Friday, February 26, 2010

Impressive, Isn't It?

The cure for anything is salt water--sweat, tears or the sea.  Isak Dinesen

I saw this quote a couple of days ago at Life Liberty Pursuit.  It is very sweet but I laughed out loud...literally.
My mother-in-law must be a faithful Isak Dinesen follower because she truly believes salt water will cure anything!

Its kind of a "joke" in the family (all in love) that if someone has an ailment; anything from a runny nose to an in-grown toenail the remedy is "gargle with hot, salty water." My husband has been known to snort the stuff through his nose and it does immediately clear congestion.  Don't think it does much for the toenails, except causing you to forget about it momentarily while you're choking on hot, salty water.

Before you go thinking my 83 year old mother-in-law is a little lady sitting hunched over in a rocker telling everyone to "garlge with hot, salty water", I've included a picture of her, taken a few months ago, riding an electric horse. More on her later!

My husband has been sick with fever and cough for two weeks. He garlged and snorted hot, salty water for three days, to little avail, and I finally talked him into seeing the doctor yesterday (why are they so stubborn?)
He said the doctor told him he had an "impressive case of bronchitis."

Mt. Rushmore.... impressive
Quadruple axle....impressive
Valeri Bertenelli's fifty lb. weight loss....okay...impressive
Popularity of Lady Gaga.....impressive

BRONCHITIS? Impressive? I'm missing something here.
Don't misunderstand me. My husband is extremely impressive! He's 6'3", strong, very, very handsome (in fact I often quote 'Raising Helen' and refer to him as my "Sexy Man of God" but don't tell the church folks!)

I imagine he might even have an impressive set of lungs being that he's never smoked and has been a singer all of his life (I'm guessing that would help your lungs...) but an impressive case of bronchitis? I guess if all the doctor had seen yesterday was mediocre runny noses, blase' blood pressure levels and average back pain, then she may have been relieved to finally see something quite impressive, like my hubby's bronchitis.

An inhaler was prescribed.  The medication inside the inhaler was listed on the side of the box and sounded oddly familiar. They charged us $47.00 for salty water......that's IMPRESSIVE!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

My New Community

I reached a new "blogmark" today! (see 'Things to Come') Someone commented on FB that they were disappointed I didn't have a new post. How exciting! The reasons I didn't have a new post were:
1.  I was leaving my last post over a day to see if it got anymore hits (it got a couple more)
2.  I was adding a new page titled Recipes (see above)
3.  I've been blog-hopping!

Here's a little more information on #3.  When I started blogging I assumed I would be writing most of the time and I do write a LOT. Trust me I could write here all day and night, but I am trying to "pace myself" as my sister lovingly advised. (Thanks, Sis!)

But then I found out if you want people besides your friends, family and FB stalkers to read what you've taken the time to write, then you need to read what they've written. See, during the BB period of my life (Before Blogging) I took five to ten minutes each day to check my email, stalk on Facebook, milk my virtual cows, collect virtual eggs, and then I was done.

"What is the big deal?" I asked myself. "What are people doing ALL DAY on their computers?"

Then I got hooked on Blogging. Which, by the way happened through Redbook, a magazine I normally don't read, I do NOT endorse and I will explain at a later time. And now I write a while and read a LOT. And this is my New Community! I have learned stuff, laughed a lot, and have had a great time...and its only been less than two weeks.

Yes, I've neglected housework, laundry, grocery shopping, excercise, hygiene (how DO you spell that awful word?!) and cooking. In fact I call it the BLOG DIET! I've lost 4.25 lbs because I haven't eaten in twelve days.   But "Oh the places I've seen!" (that would be Dr. Suess, I believe. If there's one thing l've learned in twelve days is give credit where credit is due).

I am dying to introduce you to some of my new "friends"! There are many and most of them you can see on my blog list but I must tell you about a couple, in particular. Oh, another thing! I've apparently inspired a few others to start blogging. I warned them it was addictive but they dove in and found it very theraputic (another stupid word that's hard to spell!) I'll check with them before I share their addresses. Don't know if they are ready for public exposure yet.

