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Title says it all…

It’s Not All Rainbows and Sprinkles

It’s Not All Rainbows and Sprinkles

So many people think the life of an oilfield wife is something glamorous and wonderful. While it does have it’s perks and it’s moments, it’s not all rainbows and sprinkles.

This past weekend, the kids, dog, and I made a last minute trip out west to spend time with the husband since they were out Monday for President’s Day. We left Friday afternoon after school let out. We don’t get many chances to make a weekend trip to see the husband so we take every one we get. Also, we got to celebrate the boy’s birthday a month later at the restaurant that he wanted his birthday dinner at. So, win win!

Anyway, of the 62 hours that we were in town, the husband was working for 18 of those hours, plus you gotta factor in sleeping. So we probably got to spend about 15 waking hours with him. And that’s being generous. I’m not complaining. We got to see him for 15 whole hours! That’s 15 more hours than we would have been able to spend with him had we not made the trip.

img_1892-jpgAnd here’s a picture of the dog doing what he does best.  Riding a forklift being a wireline boxer.  On his 7th birthday, no less!

So Monday, around noon, we loaded everything and everyone up in the car and headed to grab a bite to eat before hitting the road (me getting hangry with two teens who are also hangry in a car for four and a half hours is not something I’m sure any of us would have survived).

We made the long trek home, with the dog and kids sleeping most of the way. Once home, the girl complained that she wasn’t feeling great at all (she mentioned Monday morning that she was feeling a little crummy and her nose was all stuffed up and runny at the same time). She was running a little bit of a fever, but not enough that we wanted to treat it. I promised her a dose of NyQuil at bedtime. We had dinner and got cleaned up and ready for bed.

We woke up this morning, the girl still wasn’t feeling all that great but she felt like she could make it through the day at school and she wasn’t running a fever. What a trooper! The boy was excited to get back to school because he had track practice this afternoon. I took them to school and came home, made a cup of coffee, and got ready to start my day of doing laundry, planning the week’s menu, grocery shopping, and dog wrangling. One hour after school started, I got a phone call from the lady in the attendance office where my son goes. She said that his teacher had brought him down to the nurses station and as soon as he walked in she could tell he felt horrible and told him to go get his things while she called me to come get him. Sometimes living in a small town has it’s perks.

So I go fetch the boy and bring him home. He changes clothes, I take his temperature (it was a low grade fever), and he goes to lay down. He slept from around 10 this morning until about 7 tonight. Around noon or so I was not only suffering from a headache and a sore throat, but I was cold and couldn’t get warm. On a hunch, I took my temperature. While it was only a low grade fever, it was still a fever, and higher than either of the kids’ temperatures had been.

When it’s time for school to start letting out, I drag myself to the car, pick up the girl child, make a quick run to the grocery store for stuff for soup since we are all sick, and come home. The girl made dinner, chicken noodle soup, (it’s a school project she’s working on, and she was feeling better than anyone else here). Now we are all in our nightclothes watching tv (well, I’m listening to the tv, sipping some Yogi Tea, and typing all this up).

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It’s almost bedtime, and while I’m looking forward to finally closing my eyes for the night and resting so I hopefully feel better tomorrow, I know that there’s a pretty good chance I’ll feel worse tomorrow, the girl will feel even better, and the boy is a toss up on being better or still being sick, and I’ll get to do it all on my own because my amazing husband is working his ass off four and a half hours away wishing he could be home to help me while I’m sick.

But this is what I do.  This is what my life is like.  This is what it’s like to be an oilfield wife.  I am Texas Proud and Oil Field Strong!IMG_1873.JPG.jpeg

 
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Posted by on February 21, 2017 in Family, Kids, Life, Oilfield

 

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I Am an Oilfield Wife

I Am an Oilfield Wife

I am an oilfield wife and a mother. I spend most nights in my bed with my dog instead of my husband. I have gone to school with my children as their dad for Donuts with Dad days when they were younger. I have played the part of both mother and father to the best of my ability for most of the past twelve years.

I got married to my husband by the Justice of the Peace on his lunch break, took him back to the shop, and then drove the three hour trip back home to see my father one last time before he moved to Utah for work. My husband left for a job that night that kept him away from home for almost three weeks. 

