Smile for the Joy of Others

Smile for the Joy of Others

Friday, June 29, 2007


Yesterday, we got up and went to the Y and then we played at the waterpark. Which made for a pretty busy and playful day. Needless to say, the boys were "pooped" when we got home. I got BB out of the car first and before I could get CB and our multiple bags of Y and waterpark necessities out of the car, I found BB in his room:

They both took a 3 hour nap.

Until next time, sleep tight, HB

Chicken Enchiladas

1 T. butter
1/2 cup chopped onions
1/2 t. garlic powder
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 (4 0z) can green chiles
1 T. taco powder
1/2 c. sour cream
1 1/2 c. cubed, cooked chicken
1/4 c. milk
flour tortillas
1 c. shredded Cheddar cheese

Spray a 9 x 13 baking dish with Pam. Preheat oven to 350. Melt butter in pan and cook onions until tender. Add garlic powder, green chiles, soup, taco powder, and sour cream. Mix well. Reserve 3/4 of the sauce and set aside. To the remaining sauce, add the chicken and half of the cheese. Stir together. Fill tortillas with chicken mixture and place seam down in baking dish. Add milk to the rest of the sauce; pour over tortillas and top with cheese. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until cheese is bubbly.

Note: You know I hate onions, so I left them out. Also, i did not add the green chiles because I was afraid that it would make the dish too spicy for the boys. The whole family loved this recipe. Even BB ate it and you know if he likes it, it must be good. I served the great Mexican side dish of...........sweet potatoe fries. Not, refried beans, not mexican/spanish rice, not pico de gallo but sweet potatoe fries. I am the only one who will eat any of the before mentioned so being out numbered, sweet potatoe fries it was.

Rate: * * * * * (5 stars)

Bon Appetite, HB

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Let Mamma in, Please!!!!

I walked out to check the mail, as usual, leaving 2 faces pressed up against our glass storm door watching me the whole way. Got the mail, turned around to see the 2 faces still staring at me. Got to the door only to find it LOCKED!!! I knew the boys would rebel someday, but not at 23 months and to the point of locking their mother out of the house. "Open the door for mommy, please." "Let mamma in, please." To no avail. They just stood there looking at me saying, "Mamma, Mamma, outside?"

Well, the garage door was down, so I couldn't go through it. I tried unsuccessfully to open the 2 wooden gates that went to the backyard. The doors have aged and warped from the sun and are just about near impossible to open (at least they are for me). We have 2 doors in the backyard--one opens to our bedroom and the other opens into the garage. I knew the door to our bedroom was locked but was unsure about the one to the garage. What did it matter, I couldn't get back there regardless. And I sure can't climb a 6 foot wooden privacy fence.

Fortunately, my neighbor was home. And on any other given day, she wouldn't have been. After checking on the boys and finding them still standing at the door peering out with a look like "mission accomplished", I trekked across the yard to the neighbors.

I told her my situation. To which she replied, "Honey, you need a spare key to keep outside". I simply responded, "Yes, Mam".

"May I use your phone?"

"Sure." "Come right on in.".

Ring, Ring, Ring, Ring...."Hello."

"Daddy, where are you?"

"In the middle of the reservoir fishing, whatcha need, HB?"

"The boys have locked me out of the house and I can't get back in."

"You're kidding, right?"

"No, daddy, I'm not. Wish I was, but I'm not." "Besides, I wouldn't kidd about something this embarrassing, daddy."

"I'll be right there, but it will take me at least 20 minutes to get back to my truck and then I have to load the boat...I'll be as quick as I can. Oh wait, maybe Merrill will let me take his truck. Just give me some time, I'll be there."

"Thank you, daddy."

I told my neighbor that my daddy was on his way but that it would be few minutes because he was in the middle of reservoir. "Well, why don't you call your husband, maybe he can get here quicker?"

To which I embarrassingly replied, "I don't know his work number, he just started a new job and his number is on my caller ID, so I just scroll to the number and press 'Talk'. I haven't memorized it yet."

"Well does he have a cell phone number you can call?"

Again with embarrassment, "He is at lunch right now and I don't know that number either. It's also on my Caller ID and do the same for it, just scroll to it and press 'talk'"

I told her that I was sooo embarrassed and that I was sorry to bother her, to which she replied, "Don't worry about it, my kids locked me out plenty of times." Now, I must stop here and ponder this response. As embarrassed as I was, I certainly wouldn't have admitted to being locked out "plenty of times". Also, at what number of times that you have been locked out do realize that it may be a re-occurring problem. I don't anticipate this happening again, maybe once more, but not "plenty of times." Anyway, Brian, if you are reading this, you should be ashamed.

She insisted that we try to get the gates open. And thanks to her persistence, we did...well, she did. And luckily the back door to the garage was unlocked and I was able to get into the house through the garage/kitchen door.

There the 2 schemers were, each sitting in a chair in the den. When I walked in they both got down and ran to me while holding their arms out saying..."mail, mail, mail". Nope, not "mamma, we are sorry" or "so glad to see you". They were more interested in the junk mail than the welfare of their mother.

Until next time, be sure and keep your doors unlocked (thought I would never say that one), HB

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Who Needs A Movie with Dinner When....

you've got entertainment like this:

Supper is always an adventure around here and never boring. There tends to be a circus act every night. Whether it's food flying from one side of the table to other, faces made at each other, or face painting with whatever food that was served. What happens is, one of the boys will do something that makes the other laugh. So of course, the laughter only encourages more action. There is also alot of "monkey see, monkey do" at the table. And then there is "monkey get in trouble too" or in our case, "monkeys get in trouble two".

