Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Hump Day Report & Randoms

I totally need to update the look of my page, but who am I kidding?
I don't even know how.
If I did know how, I sure as hiccups don't have the time to do it.
Ugh. Life... please slow down.


I sure as shootin' forgot about Hungry For a Day's "Go Hungry Day" until it was too late because I suck at life.
I will be signing up with a local "feed the homeless shelter" and doing my part.
I will also go hungry that day and donate to this great cause.
I fully believe in my friends who started this non-profit organization... they have humongo hearts for the hungry and serving those in need!
So, you definitely need to check out the website and do what you can to make this world a better place.
Share the love, people... share. the. love.
Go to http://www.h4ad.com/ - you'll be better for it and someone else will too!


Tonight is our annual "A Very Henny Christmas" party.
I know what you are thinking...
And .. NO.. this has nothing to do with Benny Hinn.
Though, I am all for the breath of God's healing fire on my life.
Not so sure about Benny's breath...
I hope he eats a tic-tac ..or ten.. before he does all that breath blowing.
What was I talking about>>>>>>?????
Oh, yeah! Our "Hen's Night"!
It's tonight and I have HANDS DOWN the BEST white elephant Christmas gift.
I am so pumped about it.
It's going to make a statement for sure.
I cannot wait to show you all what it is!
Tomorrow.. look for pics!


Lake - my dear son. 
I couldn't be more proud of him.
He loves reminding us about Christmas.
He tells me at least 3 times a week, "Christmas is not about Santa. It's really about Jesus' birthday. I think some people just wanna talk about Santa and that makes me sad for Jesus.
He said he wants to make a Birthday Card for Jesus and leave it out on Christmas night. "Do you think He will see it?"
My heart swells when that boy speaks.
I know the Lord has big plans for him.
(Disclaimer: we totally do "Santa" at our house, we just don't make a *big deal* about it.)
When we ask him what he wants for Christmas... he doesn't say big gifts like "an x-box connect" or "trampoline"... he says stuff like "maybe a transformer" and "maybe a car with a remote control" or "a book about space".
So funny.... nothing like me.
I hope he stays this way, so that when he does receive big gifts, he is actually grateful... Instead of expecting the big stuff and never realizing the sacrifice, blood, sweat and tears his parents (err, dad) made to get it for him.


My sister, Robin, is expecting her second child!
Nora Kate will be the big sister to a baby brother, Abbott Jude.... who is due in the spring!
Lake said, "Yay! I will finally have a boy cousin!"
So far, there's Adleigh, Laney, Nora Kate and his sister Lennon.... too many girls if you ask me!
It's also too bad he'll be six years Abbott's junior.
We're all very excited, nonetheless.


I completed my 6.5 relay in Dallas a couple of weeks ago!
I did the 6.5 at a great pace... somewhere between 9 mins and 9 mins 20 seconds average.
I forgot to cut my Runkeeper off so I had to backtrack and average it out.
Either way, it was definitely under a 10 min mile and that was a personal goal for myself... achieved!
As for the race itself, it was 39 degrees and pouring rain most the run.
(Read as: FRICKIN COLD or BRINK OF DEATH)
The run itself was great.
I mean, you can't feel your toes or your hands and your breath is nothing short of needles, but it was a nice run.
I definitely did not do much sweating.
Before the race was miserable...
Waiting in the cold rain with thin short sleeves on.
After the race was worse...
By a country mile.
Walking around with low blood sugar, soaking wet, and literally on the verge of hypothermia.
My body was almost convulsing.
Never again will I do a short distance in that weather.
Just not worth it.
A half marathon or even a whole - consider it done.
So, the next 4.5 weeks are going to be spent running and training for the half marathon on Jan 15th in Baton Rouge!
So pumped!


So, I have big updates on my little Lennon bug!!  
If you are on my Facebook, you probably saw a post about her big brother, Lake, wanting to start praying for her to be healed - so that she would start talking to him because "she's hard to understand".
If that doesn't shatter the stones in your heart, nothing will.
Of course we totally believe God is the same yesterday, today and forever.
Of course we believe He can heal her.
Of course we believe she will be healed.
I hear and read too many stories about people being healed of Down Syndrome to say it cannot happen to her.
However, I do believe that it is going to be God's timing....
Be it here on Earth or in Heaven.
My money is on "here on Earth" and I am 100% more than ok with it being in Heaven.
Frankly, I don't care either way.
I just wanna take time to give the Lord credit where credit is due....
The bottom line is, we've been praying specifically for her speech and communication skills. In the past month, Lennon has really taken a turn for the better in the speech department. Examples:
Putting sounds together... instead of saying "da da da da", she'll say "mama da ba shhh" or "dada ga nana" ...This is HUGE!
She also signs, on a regular basis: Milk, More, All Done, Bird, & Dog.
She uses her words: Mama, Dada, Bubba, Eat, Book, Duck, Put Up (Which is GREAT - using a two word command!), Night Night, & All Done.
I have seen her whisper several times: Baby & Bird.
Other happy stuff she's learning to do:
You can give her almost any command, as in, "Throw this in the trash." or "Go get your shoes." or "Time to brush your teeth." or "Find your milk." and she will do it.
She is great with direction, which means she fully understands what we are saying.
Now, does she do it every time... heck no... she also has a stubborn streak 10 miles wide.
She is an avid "ignore-r" and a professional "lay down and pretend I am too tired to do anything-er".
That makes for a good laugh... I mean, we cannot help but laugh!
She's clever, and she will stiff-arm you in a heartbeat if you try to make her do something she isn't wanting to do.
Bed-time & Bath-time:
Lennon loves a bath.
If you even mention the word in a sentence, she usually goes to the bathroom door and waits.
I have learned to spell it when talking about it in her presence.
As for brushing her teeth, it's one of her favorite things to do.
Strike that, her favorite part is drinking the water out of my hand afterwards to "rinse" her mouth.
Several times this week, I see her leaning with her face on her bedroom door.
She is just patiently waiting for me to open it and put her in her bed.
I can now lay her in her bed, fully awake, and she goes right to sleep!
Score!
Though, I still rock her most the time, just because I love her.


She has just come so far in such a short amount of time.
I know God placed us in the right hands for therapy (shout out to my cousin!) and He put her in the right family.
Her body is a temple for the Lord's mighty work.
And, like the ole children's folk song says, we sing it with faith...
He's still workin' on her.



He's still working on me to make me what I ought to be.
It took Him just a week to make the moon and stars,
The sun and the earth and Jupiter and Mars.
How loving and patient He must be, He's still working on me.

