Google+ Followers

Friday, February 26, 2010

Embrace The Journey

I worked for a doctor for 9 years. I had a good friend that also worked for a doctor. One of our favorite past times was re-telling our office stories. The stories where old people vividly described to us their bladder problems, their colon problems and every other type of problem you can imagine. I actually had a 90 year old man come in the office on the day we were closed (I was doing insurance stuff) and begin to describe in detail why the doctor needed to give him a stronger sample of a certain little blue pill because things just didn't get worked up enough with the ones he gave him!!!! 90 years old!!!!! I used to tell my husband, when I came to the place that my world revolved around my colon or any other intestinal area, please just shoot me. Apparently he wasn't listening to that request because I'd be one dead Indian if he had. Like I said before, getting old certainly does suck in many if not most ways. A couple of years ago I stumbled upon a book titled "How Not To Look Old" by Charla Krupp. I love that book!!! So for all of my 40 something girlfriends that's what they get for their birthday.... A book on how not to look old. Probably the saddest part about it is everyone of them has been tickled pink to get it. Who would have thought? This month was my birthday and last weekend one of my friends dropped by the house to give me my present. I opened the sack to find.... deep breath.... a container of Progesterone Cream. She absolutely swears by it! She says it helps her moods, it helps her attitude and several other things that will go unmentioned. I was tickled pink!!! Anything that claims to help my mood or attitude sounds like a good deal to me. Of course the homemade Cinnamon rolls she tucked into the bottom of the sack help my mood too until they start showing up with an attitude on my thighs. This week I scrapbooked with some friends at church. Scrapbooking is such a messy hobby and it's more fun to do it in the group. We were having a great time swapping pregnancy stories, talking about our kids, and then we came to... Our female problems. Good Lord!! You get a bunch of women telling each other the horrors of what happens to your body when things start changing and there is not end to the conversation. Well, that is until someones husband quietly walks into the room as yours truly happens to be the one sharing my lasted system failure. When I looked up and saw him standing there with a great big grin on his face I wanted to hide under the table. His face totally lit up at my reaction and he took off bragging about how great his system worked.... almost too well. It would have been hysterical if it hadn't been so humiliating. So this morning, driving to work I was thinking about the book, the cream and the conversation and to my horror I thought... OMG!!!! I'm there! I'm actually where I never wanted to be. The only comforting thing about being here is all of my friends are here too, so it's not like I'm alone, but still. We all started out on our journey with young kids who are now out on their own.The next leg of the journey may not have the sense of awe the first half had, but as long as we're in it together we'll certainly make it entertaining.... Even if it is at each others expense.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Another Place And Time

Another place and time.....
created just for me
Another dimension.......
to my diminishing reality
A chance to reacquaint myself.....
with who I am today
A distant vague reminder.......
of the things I do and say
A second chance to capture.....
The fragrance of my mind
The voice so gently calling......
A voice I hear as mine
An ever present whisper.....
Of decisions of the past
And all the links and impact.....
Eternity shall last
Forever in the spirit.....
Beyond this place and time
The truest sense of wonderment.....
Forever in my eyes
With the highest admiration.....
Of who I am and why
I seek with earnest fervor.....
Till all doubt and fear subside

Broken People

One of my favorite authors is Beth Moore. I've done several of her bible studies and few people can break things down to real life like she can. She is animated and hysterically funny because she is so female. A friend sent me a text yesterday saying she had just started her new book titled "So Long Insecurity, You've Been A Bad Friend". I don't typically consider myself insecure, or let me say any more insecure than most woman. But let's face it, women deal with a lot of stuff. Some of the stuff comes from our childhood, some of it comes from being a woman. Some women cover their stuff up with arrogance and pride, while others cover their stuff up with shyness and impenetrable walls they've built around them. Some of us boldly display our stuff right out there in the open, others hide it deep inside, and others pretend that they don't even have stuff or had it and have totally overcame it. Yep, we've all got our stuff and we've all got our ways of dealing with the stuff we got. I downloaded the book onto my blackberry and I'm only on like the 2nd or 3rd chapter, but I highly recommend it to every woman, I can just tell it's going to hit the nail on the head and help me where I hurt. I'm not paralyzed with insecurity, but after reading a couple of chapters I know that I have enough that it hinders me from being the person God made me to be. I'd like a little help getting past my stuff so that I can get on to the next thing he has for me. I'm certainly not going to hesitate to reach out for help in being a better woman, wife, mother or christian. After all a big part of my personality is to fix things (usually things that I myself have broken or caused to be broken), some times I feel like I should be able to fix other people but the truth of the matter is I have to fix myself before I can help someone else. I've said this before, we are all broken people being put back together by a loving God.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