JB and I try to keep a sense of humor during supper and not let it become a frustrating experience every night. However, there are nights when it does get frustrating especially when you are trying to balance discipline with a pleasant eating experience. We don't want the boys to think they can perform their circus acts and not learn manners and appropriate behavior at the dinner table, especially when we have guests or out in public. Oh well, at least this entertainment is free.

Until next time...."Step right up folks, step right up...come enjoy the Brothers Bond Supper Circus....HB

Cheesy Chicken

4 chicken breast, halved
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 large can evaporated milk
1 1/2 cups grated cheese

Dip chicken in melted butter and roll in flour. Place in baking dish and cook for 30 minutes at 350; turn and cook another 15 minutes. Mix other ingredients together and pour over chicken. Bake another 15 minutes.

Note: Melted 1 stick of butter but probably could have only used 3/4 stick.

JB, CB, and I enjoyed it. BB just sucked the sauce off each piece of chicken and then spit the chicken out.

Rating: * * * (3 stars)

Bon Appetite, HB

Sunday, June 24, 2007

My Concerns, Conflicts, and Comments

As with my previous blog You Decide, this will be mostly understood by those who attend the same church as I. And for those members, you know that today and tonight wrapped up the Vision Team's presentation and proposals of possible changes for the church.

I must say that the Team has worked hard these past 9 months to prepare for this month of presentations. I recognize the sacrifice each member made in order to fulfill the call of the Vision Team. And for this, I am personally grateful. I know it required alot of emotion, prayer, commitment, discipline and character.

This blog is strictly my Concerns, Conflicts, and Comments along with encouragement. This blog is NO way intended to politicize the proposals. I will not try to convince anyone to vote a certain way. It is up to you as an individual to vote what you feel is God's will...not based on my or any other's opinion.

Now on to the proposals:

1. Change the requirements of membership. A prospect must complete a 12 week class before obtaining membership. These classes will educate prospects on what it truly means to be a church member and Christian...fellowship, worship, discipleship, tithing, spiritual gifts, evangelism, etc. ----I have many concerns and conflicts regarding this proposal. I also believe there are many questions that have gone unanswered. I believe this By-law has the potential of becoming legalistic in order for it to be enforced. Will the prospect have to complete all 12 classes or will there be a percentage that must be completed? Do you deny membership because the prospect failed to complete all 12 or the required percentage? Never mind the legalistic point of view, I believe 12 classes is entirely too many. JB and I have not been able to attend 4 Sunday's in a row, much less try to attend 12. I think 12 classes will be discouraging to prospects in that they may feel it's impossible to commit; therefor, they will either not do it all or fail at meeting all 12. I do think this has the potential of setting prospects up to fail if all 12 classes are required. There are certainly many more questions that I have but not enough time nor space to type all. Plus you as the reader will become bored. I personally not feel this is what is best for my church. My biggest conflict and concern is this... The church can ultimately deny membership because someone doesn't want to or hasn't completed a 12 week class. However, I do agree with the vision and reason for these classes. I do believe that our church needs to implement some type of classes in order to make church members aware of what it means to be a member and a Christian. A member is expected to do more than just sit on pew every Sunday morning and evening and to serve is some capacity either in the church or community. I am very much in agreement that the church members should be expected to serve. However, I don't feel that making this a requirement to become a member is the means to do it.

2. Make Children and Youth Ministry a primary focus of our church. That change would entail the following: a). Renovations of 2nd and 3rd floors to accommodate this change and curriculum. b). Move Adult Small Groups (Sunday Schools) to Sunday evening and Wednesday evenings. I am all for improving our children's ministry. As JB says, we should do what it takes to ensure that our children get the best spiritual ministry offered at our church. I love the curriculum that they have proposed and hope it is voted through. I am not too thrilled about our Sunday School class meeting on Sunday nights. And I am afraid that our age group will suffer due to the volunteers needed for the children's activities and preschool ministry. Sunday school will be changed to the evening allowing us to serve on Sunday morning and yet still maintain a small group fellowship. As you members know, right now there are not enough volunteers because alot of us don't want to give up our small group fellowship. This fellowship is greatly needed for us to grow spiritually and in other Christian relationships. I am concerned that we will also ultimately have to serve again on Sunday nights and Wednesday nights in order to accommodate the children's and preschool ministries offered at that time. Therefore, we are faced with the same situation we are in now, either not enough volunteers or we will not be able to have a small group because we are volunteering in these ministries again at night in order to make them successful. Not only will our regular, committed members suffer from this consequence but if our small groups do not grow or ultimately dissipate, the new members and new Christians will not have a small group to attend for their spiritual growth. However, I am willing to try to make it work for the sake of my children. And pray hard that God changes people's hearts in order for this to work. It will take those without children to volunteer in order for us, young adults to continue with our small group.

3. Create a Vision Implementation team and Community Impact Team. Hooray for this! I don't have many concerns or conflicts with this proposal. I think both are very much needed and I hope to be apart in some capacity. However, I do have a concern that with all the service projects that will come from these teams, the members may become "stretched too thin". In that, if the majority of the young adults are already serving in the children's and preschool ministries, it will not leave alot of time for us to serve elsewhere. Now I know, that just because someone has children does not automatically qualify them to work with children. I don't want someone who is not gifted to work with children have to work in the children's ministry. You are not doing a good service to God, the children or yourself. So maybe these outreach services are for you, especially if you feel that you do not "fit" in a ministry within the church. I know alot of people who work better with hands (building, painting, roofing, sweeping, yard work, etc) than they work with people directly. However I do feel that if the parents are serving both Sunday morning, Sunday evening, and Wednesday evening, it does not leave much opportunity for them to serve outside the church.

