Sunday, September 22, 2013


It just hasn't been a good day.  It seems that every day I tell my kids the same thing and they never seem to learn.  Every Sunday I ask them to dress in a collard shirt and decent shorts for church.  Not because they have to impress God or other people, but just to look a bit nicer one day our of the week.  They have finally, after several months, started to put on a nice shirt when they get up.  But inevitably 2 of them come downstairs in nice shirts and awful athletic shorts.  Then they get mad at ME when I ask them to go change shorts.

Then I find out that my 7 1/2 year old wet his bed last night. First time, I think, EVER!  He got up, changed clothes, and just didn't go back to bed because his bed was, quite obviously, wet.  However, he got dressed and made up his bed and went downstairs.  He didn't tell me about it until several hours later.  I do give him praise for telling me, but I also suggested that he start to tell me things a bit sooner next time.  So Steven and I went and purchased a new mattress for his bed today.  It is a cheapie Big Lots mattress, but will have to do until we can figure something else out.  (The mattress he had has been through all 3 kids.  It was the mattress on Joshua's toddler bed when he moved from the crib.)

Then I get to work and it's so slow that they send me home 3 hours early.  (I could really use the money.)  Steven and I go buy a mattress and my tire pressure light comes on.  We go put air in the tires and drive home.  The light is still on.  I remembered that my brake light is out (yes, on my new van!), so we went BACK to QT and got MORE air for the tires and stopped at Auto Zone to get a new bulb for my brake light.  GOOD NEWS....I, myself, changed the bulb in the brake light!

All this to say that God uses these days to help us realize just how much we need Him.  Now, I'm not a sappy Christian, one that cries a lot or is just overcome and overwhelmed by the things of God (only sometimes), but He said something to me today.

I heard a song on 104.7 The Fish on my way to work by Mandisa called "Overcomer".   I listened to the words, realized that it was speaking to me somewhat, acknowledged it, and went about my day.  3 hours later, I get back into my car to drive home from work (realize, this is a 5 minute drive for me), and the SAME song came on.  Here are the words:

Staring at a stop sign
Watching people drive by
T Mac on the radio
Got so much on your mind
Nothing's really going right
Looking for a ray of hope

Whatever it is you may be going through
I know He's not gonna let it get the best of you

You're an overcomer
Stay in the fight ‘til the final round
You're not going under
‘Cause God is holding you right now
You might be down for a moment
Feeling like it's hopeless
That's when He reminds You
That you're an overcomer
You're an overcomer

Everybody's been down
Hit the bottom, hit the ground
Oh, you're not alone
Just take a breath, don't forget
Hang on to His promises
He wants You to know

The same Man, the Great I am
The one who overcame death
Is living inside of You
So just hold tight, fix your eyes
On the one who holds your life
There's nothing He can't do
He's telling You

I hear you, God.  I hear you.  Thanks and I'll try to remember that next time and not let it get the best of me.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

I Must Be Crazy!

My oldest son, Joshua (lovingly known now as JJ), turned 13 last week.  Yes, a teenager.  My first of my very own.  Today we had a birthday party for him. I took him and 5 other 12 and 13 year olds for 2 hours of bowling and then back to my house (yes, my house) for pizza. "How bad could it be?", I figured.  The problem is, I expect every boy to behave like my son.  They don't!

Joshua can definitely be weird and crazy.  He likes being known as a clown.  But nothing compared to what I witnessed today.  I guess some parents just don't teach their kids how to behave in public places or when they are with other people.  One kids was just out of control.  I had to speak to him many times for sitting on and in the ball return rack, lying on the floor with the ball, attempting to bounce it, adding butter to his cup of water, and (the real kicker) trying to enter the "above 21" area of the bowling area where they allow drinking and smoking.  I finally had to grab him by the arm and explain to him that he was old enough to control himself and behave appropriately in a public setting. He wouldn't even look at me.  I am still in shock.

I have often thought that my problem is that I expect too much from my kids.  However, especially after today, I realize that the REAL problem is that other parents don't expect enough from their kids.  At 12 years old, they should be able to control themselves in public and show respect for other people and property.  I guess some parents just don't teach their kids that.  Maybe it's too hard and they meet with too much resistance.  But I think it is necessary and that is part of what is truly lacking in today's kids.

Anyway.......Joshua had a great time with his friends and I'm glad.  That was the whole point anyway.  Though there will probably not be anymore birthday parties for a while, if ever.  I'm just not cut out for that.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

A typical Sunday

I have a confession to make.  I haven't been to church in over a month.  No, I haven't turned away from Jesus.  My new job made me choose a weekend day to work and I chose Sunday.  I didn't want to choose either, but Sunday just made the most practical sense.  Saturdays are baseball days.  With Steven coaching Zach's team and Joshua playing at a totally different park, we are going to have to divide and conquer this season more than ever.  As a compromise, I am listening to Pastor Steve's podcasts in my car while I waiting to pick up the kids at school.  Also, I'm going to start going to a women's Bible study at church this Wednesday (my other day off.  Maybe God did that on purpose...) so I will have some fellowship.  I've talked to my job about getting afternoon or evening Sunday hours, but nothing yet.  I'm low man on the totem pole right now, but maybe that will change one day.

