Wednesday, March 31, 2010


Egads. I gave myself a weekend. I took a week and a half.

I am kind of denying the passage of time. I am denying that tomorrow is April. I am denying that in 10 days. It will be a year.

And my heart aches. And my shoulders are slumped.
And my tears aren't drying.

I am digging in my heels.
The world keeps spinning.
And I am very still.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

road trip

I'm taking my show on the road this weekend. Hanging out with my cousins on Friday night, hanging out with my mom and dad on Saturday, and hanging out with great friends on Sunday. I'm looking forward to it. Very much.

Which means ... I think I am going to not blog this weekend. I know. I totally challenged myself to blog the whole month of March. But sometimes, life happens. And I want to savor my moments. And unplug just a bit. I'll extend my month of March into April a little.

Have a wonderful weekend, sweet blog reader.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

bouquets of clover

I am back on campus twice a week. Today was my first official day with real hours.
After my day was finished, I walked back to my car. A further park from when I was full-time.
When I spotted my car from half a block away, I noticed some greenery on my windshield.
It was rainy and windy today. I assumed a leaf or branch had fallen on my car.

It wasn't.
It was a bouquet of clovers placed under my windshield wipers.
On St. Patrick's Day. From my very own secret leprechaun.
What a sweet surprise!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Having to put only two people live in my household makes me cry.
Stupid census.
(And we don't say that word in our house. But I am too tired to choose my words this night.)

Stu is right at this very moment watching YouTube videos of guys with nunchuck skills. And he has declared that he wants a set for his birthday.

Everybody needs a hobby.

I am two days into being a vegetarian. My cousin read the book, The Kind Diet. And she warned me that Chapter 2 turned her off of meat. I read Chapter 2. And now I can't eat meat either. I am a pretty picky eater. But I'm willing to try now. I tried Soy Milk for the first time tonight. Delicious. Of course, it was chocolate Soy Milk. That makes a difference. Everything is better with chocolate.

I am now a member of 3 tennis teams. And I take a lesson during the week. And I usually play on Sundays. I like it because it is an hour and a half (sometimes longer!) that I don't think about anything else but getting a little yellow ball across the net. And I sweat. And I remember that I am still here. I am still breathing.

I am also starting the Couch to 5K program. My mom is doing it. My friend Angelyn is doing it. And I just saw that another friend, Jenn, is also doing it. I plan to up the ante on my next Half Marathon ... a little worst to middle of the pack action. Most improved, that's me!

Monday, March 15, 2010


I will not pay to be sad. Anymore.
No sad movies. No sad songs.

We went to see a war movie. I'm sure the movie was fine.
But I could only think of the boys in the movie. Of their mothers. Of the news they would get.
I know. This was a movie. A suspense movie. I should have been on the edge of my seat. And that these were actors. Acting a part. They will get up. They will be with their families.
But instead all I could think about was how sad it was for the families. The fictional families.

I have enough going on to be sad about ... I don't need a movie. Or a lyric. To make me cry.
I'm great at doing that all by myself.

Sunday, March 14, 2010


I haven't been to the grocery store in almost a year.
I think I went with Michael the Monday before that terrible Thursday.
And that was the last time.

For the first few months after, I didn't sleep. Just couldn't. I was so tired. But I didn't think it fair that I should feel comfortable. That I should rest. I also couldn't go to the grocery store. A great friend told me that I could go years without going to the grocery store. But I couldn't go years without sleep. To choose one. And not the other. To choose not going to the grocery store. And to sleep. Good advice.

Stu goes to the grocery store for us now. Or I pick up the basics from Target. I can shop in their little section, but not Publix. I know. It's weird. Michael was my grocery store partner. I don't like grocery shopping to begin with ... neither did he, really. Together it was fun. We laughed. We timed ourselves to see how much time it would take. But could never remember the last time score.

It seemed that every time we bagged our apples or oranges, we started an avalanche. Same with carrots. We made it a game. Would the carrots jump off the shelf this time? Another silly game that we enjoyed together.

I can't really explain the reason that I can't get past the grocery store parking lot now.
I pull in. I sit in the car. I leave. Without going inside.
For now.

Saturday, March 13, 2010


My own version of Wordless Wednesday ... Silent Saturday.
But I am not great at silence.
I think that this picture was taken at the end of a timeout for little Michael.
I don't remember the timeout offense (though backtalk is an easy option).
A sweet face, regardless of the crime.

Friday, March 12, 2010

five for friday

I've seen this idea on other blogs. And decided to copy. The point is to write a short list ... five to be exact ... of things I am thinking/doing/contemplating.

1. I'm still kind of on a little high from this past weekend's half marathon. Again. I was seventh from the last person to finish. But still. I hadn't trained. And I was sad. I finished. With the help of my friend, Carmen. My own stubborn ways. And a little threatening from the balloon wearing pace lady. She was one serious walker.

I was glad to meet two new friends ... Tina and Kelly. These girls know how to bring it. I'm going to need to practice bringing it before I see them again. Which I really hope is soon.