4. Construct Guest Welcome Center in the foyer of the church. Hooray, again. I believe it is very much needed. My only concern is that we have enough volunteers who really educate themselves on the ministries of the church and can give direction to visitors.

I hope I haven't bored you with useless information. And I pray that you will vote God's will and not your own. If you, the reader, feel that this blog was politicized to "sell" you on an idea, it was NOT my intention. I do not judge those who differ from my opinion or who vote differently. I just ask that you vote prayerfully and not apathetically.

The Terror Chamber BKA The Car Wash

This blog is an "oldie" from Myspace. This was originally written in March:

Today after working out at the Y, I stopped to fill my car with gas. There was a car wash at the gas station and I thought it was a good day to use it.
I was not prepared for what would happen in and during the car wash. And by prepared I mean I didn't have any ear plugs or valium. From the time the wash started til it ended, the boys screamed in terror. And I mean SCREAMED!!! It was awful.

What probably took 5 minutes felt like eternity. I left with a headache and terrorized kids, oh yeah, and a clean car that was not worth it.
I'll know better next time. Take ear plugs for me and valium for the kids. Just kidding, I wouldn't intentionally terrorize my kids nor drug them. There won't be a next time with them in the car.

Until next time, HB

Update: Til this day, we have not been through a car wash. I almost attempted the other day, but realized I didn't have any ear plugs in the car.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

1 Month Anniversary

I told ya'll that I would keep you updated on JB's new job. Well, today was his 1 month anniversary.

So far, he has been given the responsibility of enhancing the sales training curriculum and presentation along with the new employee orientation. Today he presented his new ideas for both to his supervisor. According to JB, she was very impressed and excited about the new ideas. Because she approved, he now has the opportunity to present the enhancements to the whole Human Resource Department and will soon have the opportunity to also present the new enhancement ideas to Executive Management.

After he presents his new ideas to all the necessary people, he will then be responsible of implementing the new sales training and orientation. Therefore, he will probably be the one teaching the sales training curriculum and facilitating the new employee orientation.

JB has also been given the responsibility of creating the Human Resources' procedures manual. This entails meeting with all department managers in order to learn each one's policies and procedures. He will then compile these policies and procedures into each department's own manual.

As you can see, he will be very busy with his new job. JB is enjoying his new role at his new job. Thanks for your prayers as we have embarked on this new path of our lives. We both feel God has blessed us greatly.

Until next time, HB

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

How to handle Telemarketers and Junk Mail

I was cleaning out my "forwards" folder in my email box and ran across this forward that I received about 1 year ago. Thought I would share with you. Some of you may have already read this or received it from me.

Real quick, because I will be posting recipes, there may be more than one "posts" on a given day. I don't intend for the recipes to take the place of my "life" stories.

Tips for Handling Telemarketers:

Three Little Words That Work !!
(1)The three little words are: "Hold On, Please... "Saying this, while putting down your phone and walking off (instead of hanging-up immediately) would make each telemarketing call so much more time-consuming that boiler room sales would grind to a halt. Then when you eventually hear the phone company's "beep-beep-beep" tone, you know it's time to go back and hang up your handset, which has efficiently completed its task.These three little words will help eliminate telephone soliciting.

(2) Do you ever get those annoying phone calls with no one on the
other end? This is a telemarketing technique where a machine makes phone calls and records the time of day when a person answers the phone. This technique is used to determine the best time of day for a "real" sales person to call back and get someone at home. What you can do after answering, if you notice there is no one there, is to immediately start hitting your # button on the phone, 6 or 7 times, as quickly as possible. This confuses the machine that dialed the call and it kicks your number out of their system. Gosh, what a shame not to have your name in their system any longer !!!

Junk Mail Help:

When you get "ads" enclosed with your phone or utility bill, return these "ads" with your payment. Let the sending companies throw their own junk mail away.

When you get those "pre-approved" letters in the mail for everything from credit cards to 2nd mortgages and similar type junk, do not throw
away the return envelope. Most of these come with postage-paid return envelopes, right? It costs them more than the regular 39 cents postage "IF" and when they receive them back. It costs them nothing if you throw them away! The postage was around 50 cents before the last increase and it is according to the weight. In that case, why not get rid of some of your other junk mail and put it in these cool little, postage-paid return envelopes.

One of Andy Rooney's (60 minutes) ideas. Send an ad for your local chimney cleaner to American Express. Send a pizza coupon to Citibank. If you didn't get anything else that day, then just send them their blank application back! If you want to remain anonymous, just make sure your name isn't on anything you send them. You can even send the envelope back empty if you want to just to keep them guessing! It still costs them 39 cents.

The banks and credit card companies are currently getting a lot of their own junk back in the mail, but folks, we need to OVERWHELM them. Let's let them know what it's like to get lots of junk mail, and best of all, they're paying for it...Twice! Let's help keep our postal service busy since they are saying that e-mail is cutting into their business profits, and that's why they need to increase postage costs again.

I have actually done some to these. It's pretty fun returning the junk mail to its rightful owner. As soon as I receive the junk mail, I turn right back around and put the postage paid envelope filled with their junk in the mail box

Until next time, HB

Barbequed Chicken

1 broiler-fryer chicken about 3 lbs., cut up
1/2 cup BBQ sauce
2 T lemon juice
1/2 t Italian Seasoning
1/4 t garlic powder

Mix ingredients and pour over chicken. Bake at 400 until done, about 1 hour.

Note: I had only chicken quarters that worked just as well. Also, this recipe can be used for grilling. Instead of pouring sauce over chicken, brush the BBQ sauce mixture over chicken as needed while grilling. Also, I added about 1/2 packet of dry Italian Dressing mix to add a little kick. You can probably use this recipe for pork chops, also.