I have packed and unpacked our home numerous times (I can’t count them all on one hand) with him being there enough to help load and unload the bulkiest and heaviest of the furniture. 

I have searched for, and found, houses and duplexes for us to live in from sometimes as much as six hours away. 

My husband’s schedule only has him home for four months out of the year. IF he gets all of his scheduled days off AND takes ALL of his vacation days that’s five months out of the year. He’s worked plenty of his days off instead of coming home. He’s gone years without taking any vacation days, unless we were moving and it didn’t fall on his days off. Even then, he only ever took a few days, no where near the amount of vacation time he had. 

I have taken our sick or hurt children to the emergency room on my own. I have spent sleepless nights awake hearing every little noise outside making sure our children are safe. 

I have spent countless hours worrying about my husband. I have spent days without talking or texting with him. I have spent weeks and even months without seeing him. 

I have postponed many Thanksgivings, Christmases, birthdays, and other special days/holidays so that we celebrate when he is home and doesn’t miss out on more than he already does. 

I listen to people complain about how the oilfield is destroying the earth. I hear FAMILY complain about how inconvenient it is for them to deal with the oilfield trash on the roads. I listen to people blame things on the oilfield that are acts of God, not the oilfield. I hear and see how people look down on anyone associated with the oilfield. I have seen firsthand the hurt on my children’s faces when their father’s career choice is talked down upon. I have seen the pride in their faces and the anger in their faces when they talk about what their dad does for a living and when they have people tell their kids not to play with them because of his job. 

I have answered the, “Where’s Dad? When’s he coming home? Will he be here for my birthday?” questions many times when they were younger. They’ve learned that you can celebrate birthdays and holidays any time. It’s not about the day, it’s about the people you share it with. 

I have traveled to see not only my side of the family but his side, too, without him so that my children know their families. I have attended weddings without him. I have attended funerals without him. I have attended pretty much anything you can think of without him. Hell, I have attended his company picnic without him before. 

This is why it pisses me off when I hear how people take their other half for granted. This is why it pisses me off when I listen to people complain that their ex only gets the children every other weekend. This is why it pisses me off when one parent alienates their child from the other parent. This is why it pisses me off when I see people turn up their noses at someone because of their job. This is why it pisses me off when I hear people complain about their other half working late tonight. This is why it pisses me off when I hear people complaining about how damaging the oilfield is. 

My husband puts his life on the line day in and day out. My husband puts his blood and sweat into what he does. My husband sacrifices time at home with family to do his job. My husband helps make sure you have fuel to put in your vehicles. My husband helps get the natural gas put so you can have heat in your home in the winter. 

I am an oilfield wife. 

  

 
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Posted by on April 29, 2016 in Family, Life, Oilfield

 

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10 Facts About Me

10 Facts About Me

We are going to continue getting to know me today.  I’m going to tell you 10 random facts about me that not many people know.  My trusted circle is small.

If you continue reading, you are agreeing to keeping my secrets safe.  You are agreeing that you will only tell no more than 1,573,068,632 people, ever, what I am going to reveal to you in just a few more moments.  This list is not exhaustive of all of my secrets.  It is not even close to all of the nittiest grittiest dirtiest of facts about me.  They aren’t even close.  But they are all true, I swear it.

Now, without further ado, I bring you the much anticipated list of 10 Facts About me!

10. I have a fascination, nay, an obsession, with even numbers.  I can’t even eat M&M’s unless it is two at a time.  If there is any extra left over (I also sort them by color and only eat one color at a time), I offer them first to my husband, my children, and then my boxer dog in that order of their availability.

9. I am an avid reader.  I love to read just about anything.  I’ll pick up a book because it’s on sale and find a new favorite author.  True story.  That really happened.  I picked up a copy of Still Missing by Chevy Stevens one day off of the bargain table at the front of a Barnes & Noble just because the front cover looked super awesome.  I have since bought at least a single copy of each of her following books, sometimes two copies (an e-book and an actual book).  I’ve also won two, that’s right, TWO, advanced reading copies of her books before they were released, thanks to Goodreads.

