Yesterday evening at around 6 I heard a meek little knock at the door followed by the ringing of the doorbell.  I went downstairs and I see the little girl (8 yo) from across the street.  Uh, LG is not coming out to play, so I open the door and prepare to tell her this.

“Hi, Ms. Nerd Girl. My dad wants to talk to you.”  Oh really….

So the dad comes across the street.  “Hey Mrs. Nerd Girl, how are you?”  “Good.  You?”  “Oh, I’m good.  Look, uh, the living situation at the house has changed.” “Okaaaay….” “Well, uh, my girlfriend, her daughter (8 yo), and our daughter (baby) don’t live there anymore.”  “I’m sorry to hear that.”  “Well, uh, yeah. So I was wondering if uh, D, could um, ride the bus with LG in the mornings.”  “Yes, that’s fine.”  “Well, see, uh, I have to leave for work at 6:30, so really I’m asking if she can come over at 6:30 and wait until the bus comes at 6:50?”

Hold up.  I think I’ve mentioned this before, but when we moved in 9 years ago we were the only black people on the block.  Still are – except for the occasional renter.  Okay, whatever.  Well at the time this dude’s parents lived in the house across the street.  When the dad saw who was moving in apparently he – who had never spoken to any of the neighbors before – ran around talking about “the blacks are coming, the blacks are coming.”  Thank you Paul Revere…anyhoo, all our other neighbors are cool.  Reserved, but friendly.  Those folks never spoke.  Until they noticed I was pregnant and then the wife would wave or speak, but dude would not.

Fast forward 6.5 years.  The mother and father move out and give their son, his girlfriend, his daughter, and her daughter the house.  The kids spoke.  The girlfriend spoke.  Dude?  Did not.  They went on and had a daughter together.  And Sunday?  She took her two and broke camp.

Which brings us to yesterday afternoon when he sent his kid over to ring the doorbell so he could ask me if I’d watch his kid for 20 minutes every morning so she can get on the bus safely.

Of course, I said yes.  It’s not her fault it took her daddy 108 months to decide to speak.  And then only when he needed something.

What would you have done?



Who Are You Rooting For?

Saturday marked the first home game for the JSU Tigers this football season.  So of course, my little family and I got our tickets and prepared to partake in all of the joy that I believe can only be found at a HBCU tailgate/football game.

Smoochy, as always, got all the provisions and headed to the stadium early, early, early to help the other dudes set up and get their drink on start cooking.  LG and I don’t usually arrive until about 2 hours before the game, but since we were playing Southern and I wanted to park in the stadium, we got there around 12:30.

LG and I begin the short trek into the tailgating area. “Hey lady. Looking good. Can I have 30 seconds of your time?” “Thank you, and no, but you enjoy the game.” “But I’m a Christian. My daddy’s a deacon. I’m a good man.”  iHollered!  I hope he’s able to take a nice girl home to meet his deacon daddy real soon!

Anywhoo, we ate and visited and napped until around 3 when we all headed in the stadium.  I tell you what – the fashions y’all, the fashions! I saw everything from butt cheeks hanging out of cut off shorts to suede boots to everything in between!  I was most taken aback by the groups – yes, plural – of men dressed as dancers.  These dudes were up in the stands in leotards, crop tops, shimmy shirts and short shorts doing dance routines.  Between by bad vision and my disbelief, I never would’ve known they were male had it not been for everyone around me shouting “Yes, Nerd Girl, those are dudes. For real!”  Alright, alright, no need to holler…

There were also all manner of tattoos.  From the ladies with their names tatted in script across their chests (why?!?!?!?!??) to this lady who was sitting across the aisle with this on her thigh:

Yes, I stared at this tat for a good portion of the game. The only words I could make out were “everlasting” and “thing.” Maybe it was a verse of poetry?? A line from 2 Chainz??









After the game we went back to the tailgate.  I was sitting around trying not to fall asleep (the heat was brutal! I was drained) when I looked up and who did I see but my high school prom date strolling through the parking lot selling incense!  He went to Southern, majored in history, and refuses to work for “the man” so he makes his living as a vendor.  He’s a really nice dude and I was thrilled to see him and catch up!  Not very often I see someone I knew from waaaay back in the day.  And when I say “not very often” I mean never.  I stay slightly envious of those of you who see people who you grew up with on an even semi-regular basis.  I’ll try to remember to post our prom pic tomorrow.  Oh, and if you think Smoochy didn’t clown me for “almost marrying” incense man, you’d be wrong.  Sir, one date does not an almost-husband make!!

Anyhoo, we had a great time.  We were all exhausted and drained – it was hotter out there than anyone expected.  We spent all day Sunday laying around, listening to Bill Withers and Aretha Franklin, and flipping through the latest InStyle magazine.  Wait.  That was probably just me.  Smoochy and LG were left to their own devices.