There really ought to be a sign upon the heart,
"Don't judge her yet, there's an unfinished part."
But I'll be perfect just according to His plan
Fashioned by the Master's loving hands.

He's still working on me to make me what I ought to be.
It took Him just a week to make the moon and stars,
The sun and the earth and Jupiter and Mars.
How loving and patient He must be, He's still working on me.

In the mirror of His Word reflections that I see
Make me wonder why He never gave up on me.
He loves me as I am and helps me when I pray
Remember He's the Potter, I'm the clay.


He's still working on me to make me what I ought to be.
It took Him just a week to make the moon and stars,
The sun and the earth and Jupiter and Mars.
How loving and patient He must be, He's still working on me.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Randoms

Celebrate Good Times... Come On!
Tonight is a night of celebration... because I believe we should celebrate every little thing.... because all those little things make up milestones to the big things. Tonight, I celebrate "No Pain, No Gain" (even though, if I am honest, I have no clue what that really means... but, hey, it sounds good when you say it... right?!). And by "celebrate", I mean, "ice the knee". I feel old all of a sudden.
So we didn't have an ice pack... and I was too pooped to make one.
 But in all seriousness... I am super pumped about my longest run (this training round). I am staying around my goal of keeping it under a 10 min mile pace. I am also reaching my goal of "see how many times can you make yourself gag and almost hurl during a run". So far, I am at 8 times. If anyone, besides God, were watching me tonight, they got a good laugh... because, let's face it... a fat girl running and gagging at the same time is pretty funny no matter how you slice it.

Current pace: 5 min 36 sec. / Read: Puke Inducing Speed

It's beginning to smell a lot like Christmas.
So, I sent Charlie on a grocery run - I didn't have to force him, because he knows that we're more likely to have a smaller fortune blown at Wal*Mart if he just bites the bullet and does the shopping himself. Though, through some sort of force and possible but not confirmed blackmail, I was able to score a candle, or two. Two of which have totally gotten me in the holiday spirit. I love this... the smell of a fresh Christmas tree... though no tree is in site.... which means, there are no pine needles to sweep up on a daily basis... and no Tornado Baby to corral away from the tree and all it's glory.



"Why am I covered in feathers?"
I'll tell you what else I love... my brand spanking new homemade by yours truly Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1 midnight premiere t-shirt! Oh yeah. Mama's got skills. You see, I believe it's perfectly fine to become a complete dork once a year. This is my once a year. Myself and 12 other friends all have midnight (12:01am) tickets - and have had for months - to the premiere and you better believe we go all out.  

Even had to make that "feather" stencil myself, since, apparently, Hobby Lobby & Michael's are big on the Twilight Saga.

Stop, Drop, & Roll... will get you no where.
When you hear the alarms sound... you best be running for cover... take your mattress into the hall, pile the kids in the tub, do whatever it takes to stay safe. Tornado Baby is on the move and there is no telling where she might touch down or at what costs the devastation will be. This time, we seemed to have gotten off easy. Then again, if you factor in the length of time it takes for her to wreak havoc, you might fully understand her capabilities. One asked me once, "Is she really as destructive as the pictures you show?" In which I kindly answered, "No, no, no... it's way worse." All I can do is laugh because she is so determined. It's like a game to her. To me... it's like "Ground Hog's Day" (which is such a great movie).

F2: 0.6 minutes devastation time.

F3: 5 minutes devastation time.

Seek and Devour
Girl is on a mission. Everywhere she goes has a purpose: To find the next object that will fit in her mouth. Last week, I changed her diaper.... Beware, this story might be traumatic for those of you who are not parents or pet owners... for parents or pet owners, this story will get a good laugh. Sister had a poo diaper. I took her to her room to change it. I had a friend at the house, who is getting ready to have her first baby soon enough. She hadn't been around or changed many diapers so, naturally, she wanted to watch the master at work. I began the diaper changing process. About halfway the butt cleaning process, I notice something hanging out of her butt... literally her butt hole. I really don't know how else to put that. I take a baby wipe and begin to wipe it, realizing it is indeed lodged in her rear end. So, I take the wipe and grab the object... and pull... and out it comes... and it keeps coming.... about 12-14 inches worth of thread.... at at the end, a huge wad of thread. Plops right on out. Sister found a spool and apparently ate half the thing. Fear not: I have spared you the pictures that were undoubtedly taken. My friend? Oh, she is scarred for life. That is all on that story.

Here, you see her "mission" face. What's that? Something I might like?


A gumball... also good for teething purposes... Cause you know sister had her mouth all over that thing.... and 3 others just like it... every time I turned around.
See baby. See baby eat gumball. Eat baby, eat.
I was trying to take a cute little picture of Lake and you know sister had to steal the spotlight with her crazed antics. Lawd, what am I going to do with that girl. She definitely keeps me on my toes!

 Collie Rides 5 cents
So, I took little miss to my grandma Doris' house this week. I needed to check on the older folks while my mom was out of town with my brother, Chad (who was having his kidney drained in Cleveland, OH - he is doing great by the way!). While at my grandma's, Lennon and I had a great time roaming the land and enjoying a nice fall day. She was totally in her element... Tornado Baby had lots of room to run! She loved every second, and I loved every second of watching her love it.

Creepy Toy #527: Collie Rider... You really never know what you will find at my grandma's.

Baby Mama
Lennon is really loving her dolls these days. Putting them night-night is top priority. She obviously has this 'mother' thing down to an art. Here you see her putting babies in their crib. Notice in the picture below, she has her purse on. There is a bag of some sort or purse type item with this girl most of the time. I am not sure where she is always prepared to go, but give the girl props... she is definitely prepared. You might find her milk cup, or your sock, in her purse at any given time.
"Now, ya'll go to sleep, Mama's gone to work... I'll see you in the morning."
Night Job: Tornado Baby works hard for her money... honey.

 You Can't Tell Her "No"
They said she would have low muscle tone. They said she might not walk as early as "other" kids. What did I say? I said, "You must not know my God."


My Heart in Pictures
Every day, this one steals my heart. His smile, his sweet eyes.... Just when I think I couldn't possible love him anymore. He made good grades again on this report card! So proud! :) He is definitely my creative cat. Always drawing, creating, and thinking about new ways to do things. I just love his mind. He's so smart... and intuitive. Silliness oozes from him. I cannot say enough good things about him and what a terrific big brother he is. Even with my niece, Laney... if she is crying, you can usually hear him whispering, "Hey Laney... hey sweet girl... Cousin Lake is here... don't cry.. I am right here, baby girl. Here I am." Oh my goodness... I could just squeeze him!