The first blog you gotta try, is Mennonite Girls Can Cook  and I've got to warn you it is obscene what these girls are doing with DOUGH!  They've apparently installed a gadget called  "SmellaBlog" because the aroma of freshly baked Cinnamon Rolls is overpowering. It could be my imagination (I would like to invent a gadget called SmellaBlog or at least I get the rights! You read it here first!) but I have found no other blog (including Pioneer Woman who has done obscene things with meat and potatoes) that makes me want to lick my monitor. So if you don't mind the taste of dust, venture over to this blog and remember you have been warned. One more thing: it doesn't hurt that I love all things Amish (thanks to Beverly Lewis) and I know saying Mennonite and Amish are the same is like saying  people who live in Florida are from the south...its just not right...but their simple way of life makes me plum envious!

Next zip on over to God's Favorite Shoes for awesome fashion tips. This chick doesn't work for a magazine she just likes fun clothes! In fact her profile reads "does that mean we should wear mom jeans and Crocs?" Her writing is fun and her style is too!

And finally for some laughs hop over to Lulaville . I want to be her RLF (Real Life Friend)!

These are not by any means the only blogs I enjoyed this week. There are many, many more and most of them can be easily arrived at by clicking on the list on the left or on my profile. Happy Reading!Do something CRAZY today! And share the love!


Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Trailers and Toilet Paper

Paper or plastic? Coffee or tea? Single-wide or Double-wide? It’s a question I often ask at events where I’m speaking. At one particular event no one raised their hands, and they looked at me as if I had suddenly dropped in from another planet. (T.T.: Trailer Terrestrial) I didn’t think they would understand that you can’t slam doors in double-wides. They are too thin for much pressure and if you find a way to slam it, all the pictures fall off the walls. They weren’t ready for the game we love to play: Toughing out the Tornado.

But I was so wrong. I learned you don’t have to experience something first hand to comprehend it, especially if its humor, and there’s a little bit of trailer trash in all of us. These joy-filled, fun-loving ladies were from my a suburb of Atlanta where double-wides are a myth...the subject of a good horror story.

Indeed, I grew up in a brick home, built on a firm foundation that sat on a corner lot. It was a great place for football games, T.V. tag, red light-green light, and dozens of other childhood games.

We had two massive oak trees that stood about thirty yards apart and just begged to be wrapped in toilet paper every summer. In those days you didn’t toilet paper people you didn’t like, but those whom you did. At least that’s what I was told. Apparently we were adored!

One evening my daddy heard a commotion in the front yard and we knew what was going on. A giant Charmin web covered our front porch and yard. It was actually a work of art. A body emerged from behind one of the trees, looking like a trapped victim in the web.

“Mr. Goins, can we please finish? We’re not quite done and this is the best ever! We’ll clean it up in the morning.”

“All right. Just be sure to get it cleaned up. It does look great!”

My dad  congratulated them on their vandalism! 

My sister and I got to clean it up the next morning... If I remember correctly (sometimes I do, sometimes I don't...) Mama had us put all the collected paper into a garbage bag and put it in the bathroom to be used later.
I call that TM: Trailer Mentality.  Also known as RECYCLING.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

His First Love

My heart was aching. My eyes blinked back tears, but I wanted to sob. I didn't dare.

"Pull yourself together," I told myself.

"You don't even know these people."

Jody and I had been asked by the funeral home to sing at a service. We do this occasionally and although I'm often touched at these life memorials of strangers, I've never felt my heart being ripped as it was today.

This woman was obviously a Believer who had lived a long, full, Christ-centered life. The speaker emphasized her faithfulness and the fact that she was now healed from her illness and was with her Savior in heaven was a comfort to her friends and family.

Except for this young man.

He didn't want Granny or MeeMaw or Pookie to be dancing with Jesus. He wanted her to be sitting beside him, smelling her familiar Charlie cologne.

He wanted to be curled up in her lap, stroking her white curls while they watched NASCAR just like they did every weekend.

His wails echoed through the chapel, almost drowning out the speaker, who was using a state-of-the-art microphone to be heard. It would be eerily quiet for a moment, just a moment, as the preacher tried to describe what a generous woman Sister Mary had been to so many, and then a heart-wrenching sob would ensue.

No doubt I was not the only one who was moved. The tears of the boy's mother would start fresh with every sob, until the child finally laid his head in her lap and surrendered to his grief. His body shook with pain as he revisited their favorite fishing spot, remembering the time she slipped and almost fell in the water as he laughed with glee. Possibly he remembered those mouth-watering cookies she would make; the ones he begged his mother to bake, but somehow she just couldn't get it right.