A Guide Of Where Not To Go In China

My Daughter and her friend had signed up for a mainland China tour. The fact that they were the only two who had signed up for it should have been a clue. From the pier they took a bus to a train station, when they got to the border they had to go through immigration - that just wasn't much fun! Since they came in on a Naval ship they did not get a passport stamp in Hong Kong, so immigration were like "how did you get here???", their tour guide was Chinese so he could explain everything and got them through. The first place they stopped was Shenzhen, China to a park that had mangrove trees. While the tour guide was talking about the trees, a group of people started gathering around the group looking at the girls really strange. They were talking to the guide in Chinese. The guide explained to the girls that they were a poor farming family that had come to the city for the Chinese New Year and the girls were the first white people that they had ever seen. My daughter and her friend were completely amazed by their reaction. The children that were with them, were looking at the girls with their mouths open and when they were leaving they would come up to them and poke them and touch them. It was a very unusual experience. The next stop was a museum. This museum had the famous terracotta warriors and horses. My daughter got to touch what they call the "8th wonder of the world" and after a good scolding in Chinese she realized that was a BIG no no. From the museum they went to mall where they could look around for a couple of hours and then meet up later with the group to go back to Hong Kong. Well... they called it a "mall" but my daughter described it as "scary". It was a 8-10 story building with no heat. Apparently there isn't heal in Hong Kong or China except for the really nice hotels. People just wore gloves and coats inside. Anyway the the mall had teeny tiny (No bigger than your bathroom) shops just one right after the other. The shops all sold the exact same stuff, t-shirts, purses, belts, watches none of which had any quality. The owners of the shops sat outside their store and tried to get them to come in so they were constantly bombarded. There were a lot of beggars there that followed them for hours because they had nothing better to do. Even after the girls gave them money they continued to follow them around. This mall was NOT in a touristy area and the girls became increasingly more uncomfortable as they were they only Americans around and everyone spoke only Chinese. Because they were on a group visa they couldn't go back, they had to wait for the entire group. My daughter describes it like the Tom Hanks character in Big, where he goes to the city and is in this crappy hotel and he is so scared he just curls up in a ball and cries. She said that is exactly what she felt like. Coming back into Hong Kong proved to be more of a challenge than leaving. They got stuck again in immigration and both girls were taken back into the interrogation room. There were together so she says it wasn't too bad but from a Mother's perspective, and after seeing the movie Broke Down Palace, I'm glad I didn't know about it until after the fact. They asked them questions... Where they were from.... What ship were they on.... How long were they going to be in Hong Kong. The girls really thought they were not going to be allowed to go back through. Her words exactly are "I'll never go back - EVER". The entire time she was there she said she felt like there was a dark cloud over them, like it was evil. She said she couldn't really describe it and maybe it's because it's communist, but it seemed like a very sad country.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Freezing in Hong Kong

I got an email from my Daughter today about her experience in Hong Kong. Apparently she wasn't as thrilled with it as she was her last couple of ports as she is incredibly homesick and tired and just ready to be back in the good ole USA!!! When they pulled into Hong Kong they pulled in with the entire battle group, and had to anchor out in the harbor. In order to get off the ship, they literally had to climb down and get into a little boat that would take them to the pier. The little boats were called liberty boats and they were basically Chinese water taxis. The boats were pretty small (about 60 passengers) and really nasty because the drivers lived on them. They would cook on little hot plates and it would make the boat stink to high heaven. The combination of the smell and huge swells made a lot of the crew sea sick including my daughter. It was a 30 minute ride to the pier. The Navy set up a building on Fenwick Pier and that is where the liberty boats dropped them off. From the pier they took a taxi or met up for tours. The weather was freezing cold. Since most on the ship were not prepared for cold weather the first thing my daughter and some friends did was go to a mall to purchase warm clothes. From there they went to Outback Steak House for American food which she described as wonderful, then to a couple of pubs and back to the ship.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

The Edge of Silence

Standing on the edge of silence
Knowing that I don't belong
Wanting more than any longing
To hear your voice...
To hear our song
Waiting for the clouds to lighten
Waiting for the storm to pass
Hoping all the fears of losing
Something far beyond my grasp
Are nothing more than dreams that torment
Pierce my heart and scar my mind
Of all that lies ahead tomorrow
And all I wish was left behind
Regardless of the cost or reason
Regardless of the truth I know
Whenever your arms are tight around me
Your love does penetrate my soul
And ever shall I hold to memory
Your touch, your smile, your warmth, your smell
And forevermore be captivated
By this that I shall never tell

Friday, February 19, 2010

Less Is Sometimes More

I know it's a fast paced world and the mind set has changed over the last several years. All of society seems to make me believe I need more.... more fries with that Burger, a larger drink with those fries, more things for my house, more electronics to run my television sets, and stereos, computers... But in some cases there are just some things I can't get enough of. Starbucks White Chocolate Mocha for example.... Coney Islander.... Shoes (well we'll leave that one out of this example)... The things that I truly enjoy and can never get enough of... I also never want to take them for granted. So instead of having a White Chocolate Mocha every day before work, I limit it to once a week as a reward. Having that light at the end of my tunnel makes the tunnel not so dark. I don't live in Tulsa anymore but if I did, I would have to do the same thing with Coney Islander. There are just some things in life that are so special to me I don't ever want them to stop being special so I have to limit myself. Not for lack of desire, not for lack of need and not for lack of access, but purely for the sake of keeping that which is special, special. Because more isn't always better and truly where some things are concerned less is sometimes more..... much more.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

