halloween goodies at World Market, and holiday scents at Bath and Body Works and had lunch at our favorite chain - Jimmy John's! The kiddies had a half day of school, so after we picked them up we headed to the Audubon Zoo to check out our favorite animals. For dinner we went to DatDog, a restaurant we were introduced to by our friend Katy. Lots of different kinds of 'hotdogs' with lots of yummy topings! Marie and I topped the evening off with a visit to The Columns Hotel for drinks.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Priceless Treasures

I neglected to say my absolutely favorite thing about New Orleans in my last post. And that is: That's where my home is, where my family lives together.

Kid Date Night

When I was a single parent, I really missed having individual time with my kids. I started thinking how I really wanted to be able to have a time with each of them alone. And now that there are two parents in the house, we are able to do that.

We've designated Tuesday nights, because that is what works for us. And surprisingly we have been able to do this at very low cost (mostly free).

The first week Greyson and I took a picnic dinner to City Park and ate on an island. Then I took him to KMart to spend a $5 giftcard he had that he was dying to use. He also took $1.50 that he had gotten from the Toothfairy. He spent $5.74 at the register and then bought a $.25 gumball at the machine and a $.50 necklace from the same machine. Yep, he walked out with a penny in his pocket! And for me it was so much better than trying to go with 2 kids into the toy aisles! That night Alex took Grant swimming at a rooftop pool at a hotel. Yep, both my kids thought dad was the best date.
The second week Grant and I made cheese quesadillas (his favorite) and then got out a cookie baking set he had gotten for his birthday (last year). While the sugar cookie dough was chilling we took a trip to Whole Foods for toppings (total spent $10). I admit, because of time and homework constraints, I did most of the work. That night Greyson and Alex went to a friends house for a cooking lesson.

This week was our 3rd Kid Date Night and Greyson and I rode our bikes to City Park to again have a picnic on "our" island. I was a little worried about the sun setting, so we rode right back after dinner and then played a couple rounds of Mancala. Alex took Grant geo caching and Grant came home with pockets filled with feathers and an army figure's leg. Yep, priceless treasures!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Things I like about New Orleans

Wow, I am overwhelmed by the responses on my last post. I received so much support, both publicly and privately. I really appreciate it - I have the best friends!

I think I do need to let you know the things I do like about New Orleans!
#1 City Park
I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE City Park! City Park is about a mile from our house. I jog there just about every morning. It's filled with ponds & lagoons and trees - the perfect combination for those from the Great Lakes State! The Sculpture Garden is free and the Museum of Art is free every Wednesday. There is an amusement park (it's no Cedar Point, more like a fairground) and we bought a season pass that paid for itself by the second visit. Sometimes I take the kids just to run around to get energy out. City Park is by far my most favorite place in New Orleans.
#2 The Streetcars
The first time we came to visit, I found riding the streetcars with the kids was one of the cheapest forms of entertainment! Even though it's transportation, you feel like it's a piece of history and culture. The Canal Streetcar is just down the street from us and when taken from one end to the other you end up at the Aquarium which is also at the tail end of the French Quarter.
#3 The People
I know, I complain all the time how rude people are here. And most times they are, but there are also friendly people. The introvert in me was seriously freaked out the first time I went for a jog and EVERONE I passed said, "Hi!" And it's not just jogging, everyone you pass everywhere has a greeting. 

So while my heart belongs to another city, I'll keep looking for things I can love about this one!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Life as I know it

So much to write about!
After the last post we experienced our first "hurrication." Sunday night we received notice that school was cancelled for Monday and Tuesday so families could make emergency plans. Knowing that if the hurricane actually hit New Orleans school was also going to be cancelled at least for Wednesday and Thursday, I decided to take a little vacation to my parent's house in Ohio. And it was a nice vacation, going to the beach and winery!

And then we came back. Honestly, I've been having a difficult time since the kids went back to school. And I feel guilty. I know so many people have been rooting for us to be together as a family again, and that's what I wanted too, but now that I have what I wanted, I'm not happy.

