Wednesday, November 26, 2008


Times are tough
We hear it said
We live it
Bad boys, bad boys
Became real
Investments faltered
Families torn, divorce
Car problems
Where to put baby?
Job losses

Is there another side to this valueless coin?

Friends who sit with you
when you're scared at night
Getting a check in the mail
When you need it most
Loved ones asking
"what do you need?"
And then acting on it
Full cupboards
Cookies fresh from the oven
A card that blesses the heart
Nice checkers
Nice gas station attendants
Nice postal carriers
Inspirational blogs
Everyday kind of blogs
Rich conversation
Dinner parties
New life


Monday, November 24, 2008


Friday was one of those days at work where you just want to go home afterwards, go to bed, and curl up in a ball, emerging only for food and bathroom. So I was tempted to cancel my plans for that evening. I'm so glad I didn't! TJ and I went to Salem to see the incomprable MARGARET BECKER. I've been a die-hard fan of hers since 1990. She is a Christian singer without all the nicey-nice crap that I find fakey or, at the very least, "light." She says (sings) it like it is. Her guitar playing is phenomenal. And this particular concert was special to me because about 3 weeks ago, her booking agent contacted me to see if I could find her a place to play. Unfortunately, I couldn't find her a place. But she ended up playing at Calvary Chapel in Salem, which seems like an awesome church. Anyway, TJ and I were a bit late so as we approached the doors, we could hear Maggie in the midst of an oldie but goodie "Innocence." Her voice was ringing out. I ran. I didn't want to miss another MINUTE! She went on to sing the following:
Soul Tattoo
All I Ever Wanted
Clay and Water
You're Still God
To be an Indian
I Wouldn't Know What Love Is
And a couple of others I can't remember

I approached her afterwards. I said, "Hi Margaret, I'm Charlotte. I was trying to help Vicky get you to Portland tonight, but I'm soooo glad this venue worked out. This is a great place. Ok, so here's the deal: "Honesty" and "You're Still God"??? My anthems!" She looked very happy and graciously said thanks. TJ and I got in the car and immediately turned on one of Maggie's CDs. I go, "Um, we just saw her and um, she's about 30 feet away from us right now and um, I got to talk to her and touch her, um, arm and we just heard her sing soooo......" Yeah, I was excited. And it was just what I needed after a hard day.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


This morning was not what I expected. I woke up at 7:00. And so did Greg. Now, those of you who know us know that Greg gets to bed around 3:00 a.m. due to his job at UPS. So you can understand why I was puzzled by his waking up at 7:00. I would soon find out.

Greg was on his way home last night at about 1:00 a.m. About 6 miles from home, he saw police lights glaring in his rear view mirror. He pulled over, kicking himself because he KNEW he had expired tags. We both did. Payday is the 25th. We can wait it out. It'll be fine. These are the things we had told ourselves. Well, this was his reckoning. So he was prepared for the officer to cite him for that. He WASN'T prepared for what followed. The officer came back to Greg's car and asked him to step out. He then asked Greg if he had any weapons on him or in the car, to which Greg honestly and emphatically replied, "no." All the while, he was wondering why they were patting him down and holding him by the wrists, not in a rough way, but still, not in a routine way. Come to find out, Greg's license was suspended. Greg, of course, had no knowledge of the suspension. The officer explained that the DMV said Greg didn't have insurance at the time of his accident in September. Greg told him that was untrue & he had documentation to prove insurance coverage. The officer was nice and apologetic, but said he had to immediately impound the car, which he did.

Stunned, angry, and confused, Greg did what any red-blooded American male would do - he WALKED the 6 miles home. He said it was therapeutic. I think he's nuts, but I kinda get it.

So what's the plan now? Get a 2nd job just to pay for all of this! (little joke there) Greg got his license reinstated today and tomorrow, we'll get the car out of impound.

Lesson learned: prioritize legal issues. I took this to heart and while Greg was getting HIS license taken care of today at the DMV, I was getting MINE taken care of. You see, I got Lasik eye surgery in March. I knew at that time that I needed to get a new license WITHOUT the corrective lenses classification. But I had put it off. So I bit the bullet and paid the lousy $25 to get legal. It's worth the peace of mind.

