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Sunday, July 24, 2016

Good Intentions


Always trying to do good, we decided to apologize to our two kids before nightly prayers. We wanted to show them that adults make mistakes and we weren't beyond apologizing. If you have read any of my previous posts, you know where this is heading.

Things started off well, as they should have, considering we had good intentions.

"Before we pray tonight, we just want to apologize to both of you for not always being the best parents. We can't lecture the two of you about things if we aren't doing the right things. That's not right," Daddy began.

We went on to apologize for specific things we'd done, the main one being about having disagreements in front of them when they were a little younger.

Feeling good about our good intentions, we prepared to pray.

I noticed the kids looking at each other. They had this look of "one accord". Any other time this would be great, especially since we talk to them about having a great bond and not having the common said "sibling rivalry".

So the first one started: the youngest one.

"Well we have some things we want to talk about that you all didn't mention."

His sister sat up with great posture and a little too much confidence and poise.

Before we knew it the two of them were tag-teaming as if they were headlining a WWE fight! They were on a roll.

It got to a point where Daddy and I were about to skip prayer all together. It suddenly got really hot.

"You know what. We are just gonna go back downstairs and pray for you. We just aren't in a good place right now!" we said, fanning.

Luckily we all simmered down and prayed. With limp hands.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Purple Rain

The world lost a talented and giving artist today. Decided to post because I remember posting the day Michael Jackson passed away years ago too. Two great artists I grew up on. While I appreciate the coverage I also had to turn it off because I could feel a spirit of heaviness just as I did sitting through all the coverage of MJ. Prince seemed so healthy (vegan and conscious of what he put in his body) so we are all in shock.

This coverage also brings a smile when I think about his music. I was young when Purple Rain came out- the movie and album. I was only 12, the summer the movie dropped. I had Purple Rain buttons. The thought of singing some of the lyrics to some of those songs makes me smile and shake my head. So there are amusing stories from these memories. Sneaking to listen to songs but getting busted. I remember a friend learning the steps to the dance in the video, When Doves Cry, and teaching me the moves in the foyer of a church during a wedding rehearsal. We live in NC... the Bible Belt. I can still feel that slap upside the head.

I also believed the world was going to end in 1999. Hello? Didn't Prince mention something in the song about a "...bomb and we could all die any day." The party was going to be over in 2000 so we would be out of time.

It's sad that such a talent who defied the norms and did what he wanted to do is gone. His music will certainly live on. He will be unmatched. Let's be grateful for his time and music. Music brings us together. He'd want that. We will miss the purple highness. Prayers for his family, friends and fans like me. Nothing Compares to You.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Ain't Nothing Wrong With Me


Resolutions? Well I don't do well with those. In the past I've made them only for them to dissipate by March. Then later I feel defeated for not completing them.

A week ago, I felt the need to change my eating...again. Even though the New Year was around the corner, I decided I could start early. You know, be an overachiever! And I was tired of feeling yucky and bloated after meals. Hanging out on Twitter reading great tips about eating better from MindBodyGreen also helped.

"That's it!" I proclaimed! "I'm eating better starting today!"

No verbal responses from my family. But a few looks and shakes of the head. Nonbelievers!


"Clean your room!" I told the youngest. Had to take it out on someone and he was the closest. He looked confused. I think his room was already clean.

Humming, I made my list of groceries and skipped out the door. No one asked to go with me.

I always have the hardest time with eliminating sugar/sweets! Was doing well until I read that it was okay to fall off. That, and I was near a new bakery I'd been wanting to try while out running errands. Personification is something because I did hear the chocolate calling my name. I got two just in case one fell out the bag and onto the floor of my vehicle on the way home. You know how that goes.

Of course I could not let the family see me eat it. What kind of example would I be setting for them? They wouldn't understand. Besides, they weren't supportive when I made my announcement. Daddy was watching a game and the kids were in their rooms. So I took my sin dessert to the guest room. They know that I go there sometimes to write.

Midway through the second dessert-I HAD TO- the youngest comes to the door. "Momma?" he said.

Not to be caught, I inhaled the rest of it and coughed while I stuffed the paper under the mattress of the guest bed.

Well, as fate would have it, for a few days after, I noticed that every time commercials about women's panties or Depends came on, the family would snicker and look over at me. I felt like the elephant dessert in the room. And the commercials came on quite a bit. As if they were calling and requesting the commercials.

"What's so funny?" I'd ask.

To my chagrin, one of them found a chocolate stain on the guest bed. But they didn't know it was a CHOCOLATE stain. I ran to get my proof- the discarded bakery bag still in between the mattresses.

