Friday, June 30, 2006

Through a Child's Eyes

“Seth, get dressed so we can go to the store.” He flashed me a look that would freeze hell over, and I got the impression he would rather kiss a toad then to be seen anywhere with me. In his teenaged mind, I was “dumb as a stump” and “uncool”; a real embarressment for him.

“Why?” Seth drawled, never taking his eyes off the television. “I’m happy right here.” That child is going to drive me to the funny farm, I thought, gritting my teeth.

“Get dressed . . . now.”

“But my show is coming on in a few minutes. Why do I have to go with you anyway? I’m not a baby anymore.” I counted to ten before I responded. I felt, and I knew I looked, like a spooked cat on a caffeine high.

“Okay Seth . . . here’s the deal. You don’t have to go to the store with me. But,” I said, holding up my hand to stop his premature celebration. “You have to stay with your grandmother while I’m gone.”

“A babysitter? I don’t need Granny to watch me,” he yelped.

I gave him a look that would make a hardened criminal cringe. His defiance melted like a popsicle on hot concrete. “Okay, okay. I’ll get dressed and go to Granny’s house,” he mumbled as he skulked off to his room.

I sighed and rubbed my temples. This is definitely going to be an aspirin popping, soaking in a bubble bath day. A gentle tug on my sleeve interrupted my thoughts.

“I . . .I go? I go in the Dodge,” my toddler, Robert, asked.

“Of course you’re going. I couldn’t leave my big helper behind.”

A few minutes later, a sullen-looking Seth emerged from his bedroom. “Well, let’s get this over with.”

“You’re a ray of sunshine today,” I said putting my arm around him as we walked out the door.

“Don’t touch me! I don’t like people touching me.” Seth jerked away and walked into the garage, re-appearing a few minutes later pushing his bicycle.

“Are you going to ride your bike to Granny’s?” Jonathan ignored me as he straddled his bike and raised the kickstand. “You certainly have a pretty day for a bike ride,” I called to him.

“Whatever,” he yelled as he embarked on the mile-long trek to his grandmother’s house. Argh! That boy has the attitude of a badger, I thought, shaking my head sadly as Seth pedaled away.

Robert knocked on the door of the truck with his small fist. “Hello Dodge. I ready to go now.” I opened the door of the truck and smiled as Robert climbed in and got into the
car seat by himself. He was always eager to go places; each trip was a new adventure for him.

At the store, Robert sat in the shopping basket and occasionally yelled “Hey! I love you,” to other shoppers. Some people smiled and talked to him; others scurried away like frightened birds.

One woman, with a face like a bull terrier, sneered at his sweet remarks as she breezed past. “Mommy, what’s wrong with that lady?” my observant little wonder asked. I was hurt someone could be so cruel to a child.

“Oh her. She’s been sucking on a lemon.”

Contented with my answer, Robert played with the colorful cereal boxes in the cart , and chattered happily to other shoppers. Later, we encountered the unpleasant woman in the dairy section. As we approached, she gave us a look that could curdle the nearby milk. With a disdainful sniff, she turned back and studied a display of butter.

“Hey lady,” Robert called. Oh dear Lord, please don’t let her turn around and look at us. To my relief, she ignored us. Undaunted, Robert continued to call to her.

“Hey lady. Have you been eating lemons? My mommy says you have.” Horrified, I whipped my basket around and raced away like a scalded cat. I spent the rest of the time glancing nervously behind me and around every aisle. I just knew the unpleasant woman was hiding behind a display, waiting to pound me senseless. I could just imagine the newspaper headlines the next day: LOCAL WOMAN AND TODDLER DONE IN BY A CAN OF CREAM CORN.

Finally, our arduous task complete, my little charmer and I paid for our groceries and headed home. After everything was put away, and Robert was given a snack, I sank into my favorite chair. I sighed as it enveloped me in its soothing velvety embrace. I had just closed my eyes when a small hand touched my knee. I opened my eyes and found myself staring into the sky-blue eyes of Robert.

“Wanna go outside?”

“No baby. It’s too hot.” That was an understatement; it was like a sauna outdoors.

“I wanna go outside?” Robert asked, this time a little more insistent. I saw tears gathering in his eyes. The clouds outdoors were rain-laden, but the storm clouds gathering over Robert’s head were even more ominous. I eased myself out of the chair and started toward the door.

“Okay buddy, but just for a little while.”

Robert shrieked in delight and bolted out the door. The storm clouds were disappearing, the late afternoon sun shone gently upon us. I was oblivious to everything as I sat on the porch and pouted like a spoiled child. I am so tired. Doesn’t Robert realize that?

“Hey! Look at the bird.” Robert shouted, pointing at the afternoon sky. Above soared a red tailed hawk. Its cry echoed in the stillness as it circled overhead; for a brief moment, my soul took wings and I soared with him, dipping and swaying in the evening breeze, dancing the ageless dance of wisdom and majesty. I watched the hawk until I could see it no longer.

Robert hopped around excitedly. “Hey! What’s that?” He pointed at the setting sun framed by billowy clouds. The sun’s rays caused the outer edges of the clouds to glow like polished crystal. Hmm. There really are clouds with silver linings, I mused.

“Those are clouds, Robert. Aren’t they pretty?”

“Yeah, pretty.”

The wind picked up, and Robert turned and faced straight into it, smiling blissfully. I remembered the previous summer when a delighted Robert raced down the beach into the stiff ocean breeze. He ran with his arms thrown over his head in reckless abandon, chasing the curious seagulls congregated on the shore.
Robert truly enjoys everything life has to offer. When did I stop? I wondered. Soon a sweaty Seth came pedaling up the drive.

