Wednesday, February 28, 2007

A Flat Iron and a Rat's Nest

First of all let me say, if you have a bad hair day it is down hill from there......In my teens I was queen of long straight hair. This was the 70's and I could roll my hair in 20 seconds......with orange juice cans. It gave the flatest and straightest look with a little poof of body. Sometimes I would even iron my hair. With the iron! After the birth of my first child, I felt the all too common urge for a new and sophisticated young mother look. I cut my waist long hair into a short and layered shag. It was total impulse and I really did not like it although I wouldn't have admitted it back then. I sorta started a craze around here and everyone started cutting their hair so I didn't feel so alone. I let it grow out shoulder length and got a swing cut. This was my 20's. Then in my 30's I tried for up to date fashion again and went with the perm. I loved easy to take care of and I could get ready in a blink. I wore my hair long and permed for that decade. Great ponytails, great hair pulled back.....or great just wild. With a few occasional trims and highlights for changes, I kept it that way. Then in my 40's I was confused. I still sported a ponytail, wore my hair up in a clip alot, hair pulled back ( bows were in BIG time and the girls and I had every color ), kept it rather shoulder length and straight. Towards the end of my 40's I started feeling a little like I needed to act my age and wear my hair accordingly. So, I went for a "Faith Hill" shorter cut. Like the one she has on her CD Breathe. I loved this cut and it still let me fluff and rat and make big hair. Lots of hair spray. I love big hair and the older I get the more I love it. Texas is all about BIG HAIR. BIG BIG BIG....rat rat tease tease poof poof spray spray. I grew up watching in admiration at my older cousins tease their hair. But, it passed all my decades not in style so I never really got the knack for it. From about middle 40's to present I joined the rat, tease, poof and spray club. I swear that someday they are going to find out women's lungs are coated with hair spray. But, it wasn't alot of fluffy and it wasn't tacky but I got the hang of it. I found out it even gave this 5'1" girl some heighth! Yet, everytime lately I have gone in to get a cut, she has used this flat iron thing on me. She says, "quit teasing your hair." I walk out flat haired and get in the car, go around the block and dig my brush out of the console and tease, tease, poof poof. It is just comfortable.

And then it happened. The girl that has done my hair since the beginning of all this is trying to get me to go straight again. "It'll make you look younger," she said! She slapped a flat iron in my hand and said " try this for a few weeks. " I am all about looking younger. But, I am totally uncoordinated with that thing not to mention it burns at temperatures that I expect it to ignite my side of the bathroom. There is a technique to it for sure. Opposite of anything I have ever tried. I am trying but I am not good at it. I looked great when I left her shop that day but for some reason when I leave my house I look like I was attacked by 50 slobbering St. Bernards. It's not working out. I'll give it a few more weeks. Maybe another lesson in the shop. We'll see.

I totally see why older women cut their hair short and go blue. Not gray but blue. Then they go to the beauty shop every week to maintain it. They don't sell flat irons at their salon. They still roll with plastic rollers, give perms, rat, tease and poof. I am so scared that I am fixing to break down and make an appointment there. I feel like I did when I was 12. Not old enough for lipstick . Yet........ But now, I am not old enough yet for permed blue hair. I just wish I could find a style that would grow with me into the golden (er) years. Men have it made. They do not have to worry about their hair. They don't even have to worry if they don't have any hair. They can get ready to go somewhere in 5 minutes flat. So, I'm sitting here today with my flat hair. Worrying about trying it again tomorrow. I feel much shorter, I know that.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Are You Sure It's Only Tuesday?

I can NOT believe that it's not Friday yet. I don't even remember last Friday. I think I need a vacation. My mom has been sick and in the hospital. Good thing....she's home today. Feeling weak and coughing but at least it was not pneumonia. She got out this morning just in time to accompany Daddy and I to his Dr. appt. After waiting 2 1/2 hours to see this Dr. I think we were all ready to go. There is absolutely NO excuse for a Dr. to keep his patients waiting that long with no explanation. I finally had to open the door because I was starting to feel claustrophobia coming on! Plus, I wanted to see what was so important out there that he was not in with us. After leaving there with really no more answers but a few more explanations I started to compose myself again.

Ashley had a wonderful baby shower on Saturday. It has been a long time since I have seen so many people turn out for a shower. There had to be over 100 people there. I think she can now officially open her own BabiesRUs. What wonderful friends! Then the lovely part was that at least 8 of her best friends, all the way from Kindergarten were there. I got a picture of them all together......all grown up but all still gorgeous. They had a great time remembering when. BA's mom came and brought a friend and we really enjoyed getting to meet her. Both great grandmothers were there. Now, we are ready to get Possum here. That is what I call her.

