You Just Can’t Make This Up

So, I’ve told you before about the stuff I have found on my road when running. If you are just tuning in, click here to see the items to which I am referring. If you are a frequent customer, you should recall it already but by all means take another look; it makes for a nice laugh.

Being that was February, you can imagine that more intriguing things have been found since. I’ll share a few of interest….

As spring began to set in, I was out running when I found an article of clothing in the middle of the road. I ran towards it, scooped it up quickly, and continued on my route. I held it out in front of me as I ran so I could examine it. Turns out it was a nice, long sleeve, female biking shirt. Initially everything looked to be in good shape and then I noticed a big rip that began at the neck line and continued down past the shoulders on each side. I wondered why the shirt had those rips and then it dawned on me. The biker took off that morning with the long sleeve shirt being worn. As the ride and day progressed, the weather warmed up a little too much for her tastes, I am assuming, so the shirt had to go. Rather than waste some valuable time getting off the bike, perhaps unclipping her shoes, slowing down her crew, taking off her helmet, and then finally taking off the shirt, it appeared she opted to just rip the shirt enough so that the article could be lifted off while she still biked and wore her helmet, speeding off in just a sport’s bra? After a few stride of inspection, I tossed it to the side of the road so that I could finish my run unencumbered. Generally I would have picked it up and carried it home on the way back so I could throw it away but I just forgot about it. Fast forward to the next day. As I traveled the same path again, I happened to glance out at a garden that grows along that running path on my road. I began to laugh out loud, while running, as I spied the following image: A scarecrow dons the biking shirt! Too funny. I am just glad that someone put it to use, even with the big tears!

A few weeks after that shirt and scarecrow incident, I found some keys. Being that it was near dusk when I saw them, I picked them up so that they would not get ran over and ruined. They happened to have a dog tag on them with a pet’s name, the owner’s name, a phone number and an address. The address was a good 50 miles away from my home. The phone number was not current, for it was a business, and the worker on the line had never even heard of the person. The address did not match up with the phone # either. I did a white pages search on the address to get a phone # but those came up empty. Finally, I figured FB might help. I put in the first and last name, narrowing it down to the area in which I live and what was on the tag. One person appeared and I sent her a message, hoping she was the person. Turns out, they were her husband’s keys, who has the same name (Kelly). The dog tag was from many years ago and he had kept the tag as a reminder of his beloved pet that had passed. She was beyond thrilled I contacted her and they actually lived just a few doors down from me. The keys, however, were found a 1/2 mile from their house. Anyway, as I talked with her, she explained how the keys ended up missing, and I, in turn, told her about all the random things found on our road while running. She was laughing and enjoyed knowing that I at least keep my eyes peeled for interesting things, being that is what saved their keys.

Now, as if all those aforementioned items are not enough, I found something today that is simply ridiculous. I have no idea what goes on in the minds of people as they perhaps toss something out of a window or do not secure something down in the back of the truck. There is seriously no reason why the next thing should be found by anyone on any road, especially in June. Alas, I found them, and I have a picture to prove it…….

Ready???

That’s right—-ICE SKATES. Seriously. Ice Skates.

At first I just saw one but then, about 12 feet away, there was the second. Someone must be on to my scavenger hunts and he/she is trying to provide me with topics for conversation, for this makes no sense whatsoever. Not that the butcher knife ever did, but this one even tops that. It’s ICE SKATES!

I’m dead serious about finding these on my road.

You just can’t make this stuff up, folks.

“My Friend Daniel”

Right before we had our first son, we moved to a new town and rented a lovely little home. Just up the street was a couple that we were fortunate to eventually get to know well. They had a cute little boy that was just learning to walk. When we asked what his name was, we were surprised to know he was a Daniel too! Once our son arrived, the boys got to know one another. It was always fun to watch the slight confusion between the two when “No, Daniel” or “Daniel come here, please” was said. Neither knew exactly what to do.

