Friday, September 26, 2008

Like Sand Through My Fingers

That's what I've been up to for the past two weeks. :)
I must mention that I had the opportunity to meet Pat Summit last Wednesday. She agreed to be interviewed for "Reach Them to Teach Them." Scott Cagle had the courage to ask her how she knows when she meets a winner, and she gave him three ways. First, she said they have to be hard-working. Second, they must be passionate, and third, they must be about something bigger than themselves. Her story of influence was about her 9th grade History teacher and basketball coach. He was the first teacher she ever had who paddled her for not giving her best. The paddle's name was "Mr. Blister." Pat said he paddled her so hard, he lifted her feet up off the ground. Things are progressing well for Reach Them, but I miss having Anderson full-time. We have an exceptional team and Summer Tucker is doing a tremendous job leading our Outreach team. Several of us are supposed to go to Nashville to hear Susie Vanderlip speak. Dean plans to fly us, so it should be a quick, fun trip.

Addie's cross country is proving to be enjoyable for her. She ran her first mile in 7.30. Not bad, for an 8 year old. I'm so proud of her! She is also in a Brownie troop, so I suppose we'll be hitting up all our friends to buy cookies and such. Her first meeting was today.
Sam loves soccer and his daddy! That child absolutely adores Tom! He would rather be with Tom than do anything else! School is starting to "click" for him and it's great to see him try hard and be successful. His art is unusually creative-so much like Drew's art used to be when he was in elementary school.
Chelcie is adjusting nicely to college. She took her first official "roadtrip" to Auburn this weekend. She's having a ball, testing her wings and preparing for her solo flight from the nest. Drew is right behind her. He is smokin' this year with cross country. I had the honor of driving him, Billy, and Peter to Nashville last weekend and Drew set his PR at 17.40. What a beast!
Tom is working hard all time. His blackberry is constant companion. I am proud of how hard he is working. A tree fell across the driveway last night and he had to cut it up at about 10, after working all day. He didn't even complain!
Well, we're heading to Greek Fest now! Pictures to follow...

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Young Life, Comcast, Soccer, and Cross Country

I'm doing well to get some pictures taken these days. Addie and Drew are running cross country. Addie had the first meet of her life last Tuesday and I missed it because I had a staff meeting at school. Turns out the staff meeting was just an opportunity for the administrators to chew us out about a few people who did have their grades in on time. Unfortunately, I got Sherry Storms in trouble by laughing when she bumped her head on a table. Ms. Fuqua stopped in mid-rant and said, "Ladies, do you have a problem?" in the most hateful voice you could imagine. Of course, I said, "Yes," and when on to explain that Sherry had hit her head on the table. Ms. Fuqua was not amused in the least! She folded her arms, tapped her plastic flower clad foot and scowled for the rest of the afternoon. Sherry almost lost it because her feelings were so hurt, and I just got madder by the minute. I had come in early to supervise detention, and had to stay late for the parent meeting from 6-8. I felt disrespected, humiliated in front of the staff, and taken for granted. I wanted to get up and walk out the door for good. I could not believe she talked to us like that. It was not a good day for me.
Addie ran great and finished with a time of 7.43 for the mile. Not bad for a third grader and her first time running a cross country course. By the time I got home from school, she was already asleep in bed, but at least I got to talk to her on the phone.
Reach Them news of the week is that we have added Comcast as a sponsor. They've promised us heavy coverage, and donated $1,000 toward teacher tickets to the event. Eddie Jessup also contributed $1,000 this week for teacher tickets. We've got $10,000 worth of tickets promised, and now we only have $6,000 more to raise to cover the cost! Hallerin has agreed to "star" in our Comcast commercial along with Phil Williams. We've been abundantly blessed with many good people who are willing to help get the message out about Reach Them to Teach Them. I spoke to John Lee of the Boys and Girls Clubs this week. We met with the folks and the TN Theatre to firm up our details for the night of the event as well. Many, many things to do, but we're making definite progress.
Sad news, Linda McGhee, former secretary at A.L. Lotts Elementary passed away on Wednesday morning. I heard she was only 61 years old.
Chelcie's 19th birthday is tomorrow. I can't believe it's been 19 years since she came into our lives and made life so very interesting!
Tom, Addie, Sam, and I went to the Bearden/Farragut game last night. Bearden lost, but we had a good time sitting with Chelcie and Tyler Rosenbaum and Tyler's two roommates. Chelcie looked beautiful and I was almost caught off guard at how mature she looked. Drew was at the game too, but we didn't see him 'til we got home. He'd had some girl paint a bulldog on his chest. Sure wish I had a picture to show you here, but the moment passed. He didn't stay for the whole game because he had to take the ACT this morning. I sure hope he did well.
This morning, Addie and Sam had soccer games, so the first half of the day was spent at the soccer field. Sam's team lost, but Addie's team won! After the games, Tom left for Georgia and the kids and I went of find a keyboard cover for Chelcie's birthday. We got one for her along with a Cookie Cake from the Great American Cookie Co. It's a "cookie-themed" birthday for Chelcie because I sent a cookie bouquet to her dorm room yesterday. I sure hope she doesn't "toss her cookies" after we take her to Chili's for dinner tonight! We also went by Morgan's house to pick her up because Tom told Addie she could have her over to spend the night.
The Young Life banquet was last Saturday. We had the Slacks, the Gibsons, and my mom and dad at our table. Unfortunately, the Alfords didn't show up. The Eldridges canceled at the last minute and the Creasmans couldn't find a babysitter! Mayor Haslam shared a powerful message about the impact Young Life has had on his own life. He remembered a speaker at Windy Gap telling him that the decision to accept Jesus Christ as Lord of your life is too important a decision not to make. He was urged to accept Him or reject Him that weekend, and it's made all the difference in the world to him.
It's been a pretty good couple of weeks. There've been a few bumps in the road along the way, but I am grateful to have been on the journey.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Total Recall? Nope, but I'll Get Close!