2. Because I like to challenge myself (but you all knew that from my one of my previous posts), I am going to start the Couch to 5K program. Or one like it (thanks, Ang!). Stu is doing it. My mom is going to do it. My friend Angelyn is doing it. Accountability all over the place. My next challenge is to run. Not walk. A Half Marathon. I could go from worst to first ... or somewhere in the middle, right?

3. Today was a rough day. I have these with increasing frequency. I think it is the thought of the upcoming one year date. And I just feel overwhelmed.

4. I have had two dreams about Michael recently. But when I wake up, I can't remember any of the details of what we did, or what we said. I only have this feeling of visiting with him. It is a wonderful feeling. And it is a terrible feeling. Because I feel like I missed out on an important visit with him. I want more. Because I am greedy like that.

5. We got a new washing machine. Stu had ordered a toilet. It was delivered. Broken in half. So Stu traded it in for a washing machine. That's logical, right? Remind me that I need to dedicate a blog post to my husband's large appliance purchases. Five microwaves. at one time. And then I will blog about the demolition of our master bathroom. Stu makes for good blog fodder.

I never know how to comment back to people that comment in my comments. (How many times could I write comment in that last sentence? Three.)

I wanted to address a comment on yesterday's post from Tammy. So I will do it here, because I think it might be a common question. Tammy asked if strangers were could come to the Celebration of Michael's life in April. To that I answer, ABSOLUTELY. I'd love to meet people who have been impacted by Michael's story. Who have prayed for us. (And Tammy? I kind of feel like I know you from your comments on this blog. Is that weird? )

Thursday, March 11, 2010

a celebration of life

The support that Stu and I have received over the past 11 months has been truly wonderful. Thank you. Thank you for praying for us, calling, e-mailing, checking on us. We appreciate it. More than you could know.

On April 9, 2009, our world collapsed. Michael was our lives. Our greatest joy. And in an instant, he was gone.

And so ... it is our hope to continue to celebrate the great joy that Michael was to us. To you. To the people that he knew. We would like to invite you to join us on April 10, 2010, at Tekesta Park in Tallahassee from 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm. Bring a snack to share. Bring a lawn chair. There is a playground and open fields to run and play in. We'll have a balloon release - and papers to fill out messages to put into the balloons.

We will celebrate the life of Michael.
Join us! I would love to meet some of you!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

the missings.

I have these days where I just want my old life back. Where I talk about normal things. And do normal things. And think normal things.

Today was one of those days.

I want to be planning Spring Break. I want to be stressing about FCAT testing. I want to be looking forward to the summer. And making dinner for my TWO boys. And waiting for my one little boy to come home from school. To talk about his day. To do homework together. And tell him twelve times to pick up his room.

I want to go to dinner and enjoy it. Instead of struggling with our little two seater booth. Of being "just two for dinner tonight".

I miss our family. I miss the crazy normalcy of it all.
I miss my old life. I want to freeze those crazy moments of getting ready in the morning. Of the reminders to walk straight home from school. I miss packing lunch. I miss signing my name as Michael's mom.

Most of all. I miss the normalcy of grabbing a hand as we cross the road. Of one last snuggle and kiss goodnight. Of the I love you's.

Of looking for Michael in a crowd and my heart leaping for joy.
That he was MY child. MY son.
What a blessing! What an imagination!
What a wonderfully weird kid!
(That is a compliment in our house)

Once again, this grief reaches up. Punching me in the throat.
Grief is a jerk.

Tuesday, March 09, 2010


Today was for relaxing.
For enjoying a latte. With a friend.
For massages. That worked out kinks in my back.
And for eating delicious foods. Without care for how it might have looked.

Monday, March 08, 2010


I feel this need to continually challenge myself.

Mostly, it is physical challenges. Like the 3 Day (and the fundraising that comes with a walk like that). Or the Disney Princess Half Marathon. Or play tennis four (or sometimes more) days of the week.

I think it is to remind myself that I am alive. That I am able to feel and experience life in a physical way. I don't train well for these events. But I do them. I feel the pain of the blisters. I feel. Which is important because I mostly try not to feel.

And I wonder what it is about these challenges that draw me in? Is it something to look forward to? Is it the pushing of myself to get out of this cocoon of comfort and silence? Is it because my child can't do it now? And couldn't do it before? Is it to remind myself that I AM alive?

I don't know. I just know that I am currently planning my next challenge. Putting together a training schedule that my feet are begging me to follow.

Sunday, March 07, 2010

we did it.

We did it.
We might have walked a little slow.
We might have been just seven people from being the last to cross the finish line.
Seriously. We were 11260 and 11261.
But we finished.
Tiaras were on straight. Smiles on our faces.
We did it.
I might a few rather large blisters on my feet.
I might have my very first blood blister.
I might need new shoes because these have been through two 3 Day Walks.
And countless training walks.
I might not have trained much. Or at all.
But we did it.
I might have cried as we walked into Magic Kingdom.
I might have slowed my friend Carmen down.
A lot. She is a runner. But stayed with me the whole time.
Helping me through it.
We might all need cheerleaders like Carmen.

We did it.
And I might never take my finisher's medal off my neck.

Saturday, March 06, 2010

princess castle. green army men.