I wanna be a billionaire, so freakin' bad.
If I ever find a way to bottle all this joy...


That basically sums up the last few days, or weeks at my house. I haven't blogged in a while, and since I shut down my facebook and twitter, I basically have no choice but to blog ;)

Monday, September 26, 2011

Somebody

You wake up in the morning.
It's a day like any other.
You get lunches packed, kids dressed for school, quickly dump a cup of lukewarm coffee down your throat before you throw on a bra and a cardigan to take the boy to school.
Praying to God no one sees you and that he's not tardied.
On the way back to the house, the radio blaring... because it's the only way you can get through the ride with a child that hates the car seat.
When all of a sudden...
Something, or someone speaks to the very core of your being.
"Let go of everything you ever thought to be a comfortable and normal life.
That was your life.
You now have a new purpose."

It rocks your spirit ...
Because you already knew...
It was your purpose from the very beginning, yet you are just now really seeing it.

You didn't think you were still holding on to that old life... But, you were only lying to yourself... because every now and then you had to open that wound just to look at it, just to remember one last time. But one last time turned into 100 last times.

"There is a reason you are here on this earth. Now is the time to shine."
Suddenly... You are coming alive.
Busting at the seams with something inside ...
Something bigger.
Something greater.
Something that will impact everyone you know and beyond.
But where to begin?
How?
You gotta trust.
You gotta let go.

That's when he enters...
Filling your head with doubt...
With fears of rejection...
Fears of the unknown.
Fear of failure.
"But they will laugh at your feeble attempt."
"Who do you think you are?!"
"Ha! You can't do that!"
"It's a terrible idea."
So you become stale.... Again.
Beat down.
You've already given up.
Just like that.

This is an every day battle in my head, and my heart.
I know I am destined for greatness.
I know I have a solid purpose.
Every rough and difficult road I have taken, He will use as a tool.
The only thing standing in my way is me.
Those negative thoughts have got to go.
The war is over, the battle was won a long time ago.

I have to believe it.
I have to act on it.
What is faith without actions?
I was created for so much more than what I have allowed myself to believe.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Three Cheers for Friends, Fall & Another Fab Year

I haven't been writing much ... it's been so busy around here.
Our therapy schedule changed...
'Tis hard to get in your groove when someone moves your cheese.
It's getting better though.
We're figuring out when to nap and when to eat all over again.
Lennon had a great day in therapy today (score!).
Which makes for a good day all together.
Friends Forever:
(Insert Saved By the Bell quote... check!) Yesterday, was a day to remember! I had a wonderful time with an old roommate from college and her beautiful red-headed baby girl. Such gems! Sophie, her 9 month old daughter, has the greatest hair and the prettiest blue eyes... oh, and that swollen gum smile... it will melt even the stubbornest of hearts! I hadn't seen sweet Kim since probably 1999 (entirely too long!). It's so refreshing to know you can still laugh and talk and pick up right where you left off. Those are the friendships you know will last a lifetime. I am grateful for them.
Fall is Here:
Sigh..... Time to break out the greatest movie of all time, You've Got Mail, and put it on repeat. "Don't you just love New York in the fall?" I am sure it's lovely, though I have never been... at all. Oh but I will keep dreamin' the dream until it becomes reality. I am working on my fall wreath... going to add a few little pretties to it this weekend. Then I will post pics. I bought new soaps for the bathroom from Bath & Body Works: Cinnamon Raisin Cookie, Orchard Leaves, Creamy Pumpkin. I smell my hands all day. I look for reasons to wash them. I also bought a candle, called Autumn. My house smells divine, of acorns and leaves and floral pleasantries. If I could lick & taste the air I would. Alas, for now, I'll just hover close to the flames, careful not to burn a nostril or two. I'm already thinking of Thanksgiving and the grandeur that will be sprayed out before me... my plate is full, my sweet tea runneth over, and my belly growls as visions of pumpkin pies dance in my head.
Birthday Cheer:
I love having birthdays. It's the one day of the year I say, "Forget you and forget you, too" because I want to be celebrated. I know, selfish, right?! We'll just blame it on the "First Born Syndrome". being the oldest of 5 children, one has to be a little selfish every now and then. So for my birthday, this is what I want. A tattoo. Yep. Two little birdies for my two littles on my left wrist. I also want a fabulously rich-in-carbs dinner.... with close friends ....and loads of giggly chatter... and music and laughter... outside, by a crackling fire, with a glass of wine in hand. Is that too much to ask for? I think not. So get to it... Hurry and plan me something fabulous!
We are leaving for New Orleans (a little husband and wife getaway) next Friday, complements of Charlie's company for all his hard work. The littles will stay with a very dear and darling friend. Not sure what I would do without her... and my sister the next night... Love my family!
Not sure what we will be doing for the holidays this year, but I am sure it will involve a trip to South Louisiana, Cajun Christmas food, and lots of cousins.
Tell me... What are your plans?

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

A Letter to Lake

Dear Lake,
I bet you didn't know that I sneak in your room most every night, just to get a peek at your sweet face.
I sometimes want to wake you up and hold you just one last time before I go to sleep.
But, you look so peaceful, I just let you rest.
I touch your sweet face or your arm just to make sure you are warm enough or cool enough.
While I lay in my bed every night, I think of everything you said that day. How you were so excited to tell me who chased who on the playground, about the new color you learned to read today.
I laugh to myself just thinking of you spelling sentences and making me guess what it says.
I know I am distracted often with your precious little sister.
But, I want you to know you are always on my heart and my mind.
I look forward to our Mommy and Lake dates.
We don't get them nearly enough.
Your daddy and I just look at you and smile all the time.
We're just so proud of the little man you are becoming.
You have big dreams...
You want to be an astronaut, the owner of a construction company, and a soccer coach.
I have no doubt whatsoever, you just might do it all.
You are so smart and driven to learn.
You are incredibly kind and thoughtful.
You have such a keen sense of humor...
You are a true joy to be around.
The love and understanding you have for your sister and her needs amazes me.
I believe wholeheartedly the Lord hand-picked you out of all the boys in the world to be her big "bubba". She is so so so blessed to be a part of your life.
You please the Lord.
When the Lord looks at you, I know He is saying, "Well done."
I love that you are already excited to be a daddy one day.
But I am more excited that you are not in a rush to grow up.
It makes me giddy that you know what Christmas is really about and that you want to give to those less fortunate than you at that time.
I pray you always have a heart for those in need.
I love you, my sweet boy.
I love you more than breathing.
Forever,
Mommy

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The Sand vs The Beach

I hate the sand... But I love the beach.

