Thursday, October 23, 2008

Her Name is Miss Valorie....

Hello! I decided to post an email that I received from my sweet friend Michelle of Oregon. She has a friend named Theresa who did a wonderful thing. (posted below,,,please read!) It helped me remember my experience with “Miss Valorie”. There is a homeless friend on the corner by my house and her name is "Miss Valorie". Her front teeth are missing and she is such a friendly lady. She always has a big smile and a wave for everyone. For the past 4 years, I have seen Valerie on the corner and she has become my kid’s favorite. We always roll down our window and give her some groceries that we bought on our way home, or even a slice of Pizza from Little Cesears. One day we stopped traffic to give her a pop-tart cuz the light had turned green and we had to move. Last year "Miss Valorie" had earrings on and make-up with a fancy hat. Elizabeth got so excited pointing out her fanciness saying "Mom, maybe "Miss Valorie" has a boyfriend! " The next week we stopped and asked her if she has a boyfriend. She yells out "Heavens no! I just wanted to be fancy!" We all laughed. When I was pregnant with Ben...very big and pregnant, she spotted my belly as I was handing her a dollar and asked what was that? (pointing to my belly) I told her I am having another baby! She asked me if I know what causes pregnancy. I said, "no what?" She said, "lots of kissing". She laughed her toothless grin and told me to watch out with that. I laughed and told her I would be more careful.

I haven't seen "Miss Valorie" now for about 6 months. My kids miss her and every time we pass that corner one of my children will say out loud.."I wonder what happened to Miss Valorie.” I miss her too. I wish I had made more of an effort to find out her background and why she is where she is. I am thankful for the Spirit of Christ that inspires us to love everyone. I am thankful for the way "Miss Valorie" helped me and my children. I have prayed much for her too and I hope she is in a good place right now. So, this is a personal invite to say Hi to someone in need. I am sure today you will see a homeless person on a corner if you are out and about. Share a few words and you will see that they are struggling just like the rest of us. We are not so different, only that they might not have been trained and loved as much as you.
See I can be sober too…just not as fun. hah

Her Name is Betty....

This is an email that I recieved from a friend of mine. It is so good, I wanted to share it with all of you.
"Greetings! I went to talk to "the lady" that stands over by McDonalds/Costco (on Cornell > Rd. in Hillsboro). She stands there, with her sign asking for help, almost every day. I have often seen her and whispered a quiet prayer for her, but always looking away when I drove past her. I felt prompted by God,to go listen to her story and pray for her today. I did go listen and she did let me pray for her! At first she thought I had come to condemn or criticize her being there. I assured her that I came to minister to her and to hear her story. She shared with me a lot in a very short period of time. She has suffered many calamities and abuses, many from her own family. Betty used to have a job until a few years ago, until she had a mental breakdown. She was diagnosed with bipolar disease ( A generational curse from > her Mother's side) . She at first was given the wrong meds. and during "black outs" she did and said bad things. Betty got fired and as a result she has lost many things and now lives in a tent. The system has failed her in many areas or she "does not qualify". She is homeless in our community and needs our prayers at the very least! She is on the "waiting list" for different social services and "waiting" for disability insurance that never comes through. She does not gamble,drink, smoke or do drugs. She depends on the kindness of others to help pay for her mail box and other bills that she is trying to pay off because she believes she needs to be as responsible as she can with the money people give her. She accepts the money and the gift cards that people give her. She appreciates the kindness of a wave and a smile. She has hope that there is an answer for her, that her money will come, and believes that God takes good care of her "out here".She blesses those who are unkind with their words or their gestures. Some words are harsh and critical, and she still smiles. When I was leaving her she said to me."God blesses me that I can stand here and watch the eagles and hawks fly. I am not here so we can judge or criticize the value or correctness of the things she shared with me. I am here to share a piece of her story so that you would know "Betty". That you would be kind to her when you see her and wave or smile. That you would give her money or gift cards or ask her what she needs. But, most of all, would you pray for Betty. Pray for the healing of her mind and for God to meet her every need. That curses would be broken and blessings be poured out. I know she is but one of many homeless people "out there", but I know we can make a difference. Even if it is one person at a time, it makes a difference to them.> > Abiding in His mercy and grace,> > Teresa