This definitely faired better than my fried chicken quarters that I blogged about several days ago (Transformer or IED?). JB said he really liked it, CB ate it, however, BB ate just a little (he is definitely his father's son, in that, he is a very picky eater).

Rating: 4 stars * * * *

Until next time, Yum! Yum! HB

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Pleasant Pork Chops

6 pork chops
salt and pepper to taste
3 T butter
1 onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
3/4 cup chicken broth
1 bay leaf
1 cup sour cream
2 t paprika

Saute onion and garlic in hot butter. Remove from skillet. Trim excess fat from chops and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Brown chops in skillet; pour off fat. Lower heat, add bay leaf and chicken broth. Cook covered over low heat for 1 hour. Transfer chops to a serving plate, but keep them hot. Heat juices in skillet and reduce to half. Add the sour cream, onion-garlic mixture and paprika, blending thoroughly. Heat through, but don't boil. Pour over chops and serve.

Note: For those who know me best, you know I hate onions. I did not use onions but still sauteed the garlic according to the recipe. I added onion powder to the sour cream sauce. Also, because I did not have any paprika and because paprika can tend to a little spicy, I added Season All to taste instead. JB and I really liked this recipe. BB didn't care for it, but CB couldn't get enough of the "shops". Hope you enjoy.

Also, you could probably use chicken breasts with this recipe.

Rating: 3 stars

Until next time, HB

Hey Good-Lookin', Whatcha got Cookin?

If you are like me, you may get tired of cooking the same thing over and over again for supper. So I am gonna start trying new recipes in order to expand my supper menu. I am also gonna start posting these new recipes for my fellow mothers who experience the same redundancy in cooking. And those who know me best, you know I don't necessarily enjoy spending long hours in the kitchen. So the recipes I use will be what I consider easy, quick and family friendly. I hope you enjoy the recipe posts. And if you try them, you are welcome to leave a comment or rating for other readers. Also, if you have any that you would like to share with me, please, please, please pass them along.

I am gonna rate each new recipe on a scale of 1 to 5 according to my taste. You may fix the recipe and have a different opinion so feel free to leave your rating as well. 1 being not good, will not fix it again---5 being wonderful, excellent, delicious (you get the point).

Until next time, Bon appetite, HB

Monday, June 18, 2007

Happy Father's Day!

I know yesterday was Father's Day, but I didn't get the chance to post. I did not have the opportunity to get a card for JB from the boys nor me, so we just made our own Sunday morning. The boys and I didn't make it church Sunday morning because CB has a nasty runny nose and hacking cough. Didn't think his Sunday School teachers would appreciate it if I brought him there in that condition. I wouldn't like it if I were the teacher. Anyway, another blog, another day.

I had the boys color on a piece of paper and then i "stamped" their hand prints on the paper using some blue paint. It was messy and but the boys enjoyed "finger painting" and JB loved his cards. He said they were more meaningful than a store bought. As for a gift for JB, it is a work in progress at the moment.

The afternoon was spent relaxing at the house. We went to my parents' that evening for some grilled steaks, corn on the cob, Garlic Shrimp pasta (which I proudly proclaim to have made!), baked mashed potatoes, apple pie, and of course ice cream.
My sister and her family were also there. We all enjoyed each other's company and celebrating our fathers.

I hope all the fathers I know had a wonderful day. They certainly deserve the recognition and not just for one day but throughout the whole year. I must recognize the 3 fathers that were represented last night. JB goes to work everyday and works hard so that I can stay home with our boys. He sacrifices much in order for us to have a fulfilling life. My brother-in-law, Ryan, does the same. He works hard in order for my sister to stay home with her girls. My dad worked hard everyday. Although, my mom still had to work to help support the family, my dad's hard work allowed her to only work part-time. My mom was home everyday by 1:30. All 3 of these dad's recognize the importance of a mother, in that, they sacrificed and worked hard in order for us moms to care for our children. They show love to us through sacrifice, hard work, and their commitment to their family. God has truly blessed with great husbands and fathers.

Until next time, let us not forget the importance of a father,

Friday, June 15, 2007

You decide...

To the readers of this blog who do not attend my church, this may not interest you nor will you probably understand what I am talking about. I will try to explain the best that I can without making this blog too long and boring. If you do attend my church, then you will know exactly what I am talking about and I hope you read with an open heart and mind.

As my fellow church members are well aware of, our church is proposing several changes concerning the future of our church. Throughout the month of June, the "Vision Team" will be presenting the proposed changes during our worship time on Sunday mornings.

I would first like to say that if you are reading this blog and are a fellow church member, I hope you will understand the seriousness of the need to attend these presentations and furthermore attend the Sunday night services to have any questions, concerns, or comments addressed in order to fully understand in detail what these changes will entail. As a church member, it is our responsibility to fulfill these duties and futhermore is expected of you whether you agree or disagree with the changes. And though you may feel that these changes will not effect you directly or personally, it is not an excuse to be apathetic.

This blog is to encourage my fellow members to be involved with the process of the changes. I pray and ask that everyone vote according to what they truly believe is God's will for the future of our church. I do not believe it is right to vote out of indifference, apathy, or just because and if that is the case, it is better that you not vote at all. You need to truly search out what you believe to be God's will. I don't believe that a vote of yes or no is wrong when you vote out of sincerity.

Don't vote yes or no because it's the "popular" vote. Be confident in your own decision. Don't merely go with the flow, sometimes we have to go against the flow in order to follow God's will. And be prideful of what you feel is God's will whether others may agree or disagree with you.

