Sunday, January 12, 2014

World History Revelations and myTunes

Tonight I helped Molly study for her world civilization final.  Two new ideas emerged during this study session...

1. Whoever create these quizzes is not fluent in what most of us call GRAMMAR. [I am no grammar queen myself but I know a run-on sentence when I see one.  Tonight I saw so many I think I am blind.] 

For example [take an enormous breath now because you won't come up for air for a good three or four minutes while reading it]

True or False: Even though the Magna Carta had been signed, bringing the English monarchs under the law like everyone else, the kings of England lost very little power in the 15th century because the creation of the House of Commons in Parliament actually limited Parliament's power because its membership, more numerous than before, was always divided and arguing, leaving the kings freedom to exercise power 

[What? Seriously?  Is this a statement, a group of clauses that gathered for a conference, or a question?  Is it a medieval torture device?  Is it a joke?]  

I told her she should have written her own T/F out beside it:  My teacher needs to buy some punctuation.  

2.  I took world history at some point in high school.  [At least, according to Craig, it was a requirement.  I don't remember that class at all.  I can't even think of who would be the teacher.  I guess I learned a lot didn't I?] Tonight as I helped Molly study the above mentioned test, this is a conversation I had with Craig:

Me: I have never heard of most of this stuff on this test.  Are you sure it happened?
Craig: Yes Missy.
Me: Did I learn this in world history?
Craig [insert eye roll]:  Yes Missy.
Me: I think you are wrong.  I think this stuff happened since I took world history.  Or they added it to the book after I graduated.  Maybe they wanted us to be without knowledge or something.  

True conversation. I still think he is wrong. 

[On to things that I know are true...]

Tonight at church I felt sorry for the people in front of me.  

I cannot sing. I SUCK at singing  am a horrendous singer.

Now some of you out there know what I'm talking about - admit it.  You can't carry a tune in a tin bucket so you mouth the words when put in the position of singing in a group.  That is me...most of the time.  I love music [it does NOT love me] and I really enjoy worship at my church.  Our praise band plays some awesome music.  In that service it is so loud that I don't feel as bad about my horrible set of pipes.  However, in the regular church service, it isn't loud enough to drown out my singing [I use that term very lightly].  

I know we are just asked to make a joyful noise.

I am sure the people in front of me don't consider it joyful. I apologize.  If we go to church together I will understand if you avoid me so that you don't have to hear me sing. 

You've been warned.    


Saturday, January 11, 2014


Saturday is like one of my most favorite days....

I get to sleep late. [Most of the time anyway.]

I am not required to wear makeup. [I suppose I am not really required to wear it any day but I don't want to scare others.]

I sometimes don't take a shower until the afternoon.  [Some of you are like, "Ewwww!" I don't care.]

I get to spend ALL day with the Shorties. 

Today I went to my  mom and dad's house to help with some cleaning up. Molly gets paid to clean their house but Coop and I just went along for the ride. They've been cleaning out and wanted us to help get some things out of the attic. 

My mom and I went through old Christmas ornaments and decorations.  The very first box she opened had teddy bear stockings.  As soon as I saw them I had a vivid memory of Arden Oaks, the fireplace, big hair, and lots of teddy bears.  My mom likes LOVES teddy bears.  For several years our Christmas' were filled with the furry little creatures.  She handmade ornaments for the tree, had several around the house, and used them on our stockings.  Such great memories of the fun we had growing up.

Several boxes later we got to some things that belonged to my Granny Towery. She made a set of wise men from old dishwashing bottles.  I can remember those things sitting on  her table.  We found a small weeble wobble type Santa Claus that used to sit out around her little tree.  There were other trinkets that evoked a ton of memories....

Eating toast with four small melted pats of butter and all the grits we wanted.

Using towels that would never quite get you dry from the years and years of too much fabric softener.

The rooster that lived in Granny's closet, daring us to open up the door and mess with her good blankets.

Playing games of poker with my Uncle Greg and betting with Cheese Puffs.

The picture of Jesus that hung over her kitchen table.

The endless supply of canned food in the back bedroom. 

Smelling the distinct aroma of the front bedroom as soon as you unchained the door.

Giggling at Granny's conversations during her sleep. 

Making pallets on Saturday nights and laying down, just in time to see Tim Conway then Momma's Family.  [Granny always let us stay up to see Love Boat and Fantasy Island too.]

I am thankful, tonight more than ever, for these precious memories. My dad has her stand mixer in the attic.  As soon as I find the perfect spot for it, I am bringing it home.  I want to be able to look at it every time I cook as a reminder of a saintly woman [with the patience of Job], who kept her money in her bra, a song on her lips, and plenty of toilet paper for everyone.  

As always, its a fantastic day to be Short :)


Thursday, January 9, 2014

Stand Up or Shut Up

My mind has said the words, "Stand up or shut up!" about 5,000 times over the last two days.  

Here are my thoughts...

Luke 12:34, says, "For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." 

  • If you are into gossip and stirring the pot then your heart will be into creating more problems than working to fix them.
  • If negativity rules your life then your heart will lead you to every negative thing around you.
  • If the world revolves around you then your heart will also revolve around you.
  • If you create illusions and ideals and situations out of a skewed reality or perception because that's easier than knowing the facts then your heart will lead you blindly.
  • If making excuses and passing the buck is your day job then your heart is just a drawer full of things that you can't do because you are making a choice not to try.

[This next statement will blow you away....]  
I ain't perfect either.  I get caught up in me, me, ME all the time. Sometimes getting knocked back into reality is exactly what I deserve and it happens a lot.  
The last couple of days have been full of "stuff" and I replied with "Stand up or shut up."  