Saturday, October 18, 2008


Thank you, Thank you, Thank you to all of you good, sweet friends who helped celebrate my one step closer to 40!...and all of those who didn't even know it was my birthday and just assume that I will always be 29...I love you more! No, 36 is going to be a good long as I can get my lipo, tummy tuck..and boob lift...(maybe a little filler too?) I know I talk a lot about body reconstruction and it is not that I am insecure or depressed about my body image...but you know I figure if this body has been through 5 babies...and 36 is due for some renovation! At church they say, "your body is a temple" right? Well, I know for a fact that the temple shuts down for two weeks out of the year for remodeling and so will I! (If I can afford it of course...which probably means, it will stay a dream of mine.) I might have to keep squishing my fat to the side when I look in the mirror..if I want to see my "after" shot. I know I am being a little vain, I apologize for anyone who feels sorry for me. I am shallow what can I say? Hah! But, my birthday was good and Mom bought me the "Costco Cake". You know, the "Matilda" cake? The chocolate wonder that I swear the baker at Costco made a pact with the devil to make it so sinfully good! I am so glad that he did sell his soul to the devil cuz he has made me one happy, chubby, 36 year old. (Hello Lipo!!) I tried to send a piece to Amy today. I put it in a container and everything...but it was so heavy...I decided to eat it instead. My mom told me yesterday that 2 ounces of dark chocolate is good for you. She said it raises the Seratonin in your brain. So, eat, eat!!! That has gotta taste better than prozac don't you think? Of course it might throw you into depression at just knowing the calories and fat in the chocolate...but hey can't have it all! (you piggie). Well, it is late and I must to go to bed. I have watched a lot of Sci Fi with Doug tonight...and I feel like my brain has turned into a"Nosgul". (those are the enemy of the Stargate guys...KILL ME!!) ---Ana.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Charity Never Faileth...even when it comes to Coco.

Okay, I got a request for a story from Aimee. So, this is for you Aimee and anyone else out there who is trying to love a dog. Many of my friends have heard my endless complaining about my chocolate Lab Coco. She is really a sweet dog. And the only real problem with Coco, is....she is just that...a DOG. So, her being a dog, she can't help it right? And me being a Mom...I can't help that she had become my nemisis....Yup, my enemy! I live in a small house and with a large family plus a dog...(who I was sure made a goal every day to get in my way when I went from bedroom to bedroom, or follow me around the house, or look at me with manipulative eyes wanting to go on a walk...or do I need to mention the hair? Poop? Licks? (I hate that) and overall smell? (Even with a bath once a week, she is stinky to me... )) I guess I am not a pet person. So, that is where the story starts. And it ends with me loving Coco now...well, at least we have an understanding. I am mom and she is Dog...and I will continually practice Charity on her and she will keep doing what she is doing cuz...she is a dog. So how did this "mighty change of heart" occur? Well, this summer when I returned from Idaho, I had been stewing over the fact that Coco drove me crazy and that I was going to have a new baby and that there was no room in the "inn". Coco had been living in my mom's backyard and the day after I returned from Idaho, my mom calls upset explaining that Coco had chewed up her nice garden hose and dug holes all over her yard. That was it! She was out of there! (and not here!) So, I talked to Doug about our "problem" and we agreed that Coco can't stay. (Well, Doug agreed that I couldn't handle her anymore and was sick of the "dog-drama".) I thought it was a great idea to take her to the pet shelter so she could be adopted by a great little know the 2.5 kids kind? Poor Doug rushed out the house and drove Coco 45 minutes away to the Pet and Animal Shelter. I have to admit I did feel a pang of guilt as he rushed out the door to do the dirty deed, but it was nothing to the bolt of guilt I felt in my chest as I explained to my kids what I...(I mean "we" (right?))..felt was best for Coco. You should have heard the "weeping and wailing and nashing" of teeth!!! I felt like I was in one of those cable TLC real life dramas! I comforted and explained..etc. It was the longest two hours of my life. So, two hours later, Doug gets home...grief stricken. I felt like I had just made Dougy-boy give away "Old Yellar, Benji and Lassie"! So, the family is all crying and hugging in a circle. (I am not invited) I feel like the biggest CRAP mom ever! At that point...I knew what I had to do. I had to save the Dog from myself! I called the shelter and told them I would be there in 45 minutes or less to pick up the Dog. The lady at the shelter said, "I don't think you can.". I asked,"What?" She said, "we have never had someone pick up their dog one hour after they have been dropped off". And I said, "Well, get ready for the first time then!" I hung up, grabbed the keys. Doug stopped me and made me swear..more than even a pinky swear, that I would love and cherish Coco till death do we part. I swore in my tears that I would love this Dog and all that jazz. Running to the Van and driving over the speed-limit I prayed that Coco's life would be spared cuz I just could not handle the anquish in my families faces! I finally arrived with tears in my eyes, asking for Coco. I met a wonderful guy who works there as a hobby to help unwanted animals...and he got a big kick at my family drama about Coco. So, there was Coco, hyper as ever...and here I was LOVING the dog. I pet her, let her lick my face and all of that. So, after 75 dollars (yup, had to pay to get her out. She even got some shots) and going straight to PetCo for some leashes, toys, dog training classes..and almost 200 dollars later...she came home to the sad family and made them happy again. So for about a month after that Coco felt like a queen cuz I really felt honest love for her. We bonded at pet training classes and she got better dog food. Today..she is a better dog. I don't know if she really changed, but my attitude sure had. I also learned that you can honestly LOVE that which you HATE as long as you save, serve and sacrifice for them. I will use that lesson many times with my husband! Hah! Thanks Coco. (So, her being five years old...she only has about 8 more years tops right? Ooops! ) ---Ana.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Spelled Benjamin wrong! What a bad mom!