Joshua and Zach both had their first baseball games of the season this weekend.  And, of course, they were at two different parks at EXACTLY the same time.  As much as I hated missing Zach's first game in a while, Steven was with him (coaching) so Elijah and I took JJ to his game.  We dropped him off at 8 for warm ups, then Elijah and I went to breakfast at CFA.  I love spending time with my kids one on  one.  He still just wanted to talk about WWE, but I engaged him as much as I could.  I just love him!

Joshua started off in right field, which made me laugh.  He hasn't played outfield in a while.  Then he played 1st base the next inning.  That's more his spot.  After the other team got 3 runs and the bases were loaded (from several walks) they called JJ in to pitch.  These times always make me nervous.  No one will be harder on JJ than JJ if he allows those runners to score.  But, somehow, he goes out there very cool and gets the job done, as he did that morning.  (I wonder how Craig Kimbrel's mom does it???)  He pitched the following inning as well and did great!  We lost the game, but more on errors that poor pitching.  The mound is farther from the plate in this league and he was still able to bring it.  I'm so proud of him.  (And he will be 13 this Saturday.  Can you believe that?!?!?!?)

Zach lost his game as well, but Steven said they fought hard.  Zach got to pitch.  He struck out 5 batters!  I wish I could have seen that!  He has another game on Friday so I will watch that one.  Elijah chose not to play baseball this season.  He didn't like getting hit by the pitches.  (With his SPD, it's just that much worse for him.)  And he's a lefty so that usually puzzles 7-8 year old pitchers since he's on the other side of the batter's box.  I didn't force it.  Even though I would secretly LOVE for him to become a pitcher.  Lefties are hard to come by.

So the running around begins.  Practices for both Zach and JJ (and JJ's travel team will want to be practicing too so we'll try to squeeze some of those in there), games, school functions, work, homework, etc.  Here's to craziness........

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Sheer Frustration

I love my kids.  I really do.  They are sweet, smart, loving and friendly.  And they each love their mama.  I wouldn't trade any of them for anything in the world.  However, that doesn't change the fact that they can frustrate the fool out of me.

Like I said, each of them is very smart, but they can behave so stupidly at times. Bill Cosby said children were brain damaged.  I'm beginning to think he was right.  Perhaps I expect too much of my kids.  Perhaps I expect them to think through things like an adult and they aren't there yet.  I'm not sure.  Maybe instead of working on them, I need to work on me.

One thing tonight was just the fact that Joshua wanted to tell about something that Roddy White (Falcons football player) was tweeting.  The only reason this bothers me is because I can't get him to talk to me about school, his friends, etc.  But he's more that willing to talk about what football players are tweeting or what WWE superstars are doing out of the ring.  I guess I should just be happy that he's talking to me.  After all, he will be a teenager is just over a week.

 Again, maybe it's my expectations that need to change.....

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Julian Hospital

It doesn't happen often.  My kids don't get sick much.  But 2 of the 3 have been sick, with fevers, in the last 8 days.  Elijah missed a day of school last week and Zach missed today.  It's strange.  Elijah's only lasted a day, but Zach spent yesterday sleeping and still had a fever today.  He is getting to an age where missing school means getting behind.  I just hope he can catch up sufficiently.  He isn't doing so well in school so far.

All is quiet on the rest of the home front.  Rec baseball starts this weekend.  Zach has a game Saturday morning.  We've yet to receive Joshua's schedule, which irritates me just a bit.  They must think that we have no lives and no other plans to make.  Joshua turns 13 next week and I'm trying to plan a party.  However, without knowing if he has a game or not, it's very hard.  I've been putting it off so that his party wouldn't interfere with anyone's games.  But they are really pushing it.  I'm hoping to know tomorrow.

Friday marked my last day at work at Coolray Field.  I quit a few weeks ago after getting the job at Medieval Times.  I just couldn't do both, and didn't really want to.  However, they asked me to work the last two games, so I agreed.  It was bittersweet.  I walked away Friday night after clearing the suits for the last time.  I walked to my car and saw the fans standing by the clubhouse entrances waiting for autographs.  It was then that I realized I was walking away for the last time.  I have worked there for 5 years and loved most every minute of it.  I loved being so close to and involved with the game.  I loved getting to know the players and cheering for them when they made it to the bigs.  I loved being one of the only people to know who they were when they got there.  I love the people I work with.  It was a difficult decision to leave.  Those people have been like family to me.  ("My summer family" per Ben in Fever Pitch)  And so many people would love to have my job.  I just couldn't do it anymore.  So I left.  I will have to make a special effort to get to games next year so that I still know who's playing.

I still love baseball and will continue to follow it.  I will still plan vacations to various baseball stadiums around the country. we come!