In contrast, the boy's older brother, about eight, sat silently between him and his dad. His red-rimmed eyes studied a pesky thread escaping his dress pants. As he played nervously with the thread he seemed torn between grief and embarassment, just wanting it all to be over. "When do we eat?" possibly running through his aching heart.

The postlude music began playing. The cold pink coffin, draped with red roses and pink carnations was wheeled down the aisle as the wailing took on a deeper resonance from a place that shouldn't be touched at such an innocent age.

"DON'T TAKE HER AWAY! We're not through! I'm not ready!"

Was that my words or the boy's? It didn't matter of course. I would not follow to hear the sobs at the graveside. I don't know if my heart could take the pain of hearing that child as he watched them lower her into the warm ground. The arms that had held and hugged, the lap that had been a place of refuge, the cheeks that he had splattered with kisses and the face that he loved so much...that it hurt.

They had only known one another for six or seven years. But in those short years he had loved so deeply, and lost so severly. I prayed for the family. I prayed for the friends. I prayed for the boy. I prayed for the next woman he would love. Because rarely does one fully recover from the loss of their first love.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Rare Winter Storm

The weekend of Valentine's we were hit by a rare winter storm. The last time Middle Georgia was hit by this much snow, I believe, was the blizzard of '93. We've had some light dustings since then but this was spectacular and a treat from a Marvelous Creator!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

No Big Deal

 It shouldn't have been a big deal. I made it a big deal.

I went to the store three days earlier and thought "I'll get a frozen lasagna. We haven't had one in months and its one of my son's favorites."

Another thought, during the same trip, to the same store, standing in the same aisle was "I'll get a frozen pie crust and vanilla ice cream to make a blueberry pie. I've never made one but Preacha Man bought frozen blueberries the other day, out of the blue (haha) and a pie sounds good."

So it wasn't a big deal. It was only three days after the trip to the store.

"You know the Murphy's will be here at noon."

What I heard him say was, "This minister and his family are coming for a spectacular lunch to glean from our example and wisdom, and whether or not they succeed in ministry or as a family is completely dependent on you and your luncheon."

Now obviously that is not what he said or anywhere near what he meant but this crazy beast-woman was released as I turned to my husband and said "WHAT?!"

He had no idea what nerve he struck or what button he pushed but he made the only logical choice: retreat.

"Nevermind, dear. Calm down, down I say. What was I thinking? I'll take care of everything. Here, gnaw on this meat bone."

"When did you plan this soiree' (I use French words when I'm really out of control) and when were you planning to tell me, 'au voir'?"

He picked up a small wooden chair with one hand and a whip with the other as he carefully came towards me.

"This was your idea. I invited them two weeks ago and reminded you yesterday. Don't you remember?"

He spoke those last three words very slowly as if I suddenly didn't remember the English language and saying the words slowly would help to interpret what he meant.

My attention was diverted from him as I scanned my memory until I recalled that significant moment. But while my attention was diverted he made his escape and grabbed the can of lemon flavored spray and proceeded to dust furniture. Alas he wasn't quick enough and I prepared to pounce upon my innocent victim when he commanded "Stop!"

I paused, but we could both hear the low, gutteral growl coming from a place I know not.

"I'll take care of it. Go get lunch ready and I'll straighten the house."

I pounced. Not literally but figuratively. I lunged past him into the next nearest alcove. After a quiet moment or two I heard the door squeak as someone cautiously pushed it open. I turned my head, looked back at him with beady eyes.

"Wh..what" he asked.

"What does it look I'm doing?" I growled.

"It looks like you're cleaning the bathtub."

"I AM cleaning the bathtub!"

"I hate to disturb you," he was treading gingerly, "but they're only coming for lunch. I don't think they're going to want to bathe."

"I KNOW!" I think drool flew from the corners of my mouth as I jerked my head back and scrubbed the porcelain back to its original powdered form.

"I'm calling them and telling them not to come."

That was my voice. Hubby's head popped back into the bathroom with unabashed bravery.

"No, you're not. We are having lunch for them."

Then in a rare moment of defiance I picked up my phone and dialed the number. I hung up before it was answered.

Here's where I would like to say I prayed and repented and pulled myself together and we had a glorious time and the family's ministry is stronger than ever, thanks to my turn-around, but that's not how I remember it.

I remember praying "Help me, God...NOW!" and repentance was more like: "I'll deal with this later."

I thanked God for frozen lasagna, prepacked salad, and frozen piecrusts.