“What are you doing out here?” Jonathan asked, riding his bike towards the porch.

“Hi Seth. Did you see the wonderful sunset?”

“No,” he grumbled. “I was too busy picking my nose.” At that moment, Robert squealed in delight and dropped to his knees. Like an inchworm, he scooted across the porch, trailing behind a bug he had found.

I realized I should face life with the same delight and enthusiasm as Robert did. He saw every day as a new adventure, and wasn’t ashamed to show love and compassion. I was ashamed of all the times I had been too busy “picking my nose” to enjoy the little things in life, too busy to tell people how I felt about them. I grabbed Robert and squeezed him tight.

“Thank you, baby.” I said, choking back a sob.

“Welcome,” Robert grunted. He struggled out of my arms and went in search of his new bug friend.

“What are you thanking him for?” Seth grumbled.

“For teaching me how to enjoy the little things in life.” I watched as Robert again ran headlong into the wind. I would forever be grateful to him for showing me the world through a child’s eyes.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Open mouth, insert foot.

In conversations, I sometimes use the wrong word in sentences. One crisp autumn day, when I was a freshman in high school, my drama teacher gave me wonderful news. During the last class of the day--which was English with my drama teacher--time passed as slowly as molasses on a cold day. I fidgeted in my seat, chewing fretfully on my pencil and trying to focus on the worksheet in front of me.

The dismissal bell buzzed like a horde of angry bees, and my classmates and I bolted toward the doors like a stampede of crazed cattle, me being the heifer in the lead.

The bus ride home was torture, and I unconsciously pushed against the back of the cracked and peeling seat in front of me, willing the bus to go faster. My best friend sat beside me and chattered happily, but she might as well have been talking to a brick wall; my mind was on getting home and sharing the incredible news with my parents. Soon, we reached my driveway, and I barely waited for the bus to stop before I charged down the aisle, off the bus, and down the shady tree-lined drive to my house. I swept into the front door with the force of a twister, threw down my books, and in a grand theatrical style, announced to my parents--who were in the living room--"Guess what?"

"What?" Daddy asked, taking a sip from his coffee cup and not bothering to look up from his paper.

"I'm a member of the lesbian society!"

Daddy's eyes bugged out like a bullfrog's and he blanched beneath his swarthy complextion as he choked and spewed coffee all over his newspaper.

"You're WHAT?" he spluttered.

I crindged in my Reeboks and took a step backward towards the door. Maybe this wasn't good news after all. I thought people liked actresses.

Mama laughed until tears came to her eyes. "No baby, you must mean THESPIAN SOCIETY."

"Yeah, that's it. What's the diff?" Mama took me aside and told me the difference. I blushed when I realized my mistake. Most people learn from their mistakes, but not me.

Years passed without incident until a few weeks before I married John. In the required interview before the ceremony, the priest asked me if I truly loved John. "Oh yes, I'm deeply in lust with him," I babbled happily. My response got me a discrete jab in the ribs from John, and a raised eyebrow from the priest. But wait. . .it gets better.

After my car accident several years ago, Mama stayed with us after I was released from the hospital. I don't like to take anything stronger than an tylenol, but because of my severe pain, I was forced to take a painkiller strong enough to knock a horse off it's feet. On afternoon was particularly trying for the family; I had a follow-up with the doctor, and John picked up his C-PAP for his sleep apnea. As soon as we got back home, I took a painkiller; I felt like someone was jabbing me with a hot poker all over my body. I turned on the TV, and collapsed on the couch while Mama sat in the rocking chair nearby.. The pill took affect immediately, and dimly I was aware of my mom groaning in the chair. Even in my condition I was alarmed.

"Are you okay?" I asked her groggily.

"Yes baby. Just having ANGINA pains."

"John, what are you doing?" I called.

"Just putting together my C-PAP, why?"

"Cause Mama is having VAGINA pains and might have to go to the ER. Mom," I slurred, feeling sleepier by the minute, "John is putting his PAP-SMEAR machine together. He'll take you to the ER if you need to go."

I was alarmed when I heard Mama laughing, not just a guffaw, but a side-splitter. "Oh baby, you've got that all wrong," she gasped. When she was composed, Mama told me what I said. "Need to watch the words you use, hon." she said.

As the years go by, I'm better about choosing my words and paying attention to what I say. It requires little effort on my part, but I prefer a keyboard and a monitor any day; at least I can press "delete" when I use the wrong word.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

My burial

Thunder crashed in the distance, and I glanced briefly at the sky before returning to my task. Dark clouds, drooping as low as a pregnant cow's belly, hung overhead, threating to release a torrent of rain at an time. Lightning flickered menacingly within the clouds, as if impatient to unleash it's fury on the sun-baked earth. The wind carressed my sweaty ckeek, carrying the message of rain to my nostrils.

Darn it, I'll have to hurry,I thought, struggling with the heavy shovel. I looked at the slendar box near my feet, and felt some of my resolve return. The contents of the box was hideous, and I intended to bury it deep within the dark musty confines of the earth, never to be troubled by it again. As my muscles and joints groaned in protest, I wished for the hundredth time I had been blessed with muscles like "Rosie the Rivoter."