8. I am a lover of all things I deem awesome.  Like these socks my husband and son surprised me with one day.  Not only are they purple, which is my favorite color, but they are Batman (that’s a whole story by itself), and they have their very own capes!  It just does not get more awesome than that.
awesome socks

7. I am currently 26% fluent in German according to Duolingo.  I must admit that I have come pretty far from just knowing how to say pretty much nothing to actually reading and understanding and knowing what a tweet said last night in my feed, when it was in German!!  I was pretty proud of myself.  Then I woke up this morning, still riding the high, and did today’s lesson.

6.We move around, a lot, for my husband’s job.  In fact, we are in our third house in our third town in as many years.  The last place we lived didn’t have too much room and we left several boxes packed up, sealed, and left alone.  Because of this reason, I have realized, with this most recent move into a slightly larger place with a garage that I don’t NEED all of this stuff. Some of it has no place in my house except to cause clutter.  For this reason, and the fact that I am tired of dealing with clutter and shuffling things around my house all the time, I am taking part in the #Declutter365 mission to help reduce the amount of clutter and to help improve my peace of mind.  I’m following this blog, Home Storage Solutions 101, and doing the daily decluttering missions.  I already have a small tote half full of things to put in our garage sale this spring, along with a few other things we deemed should go to someone else who needs them that we put in a corner of the garage for the same garage sale as we started unpacking the house.

5. I am a die hard Law & Order: SVU fan.  It is my number one favorite show.  I have yet to miss an episode, though I will admit I sometimes record them for a month or so and then binge watch the new episodes.  If there is a marathon on USA, it’s a pretty good bet that I’m watching it, or at least have it playing in the background while I go about my day adulting and such.

4. I have completed a single 5K before, the Color Me Rad 5K.  The kids did it with me.  We had a great time and I would love to do one again soon.

3.  I love to open a bag of chips and see all the chips that were cooked a little bit longer than the others.  We call them darkies and I think they are the best tasting chips in the entire bag.  I once opened a bag and found several just waiting there near the top for me to pick them up and savor them, one at a time.  That was the best bag of chips ever.
darkies

2. I once made the best batch of Loaded Baked Potato Soup in the crock pot once.  I have since tried a couple of times to replicate it, but it hasn’t been as good as that first batch.  That’s another post on it’s own, too.  I promise it’s coming and I promise I’ll share pictures and the recipe I used.

1.Last but not least, there’s this little tidbit of information.  I am a natural blonde.  Even all these thirty plus years later, no matter what color I put in my hair, it is blonde at the roots and grows out blonde.  It’s not as light as it used to be, I attribute that to the boxes and bottle of dye I used on it in middle and high school and the crazy colors I’ve put in it since.  However, I love being a blonde, and the old adage rings true for me.  Blondes have more fun.
selfie
So, there you have it.  10 facts about me.  Tell me something about you.  What is something that not everyone knows, but is ok to tell me?

 
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Posted by on January 5, 2016 in Books, Family, Life

 

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Summer Days

I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted anything.  There’s been a lot, and a lot of nothing, going on.  So, let’s start with July.

Back in June, I signed up for a challenge known as Camp NaNoWriMo.  I challenged myself to write 50,000 words in 31 days.  Because of things coming up unexpectedly, I had to drop my word count goal down to 30,000 and I barely made it.  Final count July 31 right before midnight was 30,146 words.  Whew!  Just by the hair on my chinny chin chin.  Ok, not my chin.  I don’t have hair on my chin.  Just by the hair on my leggy leg legs.

Right before Camp got started, I had to make an unexpected visit to my dentist.  Fortunately, they were able to squeeze me in the next day, and we came up with a LONG plan of things that needed to be done.  The last dentist that I went to, up in Pennsylvania, totally screwed my mouth up.  After everything was all said and done, I ended up with three crowns and nearly eight fillings, although two of them were touch ups to old fillings.  After three months, I am finally done and just down to routine cleanings!!  Yay!  So I had a lot of up and down time.

The kids have also been home.  We’ve been spending some time together, both with and without (but mostly without) their dad home.  We tubed the Comal River.  We walked the River Walk.  We even made a trip to DFW to watch their grandmother walk across the stage and get her bachelors degree in business.  We also went to Albany, Texas for the Fort Griffin Fandangle.  That was amazing!!