The Finer Things In Life

I'm a texting addict! I would much rather text a 2 hour conversation than have a 5 minute conversation on the phone. I think the real reason I like to text is because I can take additional time to come up with quick witted responses (if they were really quick witted I wouldn't have to take additional time, huh). I've had a Blackberry Pearl for a little over a year. I haven't had any problems with it until the last few weeks. Sometimes the tracking ball would just freeze up... Oh I hate that. I got online and found a site that showed you how to take it apart and clean it which seemed like a good idea to me. Amazingly enough I took it apart, cleaned it and got it back together again with no harm done. Of course, what I did didn't help it either, but at least is wasn't hopelessly broken like some things I have dismantled. I took the phone into the store and they replaced the thingy that seems to make it work. That is until Monday when out of the blue the ball thingy just wouldn't press down. I could move the ball wherever I wanted but when I went to select it just wouldn't do it. I was in the middle of a life changing text so I grabbed my pen and pushed as hard as I could. After a few tries it finally selected but every time I sent a text I had to use a pen and brute force. I knew that this just wouldn't work because how was I going to text and drive at the same time.... Not that I do that, but let's say I was driving by a possible murder scene in someplace like... Eureka Springs and was trying to save the person being beaten to death.... In a case like that I would most certainly break all texting rules and text while chasing the hoodlums. So, as you can see it was important to get my phone fixed. I went to the phone store on my lunch hour. A bright, well dressed young man came up to me all chipper and professional and asked me what I needed. I explained my problem to him and the inconvenience of having to use a pen to push the ball thingy down. When I finished talking he just stood there looking from me to the phone. He kind of acted like I was speaking French or something. Finally I asked him what was wrong. He looked at me, then looked back at the phone and said.... "Nothing, I'm just trying to figure out why you ever thought it was a good idea to use a pen to force the tracking ball down." Well! I didn't see that coming, especially in the "tone" that he delivered it in. He disappeared to the back and eventually came back to explain the problem. Apparently, gunk such as "make-up and stuff" can get trapped under the "thingy" and when I pressed it with the pen it broke the little sensor which was now not sensitive (although I was getting more sensitive by the second). He then began to rattle off my options all of which sounded expensive and I continued to stare at him like I did when my math teacher tried to explain algebra. He ended his little speech with a question mark and wanted to know which option I wanted to take. He asked me "Have I completely lost you?" to which I happily replied "Oh yeah". I pointed to a pretty little purple phone and told him I wanted to do whatever I needed to do to take that home. Lucky for me he turned me over to a sales girl who juggled my account around to allow me to carry that pretty little purple phone out of the store. I spent over an hour in the store that day and have been back every day since trying to get my plan and my phone working as it should. Of course when my husband gets the cell phone bill my marriage may not be working as it should, and he may suggest I take my pretty little phone and visit a counselor. He totally won't understand that I did it for the good of society and as a crime fighting citizen it is my duty to make sure I have all of the the equipment I need. Men!! Sometimes they just don't understand the finer things in life.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Someone Else's Shoes

I hate to be a big whine bag, but hey, it's my blog and I'll whine if I want to. I am one month, two weeks and two days past my fall. I sit here with a headache, barely able to move my neck and even after sleeping for 14 hours could most certainly go right back to bed and stay there all day. I am thankful however that yesterday was the first day in a couple of weeks that I needed to go to bed at 5:05 in the evening. I willed myself to sit upright in my chair in front of my computer until 5. I walked in my front door practically stripping before I got to the kitchen. After throwing the pillows to the floor and pulling back the comforter, I literally fell in bed. My pillows never felt so good! To say I'm exhausted today is an understatement. I start physical therapy today and I am hoping that will help give me some range of motion back in my neck and shoulders. Who knows if I'm lucky it might even help my headaches (which aren't nearly as bad as they were). I've had a good attitude about this whole thing, but to be honest with you it's starting to wear on my nerves. When people ask me how I'm doing I'm quick to tell them much better. If my husband is standing nearby he kind of rolls his eyes and shakes his head like I've lost my peripheral vision and can't see what he's doing. He's been very protective of me which I appreciate because I'd be pushing the envelope a lot harder if I thought he'd let me get away with it. When I start to open my mouth I never know if my brain is going to kick in or not (I'm mean more so than usual before the fall). I'm still getting used to the look on peoples face as I stop mid-sentence to either remember what I'm talking about or searching frantically for the right word. The viewpoint from my end is kind of humorous because everyone has the same expression... Eyebrows raised, they kind of lean forward like what I'm fixing to say is extremely important and then there is just dead silence as the anticipation itself makes me even more bumfusseled. I find myself shying away from social activities where I'm not 100% comfortable. I have been missing break recently because I just don't follow conversations easily and God forbid if I try to say something and get all locked up. It's easier just to keep to myself than to have to explain my behavior. I'm at the point in work where I'm more focused but less sure of what's been going on for the last month. I'm terribly afraid that I have or I will let something slip by me. I keep reassuring myself that there probably isn't anything that I can screw up past the point of being fixed, but then I'm usually the exception to the rule with screw ups. After talking to several people who've experience similar injuries, I'm looking at only a few more weeks or a few more months of healing before things return to normal.... (or at least normal for me). The one thing I've learned is I need more patience with older people who suffer from memory problems. You truly don't know how lost they must feel until you've walked a few steps in their shoes. As for me, I'm ready to be back in my own shoes... preferably high heel pumps... very loud.... very gaudy... cause that's they way I like em.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Stopping To Smell The Flowers in Thailand