Don't vote no merely because you don't like change. Christ expects us to emerge from our comfort zone. He created change when He did away with Old Testament law. Search out why you believe yes or no. Have a reason for your vote.

Don't vote yes or no out of spite. There are some people who will literally vote no because they don't like the person(s) who developed the idea or presenting the change. There are others who will vote yes out of spite towards those who don't want change. "I'll make them change, regardless." This is a very un-Christ like attitude and is the product of a hard heart.

Don't vote out of ignorance. Vote out of knowledge. Learn the details of the change. Learn the advantages and disadvantages. Learn what Christ has to say about the changes. Be educated enough that you can vote with a clear conscience.

Don't vote for the reason of "just because". Know why you believe the way you are voting. When someone asks what your opinion is you should not have to hesitate in telling them if you can tell them why. One may not agree with your vote but it's easier to understand where you are coming from if you can give that person a reason. It creates a better understanding and mutual respect of your fellow members.

And please don't not vote because you believe your vote will not matter nor count. This is a total lie and in truth of this is your responsibility and expectation as a church member to vote.

Whether you believe it or not, whether you care enough about it or not, whether you accept it or not...the changes or lack of changes will affect the church as a whole and you as an individual member now and in the future.

Please take pride in your church. Please care enough to be informed and learn enough about the changes in order to fulfill your responsibility and expectation as a church member.

Until next time, HB

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Finally, Parents being Parents

Unlike my last post, I have no problems with posting this one. We went to the water park yesterday and again had another incident but was so much more positive than last Friday's.

Let me explain why these seem to keep happening. CB loves the slide, as I have mentioned before. However, he is only 22 months old and doesn't slide like the 3 and 4 year olds. He tends to take his time and compared to the time of the older kids, it's a little slower. Well, in this particular incident the older child pushed CB on down the slide "to get him out of the way". This caused CB to land a little harder than he is used to, but nothing to the extreme as last Friday where he ended up being held under water.

This child's mother was at the bottom of the slide with the rest of us and immediately disciplined her child and and repeatedly apologized to me. You see, I wasn't mad at the child or the situation because his mother took care of it. She proceeded to take him over to their designated area and make him sit in time out. She scolded him by telling him that we do not treat our "friends" that way no matter what the reason. She then came back over and apologized again. Furthermore, before her child could get back into the water she made him apologize to CB and me.

I thanked her for being an involved and attentive parent. And actually carried on a conversation the remaining of our time there.

This situation did my heart good in that it gave me a glimpse of hope that there are still some concerned parents out there.

Until next time, HB

Saturday, June 9, 2007

My 30 minutes of Fame

Let me begin by saying that I am conflicted as to whether or not I should even blog about this particular incident for several reasons. First, it can come across as a way of justifying my actions, 2nd--some may think that it is not an appropriate situation to publish to the world and 3rd--I risk "giving the wrong impressions" to you as readers because the situation may difficult to explain with words.

With all that being said, let me explain why I have ultimately decided to blog about the incident. If you recall in the very first blog ever I wrote (There's a first time of everything), I told ya'll that I am a realist and that I will write from a realist point of view. I also told you that I will write about about our life. When deciding to blog I promised myself not to make this blogging experience all about the "good in our life" nor was I gonna make my blogs superficial. The incident that I will be writing about only proves my promise. Our life is not always "peachy keen" and I certainly will not make it appear to be. The greatest compliments that I receive through emails and from ya'll in person is this..."I love reading your blogs because I can so relate to them as a mother and wife." "You say what most feel and experience as a mother and wife." "I enjoy reading your real life stories." Well in keeping to my real life, this blog is about an incident that happened last Friday at the local water park. I must tell you, that I will be most honest in this story as well as in my feelings about the responsibilities of being a mother. Another words, "I am gonna tell it like it is" and I will not keep from stepping on toes.

This past Friday, we went to the local water park for a few hours of fun. And as the last time we were there, CB enjoyed the slide while BB enjoyed staying in one spot and playing with the water toys.

CB was sliding on the slide and I was at the bottom to catch him and move him along so that he would get out of the way of other sliders and to make sure he didn't go head first into water. Although, he loves the slide, he doesn't just fly down, he tends to scoot down with his feet so he isn't going very fast. Regardless, I still feel the need to be at the bottom.

As CB was sliding, there were 2 older boys, 3 and 4 years old that were being extremely rough to the point of that the life guard had to basically give most of his attention to just these 2 making it hard for him to watch the rest of the area. These boys continued to defy the lifeguard by running, jumping on the slide, pushing others, and blatant disregard to the rules. He asked one of the boys where his mother was to which the child replied "at home". And before the lifeguard could get any more info from him, he took off running again. The lifeguard finally told the 2 that one more incident, they were gonna be kicked out of the pool. This had been going on since the boys arrived which was about 20 minutes. In their running and jumping on the slide, one of the boys "slammed" into their little sister causing her to go head first into the water. She of course came up coughing, gagging, and gasping for air. And again before the lifeguard could get to them, they were gone again doing the same thing.

Only this time, they "slammed" into CB causing him to go head first into the water except this time, the boy landed on top of CB causing him to be held under water. I immediately and with force, grabbed the kid by the arm throw him out of the way in order to get CB. I then grabbed the kids arm and with a loud voice, told him that he was going to have to stop or the rest of play time would not be pleasant. I admit, I was furious. Meanwhile, CB is crying, coughing, gagging and gasping for air.

At this point, what appeared to be the kid's mother came over and proceeded to literally get in my face and tell me with very explicit language, that I had no right to touch her child. Now I was a mad mother bear by this time. She continued to cuss me and call me every name in the book. I will not even use the abbreviations to described what she called me--use your imagination.