"All. . .most. . .done." I grunted, tossing the last shoveful of dirt aside. Wiping my hands on my grundgy shorts, I knelt in the dirt, picked up the box and dropped it into the hole I had labored over. Nature couldn't wait until I was finished, and tiny raindrops fell swiftly, stinging my face like thousands of knitting needles. I sighed as I watched the pile of dirt beside hole begin to resemble a mound of oozing melted chocolate. This would definately make my task harder. "Oh well, no rest for the weary," I said, shoveling a small mound of damp earth into the hole; at that moment, my small hole seemed like a gaping abyss to me.

Rain saturated my hair and ran in rivlets down my face, stinging my eyes; still, I shoveled on like a woman possessed. I had to rid myself of the "albatoss" hanging around my neck for as long as I could remember. In a few minutes the hole was filled. "Done and done," I said happily, give the mound of earth a final pat with the shovel. I whirled around and came fact to face with John. "Wh-what are you doing here?" I asked, alarmed. I was so intent on my task I didn't hear the crunch of wheels in the drive when John arrived.

"Watching you. What are you doing?" he asked curiously.

"Burying something."

"That's obvious. Where are the kids?"

Judging from the oh-my-gosh-what-has-she-done look on his face, I knew I had better put John's mind at ease.

"They're in the house watching cartoons."

"Oh. Whatcha burying?"

"Me to know and you to find out," I said mischievously as we walked to the house. It drove John crazy the rest of the night.

"You're not doing some voodoo curse, are you?" he asked a few hours later as we were watching a movie. I went ahead and put him out of his misery; I knew he would wart me to death until I told him.

And now, my dear friends , I'll tell you.

The outside of the box is plain, devoid of any markings. Open the box and you find nothing. . .not in the physical sense at least. You see, I took everything that has haunted me and put it in the box, all my distrust, self-doubt, and grudges, and buuried them deep both in the physical and emotional sense.

Sunday, June 25, 2006

What we need

Inspired by Nankin's blog.

The world is a large pot of stew; each nationality, culture, race and religion being the key ingredient. There's two vital seasons miss though, respect and compassion.

I was taught at a very young age to show respect for my fellow human. "I don't care if it's a homeless person," Daddy said, "you still show them the respect you would give the president." Once I made the mistake of talking to someone on the ground while I sat on my horse. Daddy saw me and was irrtated. Waiting until the conversation was over, he walked over and lectured me. "Never talk to someone afoot while you're on horseback. Aways dismount and talk to them."

"Why?" I asked.

"Because you're looking down on them. Where do you think 'get down off your high horse came from?" Daddy was a gentleman in every sense of the word. He was always the first to rise when a lady entered the room, and the old, cattle-stomped, Stetson was hastily whipped of his head when he talked to women. I never understood, until recently why the women grinned broadly when performed such simple acts.

A few months ago I was at a cattleman's show when John introduced me to a couple of Texas Rangers (lawmen) he knew. As like my dad, Stetsons where hastily whipped off in my presence, and the two men smiled broadly and looked me in the eye as they spoke softly to me. Happiness engulfed me like a blanket, and I frantically filed that moment away in my mind. You see, they had made me feel like a lady with their once simple act.

On the way home, I thought of how things had changed. When I was younger, motorists greated each other with a smile and a wave as they passed, even if they didn't know each other. Not know. A friend of mine, a few months ago, smiled and waved at a passing motorist. Astonished, she looked in her rearview mirror and saw the other motorist whip around and stat following her. Afraid for her lifr, she pulled into the well-lit parking lot of a gas station. The other motorist, a male, approached and banged angrily on her window.

"Who do you think you are b*tch? I don't know you! Don't you EVER wave at me again!" The idiot got in his car and drove off, leaving my distraught friend in the parking lot.

I've had my share of the finger, and doors slammed in my face by people walking into a building in front of me, but nothing like that.

Today, I was at the local gas station buying drinks. (Sodas). I had a brace on my right badly spained wrist, and my left hand was bandaged. BTW, I cut my hand today on a can of pineapple. Don't tell me you're surprised!

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw a man standing behind me. I bet he wants me to get out of the way. As I struggled with the bag, the man behind me said, "Here, let me help you with that." He smiled broadly as he helped me with the drinks. Maybe compassion is still around, maybe they're just slumbering; I hope they wake up, soon.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Shutting 'er Down

I had a post almost completed when suddenly the monitor went black. My computer was eerily quiet. "No! This can't be happening!" I screeched. My heart racing like a car stuck in neutral, I pressed the 'on' button of the computer, hoping to hear the soothing whirl of the computer's fan as it started up; I heard nothing.

My stomach did flip-flops as I thought of all the story files on my crashed hard drive, months of work was now destroyed. Like a big baby, I cried.

"What's wrong Mama?" Seth asked. He had been poking around in my room as I typed.

"The computer is broken."

"No it isn't."

"It isn't? How do you know?"

"I unplugged it from behind your bed. I needed the outlet. What me to plug it back in?"

At that moment, I didn't know whether to hug him, or pinch him. "It would be advisable," I said wryly.

He nodded, plugged it in, and the computer came on. I depend on my computer, perhaps more than I should. I was horrified on my last week long trip to New Orleans (before Katrina) that I had to use a pen and paper to work on a story; even more horrifying was my handwriting, not even a doctor could have read it.

I never realized how dependant my children was upon electronics until yesterday. My toddler asked me to read a book, and I agreed. I expected for him to hand me a book, and was surprised when he tried to ram a CD-ROM of toddler stories into my mouth.

So today, I'm going to take the advice of Melissa, turn of the computer, and spend time with the kids the old fashioned way.

