Sunday, March 16, 2008

Creating Memories

Jeff and I love our kids and try very hard to make memories they will look back on and smile but once in a while we like to create our own memories without the kids. Yesterday was one of those times. I have been having a lot of problems with my back this past year or so and have even had to have injections into my spine to help with the pain, these problems don't go very well when you love to ride horses!

My husband and I own two beautiful horses that we have boarded with some really nice people. My horse Dolly is a quarter horse and has the best personality anyone could ever ask for! She and I have had a special connection since the first time I saw her. She always seems to know when I need a hug and will come up on her own and put her head on my shoulder as if to tell me everything will be OK. She doesn't do this with anyone else but me which kind of makes me smile because I know it's our thing. Jeff's horse Suzie Slow Poke is an Appaloosa/Arabian mix and seems to have that same type of connection with Jeff that Dolly and I share.

Anyway, since I have been having so many problems with my back I haven't been riding like I want and have even considered giving up my horse. It is very hard to justify spending money to keep her boarded when I don't get out to ride that often. So Jeff suggested going for a final ride before letting her go. He had found a nice sandy riverbed to ride in about an hour drive from where we live, so yesterday we loaded up the horses and headed for the riverbed. As we were headed out there it started to rain but by the time we made it to our destination it had stopped.

The day was absolutely beautiful!! The sky was bright blue with fluffy white clouds (a few of them were grayish black as if to remind us of the looming rain), the ground was soft sand and the riverbank was covered with luscious green grass and trees. We walked along and soaked up the time (that always seems to go by so fast when it is just the two of us), we trotted (not in place as Donkey did), and just before we left Jeff and I went up to where the freeway was and waved at people driving by and smiled when people actually waved back. I couldn't have asked for a better memory! I have to admit that this ride made my decision even more difficult to make and I am still not sure what I am going to do but no matter what the choice, I will always have wonderful memories of that day to look back upon!

Friday, March 7, 2008

Standing up for what is right

My son Archie came home the other day & told Jeff & I that the principal was going to change or possibly even drop the JROTC program at Mc Lane. He was very upset about it because this program is an important part of not only his life but many other kids including our other son Tyler. He asked me if I would take him and another friend downtown to the school board meeting that night so that he and his other friends could try and talk them into keeping the program the way it is. So, I did. After the meeting the kids were not convinced that they had made much of a difference so they all got together and contacted the media and began to fight for what they believed in.

They managed to get some TV stations and the Fresno Bee newspaper to come down to the school to interview them & get people to understand how important this program is to them. They went to one of the Wal-Marts in town and also walked the neighborhoods getting people to sign a petition to keep the program. I even wrote a letter to the paper letting them know just how much this program benifits the children. The JROTC program teaches respect (for self & others), disipline, values, morals, responsability, self-esteem and the value of friendship and loyalty. All of these things I am sad to say aren't very prevelent in schools today.

I have to admit that I was extremely proud of all of these kids for standing up for what was right and what they believed in. This past Wednesday The Fresno Bee had a very nice article (front page of the Local section) about these kids and about the principle deciding to keep the program as it is. He stated that he was proud of them for proving to him that they really wanted the program and that they stood up for what they believed in. Personally I think he was just trying to save face! These kids fought hard and didn't stop until they got not only what they wanted but what they felt the kids of Mc Lane need.

OK...this is a little off the subject but...It is kind of funny how my relationship with Archie and Tyler has grown over the years. I remember in the begining that they hated me so much that the mailman even heard about it!!! I had been walking down the hallway about two weeks before Jeff and I were to be married and I had heard Tyler and Archie talking about how they were going to break us up and all the horrible things they wanted to do to stop us from getting married. I opened the door and asked them if they had something to say to me...we had a 2 hour long arguement/discussion and by the end of it we were all crying and making committments to each other. Mine was to never try and replace their mother (which I had no intention of doing) and to ALWAYS be there for them as long as I was living. Theirs was to give me a chance and to tell me if they felt I had stepped over the line they drew. Since then we have had a few rocky times but for the most part I swell with pride and am very happy to call them my kids! It's very cool how things have turned out with them and I am glad that I have such a good relationship with them now!!! Well I guess that's enough for now

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Interesting phone call

Yesterday while I was at work my coworker Laura told me I had a phone call and she thought it was one of my kids. I didn't think much of it until I picked up the phone and my daughter Cheyanne was on the other end crying. I immediately asked her what was wrong and she told me she had "started and was scared". I tried to comfort her on the phone and let her know that everything was going to be ok but I could tell by the sound in her voice she was wanting me to go pick her up and talk. I only had a half hour left so I asked Laura if she would mind me leaving early. She said no and I was out the door.
When I got to my Sister-In-Laws house she seemed to be a little less upset, we talked on the way home and I reassured her that everything she was feeling was all normal and that she was now a woman. Her reply to me was "Daddy is going to be upset that I am not his little girl anymore". Yes he is I thought to myself, knowing how difficult this transition for Cheyanne was going to be on Jeff. Once we got home she and I talked a little more and then it was off to her friends house to tell her "the news" followed by phone calls to both grandmas and probably a few more we don't know about :-)
I have to say that being a step-mom can be very difficult at times, trying hard not to step past those boundries that had been placed, but oh how rewarding it is to have the HONOR of being the "first" one told and being able to have my relationship with Cheyanne grow even closer. She is a beautiful young woman that I am extremely proud of and I am truely blessed to have her as my daughter!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

First Time

Starting a blog is harder than I thought it would be!! So many things running around in my head it is hard to know where to begin. Since this is my first time blogging I guess I should start off writing a little about myself.

My husband and I have known each other since I was 13 but have only been married since 2002. Jeff has always been my Best Friend but I never gave our relationship a chance to become anything more than friends until 8 years ago mainly because I didn't feel worthy enough and I was terrified that if he really "knew" me he would run like there was no tomorrow. I have had a LOT of bad experiences growing up that made my self-esteem so low that I never felt I deserved to really be happy. Most people never even knew I felt this way because on the outside they saw someone who seemed to be very much in control of her life when all the time I was screaming on the inside for help. I went through relationships where I had been abused both emotionally & physically that pretty much left me drained and emotionally broke.

When Jeff & I started talking about getting together I was scared to death! How could he possibly love someone like me? Why would he want to be with me? We spent a lot of time together talking and getting to know each other very well and I made it a point to tell him all the Horrible things about my past...kind of my defense tool & also to see if what he was telling me was really true...that he would be there for me no matter what. Much to my surprise he has stuck to every word he said...he has stuck with me through more trials than anyone should! He has proven to be my Knight in Shining Armour and my Soul Mate for life!

Jeff & I have 6...YES 6 wonderful kids. His, mine & ours but as far as I am concerned they are all ours!!! Archie is almost 17, Tyler is 15, Joshua just turned 13, Cheyanne is 12, Alexis is almost 9 and Clayton is 4. They all have things about them that make me proud and all of them are involved in something they really enjoy. Archie & Tyler are both in JROTC and both enjoy going shooting at the Cowboy Action Shooting range with Jeff. Joshua has been getting involved in karate and is learning how to play the guitar. Cheyanne and Alexis both love to ride horses and play softball (Alexis can't wait for the season to start so Daddy can be her coach) and Clayton...well besides loving pre-school he has become very good on a lot of educational and some non-educational video games, some of which I can't even do :-) It is amazing to me at how much joy and sometimes headaches they give me. What a blessing they are to me!!!

My life may not be picture perfect but there is nothing on this earth that I would trade it for!!!! God definately knew what He was doing when he put Jeff in my life!! Thank you God!!!