My oldest son, Noah, was recently “hanging out” with a friend down the street. Around 8:00 p.m. I texted him that it was time to come home, and when he promptly texted back, “Yes ma’am,” I instantly knew something was up. There was no plea for another 30 minutes, nothing mentioned about not having homework, not even the typical non-response followed hours later by, “Sorry, mom! I left my phone in Max’s room, and we were downstairs…”
I prepared myself for the worst. Not because my son is a trouble-maker…in fact he’s just the opposite. Just last night my daughter, Lindsay, was telling Noah that she ran into an old friend of his from elementary school. This friend kept telling Lindsay, “You’re brother is a cool dude. He’s the reason I put down the cigarettes and gave up the idea to paint the neighbor’s car pink.” He went on to say that Noah is always the voice of reason, telling the kids to re-think their crazy ideas. However Noah is a 14 year-old boy and all 14 year-old boys eventually find trouble. There was an incident with the police several months ago while my husband was on a business trip across the country. It was nothing big, just a case of him being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
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Last night I watched two back-to-back episodes of Hoarders. I’m not sure why I did it. I think maybe because it was the last night that I could lay in bed late at night and watch TV before my husband comes home from his business trip. He doesn’t understand why I’m fascinated by that show and frankly, neither am I! Watching Hoarders is much like driving by the scene of a terrible car accident… you just have to look.
These poor people have obvious mental issues! Each episode features two stories, so all-in-all I was able to peek into the lives of four really messed-up families! I suppose every family has their nuts, and mine is no exception. But how messed up are these people that they allow themselves to sleep in a foot and a half of rabbit droppings, or let 3000 rats nibble on their clothes and pull out their hair for their nests?! Most of these individuals either live with a family member or live in a family member’s home and they just allow it to go on. I was so disturbed! And to think there are enough people in the world that live this way that they were able to make a recurring series out of it. (The opening credits state there are over 3 million hoarders in the USA.) Any young college student should seriously consider psychology for a profession, according to A&E there will be no shortage of job opportunities any time soon.
It was a restless sleep for me last night. Sharing your bed with cats, rats, and hundreds of dying, pecking chickens makes for one tired individual the next morning. Happily they will be replaced tonight with my hard-working, loving husband!
I suppose my kids should be grateful for Hoarders, though I hope they never watch it. This morning when I walked into my kitchen to find my teenager’s un-rinsed, dried crusty cereal bowl in the sink and then stepped in something sticky by the refrigerator, I simply shrugged my shoulders and thankfully started my day out scrubbing…with not a rat in sight!
My family and I are currently involved with a new organization called Austin Angels. We started in October and it has really changed the way we look at our community. In October we volunteered in a girl’s home in Central Austin. This home houses girls from the age of 10 through 19. We put on a Halloween party for them that was a huge success! The girls were all so grateful for the attention they got from their one-on-one volunteer. It was an amazing night full of games, prizes, dancing and laughter!
Currently we are working to collect enough blankets, gloves, socks, and hats to keep between 300 and 400 of Austin’s homeless community warm this winter. My family all went to Walmart together to purchase what we could, but we would love to collect more from you! If you have any of the above-mentioned items that you would like to donate, please let me know and I would be happy to come get them from you. Or better yet, come join us on Sunday, January 30th downtown and hand them out yourself along with a hot meal! What better way can you think of to spend an afternoon…by helping others! Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or see the website http://www.austinangels.net/ for more information.
Lots of good things going on so I’m really going to try to blog again. My goal is to have blogs that just tell “the short of it”. I figure if I don’t overwhelm myself by thinking I must have a long, descriptive blog each day I may actually be able to stick with this…we’ll see.
Well, that’s the short of it for today. Tomorrow I plan on letting you know about Austin Angels!