Last week I got another adventure email from my little Sailor girl. They had recently been to Thailand where she described a magical experience. The ship pulled into Thailand in the early afternoon. Several charter buses were waiting for the sailors on the pier. The buses were provided to shuttle the sailors back and forth from the ship to the city. The bus ride took about 45 minutes. They arrived at the Hard Rock Hotel and loaded off the bus. Immediately as they walked to the Hard Rock Cafe' there were people selling souvenir type stuff. They would obnoxiously get in their face and ask if they wanted to buy. As she and her friend walked someone tried to put sunglasses on them but they shooed them away. Then a lady put something else in front of her but my sailor refused to make eye contact and shooed her away. She kept walking trying to avoid eye contact with the vendors hoping they would leave her alone. Suddenly she heard her friend call her name "Come look!". There stood a lady holding a Lemur. She wanted them to hold it and take pictures. My Sailor is a real sucker for any type of animal so she was hooked. She said it was so cute and of course she got pictures. Finally they made it through the crowd to the Hard Rock Cafe'. They ate out on the balcony and my Sailor was sitting with her arm on the ledge. She felt something prick her and when she reached to scratch her arm she felt something. She looked down only to see a GIANT cockroach the size of her hand. When she let out a yelp it scurried across the ledge, it was so large that you could actually hear it's footsteps. Not a very appetizing sight right before dinner. After dinner they headed back to the ship because they both had duty the next day. On the 3rd day they checked into their hotel. They got there in the morning hoping to get an early start. Their rooms at the hotel weren't available so the hotel upgraded them for free so they could check in early. Her room had a full kitchen, a washer and dryer, living room, bedroom, bathroom, 3 TVs, and 2 balconies all for $90.00 a night!!! The hotel provided golf carts with drivers that would take them around for free. They went to a mall to shop for clothes but found that the clothes fit funny because typically Asians are very small. After the mall they went back to the hotel to the pool which was located on the roof. From the pool they got ready for dinner at a restaurant a few blocks from the hotel. It was Thai food which is a mixture between Chinese and Japanese. It was the hottest food my sailor had ever had, but very good. After dinner they went back to the hotel that had two bars. One was called the -5 bar and one was called the Bed. The Icebar was very cool... literally! Everything was made out of ice, even the glasses they served your drinks in. They had to put on fur trimmed parkas and gloves to stay inside. It was literally freezing. They had ice sculptures and benches and bar stools made out of ice. They could only stay in for 20-30 minutes before they started freezing. After the Ice Bar they went to the bar called the Bed. The bed was full of beds with pillow. They took their shoes off and climbed on top of the bed where they were brought a tray with drinks. There were go go dancers there and it was very entertaining. When they left the Bed bar they decided it was time for bed. My Sailor asked the front desk if they had a spa because she wanted a massage. The front desk told her they did not have a spa but they would send someone to her room anytime of day or night for a massage. At 1 am she called down to the front desk and asked for a massage and 20 minutes later a lady came up to her room. Thai massages are REALLY rough. Not only do they rub you with oil but they also twist and pull you and stand on you. Every time my Sailor yelped in pain the lady laughed. My Sailor stuck it out thinking it would eventually get better but it didn't. Needless to say she felt like she had been beat up by the time the massage was over. She said she needed a massage after the massage. The next day they went to the Hard Rock Cafe' for lunch and waited for their tour. They had scheduled an elephant tour which was about 20 minutes away. When they got off the bus they headed towards the elephants. They had a stand where they could purchase huge bunches of bananas to feed to your elephant. When they got to the elephants they were ready to go. They had little chairs strapped to their backs (2 seater). The guides sat on their necks without any straps or anything. My Sailors tour guide was a little old Thai man who spoke very little English. When they started moving he turned around and grabbed my Sailors feet. It startled her because she didn't know what he was doing. He was actually removing her sandals so she could feel the elephants back. As she felt the elephants prickly hair she decided barefoot was they only way to go so that's how she stayed for the rest of the day. They came to a river where there was a photographer waiting to take their pictures. The photographer picked two pink hibiscus flowers and their elephant walked over to him took them from him and gave them to the girls. Once out of the river they started their journey. They walked through the rest of the village which was a farm. There were roosters, ox and tons of dogs. They went by several houses, but they didn't look like houses, they looked more like little shacks or sheds. The girls just couldn't imagine someone living in those conditions. Past the houses they crossed the street and headed to more jungle. There was a path cleared off for the elephants, but on either side all you could see was thick jungle. The jungle was very thick, overgrown with vines, bamboo, trees and grass, you would never be able to walk through the jungle by foot. The elephants were funny, each with their own personality. Most of them were very well behaved, but some had a mind of their own and their own agenda. Those were the ones that would take off on their own path, stop and eat tress or grass. One of them carried a huge branch in it's trunk for a couple of miles like a dog with a chew toy. My Sailor's elephant was a good girl, a real sweetie. She was 40 years old and her name was Cuimcal (pronounced Coom Cale). Along the way there were big trough filled with water. They elephants the trough and filled up their trucks then sprayed it on their bellies. Guess that's the was they cool down. On the way back to the village my sailor gave her camera to the guide and asked to him to take several shots of them on the elephant. She said it was crazy how balanced he was just sitting there on the elephants neck. There were flowers and bushes everywhere. They came upon a bush that was probably 20 feet tall and covered with purple flowers. Their elephant headed to the bush. When she got there she stopped and began to smell the flowers with her truck. My sailor was totally in love. As they headed back the elephant got tired, just not as motivated as she once was. The guide gave her one of the bunches of bananas they bought. She just stick her trunk up to him and would grab them then she would carry on with her journey, but a few miles later, she needed a little more motivation provided by another bunch of bananas. My sailor asked if she could feed her but because she couldn't reach her she had to toss the bananas to her. Unfortunately she missed the trunk and the bananas fell on the ground. Cuimcale felt around on the ground until she found them and from then on she was a happy little camper. When they got off of the elephant my Sailor wanted to bet her and tell her goodbye. She got down and petted her on the truck. The elephant looked her straight in the eyes as if to say thank you. After that it was hard to say goodbye. One thing that we all can learn from Cuimcale is no matter who you are, or where you are it's always a good idea to stop a minute to smell the flowers cause you may not get the chance to do it again.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Welcome To My Dark Side