We enjoyed a long weekend thanks to Labor Day. Chelcie had some young men from Florida pay her a visit. They stayed up in the loft at our house all weekend. Carson and Brian. Young Life pals. Nice boys.

They got in very late Friday night, so I didn't get to meet them until Saturday. Fortunately, they were relatively low maintenance! I changed the sheets on the mattresses in the loft and in doing so discovered the momentary shock of my life! I found a small baggie containing what appeared to be pot! After my heart dropped to my toes, and I remembered who my son is, my panic turned to amusement and suspicion. On closer inspection, I realized that the "pot" looked an awful lot like moss. Upon opening the baggie and taking a lungful of the suspicious substance, I knew it wasn't pot, but was actually moss. Not to be one to hoard panic to myself, I called Tom to the room with as much urgency in my voice as I could muster. He hauled a** up the ladder and I laughed to myself as I held up the baggie and watched the color drain from his face. As I handed the "evidence" over to him, I could suppress my smile no longer. Turns out, it was a plant! Drew put there on purpose! Big Goof-ball! He was hoping we'd find it and he'd laugh his little head off at his "joke." Where did he get such a warped sense of humor??

Saturday morning, the kids and I headed out to Victor Ashe Park to cheer Drew on at his first XCC meet of his senior year. He did great! Out of about 300 runners, he placed 19th! The Bearden team dominated the meet and Drew's time was his best start of the season time to date.

After the meet, we headed home to meet the company. Most of the day was spend relaxing and reading on the porch. I cooked a 'big'ol' spaghetti dinner complete with salad and bread for the entire family plus three! Chris Ellis stopped by to drop off the Two Rivers video and pictures. Ed stopped by too to provide instruction on how to connect wires. He left with the pictures and videotape.

After dinner, we went for a family walk on the RR tracks. Drew opted out, but Buffet, Sam, Addie, Tom, Chelcie, Brian, and Carson joined us for what turned out to be a lot of fun.

Sunday, I went to church with Addie and Sam and sat alone in the service until my dad showed up to join me. Mom wasn't feeling well, so he came alone. Miles and Katy came to the 11 o'clock service and I was happy to see them.

Sunday night, we headed to BoomsDay with everyone else in East Tennessee. We found our old West Park friends and enjoyed catching up and reminiscing about the good ol' days.

Thankfullly, Monday was a sleep-in day after our late night of fireworks and overhearing teenage boys discuss the civil rights movement at 3:30 am! Angela Gonda came by at 11:30 to spend some time together. I showed her around West Knoxville a little bit. She got the tour of Cedar Springs, Turkey Creek, Farragut and such before we landed at Lakeside Tavern for a little grouper for lunch. We had a very good time. I felt purposeful for the first time as I shared my heart a little bit. We talked about Crazy Love and trying to find God's purpose and then trusting Him to accomplish His will through us. Good time. We headed back to the house in time to bid the boys farewell on their trip down south as the head home to Florida. It was grilled cheese and chicken salad for dinner as Sam and I studied his spelling words and dined without Addie. She went swimming with Taylor and mooched a little dinner off of the Allins.

Tom just got home from working in Georgia, so I need to post some pix and wrap this up! Reach Them meeting tomorrow. So much to do, so little time!