What’d you do this weekend? Are you a football fan? Who are your teams? Are you as shocked as the Cowboys are that they won????

C25KD1 aka Couch to 5K Day 1

Y’all!  I promise I am not going to post about every run I do (mostly ’cause there probably won’t be that many) but let me tell you – I’ve been hoodwinked! Bamboozled! Led astray! Run amuck!

Remember I signed up for C25K with the Y, yes?  Okay.  Last night was our first outing.  In preparation I downloaded a C25K app so I could see what I was in for.  The app outlined a 30 minute workout.  5 minutes of warm up, 20 minutes of run/walk, and 5 minutes of cool down.

Um, yeah.  Our group – there are 6 of us – met up at 6 to do the dang thang.  We’re led by some perky chick who could give the Kenyans a run for their money – she runs those crazy long races.  She’s also 7 weeks pregnant.  Heifer.  Anyway, where was I?

Oh yes.  We meet up and start with a 5 minute warm up walk.  I’m feeling this.  We then run. For 2 minutes!  Ma’am.  I just got off the couch.  Shouldn’t we ease into this?!?!?  What happened to the nice 90 second jog?  And we did all three miles!  I thought we’d start off with a nice 1 mile routine or something.  Nope.  We jogged/walked for an entire 3 miles.  Took us 42 minutes.  I wanted to cry.  My thighs are waging their own protest by refusing to function in the manner to which I have become accustomed.  By the time I regain feeling in my thighs it’ll be Thursday.  And time to run again.  Jesus, be some working quadriceps muscles.



No Justice, No Peace

Yesterday afternoon, after we went to the bunk dinosaur exhibit at the convention center, I asked LG what she wanted to do.  She wanted to go to Jus.tice.  Huh?

But yes, I’d heard her correctly.  My newly 8-year old child wanted to go shopping.  For clothes.  In a cute, trendy little store.  So I told her we’d go take a look.

No ma’am!  The clothes are cute (some of them) and very much on trend.  They also cost way more than I am willing to shell out on clothes for someone who may not even be able to wear them in December she grows so fast.  LG was particularly enchanted by a faux-fur vest, a crocheted sweater, and a pair of sparkly shoes.  The vest was $40, the sweater was $38, and the shoes were $50.  I’m not going to lie – I don’t spend that much on most of my clothes.  iCant.

So I told LG that while I appreciate her forward fashion sense, most of the items in that particular store were outside of our budget.  That we could replicate the looks for far less by shopping at Tarjhay and Chi.ldrens Place.  We swung by those two stores and found similar items for much, much less – about 60-65% less.  The colored jeans at Jus.tice that cost $40? $14 at Tarjhay.

She’s concerned that “all her friends” have clothes from Jus.tice and she does not.  I told her I appreciated her concerns and I get them – I really do.  But.  We’re not living our lives to keep up with anyone else.  My goal is to keep her cute and clothed – not to outfit her in a bunch of overpriced clothes that will be the color of  Yazoo clay every day by the time I pick her up from aftercare.

I think she got it.  But she’s 8.  I know this will be a conversation we will have many, many more times.  I can hardly wait…

Where do you stand when it comes to outfitting your littles? Designer down?  Strictly budget?  A mix?  Do they have input?  Are there certain stores in which you shop for them?  As they get older – or if they’re already teens – do you spend more so they can have a particular brand or look that’s in?  I’m not trying to count anybody’s money, I’d just like to know where you stand.  Thanks!!


Backyard Boogie Oogie Oogie

This post has nothing to do with backyards or boogies.  But Mac 10 has been running through my head for the last few days so I thought I’d share!

“Straight from Inglewood and you know that it’s all good!”  Okay, moving along…

  • Our next book club read will be The Story of Beautiful Girl by Rachel Simon.  We’ll discuss on Monday, October 22.
  • Remember those 8 pounds the doctor suggested I lose?  5 of them are gone!  Woo hoo and all that jazz!
  • Speaking of shedding excess poundage.  I got caught up y’all.  Caught up in all of the tweets and blog stories and feelings of success & exhilaration and so I have…drum-roll please…signed up for Couch to 5K.  It’s with the Y, so childcare is not an issue.  Starting next week, I’ll be running.  Have mercy.
  • There are two older women in my office who are, to put it bluntly, bitchy.  My friend who is the director of operations for the office wants to call a staff meeting to straighten them out.  Uh, how are you going to tell these women who are pushing 60 that they need to be kinder, gentler people?  Those old biddies are not trying to hear that!
  • My brother called me and told me he was bored with life in general.  I told him to concentrate on doing something for others and/or taking a class or two to explore something he’s interested in.  When I get bored like that I go back to school.  Or have a child.  How do you cope when you feel restless with your life?
  • If you think I’ve gone and purchased a dress for my brother’s wedding?  You’d be wrong.  Why am I playing like this wedding isn’t in three weeks?!?
  • I’ve been playing with eye makeup so I can get all glam for the wedding.  My eye makeup, when I wear it, is usually a brown shadow and a bit of mascara. This morning I went for a darker, more dramatic look.  LG told me I looked like I had a black eye.  Or was very tired.  #SmokeyEyeFail
  • Speaking of my pint-sized beauty adviser, that chick ran by me this morning and there I stood – in a cloud of funk!  Ma’am! What are you doing in the bathtub?  Or rather, what are you not doing?!? Tonight, I’m watching the festivities ’cause she is too old to be missing hot spots and smelling like onions and outdoors.