My sister spent a week down here.  My grandmother spent a few days.  My mother, stepdad, and sister (and when I say sister both in this sentence and the one a couple before this one, I mean my sister and my nephew) came down for a weekend, which happened to be my nephew’s birthday weekend.  We went to Rainforest Cafe on the River Walk and spent the next day at Schlitterbahn in New Braunfels.  We all had so much fun!  Also, my partner in crime, we will call her Robin so we don’t give away her secret identity, moved back to Texas that same weekend!  Hooray!

Now we are spending the last couple of weeks of August getting ready for school to start back up.  It’s going to be the start of a bittersweet school year for me this year.  My wonderful daughter, Bailey, will be starting middle school this year.  Gasp!  I don’t think I’m ready for this!

And that has just about brought you up to speed.  I’m working on a couple of other posts and hope to have them coming your way pretty soon.

 
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Posted by on August 11, 2013 in Family, Kids, Life, My Book

 

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Fathers on Father’s Day

Fathers on Father’s Day

I just want to start out by saying that when it comes to the whole father thing, I have been totally and completely blessed.  Not only do I have my dad, and an awesome step-dad, but I have TWO amazing father-in-laws.  A girl couldn’t have asked for anything better.

To start this off, we must start at the beginning.  My dad.
buckaroo bonzaiThis man right here is one of the world’s greatest.  Not only is he a kindhearted man who will (almost) give you the shirt off his back if you need it (if it’s hot and sunny, he’s going to burn so he’ll keep it, but he’ll get you another one) but he always tries to do what he feels is right.  He is the owner/operator of the Non-Profit Garage.  Our house was always the house the neighborhood kids would bring their bikes to when they needed air in a tire, a stubborn chain put back on, or the brakes adjusted on.  As the kids in the neighborhood, and our house, got older, they started bringing their cars to him, or asking him to come take a look at their car because it couldn’t even make it up the road to our house.  He did this all for free.  Sometimes there was some grumbling.  Sometimes there was some mumbling.  Sometimes he even griped about it in front of the “customer,” but he always helped them.  I’m pretty sure some of the neighborhood “kids” still ring his doorbell if they have a problem with their car, or even their own kid’s bike.  He’s always been there for me.  Even now that I am thirty and out on my own with two kids and a husband of my own, if I need anything all I have to do is pick up the phone and call.  He is one amazing man, a wonderful father, and the best damn Papa you will ever meet.  Just ask my kids.

This next man came into my life about seven years or so ago.  He may not have been around for my formative years (I was already married with children and a life of my own), but he’s made an impact anyway.
photoThis is the man I call Brentwood, and his faithful and loyal cat Two Stripe.  This is the man who married my mom, even though she had three kids of her own (he came with two) and two grandchildren already.  So one day he went to bed with two kids, and woke up with five kids and two grandkids.  How crazy is that?  We may not have always been cool with each other.  Ok, that was me.  But to be fair, I manned up and talked to him and we are all good now.  If I need someone, all I have to do is call him.  I know this.  He will do whatever needs to be done.  I’m glad that I talked to him and actually gave him a real fighting chance.  He said all he wanted was for us to be a family.  Now we are.  He is part of my family.  He stepped into my mother’s (and therefore my sisters’, my children’s, and my life) and has made himself right at home.  He’s a wonderful Pappy.  All the proof you need is in the way my kids and my nephew talk about him.

Then there’s Uncle Tommy.  What?  Did I just say Uncle Tommy?  Yes.  You read that right.  I call one of my father-in-laws uncle.  No, we are not from Arkansas.
uncle tommyThis is my husband’s dad.  This picture of him was taken at my grandmother’s restaurant, Mary’s Cafe.  Since it was my grandmother’s place, and conveniently located just one mile from my house when I was growing up, I spent a lot of time there.  So do pretty much anyone who ever went there.  We were all one big unconventional happy (sometimes) family.  Right down to the employees and the tea and coffee drinkers.  So this guy here, I grew up calling Uncle Tommy.  I ran around with his niece for the longest time.  We were inseparable for a while during our formative years.  She called him Uncle Tommy.  I called him Uncle Tommy.  I still call him Uncle Tommy.  That’s why some people, those who haven’t known me for forever, hear Kevin and I talking about his dad, they look very confused at first.  But I wouldn’t change it.  He may look scary, but don’t let that big truck driver look fool you.  He is seriously a big softy, just don’t cross him.  He’s really a great guy.  I know I’m not doing him justice, but if I tell all of his secrets he will come find me and then I may never been seen or heard from again.  He will help anyone he can, even if it means he misses out on something.  He’s stubborn and set in his ways, but my kids couldn’t have asked for a better Pawpaw.  You just ask them and see what they say.