While the lasagna and the pie were baking I stepped outside to sweep the carport and all I could hear was his thoughtful words, "I don't they're going to bathe." And I giggled. Then I guffawed! (if you've never guffawed you need to try it...very cleansing!)I was outside, alone, laughing so hard it echoed, until tears were streaming down my cheeks and it was all I could do to compose myself.

My husband and I were reconciled after I got a phone call from our guest.

"I saw where you had called. Is everything okay."

"Oh sure. Just making sure y'all are still coming."

"We'll be there in ten."

It was the best blueberry pie EVER!

Friday, February 19, 2010

The Curse

I am the victim of a family curse.

For example, I have a beautiful, talented daughter whose calling in life is to sing so loud she can be heard in Canada (we live in Georgia). She’s almost accomplished that goal. She believes that she has this drive because she loves to sing. I know it is a result of The Curse.

When I was nine years old I would stand center stage, on what Mama called a foyer’, with my sold out audience crowded into the auditorium. I couldn’t see the faces of those in the back because of the blinding spotlights.

“More! More!” the audience would scream.

I would helplessly give into their desires by nodding to the orchestra to cue them to begin playing my theme number. Unfortunately my sister put the needle of the record player on the wrong song.

“Not that one!” I cried.

The audience started to get a little restless as they stood to their feet and demanded an encore performance.

The famous intro began: four steady beats, “dum, dum, dum, dum.”

Then with eyes closed I lifted my microphone close to my lips. “So many nights, I sit by my window, waiting for someone…”

The audience was captivated. They LOVED me!

Then what they had been waiting for: “YOU LIGHT UP MY LIFE! YOU GIVE ME…”

“Turn it down!” Someone screamed from the audience. I continued. “TO CARRY ON…”

“Turn it DOWN!”

Suddenly the audience vanished. The living room was bare. The microphone became a hairbrush and the bandleader was sucking her thumb.

“Oh well,” I thought. “There’s always tomorrow night.”

I didn’t know it then but I do now. Years ago my mother was whispering under her breath, “May she have a daughter that sings loud enough to make her eardrums bleed.” And I do.

One of my three sons doesn’t seem to know how to walk through the house, at least not on two feet. He must gallop on all fours and then flip with all his might with a loud THUMP ( a THUMP in a double-wide is never a good thing.) Once again I am reminded of The Curse.

I started taking gymnastic classes when I was about eight. I wasn’t half bad and certainly no one tried as hard or practiced as often. During the summer Olympics, Nadia Comanici became my hero.

Our home was blessed to have a beautiful arena where thousands could gather around and watch the floor exercises. I won so many gold medals that the judges offered to not even make me compete; just take the medal and go, but I refused.

“Competition is in my blood.”

They seemed to understand I nodded to the orchestra leader who began playing “Nadia’s Theme” only it had recently been changed to “Leanne’s Theme” after Nadia was forced to return to Romania with the silver medal.

I leapt! I flipped! I kicked the table!

“That’s not enough!” The audience wanted more. I did cartwheels, The chandelier danced overhead with excitement.

“I said, ‘That’s ENOUGH!”

I landed in a quick sitting position. I somehow believed that if she caught me sitting in the floor she might think it had been thundering.

“May she have a sturdy roof over her head and a child who makes her wonder if it’s sturdy enough.” And I do.

I am sure that my mother didn’t mean to cause me any great harm in the long run. When my youngest was four years old he would often creep into my room in the dead of night and wake me to tell me he went to the bathroom and just wanted to say “goodnight.” This would always occur when I was in a comatose sleep and had no earthly idea who this kid was, much less why he was shaking me. I did the same thing for about six years to my Mom.

“Mom, I am SO sorry. Please release me from the curse.”

“Why honey, I have no idea what you’re talking about.”

I must give my mother some credit. Along with “The Curse” came many blessings. She passed on a strong faith in God, a belief in discipline . I’m reminded of God’s promise to the children of Israel when He said, “I the Lord your God am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.” (Ex. 20: 5-6 NIV) How thankful I am for a godly heritage that is being passed down and is already evident in the next generation.

Silver and Gold

I've reached two blogging landmarks this morning and I'm so (may I use the word again?) "giddy"!

I appreciate so much the friends and family who have so kindly read my ramblings. I appreciate even more those who left comments: words of encouragement, either here or on Facebook. You tell yourself you're doing...whatever...for yourself, not other people, but its just not true. We all like to be told "great job", "attagirl", even "not bad".