Speaking of vacations........several weeks ago during one of these "funk" days like I am having today, I called a made reservations for our entire family at the beach this summer. It is at a very nice resort style hotel and I booked the penthouse overlooking the pool with the balcony overlooking the ocean. I could not afford it all but I did it anyway. Somehow, I will have the money when the time gets here. We are all super excited about it. By that time, Possum will be here and her new cousin, Baby Duck. Baby Duck isn't due until just a few weeks before we go so she better be on time! I plan to rock babies on the balcony for a week. It'll be a great opportunity for the new mommies to get some rest and sun while they are at it.

In the meantime, I'll dream of ocean waves and babies and count off the days until then. I have to have something to look forward to in order to make it through. It's just an earthly vacation and an earthly goal. I do have loftier ones and that includes an all expense paid trip to Heaven. I don't even need a reservation for that one. I think it is already made.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

There Was A Little Girl

TODAY IS MY SISTER'S BIRTHDAY. We share February birthdays and growing up we always shared a party. Usually right in the middle on Valentine's Day. I wish I could share a party with her today. I wouldn't even compare presents! I don't really think she knows how much she means to me. That's her in the cheerleader pose lurking over me. And yes, we have octopus toys on our heads. And yes, again, I have on TURTLENECK pajamas. What's the deal with putting a claustrophobic child in turtleneck pj's! HA. Love you MOM! They are cute. And yes, this was before I was able to get my eyebrows waxed!

Her Kindergarten class calls me each year on my birthday and sings to me. This year after they sang, they counted my age out by 5's! You know, 5, 10 , 15, 20.......I didn't know 5 year olds could count that high! So, today I called her and wanted to know if she wanted me to count by 5's for her age. She's witty like me and quickly responded, "My age can't be counted by 5's! " She meant without a remainder of some numbers. But, I am the oldest. So, I couldn't really argue with that. I am just not mathematically inclined like she is.

Not only is she mathematically inclined she is just durn smart. I mean seriously smart. She used to get upset stomachs if she made a 99. She never procrastinated. She always did her homework by herself without help. While I whined in the background because I didn't get it. This probably explains why she was VALEDICTORIAN in high school and VALEDICTORIAN at ACU with a 4. ++++ who knows how much more GPA. I majored mostly in social skills which if there was an award, well I would've won that.

She was precious too. And well behaved. And polite. And never any trouble. She was even a middle child yet did not fit that stereotype. She had a million friends. Teachers remarked, " Are you sure you are Lynn's sister?" She still is precious only now she is also beautiful. She is a remarkable woman. She is looked up to by everyone she encounters. Everywhere I go someone knows her. Someone adores her. And rightly so. She's a woman full of integrity, self confidence, and love. She is a woman of God. She lives that. She walks the walk and talks the talk. Which makes her also beautiful on the inside. Or as my sweet Ashley would say, "She's going to Heaven magna cum Laud." And she is. Her children all fit right into her mold and are carbon copies. Her husband adores her. And likewise. She is even submissive! Our "baby sister" is just like that too~ and NO, my parents swear I am not adopted.

As we get older, our relationship, love, and concern for each other just seems to deepen and deepen and deepen. I adore her children/grandchildren and she does mine. When my kids were at ACU she finished raising them! THANK GOD, for Aunt Jody. She did their laundry, "rocked" them when they were homesick, and nursed them when they were sick and too far to come home. When they wanted homemade chocolate chip cookies they knew where to go. For that I can never repay her. Or her husband.

I seriously can not remember a memory that she is not a part of. Although, I still do not remember Lake Whitney. We still love to be together. We still love to talk on the phone. We still love to laugh together. She's dropped everything and rushed to my bedside several times when I was sick. She's a phone call away when I need her. She's prayed for me ( for a long long time, I might add) and still does. Prayed for my health, for my kids, for my marriage, and for my soul. Do you realize how much that means to have a sister like that? And I have 2 !

I have now rightfully earned my place as HEAD SISTER. She and Kathy ( baby sister ) both let me boss them around again in this stage of our lives. I certainly take every opportunity to do that. It feels good since my kids are grown and I can't boss them anymore. I like to be the boss. Does that surprise you? Seriously, HEAD SISTER means nothing.....she is my strength.......she is my soul precious sister. Who I love with all my heart. HAPPY BIRTHDAY dear SISSIE, happy birthday to you.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Friends Are A Gift From God

Tawana, Becky and Lynn
We think alike. Sometimes we show up in things that are the same color, without planning. We send each other the same cards. We laugh at the same jokes. We need each other. We share history. We share the same faith. We share the same Savior. Although, we don't share the same blood, and are not really sisters, we share the same families, children, and parents.

