Tough times-

My week in review:

This past week, the strongest, bravest woman I know had one of the toughest times of her life. She entered the hospital last Monday, for what should have been a two to three day stay, for a routine (albeit major) surgery. The actual surgery went well, but she suffered a couple of major setbacks. Although she is finally on the mend, and scheduled to be released tomorrow, she has a long way to go in her convalescence. I’m not well when she’s not well, and those closest to me know this all too well. Thank you, Sister Agnes Delores, my run away nun, for simply walking into the room. Thank you, TT, my laugh out loud partner, for working tirelessly to help me keep the tears at bay. Thanks, LarKay, godmother extraordinaire, for looking out for me and my littles and thank you, thank you, thank you, my littles…for being…MY LITTLES —!

#onmysix24/7

#hesheryoungestbutimthebaby

#notoutofthewoodsyet

P.S. special note: Thank you to my super man, Chuckie, who outgrew his cape when we were kids, for hanging in there and doing all the things I couldn’t do, and his Lois Lane for always being ready with hot tea and hot towels and for taking such great care of Sir Finn.

Abducted: He said he was our uncle (a true story)

When we were old enough to attend school, our parents sent us to what I can only describe as “the little schoolhouse on the hill”. Seriously, it was a big white building that sat on top of a hill. Thinking back, it truly looked like something from “Little House on the Prairie”. Lunch was the same thing every day… English peas, with an orange slice and a piece of cornbread. I can vividly recall the teacher constantly saying “Ro- Shellllll, don’t fork your bread”. As if spending your day in a hauntingly scary looking house wasn’t enough, we had to look at and listen to “Mrs. Congeniality” all day, too. Luckily, my brother and I were in the same classroom since she was the only teacher.

I’ve mentioned before that I followed my brother everywhere. One day, just before dismissal, the sky turned dark and a torrential rainstorm pummeled the area. My brother and I stood inside the building looking out for our parents. A fellow classmate, who just so happened to be Mrs. Congeniality’s kid, approached us, and for lack of a better term, baited us. The little demon dared us to walk home, in the rainstorm, all alone. Here’s where I have proof that my dear, sweet, older brother loved me from the start, he grabbed my hand, and led me out of the building into the storm. He told me that we would be okay and that he knew the way home.

I suspect, had I looked back, I would have seen that evil kid and her mother laughing at the poor little drenched idiots who were trudging along holding onto one another for dear life. The rain was coming down so hard I could hardly see what was going on in front of me. We made it down the hill and to the main street, which was generally a very busy two lane street. On this particular day, traffic was almost non-existent, probably because the entire area was under a tornado warning. Anyway, as we made our way in the direction that my big brother assured me would get us home, we approached a bridge that was completely unfamiliar to us. That’s when an older model blue car drove past us then pulled over on the shoulder of the road. We held on to one another and kept walking when suddenly the driver’s door opened and a very tall, thin man stepped out into the rain, basically blocking our way. When he bent down and spoke to us, we, being brought up to be polite and respectful, stopped and greeted the man. He smiled and told us that he was our “Uncle Jeff” and that we should get into his car so he could take us home. I was so happy that “Uncle Jeff”, whom I’d never met nor had I heard of before, happened to be in the neighborhood that I gladly let him pick me up and put me in his trunk., I guess my big brother was happy too because he allowed “Uncle Jeff” to pick him up and put him in there with me.

To our horror, he wasn’t really our uncle and he didn’t have a clue where we lived. He had lied… and so have I, but only about the trunk. He didn’t really put us in the trunk, and by the time my big brother remembered that we didn’t have an uncle named Jeff, the man was pulling into the driveway of that darn little white schoolhouse. He had taken us back to the scene of our escape. “Uncle Jeff” parked, opened the back door, picked both of us up and carried us to the front door of the school. Mrs. Congeniality stepped out and acted surprised to see us in the arms of that stranger. I heard her thank him for saving us as she closed and locked the door behind him. She immediately called our mom and dad, and I specifically recall sitting in a chair in front of the open oven door eating cookies when they arrived. Was the pilot lit in that stove? Was it set on 500 degrees? Was she trying to kill us with gas fumes or make chocolate chips out of our little drenched bodies?

Mom and dad arrived and mom cried when that crazy old lady told her what happened. They carried us out to the car and took us home.

To this day we don’t have any idea who that man was, where he came from or where he went. Needless to say, that was our last day at the little schoolhouse on the hill.

 

Young Teen v. Old Mom (still at it)

My young teen and I are at it again and I’m winning!

A pitiful looking stray dog wandered into our yard several days ago and per the norm, my young teen wants to keep it. You know how kids love puppies and kittens and baby bunnies– right up until they become dogs and cats and adult rabbits? Well, that’s exactly how my girl is. You see where I’m going with this? Yep, she loves em either until they outgrow their cuteness or until it wears off or until they become adults. So, she asked if we could keep the pup and of course I said no. Here’s the conversation that resulted in my taking the lead:

Young Teen: “Ma, can we keep her?”