I feel like the last 3 years of my life have left me so scarred. My husband lost his job, left us to work out of town, I became a single parent, I lost the job I loved, it took me forever to find a new one that did not have the benefits of the previous one. And now here I am, in a new city 1,000 miles away from everything that was familiar, with no job and a drained bank account. And this is what I wanted.

And being a month into a job search has again left me demoralized. I keep having flashbacks of the last time I applied for a job every day for 6 months to have 5 interviews that lead to one job offer for 1/3 less pay and 3/4 less vacation time and 1/2 the sick time and no work at home option like I previously had. Don't get me wrong, I was extremely grateful to have that job especially when I wasn't eligible for unemployment (religious organizations are exempt from participating) and I met the most wonderful people that I have pretty much known in my adult life, but it wasn't what I was used to.

Here I am again, 13 resumes in the last month and one call back saying they had a hiring freeze, but no other word. Ugh, job searches when you actually need a job are the worst. And to make it worse, recently when my husband and I were meeting people he was asked what he did for a job, but no one asked me. My husband's response when I commented on it to him, "But you don't work anyway." First of all, how does anyone know that without asking? Second, how does that make the rest of my life less valuable?

So I find myself questioning my value. Because getting a Master's degree when you're 22 doesn't mean the same thing when your 37 and either over-qualified or under-qualified for everything available. Being "just a mom" isn't very fun after you drop fighting, complaining kids off at school and then go home to deal with the socks other people left on the floor.

And through it all I feel guilty. If this was anyone else I would tell them to look on the positive side. We are all together again, everyone is healthy, and while there isn't anything left after the bills are paid, we ARE paying the bills. And even though we will have a credit card balance for the first time in the last 8 years, we have NO other debt. But telling yourself to be positive doesn't always end in you being positive.

I want to be alright with the way things are but I also want to change things, without being dissatisfied until the change happens.

In the last couple of years I've come to realize that life is like a river. It's always flowing and changing. Sometimes the weather is calm and sunny and you can just float along enjoying the scenery. Sometimes it's rough and fast moving and it's all you can do to hang on. Sometimes you get hung up in obstacles, like downed trees in your path. Sometimes you have to backtrack and go back to the fork and take a different direction. Sometimes you meet up with a larger body of water. But whatever the path, you never stand still. Today is one of the days when I'm banking on change. I don't want to stay in this part of the river. But I also know I can't enjoy the ride without being grateful to all the experiences that have brought me to this point and will take me to a further point. I'm looking forward to the days when I can just float along, but until then I am thankful for the journey.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Just another manic Monday

I was all prepared to write a post about how after my yucky Tuesday they kids were perfectly pleasant on Wednesday morning, pretty good at the art museum we went to after school and did their homework with a minimum of complaints! And the rest of the week followed suit....until Monday.

I received a phone call Monday afternoon from Grant's PE teacher. He had found a piece of glass on the playground and stabbed a girl. Oh My Goodness. Of course they took this "very seriously" and he received what they call a "community violation" which also entails a call home. The girl was okay and her injuries sounded more like a scratch which drew a little blood.

When I first picked Grant up he denied that he had done anything and claimed everyone had lied. "Even though you wrote on the community violation form what you did?" "They forced me to write that!" "Well, if you didn't do this, then they are falsely accusing you and we need to go back in and clear this up." "Fine, I did it."

Later at home he claimed that after he found the glass in a crack in the sidewalk the girl told him to poke her. I told him that I didn't believe that because people don't ask to be hurt BUT even if it was true you can't listen to other people when they tell you to do something wrong, you have to make your own decisions.

A little while later I received a call from Grant's teacher and she said, "I was shocked when they told me Grant had done that. He is not malicious at all." I told her I don't think he really comprehended what would happen if he poked someone with glass and he had told me the girl told him to do it, but I told him I didn't believe him. She said, "Knowing this girl, it's not entirely unlikely that she did tell him to do it." I felt better after talking to her...but still! Oh what I would give for a week without school drama!