Oh what two months of cream can do!

This is Benjamine Douglas Marshall, at the hospital on Aug 1 2008 and today after his bath on Oct 13 2008....oh what a difference two months make!

Me at my prime!

Oh, and for anyone who wondered how big I really is something to gasp at! ...I am humble see? But obviously not modest. Sorry, I was attempting a work out! Silly me! Then we washed the cars that day...very hot. (meaning us!) This is me and Melanie...she calls me "Sis", course she calls everyone "sis" being from West Virginia.

kite flying for a buck and Beckah stuffing already?

Kite flying is really great in Tucson if the weather is 70 degrees. Actually anything under 70 degrees is great. What made kite flying extra great is the pretty amazing dollar store "Dora" kite that we used. All for a buck...and some faith. Heather helped me in the adventure. I have to admit it is a little scary to take the chance that Beckah, Sam, Adam B., Miranda, Abe, Adam, Paul and Ben would be crushed hopes if we didn't get the plastic thing up. They had high hopes (hah, get it?) on that kite. When I got home from the park...I wondered why I don't go to the park more often....of course I then remembered the 105+ degree weather we have been having and if I spend an afternoon at the park, the house will look as if a tornado hit it. This is the truth, If my house hasn't been cleaned by 2pm....then it will be an "out of body experience" to try and get myself to clean it before the evening comes. It is kind of like working out. If I have not worked out by 2 pm...then you can pretty much welcome the cellulite into your day, cuz its not happenin. Icecream will also play a key role in your afternoon (why wait for dessert at night?) . So, on that note...I think I will have some icecream and look at my clutter at the same time. Can you say "self-mutilation?" Elizabeth just said she found a breast pad in the couch...if she only knew that if she lifted the cushions she would find about ten! Have a wonderful Fall day...and if you live anywhere with changing leaves...please pile them up and jump in them. I miss that! Cactus needles just don't have the same effect. Talk more later--Ana
Oh..PS...this picture is of Beckah with "breasts". She found a couple of green foam balls and I caught her stuffing them in her bathing suit and posing in the mirror. She had a big smile on her face...I have to admit so did I when I found her! Beckah loves boobs....uhoh.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Sam my Man

So here is my little man, Sam. Yesterday I was nursing Ben...(of course), and Sam asked me what is Ben doing? I explained that he is eating his breakfast. He asked me what is he having? I explained that he is drinking his milk. To that he asked, "...and is the other one, (pointing to my other "pecho" (boob is spanish, it is what we call it around here.)) the other one juice?" I had to laugh...yes Sam the other one is his juice. I am proud of him though. We have not had a poopie in the pants incident for almost two weeks now. One of the reasons for this is divine inspiration. I was at the end of my rope one day and I had to cry out (just like in the Bible) to God and ask him how I was going to get my 3 year old to stop messing his pants...and then it came to me. "Stop getting mad and spanking him or threatening his life...just take away his swords". I had no idea how inspired this was. I immediately went to him and told him very politely and matter-of-factly that if he poops again in his pants, then I will take away his swords. He was mad at the idea, but it didn't really effect him till they were taken away. I put them above my Armoure (sp?) He tried to climb the tall piece of furniture, but finally gave up when he realized it was impossible. (Yes! I win! Hah...oops, not the most humble parent am I?) So, when he went in the toilet...he got them back. It only took 3 times for this to happen and he hasn't done it again since.... So, I am hoping this will work when he is a teenager with the car, his phone, know, just about everything. Didn't realize it had to start at 3...poor kid. I love this boy though. He is a crack up and loves to play with ants, hunt for crocodiles and torture Beckah. By the way, my friend Ashlie took the pictures of all my kids...they are cuter than I imagined. Thanks Ashlie. Ben is very different looking from Sam. Smaller eyes, fat face. We may need to focus on the "inner" beauty with Ben! Hah. Goodnight. ---Ana

