Saturday, March 17, 2007

The jokes on me!

Last night I went out to dinner with the sopranos in Rockpointe's choir. We went to Red Robin in Clinton Twp. and since we had 12 women expected, I went early to get reservations. As I was sitting there all by my lonesome I came up with a funny idea. What if we secretly told our waitress that a random person at the table was celebrating their birthday today? The face on that individual would be priceless when they are trying to figure out why they are singing her "Happy Birthday", when in fact her birthday was not even this month!

Since we had a larger group, they separated us into two tables. As we were waiting for others to arrive, I pitched my idea to the table. Liz instantly thought it was a great idea, so she picked out a woman named Jenny at the other table. As we were finishing up dinner, she told the waitress about the "birthday" and the waitress said she would arrange it. Soon after, the wait staff came out with balloons, ice cream and a candle and announced to the whole restaurant that Jenny was celebrating her 21st birthday today! I couldn't stop laughing as we joined in with the song and clapping. During the celebration, I heard Sheri (who sat next to Jenny) say to us "Good job, guys!". She sincerely thought it was Jenny's birthday! That made me laugh even harder!!!

Then, I looked at Jenny's face to see what strange looks she was having. To my surprise she looked sincerely touched! She was saying "thank you" and acting like it was really sweet that they were singing to her! I was floored. Could it really BE her birthday?

As they wait staff was finishing, Liz went over to Jenny and asked "When WAS your birthday?"

Jenny's answer?


I could not believe it!!!!!!!!!!

What a funny random thing for us to do and even more strange that Liz just HAPPENED to pick Jenny!

Makes me think that someone up ABOVE was laughing just at hard! AT US!!! :)

Sunday, March 11, 2007

New things to come

Whenever someone has asked what my favorite season is, I have always replied spring and fall. The more I have thought about the impending spring, however, I have decided that spring is most certainly my favorite. There is something about the slow warmth and disappearing snow that brings an anticipation. Its as though my senses were asleep during the winter and now they are being prodded with smells of fresh air, warmer breezes and buds slowly beginning to form. Though all is still brown, we know that the greener grass lay just under there dormant. I am so anxious to get my hand back into the soil and plant color around our home. I look forward to choosing a lighter coat to wear and then not needing one at all as the sun begins to creep closer to the earth. All of this makes me long for winter to make its exit.

As I have pondered the excitement I feel towards new things, my thoughts have drifted to the children of Tara Grant. Their mother was murdered by their father about 5 miles from our house. They too are experiencing very new feelings and sights. Their anxiousness does not stem from the grass that will return for them to play in, but questions of where mommy and daddy are and where their new home will be. They should be ready to pull out their tricycles and swings, but instead they can't even go back to the garage where those things are stored. Hopefully they will never have to. I have been so heartbroken for those precious children who lost both of their parents. My heart aches as I think of how they will be told about what happened. I don't know whether it has already been done or perhaps a few years down the road, but either way, they will suffer knowing their parents are gone. What a terrible outcome for those little ones.

Though I will still look forward to what is to come, I won't forget to pray for those that are dreading what horror they are leaving behind. May God give that family peace in the transition they all face.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

The Art of not covetting

Last week I took our daughter over to a friend's house to rehearse for a talent show they are auditioning for. As soon as I saw the name of the subdivision I knew instantly that the family lived in a big house. Not by the specific name, but by that fact that they HAD a sub name. My neighbors and I all joke that we should come up with an elaborate title for the entrance to our sub. Something like "Beverly Hills Estates". You see, our subdivision was founded in 1950 something and back then it was just streets that slowly gained more houses. Our street happens to house the oldest homes and mixed in between the "ancient ones" there are some built in the 70's, 80's and 90's. It is a cute neighborhood filled with many full grown trees, wooded areas and dead ends to make us feel safe and comfortable. Thats mainly why we chose the little ranch style home we bought 5 yrs ago. We loved the neighborhood.

Most of the time, I can drive right by the gigantic homes that continually are constructed around our city and not have too many thoughts about them. But last week, I was faced with the reality that we are living in a very financially divided area. After the rehearsal was over, I picked Hannah up and the father and I arranged for the girls to practice again on Saturday afternoon. This time, however it was our turn to host. As I pulled into our driveway with those thoughts in my head I took in the 950 sq foot home before me. It looked like a garage compared to the homes I had just left. I had to fight the feeling that I may be embarrassed for Hannah's friend to come over and see where we lived. I wondered what the father would think as he drove up. Would he be shocked at the small stature of the place we call home? Would he think we were poor?
I always have tried to put the thoughts of what other people think behind me, but honestly that is one of my biggest down falls. Whether in relationships, social functions or just the general publics view, I want people to think my family is important. I don't mean "important" in the sense that we should be honored but just that we are more than what car we drive, where we buy our kids' clothes and where we live. I am so tired of feeling labeled and knowing there is not much I can do about it. Living in a very mixed population has advantages but we all have to face that those same advantages also come with many stereotypes and misunderstandings. We are not where we shop or what labels we wear. We are all people.

This afternoon as I dropped off our son in an even larger sub for a party, I drove off in my 95 Honda and thought how lucky I am.

The people in those huge homes may have a lot of money, nice furniture and new cars, but I have the opportunity to be home in the afternoon when my kids get off the bus. I can volunteer in school without taking a day off of work. I can enjoy motherhood without the pressures of a boss, sick days and all the other things that would follow along with a job.

A job that could make it possible for us to one day buy one of those same houses.

I think I'll take my neighborhood instead.