Some people MUST have words of affirmation on a consistent basis. These people are somtimes mistakenly called "high maintenance" when what they really need is just a couple of hours of therapy. Pray for them.

But this morning I had one of those "I've arrived" moments when two fellow (or sisterly) bloggers (whom I've never met)left comments! Yay! Thanks, Park Mom and Teresa! The blogging world seems to be one more exciting community with lots of smaller communities, depending on what your interests are. The drawback is that once I start reading other people's stories I lose track of time and forget to get back to my own blog...and life.

When I was a Brownie in Girl Scouts my mother, who was our leader, taught us a standard Girl Scout song. The words were "Make new friends. Keep the old. One is silver and the other's gold." We sang it at every troop meeting and I believe Mama sang it at the beginning of every school year (I do mean every.) It immediately came to mind when I realized I was making new friends and it will probably be stuck in my head the rest of the day.

That was the warm fuzzy I got this morning: I'm creating a place where new friendships are made and old ones are nurtured.

A former community I was involved in just never quite gave me that feeling. Clicking a button over someone's pretend crop to make it sparkle and then make the picture of tomatoes or daffodils larger...left me feeling...empty. I never got that "we're doing something together" emotion that comes from sharing real stories from real lives. Ironically some of my favorite blogs are from writers who do actually live on real farms!

The second blogging landmark (shall I call it blogmark?) was giving myself a nickname! I hope you noticed! As I was blog-hopping (apparently that's what its called) I noticed many authors didn't use their real names, but cute pen names. I understand this is supposedly for security purposes because there are bad people out there, although I'm not sure how it protects me, my identity or my family, but I'll play.

So I spent a long ten minutes...trying to come up with a cute name that related to my blog and the only thing I kept coming back to was Double Wide Mom. Of course my immediate thought was "Oh my gosh! They'll think I'm....HUGE".

But I couldn't come up with anything more attention-getting and because my title does have a "double" meaning (pun intended) AND when people meet me maybe they'll say "You don't look anything like I pictured!" (because what people say does tend to matter. See Paragraphs 2 & 3.)

Go say something nice to someone. Share a random act of kindness. Call someone on the telephone (remember the telephone?) for no reason except to say "hi". Go share the love. Jesus did.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Things to Come

My husband is on day two of being sick. Nothing too serious: fever, cough, achy muscles. Gee, now that I list them, I guess he is pretty sick.

I had the worst of mine on Monday. And the thing is, like so many, we don't get sick. We just don't.

We do not take vitamins, we exercise but not regularly, we eat vegetables occasionally and love red meat! So how do we (all six of us!) stay out of the doctor's office? I have my theory (tithing) and I'll expound upon it but not today.

What I was getting at is this: Its been two days since I've discovered this wonderful, blissful world of blogging. I hope you realize that I don't generally write about what we're having for meals (I may) or what the kids are doing in school (I definitely will) but I write about things that I want to read. Maybe someone else will want to as well, maybe they won't.

That being said I haven't had a chance to organize my thoughts because while hubby has been sick, he wants to catch up on LOST episodes, which is not a bad thing. However we do not yet own a lap top nor do we have regular TV (LOVE Netflix and Hulu!)so we've had to take turns on the computer.

While he's napping, I'm going to attempt to organize some thoughts, mostly for my benefit but also so any interested readers can have some idea what to check back for.

1. I plan to open a page with pictures. Not only of my family but nature and whatnot (love whatnots)

2. I plan to somehow post some of my scripts I've written. "A Rose in December", "Heirlooms", "Trace the Grace" to name a few.

3. I plan to start a page and eventually a separate blog for Survivors of Suicide and suicide prevention. This is an issue that I'm passionate about as I have been a near victim and I am a survivor. For those of you who are interested I am attending a seminar next week to become a trained facilitator for an SOS group.

4. I plan to write stories about my humble town of Milledgeville; the same
place I once said "I will NOT live there" and now I can think of very few places I would rather live. The stories need to be told.

5. I plan to write many more stories of my precious mother, my beloved grandmother and my quietly witty daddy.

6. Finally (for now) I'm going to explore 2010: our first themed year. I never had a theme year but it has been exciting so far. 2010 is the year we discovered "This Ain't Working!" and the year of "Community."