I also sent Greyson's teacher an e-mail because Greyson had told me he was reading Amelia Bedelia books for reading time. This kid had been one of the top readers in his class and I was wondering why now he was reading below grade level. The teacher explained that although Greyson's fluency was at grade level, his comprehension - especially when he had to write about what he read - was not. I know this about my kid, that he has trouble putting ideas into writing. But in Michigan his comprehension was still scored at grade level. I know, I went back and looked at his report card and and MEAP results. But apparently at this school, he's not up to level.

I do have to say that overall I think my kids are getting a higher quality education. More is expected of them and they are spending 6 more hours a week at school verses what they spent in Michigan. And the teachers are so dedicated. They are working longer hours for less pay AND I am getting contacted after the school day is done.

Someday I'd like to write about more than what my kids are doing at school. But for now, that is where all the drama is in our lives!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

When your kids give you lemons in the morning....

Most of you have already seen this morning's Facebook post:
Why yes, it is time for a mocktail and a bubble bath. By 8:45 I had already jogged for 45 minutes, got the kids up & dressed, made breakfast & lunches, swore at my oldest on the drive to school after telling him politely at least 3 times to change his negative attitude and then told my 6 year old to sell his sob story somewhere else because I wasn't buying it, at school drop off.
It's one of those days when you wonder, "How did this get to be my life???"

Okay to back up and give you an update on the whole school situation: the rest of the week continued along the same vein as the first two days. After getting a call from Grant's teacher on Tuesday, I received a call from Greyson's on Friday. "I gather Greyson isn't used to the structure that we have at this school. I've had to remind him several times in class to sit up and other times to follow the speaker with his eyes." Yes, both my kid's teachers are reporting that they were never made to sit up in class before. Another sigh. I did let him know that Greyson was frustrated that math was a review right now and that he was looking forward to moving ahead. Also, Greyson was frustrated by the homework which involved writing paragraphs about the school values. "I've noticed that all the new students are struggling with the homework, while returning students seem to know what to expect." Uh huh.
On Thursday Grant started bawling, not just crying but bawling, when I dropped him off at school. That day the teacher was at the door and said, "Don't worry, he's always fine withing 10 minutes." Then on Friday when it happened again he told me, "I always get left behind in the cafeteria when it is time to go to our room." I was pretty sure "always" was an exaggeration. So on Monday when it looked like there would be eminent tears and the same declaration came forth I told him I would e-mail his teacher and found out that, yes he did get grouped with another class once but now tables have been assigned for a smoother transition. So, this morning when the tears started, I'd pretty much had it with the over-dramatics and told him to "You got left behind once and now you have an assigned table and know what to do. Sell your sob story somewhere else, because I'm not buying it." Oh dear, now I feel like a horrible person. Add on to that that I swore at Greyson after telling him he was not allowed to say, "I hate school," "The only good thing about school is getting out of it," "The thing I'm looking forward to most is the day being done."
You know what? I tried hard to be patient with both my kids, but that's enough. You are not always going to like school. You are not always going to like your job. But until an alternative comes along, you do NOT have the right to make those in your path miserable. Buck up and find something positive about your day. Then I decided to take my own advice and make a mocktail, draw a bath and pull out a good book....
Here's hoping you get the time to do something for yourself today!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Second day of school

Wow, I am grateful for all the support I received on "The First Day of School!" I was feeling guilty for complaining about "public" school.
I do need to clarify a few things. I don't have any problems with the school. Personally, all the contacts I've had with the school have been positive. I just wish my kids could see beyond the uniforms and discipline policy.
Yesterday, the 2nd day of school, when I picked my kids up I asked them to tell me 2 things they liked about school. Greyson answered, "Lunch and recess." Which is a typical response for him, but he was greatly disappointed on the first day when they spent the first part of recess reciting the school values before they could play. So YEA! for more playtime on day 2! Grant answered PAT and recess.
Then just before dinner I got a call from Grant's teacher. "Grant seems really tense. Is there anything making him nervous beyond being at a new school?" I answered that Grant always took a while to warm up to new situations and that everything was new about this school. "Grant is a good kid, but I can tell our rules are different than what he is used to. He had to stay inside for the beginning of recess because he had trouble following rules at carpet time." This was nothing new, both my boys have A LOT of energy that does not mesh well with sitting in school. Sigh.
So overall, the 2nd day went better and today is school tee shirt day and I'm hoping for more good reports from my kids!