I heard once that if you have one true friend in life then you should count yourself lucky. I count myself very lucky. There were four of us at one time until cancer came and took one of us way too early. We stood at her casket and couldn't believe she was gone. We comforted her children who were without a mother and later were honored to be the three mothers at the weddings when those children wed. We have been through so much together. We met as teenagers, young newlyweds. We have coached each other through labor, through children in the terrible two's, through the teenage years, and watched each other's children get married. We have become grandmothers together. There is not one remembered memory that I have that they have not been a part of.

We love the same music, movies, and books. We decorate our homes the same, we like the same paintings. We sometimes think each other's thoughts. We are different yet we are the same. When one of us is weak the others are strong. We are accountability partners, prayer partners, and sisters in Christ. We have sung in a trio for over 20 years. Our voices are so in tune with each other that we rarely have to practice. We have sung at weddings, funerals and church functions.

They have sat by my bedside in the hospital and prayed for me. And questioned the doctors when my own family couldn't find the words through fear and grief. We have walked through shadows together. There have been marital problems, children problems, divorce, and death. We have laughed together, cried together and grown together. I don't remember angry words every passing between us. Constructive critiscm yes, but only out of love! And points well taken. There are certainly things that I could not have survived if it had not been for them. For their unfailing love, their unconditional love, and their hope that we will all be in Heaven together, I'll always be grateful.

I have 2 beautiful real life sisters that I share the same things with too and they are my greatest joys and strengths. However we don't live in the same town. We though have the same parents, the same ancestory, the same blood. They are remarkable women of Christ. My personal strength. I love them dearly. I'll share them with you soon. Yet, these 2 remarkable friends are my sisters too. And I love them too. It's hard to distinguish what God has given me. How lucky can I be?

And someday if someone asks me how long we have been friends I'll say, "Oh us? For as long as I can remember."

Monday, February 12, 2007

Congratulations.....It's a Boy

In the 1980's sonograms and knowing the sex of your baby before birth was pretty much unheard of. That is unless the little elderly black woman with magical powers passed you in the grocery store and leaned in close to whisper. And to me that day she said, "Congratulations, it's a boy." Sure, I thought. In my world of pink, purple, Barbie, Pretty Ponies, Strawberry Shortcake and Friends, and pink Huffy bikes......there was no absolute room for a boy. I had not ever been around boys that much. I had 2 sisters. I knew more about girls. I had never purchased a football or didn't even know how to keep score. The only men that had ever been in my life, that I loved deeply, was my Daddy and my husband. But, there was no denying when they placed that little almost 8 lb bundle in my arms that I was in love with another man. OH MY. My mind could not contain all the dreams I had for him that day. He was a most delightful baby. He bouncy, happy and all boy. Most of our friends nicknamed Mitch "Happy Boy". That was how he always was.....happy. Since, I was already in the work world by this time I had to find a sitter for him. My mother and grandmother kept him almost all the time. They were totally in love with him. My grandmother was in her very late 90's and she doted on him from sun up to sun down. Years later when we were forced to have her live in the rest home, Mitch went everyday with my mother there. He loved the old people. And they loved him. He helped the orderlies hand out supplies to the residents everyday. He rode on the cart and gave each resident a hug. To this day, he has a most special place in his heart for elderly people. We visited her everyday in the nursing home. When she lost her eyesight, she would run her fingers over his face and smile. She passed away at the age of 104 and Mitch was 6. At the funeral home he asked us to lift him up so he could see her. He stroked her hair and touched her hands. Then he wanted us to raise her up so he could see her angel wings. There is not a day that goes by that he doesn't think of her. He is kind and tender just like she was. My mom and dad adored him too. He took trips with them. He loved to go to the air base with Poppi and get a soldier haircut. They used to make contracts up with each other for school grades. Daddy liked to make sure that he applied himself educationally as well as athletically. And he was quite the entertainer. He always had us laughing. We used to say that he was born with orange blood because from the minute he could talk, gesture, or choose his wardrobe he had on TEXAS LONGHORN gear. Don't even ask me where he got that from. We had never been major sports oriented. Remember we went to ballet, tap, and had tea parties. He would wear those little football uniforms complete with helmet until the shirts and pants pulled at the seams. Then we would buy the next size and so on and so on. Every Halloween for his entire life, he was a football player. When he was 3 and could sign up for soccer he was ready. Then it was on to tball, football, and Little Dribblers. We spent the better part of 18 years in the bleachers either at the field or in the gym. I learned to keep score, I learned plays. I learned when to yell and when to shut up. Since we lived in the country he learned to entertain himself. He would kick the football across the pasture and run get it and run the other way to score. Sometimes, he would use his stopwatch and time himself in races. Then, for hours and hours he would shoot hoops. He slam dunked every door frame in this house. He dribbled the ball over every surface and ate with it in his lap. When his sisters would practice cheerleading stunts and dances he would join them in the yard. One year when he was the quarterback he was benched with an injury, he donned the TIGER SUIT and cheered with the cheerleaders. Multi talented, wouldn't you say. It wasn't long and he was back out and running down field. But, basketball was his love. He loved basketball. He was the three point man and one night during his junior year he brought the team a victory by popping 6 - 3 pointers in a row. He normally scored the highest points each game....sometimes 30 +. Yes, this mother was on her feet! And, I wonder why I have a heart condition! Slowly, the girls began growing up and one by one left home. By the time he was 9 they were both off at college. And he was an only child. But, our house by no means was quiet. He was such an easy child and I loved to be with him. We would make cookies, go to ball games, watch movies, and host all the boys out for bonfires and basketball tourneys. As well, as ATARI tournaments. He'll be the first to admit he is my baby. My favorite baby! It was so hard to pack his duffles for ACU. His high school career had been awesome. His whole school experience had gone just way too fast. I had the biggest lump in my throat the day we pulled up at ACU and so did he. I knew though that whereever he went or whatever he did he would be a success. And he is. He was a proud and handsome young man, full of positive self esteem, full of God, and full of BIG dreams. He wasn't on campus long when he noticed a beautiful and talented athlete. A softball player. That is now his wife and my daughter. They are expecting the first member of their team in June and I am assuming I am going to have to dig out my old collection of baseball shirts, etc. I don't want to be the only grandmother not supporting that team! I am so proud of him. Of his example to others. I am proud of the way he is patterning his life to be a Godly father. I love that he can cry. I love that he is so forgiving. I love how he loves his beautiful wife. I love how he calls me on his way home from work just because. We don't get to see each other very much because they live 6 hours away. But, I think of him all day and we talk almost every day. I pray for him and all my children in breathless whispering prayers all day. He will always be the best 30th birthday gift I ever received. I love you Bubs.

