Monday, September 24, 2012


Have you ever noticed how bad things seem to snowball? When one bad thing happens, it seems like they just keep happening... and they get bigger and bigger! I guess that's the reason behind the origin of the saying, "When it rains it pours." But do you ever think about how good things seem to snowball, too? We seem to focus too often on life's struggles that we forget to get excited about the joys. Say you wake up late in the morning, and on your way out the door you spill your coffee all over you. What's going to happen with the rest of your day? Chances are you will have a flat tire on the way to work, you'll realize at lunch you have no money on you, your boss will decide to take you off a project you've been so excited about being a part of, then you'll get home to fix dinner and notice the food you were going to use has gone bad. It's one thing after another. Or if somebody says something bad to you that puts you in a down mood, bad things just keep happening. What about when someone starts your day off with something good, though?

In Bible study today we were talking about how people can get you down, and the problems just seem to build. It reminded me of several times in my life when the opposite has happened. Sometimes all it takes is that one person doing something nice to turn my whole day and whole attitude around. When I lived in Miami, Florida, and I was a server at Chili's I can remember this one day I had that was horrible. My manager was on my case non-stop. I got flustered and ended up messing up orders. Then one order came along and I completely forgot to enter it into the computer. By the time I realized my mistake the guys at that table were very frustrated. I went to them anyways and explained how it was all my fault. I told them I completely forgot to enter it, and for that I was so sorry. I expected them to be horrible about it. Instead, though, they thanked me for my honesty. They told me they seldom run into honest people in south Florida who will actually take the blame when they do something wrong. They were so appreciative that I did not try to push it off on someone else that when they left I noticed I received the biggest tip I had ever gotten. Talk about changing my attitude! That made my night!

The funny thing is that this unintentionally was paid forward about a year later. I was living in Pensacola, Florida. My brother was working on a movie in New Orleans, and he came over to see me on his day off. We decided to go eat at Red Lobster. Our server was horrible! She was rude, mean, and just an all around terrible, terrible server. When we got ready to leave we were going to split the bill. Instead I told my brother I would get the tip if he got the bill. I left a tip the same size as the bill. He asked me why I did what I did after she was so horrible to us. I told him that people don't just act that way. There had to be a reason for her attitude, and my guess was that something was going really bad in her life. I wanted to do what I could to help make it a little better.

I was thinking about that today. I would venture to bet that the actions of those guys to me when I was having such a bad day are what subconsciously convinced me to do what I did for that girl at Red Lobster. It's amazing how we never know what the actions of a stranger will lead to. With that in mind, we never know what incredible things our actions to a stranger could lead to.

Try doing something good for somebody you don't know. Better yet, try doing something nice to someone who is mean to you. You may not see the positive results, but they just might happen. Regardless of their reaction, though, you can feel good knowing that you took the higher road.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Ice Cream for Dinner

I cook for my boys all the time. If I don't cook, they either don't eat or they'll eat something really bad... like ice cream for dinner. So I feel like it is my obligation to cook every night. In fact, I usually cook at least two meals a day, sometimes three. This weekend, though, I still wasn't feeling completely up to par, yet I still cooked dinner on Friday and Saturday. Today, Sunday, is suppose to be a day of rest... right? I figured I better abide by that. :-) So we had leftovers for lunch, and I let them do for themselves for dinner. The dinner of choice tonight was... drumroll, please... Spaghetti O's! You have to understand me to know how hard this is for me. I am the anti-processed foods person. To me they aren't foods... they are food-like substances. But I let it all go tonight and happily served it to them. Ok... so I did still fix it. But I didn't spend an hour or two cooking like I do most nights. I was so tired that I didn't even care. Whew! That's hard for an OCD girl! I feel like I made a huge accomplishment.

We worked with Connor tonight on his math. We have no idea how long this worksheet had been in his folder since we only see him every other weekend. But he struggled so bad on it that the teacher sent it home to be redone and have a parent's signature. He's so smart, but when he doesn't understand something he just gives up. When he's at our house we always make sure to review every class with him, see if there's anything he's not getting, and if there is then we work with him on it until he gets it. By the end of the study session tonight he was whizzing through those math problems. It's all about spending a few minutes with the kid every day. If he had that, he would make all A's. We would give anything to have him more often so his grades would come up and he would start enjoying school a little more. We will just continue to pray about the situation, though, and do the best we can do.

Sunday Night Football is on, and I have a running back (from my fantasy team) that's playing. I'm playing my brother this week, and it's looking like I'm gonna beat him. I have to hop off here and cheer on Frank Gore!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Spin City

My world is still spinning. I was hoping I'd wake up this morning and feel better, but the dizzy spells have continued through today, too. They have been off and on rather than continuous today, though, so it is an improvement. I have to admit, it makes you a little nervous when you are suppose to be taking care of someone else and your body isn't cooperating. Luckily my husband had a good day today. I don't know what I would have done if he was having a rough day. It's possible to push through many illnesses, but it's pretty difficult to push through dizzy spells.

We did have a wonderful surprise at the front door earlier. Our 2 year old nephew who lives down the street rode his tricycle up to our house (with his daddy walking right beside him, of course). I have to share the picture of him wearing his helmet on his tricycle.

Is he not the cutest thing ever??? :-)

This morning while I was resting on the couch baby Brantley decided to do a little kung fu fighting in my belly. My brother and sister-in-law in California aren't around to be able to feel him kick, so I had to take a video to send to them. If you watch at about 7-8 seconds in you will see him kick on the right side of my belly, then he does a double kick about 15 seconds later, and then another one happens at about 35-40 seconds into the video. I don't think that sight could ever get old!