To leave this on a funnier note, on the first day I asked Grant if he told anyone he was from Michigan. "Yeah, the kid sitting next to me talked to me in Spanish. I said, 'I don't speak Spanish, I speak what Michigan speaks.'" Well, that's my little Michigander!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

The First Day of School

Yesterday was a big day for us. The one-month anniversary of the boys and I moving to New Orleans AND the first day of school!
I guess I should start by saying the schools in New Orleans are notorious.  Most of the public schools have been taken over by charter schools. And the charter schools have a lottery process, some with testing, that happens in the spring. So moving here in July, we were short on choices. When I first started calling around, no one answered since school was out for the summer. When I finally did start getting a hold of schools we got the "no vacancies" message. Finally I found a school and it is not too far away. But of course, if it was a school that still had openings it wasn't a "first choice" with other parents.
After I went to the parent orientation night I could tell that this was an inter-city school with a big focus on discipline and "preparing all of our students to attend a college-preparatory high school, graduate from a selective college, and contribute positively to their community." It was definitely going to be a change.
And the first visible change was that we needed to go uniform shopping! Uniforms were a totally new concept for my kids! And the strictness of them got me, "all black shoes, including the soles."
Finally the first day of school arrived.
After counting down the days until they started - I was actually nervous for them!
And then, I was heartbroken when they both got in the car after school and said, "We like our old school better!" I learned that Grant had eaten NOTHING at lunch, despite packing a lunch of his favorites. Greyson told me they just talked about discipline and values all day, which he thought was unfair.
Grant did tell me he liked that they have PAT time which was picking your own activity, but Greyson said the only thing good about school was coming home.
Greyson also said to me, "I'm the only white kid in my class, everyone else is brown. In the other 4th grade there is a white girl, but she was home schooled and has no idea what school is." All I said was, "Oh, really?" I guess I want Greyson to make up his own mind about what that all means.
So this morning as I woke up the boys I was greeted with cries of, "We don't want to go back there!" Well, you don't really have a choice. I want to help my kids see the opportunities and good experiences, but I'm not sure myself what those are right now.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Emergency Chocolate

I'm not gonna lie, the first two weeks here were really hard. I arrived to a dirty house, spent my first afternoon cleaning, my husband left the first night we were here for volleyball - so dinner & bedtime was on my own, our possessions arrived late, I felt totally disoriented and I went from being a working mom to a stay-at-home mom with a house full of boxes and two kids to occupy. BUT, I think we've turned a corner. I'm becoming amused by life again and ready to laugh.
The following post generated a lot of buzz when it was posted to Facebook:

Today as we walked into the grocery store I said to Greyson, "Don't let me forget the emergency chocolate." (Aka, the-kids-are-stressing-me-out chocolate). And Greyson loudly answers, "What about the emergency vodka, mom?"

A recent shopping trip

I need to add, I was mortified...but what do you do with kids - finish the grocery shopping! I'll admit, I forgot about it almost as soon as it happened and only remembered later that night.
I'll also admit, that just 2 years ago, I wouldn't have been mortified, I'd have been horrified if I heard that story from someone else. How does a 9 year old know about vodka?
I don't usually drink in front of my kids, however I often do put them in bed and pour a drink! But my kids do hear me and my friends talk about drinks and right now the Detroit-made Valentine Vodka has been a topic of conversation. I received a bottle as a going away gift and bought another in a new flavor (Elderflower). And as previously mentioned, wineries are family trips around here!
So, if you want to judge me on this, go ahead. I would have been right there with you a couple years ago. But what my kids do know about alcohol is that it is for adults and right now they have much more interest in the driving age than the drinking age.
I used to not like the John Lennon song, Whatever Gets You Through The Night, because I didn't agree with all the lyrics. But, when I became a single parent, and then an unemployed single parent, I understood that sometimes there are situations that seem to hard to face alone in the dark of night. And if it's emergency chocolate or an emergency vodka that gets you through....than it's "salright."
And if I can be a listening ear - just let me know!