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Eye Flashies...past and present.

So, here I am on the bed with my lap top and Ben is cooing at the ceiling fan. He had three shots in his legs today...a total of six vaccinations. Poor little guy. I hate the shot thing. I always hover over their faces as they turn bright red and let out a breathless scream. I am glad at that moment that in two minutes my baby won't remember the last five minutes...too bad they don't stay that way huh? There were many times today that I would have liked Sam (my 3 year old) to forget the last five minutes. I did a lot of counting, tight grabs to the "thinking chair" and eye flashies. (you know eye flashies right? The thing you do where you make your face pull back the skin around your eyeballs, making them stick out further. If this method is going to be effective, you have to clench your teeth at the same time while tightening the neck. Leave any part out...and you have failed at the eye flashie technique.) My mom was always good at that one. She could be down the hall on the other side of the church building, and when she would "eyeflashie" we would get numb butt and reverantly walk back to our seats....praying. You didn't want to get to step two cuz that was a severe pinch in the arm or leg by her strong skinny fingers. Her fingernails were like acrylics...but real and I swear she would sharpen them to make the extra pointy for just the right pain. One pinch and you were wishing you had stopped at eyeflashie. Step three depended on whether you were in public or not. If you were in public, you had better wish for death cuz that would be less painful than what awaited you when you got home. If it was not in public, then expect hair pulling or a tight finger pointing you to your room "immediately"!...I’ll leave out the rest of the gory details. Don't get me wrong my mom is awesome...and was a great mom...but I am glad she was the way she was or I would feel like a total failure right now. Today was good though. We had a water fight outside and icecream. Hopefully my kids will remember the fun mommy and not so much the flashieeye mommy. Well, Ben calls for the all you can eat smorgasbord...need to maintain his 16 pounds...97 percentile. I am training him to be a heavy weight champion. So proud of my cream....wish it could come straight from my hips...then we would really be talkin! Ugh. I am a whale! Goodnight--Ana

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

What is that called? Oh, yeah a table!

Okay, this will be short since I just deleted my great entry...and I mean it was wonderful. Talked about coming up from the dead and poop and all kinds of cool stuff, but it is gone now cuz I don't know how to use a computer! Why? Because I am totally fuzzed out in my brain and cannot make any sense of the senseless babble that is in my head. I need sleep. I need my baby to let me sleep. He wants an all-you-can-eat boob fest all night and day, and I gotta tell is a little exhausting. I couldn't remember the word for “table” today. Elizabeth had to finally ask me if I meant "table". I just stared back at her with my mouth open and drool coming out nodding slowly. (I think she may have taken a breast pad and wiped it off my lip...what a good girl!) I do have great kids. They have been home for a three week break, and besides the clump of poop left in the washer after the wash had been put in the dryer...(yes, washed poop still stinks and sometimes older siblings don't know they should rinse the poop out of the underwear of their regressing sibling’s (Sam) underwear. ( I swear he pooped his pants for the 100th time)...yeah, had to wash that load hot. So, where was I? (Got the poop story in, hope I don't delete this again) has been great. I am trying to resurrect my personality now and I hope expressing myself on this blog will help. Just a shout out to all of you who are trying to laugh at life and be grateful for insanity... I have been working on that gratitude thing?...and it is working I think...I just hope I don't die now that I feel peaceful and grateful for my kids and home...uhoh that always happens in the movies and I am reading some really sappy books by Nicholas Sparks (chic books...good ones) and so many are sick and dying when they have so much to live for...getting me paranoid. Okay, I am rambling. Love you and share me with your friends. We are all in this together right? I have missed you all. (Thanks to all your… “I miss your blog comments”) Ana