Old Mom: “No”

Young Teen: “Ma, please, I’ll feed her”

Old Mom: “No you won’t, I have to force you to feed the one we already have”

Young Teen: “I promise I’ll feed her. If I don’t you can take my phone”

Old Mom: While laughing hysterically–“Girl, I can take you phone anytime I want, what else ya got”

Young Teen: 1                       Old Mom: 2

_________________________________________________________

The Family I Never Dreamed Of—

(This is the third chapter of this short story. Follow the links below to read the previous chapters)

http://wp.me/p5AbPX-O intro 

http://wp.me/p5AbPX-Ox  chapter 1

http://wp.me/p5AbPX-OH    chapter2

The den (as only I remember it)

Obviously, I survived that little accident (incident). My eyes began to adjust to light much better, but only after the bandages from the second surgery were removed. That first pair of cadaver eyes were no match for those boiling hot, steam baths mama gave me the first time I was released from the hospital. She felt really bad about the way my head and hair smelled since she’d tried to clean my eyes. The judge added a “no contact with hot water” clause to the paperwork the next time I went home, so my skin stopped peeling off and I was able to stop drooling so much, too. I remember the doctor saying that my tonsils were darker than the other parts of my throat. That was probably because of all that hot ass funny, sweet, frothing tea they were giving me. Oh, well, believe me, it gets even more interesting as I look back even further into my own mind. Let’s take a walk into and through the den.

Picture this if you can, burnt orange, thin, carpet with flicks and flakes of some colors I don’t remember. Being a smart ass isn’t a very cute attribute. Yes, I forgot the colors, so what? That’s not the important part of this memory… again, you get what I give you and you know the rest…

Now this was the room that was most lived in. It had a long chocolate colored leather couch that sat facing north, which was where the sliding glass patio door was. Through it, we had a picturesque view of the cinder block fence that daddy and his friend, Mr. Dunston, built with their own hands. I would have said with their own four hands but Mr. Dunston had a hand and a hook so technically that wouldn’t have been a true statement.

On to the memory:

I think I mentioned earlier that the utility room was just off the kitchen, which connected to the den. I always, always followed my mom around. When I was half blind (from the black pepper incident) for that year and a half or so, I discovered that her scent was easiest to follow early in the morning. I had fewer trip and fall and walk into wall accidents before 11 a.m., which is probably how I became the morning person that I am today. I know it’s how I almost got run over by my own mother. No, not in the car, she was running… from a mouse. See, she was in the utility room doing laundry and I was standing next to her. She (apparently) saw a mouse and without any warning whatsoever, she bolted out the door into the kitchen and through the den—and this is where it gets tricky— she leapt,over that chocolate ass couch, lengthwise, with my country ass daddy sleeping on it. She never checked up. She moved at warp speed, and I, running as fast as my little braced legs could carry me, threw up everything I’d eaten for at least the last week. I would imagine my screaming is what woke daddy and when he got mama’s shoe dislodged from between my shoulder blades the lurching finally subsided. Oh, yes, I realize this is the first mention of, my braces but they were of no real consequence. Mama was moving so fast I couldn’t have caught her if I’d had jets tied to my shoes. I eventually crawled down the hall where I fell asleep knocking on her locked bedroom door.

 

The Family I Never Dreamed Of

Introduction http://wp.me/p5AbPX-Ot

Chapter 1

Memories, memories, memories… where shall I start?… Ok, how about this…The playroom… the time my dad and his friends hired a “hit man from Detroit” to come down and “take care of a situation”. To this day, I still remember wondering how the hell “Uncle John” was gonna take care of anything without ever opening his mouth. He never uttered a single word. He just sat there with an oversized Stetson on his head and an extra long trench (Godfather looking overcoat) with his hands hidden deep inside his pockets. Wait…I guess he had hands… to be honest I never saw them so he could very well have been handless… which would make the fact that he never spoke even more of an anomaly for a man hired to “take care of a situation”.. Shit… was this real life? It had to be. I can still see those damn near thigh high, shiny, black boots he was wearing in my mind’s rear view mirror.

Unfortunately, I have no further recollection of what ever came of “Uncle John” and his silent self. However, I have vague memories of sipping that sweet, fruity tasting, warm tea with the funny smelling froth on top and my granddaddy’s old pocket watch swinging from side to side in front of me as I dozed off.

(up next: Chapter 2– The Kitchen)

The Family I Never Dreamed Of—

 

This is a casual walk down memory lane filled with the truth as, often, only I remember it.

As life would have it my childhood was fraught with the many trials and tribulations as come with growing up “in the middle”. Yep, I’m a middle child and a girl to boot and as if that isn’t enough, I grew up on a farm way back in the woods. Lucky for me boarding school and the witness protection program saved me from a life of being picked on by my brothers, overlooked by my parents and identified by the old man I stiffed for two chickens and a guinea.

Memories, memories, memories… where shall I start?… Ok, how about this… a memory for each room of the house I grew up in…

—up next—Chapter 1 The Playroom

The 8 (most) FAQ About My Biracial Children…

The 8 (most) FAQ about my biracial children AND the 8 answers they never saw coming—

    (plus 2 bonus comments and the responses they elicited)

  1. Q: Who she get them blue eyes from?

         A:     She got em from Massa

  1. Q: Who baby you done stole?

           A:     I found her in a basket down by the Nile river, don’t tell nobody, ok?