Whew, so glad to know this. Glad I'm not a puppy or anything else.

You Are A Woman!

Congratulations, you've made it to adulthood.

You're emotionally mature, responsible, and unlikely to act out.

You accept that life is hard - and do your best to keep things upbeat.

This makes you the perfect girlfriend... or even wife!

Monday, June 19, 2006

Whose law is it?

The first Friday in June was the 2nd, but for me it might as well had been Friday the 13th. It started off early that morning as I sniffed the air like a hungry wolf. The aroma of last night's pasta sauce still lingered in the air, but it wasn't the smell I longed for; it wasn't the smell of fresh brewed coffee. "No, no, no. This can't be happening," I mumbled as I slipped on my fuzzy bear house shoes and trudged down the hall to the kitchen. Yawning I walked over to the counter where the coffee maker sat. The pot sat, obviously freshly washed, on the base of coffeemaker, a mug sat on the counter nearby, a note propped against it.

Hey honey, there wasn't enough coffee for two people, so I drank it
Hope you don't mind.


"Mind? Of course I mind." I growled. At that moment, I would have happily sold my first born for a steaming cup of java. The solemn chiming of the grandfather clock in the hall reminded me I only had an hour to get the kids dressed, get breakfast, and get Seth to 4H day camp.

Never enough time in the day, I'm always rushing somewhere. "Seth, get up!" I called, striding down the hall. I would have had more success trying to bring FRANKENSTEIN to life; there wasn't a peep from either one of my children.

I thought it would save time if I got ready first, and raced off to my bedroom. I have hardwood floors in my house, and when they're regulary waxed, they're as slick as ice and a hazard. I didn't see the small silver metal disc on the floor of my bedroom, stepped on it, flapping my arms like a giant heron as I went skidding across the room. Pictures on the wall shook on their hangers as I hit the floor with a thud and slammed into my dresser. I lay on my back and closed my eyes; every muscle in my body ached, and my head pounded as if the entire cast of River Dance were tap-dancing inside my head.

Slowly, I opened my eyes, and looked at my surroundings. A wedding picture hung askew near the doorway, and a couple of books had fallen off the dresser and lay on the floor near me. Every joint in my body screamed in protest as I sat up. My right wrist was swollen and hurt like a toothache.

"Mama, are you okay?" Seth asked, walking into the room.

Having no coffee and being in pain was taking it's toll on me. "No, I always look like I've been sucking on an onion. What do you think?" I snapped.

"Just asking."

"I'm sorry baby, it's my wrist. . .I sprained it." Ever the attentive helper, Seth helped me ice my wrist and put an old brace of mine on it when the swelling went down.

After I took him to 4H, the day got worse. The toddler dropped a piece of candy into my hair, which stuck, he spilled his bowl of spaghetti on my shorts, at which time I looked at the clock and saw it was past time to picked up Seth at camp.

I sighed and ran my fingers through my sticky hair. "No time to change. I never get out and no one I know ever sees me." Yeah right. I grabbed Robert and ran to the GMC, only to find the air conditioning had gone out.

"I'm hot, Mama," Robert whined as we set off.

"Okay baby. I'll roll down the windows and you'll get cooled off."

Time was the enemy as I turned onto a county road and accelerated. It won't hurt to speed a little on this road. No cops ever patrol it. Yeah right. As I topped the hill, I saw him at the bottom; a deputy on the side of the road, obviously working radar. As I drew nearer, he flicked his overhead lights on.

I was at the point of tears now. I HAD been speeding, but a ticket today was the icing on my rancid and molding emotional cake. I pulled over, and taking a deep breath, got the license and insurance ready.

I looked in the rearview mirror and felt my stomach flip-flop as I watched the deputy approach my car. I pressed my knuckles against my mouth, stifling an exasperated shriek.

The deputy approaching knew me well, I had worked with him years ago.

"Madam, I need to see your driver's li--." the deputy stopped in midsentance when he saw my face. " Holy crap, Deb! Is that you?" Mutely, I nodded my head, tears threatening to spill over at any time. "Long time no see girl."

I managed a watery smile, but remained silent.

"What have you been doing? Is this toddler your baby? No offense, but you look like crap."

The last comment was the one that burst my emotional dam. Between sobs, I told him about my horrible day.

I could tell he was trying not to laugh, but merriment danced in his emerald-colored eyes. "You've had a hell of a day," he said. Groaning, he straightened and turned to walk away. "See ya later," he called, getting into his patrol car.

I sat, baking and stunned in the oven-like GMC. The deputy pulled beside me and rolled down his window. "By the way girl, you were traveling 55 in a 40. Keep the speed down."

For once something has gone right, I thought.

When Murphy wrote his law, he had me in mind.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006


I don't know why I thought of this, but when I did, I got the giggles and had to share.

This has got to be the most boring ride home I've ever been on, I thought, sulking against the cool window of the church van as we zipped down highway. For what seemed like the hundredth time, I pressed my nose against the window and squinted my eyes, trying to see some resemblance of scenery in the inky darkness. Not even a loose cow on the side of the road. That would cause some excitement. I heart pounded as I saw the scene unfold in my head.

"Look out! Cow!" someone in the van would scream. The yelling would upset the driver, who would loose control of the bus, we'd hit a light pole and--

Never mind, we don't need that much excitement, I shuddered.

"Psst. Hey Deb, are you asleep?"

I turned in my seat and stared at my friend Carmen. She and I were sophomores at the same high school, went to the same church, and now was returning home with the rest of the church youth group from the skating runk in a nearby town.