This weekend was my 47th birthday. I'm not going to even try to pretend getting older is rewarding or any of the crap I've heard other people say. I pretty much think it sucks great big green apples but what can you do about it. The only thing I know to do is to fight tooth and toenail looking and acting my age. I'm not going down without a fight! Two things happened this weekend that really amused me. The first one is I had two different friends from completely different areas of my life send me a text that said "Okay Jac, your blogs are scaring me". I didn't think much about getting the first text but when I got the second one I just had to chuckle. It is true that most of my poetry is and always has been written out of some kind of pain and tends to be very dark. The funny thing about that is I don't usually plan that stuff. Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night, go the computer and it just comes out. A lot of time (not all of the time) I have no ideal where it's coming from or where it's going. When I'm depressed or just going through some life transition, the way I cope is to write; for me it's therapy. I was talking to a friend this weekend about the blogs and I told her if you didn't know me you might think I'm a really dark person that leans on the crazy side. The people who know me may say I'm unusual (I believe some use the term unique) but certainly not crazy. I know of many women at this stage in their life that are going through the very same emotional transitions that I am... They just don't blog about it. I think it's important to talk about the things we are going through because let's face it, everybody has something they are dealing with. If we could be real with each other we could bring a lot of comfort to hurting people who think they are the only ones struggling with whatever "their stuff" may be. My personal opinion is that pride keeps us from being real, not only with others but also with ourselves. Let's face it, we want others to think that we have it more together than we really do. We don't like it when people see our vulnerable places because if at all possible it's nice to feel a little superior to others and in order to do that we have to keep a lot of things hidden. If you know me very well, you know that I keep very little, if anything hidden. In fact I bet some think I should keep more hidden then I do. I guess I don't have much of a need to feel superior to others, in fact the thought of being placed on a pedestal makes me extremely uncomfortable! I know without a doubt that I will never live up to any ones expectations of me and when I fall (and I do fall) I want as few eyes on me as possible. So if you're wondering, yes I have a dark side but my dark side isn't as dark as it may seem and I'm more than willing to shine a light inside so you can see my darkness. I figured out a long time ago that things have more control over you when they are allowed to stay in the dark. Shining a light on your dark side can make things a lot less scary, at least for me. The second amusing thing that happened is the two friends that sent me text about my blogs (they don't know each other) got me the exact same present. They each got me a little plague that says "Pretending to be a normal person day after day is exhausting". I think that is a hysterical saying, so much in fact that a couple of years ago I bought a large framed painting that has exactly the same saying and I have it hanging over my desk at work. Now I don't care who you are, that's funny. Being normal, typical or usual is WAY over rated!!!! I am certainly not ashamed that I do like to be my own person, create my own style and live in my own reality and it's obvious that my friends know that about me too. The one thing I do know without a fact is I'm okay. Yes I have my struggles and I've cried some tears, but I cry them out loud so maybe someone else can see they aren't alone. It's perfectly normal to feel like you are going insane sometimes. In my view it's just part of being a woman, a Mother, a wife and a friend. So if you feel like crying, cry. in fact I invite you over to the dark side to cry with me and when we're done crying we'll pull out our compacts, put on our lipstick and have a good laugh, cause that's what real people do.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