Whew! I've got a lot to do and I hope you're looking forward to it as much as I am. Hubby just got up from his nap and is obviously ready to watch another episode so I'll go. Take care.

A Walk in the Park

My husband, Jody, likes to walk. I like to sit. Knowing it might strengthen our marriage and that he would continue to ask me, I agreed to walk two half-mile laps around the park. A cool fall breeze was blowing and crisp leaves crunched beneath our feet.

I was a little surprised when he asked if I was ready to walk again the following day. I didn’t want to overdo it.

“Why not?” I answered. “Let’s do three laps.”

The cool air was replaced with sticky humidity. The wind was nonexistent, making the sweat across my forehead hang like drops from a rusty faucet.
The first lap wasn’t so bad. We distracted ourselves from the weather by picking up trash along the path. We soon noticed a Chihuahua leading a woman toward us. She was apparently “Miss Walker – of-the –Year”, complete with portable CD player and headphones (iPod’s had not quite made it to South Georgia yet).

We nodded and smiled as we passed each other. We soon conquered the incline on the east side of the trail.

I grew hot and sticky as we began our second lap. I became frustrated that I didn’t dress more appropriately. I started to chafe from wearing jeans and the sleeves on my sweater wouldn’t push up past my elbows.

“It’ll be over soon,” I said to myself, “and I’m starting to feel a bit thinner already.”

I noticed that Jody was still picking up trash he missed the first time. I thought to myself, “What’s a little litter on the path of life? So what if we overlook a gum wrapper or two, as long as we reach the goal?”
Miss Super-Walker (who apparently wasn’t aware the track runs clock-wise) whizzed past us six times. I worried that if she kept up her pace we’d find her passed out on the sidewalk our next time around.

I started hoping Jody would forget that I suggested a third lap.

“One more time around,” he grinned.

He didn’t forget. I tried plan B: ignorance.

“We’ve already been around three times.”

(It was lame but I was desperate.)

“Nope,” he smiled. “You can do it. Just one more time around.”

I pictured him in a striped sweater, shaking pom-poms.
“Gooooooooooooo, Leanne!”

I wanted to punch him out.

“Okay”, I thought. “One more time. It’s not really that bad.”

Little Miss Perky with her jazzy CD player was coming towards us again. What’s this, her twelfth time past us? I started to hate her. Jody tried to make me feel better by chatting, but his chatting irritated me like nails scratching a blackboard. Couldn’t he see I was dying? Why wasn’t he looking for a phone to call 911?

Half –way around. I didn’t remember getting that far.

There she was. How did she do it? I prayed her dog would bite my leg so I wouldn’t be able to finish the lap. No good. He found a squirrel. Stupid dog. The crunch of the leaves irritated me. They were stupid. Beads of sweat dripped in my eye. It was stupid. As if my day wasn’t bad enough, that stupid hill loomed before us. How did it suddenly get so steep?

Jody bent over and picked up cigarette butts as he skipped along the stupid, stupid trail. What was he so happy about? Maybe he knew his beloved was about to keel over and he could collect the insurance. No, wait. There is no insurance. Maybe there’s another woman. That had to be it. It was his plan all along. How wicked!

He must have had another woman on the side ever since we moved here. Somehow he knew I would suggest three laps today. That’s why he was so excited. He deliberately made me jog, no run, around this ridiculous park. Maybe it was that CD girl with the dog. Every time we passed her he probably gave her a wink and said, “It won’t be long now.” I’ll bet he met her one of those mornings I wouldn’t walk with him. It’s my fault. I haven’t been the wife he needed.

I glanced at my husband in his ragged shorts, stained tee shirt and dirty baseball cap. Nah! It wasn’t another woman.

“Honey, you did great! I’m so proud of you!”

“What? We’re through?!”

“Sure. How do you feel?”

I watched as Miss Perky whizzed by us for the thirty-third time. I looked up at my handsome husband of sixteen years and saw unconditional loyalty and love pouring from those blue eyes and realized that I was the luckiest girl in the world.

“Well,” said my husband, “How do you feel?”


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

That's Debatable

I looked around the class and thought, “They are so lucky to have me in their group. We will have a great presentation because I speak so well in front of an audience.”

I was a theatre major taking the required course, Speech 101. Our assignment was to research a controversial topic and be prepared to debate the argument. Apparently I was absent the day our group decided to argue the topic of euthanasia.

