Friday, January 16, 2009

It's a Small Town Thing!

Wow! I just realized how long it's been since I've written a new post. Life just took off around here after Christmas, just like it does all of us.

We received a call Tuesday morning that Chad's Grandmother from Caddo Mills, Tx had passed away. She was 88 and had been dealing with Alzheimers for about 10 years, so we know she is in a much better place now... reunited with her husband and enjoying a new mind and fullyabled body. So, we made the trip up to Caddo Mills, Tx to plan and attend her funeral on Thursday.

Caddo Mills is the town Chad grew up in. He spent his whole life until he left for college in the town with 1100 in population, one stop light, one tiny grocery store that's overpriced and about 30 students in his graduating class at Caddo Mills High School which named him the Valdectorian.

I used to kinda secretly snicker and tease Chad about his small town, but I have never been more embraced, taken care of and loved as we were from this sweet little town yesterday for MeMaw's funeral. The visitation in the little Caddo Mills funeral home was packed with people of all ages coming out to show support to Chad and his family. There was food everywhere, flowers galore, people lined up just to give a pat on the back and I think, just to see Chad again.

No one was worried about what they were wearing or better yet, what anyone else was wearing. No one noticed who had on designer boots or whose hair looked perfect, who had on the most stylish outfit. None of that... these good folks had just come from work in their clothes and strickly cared about being there for the family.

At Chad's dad's house, the doorbell rang and rang with people dropping over homecooked casseroles, desserts, salads, or just there to talk, remember and hug. You name it and we had it. Then, for the actual funeral service, we showed up to the church and the sweet ladies from the tiny little First Baptist Caddo Mills, that probably has 80 -100 in attendance each Sunday, had a spread like I have never seen prepared for the family to have before the funeral. They were serving our plates, helping with the children, making drinks, they even had a playroom set up for the kids to go to.

After the sweet funeral done by the current pastor of the 1st Baptist Caddo Mills, we headed to the cemetary. The ride there was the final thought that made me realize what a sweet town my man grew up in. As we were all in a line behind the hurst with our lights on, cars were actually pulling over, men on the side of the street were removing their hats, tractors on the road stopped moving, a garbage truck actually pulled over and the driver inside removed his hat as well.

The cemetary was full of gravestones from names I have heard over and over while in Caddo Mills... generations of families all in one place.

The whole experience made me stop and think about two things: First, I'm so thankful that Chad had the experience to grow up with these folks who truly treat each other like family and stop everything to bless those who need it. I honesty think it is the first time I realized what made him, HIM.. This small town that raised him modeled service and just loving people.
Secondly, It made me think about how our generation is becoming so busy that I'm afraid we're getting away from serving others and blessing families. I'm sure I'm just speaking to myself here. I hope that even in the larger towns, we'll always form and keep our special bonds with our dear friends and will give them a "small town" feel when it's needed! It sure blessed me!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

New Year Resolutions!

Let's have some fun and talk about our NY resolutions. I know, it's that time of year. The time we all try to say what we want to do and then fall off the bandwagon a month in. I'm sure guilty of that. BUT, because it's tradition, I feel like I'm going to make some anyway.

1- Chad and I decided to go on a cash only basis for our spending. I feel like there was a sign given to me from above when I lost my debit card last week. So, now, I have no choice but to use cash. I'm not the best cash spender. I'd way rather swipe a debit card than worry about having cash, but I think we decided that it'd be something we'd like to try for a while. It's really not about "charging" things as we typically don't have a problem with that... but more about keeping up with the family budget.

2- I want to be a better mom. I think I'm pretty decent at setting time out for my hubby.. In fact, I think we spend quite a bit of time together and enjoy it. But, I feel like I need to give my kids more one on one time and focus on them individually. More single kid date nights, etc. I also need to improve my patience with them. They're just kids and they really do need to ask mom 100 questions each. I also want to spend time showing them things and taking them to new places. Even just places around our community and surrounding areas that are interesting. A trip to a Mexican Beach might be nice too!! I'm sure I could squeak that under the "being a better mom" resolution.

3- I'd like to make some improvements on the house. I really want to focus on painting some things, replacing some things, cleaning out some things.. You get it. All of the things that take time and effort.. and money, of course.

4- I want to cook more decent meals. I "prepare" things and we all eat around the table each night. But, Preparing a meal and cooking a meal to me are two different things. Anyone can "prepare" a box of mac and cheese and baked potatoes, but cooking a meal takes a little more thought and effort. My kids really need to broaden their horizens with what they eat, and I feel obligated to help them do it by offering a bigger variety.

Thanks for letting me share. Anyone else have NY resolutions?