The Perfect Affair

Today Is my birthday and yesterday my husband gave me a day to grant my every wish.... well within reason. This weekend they are having Affair Of The Heart in the City. I had planned on going with a friend but our plans were changed. After dropping my youngest off to spend the day with his brother we headed to the fair grounds, me wearing my 5 inch boots at my husband's request. I actually wore them because I was convinced that he wouldn't want to look around inside all of the building and I figured our little outing there would be a very short one. Wrong!!! We made it to 5 of the 7 buildings and funny enough he made the first purchase. How funny is that? We spotted some pellet filled heating pads and he picked up one for each of us. Other than that we mainly just walked around and looked at things. The Affair Of The Heart is a girly girls world. There is girl stuff, glitter, and bling everywhere you turn. I saw a sign that read "Some girls are born with glitter in their veins"... That pretty much describes me to a T. If I stopped and spent some time in one booth he would quietly, but happily stand to the side until I was finished. When I finally confessed that I could not take one more step in my 5 inch boots, we called the boys and they met us at PF Chang's. We had a wonderful dinner and enjoyed visiting with our kids. It was a long busy day but it was a good day, and as girl birthdays go the Affair Of The Heart was the perfect affair to attend.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

The Perfect Imperfect Valentine

On Facebook this week everyone was posting sweet notes about their Valentine. If I didn't know better I'd think that I was the only imperfect Valentine and I was the only one who had a imperfect Valentine. Is that unromantic to admit? My Valentine and I met 29 years ago this coming June 3rd. We've been married for 28 years. We can still tell you what the other had on the first time we saw each other. He's says he fell in love at first sight, I say I grew in love. He likes to act that somehow he loves me more because he fell in love and I like to act that my growing in love is a more substantial claim. We both grin when we have that debate. We seldom if ever fuss or fight and if either of us raises their voice it will always be me. Unlike 99% of the couples we know, we work really well together. We have remodeled kitchens, we have wallpapered houses, we have built tree houses and porches all without one cross word or one stubborn fight. He still makes me laugh, just not as often as he used to because.... let's face it after 28 years he needs some new material. He tells me I'm pretty and he always denies I need to go on a diet. I have a laundry list of things I'd like to change about him, but that list is tucked away deep into my drawer because I've accepted the fact that he is who he is and if I can just tweak his wardrobe a little that's good enough for me. After 28 years, he has never ever told me a single thing he doesn't like about me. When we were first married, I would paint my nails at the table while he finished eating. That's probably the only time he asked me not to do something, because the smell made his sick. In 28 years, that's the only thing he's complained about. Amazing!!!!! Trust me, I know I do plenty of things to get on his nerves but he just grins and bears it like a pro. Saying that he is the love of my life and the most perfect man in the world sounds very, very, Valentinish, but a little unrealistic. For both of us I think we can proudly claim that we are the most perfect of imperfect Valentine's that ever loved and lived happily ever after.

Friday, February 12, 2010

The Flaws In Me

How do you start over
With nothing in your heart
But emptiness and broken parts
Truly where do you start
How do you recapture
A passion that's young and free
Where does one regain
What is now old history
If memories is all you have
How do you begin anew
Your former self and who you are
Can you possibly combine the two
Or is what's missing gone for good
Never to be seen again
A distant past reminder
That sadly good things end
And what's it like to settle
For only what now remains
And exsist now and forever
With no hope of more to gain
Brokenness leaves it's scars
Some find strength to heal
Others live forever
Without fully being filled
I've seen my dreams crumble
Right before my eyes
I've watched a long process
Of a love that finally dies
I remember once a while ago
When anger consumed my soul
For that which was taken
Something I will never hold
But that was then
This is now
New valleys I must cross
New determination
To further bare this cross
And somehow find a way
To smile to those around
As if all is wonderful
As if true joy abounds
A facade of great magnitude
One that can pass the test
And convince those around me
My soul is true at rest
I will simply fake it
And pray real joy returns
And fire is kindled in my heart
Regardless how undeserved
I'll take the blame forever
Accepting all the loss
I'll live by distant memories
I will count my every cost
Of all that I have sacrificed
All that I have lost
At times things were very good
Perhaps I did not tend my heart
The way a woman should
Still blessings abound in spite of it all
The sadness that I see
Much blessed with a loving husband
despite of the flaws in me

Thursday, February 11, 2010

The Secret

There's a hole in myself that just won't mend
A longing beyond my control
It's captured my soul and pierced my heart
like arrows from a bow
The pain it induces is mixed with joy
in an indescribable way
my emotions are scattered with fear and delight
For something I cannot say
The forbidden is tempting to say the least
and beckons me at will
to scale every wall, face every fear
To surrender all of my guilt
Forever the tide of my heart has been changed
never to be the same
Forevermore I will look to the past
As the beginning of now the end
I'm not the one I once was known
I'm no longer a girl inside
I'm as different now as the morning sun
is from the evening tide
Yet I'll rejoice in what I now know
And hold it close to my heart
As a part of me that was pushed aside
To make room for a brand new start
The knowledge of something so raw and so true
Is rare to say the least
The memory continues to hold in it's hand
The heart that belonged to me
I'll never regret one second of time
I allowed myself to know
There was more to me than what used to be
A secret I'll forever hold.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Borrowed Time