Friday, July 20, 2012

New Orleans

Where to start? We've been in New Orleans for 2 weeks now.
We left Southgate on June 29th and picked my sister Marie up from the airport (from Anchorage) and headed to Frankenmuth, MI to meet up with my sister Shelly's family for a late celebration for Grant's 6th birthday at the waterpark. It was a great time. From there we all headed to Ohio and spent time with my parents. Including a trip to Put In Bay. July 4th we spent at our traditional family reunion. On the 5th the kids and I left with Marie and drove her to West Virginia where we had lunch with my brother Stanley and Marie continued with him to Virginia Beach.
The boys and I got to New Orleans about lunch-time on July 6th. We had already been told our moving van would arrive the next day, but we got used to our new place. We've gone from living in a house with a basement and a garage to the top floor of a duplex - 3 bedrooms, two bathrooms and a small laundry area on the first floor. Pretty much no storage space except for the single closets in each bedroom. And it costs more than we previously paid for our mortgage AND Alex's apartment together.
The movers did arrive on Saturday and we started to turn our place into home.
By Monday afternoon I was ready to go crazy...and then I found a life-line. The library summer reading program was on Tuesday. We showed up early and all got library cards. The program was from the zoo on wetlands, with lots of live animals!
We've settled into a weekday routine for now, the kids are supposed to: have breakfast, clean up, get dressed, make beds, do a chore and a worksheet and then they may watch a tv show, they play a little and then it's time for lunch followed by piano lessons, quiet reading time, another tv show, play time and then dinner. Not to say that there isn't a lot of whining and fighting going on in between! Tuesdays are library time and we usually go back on Thursdays for new books. And Wednesday we go to lunch with Alex.
We signed the kids up for school. The public schools here are notoriously bad and most of the charter schools have lotteries in the spring, so we got into a "front-line" school which is one step up from a public school, but are hoping for a charter school closer to home although that may have to happen next year. But school starts August 6th and I don't think I've ever been happier to see the start of school!


Okay, so this story really should go in May, but I've just had time to catch up...

The day drove into the driveway and the "SOLD" sign was up Grant burst into tears saying, "I don't want to move to New Orleans - they have black widow spider there!"
I knew this wasn't the full story, so I probed him over dinner, "Why don't you want to move to New Orleans?"
"Number 1," what 5 year old has a list of reasons??? "They have black widow spider."
"Those spiders don't come into houses," I lied.
"Number 2," sniff, sniff, sniff, "I don't want to leave my friends." Okay, I'll give him that one.
"Number 3...wait mom, do they have Chuck E Cheese there?"
"Yes, we've even been to Chuck E Cheese in New Orleans."
"But do they have Stevie B's?"
"Well, you may be out of luck on that one."