I smiled and agreed to do my part of the research. I headed toward the library wondering, “What could possibly be wrong with the youth in Asia?” I didn’t dare ask anyone. I was afraid to admit I couldn’t remember the last time I picked up a newspaper except to see what movies were playing.

I pictured those poor, hungry teenagers in China having to steal food from market stands just to survive the Communist regime. Why wouldn’t the Chinese government take care of their young people? Don’t they know that these youth were the Future of their country? I was beginning to get a bit irate at the injustice of it all. I could not quite imagine why this was a controversial topic. Who in their right mind would defend such a selfish governmental stand? No problem. I was determined to arm myself with facts and research that would have every eye in that classroom weeping. I imagined giving such an emotional presentation that the next flight to China (I do hope China is in Asia) would be filled with students sold out to saving the Youth in Asia!

I spent at least a week (okay, two hours) looking up “youth”, “Asia”, “China” ( I do hope China is in Asia ), “Asian Youth”, “Young People”, “Communist Young People”…you get the idea.

I found out some very interesting facts about Asian young people but nothing I thought would be pertinent to a debate. I was anxious for the next organizational meeting to see what kind of information other group members had gathered.

“How do you spell ‘euthanasia’”, someone asked. Apparently I was not the only one having trouble with the assignment. I was quite dumb-founded to hear it started with an ‘e’, but at least I was now on the right track.

And for those of you who are still trying to figure out what I'm talking about this would be a good time to use a dictionary (that's with a 'ti' not 'sh').

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

A Giddy Beginning

"Giddy"...that's a funny word. Not one you hear very often but it describes my present mood perfectly! Waking early on Christmas morning, the day you're going to get your first driver's license, the morning of your wedding, the first confirmed real contraction that announces "the baby is on the way!" all manufacture an emotion slightly greater than what I am experiencing now...but only slightly.

It all kinda started about fifteen years ago,, it had to be more like twelve years ago...definitely about twelve years ago when my children were 9,7,5 and unplanned (as yet). We were living in a town in south Georgia in a Double-Wide mobile home ("trailers" are in parks and we were in a "mobile home community"). My husband was a minister of education, music, something, I'm not really sure any more, but he was at church. I remember vividly sitting on the couch, looking out the window when these words came to mind: "My Home and My Hips Are Both Double-Wide". Just like that. Being a minister's wife I knew that if random words popped into my head they should be words from the Bible. I retrieved my handy-dandy concordance (a must for ministers and their wives) and could not find "double-wide" anywhere. There were references for "double-edged" as in Heb 4:12 and Revelation where they both mention sharp as a double-edged sword. There was also a reference to "double-minded" man mentioned in Psalms and James and God did not think highly of either of them. But there was no mention of double-wide.

Then just as quickly as the whole phrase came to mind I started wondering what I was supposed to do with it. Was it the name of a country song I should write (I hope not)? Then The Voice (well it sounded like my voice) said "Title of a book". Cool. I should write a book. When? How? Who am I kidding?

For the past twelve years I've jotted stuff down, been to a writer's conference where I received wonderful feedback on my "stuff". I've announced the name of my book (now my new hundreds of ladies at women's conferences where I've spoken,who all want to pre-order copies. But alas...I am lazy and scared of rejection. Pretty poor excuses.

My main negative thought (and there have been many) is how in the world do I find a publisher interested in publishing my gibberish?
Yet whenever anyone has read it they've expressed nothing but praise...oh except for my former pastor's wife who said "but you're not funny." I've forgiven her. And a magazine publisher who sent me a letter saying they were publishing my story, then sent another the next week saying they reconsidered because they believed my humor was too "hostile" . For the record, it was a homeschooling magazine who thought Veggie Tales was "hostile humor". I'll run that story this week.

Bottom line: I have lots of writings already, I have tons of ideas for stories and I don't have to lose sleep on whether or not the publisher gets my humor or not (yet!). So...I hope you'll stay tuned, tell your friends (even your homeschooling ones).

That little voice of doubt (who am I kidding? Its louder than thunder!) is saying, "No one is going to read anything you write. Ever since the success of 'Julie and Julia' everyone and their Grandmother is writing blogs, hoping to get a movie deal".
But guess what? I don't care! I really don't! I will take what I have written and all that I want to write (okay not all of it...I'll save some of it for my other blog where I do NOT mention that I'm a minister's wife) and post it for my family and I, and if my family doesn't want to read it (because they lived it) I won't make them.