To me its just very simple [I am simple minded]
You either want to be a part of the solution or part of the problem.  If you are choosing to be part of the problem.....Stand up or shut up.  That isn't being callous or mean or hateful [in my opinion...and everybody has one].  Don't be a busy body.  Stop trying to drum up support for your negativity.  

If there is an issue on your heart that so strongly leads you to discredit someone else's intentions then create a solution or let that be your challenge to "right" what you see as wrong.  

One of my favorite verses in the Bible comes from Colossians 3, verse 23: "Whatever you do, work at it with all of your HEART as if working for the Lord and not for men."  In my eyes and my heart, there is something bigger than what is going on around me.  And it's not about me or what I would do - it is about serving the Lord.  

True story [putting my heart out there for all the world to see]
Several years back I was in a situation where I was told that I was the worst reading teacher in the county.  

"Don't believe me?  Here is your name." 

Yep.  Right there on that big neon pink sheet was Mrs. Short.  Guess you can't argue with hard facts.  

"I don't know what you are complaining really don't have a leg to stand on." 

Yep. Right on that one too.

I had some choices to make right then...should I 
A. Go find some friends, tell them what happened, and have and "I hate so and so" party?  [Tried that one. Didn't make me feel any better.]
B. Go run and hide and just feel sorry for myself.? [Tried that one too. Didn't make me feel any better.]
C. Be challenged?  Throw down the gauntlet?  Take pride in myself, [grab my dignity off of her desk], and figure out a solution? 

[And the winner is???  Letter C.]

You see it was never about me but was about getting out of the way and really living Colossians 3:23. This is how God works....

At the time I was just beginning graduate school.  

In reading education.  

God laid it on my heart, through a dear friend, that until I began doing things in my classroom for His glory and not my own, that things would never change. [Much thanks to Danielle for being a bold witness and for your honesty.]  

In graduate school, I soaked up every single bit of knowledge I could about reading strategies, best practices, formative assessments, inventories and QRIs, data, etc.  But more than that, I let go and I just let God figure it out for me.

I say all this because on that day, sitting at the principal's desk, the words, "Stand up or shut up" were loud and clear.  No. She didn't say those things to me but that is what she meant. 

I believe that if  someone really and truly wants to...
Mend a broken friendship
Right a wrong
Change a perception
Reach out a hand
then they will STAND UP and take up their cause. 

I believe that if someone really and truly wants to....
Stir the pot
Create a problem
Make excuses
Pass the buck
then....well you know the rest....


Wednesday, January 8, 2014


Cancer is an ugly, hateful, awful, wretched disease. 

It creates widows and fatherless children. 
It leaves grandparents searching for answers. 
It sneaks into the lives of women and renders them numb and scared.  
It shatters futures and bank accounts and lives.  

But today, it was not about cancer.  It was about HOPE.  It was about knowing that you know that you know that you know that death is not final when you live in Christ. It was about family. It was about love. 

It was about a boy. 

A boy that taught a group of 8th graders [and a group of adults] to care for those in need....Galatians 6:2 Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.

A boy that united a school and a community with a mischievous smile and a baseball hat...Psalm 133:1 How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity!

A boy that, in his time of greatest need, wanted to keep those around him from seeing what cancer had done to his body but was silently making a statement to everyone willing to listen that his faith never wavered....Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.

A boy that loved Jesus, his family, and a good Krispy Kreme donut....1 Corinthians 13:13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

I was only Scotty's teacher for three short months. After that, I was blessed to call him friend.  

Today was about Scotty.


Saturday, January 4, 2014

Prom Dress for Sale

Ok....all of you moms and dads out there with girls that are going to the prom for the first time here is your chance to buy a gorgeous dress....worn for about 12 hours only!!!  

The dress is a size 10 but has been altered slightly. We are asking $250 [or best offer].  Please send me a message to or leave a comment below.  [This is Molly's last high school prom so any money she gets from her dress goes to a new dress :)  Her parents have a lot to pay for so they would sincerely appreciate one of you out there buying this dress!!]


Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Revolutions for 2014

I love that AT&T commercial with the kid that says he's going to make a revolution.  Here are my revolutions:

  • Devote more time to Bible study. My desire is not to just read verses - I want to study the Word.  I want to understand.  I want to be consumed with God.
  • Devote more time to my children.  Molly will be leaving for college in about 8 months. What we have now will never be the same.
  • Devote more time to my health.  I am fat.  I have high blood pressure. My hair is falling out. I don't take care of myself. No more excuses. If I'm going to spend more time with my children I have to be here and be well to do that.
  • Devote more time to others.  I have this immense desire to feed the world. [I know that sounds terribly cliché and like that song from the 80s.] I want to fix dinner for someone without them expecting it, hand out fast food gift certificates to people that just need a helping hand, pay it forward every time I go to Starbucks or McDonald's to get a coffee, send home 20 more backpacks at school, and refuse to let anyone go without food. 
  • [This one is purely selfish.]  I want more people to read my blog!  I know I am slightly crazy sometimes but I have good stuff to say most of the time. 
My Bible study tonight led me to Philippians.  Here is my verse for this year:

"Forgetting what is behind me and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus." Philippians 3:13b-14  

2013 was good to me - I have no complaints.  I cannot wait to see what God has in store for the Shorties in 2014. ***UPDATE JUST NOW @ 11:57pm - God has answered a prayer for another opportunity to make a little extra money for my family.  GOD.IS.AWESOME!!***

As always, life as a Short is good :)