  1. Q: She so pretty, she mixed?

           A:     Are you?

  1. Q: What she mixed wit?

          A:     Puppy and dolphin

  1. Q:     Where did she get all that curly hair?

          A:     It’s a wig, she’s really a boy

  1. Q: Oooh, who her daddy is?

          A:     Jesus

  1. Q: Her daddy white?

          A:     I don’t know, I took her out of somebody’s shopping basket

  1. Q: That’s yo baby?

         A:     No, it’s my puppy.

               Bonus 1: “What a beautiful child. You must be so proud”

                                “Yes’sum, and Massa is too!”

 

              Bonus 2: “Oh my, she’s so neat and clean”

                             “Thank you ma’am, I tries real hard.”     

 

                                                Moral of this story:

                          Don’t come for me if I don’t send for you!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Was This A Trick Question?

 

True Story—

 

While in tenth grade, my religion teacher, Sister Francine, asked the class to take out 5 sheets of paper and make a list of the 5 most important things in our lives. We were told that we could talk among ourselves and that we had 10 minutes. Some of my classmates were still in that “I hate my parents” stage. I guess I’d either passed through it or never experienced it because my mom was at the top of my list. Next on my list were my brothers, my friends, Gidgette, my poodle, and my grandmother.

When the time was up, Sister Francine walked to the front of the class and put a record on the turntable. I don’t remember what the song was, but I do remember it being something slow and pretty. Our instructions were simple: as we listened to the music we were to go to the garbage can and place the pieces of paper in it –one at a time- throwing each piece away signified letting go of that person or thing forever in order to follow God. As I think back, that had to be the hardest day of my high school career. Most of my friends and I were basket cases.

Here’s how it went:

Letting go of Gidgette was truly gut wrenching. After all, I’d had her since I was eight years old and she was the guardian of my lunch. Every morning after I prepared and bagged lunches for my brothers and me, Gidgette would sit next to mine on the ottoman and stop my brothers from switching bags. I always put the best snacks in my bag. That, in and of itself, should explain why it was so hard to choose between letting go of Gidgette and letting go of grandma. I was the difficult teenager and she was the nosey grandmother who gossiped all day with her old lady friends and told my mom everything she “thought” I was doing.  So no brainer, right?!

I also had trouble deciding between my brothers and my friends because my brothers were … well they were my brothers… we aggravated one another and we told on one another and/but we loved one another. I couldn’t begin to imagine my life without “the boys” in it. They were my first friends. I think I trashed my other friends before my brothers, but nonetheless, the tears flowed freely as I stepped up to the garbage can.*Note to my brothers: Rick and Ray if you ever read this you should feel very good about yourselves because you made it through the first three cuts. (LOL). I would like to send out a sincere apology to my tenth grade friends. It’s a good thing your lives didn’t depend on the order of things that day!

Last, but obviously not least, was the piece of paper with those eight simple letters written on it…M-Y-M-O-T-H-E-R… my mother. What did I do? I held on and I cried. The bell rang and I was still holding on to that silly piece of paper that meant more than the world to me. Several of my friends, male and female, were in the same boat. We couldn’t let go. Truth be known, I probably still have that piece of paper tucked away in my old religion book.

Talk about a trick question for a kid!

**Dear Sister Francine, because of you, I never stray too far from the sidewalk, because of you I learned to play on the safe side… you know the rest!

 

In Today’s News We Bring You Potty Training 101-Day 1 (epic fail)

The idea was to potty train an already two and a half year old little girl who reportedly comprehends and articulates exceedingly well for a child of her young years. This was to be a piece of cake for little girl and her family. That family includes a 53 year “old” mom and a 13 year old “mother hen”. Mommy, as she is lovingly called, decided to create a treasure box for the little girl. They would use butcher paper to cover a cardboard box then embellish it with pom poms, stick-on letters, tassels and anything the little girl’s heart desired (after all, this box would hold all sorts of treats and treasures). Mommy and “Tori”, the little girl’s big sister, were sure that this would be more than enough to encourage their little angel. Unfortunately, the little girl with the blazing blue eyes and the cute little button nose lost interest somewhere between wrapping the box and gluing the tassels on. She left the table, grabbed her juice, her tablet and her “Corey”, went to the bedroom and put herself down for a nap. 

FullSizeRender 4.jpg

 

 

Six months blogging re-share number 2

This one’s sure to make you laugh!

Guilt, Innocence and Sarcasm

The author of this essay is a 10 year old child who told her mom she’d washed her face when in fact she had not. Her mom “punished” her for lying by having her write an essay telling why she shouldn’t lie…

(this is a copy of the original essay- although it’s hard to read it -muddling through it is well worth the challenge for a good heart warming laugh—)

 

 

FullSizeRender-8

The guilt (she lied), the innocence (she just wants to play and to stay out of jail) and the sarcasm (47%- really?)