Swirling shades of color
Surround my heart and soul
And captivate my memory
For the one I long to hold
Sounds of sweet surrender
Gently fill the air
The fragrance of the one
With whom my life I share
As precious as this moment is
It's one that shall not last
Except for the taste of his lips on mine
This moment will quickly pass
Tomorrow will bring questions
That I cannot truly know
The direction of my future
The amount of borrowed time
To live in heavenly rapture
For the one that I call mine
Yet will I keep on loving
Though only time will tell
The ending of this love song
Sung so bittersweet
Leaving traces of forever
In the tears that I shall weep

Monday, February 8, 2010

Sweet Sound Of Worship

Yesterday I sat on the pew dressed in jeans and wrapped in a blanket I shared with friends. After being out of church for over 10 days due to electricity, they found some generators and we had Church!!! I hate to sound old fashion, but there was something just sweet about the whole thing. First of all I have missed everybody. It's been cold, icy and it's just not the same without seeing those friendly faces every week. Second of all, church sure has changed since I was a kid. I remember when we used to sing hymns over and over till everybody knew every word of every verse. Now we learn new worship songs all the time. I play keyboard at church and the new worship songs aren't the 3 chord hymns of old. Musically the new worship songs can be very complicated... at least for me. Yesterday we sang some old songs and it felt so good. We had a limited sound system due to the electricity, so the music didn't overpower the voices. There is nothing sweeter than hearing hundreds of voices singing praise to the King of Kings. I can almost picture God bending over, listening to the voices with a great big grin on his face!!! I love that mental picture. I love my church and I love my church family. I'm glad that we are "Keeping things relevant" and reaching out to the media driven young people of today. I do, however, sometimes miss the simple, unrehearsed church of my childhood (sometimes). Yesterday felt good, it felt sweet. Next week I'll be back in church, dressed in my church clothes (adhering strictly to the worship teams color calendar), with no blanket in sight. The screens will have all of the words to the songs on them and I'll be able to feel the beat all the way to my bones. Next Sunday I'll probably imagine God bending over with a grin on his face right before he begins to do the happy dance, because he doesn't care how hip we worship or what clothes we worship in, as long as our worship is directed at him. Next Sunday it will be sweet.... only in a different way.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Proud Momma!

You know when you're raising your children you just do the best and pray God does the rest. As Bill Crosby says, "They don't come with an instruction manuel. My oldest son was a pistol, a fireball of energy. Some days he just totally wore me out with his endless questions about things like what if the sky were green all the time instead of blue, or what if the grass was always blue. These are typical kid questions, but he pretty much wanted an answer. The thing about Seth is he is and always was the best natured little thing. Regardless of how many obstacles life throws at him, he just looks at each and every one like an opportunity to do things in a different way. You'll never know how many times I wish I had that tendency. I'll never forget one time when he was in highschool I came home to find him with his head on the table. With him usually being so upbeat I knew something was wrong. I asked him what was bothering him and he kind of gently sighed and said, "Oh, I'm just trying to figure out how I'm going to have enough money to make it till I get paid". Of course I immediatley offered him money, but to my surprise he turned it down and said "No Mom, it will all work out, it always does". That pretty much sums up how he lives his life. He is living proof that when are totally committed to Christ he will supply all of your needs!!!! Yesterday we got the opportunity to visit with him and see his new house for the first time. We had such a great time with him and all of they guys he hangs out with. They all are a living example that you can be young, stand for the cause of Christ and still have an absolute ball enjoying life. Everytime I'm around them they lift my spirits, give me hope and make this Momma a very proud woman. I may not have given birth to all of them, but I feel like they are all family. I am very blessed to have a Son that is such a blessing to others.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