(My belly doesn't have spots all over it. It only has a couple of freckles. I don't know why it looks like that in the video.)

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

When the shoe is on the other foot...

My husband and I have been experiencing a role reversal today. We were both suppose to work picture day at my stepson's school. Tim found out a few days ago that his mom was having a procedure done today and needed him to drive her to the hospital. So we found someone to take his place at the school, but I still planned to be there all day. At 7:35 AM today I was spraying my hair, the last thing I had to do before walking out the door to go to the school. Tim was already in Little Rock with his mom. All of a sudden I had a hot flash, started sweating, but also got extremely dizzy, light-headed, and felt like I would pass out at the same time. I sat in the bathroom floor hoping it would pass. It eased enough to move, so I made my way to the kitchen to get some food thinking my blood sugar might be low. As I was getting something to eat I realized I was going to be sick, so I made my way to the bathroom. Finally I went back to the kitchen, ate, sat for a bit, and still felt horrible. I contacted my sister who is a CRNA (but might as well be a doctor because she is so knowledgable) and asked her what I should do. She suggested I hydrate well, prop my feet, and do not expect to leave the house anytime soon. I knew this meant I would have to tell my husband because he was expecting me to be at the school. I figured he would check our security cameras from his phone as we often do when we're away, and he would see me sitting here. Then he would be upset that I didn't tell him. So I texted him to let him know that I was just having a minor pregnancy spell, I was ok, and I would let him know when I made it to the school. He immediately called. I explained to him what was going on, and he got so upset that he was away and could not be here for me. He felt helpless, and he was so worried. All he wanted to do was take care of me and make me feel better. He sent me a text a bit later and said, "We are both seeing how it is to be on the other side, aren't we?" Usually he's the one at home having a rough day physically, and I'm the one stuck somewhere doing something and can't seem to get home to him quickly enough. He also mentioned how long he was going to have to wait in the waiting room for his mom to finish. He said he didn't remember it taking that long when he had that procedure. I told him it always seems longer when you're the one in the waiting room. He said, "You're always having to wait in the waiting room for me and you never complain. I never realized what a big deal that is. You're the best wife ever! Thank you!"

I don't think about the things I do for him the majority of the time. Yes, my life is FAR different than I ever imagined it would be. I expected to live the happy little life where my husband and I would both get up and go to work, then come home in the evenings, I'd cook dinner, we'd eat and then enjoy the rest of the night together before going to bed. I figured we'd go on adventures together, hike, jog, rock climb, and do all kinds of other cool things together. Instead, I wake up at 5am to make sure he takes his meds. When he wakes up a little later in a lot of pain, I do what I can to ease it. I fix his breakfast and take it to him (although he ALWAYS returns the favor when he wakes up having a low-pain day). I spend my day caring for him. Seldom does he leave the house without me because of his dizzy spells. If he needs to go somewhere I typically drop what I'm doing and go with him so he won't take a chance of driving alone. Yet, when you truly love someone the way I love him you look at it as a privelege. I feel priveleged that I get to be that person who cares for him. I feel priveleged that I can be the one to make his bad days a little better. I feel priveleged that I'm the one he leans on, turns to, confides in, and relies on. So, while I'm glad that he can experience my side for a day, I don't think he'll ever realize how little of a "hassle" it is for me and how much of a "privelege" it is.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012


Never am I at a loss for words when it comes to writing. But today I have been unable to think of what to say to honor 9/11. No words can do justice to the incredible impact this event had on our country. As most did, I knew at that instant that our lives as Americans would forever be changed. Last year when I had the opportunity to visit the 9/11 memorial with the Wounded Warrior Project, I could not hold back the tears or the chills. I couldn’t look at that space without replaying that day in my mind. As Americans we were no longer divided by political party. We were one. I have never been more proud to be an American than I was that day. The spirit and love by Americans was apparent at Ground Zero, the Pentagon, and Pennsylvania by police, fire, EMS, military, and civilians, at prayer vigils across the country, and at the long lines of people waiting to donate blood. To those who endured personal loss at Ground Zero, the Pentagon, and Pennsylvania that day, my heart is with you. To those who have endured personal loss since then as a result of the events that day, my heart is with you. And to all police, fire, rescue, EMS, and military who selflessly put your lives out there for us every single day, my heart is with you. We will NEVER forget!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Crazy Air Force

No, I'm not talking about the United States Air Force. I'm talking about the force planes experience in the air. Saturday my husband was having one of the best days he has had in a LONG time. It worked out perfectly because it was a beautiful day with a lot going on. We went to the air show at the Little Rock Air Force Base. It is awesome to watch the maneuvers those pilots can make with their aircraft. As they would zoom past us at 1000 mph, then quickly change directions and go straight up toward the sky, I could only imagine the amount of force they were experiencing in the cockpit. As the announcers explained the details of specific moves, I was blown away. Many of these moves had pilots experiencing 3 G's or 6 G's. In other words, it was 3 times the force of gravity or 6 times the force of gravity. Then it dawned on me... it was estimated that when my husband had his helicopter crash he hit the ground with a force of 15 G's! 15!!! That's five times greater than what pilots experience during many of these high speed, incredibly forceful moves! That's far greater than what any Blue Angels' pilot experiences. That's a HUGE amount of force! I know I've read that it is nearly impossible to survive anything greater than 12 G's. And my husband experience 15 on that day. It's only more proof to me that God had more plans for him. The fact that he can walk and experience many things in life is a miracle. He should not have survived that day, but for some reason he did. I vow to continue to spend my life helping him reach his full potential and live the life God gave him. The bonus life. :-)