"See! Ain't Nothing wrong with me!" I showed them the paper and fessed up!

At least THAT ain't what was wrong.


Sunday, December 27, 2015

A Little Christmas Etiquette


I love holidays! Especially Christmas! Enjoy giving gifts and putting a smile one someone's face. I get more joy out of giving than receiving.

There is one little thing that's always a little uneasy for me: food. Eating other folks' food.

I will admit it. I am one of those employees at the staff's Christmas party who wants to know, "Who fixed the broccoli casserole?"
Yep, I am smiling but inside I'm flashing back to see if I've witnessed the cook wash her hands in the employee bathroom. And fortunately churches have come a long way with communion. Growing up in the Baptist church, in the South, we had those teeny communion cups and broken up Saltines. Those communion cups were reused and who broke up the crackers? I know Jesus turned water into wine and multiplied the amount of bread but the people handling the communion did not resemble Jesus.

Well, I love my family but I am also fair. I am not gonna eat something just because it's family. No ma'am! I'm shaking my head as I type this just thinking about some family members.

Like one of my uncles. He's deceased now but whenever he'd cook, I could not eat. It was the cigarette! I can see him now. Left hand on the spatula. He's telling some exaggerated story and... had that Newport in the other hand! Quite talented with it. I swear it clung to his lip, while he was talking- hand free- and it never fell! I'd be tempted to hold an ash tray under the cigarette to catch the ashes but they would never fall.

I realize there were a lot of things that went on in kitchens, back then, that would have generated a C or D but I'm grown now. I've got options.


Being behind the scenes is not always good.

You canNOT stir a drink, that is for everyone to partake in, bring the spoon to your mouth to slurp and taste it...then put it back in to stir. I don't care how many times you have brushed your teeth, gums, swished mouthwash, or flossed. I ain't drinking it.

Then two huge No-No's with the turkey: if you are going to cut it and pull the meat off with your BARE hands, I'm gonna need to see some hand washing prior to. The person cutting cannot have sweat rolling of her face while standing over the turkey. Sweat is clear! You have to look really hard to see if it rolled off onto the meat or not. At almost 44, my vision is not that great anymore.

So needless to say I was thirsty and without turkey this Christmas and for good reason.

Monday, December 14, 2015

Brow Raising Experience


I have to replace my brow technician. Yes, the place is two stoplights and a railroad track away but it's time.

Now I have to take some responsibility for this situation.

About a month ago when I went in, I felt like she ripped too much hair off but I figured I'd just wait a little longer to go in next time. Give my brows time to thicken up.

I wasn't quite ready- well my brows weren't ready yet, but I needed to take my daughter in for a lip wax. After fussing at her, on the way there-

"You know in the winter time, the hair is easily visible! I shouldn't be the one to tell YOU that it's time for a wax! I fussed right up to the door-

"You didn't see it was time? What were you wa' Hey! How ya'll doing today?" I smiled as I went to the counter to sign in.

The owner startled me as she yawned and stretched among the magazines. WHERE THE CUSTOMERS SIT.

"What you get today?" asked the masked lady giving a manicure on the other side.

I politely informed her that I didn't need a service. "It's for her. She needs a lip wax."

After stretching again and sticking her feet in what I think were sandals, the owner sized me up and said, "No eyebrow wax today?"

"Nope. Last time you took a little too much off. I will be back in another week. But thanks!"
My daughter dropped her head. She seemed embarrassed for some reason. She didn't lose any hairs.

She said something in her first language and all the technicians employed there, looked at me.

Didn't appreciate not knowing what was said. But it was obvious it was about me. One lady getting her nails dried, smiled and giggled.

Since they were looking, I raised my brows.

After their two minute, secret conversation, one technician told my daughter to come on back for her wax.

"Who do you brow last time?" the owner asked. Well that would be tough to identify who it was for two good reasons: I didn't want to hurt anyone's feelings and I couldn't tell who was who with masks on!

I shrugged. The shrug was symbolic because my shoulders were saying, I don't know, but that is exactly how I looked the last time my brows were done- like my brows were saying I don't know! All the time!

Here's where I messed up. The owner came over and looked at my brows. She offered to do them. Were they that bad?

"I just clean up fo you. Not take much. You not need much off," she assured me.

As we walked back. It seemed like- through my eyes and problematic brows- the other technicians were giving me the "You Gone Learn Today" look.

"Momma. I thought you weren't getting yours done today," my daughter said, through a contorted mouth. I waved her off. I'm grown! I got this!