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

True Story of the Lost Wallet

Okay, so it's been a month since we've been back from Spring Break, but I just now have time to recount the story of the lost wallet.
If you follow me on Facebook, you know that half-way on our drive to New Orleans I discovered I had lost my wallet. We stopped for lunch at Subway at a gas station and when I went to pay - oh, no! - I had no wallet in my purse! When I thought back, I realized at the last gas station (2 hours and one state ago) I had put my wallet in my pocket. I did have a checkbook, so I was able to pay for our Subway and then I turned back around to go back to the last gas station and see if I could find my wallet. In the meantime, Alex called the gas station and they said no one had turned it in, but I had to see for myself. I remember being in the women's room when the boys started screaming in the men's room (the acoustics in bathrooms is apparently great for listening to screams!) so I hurried myself out of there. And I'm sure that is when my wallet fell out of the shallow pockets of my hoodie.
After making the 2 hour drive back to the first gas station, they had not found my wallet and I couldn't even go through the garbage because it had already been taken out. I'm pretty sure that whoever found the black leather Kate Spade wallet in the women's room kept it for the wallet itself...and the $50 inside. Luckily that was all the cash I had inside and when I started calling to cancel the credit cards, more than 3 hours after I lost them, no purchases had been attempted.
We turned back around and started driving to New Orleans again, and when I had about 90 miles of gas left the kiddies had to go to the bathroom, so we stopped at a gas station and I asked, "Do you take checks for gas?" Yes. "Without an ID?" No. I sent the kids into the bathroom and when I came out the attendant asked me, "Are those your babies?" "Yes" "I couldn't live with myself if I didn't take your check." Oh, the kindness of strangers! I'm sure everyone says they have have money in their account to back up their check, but I really did and am thankful for that attendant who took a chance on me! The next two stops I was not so lucky, both places would not take a check without ID. The kiddies had $3 that they brought so I used that and slowed my speed for maximum MPG. I arrived in New Orleans with 20 miles left on my gas tank.
While losing my wallet was annoying, and I had a few tense moments wondering how far we'd make it, I knew that we would make it to NOLA, even if Alex had to meet us for a fill-up. This was actually a good way to start off vacation, because it put everything in perspective. A lost wallet is no comparison to an accident or breakdown - and the vacation was all uphill from there! I am also very appreciative of the kindness of strangers. Greyson was extremely upset at first - but again there were good lessons to be learned. We were going to make it to New Orleans, just later than we had originally thought. And this is why there is no such thing as "finders - keepers," it really hurts when someone is not honest enough to return your belongings.
I hope when you read this, you can pass on kindness to strangers and help restore the lost, because sometimes it's the little things to us that sometimes mean big things to others.

Ps, I also forgot to say thank you to everyone who offered their support on Facebook and sent me texts! I had friends offer to get me money and after the fact found out others were trying to figure out how to do that too!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Enjoy every sandwich

Apparently I get philosophical on Fridays!

When I turned on the radio this morning Werewolves of London was on. That song always reminds me of an interview between David Letterman and Warren Zevon. Letterman asked Zevon what he understood now, being diagnosed with terminal lung cancer, and Zevon answered, "Just how much you are supposed to enjoy every sandwich."
If those aren't words of wisdom, I don't know what is. So today, I plan to enjoy every sandwich. And beyond that, every interaction I have with a living person.
Happy Friday!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Some funnies from my Facebook status

1/29/12 "If we had another kid in our family and it was a boy - we'd call him Awesome." Grant

Overheard between an 8 year old and 9 year old.
"Do you want a Mustang GT when you grow up?"
"Why not? They're epic!"

Last night when I was helping Greyson study for spelling he said, "You're just like the mom in the movie Penelope and you never think I'm good enough how I am. " I said, "Nope, I'm like Bill Cosby when Theo says he is doing his best in school, 'why can't you love me like I am' and his dad says 'That's a bunch of baloney!'"

And the drama at my house continues:
"Grant! Why did you bite your brother!"
"I didn't bite him!"
"Then why are there bite marks on his arm?"
"I was *trying* to drink his blood."

Greyson: A motorcycle and a car are a lot different - like Chanakuh and Christmas.

"People have been saying all day that I look hot. Well that's because I *am* hot." Grant age 5 on wearing sweat pants and sweat shirt to school.

Thankful for my fridge

I have decided that every time I think I have nothing to be thankful for, I will be thankful for my refrigerator. No lie, my fridge is the symbol of all that is good in my life. There is always food in it. My kids, and I, have never known true hunger. We've never gone more than a few hours in our lives without food. Because it's "on," I've paid my bills. Even though my husband and I have been unexpectedly unemployed, I've never had a late bill. I have a place to put my fridge. My house is more than adequate for the needs of my family. I have a calendar on my fridge where I mark down things I'm looking forward too. My kids artwork and school assigments hang on my fridge, reminding me that they are happy, healthy, smart and safe. I have photos of many of you & your kids on my fridge, letting me know there are people that I truly care about and that care about me. Thank you God for my refrigerator.