My Very Best Friend

In my version of Webster’s Dictionary under the phrase “Best Friend” is a picture of my very best friend, Charlotte Webb. No, I’m really not making things up that is really her married name. Charlotte and I met… oh my gosh I really don’t like to think about how many moons ago it was. I was working at a local insurance company and she applied for the job as receptionist. We have been best buds since!! When I still worked there our desks were right next to each other. Every single weekday she would come to work and ask me…. “Jaquetta, what did you do last night?”. When I attempted to skim the details she would stop me in my tracks and back me right up. “What did you have for dinner”, “Now, what made you decide to fix that”, “Where did you get that recipe”? Not one detail of my evening from beginning to end was I allowed to skip over… NOT ONE!!! When we finished with my evening (from beginning to end) we would then start on her evening (from beginning to end). It’s actually quiet amazing that we got any work whatsoever accomplished. On Monday morning the routine was the same but I had to start with Friday evening and describe every event and activity in detail through Sunday evening. After working together for several years I quit my job when I became pregnant with my 3rd and last child. I will never forget the day I told Charlotte I was leaving. She sat facing me, tears rolling down her cheeks and said… “Jaquetta, what will I do without you?” To this day I get teary eyed when I think back on how sad she was that we wouldn’t get to share every single part of our lives together. I remember telling her that we would make an agreement right then and there that our relationship would always be a priority with both of us. I wasn’t leaving town, I just wouldn’t be sitting beside her for 8 hours every day…. It sounded so simple. I had my baby and a couple of years later she began her family and before I knew it time had flown by. Did we keep in touch? Yes, we most certainly have. Do we still share every little detail of our lives? No, sadly we don’t. When Charlotte started her family and I took a very stressful job we suddenly found that it became more and more difficult to find time for an uninterrupted phone call much less the time to share details, exchange recipes and go shopping. In spite of that, we have kept in touch and regardless of whether it’s been weeks or months since we have spoken we pick up exactly where we left off. If you are a guy you probably don’t know how rare that is, but in “Girl World” that is huge. Women tend to drift apart easily (IMO) and when they do their imaginations run wild. I won’t go into details but I would say that most women would agree with me (and of course if they don’t that would make them wrong). Last week little Charlotte turned 41!!!! For the last several years I have always given her a Bible for her birthday. This year I gave her a different kind of Bible, the paperback version of “How Not To Look Old”. She was tickled pink after she found out that I had read it from cover to cover taking notes and passing the book on to all of my girl friends. I’m hoping her teenage daughter will appreciate the fact that I am trying to keep her Mom cool for her. Our lives may be on different paths now, our kids on different levels, but our hearts have always remained tied together with cords of love that cannot be broken by trial or time. That in my book, is the very description of Best Friend. I love you high as the sky Charlotte and always will!!!!

Tender Love,
Jaquetta aka JacJac

Adventures Of A Lifetime Through Another's Eyes

Woke up this morning to an email from my Daughter who is on deployment with the Navy. An email from her is better than Starbucks coffee any day of the week! She was excited to tell me about her latest adventure in Malaysia. After being cramped up on a destroyer for over a month with a bunch of smelly boys she was looking forward to getting on land and stretching her legs. The beds on the ship are sometimes referred to as coffins because they are probably a little smaller than a coffin and just as confining. After a prolonged period of sleeping on a ship the joints start protesting a little and an adjustment from the ship Doc may be necessary. The thing she was looking forward to the most on this liberty was getting a nice room at a 5 star hotel and being able to sleep in a real bed for a change. She said her room was amazing; everything was controlled by a remote control. It came complete with a big tub and a separate shower where the whole ceiling was a shower head and it felt like rain. She and a friend booked a massage and headed through the jungle to the spa. On the path to the spa you could hear monkeys, frogs and birds. She said it was so neat. They had private villas on the path to the spa that were secluded and adorable. Her day of sightseeing got canceled because of "hardcore" rain so she spent the day in the mall with friends and ate American food at the Hard Rock Cafe'. I love hearing about her adventures and her world travel. If I have one regret in my life it would probably be that I didn't take the opportunity to have adventures while I was young before I settled into family life. At 46 I think it would be very fulfilling to look back on things that are once in a lifetime adventures. That's probably why I love her stories; I have the chance to imagine myself walking through jungle paths, eating exotic food and seeing the world through her eyes as if they were my own.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Family, Friends And Thankfulness

Thursday was a cold yucky day! The weatherman was forecasting unprecedented ice and snow. My first thought was “Yeah, right we got record snow for Christmas, I’m not holding my breath that it’s going to be as bad as they predicted”. Boy was I wrong (That’s right honey, yet another admission)!!!! By 2:00 the electric had gone off in the office and they sent everyone home for the day. I’ll have to admit the idea of having a nice quiet afternoon at the house was a real treat… for a while. My husband and Son went to Wal-Mart so we wouldn’t starve to death that evening. They came home with enough chips to sink a battleship, a couple of flash lights, tons of canned stew and cookies (none of these things btw, are on my New Year’s diet). We began the task of rounding up every available candle that was in the house (the place smelled like a French brothel) and prepared to snuggle under until the power came back on. Before it was dark my Son left to spend the night with friends so they could be bored out of their skull together and we grabbed our books and began catching up on our reading. Thank God for cell phones! I got a text from a friend and neighbor inviting us over for a chat with some family so we headed over a couple of blocks to chew the fat with friends in the dark (It was so fun). Friday morning I woke up truly expecting electricity to be at my fingertips… Boy was I wrong! My husband figured he was “tough enough” to take a cold shower… Boy was he wrong! The look on the dogs faces when that ice cold water hit him was priceless!! His screaming made a 5 year old girl sound manly (so funny), but I’ll have to admit that he was wide-eyed when he came downstairs all squeaky clean. The rest of the weekend was spent with family or friends as we brought all of our survival stuff together to suffer through the loss of modern conveniences as one big family. It was a very good weekend! We might not have been basking in the comfort of modern technology and conveniences, but we were basking in the love and laughter of those we love. I’m thinking we should start a new tradition… A tradition that would make us more appreciative of the things we do have and more thankful for the ones we share our lives with. Today is Tuesday and yet again I woke up expecting electricity to be at my fingertips…. Wrong! But you know what, I’m not going to complain cause things could be a lot worse. I have a good life because I surround myself with good people…. It doesn’t get better than that.