Friday, August 14, 2009

Do You Have Any Cheetos?

Okay - so originally, I was going to write a true story about a little girl and her Cheetos. Then, time got away from me and the next thing I new, I realized it was Josh's birthday...and my kids surprised me once again with their kindess towards each other. So I am still going with the original title, but like all good teasers, you will have to wait until the end of the blog to hear the story! Yeah, I know - I hate it when TV does that to me too, but I have to admit - it is kind of nice to be on the other side - what power...ha!

I know the blog date shows I posted this on the 14th, when actually it is the 17th. I started it on the 14th....just never finished. Anyway, today is the 17...Josh's 8th birthday (it also would have been my grandmother's 80th brthday...happy birthday Nanny!) I can't believe my guy is 8! Like every parent, I ask "where does the time go??" He is such a sweetheart...maybe a tad ADD, but still so sweet. He feels deeply and reacts very strongly - that is a two-edged sword! Zachary was being so nice to him today. He not only bought him a digital camera for his birthday, but put $20 in his birthday card! Hmmmm - my birthday is next - let's see if I get $20 (just kidding!)

So anyway...our quick trip to Orange Beach was fun - way too short, but still fun. It was neat to see the girls play on the beach for the first time. They loved it! It still amazes me how much sand can fit into such a tiny bathing suit! Lots of swimming, lots of food (LAMBERT'S!!!), lots of memories. The girls had their share of melt-downs, but that wasdue to being tired (I told Charles I never saw Ava's head turn 360's, but I'm pretty it did a few times) . Sarah tried to pick up a jellyfish, Josh had Zachary bury him in the sand, both boys collected seashells, and little Ava just dug and dug in the sand. Good times...good times....

Okay - so here is the anticipated story about a little girl and her Cheetos. Little Ava wanted a snack on the bach, and I (being the great, "fun" mom I am) gave her a whole cannister of Cheetos. She proceeded to plop down really close to the water and start munching away. Well, I (being the "cautious" mom that I am) thought she was a bit too close and pulled her back a little. In the process, some Cheetos spilled on the sand. Hence photo #1.

Well, it wasn't to long before Mr. Seagull caught a whiff of these munchies and decided (along with a buddy) to check Ava and her snack out.

Ava wasn't to thrilled with the prospect of company...especially when more and more "friends" started to appear...

After a few "Mommy, Daddy, help me!" cries, we rescued her, and once she was out of the picture, the rest of the flock came to see what scraps they could get! Bear in mind that all this happened in a matter of a couple of minutes or less. Amazing...and soooo funny!

So after some thought, I realized that there is a moral to this story here....Ava had something that others (even if they were birds!)) wanted - really bad. Once the news got out that there was something good to be had there, others wanted to have a taste too. See where I am going with this? Do you have something special that others want a part of? If you do, others will be drawn to you. Once they have a taste, they will tell others and want even more. Just a you have any Cheetos? :-)

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Life Goes On.....Really It Does

Amazing how one phone call or one event can bring yhour life to a screeching halt - yet life goes on. My grandmother passed away almost 2 weeks ago and while her passing was very much anticipated (she had pancreatic cancer), actually hearing that she was finally gone still brought life to a standstill. I remember watching the van from the funeral home taking her body away from Memphis Jewish Home and I was still in disbelief. Pulling out of the parking lot one last time was so surreal - I felt like a tornado was swirling all around me and I was oblivious to everything else. (Ironically, the tornadoes hit Memphis the night of her viewing!) Those first few days afterwards were almost like an out-of-body experience. Emotions were all over the place like a pinball machine -- joy, sorrow (lots of that!), anxiety, love, patience, you name it. I thought I would be so relieved when she finally passed away because I was ready for her to go on home to heaven - to be pain-free, to see Papaw again, to see other brothers & sisters who went before her, and to see the multitude of friends waiting for her as well. I guess I didn't think about how I would really feel when all this would really come to pass. Yes - I am soooo happy for her, but I am even more sad for my own loss as well. She was basically my only grandmother - and I loved her dearly. She spoiled me rotten (as every grandparent should do!), made me insanely jealous of her cooking (never used a recipe!), and loved my kids more than anyone would have thought possible. I still tear up when Ava asks where "Gweat-Gweat" (Great-Great) is. I drive by the entrance to the Jewish home many times during the week, which serves as a constant reminder. I liked going to see her at night - when the day had calmed down. The last time I sat with her I just held her hand and "scratched" her arm - as she did to me and all the grandkids and great-grandkids countless times. She could wake up enough to say hi/bye and that she loved me, and to answer"no" when I asked her if she was in any pain.

My kids really miss her - especially Zachary and Josh. They were very close to her. I'm glad that they have special memories of her to hold on to. That was a hard week for them - for all of us - but we learned that life goes on.

The following Sunday, Josh was baptized. Yea Josh! He's asked Jesus into his heart oh, I don't know, 6 or 7 times by now? The kid is definately going to heaven!

I came back to work Tuesday....we leave for Orange Beach late starts next Friday.

Life goes on...really it does...

In the midst of the "tornado", God is still good. There is a great peace. This peace assures me that I will see her again one day...that she is finally whole again and is no longer suffering. I can't help but wonder how people who have no hope handle situations like this. There must be such an overwhelming sense of loss and hopelessness. I'm glad that doesn't apply to me. I can't explain why God does what He does sometimes. It makes me question, but it doesn't make me love Him any less.

The storm has passed and we are putting our lives back together.

Because life goes on...really it does.