That brings us to, last but for certain not least, my other father-in-law, Mark.
lisa and kidsI told you I was blessed.  So is my husband and our children.  This man is my husband’s dad.  He is one of the lucky ones that has two wonderful dads.  Even though I’ve known my husband my entire life, I only met this guy about thirteen years ago, shortly after my husband and I started dating.  Almost immediately, this man made me feel like family.  He still does.  He’s another great guy, again, as long as you don’t cross him.  He’s a quiet one, and it’s always the quiet ones you have to watch out for.  Anyway, back on topic, this guy will be there if you need him.  Anytime.  Anywhere.  And did I mention brilliant?  Kevin obviously didn’t get his brains from this guy.  Haha!  I jest, I jest.  Seriously, though.  This man has made me feel nothing but welcome since I met him.  I’ll go visit without my husband.  That’s when you know you’ve got some great in-laws.  Opa is definitely one to call if you have a problem.

And even though he’s not my father, although sometimes he does ask me, “Who’s your daddy?” (again, I’m kidding…sort of) there’s my husband and the father of my two children.
IMG_1543No, that’s not his real ‘stache.  Haha.  This man here is one of the most amazing and wonderful men I know.  He works hard, he does what needs to be done.  He sacrifices a lot of time with his family so that we can have the things we have.  He works his butt off so that the kids and I are taken care of.  He is willing to miss out on so much so that I can be home in case the kids are sick (or, like right now, out of school for the summer).  I would follow him to the ends of the earth (and almost have…Pennsylvania was way out there) and back again if he asked me to.  He knows how to let loose and have fun, on occasion.  Like the others before him, he will give you the shirt off his back if you needed it.  I have lived the past almost ten years of my life in the oilfield for this man.  It’s not always easy, but someone’s got to do it.  My love for this man grows stronger every day.  I am proud that my children have him to call Daddy.

Happy Father’s Day to these five wonderful dads, and all the other dads (and moms) out there!

 
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Posted by on June 16, 2013 in Family

 

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Oh, The Places I Have Been!

When my husband first started working in the oilfield, about nine years ago, I didn’t realize just how much we would move around.  I knew there would be a little moving, but not as much as there has been.

We were living in Fort Worth, Texas when he hired on with the oilfield.  That moved us to College Station, Texas.  We spent two wonderful years down there.  I must say, up until just very recently, it was probably my favorite place that we lived.  It was home to the Fighting Texas Aggies.  For a college town it was surprisingly peaceful.  I loved it.  It had enough amenities of the big town living, still mingled with small town life.  It just held a magic for me that I can’t describe.  We would travel back to Fort Worth on his weekends off to visit family.  It was a lot of driving, but it wasn’t too bad.

After two years in College Station, the company he worked for opened up a shop in Alvarado, Texas, just south of Fort Worth.  If he transferred to the new shop, a promotion came with it.  So we packed up and headed back home.  We bought a house in a small suburb south of Fort Worth in Crowley, Texas.  We saw family a lot more often.  Both of my children started school, one year right after the other.  We were happy.  It was great.  We spent three years there.  Then it happened again…

He lost his job and hired on with another company.  The catch…the new company was located just southeast of Pittsburgh…Pennsylvania.  He headed up there to get started working and trying to find us a place to live while I packed up our house and did what I could from 1,500 miles away to help him try and find us a house.  After nearly two months apart, it was time for us to leave.  School was starting back up in Texas and we only had about two weeks before school started up in Pennsylvania.  The kids and I loaded up some toys and clothes in my truck and off we went to start this new chapter of our lives.