"Are you kidding?" I quipped. "I'm too bored to sleep."

"Yeah, me too. Tell me," she asked, scooting closer, "have you and Danny ever parked?"

Danny was my new boyfriend who conviently lived in the town we had just skated in. I indulged myself briefly as I closed my eyes and thought of his sapphire-colored eyes, dark hair, and chisled features.

"Are you kidding!" I yelped, "I'm not going to talk about parking in a church van. You gotta be cr--"

"I thought I told you kids to keep your voices down," the youth director barked from the front seat.

I made a face at youth director, but lowered my voice. "As I was saying, you gotta be crazy. It's none of your business anyway," I hissed.

"Don't get all rowdy," Carmen cooed. "I was just thinking with someone as hot as Danny, you'd--"

"Church functions are not the place to discuss this," I said firmly. I envisioned God hurtling a lightning bolt from the heavens and smiting me where I sat.

"What's the big deal about parking?" a voice behind me yawned. Carmen's sister, Gabriella, poked her head over the back of our seat. Gabby was two years younger than Carmen and I, but we both had mischievous souls and I loved her my own kid sister.

"Oh Gabby, what do you know about parking? You're just a child," Carmen said, waving her hand dismissively.

"I know a lot. I park all the time."

"Oh you do, do you dear sister? Then pray tell us with who."


"No you don't. How dare you spread lies like that!"

I stared in disbelief at the sisters. There was definately a dark side to their dad that no one knew about.

"Uh huh. We park all the time, everytime we're together. We go to Target and park, Wal-Mart and park, the chicken place and park, to church and park."

"Even at church?" I gasped.

"Yep. I park all the time with my mom too, even parked with Carmen before."

It hit Carmen and I at the same time about what Gabby meant. Despite the warnings of the youth director, Carmen and I both burst into gales of laughter.

"Oh, Gabby," Carmen gasped, "do you know what "parking" means?"

"Yeah. It's whenever you're driving, you stop the car and put it in park."

"No. The kind of "parking" we're talking about is when you make out with a guy."

"I definately don't do that," Gabby said indignantly. "I going back to sleep."

Carmen and I giggled the rest of the way home.

Oh the joys of youth. How I miss it sometimes.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

When can I drive?

"Hey Mama, guess what?" my oldest, Seth asked as he helped me in the kitchen last night.


"Sunday is going to be special, know why?"

"Of course, it's Father's Day," I muttered as I stirred a boiling pot of pasta on the stove.

"Is that the only reason you can think of?" Seth screeched, setting a glass on the table with a loud thump.

"Only thing that comes to mind right now," I said turning away to conceal the grin on my face. I knew very well what Sunday was, it was his birthday. I have a mischievous soul, and was thoroughly enjoying his indignation.

"I was born on that day! You know, the 18th?" Seth shook his head and set the table. Ocacasionally I heard him mutter "loose screw" and "must be senile."

Thinking it best to "fess up" before he made reservations for me at the nearest old folk's home, I said wryly, "I know, I think I was there." I had the C-section scar to prove it. I really hate to think I had myself cut open for funnsies.

He turned and studied me critically, as if to judge my mental capabilities before returning to his task. "That was cruel." A hint of a smile tugged at the corner of his lips.

"Aww, come on 'shorty'. I have to have some fun with you." Calling him "shorty" was the furtherest thing from the truth. I stand a hair under 5'7", and at 13, Seth is already eye-level with me.

Seth poked back playfully. "Who are you calling 'shorty', 'shorty'?" We played for a few minutes before turning back to our duties. A few minutes later, Seth walked over to the sink where I was draining the pasta, and cleared his throat.

"Something on your mind, or are you getting sick?"

"I was wondering. . ." Seth said thoughtfully as he traced a pattern on the counter with his finger.

"Wondering what?" I asked, bending over to get another pot out of the bottom cabinet. Not finding what I wanted, I dropped to my knees and stuck my head into the dark cavernous cabinet.

"If I can have a car," Seth blurted.

The shock of his words made me forget where I was, and I jerked my head up, hitting the roof of the cabinet with a resounding thwack. Colorful stars danced merrily in front of my eyes as I sat on the floor and cradled my aching head in my hands.

"Did you just say you wanted a car?"

Seth nodded his head excitedly. "Yeah. The way I see it, is I'll be sixteen in two more years. If you get me a car now, I'll have two years to practice driving it before driver's ed. Then I can breeze though driver's ed and get my license."

I shook my head vigorously. He can't even drive a golf cart without scaring me to death. How does he expect me to let him drive a car?

"Mama please, just hear me out. I can run errands for you after I get my license, I can take Robert to school everyday."

I felt like there was a rock quarry in my stomach when I thought of my both my children in the car together. More than likely, Seth will inhert my lead foot. I had visions of Robert clutching the dashboard in fright as his brother zipped in and out of traffic. I shook my head harder.

"Well when can I have a car?" Seth whined.

Not as long as there's breath left in my body, I wanted to say. I rose unsteadily to my feet and draping my arm around his neck said, "Not until you're much older."

"But I'm not a baby anymore."

Suddenly, it hit me like a ton of bricks. There, on his upper lip, was the faint promise of a mustache. My "baby" was growing up, whether I wanted him to or not. I was powerless to slow the hands of time, time that was taking away my child and leaving me with a young man.


Thanks to everyone for all the warm wishes and prayers for the unknown toddler. Sadly, he passed away yesterday at the hospital.