I have had several people tell me I need to read "A Million Miles in a Thousand Years".
While I totally agree, I should read that book, I feel, on certain days, I have come a million miles in 1 year.
The journey has taken me through wind, fire, and a crap load of rough terrain.
I have fought the meanest of honey badgers, and snakes have nipped at my ankles on a daily basis.
Now, you must understand, I didn't start out with a "great faith".
I started out with a "base faith".
What I mean is, I started out with a general basis of what faith is.
Believe in what you don't "see". I understood that.
I thought if I believed hard enough, I couldn't get burned.
I have learned, having faith doesn't mean you won't get burned.
It just means, that "when" you get burned, you know the fire is only going to make you better.
It's burning away all that trash you have allowed in.
It means, all the lies you were told are now dead and meaningless.
I didn't ask for this journey. I never would have; but it's mine now.
And I plan to "own" it... work it like a runway.
I plan to teach her to own it too... to work it like a runway.
Work those genes.... and rock 'em with a great pair of cowgirl boots.
I want to talk about the journey....
I remember the weather on the day I was married.
It rained.
I remember the weather on the day Lake was born.
It snowed.
On the day Lennon was born....
I couldn't tell you darn thing about the weather.
Because I was blind.
In the beginning.... There was a lot of doubt.
In the doubt, there was a still strong voice of hope.
I knew enough, to take that hope and cling to it for dear life.
Nearly strangling it to death.
In the beginning, there was a moment where I just wanted to walk away.
Yeah. I did. Most moms wouldn't admit it... but I didn't know how I was going to do it.
How was I... this girl who never even graduated college, going to raise a child with special needs?
Me... who had never a day in her life been prepared for something like this.
So, out of complete desperation, I got on my knees, right there in the hospital bed.
Now this was not an easy task, mind you... I had just had a c-section.
And those gowns open from the back.
So I raised the foot of the bed as high as it would go and I used it as an altar.
I turned on my iPod... to "the best" worship songs I could think of.
Then, I called out to the one I thought was punishing me.
"Why? You took my daddy from me... now this! Where is the love you promised?!"
He answered me so clearly.... so firm.
"I didn't cause this, or that. This is not from me, and I do love you. Will you let me show you?"
After a long cry... a lot of long cries... and a lot of arguing... and a ton of praying.
I finally allowed Him to love on me.
I had my head in his lap, and I wept. For a long, long, long time.
He just pushed my hair out of my face and loved on me.
He cried with me. We cried together.
A year later.... what have I done? Nothing.
Except, I finally shut up.
I have always questioned my daddy's death & his love for me.
I thought, "He didn't love me enough to put the drink down."
And I have believed that lie my whole life.
That I wasn't good enough .... I wasn't enough, and I never will be, for anyone.
Recently, I had a vision of myself at my daddy's funeral. It was 1988.
I was 10 years old... and it was raining. I was crying so hard.
I thought, "Even the angels are crying today. That must be why it's raining."
And for the first time, in this vision, I didn't see God as this big "controller of all things".
I saw Him as someone like me.
Sad.
Broken-hearted.
Trying to keep it all together.
That's when it hit me.
Yes... He could have saved my daddy in the accident that night.
But He didn't.
He had tried several times to put up road blocks in his life...
Knowing what lied ahead in my daddy's life.
But my daddy couldn't put the drink down.
...And that had nothing to do with me.
It wasn't that he didn't love me enough to stop.
He didn't love himself enough to stop.
I may never know why my daddy didn't love himself.
But for the first time.... ever... I felt like he did truly love me, enough.
Sometimes He uses experiences of our past to teach us.
Who knew the things that hurt us the most could teach us the most?
That has been the most revolutionary experience.
Because a child can carry so many lies with them and most people would never know it.
They carry it so well hidden in the depths of their soul.
It alters who they will become.
And until they learn to let go.... it will weigh them down so heavily.
It causes anxiety in the smallest of tasks.
It causes them to doubt their self-worth.
This comes out in different areas of life.... weight gain or extreme weight loss.
Maybe these kids end up on drugs.
Maybe they do worse.
But it's not the end.
At least, it doesn't have to be.
In the weeks and months after her birth.
I had vowed to see this through His eyes.
Not mine.
My fears of having a daughter were slowly being shattered.
My fears of being "enough" were burning away.
I have learned what patience is.
I have learned that I am not exempt.
I have learned that I am enough and I will forever be enough.
I have learned that He finds me worthy of such a precious and fragile gift.
She is my gift.
And her extra chromosome?
Well, that was something Satan "tried" to ruin her with.
But He made sure that didn't happen.
He made sure that extra chromosome made her extra sweet.
Extra loving.
Extra silly.
Extra joyful.
Sure, I could tell you we have thousands of dollars in debt.... for surgeries, and therapy.
I could dwell on that and the hours upon hours of the week I spend teaching her things that come as second nature to you and I.
Yeah, I could go on and on about how inconvenient therapy 5 times a week can be.
About how I have to plan everything around it.
I could tell you that she can't "soothe herself" to sleep as easily as most children.
I could have a pity party on the floor, right there where it's covered in stains from literally thousands of projectile vomiting episodes.
I could tell you about the stubborn streak so wide it would give your worst nightmare a run for it's money.
I could tell you I will never have the freedom of the "empty nest syndrome" when my kids are grown and married and living on their own.
I could cry for days knowing my dreams of touring Europe for months after Lake has graduated high school are shot because I doubt I can leave her for that long.
But I won't.
Because that is not what I choose to look at.
I choose to look at that sweet face, the one that smiles with her entire head.
I choose to laugh at her trying so hard to stack a block that she gets angry and throws it when she can't.
I choose to see the innocence in her eyes that tells her she is no different than the other children.
I choose to see the "want" she has to do something and help her channel it into "determination" to complete it.
I choose to be excited that she won't rush off to college and leave me trailing in the wind...
Instead, she will sit quietly with me on the porch in the morning and we'll drink warm drinks and laugh at the neighbors running late for work and running over their trash can.
I choose to applaud every snuggle, every hug, every smile, every giggle as if it's the first time she has ever done it.
I choose to learn from her along the way.
He never said this was going to be easy.
But He did say I would love it....
If only I would shut up and listen and watch closely.
So that's what I have been trying to do.
I see now, that He gave her to me to show me how to love unconditionally.
Most importantly.... how to accept unconditional love.
I see now, that He gifted her to me to show me that my worth is far more than something a normal human can offer.
It's a gift in the unseen.... and in the little things, it's hidden.
She's a gift.... And I accept this gift, wholeheartedly.
Will you see the sand as a nuisance?
Or will you see the whole beach and it's beauty?