Let me stop at this point and tell you that I prayed the quickest prayer ever: "Lord put the words in my mouth and nudge me when I have said enough."

When she was finally finished with her face still in mine, I responded "Are you through?" To which she replied, "Yeah, what have you got say now, you ----". I told her that I was gonna do what it takes to protect my child and if she didn't like the way I handled it, she needed to get off her butt and get over here and tend to her own children." The lifeguard proceeded to inform her that he had been dealing with her children for the past 20 minutes and they were just about to be kicked out of the pool.

The girl continued to yell explicits and threaten me. At this time, I continued to reply...That I would do it again if I had to and that she was not gonna intimidate me with her threats. I told her again, to get her butt off the lounge chair and the towel off her head and deal with her kids or I was gonna do what it takes when their behavior effected my children.

As she continued to threaten and yell explicits, 2 more lifeguards came over and my sister came over to "take up for me." When my sister came over and began to tell her that if she hit me she was gonna be dealing with 2 problems. Of course, the girl got more defensive and began to yell explicits at my sister and threaten her also. And to the girl's defense, she probably felt "ganged up on". She didn't know Tiffany was my sister and for all she thought, it was none of Tiffany's business.

I got Tiffany away from her and told Tiffany that the girl was not worth this much trouble and let the lifeguards handle her. As Tiffany and I walked off, she continued to yell explicits (remember, this is all in front of other children and parents). She yeld that she was "badder" than us and that she wasn't gonna "back down from nobody". To which I replied to her in a very calm voice..."Do you mean badder as in a tough, white trash sort of way...because this is what you are turning this situation into. and if that is what you mean, sister, you can have that's not competition I wanted to compete in".

By this time the lifeguards were doing their best to calm her down. And I was amazingly calm. I didn't have a shaken nerve in me. I honestly know God kept me calm and my words clean. I never used and explicit word with her; however, the temptation was there and the words at the tip of my tongue but I literally couldn't speak them. And I admit, I was fighting mad, I was mad enough to hit and my voice was raised even until the comment I mentioned above.

Let me stop again and tell you that BB at this point was now upset by the situation and there were no kids sliding on the slide. I don't know if the lifeguards stopped the sliding until all was calm or the other moms took there kids out to ensure their safety.

As the lifeguards were talking to her, Tiffany and I were calm and proceeded to play. I had to calm the boys down but they soon were fine. However, there was a sort of silence amongst the parents for about 10 minutes. There were 2 mothers that were sitting beside us that told us "thank you" for finally doing something. One informed us that the kids were there earlier during the week and were just as disruptive. I apologized to the 2 mothers for the display that their children had witnessed. However, I did not feel that I had said anything wrong nor did I feel that I had compromised my witness as a Christian.

Apparently whatever the lifeguards told her only made her angrier. For the remaining hour that we were there, her children never got back in the water. And as I watched her deal with them, I sincerely felt sorry for her. She was had a hard time dealing with them because they continued to be disruptive while sitting in the chairs as she tried to soak up more sun. She disciplined them by pinching them, hitting them and even dragged one of them off to where she could not be seen, leaving the 3 and 2 year olds there by themselves. When she returned the child was crying and she was still yelling.

At one point, she came over and spoke to one of the mothers sitting next to us. I didn't know at the time what she was saying but later learned.

During that remaining hour, I felt a strong sense of conviction to apologize to her. Not for what I said or how I reacted, mind you...I would still do the same thing again if need be...but rather for the whole incident. I struggled so hard whether or not I should let it go or approach her not knowing if she would "start up" again with me. But I felt the Lord remind me that Christ approached his enemies in love and that I was to do the same. So here I go. I asked Tiffany to watch the boys while I went to apologize.

I took off my sunglasses as I approached so she could see my eyes (for you readers who are not familiar with dealing with such people, it's very important that people can see your eyes... I learned alot when working with delinquent teens and although she was not a teen, she was certainly acting the part--delinquent and all). Anyway, I told her that I was approaching her not to "start up" again but rather to apologize. She immediately began to cry. And I was still amazingly calm, not a shaken or frazzled nerve. She admitted that the boys were probably acting too rough. But tried to justify it by saying that they are only 3 and 4. To which I replied, "Don't you think that's all the more reason you need to be over there so that you can be attentive to what they are doing?" She then replied that they were just acting like boys and I again asked "Don't you think that is all the more reason to be attentive to what they are doing?" I explained that I understood the boys' actions, sure, they were doing what little boys do best, play rough and tough. I even told her that I expected little boys to be that way...that's what little boys do. I went on to explain that there is a time and place. And when their behavior effects the safety of those around especially when there are younger ones being effected, that's when we as parents have to do our job.

I also told her that as a Christian, I was sorry that the incident erupted as it did. I explained to her again why I grabbed her child. She seemed to somewhat agree but would not voice it nor admit it. She said that she was a Christian but that the incident didn't effect her witness. I told her that was between her God and I was not there to judge. But for Christ's sake (and I don't mean that sarcastically as that phrase is often used), I needed to apologize. I told her that I would be a regular visitor and I didn't want it to be tense if we happened to be there at the same. She agreed and was still crying. She proceeded to tell me why she spoke to the mother that was sitting beside us. While she was yelling, hollering, and screaming explicits to Tiffany and me, she didn't realize that this particular mother was watching the whole episode. This girl teaches this mother's son in Mother's Morning Out at a local First Baptist Church. This girl apologized to this mother and tried to explain to her "that this was not normally the way she acts". Needless to say, I think this girl is worried about her job. And I boldly admit that she should be. Regardless of whether she works at a church, with that kind of temper she does not need to be working with children. The fact that I think she was worried about her job and whatever the lifeguards said to her, I left this poor girl shaking, frazzled and in tears. She told me that she had called her husband to come out there in order to calm her down. She was still yelling, screaming, hollering at her children. Oh, by the way, the 3 and 4 year old were not hers, only the 2 year old. One was a nephew and I don't know the relation of the other. Her husband arrived and proceeded to grab up all 3 of the kids and set them on a bench. He was hollering at them but I didn't pay any attention to what was said.