Eventually we moved away and just a few months later so did they. We are now both in different states but have allowed our paths to still cross from time to time. We’ve both also added a second son into our lives which are just a month apart in age. Recently, our Daniel met their Daniel at the zoo, along with their daddies. It was a hot, fun, and manly day. When Daniel got home and woke up from his nap, he told me “Momma, I go to the zoo with my friend Daniel and had fun.” So sweet!

It still blows my mind the change between the two little friends. Seriously, how did this:

turn into this:

all too quickly?

Five hundred twenty-five thousand Six hundred minutes

How do you measure a year?
-Rent “Seasons of Love”

Ah, what a year! I know everyone says this, but it seems like just yesterday we welcomed little Wesley into the world.

He’s brought so much to our lives in just a year.

I once heard someone complain about having to go to a nephew’s birthday party and it pained me. I know that birthday parties can sometimes be a bit much, but let’s face it, making it another year—or in Wesley’s case the FIRST year— is something to celebrate. I never mind a little kid’s birthday party, especially my own children!

You might recall the pirate party for Daniel last year. It was sooo much fun. I decided for Wesley, however, to keep things a little simpler and just have immediate family over for the celebration. I did not compromise on the frugal part though; it was still a cheap celebration. It was a farm theme but I did not ask people to dress up, as I did with the pirate party.

Here are some photo highlights:
We had food on our farm, for sure! I always end up preparing too much food, but I would rather have too much than not enough. Thomas grilled hamburger and hot dogs. There was watermelon, cantaloupe, chips and dip, served in a “trough,” veggies, and sweets, such as the chocolate carrots (bought on after the holiday was over sale for 25 cents a package!) and homemade icing and cupcakes, topped with a farm animal (Target’s dollar section–I bought two bags).

Little man had his own homemade “smash cake” that was decorated with a little toy we already owned; the 1 candle was Daniel’s so that was recycled: And as I have already showed you, he enjoyed the cake thoroughly.

Opening gifts was a little overwhelming because each kiddo there, Wesley’s brother and cousins, wanted to be right there next to me trying to help. We did get them all opened though, including the one from Mommy and Daddy, a Prince Lion Heart wheelie mouse……that Mommy got for free! (This site was offering $5 store credit for legitimate reviews written about their products, so one night while the boys were sleeping, I went to town, earning this and another item)

It was truly an enjoyable event, and I am so proud of my little one, even in just five hundred twenty-five thousand Six hundred minutes. Thanks for a super year, Wesley!

Here are a few more of my favorite photos from the day:

On A Fast Track?

It seems like everyday I hear or read about something that is going to kill me and my family. Cell phones, contact lenses, pasta, Trans Fat, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Tylenol, Floride, Tap Water, Oil, Cars, Running too far,  The Sun, The lack of Sun, Paint, Strawberries, Peanut Butter, Microwaves, High Heels, Cleaning Products, the absence of clean. The so healthy for you fish that we eat at least once a week? Bad for me. The list can go on and on and on and on and on……Plus, just recently there was a little blog debate on a friend’s blog that I joined in on (and in some ways fueled) about these sort of issues that has really gotten me thinking. And the more I think about it, it is the list that is killing me. (please note that the linked articles may not be the best representation of research, for many of the informative pieces I read are in peer-reviewed journals that I have access to thanks to my teaching at an on-line college. I can not, however, share those links with you being that you are not an attendee of the college, an instructor, nor a paying subscriber of the data base–you simply would not be able to view them. In light of that, I have pulled a few links just for a fun sampling. The other ideas not linked are still items of consumption that I have read or heard having hazards, despite the absence of a link to an outside source.)

We eat pretty well at our home. I know it could be better, but so can virtually every house hold. I will confess to some foods of comfort and ease, especially for Daniel’s lunch. But today, via an article from a FB friend, I now have found out that even my eggs are going to harm me. Ugh!

See my fridge photo above? See the two cartons of ” ‘Naturally Grown’ Cage Free Grade A White Eggs” ? They are yet another ticket to death. I’m obviously on a fast track there ya’ll.

Trust me when I say we are not ones that run to medication, but every once in a while, your kid smashes his face on a wrought iron railing and comes out of it three teeth short, so it is helpful to have some medicine to assuage some of his cries of pain. I like to have it on hand just in case…..But medicine will kill you, right? And so will the lack there of.