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Meant to Be

There are times in your life when you just have to say, "Let it be".
Then, there are times in your life when you say, "It's meant to be."

In the beginning of this journey, I vowed to never be disappointed.
I knew this was only a grain of sand to that which would make up the whole beach of life.
I have not been disappointed.... but I have been amazed.

The love shared between these two is never lost.
The looks they give to one another are those of adoration and admiration.
They share a bond like I have never seen.

He is beginning to understand more and more of who she is.
She is beginning to annoy him.
Ahhhh.... siblings :)

She is a sweeter than pie little girl with a little bit of an attitude...
A heart bigger than Texas...
And she is one spunky monkey.
Lennon loves life. Loves to giggle. Loves to dance.
And most of all, Lennon loves her big "bubba", Lake.

She is 17 months old now.
Lennon has been walking for 2 months now.
In the last month it has really caught fire.
She almost never crawls anymore.
She hears music and immediately begins to dance.
She has started to pick up her food and eat it with her hands (score!).
Lennon is repeating "words" to the best of her ability right now.
She loves her baby dolls, stuffed animals, and paper products of any kind.
The bath used to be a scary place and it is now one of her favorite places.
My, my, my, how the tables have turned.
She is growing up so fast.
She is a smorgasbord of bossy pants, priss-pot, fiestiness, and snuggles.
She is the cream of my crop.


She is the cream of his crop.


You don't always know when the time is "right" to have children.
It's not like God writes it in the sky.
There isn't this bell that goes off.
It just kind of happens... like "do or die".
Or maybe even, "oops".
You give up a lot of your selfishness, your so-called life.
(Insert My So-Called Life reference... Check.)
Somehow, all the kinks seem to work themselves out....
And it ends up being something far greater...
Or it takes you far deeper...
Than you ever dreamed or imagined.
You wake up one day thinking...
"Maybe... just maybe, somewhere over the rainbow does exist."
Because these two little blue birds flew right into my life.



And before you know it....
One of those little blue birds is flying off to Kindergarten.
Or "big kid school", as we call it.
The apple of my eye is growing up.
If I ever find that clock, I am stopping it, just for a little while.

You may, or may not have, cried on the way home because he was more ready than you.
You may, or may not have, really let the tears fall with the realization of one day knowing you won't have to push the little bird out of nest...
Because he downright jumped before you were ready.

Then you look beside you, and still perched in the nest is one little blue bird.
There's always that one little bird that's a little more skittish.... a little more dependent.
That little bird reminds you that life is not passing you by at the speed of light.
Instead, life is slowing down just enough for you to enjoy every moment just a little bit longer.
You savor to the core every little hug and snuggle, every new "thing" she's doing, and every beautiful smile.

It's right then...
When you are looking at the sweet face of God's little present...
That you flash back over the last 17 months ...
To the moment when you vowed to stop asking "why"....
Because you just knew....
You knew all was right in the world.
It was meant to be.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Simulcasts and Simultaneous Napping

I feel like I won the lottery.
I have Lake, Lennon, Charlie (my stud), and my niece (Nora Kate) all down for a nap simultaneously.
Who needs millions of dollars when you can have SILENCE?!
Silence is totally underrated.

Moving on.

We just left our church from a 2 part marriage seminar (simulcast) led by Pastor Jimmy Evans, called "The Indestructible Marriage".
LOVE him and his wife.
They were pastors at our church, Gateway, when we lived in the DFW area....
and I follow him on Twitter.
Really great, down to earth Southern people.

Anyways... at the end, we all renewed our vows.
Now... I had already warned my friends that I was going to laugh during that part.
Not because I wasn't serious about my vows.
Just because, well, when I am nervous, I do one of two things... cry or giggle.
This time it was giggle.
At my wedding, it was cry.
This is why we should have eloped the first time...
and also should have said our vows in private again.
I just gotta give you a quick play by play of what went down between Charlie and I during this very serious, and completely wonderful, moment.
I tell ya, my ADHD rears it's ugly head at the most inopportune times.

Jimmy tells us to take off our rings and give to one another.
My ring was very hard to get off.
I knew it would be even harder to get back on.
We stand side by side... my arm around him, his around me.
I think to myself, "Should we be holding hands? Standing facing each other? Crap... most everyone is BEHIND us... what are they doing?!"
I am too nervous to look around.
"Concentrate on Jimmy" I say to myself.
At this point, I have questioned myself to death about how we are supposed to stand.
So much so, that I have NO IDEA what Jimmy just said to do.
Charlie, grabs my hand and says, "You need to face me."
Now I feel dumb. OK, so apparently he heard these directions?! Ugh!
I am still too nervous to look around at everyone else.
Then I start annoying myself with more brain jabbering...
"Shut up and listen, Taryn! Did he say something else? Crap... what did Jimmy say now?"
Charlie takes both my hands and starts his part of the vow.
I think, "Oh! We're starting... Do I still have his ring? Does he have mine? WHY am I not listening!?"
When he says, "I Charlie, take you Taryn..." I have no idea why, but I start giggling.
Maybe because he never talks to me with my name.
It's always, "Hey, babe... can we..."
Or "Babe, do you know where..."
You know?
It's never, "Taryn....."
Just way too formal.
So now I am giggling and thinking, "That sounded weird hearing him say my name."
He smiles awkwardly, and I know he is thinking, "No one else is giggling!"
So I straighten my smile and focus on his sweet words.
Now it's my turn ...and I think to myself again....
"Please don't let me mess this up. Wait... what did Jimmy say?!"
I catch the last part and figure out the rest...
"I, Taryn, take you Charlie.... "
Praise the Lord...
A very sobering non giggly moment presents itself and I grab it by the horns.
We say our vows and it's very sweet and I meant EVERY word and I know Charlie did.
To actually go into the full circle of where we have come and gone and come again in the last few years (as every marriage has and will at some point... possibly many points) would take more than a blog and it's a little more than I wanna share here. HA!
I will say, it was so so so nice to have this moment, to sort of start over.
I would love to do it again every year.
It was simply beautiful.
Then, it was time for him to place my ring on my finger.
I immediately start giggling... again.
Because I know this is going to be difficult.... because I put that thing on every day.
He can't get it past my knuckle (no shock!) and he starts giggling....
Ugh! The shame of fat fingers.
He leaves it on my knuckle as if that is where it is supposed to be.
I am not amused....
Anyways...
I easily slide his ring on... Totally not fair.
We say the last part of our vows... and then we kiss our spouse.
We are now Mr. and Mrs. Charlie Davidson.... again :)

If only we got another honeymoon to Hawaii.
I totally think we deserve it.