"Not a lot o customer here today. I fall asleep," the owner laughed.

Now is not the time to be laughing. This is not reversible. I ain't a Chia Pet..

After doing the first brow pretty quickly I eased up on the sweating.

She finished the second one. Took a little longer.

Hear the scary music? I didn't scream but I wanted to.

Too much off. Again!

Shoulda known better! Needed my brows to grow back in like two days! By the time I went back to work.

No radio on in the car. Flipped mirror up. No need for reminders Needed time to reflect. The sun was out so I could see, even though she was looking out of her window, that she was smiling hard.






Sunday, December 06, 2015

Vocabulary Lessons


Earlier this year one of my students, who has been in the country less than a year, innocently asked, "What is A Deez Nuts?" Three things were clear: I need to teach the proper use of the articles A and An, subject-verb agreement and obviously he is paying attention and socializing- language acquisition is moving along! As the other students snickered, I calmly wiped the Caramel Brulee latte I projected onto my desk.

Students haven't always been so innocent when they ask about words. Like when they can barely ask you about a word because they are choking back the laughter. Nonetheless, I guess I should just assume they really don't know and stay calm.

Well that didn't happen recently. I went from zero to ten real quick!

It was the last period of the day. I just finished helping a student with an assignment for another class. Students began packing up.

"What's a hooker?"

Everything stopped. In my mind anyway.

How dare she attempt to be amusing in front of the others! They weren't laughing but still.

"Why did you ask me about that word? Where did you see that word?" I asked her.

Before she could answer I continued with the interrogation. "Why would you WANT to know about a hooker!"

She tried to play confused and innocent. But I knew better!

By this time, the other students were curious. Getting in a little closer to us.

"I don't understand why you would ask about that word! Just out of the blue?" I asked, not really expecting her to answer. "I mean it's not like you see a word like that around this classroom do you?" I scoffed.

She pointed to one of my blue pocket charts near the board.

There it was.

"I said HUNKER," she clearly and softly told me.

Hunker was one of the week's vocabulary words for eighth graders.

Students waited for me to respond.

"So what is a hooker?" one of the other students asked. Of course they wanted to know now after my conclusion jumping.

Too cool to be embarrassed I replied, "Oh my Gosh! Look! It's obvious what hunker means- I've got a perfect visual right beside it! Don't you all see the person squatting- hunkering!"

Announcements and bell never late but today it would be.

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

But They're So Cute!

I think I may be having a close to mid-life crisis. Well, close because I'm just three months shy of 44. The older I get the more I seem to revert back to my younger days.
For example, when I was a preteen I did some things that, I just can't explain. Well I can't say WHY I did them. Coerced a close friend or two to follow in my craziness too. One may be reading this.

Not sure of my age but I remember putting the silver foil-like wrapper which covered the Big Red and Wrigkey's gum over the top row of my teeth. And I'd walk around like that. Until my mom slapped it out. Shaking my head at this as I type.

I also did those ridiculous breast exercises that Margaret did in that book by Judy Blume. If God was there for Me he was laughing. Added a twist to it but you'll have to read that earlier post.

So now that I gave a little background maybe my recent stint at 43 may not seem too weird.

Well, I'm pretty sure I need glasses. Thought nothing more than Readers but guess I will let someone trained diagnose me. So I lost the pair of Readers I had so I rushed to purchase a new pair on my way to chaperone my son's field trip. Usually there's nothing really appealing about them and they're cheap BUT this time I found a pair I really liked so I spent a few more minutes than usual at the small carousel of cheap spectacles. Well, they weren't the right number. But there wasn't another pair like them. I did what I had to do- I bought them anyway. I mean what's more important, seeing 100% correctly or seeing maybe 70%, give or take, OR looking cute? Exactky!

Drove to the school. A little slower and with my head tilted down a bit but I got there and parked really close to the curb. I'm releived that no one accused me of being inebriated when I think about the ordeal. I stepped up into the building higher than needed and went down the wrong hall, until my son called me.
"Mama? Why were you going that way," he asked. Looking at me peculiarly.

I took the glasses off and cleaned them intensely with the end of my shirt. No use. Couldn't change them. Finally connected with the class and other parents and walked slowly with the blobs to the cars.

My son ran up to me as I neared "the car" and begged me to just take the darn things off. I knew I had to when I realized that I was trying to unlock another white car. 'What's wrong with this stupid remote!" But those glasses were so cute! Any other irrational 43-year-old woman would've agreed.