Somehow though, amidst all this deadly material, people have begun to live longer. Now “quality of life” can be debated, for one man’s quality may not be quality to another, but we’re still here longer than before. A higher life expectancy is ours.

Thomas’s beloved Paw-Paw would have been 99 this year, had he not passed away in February. I think this man had it all figured out. I never really saw him turn down any type of food. He never seemed to stress about what he was eating or not eating. He did not have the Internet to do research with in order to discover more, but he was a knowledge seeker each and every day of his life. I saw him drink coke and eat cake and ice cream at birthday parties. He even put dressing on his salad, yet, in spite of all these things, he lived to be 98, and he had QUALITY of life, right up until the very end. He was thin, strong, and sharp in mind until just the last few weeks of existence.

What did he do? He ALWAYS applied the idea of moderation. He exercised daily, doing just the right distance of walking at just the right pace. He took vitamin C. He loved the Lord and sought His will each and every morning.

Sadly, I know people that have done just these very things and died in their 30s. I know children that have not even had the opportunity to consume anything wrong and hazardous die of cancer. Although not in picture perfect health, my father was still in decent shape, yet he died suddenly at 35.

Random. What gives?

And even though I know things about health and seek a healthy lifestyle (just ask my husband about how I will get on to him –I’ll confess, NAG him–about things), I am beginning to lose heart, my friends.

Even the eggs above are bad for me…..and I am sure that Peanut Butter is too, even though it is organic and tastes yummy. I bet the crunchy nuts inside were somehow tainted. And let’s not even discuss how if you have a severe allergy to PB, you might just break out in hives looking at this photo.

Those apples? Stuck in some truck next to other apples covered with bad pesticides, most likely.

The blueberries? Death trap, I am sure. Not USDA certified organic, so they will kill me.

What’s a girl and her family to do?  Duck, and cover? (make sure you say that in the Cold World jingle voice that I intend)

Duck, and cover. Perhaps…….but then there becomes this whole new battle, which the aforementioned blog comment/post and a current client of the hubby has me considering: obsession towards a healthy goal that leads to lack of well being.

Although Thomas’s client has a good goal in mind: to avoid hazardous materials and the spread of germs, he has begun, at a very young age, to live a life consumed with fear over those very germs he has been told time and time again to avoid. “Wash your hands; it is flu season.” “Do not touch the toilet seat; it is dirty.” He’s scared literally stiff at times, unable to move and function at a daily task. Consumed with the idea of spreading sickness to a point of irritated skin and no friends.

And I am not judging, for I have my own fears, based in “evidence,” that also cause me to consider my approach to my life…….and my eggs.

So, if my eggs, my cage free, organic, grade A, at least I got them on sale,  eggs are the death of me, at least it’s been a good life……..

i ♥ faces- Play

This is my little Wesley a splishin’ and a splashin’. I love how he is scrunching his face to avoid the water. I just posted this pictures in another post before I realized how well it would work for this week’s theme at i heart faces. Check out how others have captured play by clicking on the icon below:

I can’t believe that cutie above is about to turn one year! Where has the time gone….seriously? He has blessed our lives so much. God is good, my friends. :O)

Repurposed Fun

My cousin gave Daniel a ball pit for his 2nd birthday. That’s right, a  ball pit. We have a nice walk-in attic space, so at least I had a decent place to store it when not in use. Turns out, once Wesley came along, he ADORED it. He would crawl over and dump himself into the pit with no qualms, full of joy. If I was holding him and it was ever in his line of sight, he would make all attempts to squirm out of my arms and get to it. Admittedly, when we first received the gift, I was automatically thinking of “pay back” gifts I could give her son on his birthday, but the kids really do love it. In fact, they love it so much Daniel played a little too hard in it and broke the pipe that held up the netting. With my waste not mentality, I knew there was still use to the ball pit, and it was at that point our new summer pool was born. Turns out, Wesley loves it just as much when water is in there along with the balls and Daniel still plays hard and has fun.