I am glad that I obeyed God and apologized. I don't feel intimidated by her and I wanted her to know that I would not judge her the next time we are there together.

And if this incident wasn't enough for the day.....when I walked back over to get the boys and my bag, there a was lady standing next to my stuff. As I gathered my bag, she looked at me and said "just look at those lifeguards with their whistles in their mouth, just waiting to get on to the kids. All they want to do is discipline instead of life guarding!" In a flabbergasted response, I looked and said "WHAT! are you kidding me?". For a moment I thought she was gonna say something about my incident that happened an hour ago and I was ready to tell her that I was not going to discuss it with her. However, she repeated herself. By this time her little boy came up and was whining about how the lifeguard wouldn't let me slide down head first. To which the mother replied, "You see what I mean, what's wrong with him sliding down head first, NOTHING!, they just want to show authority." I leaned down to the little and responded to his question..."You know, earlier today they wouldn't let another kid do that either. This kid asked the lifeguard 'why?' The lifeguard told him 'that by sliding head first he could hit his head on the concrete causing him to bust his head and could ultimately lead to drowning.' So, they don't let you do that because they want you to be safe so you can come back again and play." I then looked at his mother while still talking to him and said..."And I don't think you mother wants you to drown either, I bet she wants you to be as safe as possible so she can bring you back to play". I asked the little boy if that sounded like a good idea--his reply.."yeah". Well the mother puffed her cheeks and told her son to put his shoes on because they were leaving.

I know this has been an extremely long blog and I am just about through. But I must say that I am not at all surprised about the inattentiveness of parents. I saw so much of it when working at The BCV and being in the social work field. And speaking of being a social worker, I am now struggling with whether or not I should report this girl's action and her display of temper towards her children and me to the church in which is employed. I am most convicted that she should not work with children and if I stay true to my social work ethics and values, I should report it. As a mother, I would not knowingly allow my child to be a student under her.

This incident has taught me much. It taught me the power of a quick prayer and that God is involved in the everything. I learned through this girl that you never know who is watching (in her case, it was a mother of a son she teaches at church) which is all the more reason as a Christian I am to be aware of my witness. I have now added another prayer of mine that I will always show love to my children in public whether it be through attentiveness/involvement, the words I speak to them, or in my way of disciplining. I am very confident and have a peace about my action and reactions. I look forward to our future visits to the water park and expect to have a summer of fun.

Regardless of my 30 minutes of fame as a guest on the Jerry Springer Show this past Friday, we still had a fun time. In the last blog about our visit to the water park I mentioned that "I look forward to blogging throughout the summer about our adventures to the water park and I am sure some will be quite entertaining"...Little did I know that it would be this soon.

Until next time, HB

Friday, June 8, 2007

Only in Paw Paw, Michigan

PAW PAW, Mich. — Why did the 21-year-old cross the road?
Benjamin Carpenter, 21, was crossing a Michigan highway in his wheelchair when he became stuck in a semitrailer's grille and pushed for miles before the unknowing driver was pulled over, police said on Thursday.

Carpenter escaped unharmed, saying, "It was quite a ride," police said.
Click here to listen to the 911 tape.

Carpenter was attempting to cross on Wednesday when the light turned green and his wheelchair became hooked onto the front grille of the truck, which reached 50 mph during the 4-mile trip down Red Arrow Highway, Michigan State Police Trooper Michael Sinke said witnesses reported.

Carpenter was taken to a hospital as a precaution. He had been secured to his wheelchair by a seat belt.

Witnesses reported that the light turned green, so the truck took off, never seeing the wheelchair in front of him or the fact that it had attached to his front grill. When officers stopped the truck at a private business, Carpenter was in a calm state.

"The man spilled his soda pop, but he wasn't upset," said Sgt. Kathy Morton of the Michigan State Police. Sinke said when he arrived at the scene, the man told him "'Yeah, I'm fine. I just went for a little ride.'"
"He was surprisingly normal," Sinke said.

About 4 p.m. Wednesday, a caller told police dispatchers, "You are not going to believe this: There is a semi truck pushing a guy in a wheelchair on Red Arrow Highway," state police said in a release. Authorities initially wondered whether the report was a prank call until others called with similar reports.

When the truck finally was stopped, the driver didn't believe officers until he stepped from his cab and saw for himself. "When he saw us, he was like, 'What's going on?"' Morton said. "The truck driver had no idea," Sinke said. "[He] was in a state of shock."

Paw Paw Police Department Office Manager Susan Millek said their department got the initial call around 3:30 p.m. and Sgt. Kirk Goodrich and officer Tim McMeekan responded to the call. McMeekan said the incident was labeled a car pedestrian accident and he was prepared for a scene much worse than what he found. "We were obviously relieved and shocked to see what happened," McMeekan said.

He said the family was notified within a few minutes and because the man is an adult, the department called to have someone pick him up.
Officers who responded to the scene said the fact that the man was unharmed made this story that much more unbelievable.