We lived in a small town northwest of Pittsburgh called Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania.  The house we lived in sat on about three acres that we were responsible for in the middle of corn and hay fields.  It was stunning!  It was beautiful!  Then winter came.  Everything was white white white everywhere you looked.  Come to find out, our first winter there was a record breaking winter.  We had snow drifts in our yard that were six to eight feet deep.  There were days that my husband had to call in to work because the snow was so deep he couldn’t get his four wheel drive company truck out of our driveway.  Yet, we survived.  We didn’t see much of family.  Not hardly any at all.  We were almost all we had up there.  My mom and stepdad moved in with us while he worked with my husband.  They were there for about six months before they moved back to Texas.  Then my sister and nephew lived with us, also for about six months or so.  Then we all moved back home.  Kevin had gotten another job with another company because the one he was with wouldn’t transfer him back to Texas.  He was ready to be home.  So after two beautiful years in Pennsylvania, we were loading back up and moving again.

We landed in East Texas in a town just south of Tyler called Flint, Texas.  Since we were back home we saw family more again.  We lived in a small duplex right by Lake Palestine right on the border of Smith County and I don’t even remember the county next to us anymore.  We met some new friends, the kids went to yet another new school, and we even saw foxes.

I bet you’ll never guess what happened next.  That’s it.  We moved yet again.

Now we are located in South Texas on the northwest side of San Antonio.  We’ve been to the Riverwalk.  We drive by Sea World all the time, though we haven’t gone yet.  The kids started another new school.  We may not see our family as much now as we did when we lived in Tyler, but we are two more hours away than we were there.  We still see them.  We are even trying to make it where we go up to visit about once every other month.  Now that school is out we are going to be a little more flexible on when we can go visit, but of course that all depends on my husband’s work schedule, too.

All in all, in nine years we have changed towns five times for the oilfield.  The kids have mastered being the “new kid” at school.  I have mastered packing and unpacking in nearly record breaking time.  We adapt very well to wherever the oilfield sends us.

 
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Posted by on June 14, 2013 in Life, Oilfield

 

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A Happy Project!

With the summer break upon us, the kids are growing increasingly bored…already.  We have the pool, but I got really sunburnt the other day when we went, so we are avoiding it for a few days.  I should be ready to go back out in the Texas sun tomorrow, provided I use enough sunscreen.

So to keep the kids from getting too bored, I’ve had some ideas rolling around in the head of mine for things to keep them busy.  Later this week, or maybe next week since their dad will be off and home, we are going to put together a couple of birdhouses and then paint them so we can hang them in the yard.  We just got the ones from Lowes, or maybe it was Home Depot.  Either way, it will be something for them to do, but that’s another post.

THIS post is about part of the Happy Project!

Image 6-11-13 at 3.21 PM

Everyone always checks their mail, knowing they aren’t going to really like what they find.  It’s usually either junk mail or bills.  At least that’s what makes up the population in our mailbox.  So we went down to our local Wal-Mart and bought some inexpensive postcards.  A total of nine (which totally goes against my even number thing, but the other choices no one liked, so we were stuck with nine).  The kids each get postcards, and I get one of them.  Each kid picked four people, or couples, to send a postcard to.  The ninth one, mine, I will probably let them both sign and send to some random recipient.  They have made their choices and have chosen aunts, uncles, and grandparents.

These postcards will arrive in their mailboxes either later this week (as in probably this weekend) or early next week.  And when they find them, it will bring a smile to their face.  For two reasons.  The first one being IT’S NOT A BILL!  The second is because someone was thinking of them.  How awesome is that?  And the kids get the satisfaction of knowing that they made someone’s day a little bit better and a little bit brighter.

We also bought a greeting card to send to my nephew with the kids’ spring pictures from the school in it (they didn’t get them until about two weeks before school let out) and a package of Angry Birds Star Wars stickers.  We’re going to make him smile, too.  His very own mail!  What little kid, first grader even, doesn’t love getting their own mail with goodies inside?

Do you have any ideas for a Happy Project?

 
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Posted by on June 11, 2013 in Daughter, Family, Kids, Life, Son

 

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