Saturday, June 10, 2006


Today a toddler disappeared from his family at at one of our river parks and was found later floating in the river. My husband, who is an ex-paramedic/ fireman, and others performed CPR on him until EMS arrived. They took him to the hospial in Austin, but the outlook is bleak; he wasn’t conscious when they left with him.

The little boy was just a baby, just a year older than my youngest. I have no clue who this family is, but I know they are in a torment I cannot, nor do I hope to while I'm alive, fathom. I'm torn up emtionally for this family. I can't get it out of my mind perhaps this morning the family was laughing and joking as they prepared for their day of fun on the river, now they may never see their baby alive again.

So tonight, I'm asking everyone who reads this to please say a prayer for a sweet innocent child.

Weekend CrAzInEsS

It's the weekend (I know, duh!) and even though I should be working my hindparts off, I saw a meme on Perpetualchocoholic's blog and on GoofyJ's blog I just couldn't resist. So hey, it's the weekend, I'll give you 2 for 1.

The one on Goofyj's:

1. YOUR MOVIE STAR NAME: (grandfather/grandmother on your father’s side, your favorite candy)

Rosemary Whopper

2. YOUR “FLY GIRL/GUY” NAME: (first initial of first name followed by “izzle”, first two or three letters of your last name followed by “dizzle”): Dizzle Rodizzle

3. YOUR DETECTIVE NAME: (favorite color, favorite animal):Blue Horse

4. YOUR STAR WARS NAME: (first 3 letters of your name- last 3 letters of mother’s maiden name, first 3 letters of your [former] pet’s name repeated twice): Deb-Lam Dew Dew [ Sounds like "Deb Lamb doo-doo"]

5. SUPERHERO NAME: (“The”, your favorite color, the automobile you drive):The Blue GMC

And on Perpetual's:
1. Full name? Debbie Ana Roppolo. (Yeah, yeah, it's Debra, but if anyone calls me that I'll give them such a pinch! Long story I'm saving for another day)

2.Were you named after anyone? The priestess in the Bible

3. Do you wish on stars? Yes, but Oprah still hasn't come through for me

.4. When did you last cry? This morning when I found out there was no coffee in the house. Seriously, at my uncle's funeral.

5. Do you like your handwriting? That depends. . .does it like me? If it doesn't then I'm going to get a complex and refuse to speak to it anymore.

6. What is your favorite lunch meat? Don't really have a favorite lunch meat. I do love tomatoes, avacado and mozarella on whole wheat though.

7. How many kids? 2 On somedays it feels more like 200 though.

8. Names and ages of kids: 40, 13, and 3. Oops, I included my hubby on that.

9.If you were another person, would you be friends with you? I don't know. I always end up getting mysel in trouble

10. Do you have a journal? Let me think. . .ah yeah!

11. Do you use sarcasm a lot? Every chance I get. If I don't either I'm sick or dead.

12. Would you bungee jump? If that's what it took to get a book published and the editor is smokin' hot.

13. What is your favorite cereal? coffee and a side of coffee. I don't eat cereal. I usually have a bagel with. . . you guessed it. . .coffee.

14. Do you untie your shoes when you take them off? No

.15. Do you think that you are strong? I have to copy Perpetual here. . .only through

16. What is your favorite ice cream flavor? Moolinium Crunch (by Blue Bell)

17.Shoe Size? 9.

18. Red or Pink? Really don't care much for either, but red I guess.

19. What is your least favorite thing about yourself? My nose. It's like a magnet; it attracts toddler's heads, walls, doors, and flying objects

20. Who do you miss most? My dad

22. What color pants and shoes are you wearing? Who says I wearing any? I'm wearing shorts and they're red, and my feet are bare.

23. Last thing you ate? Why? Is it the last thing I'm going to eat? salad

24. What are you listening to right now? I'm Everything You'll Ever Need by Trinere

25. If you were a crayon, what color would you be? "True blue"

26. Favorite Smells? homemade sauce simmering on the stove, fresh baked bread, the earth after a spring rain

27. Last person you talked to on the phone? my mommy

28. The first thing you notice about the opposite sex? eyes and a great smile

29. Do you like the person who sent this to you? Of course!

30. Favorite Drink? Alcoholic--wine Non-alcoholic--It's a tie between sweet tea, coffee, and coca-cola

31. Favorite Sport to Watch? Horse racing and football.

32. Hair Color? Dark brown

33. Eye Color? hazel. They change with my moods and what I'm wearing. Blue--depressed
blueish gray-happy Brown--extremely ticked off and all should run for the hills to escape me

34. Do you wear contacts? Yes, untinted.

35. Favorite Food? Fajitas

36. Scary Movies or Happy Endings? Scary Movies

37. Last Movie You Watched? Cheaper by the Dozen 2

38. Favorite Day of the Year? Christmas

39. Summer or winter? Neither, Fall

40. Who do you hate in life? no one

41. Favorite Dessert? cheesecake

44. What books are you reading? Mama Makes Up Her Mind

45. What's On Your Mouse Pad? I don't use one. My mouse is wireless

46. What Did You Watch Last night on TV? The Sopranos

.47.Rolling Stones or Beatles? Neither

48. What's the furthest you've been from home? Mexico. I walked across the border the second time I went, and I thought they were going to keep me there. Story for another day

49. Do you have a special talent? I don't know about 'special," but I've been told I can charm the spots off a leopard when I feel like it.

50.Favorite quote? "You can do anything you put your mind to." -my dad

51. Your hero: my oldest son

Friday, June 09, 2006

What's Your Sign?