Instead, we pick up my sweet and beautiful niece, Nora Kate... who will be 3 years old on 10/17.
I am quite excited to spend time with her.
Then, we pick up our two love monkeys, Lake (5) & Lennon (17 months), and we head home.
I make lunch for all, get all three kiddos snacks, and then get everyone one down for a nap.
Then, I started laundry.
And while no, we did NOT get a second honeymoon, we totally got something even better.
We have two love monkeys, and we totally take pride in them....
The products of our love, devotion, and life long commitments to each other.
We are quite blessed.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Little Heroes

I believe there are people in our life that nudge us on when life deals us, what we believe to be, a bad hand. I have quite a few people I can only hope, after my time here on earth has passed, know what they meant to me.

- Helen Keller

One of those people I have the privilege to call "husband". My husband treats me the way he wants to be treated, even when I am being a jerk. He is my constant reminder that there is humor in everything. Sometimes, well most times, when I am hugging him, I wonder if he is thinking what I am thinking, which is, "There's no place I would rather be. No place I feel more myself, than these arms." My husband works so hard, and long hours, to provide for us. He may not see all the benefits, he might not have a hot meal on the table when he returns home. He might not always have clean underwear... but he never complains. His attitude is always pleasant. He never loses his temper. He is not an emotional spender. He never overreacts. He is pretty much the opposite of me in every way.... down to the music we like. My husband is my hero.... He is constantly saving the day by fixing the toilet, fixing the sink, hanging this and that on the wall, making last minute pit stops, making sure our bills are paid, the yard looks good, the cars have gas... and oil... and water... all the little things I get overwhelmed with.

"I'm a hero with coward's legs."
- Spike Milligan

My 5 year old son, Lake, is my hero. Yesterday he saved the day by pointing out a Black Widow Spider in our living room. He yelled, "Mommy! There is a very poisonous spider in the living room." I asked him how he knew and his response was, "...Because it has a red spot on it's back!" Sure enough, there she was, covered in evil, running across the floor, then up under the coffee table. She even tried to fake dead when I hit her with a shoe. I tried to pick her up with a paper towel and she took off again. Thank goodness, my friend Kelly was there, with a shoe again. I might not have reacted so quickly if he hadn't of said "a very poisonous spider". My son, who is like a sponge, remembers EVERYTHING. He learned in school about poisonous spiders. We watch "snake shows" and "tornado shows"... we look things up on the Internet. He is so inquisitive and never forgets what he learned. He wants to be an Architect. He says, "I no longer want to be the construction worker. I want to draw what they are going to build." He is brilliant
and I know God has great plans for him. My son is my hero.


The Orkin Man is also my hero ...enough said.

Christopher Reeve (aka, Superman)

Last night I was holding Lennon and swaying her in my arms, as she was rubbing her sleepy eyes. I started singing (randomly) "I can be your hero baby. I can kiss away the pain. I will stand by your forever. (*oh yeah*) You can take my breath away" and tears filled my eyes. I tried to fight them, but as usual, I am no match for a sappy feeling. I continued to sing this quietly over and over until she was barely awake. Tears streaming down my face and onto her little yellow pajamas with pink flowers. I continued to sing the song... then I switched it up a little... started singing it in my "Hispanic Accent"... that's when she started giggling and I realized she was only faking being asleep.

My daughter Lennon is constantly defying the odds and proving she is a force to be reckoned with. Her crawling skills can be compared to none. When she was nine moths old, the day she started crawling, she proved herself, with her determination and her strength. She crawls with purpose, with speed, and precision. She reminds me of a little pick-up truck on RC Pro-Am. Sometimes I imagine there are little "power-ups" all over the floor and she is picking them up as she rounds the corner, picking up speed and racing away from Mommy, who is just trying to get her ready for bath... or bed... or anything really. Little "oil slicks" disguised as spit-up spots are no match for her. By the end of the day, my little pick-up artist has gathered all her N-I-N-T-E-N-D-O letters and is ready for bed... only to start the race all over again tomorrow.

As of now, crawling is slowing becoming a second fiddle to walking. She is 15 months old and walking. She is meeting "average children" milestones left and right. She is in the 75% for height.... I pray she is tall like all of her 2nd cousins on the Davidson side. Even though she cannot (translate: will not) eat without me feeding it to her in a spoon, she wows me with her "vocabulary". If you aren't paying attention, you might miss it, because yes, it does sound like blabber... but every now and then you can hear what she is trying to tell you. She repeats most of what we say. When we take her out of her high chair she says "Ahhh duhhn". When we open the blinds or the door she says, "Ouss-sigh". When she sees her Little Quack Counts book, she says, excitedly, "Duck!" When she really wants me to come get her or love on her she screams, "Mnlah Mnlah" (this was hard to put in letters... just stick your tongue over your bottom teeth and bottom lip - let it hang out your mouth at bit and say Momma). When she points at something she wants or wants to know what it is, she says "Dat?" She moves her hands like a foot ball umpire saying "no good" - even more so, sticks her tongue out and blows spit - when she doesn't want to do something. She screams "Buh Buh" while beating on Lake's bedroom door when he is sleeping or locks her out.
She has learned to communicate.
She has learned to walk.
She has learned to manipulate you into feeding her so she doesn't have to.
She now eats anything, with any texture.
She now holds her bottle, her sippy-cup, and her cup with a straw all by herself.
She now plays with toys as they were intended to be played with.
Lennon is an over-comer. I sometimes look at her playing, watching her feed her babies or love on them, and I tell her, "Girl, quit playin'! You're just pretending to have Down Syndrome!"
Her joy surpasses all others. Her determination will take her far. There is nothing she won't do.

So, last night as I was singing "Hero" to her, I realized something...
Not only will I always be her hero... but she will always be mine.
All that she has been through, all that she could face in this big scary world...
I have no doubt it has, and will, only made her stronger.
It will be the force that drives her to overcome any obstacle in her way.
Her stubbornness will be her sword....
And her mother will be her shield.


Monday, July 18, 2011

Rainbows & Randoms

It's been a good while since I have last posted.

First, a few quick "health updates":
Lake had his tonsils out, ended up in the hospital for dehydration and a fever he couldn't shake.
Lennon's breath started stankin' real bad so I ended up with both of them at the Dr... she is back on antibiotics to fight what we think might have been the start of her nasty throat staff infection again. Nipped it in the bud, yes we did. I am having Lennon's allergies checked... she just goes round and round with a stopped up nose... something is triggering it.