As change occurs, welcomed or not, it's important to remember the blessings. In our case, Greg wasn't hurt, he didn't go to jail, he and I are very close, he got his bonus check just in time to take care of all of this, and we are still pregnant and expecting the gift of life in March. Last, but certainly not least, God is still God. That is something I've clung to all year and continue to hold onto when circumstances seem to be spinning. It's kind of like when you were a kid and hung onto the center of the merry-g0-round on the playground. The world around you was whirling, but as long as you held on to the center, you knew you were going to be ok. We're holding on. We'll be ok.

Please read this link for encouragement during times of change.

Saturday, November 15, 2008


Last night, it finally happened. I had my hand on my stomach and - BOOM! She kicked so hard, my hand moved!

Today, we were at a semi-annual Dr. Marten's shoe sale (thank you, UPS, for the $30 shoes) and a dad, mom, and baby sat down by us. After visiting, I found out the baby was 9 months old. She was kind of fussy at first, but then she and I started playing peekaboo. She giggled and smiled and cood (sp?). We both had so much fun. I'm going to be one of THOSE moms. Ya know - the kind that goes, "buzza babba boo boo boo" in that annoying, not-of-this-world voice?? Yes, the one I'VE complained about when I've heard others do it. But somehow, when *I* do it, it's ok! :-)

Today marks 24 weeks and Greg and I are starting to realize that in a matter of weeks, our lives are going to change. We are looking forward to her arrival....

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

What does it mean when you spray a HUGE spider with Easy Off oven cleaner (because that's all you have) - - - and it doesn't die??? I WILL get him!

Anyway.......onto other things....

I'm one of those weird ones who actually LIKES grocery shopping. It feels like a legitimate way to spend money. Hey, we NEED groceries so I HAVE to spend. Plus, I do something called the Grocery Game that helps me save hundreds of dollars a year. So I'm justified in the pleasure I find of this once-a-week excursion. There is one caviat to my joy. ONE thing that sticks in my craw (yes, I'm starting to talk like my mom). This kill joy's name is . . . Richard, and he works at my local grocery store. First of all, and I know this shouldn't matter, he creeps me out. He has no hair on the top of his head and a scraggly, gross pony tail on the back. He has looooong nails, but his hands are unkempt. His pants are baggy and he has a hunchback. I'd better stop there, as far as the creepiness factor goes. But hey. I'm sure I'm creepy to some, so I tried him out one day about 10 months ago. Ok, forget the physical stuff. He is a terrible checker! I use a LOT of coupons: mfr, in-store, other-store, you name it. Most checkers are very accomodating. They don't count to make sure I'm only use 10 other-store coupons. If a product is semi-close to the coupon I have, they give me the savings. Granted, they don't HAVE to do this (& they probably SHOULDN'T), but they do. Well, Richard does not give ANY lee way (sp?). Ever since that time 10 months ago, I have vowed never to go to creepy boy again. Guess who was the ONLY checker tonight?? Mmm hmmm. I contemplated asking another worker if he could open a till for me, but Richard didn't have any customers so I thought that would be out of line. I took a deep breath and proceeded to Richard's line. Wouldn't you know it - he immediately started by telling me that he wouldn't accept a certain type of coupon from me. He even told me that his own manager accepted the type of coupons I had, but that his manager was wrong and he (Richard) wouldn't accept them.

Well, I became verbal. Can I blame that on the pregnancy? I told him, "That's exactly why I don't like coming through your line. You are the sticklerest of them all (yes, I know that's not a word). " He goes, "Well, we can't take those coupons." I said, "So because I got you and not your manager, I get penalized. That's why I try to NEVER go through your line." He goes, "Well, I would've told my manager not to accept your coupons." I go, "What's his/her name?" He gave me the manager's name & I wrote it down. What Richard DIDN'T see was that I wrote down HIS name too. I'm contemplating a complaint letter.

The moral of the story? Not all spiders or creepy checkers can be stopped immediately, but they BETTER not cross a pregnant woman. And don't worry - I'm not going to spray Richard with Easy Off!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008