Every princess should have a castle. And her own legion of green army men.

Michael's green army men. Our neice, Jordyn's pretty pink princess castle.
They found a way to make it work.

Friday, March 05, 2010


Since I am on my way to Disney, I thought I would share a moment of our trip to the Magic Kingdom. Our last trip to Disney as a family. It was for Star Wars Weekend. We spent one day at Magic Kingdom and the other day at the Star Wars Weekend hub, Hollywood Studios.

Michael and I were chosen to be flag wavers in the Family Fun Day Parade. There was a routine. I stuck to it, being a professional drill teamer and all. Michael was mostly content to just wave his around a bit. And wave to the people.

Our PAPA-razzi, Stu. (Get it ... PAPA as in DAD. Oh. I bring the funny.)
Anyway. Stu followed us the whole parade with his video camera. Jumped in front of people. Just to film us. I don't have that video to share - but will soon.
Michael and I thought we should be parade professionals.
That's not exactly true. I thought we should. He was mostly content just to watch.
A sweet memory from a fun family trip.

headed out...

Headed to Orlando tomorrow for the Disney Princess Half Marathon. Wish me luck!

Wednesday, March 03, 2010


I have been so envious of the snow falling in other parts of the South this winter.
I love snow in the South ... it is beautiful when it falls. Work and school cancelled. Fun times outside. And then it melts. Good times.

I thought I would post some photos of Michael's first experiences with the snow...

I'm certain that it was snowy outside when I put Michael into this very big coat. For a very little buddy. I laughed. And laughed when putting him into this coat. His little eyes peeking out. His arms that stayed outstretched.

First snow in Georgia. Evidence that we didn't get snow often in our state...socks used as mittens. Mismatched clothing. Canvas sneakers. Big cheesy grin at the sight of the white stuff. We didn't last long outside in this winter weather before high tailing it back inside. For hot cocoa.

And then this video. Taken a little over a year ago. Michael and I had just stopped on our way to Nana and Pa's house. When we got out of the car, it was snowing. We took a little video of it.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

the one where i am the winner...

Thank you for all of your welcome back comments. I appreciate your thoughts and prayers and well wishes for me and my family.

I am a winner.
Kind of. I will at least keep repeating that statement to myself.
A positive affirmation? Sure. We'll go with that.

My sweet friend, Jackie, nominated me for this award.
She has the best name. Jackie Justice.
I nominate her for superhero. Of the world.
She needs a cape.
Thank you, my friend.

There are rules. They are:
The rules for accepting this award are:
1) Post a thank you and the link to the person that gave you the award.
4) State seven tidbits of information about yourself.

(I took out rules 2 & 3. They were kind of a lot of pressure. So I took them out. And I like all of you.)

Here are my seven (very random) tidbits...

1. I am headed to Orlando this weekend to participate in the Disney Princess Half Marathon. Have I trained for this event? Nope. But I will wear my tiara and hope for the best.

2. My coffee table is an orange bench. We bought it that way. And it is an orange-safety-cone, vest-you-wear-to-hunt-in kind of orange. Bright. I liked the shape of the table and planned to paint it. My husband thought we should keep it orange. We did. I love it.

3. At Christmas time, the Husband and I were in Books-A-Million. A local wildlife author was there selling books. Giving autographs. There was no one at his table. He looked sad. I listened to his attempts at enticing people with the wildlife of North Florida. To no avail. I watched him from the safety of the Biography section. I convinced the Husband to go talk to him and buy a book. He did. I think more to stop my tears than because he wanted to talk wildlife.

I have a really sweet Husband. And I am kind of crazy sensitive.
And by kind of, I really mean very.

4. I don't like to leave my house. It is not so much about the going out. It is about the coming back home. This house is too quiet. Too still. Too filled with memories. And it's just better to stay in. So that I am not always reminded. Of what is missing.

5. My favorite go-to clothing item is my black hoodie. It is faded. It is a magnet for my dog's yellow hair. It should probably be retired. And I wear it all the time. I'm not what one might call fashion forward.

6. I can sing all the name of all Fifty states. In alphabetical order. I learned this song in fourth or fifth grade. It was my favorite song to sing to Michael when he was a baby. It was his favorite song for me to sing when he was big. Even up until last April. I sometimes sing it at his grave side. And by Connecticut, I am a mess of tears. Because of the do-do-do at that part of the song. His part as my back-up singer.

7. I prefer to write with mechanical pencils and fine point sharpie pens. I think it makes my handwriting look neater.

Coming up with seven tidbits is not as easy as I thought it might be!
And with 44 minutes left to spare!

Monday, March 01, 2010

i'm back.

I'm back from my unintended blogging hiatus.

February came. And went.
I sort of coasted through the month.
I've been very weepy these past few weeks.

The Proctor and Gamble "Thank you Mom" commercials during the Olympics did nothing to stop those tears. Egads. Same with the Visa ones.

But I'm back. I discovered that I missed the blogging. The writing out of these feelings that I try for most of the day to suppress. Because I don't want to make anyone uncomfortable.

I have issued myself another blog every day of the month challenge. Today it begins.
Thanks for keeping up with me.