And now... the randoms:
Soccer is the most boring thing to watch... EVER. However, the announcer is hysterical. Mostly because he talks like a fairy - because I believe all fairies have a British accent and speak phrases such as "Looking for one magical little moment" and "they must have been watching some fun tapes". Apparently this fairy still lives in 1988.

My newest obsession... this hair:

I think I have an obsession with multi-colored items.
Behold... Jello I made for Lake:

Cupcakes I made for Lennon's birthday party:
LSU Pancake Day at home:
Rainbow pancakes when Bambie and Presley visited us:
Crazy Pancake Day was this Sunday:
I am fully aware, and so was Lake, that the pancakes resembled Monsters Inc.

Last Saturday I garage sailed (sailed... not saled... because we sail from one sale to the next) with my good friends Carla Moore. I bought the cutest chair (with a matching mate chair... why didn't I just say two chairs?) and a pillow ... see below:
Now I realize I should have vacuumed before I took the pic.
Also, need to lower the painting.
I might should put something cuter on my night stand as well.

And now a funny memory:
Charlie and I got so tickled while watching the boring soccer game. The announcer used a word that triggered a memory I buried way down deep... deep in the pits of shame and embarrassment ... embarrassment and shame because "I knew better". But funny, nonetheless.
I blogged about this on my Xanga page (RIP, The Dramanator) when it happened. So I shall tell it again. You know those moments when you should think a little harder before you speak... yeah this is one of those moments.
Once upon a time.... we were young enough to be in the "College and Career" class at church. Our teachers, Matt and Myra, had taken over the class for the previous teachers and wanted to start fresh and rename the group.... So we all wrote down a name or two or three and we went around the room with our ideas. Well, a particular sermon from the last Sunday came to mind, in which my pastor said, "You know we really gotta get in the Word, get on our knees in prayer, let God know what's on your heart, your mind... We need to penetrate the Kingdom of God... get out there and witness to a dying world. Let God show you those who need to be encouraged. Make a difference." You know... the usual pastory stuff. So I wrote down my name for the new group. It's getting closer to being my turn... I am sitting tall, all proud of my class name. Charlie leans over and whispers, "So what did you come up with?" I said, "You show me yours and I'll show you mine." So he showed me his class name. I liked his, and thought to myself it was a good idea. I proudly showed him mine and he says with a concerned look on his face, "Is this a joke?!" So naturally, I am worried now, because it's nearing my turn. And that's when it hits me. I CANNOT SAY THIS. I cannot tell the class I want to rename our class from College and Career to "PENETRATION". It all starts with a good intention, people. Better I just keep my thoughts to myself.

Anyways... that's enough for now... The children will be awake soon. Mommy needs a minute to rest her eyes as well.


Sunday, July 10, 2011

Misery loves company.

So my "Mama's getaway" to Arizona was everything I needed it to be. Relaxing by the pool. Lazying around, watching tv. Doing nothing. I didn't have to be anywhere, or take care of anyone. It was great to visit with a great friend, and her husband, and to meet their little angel, Eli.

As amazing, and much needed, as it was, through all that lounging, I found myself missing my children too much. I wanted to be back home with my husband and in his arms. Five days is just a really long time. So, that last night, I found myself very homesick. Maybe it was the anticipation of my long flight across my country combined with my iPhone taking it's last ragged breath as I desperately searched for a bar, or signal, to tell my husband what was going on. I found myself in a pool of tears. It was bittersweet, to leave my friend again, knowing it could be another 2 years before we reunited again... Combined with longing to be home.

After a long day in airports and on planes, I finally made it home. At the airport, I was surprised with big hugs and a bouquet of flowers from Lake. Charlie said, "The flowers were all his idea." Is this kid for real? Love!

So, after I was home, my darling dear introduced me to my new phone. (insert happy dance here) I fall fast asleep and I sleep hard. My bed. My sheets. My husband. Oh how I had missed thee.

(I found this post still in draft status... Apparently I had more to say... but that is gone now.)

Monday, June 27, 2011

I Need a Xanax Flavored Icee

Waking up at the butt crack of dawn is not my idea of "fun".
If it weren't illegal, and terribly wrong, I would "consider" dosing my kids with sleep medication.
But, alas.... I don't do crap like that, so I just make coffee and deal.

The morning began with Lennon waking to the get the worm. Early. Like 5:45 early.
Not cool. Not cool at all. So I grabbed a bottle, warmed it, with my eyes closed and leaning on the counter top. Then I scooped her up and she snuggled on my shoulder. I changed her diaper, and we headed to my bed so she could drink her bottle while I snuggled against her and slept 20 more mins. When she was done, she put her hands on my face to wake me and I tried desperately to encourage her to go back to sleep... "Sleep is good", I tell her. No such luck. So into the den we go... where she made a mess of toys and played while I attempted to lay on the couch and rest ... again. Then, I hear a door open. Enter, Lake Davidson. Hungry, cold, still sleepy. Could this kid get any more miserable? I mean, go back to bed if you are going to bring all that whining in here. I got breakfast for us all and realized, "I don't have a car to take the kids to their ENT appointments." (insert cuss word in my brain) Seriously, this annoys me greatly. Especially when I have not even had coffee and my 5 year old is in a constant state of whine.

Charlie's car wouldn't start this morning, so I called my sister to borrow hers. Thank God for family. Just as we finish breakfast (which took all of my sanity cells to get Lake to eat - eat, when all he did was whine about being hungry), I clean Lennon's face off, go to get coffee and step in a pile of spit up. Now, with a wet regurgitated milky foot, and still no coffee, the door bell rings.... Therapy is here... And so is the Scary Tow Truck Guy. They grab Lennon, I apologize for my appearance, the appearance of the house and the fact that they have to move their car so Scary Tow Truck Guy can tow Charlie's car into the shop. I give Scary Tow Truck Guy the keys. I watch Scary Tow Truck Guy get in the car, start it, back it up and drive it onto the tow truck. Are you effing kidding me?! I don't have time for this.

So I go to the den and watch and learn therapy. Enter, Lake Davidson.... Lake wants to play, watch TV, whining because he is "still hungry".... Sadly, dude just gets the back burner when therapy is going on. I have to explain to him that he cannot be in here because Lennon wants to play with him instead of do therapy, so he goes back to his room, crying. My heart hurts for him. But I don't have time to go and comfort him because Scary Tow Truck Guy is beating, literally beating, on the door. Scary Tow Truck Guy charges me a small fortune and my left toe to haul the "broken" car.

