As we walked into the store my stepmother knelt down and picked up a penny. "Pennies from Heaven," she said. As we walked into the house she found another penny as the rain gently fell upon it. "Pennies from Heaven." "But, it's not heads up," I said. "This side means, Trust in God," she replied.
My flight was delayed until 9:30 PM. I didn't even know planes flew that late. I decided to purchase a magazine and chill for the two hour waiting period knowing in the end I would happily be in Midland.
Nick asked me if I had to choose being in Hawaii for a week or being home for a week which would I choose. I explained if he had been through all that I had the world would understand why I choose family. Truthfully I was like this all my life. I have never taken family for granted. Maybe it is due to the fact I am an only child. Maybe it just the way God made me.
Saturday we enjoyed a leisurely morning of shopping. We ran to the mall and to the Halloween store. Brenda and I had a grand time trying on different disguises and choosing outfits. I am going as a sexy ladybug... It seems I can never be a princess or a fairy. I must let the inner goth roam free. Even as a child I loved dressing in fun masks and being a punk rocker. My whole life has been lived as straight laced so it is fun to be a little crazy at Halloween. Brenda chose a masquerade ball mask and a boa with a blonde wig! Dad is boring and does not dress up. He needs to be a Harley man or a punk rocker.
We took the journey to Stanton Trade Days. I have never been though it was only fifteen minutes away growing up. We saw a few people we knew and browsed the fun booths. I ended up collecting a beautiful rustic Texas Tech candle holder and another candle. There were so many homemade items, but I know next month when I get out to Canton it will be closer to Christmas and easier to buy at the time.
When we got back Dad and Brenda began cooking a feast of chicken and homemade sausage. I went outside to their garden where Dad showed me some green peppers and we picked them for eating. It's always a feast at home... enough of a feast to make me run a bit further today!
I wanted time with the kids so we picked up my "step" niece and nephews and brought them back to the house. I hadn't seen them in two years and I noticed so many things about their growth. Malachi is obsessed with the Army now. He wants to serve his country at nine years old. Aaliyah is creative and enjoys being imaginative. Xander is now three and is incredibly sweet and calm. I try to relish each and every minute with them because their lives are not the most ideal and they are so close, but I always feel it is best to be a mentor and always be there for them. Their mother works two jobs and is a single parent. It blows me away to be our age and do it all. Half of the time I don't give my cat enough food... half of the time I give him too much food... She has the weight of the world on her shoulders, but she gets it done and those kids know Jesus and they know goodness and they know true family values at a young age.
I didn't go to church with them on Sunday, but we did attend the church of football. I donned my new Troy Aikman jersey and we watched the Cowboys. I enjoy watching television with Dad just being there and hanging out with one another.
It was sad to return home as always. I look to a day where I can go to West Texas and not be a plane ride away... I remember a good friend told me there came a point when she went to the airport that she decided that was the last ride. There comes a point we know what makes sense in the world. I came to Dallas for a career, for a husband, for friendship... but, as we mature we realize we make a community wherever we are. My best friends each have their own circle of other friends. It's a hard lesson to learn. It's getting stuck in the middle somewhere not knowing where you truly belong at times. I would love to be in Lubbock one day maybe back on the news... if they offered a normal schedule... Who knows... I miss the camera. It is also not easy being home... People forget that. Though they live in a different house so much reminds me of my Mom. Her trinkets... her old letter jacket... It's incredibly difficult to not pinch yourself and just remember the way it was... Not living in the past, but just knowing once it just was so different. As a family we are all as one now in a sense and we don't feel as if there is a hole without her when we are all together... but, as me... it's always going to be difficult to be home and remember going to those Arts n' Crafts shows in Midland, going to the mall with her in Midland... this... that... maybe it is a good thing to never forget those things. They make me smile. I saw a cow with a sunflower dress and I pointed and began to laugh. Mom would have loved it and it just made me smile even bigger.
Paige Hundemer has asked me to be in her house party. I am also involved in Keilly Shelton & Matt Milantoni's wedding on the same day... It is going to be an insane day. Paige is like my little sister while Matt is Nick's best friend and Keilly is my sorority sister. Such a blessing to have such a fun dilemna.
Lauren and Blair got engaged this weekend as well. I have been friends with Lauren since first grade and Blair since tenth grade... We never thought in high school they would EVER date... but, somehow last year they tried it. They are two of the best people in this world.
Yes... all of these weddings... four of my friends having children this year... I must admit it is highly strange. People keep asking me about my own wedding. I know I am nowhere near it. As much as I want to be married and I yearn for that life... I am just plain not ready. Or maybe I am scared. I'm scared of not being a good wife and not being able to do everything I feel a wife should be and do. I know I'm not a good homemaker, but I do know I'm a great caretaker and I love deeply. I hope love is enough. I can cook and clean... maybe not that great... but... I will never be able to be Mom, Grandmommy or Brenda. I need to realize that. I cook Nick chicken and corn. I clean his room. I mow his lawn. To me this is my way of being that person. It's just never going to be perfect. My chicken will have too much spice. I will miss a spot on his dresser. I will mow the lawn wrong. I want to be Donna Reed! It does make me a little jealous as these others get married and I wonder if there is something wrong with us... But, I guess we all move in our own time. I have it set in my head my parents dated two years then got married. What happens when two years comes and goes?
So... pennies from God. All of these things. All. Blessings thrown at us in weird directions and found in strange places. God says to trust in Him on all of the pennies.