"Just the way he was uninjured. It’s just unbelievable," Sinke said. "Obviously someone was looking over him yesterday. I could go another hundred years in law enforcement and never see that again."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.
This was sent to me via email. I opened the link which sent me to I don't think there is anything that I can say to do this article justice. As funny as this is, I am so glad no one was hurt.
Until next time, please look both ways before crossing the street, HB

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Be Glad You're not a Cricket at our House

Last night as I was laying in bed, JB let Gizmo in from her nightly bathroom break just before bedtime. I could hear the cricket outside our door but it was no bother to me as I was so tired I don't think anything could have kept me awake.

As JB came back to the room after getting Gizmo her treat, he had a can of Raid. "That cricket must die." I was slightly shocked at how serious he was. I responded, "Are you serious? You are gonna kill the cricket?"

JB said "I warned it to shut up when I let Gizmo out and it's still chirping."

"Why don't you just pick it up and throw it over the fence or further out in the yard."

"I can't see the cricket but I can spray in the vicinity of its location."

As I lay there, I heard that poor cricket's last chirp and then there was silence. I was literally flabbergasted at this incident.

After JB put Gizmo on the bed and he settled down to bed himself, I looked at Gizmo and said "Gizzie, you and I better make sure we don't snore tonight."

Until next time, HB

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Transformer or IED?

Well, here it is 1:30 am and I am blogging. The reason I am up at this time is because our electricity went out about 9:45 pm and just now came on. I was woken by the beeping of the phone next to my head and the numerous lights that were left on that suddenly illuminated when the transformer was fixed.

JB and I were watching the documentary "Inside the Green Berets" on National Geographic when the transformer blew in our neighborhood. What was so weird about it blowing was that it blew up making the gun shot sound at the same time the Green Beret's were blowing IED's in Afganistan. The gun shot "booms" happened so simultaneously that it made me jump. I was watching this show with such intensity that for a split second, it felt like I was in Afganistan with them and the loud "boom" of the transformer only made it more real as I was watching them blow up the IED's.

I don't think these words can explain the weirdness of the incident because it's probably one of those moments "you just had to be there".

JB and I searched the house for flashlights and candles. We found both and proceeded to use them. I only had scented candles which became strong after awhile. I tried to read the local paper using these scented candles but just wasn't enough light. I don't think I could have made it with back in the day.

However, the scented candles did help with the lingering smell of burnt fried chicken. Which is a whole 'nother story.

I was craving fried chicken and tried my hand at it tonight. I have never been successful at frying chicken. The leg quarters that I had were probably too big to be frying but I did it anyway against my better judgement. And just as before, the outside burned while the inside was undercooked.

There's not a time that I have fried chicken that I hadn't thought about the movie "Chicken Run". To be honest with ya'll, I was so frustrated at the outcome of my fried chicken because it was just continuation of before attempts. Despite my hard work of trying to get supper fixed, I ended up having to throw away all 3 quarters. Now some poor ole chicken was killed for nothing. I couldn't even give it the dignity of being fried and eaten with such delicious delight. Which would have been a much better reason to die than to just be cooked and thrown away. Just a waste of the life of a chicken that could have otherwise fallen prey to a much better cause...KFC, Popeyes, BBQ, Zaxby's, and to the envy of all chickens and the relief of all cows---Chic-fil-A.

It is obviously too late to be blogging if I am rambling on about black outs and fried chicken.

Until next time, I will be saving my chicken for other causes than frying--HB

Monday, June 4, 2007

Water, Water everywhere!!

I am proud to announce that we will now be regular visitors at our local waterpark. We have several friends along with my sister and her girls who have season passes. We did not commit earlier in the spring because I did not know how the boys would like it nor if I could handle 2 toddlers. Well, today we tried it out and we loved it!!!

I think I was more excited about how easy it was to handle the twins. Well, easy may not be the most appropriate word, it's never easy; however, it was not as bad as I thought it would be. What made it even more fun was playing with cousin "Babbey" and Alex. And Alex is such a big helper. She helps watch them and plays with them so well.
Naturally, CB like the slide. (He is definelty Granny's great grandchild--he loves the water). However, BB was not fond of it. He enjoyed just walking around the pool and playing "at his own pace". We took them to the wave pool for a short while. And just like at the beach, they wanted to go back to the "biby" water where they didn't have to hold my hand.
We packed PB&J sandwiches and oatmeal cream pies. Aunt Fiffi brought Capri Suns.
The boys tired out about 2:30. I had no problems getting them to the car. As we were leaving they said "bye-bye awah" as if they were ready to come home and take a nap. And napping they did. I had to wake them so they would sleep tonight.
I look forward to blogging throughout the summer about our adventures to the waterpark--I'm sure some will be quite entertaining. I will add more waterpark pictures to the slide shows below. Hope you enjoy.
Until next time, HB

Saturday, June 2, 2007

"Ma, there's water in my rear!"

Although there was water in our rear, what he was trying to say was "Mamma, there is water in my ear!" That was the funny of the day quoted by SS. You may visit their blog at

Friday, we had play group with our dearest friends at MCW's house. She and her mamma filled the swimming pools with water and we all took a dip. You may visit MCW's blog at

We feasted on ham/turkey sandwiches, Beagle Bagel chicken salad sandwiches, chips, and drinks. We played outside the whole time.

You see, there are few of us in sunday school who try to get together often to play and chat. We found out early on that there's not much time to chat when we have up to 6 children playing. Sometimes we even have more. However, it's a great social setting for both the little ones and their mammas. We all take turns hosting the play group. We used to play once a week but lately it's been a little more sporadic due to busy schedules. However, it is always a joy when do get together and play with each other.

I didn't post any pics because the only ones I took look so much like ones I already have of the boys playing in there pool here at home. And with 7 children, it was hard to get them all in one place to take a picture. And that was a battle I was not willing to fight.

Until next time, HB