I still need coffee... and now, possibly a Xanax. So, I go into the kitchen, where I can still see Lennon, and her therapists.... I step into, yet another, pile of spit up. (I look up to Heaven and give a God one of those "Seriously?!" looks) I clean the vomit from between my toes (Again), fix my coffee and sit on the floor, watching and learning therapy techniques, only to shift my weight in an attempt to get into a more comfy position on the living room floor and put my knee into spit up. More spit up.

If I was not strong, I would have cried at this moment. But, what can I do? What is crying going to do? I laugh... because this is my life... every day... and I doubt it's going to be any different for a while. I might as well get used to it. God loves me... I know He does. I think He thinks I have the strength to carry on, with a cheerful, yet weary disposition - which is similar to a state of hysteria and delirium. So, I do. I try, at least.

I do the best I can.

Po-Po's (la policia) beware... if you see me walking down the interstate naked, and babbling my lips and mumbling something about "spit up and constant whining"...
Just let me be.... I'll come around... eventually.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Keepin' it real.

A typical conversation around my house. Me, cracking up at myself... Charlie, bringing me back down to earth.

Me: (Throwing Charlie a pair of his work-out shorts.) "Here, put these in your drawer."

Charlie: (Joking, in an over exaggerated child-like voice) "No!"

Me: "Not the mama!" (I start cracking up at my own joke... Like, laughing hysterically.)

Charlie: "Wow. You really have your giggle box turned on."

Me: "Come on. That was funny! You know, from that show, Dinosaurs?!"

Charlie: (Nodding his head disapprovingly.) "I didn't think it was funny back then... And, I don't think it's funny now."

Keepin' it real.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Excuse me sir, I saw you lift up and fan your poot.

As if the title of this blog needs any explanation.

Ok, so, I left off with me waiting in the ATL airport for my flight to Tucson. Waiting in line, a single dad with his 7 year old son are waiting in front of me. Dad turns around, looks (a little too long) at my feet, moves his eyes up to my dress, my necklace, my hair... Then he looks me in the eye and says (with a creepy "I'm channeling Don Johnson with my highlighted hair" smirk), "Someone is all color-coordinated - jewelry matches your shoes and nail polish - gold and teal." I am stone-faced right about now because I dont even know how to respond to this. What does that even mean? Why are you gawking at me like a piece of lunch meat? I shyly smile (unappreciative) and act like my nose itches, showing my wedding ring. This apparently works. "Don" turns around without saying a word. Score.

Attention Passengers: What happens on the plane does not stay on the plane.
This is a very full flight and I have an aisle seat. I am Zone 1... we load on the plane first. I sit down, place my purse and carry-on under the seat in front of me, buckle up, and begin to examine each person boarding the plane, wondering who my seat partners will be. "Please don't let it be him" and "Oh no, not her". Sometimes by looking at people, you just really know who you *don't* wanna sit by. I am in full on mouth-breathe right now. An older, and shorter, white-haired man with jeans, a button up, and a blazer starts loading his carry-on in the compartment across from me. He looks like a Professor. He is not my seat partner but he is my aisle partner. The Professor drops something. I assume his knees don't bend because when he stoops over to pick it up, his rear end is literally in my face, (I am not even kidding). It's all of .2 cm from my mouth. I could have licked his jeans without moving. I make a face and lean away. I was appearing obviously disgruntled to the other passer-by's. Professor Butt-in-my-face finally takes his seat. By the time we are ready for lift off, I have my seat partners, a larger greasy couple, who apparently hate shoes. As soon as their butts hit the seat, off came their shoes. I am very annoyed at this; no one wants to smell your feet. We are all sharing the same little bit of recycled air here. Have some decency. I look around, and I notice most people near me now have their shoes off. What is the deal with this?!
The flight begins. Not long after take off, drinks and snacks are passed out, and the movie starts. We are watching "Just Go With It", with Jennifer Anniston and Happy Gilmore. The movie is quite funny, by the way. I am busy shoveling down Reese's Pieces when a stench grazes my nostrils. (I forget to breathe through my mouth after a while.) I am convinced my aisle neighbor, Professor Butt-in-my-face, has crapped his Depends. I do a quick glance over to him. He looks very uncomfortable... Confirming he is the culprit. The air finally clears... Well, as clear as it's going to get on a plane. My shoeless seat neighbor has taken over the arm rest completely and fallen asleep. I don't like to touch the bare skin of strangers (or strange people) so I am leaning into the aisle. I now know what my Charlie means when he says to me, "You look like roadkill when you sleep."
After the flight attendant slams me in the funny bone (which is not funny at all) with her drink cart, I decide leaning toward the aisle is not an option. So I force Roadkill to move her arm.
Trying to get focus back on the movie, I turn the volume up on my head phones. Mid Reese's Pieces mouthful, I see a movement in my peripheral vision. I glance over the aisle to Professor Butt-in-my-face just in time to see him lift his butt off the seat a little, and start fanning his crotch with the Sky Miles magazine.
Oh. My. Gosh. Is this real life?!
It didn't take long for the stench to reach air and wreak havok. I didn't even have time to swallow my Reese's Pieces and start my mouth breathing. I don't know if this man is nervous on the flight or if he ate dead bodies for dinner, but this has *got* to stop. The stench was so thick it must have aroused my shoeless arm rest hogging neighbor, because she immediately started coughing. Great. Not only am I surrounded by butt-lifting pooters, but shoeless hacking coughers.
Remind me to drive next time.
After a while the air somewhat cleared but as soon as it did, my neighbor started her coughing again. For the rest of the flight, both neighbors decide to work in shifts... pooting and coughing.
The pooting and the coughing has nearly drove me to drinking. I am in full on "counting mode" now. Counting everything I see as a means of calming down. This continues most the flight.
Once we land, I grab my bags and stand immediately ... I give my aisle partner a "don't even think about getting off before me" look and he allows me to go first. There was no way I was standing down-wind of the Professor.
I find baggage claim and I find Rebecca waiting on me. After loads of hugs, lots of loud giggling and laughing, I begin to warn her of my plane partners. Looking around, we realize we are the only ones laughing and having a good time. Everyone else looks miserable and tired.
We grab my bags and head out the door to her car. Chatty and giggly and telling stories, I have no doubt we were just as annoying as as the 30 teens.
Just as the airport doors open, a cool dry desert breeze hits my face... I inhale and pause, taking it all in. I think to myself,
"We're not in Louisiana anymore, Toto."