Saturday, February 03, 2007


GO RED day was a great success in my hometown. The mayor signed a proclamation that all day yesterday was GO RED DAY. I think I had more fun all day than I have had in a LONG LONG time. It wasn't all about me.........I am certainly not the only person in the town to have had a heart attack or health problems. But, everywhere I went yesterday people had on the RED SHIRTS that I had designed. What started out with only about 25 ended up to be everywhere. Not only my table was covered in shirts for weeks but so was everyone of the rooms of my house. One of my good friends had made mine with the heart in the center covered with sparkling crystal rinestones. I told her I was going to feel like RAINBOW FISH ( read the famous children's, RAINBOW FISH by Marcus Pfister ) when my heart was so pretty and sparkly and the others were so plain. So, I began to glue one sparkling crystal onto every single of the 300 tshirts I sold. They turned out awesome. I attached a little handwritten thank you on each tshirt explaining the single crystal. I made my final deliveries yesterday morning before school for "late" orders and when I walked into the hospital the shirts were everywhere......the same at the bank......the same all over town. Then when I got to school it was a sea of red. We had an awesome assembly by this TALENTED woman who sang us through the history of legendary BLACK AMERICANS in music. WHAT A VOICE.....We rocked with Aretha Franklin, James Brown, Louis Armstrong, Billie Holliday, and on and on. She told stories of BLACK HISTORY along with her vocal presentations. It was unbelievable. When she said rock, we ALL DID. You couldn't help but feel the beat. I told one of my friends it made even an old church of Christ girl want to get up and dance! The children were in awe of her as we all were. They behaved perfectly and she praised them for it. It was educational and entertaining. But, as I stood at the back of the auditorium, all I saw was red tshirts. For sure I know that heart awareness was alive and well in my town yesterday! They talked about it everywhere I went. I even had people tell me they were going to start taking better care of themselves! The kids too!

This is the picture of my favorite middle child, Ashley that went with the earlier post entitled the same. I have tried unsuccessfully to upload it since I posted about her. Major technical difficulties at neenasnest that have now been resolved thanks to DELL online support!

But, with her being a middle child, it is important that I did not leave out such details of her life story. Her sister had a "picture" and by golly now she has one! In all seriousness, she is as beautiful on the inside as out. Feisty, but beautiful. Can you see she has her husband literally "wrapped around her fingers"? God bless him.