I saw this link on Ms. Vickie's blog. Scary. . . a lot of it applies to me.

I am a Virgo, and here's a few things they say about me:

The Virgin
August 23 to September 23

Traditional Virgo Traits

Modest and shy (Shy? I don't think I have a shy bone in my body.)
Meticulous and reliable
Practical and diligent
Intelligent and analytical (Hee-he. Got it wrong about me there too. I'm pretty much a goofball)

On the dark side....

Fussy and a worrier
Overcritical and harsh
Perfectionist and conservative

Here's a couple of more unteresting tidbits:

"They are careful with money and their interest in statistics makes them excellent bookkeepers and accountants." (They've never seen my checkbook )

"They also make good editors, physicists and analytical chemists. They may also find success as welfare workers, ministering to those less fortunate than themselves. They can be doctors, nurses, psychologists, teachers, confidential secretaries, technologists, inspectors, musicians, critics, public speakers and writers especially of reference works such as dictionaries and encyclopedias."

(As clumsy as I am, would you really want to see me coming toward you with a scapal in my hand ? I might slip during surgery and accidentally remove the wrong thing. And handling chemicals. . .definately not a good idea.)

If you're curious about your sign, you can find the link here.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

A danger to animals

There are three species in this area that threatens the animal population; wolves, cougars, and me. I have a strange influence on my animals, it seems my personality and downfalls rubs off on them. I first noticed in high school with my horse, Sparkling Dewdrops. Dewdrop was a flashy palomino filly given to me by my dad before his death. "Treat her well, and you'll have a friend for life, a friend who'd kill herself to please you." Daddy said.

I wasn't to thrilled with the horse at first. Daddy had just sold Lightning, a palomino stallion I had raised from a foal. In my surly teenaged opinion, there was no other horse on the face of the earth thst could replace the muscular stallion. "She's no Lightning."

"I know she's not, and I know you miss that stallion; but you know we can't keep every horse born on this place." Daddy sighed. "Just give this filly a chance. She might surprise you."

Yeah right, I thought, walking around the palomino and eyeing her critically. She was tall and perfectly porportioned with a muscular rear end. She does look fast, I conceded. I took her head in my hands and stared into her large coffee-colored brown eyes. Maybe it was the hint of mischief that shone in her eyes. Perhaps it was the untamable fighting spirit she possessed that was similar to mine. Whatever it was, we connected.

I was the only one who she tolerated on her back, all other riders were thrown skyward. She a rebellious streak comperable to mine; you couldn't force either one of us to do something we didn't want to do.

Another animal victim was a a sorral filly I bought at a horse auction. After a few months of nursing her back to health, I trained her to the saddle. I still wasn't aware what affect I had on animals. A horse is a herd animal, and looks to the leader for guidance; I was the head of the herd in this filly's eyes.

On afternoon we were working cattle at my mom's house. I walked through a metal gate and jumped when it clanged shut behind me. I though my uncle was walking through behind me, and he would catch the gate. "Holy crap, that scared me!" I told my uncle. My filly was tied to a fence outside the corral and witnessed the whole thing. A little later, I led her to toward the corral. She broke into a sweat and pulled away frantically as we neared that gate.

"It's okay baby," I crooned. "Nothing is gonna get ya." I had no clue she was terrified of the gate now. Still resisting slightly, she allowed me to lead her to the gate. As we walked through, the gate tapped her on the rump.
She squealed and collapsed on the ground. My uncle and a couple of other men rushed to us. Uncle Frankie knelt in the dirt and examined her thoughtfully.

"Did she have a heart attack?" I sobbed.

"No," Uncle Frankie said. "She's still breathing." A couple of minutes later, the filly groaned, shook her head, and struggled to her feet. I put her in her stall for the rest of the day. A couple of days later, again we were walking through a gate when the gate tapped her on the rump. In shock I watched as the filly groaned and collapsed on the ground in a dead faint. A horse can't see directly behind them, so anything touching them in the rear area is a surprise. I believe to this day the filly saw my reaction when the gate startled me. In her mind, she saw the gate as a threat, so when it tapped her, she thought she was a goner.

And now to the present. . .

A dog is a graceful creature, right? Not in my case. The other day I watched as my Husky zipped up the drive toward me, his paws barely touching the ground. He looked like poetry in motion until. . .he tripped over a rock and fell flat on his face. *Sigh* Looks like I've rubbed of onto another animal.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Going crazy. . .wanna come?

For me, going crazy is a short trip. During the past couple of days, Blogger has made my blogroll it's main entree. If this keeps up, I'm seriously thinking about moving my blog to another server. Any suggestions?

I've been extremely busy lately. My "plate" is not only full, it's over-flowing. In addition to writing, I've decided to take the html classes I refered to in early an earlier post. Web page building has always facinated me; it's like a puzzle waiting to be solved. I breezed through the first four lessons thinking, Wow, this is a piece of cake.
Then they sent me the last lesson.The final lesson has struck me like a small tornado, leaving me dazed and confused. I typed in the wrong thing somewhere in the lesson, messed the entire webpage up, and now I can't find the error. Argh!

Lastly, I've recently entered another branch of the entertainment industry. Though I'm extremely excited, I can't help but feel apprehensive. The "waters" are shark infested, and too murky for me to see into the future. Still, life is about taking chances, so I hold my breath and dive in feet-first, hoping for the best.

Monday, June 05, 2006

Have no clue what's going on.

Again Blogger has decided to eat my links to your blogs. I went to my blog and they're gone. I'll try and get everyone's links posted again as soon as I can. I'm so sorry for this.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

The mission

Friday I was on a mission, to find and purchase Triaminic Chest and Nasal Congestion. Sounds easy, right? That's what I thought as I herded my two half-wild children into the Jimmy and set off toward town. "We'll be gone for a few minutes," I promised my pouting children. Yeah right, I should have known better. A late Friday afternoon in the Fall maybe, but in Summer at the beginning of tourist season; traffic would be horrble. Maybe I should go to the pharmacy by the house, iI thought, but the spell Wal-Mart had woven over me was to strong. Nah, ______pharmacy is so small, they probbly wouldn't have what I'm looking for. So off we went to Wal-Mart.

Cars were bumper-to-bumper , and we moved at a snail's pace once we entered the city limits. "I'm hot, I'm hungry." Robert whined, kicking at the back of my seat. Frustrated, I looked at my watch. It normally took me 5 minutes to get from my house to Wal-Mart; today it was taking 15.

I groaned inwardly when we arrived at our destination. The parking was a sea of cars in every shape and size. This is definately going to take a lot longer than I thought. I parked at the side parking lot of the store, plunked Robert in a shopping cart, and raced towards the yawning doors of the store. "Whee! We're playing NASCAR!" Robert yelled as we zipped across the parking lot

I felt like a female version of Indiana Jones as we dodged other shopping carts and bodies on our quest to obtain the coveted Triaminic; finally, we were there. It sat on the shelf in all its glory waiting for some sucker . . .er. . .shopper to find. I grabbed it and happily headed off to the checkout, my quest, I thought complete.

Look at the label, my intution whispered. "Crap!" The Triaminic was for chest congestion; Robert needed nasal decongestant also. I ran back to the pharmacy and spoke with my friend, Kay, working there. 'We don't carry that anymore because of the dopers; they get high off of it, so Triaminic no longer makes it."

Robert erupted into a fit of coughing as we walked away. My baby suffers because some idiot is looking for a cheap thrill, I fumed as I walked out of the store. I tried the local Walgreens and HEB, same story. That only left the pharmacy near my house. I looked at my watch. The pharmacy was all the way across town, it closed at 6, and it was now 5:45, with the rush hour traffic in full swing.

I still don't know how I did it, perhaps like the song, Jesus [took] the Wheel.

I took side streets and arrived at the pharmacy with three minutes to spare. "Stay in the Jimmy," I told the boys as slammed the truck into park and leaped out. For what I hoped was the last time that day, raced across a scorching parking lot. With unbelievable agility (for me) I hurdled the waist high brick wall that divided the pharmacy from the parking lot, and ran inside the cool dark building. (About time these long legs of mine decided to work.) They had the generic form of the Triaminic I had been looking for. If only I had followed my intuition, I wouldn't have been ready to collapse when I got home.

Friday, June 02, 2006


Sometimes I over-extend myself, mentally and physically, and don't realize it until it's too late. The kids have finally recovered from strep and ear infections, but I'm a mess.

While the toddler was sick, I got a total of twenty-four hours of sleep the whole week. During that time, I found out Barney and Bob the Builder videos could be an effective interrogation tool for the police. Just lock the suspect in a room with either one of the vidoes, play it over and over for several hours, and by golly he/she will talk; either that of go totally insane. I watched Barney so much in that one week I could say the character's lines right along with them. When I told John goodbye one morning, I almost sang "I love you, you love me. . ."

Robert also loves the crooners, singers like Rosemary Clooney; he especially likes a song she sings entitled Hey Mambo. We listened to that one song over and over.

I became a night owl that week, staying up all night with a fussy toddler and shuffling through the next day like a mindless zombie. The third morning of our plague, I stood in the laundry room, tiredly shoveling a load of linens into the dryer. I pressed the start button, and. . .nothing. I pressed it again. . .nothing. What in the hairy heck is going on? The door is closed, the lint trap in, why isn't it running? I wondered. And what was that quiet humming noise. Finally it hit me like a ton of bricks. There was nothing wrong with the dryer, I had already turned it on, that's why the button wouldn't work. Duh!

One night that week, I felt a sharp jab in my ribs as I slept peacefully in my bed. "Stop it." John hissed in my ear.

"Stop what?" There'd better be a darned good reason why he's poking me, as in the house is on fire.


"Singing?" I stifled a yawn. "I wasn't singing."

"Yes you were. You were singing some insane Barney song. You know what?" he snorted, "You sound better when you sing in your sleep."

Smart a** , I thought.

Ah well. It's a glorious day today, and I plan to relax and celebrate it to the fullest. I need the break.

Have a great weekend!

Have you ever drank chocolate soy milk? I tried it earlier this week, and it's actually pretty good. Word to the wise though. . .if you ever spill any on your clothing, treat immediately with a stain lifter for clothing and wash. I learned that the hard way. Some dummy (me) didn't put the lid on the carton correctly, and when I shook it, soy milk went every where; all over my hair, face, clothes. It looked like a chocolate factory exploded in the kitchen.Wouldn't you know I was wearing white. I threw the shirt in the washing machine immediately, not bothering to pretreat, and the shirt is ruined.

Looking for a great free way to learn basic and advanced html. Webtech University offers free online lessons. Here's the address in case your interested.

Funny, I never imagined myself as this. What are you?

You Were a Cat

You are an independent person who inspires others with your dreams.
A calm protector, you will fight when you need to.