And that’s it!  Should be a nice, relaxing weekend.  LG wants to go to a dinosaur exhibit so I’m going to make that happen.  Hopefully I’ll remember to go buy a dress for the wedding, and the rest of the weekend will be spent in my armchair reading while Smoochy watches every football game in the U.S. of A.

Hope your weekend is absolutely wonderful ~ enjoy!!


Big Girl, Good Times!

My little Chiquita Banana turned 8 on Saturday, September 8.  Can you believe it?!?!  Mama’s little bundle of joy is no longer all that little – though she still brings much joy!

I’d already warned her that she was not having a birthday party this year.  I don’t have any hard and fast rules about when she will/will not have a party – I just knew I didn’t feel like it this year.  She’s a party animal, but she took the news well.  I told her that she and a friend or two could do something – movies, pizza, Chuck E Cheese, whatever.  She chose…rollerskating with her two cousins.  She also invited a girl from school, but the child’s mom never called me back.

So Saturday afternoon, I scooped up the girls and we headed over to a new skating rink that a black lady has opened.  I figured we’d give it a shot.  Well…it was nice.  For the most part.  There’s a lounge with TVs and pool tables, a “shake it” room for dancing, and the skating rink.  But there’s no carpet! You know how most rinks have a carpeted area for you to put your skates on and get your bearing?  Yeah, none of that.  And no rail to hold on to.  And the rink was concrete.  I grew up skating on concrete sidewalks, but every rink I’ve ever been to has had wood floors.  Have I mentioned that none of us are expert skaters?

Anyhoo, Smoochy met us there (straight off the road) and the grand plan was for the girls to skate their little hearts out.  They were all terrified because of the aforementioned issues, but everyone gave it a go.  And then they asked me to skate.  Um…okay.

So I got my never-really-been-a-great-skater self some skates and took a few slow, but cool laps around the rink.  And then.  I fell.  And that ish hurt!  But I’d been telling the girls that falling was a part of it and they had to get up and try again.  So I willed myself to ignore the pain and kept skating.  But I can’t lie – I didn’t want to!

Anyhoo, we skated for a couple of hours and then went back to house for a birthday dinner of tacos and all the trimmings.  The younger girls played with old and new toys alike while my older niece (almost 13) raided my nail supplies and gave herself a mani/pedi.  She also sweet talked me out of a few bottles of polish and my new dotting tool.  Kid better be glad I love her!

And that, was birthday number 8.  My chick was moving so fast that I didn’t even take the picture we’ve taken of every year – her sitting in “my” armchair.  I’m going to rectify that this evening and we’ll just have to pretend it was taken on Saturday!

She insisted on opening a gift as soon as she got out of the bed (at 7 a.m. no less!) so I let her open her gift from my parents – she was all kinds of hyped about that iTunes card! She wants to download every teeny bop song ever made!!










Playing with her new Orbeez. Those little beads? Booooo! But she loves it, and I love her, so it’s all good!


5 x 2 On Friday

  • This year’s DNC has me all in my feelings! I am more energized and excited about the upcoming elections than I have been about politics for a long time.  And by long time, I mean the 2008 elections 😉  I’m pretty sure that I’m preaching to the choir, but please make sure that you’re registered to vote and that you have any and all forms of identification needed to ensure that your vote counts.
  • I’ve been running around shouting out random sound-bites from various speeches.  My favorite two right now?  “Arithmetic!” and “Double down on the trickle down!”  I’m pretty sure people are sick of me right about now.
  • My youngest brother has decided he will not be attending my middle brother’s wedding next month.  I had a slight…fit on Twitter the other night when I first found out.  And now I’m over it.  I will continue to pray for restoration.  Moving on!
  • Had my physical last week.  Doc suggested that since I am on the upper end of the acceptable weight limits, I lose 8 pounds and maintain that weight for the rest of my life.  Done!  I’d been going to the gym 2x a week, I’ve kicked that up to 4 and have started tracking my calories again.  We got this.
  • I still haven’t been shopping for a dress for the wedding.  Maybe next weekend.  I’ll keep y’all posted.
  • Head over to my Mom’s spot and suggest songs for the mother/son wedding dance if you please.
  • Ooh – we may be going to Spain next summer. I am saving like a fiend to make both the trip and the down payment for my car a reality!
  • For those of you with children, how many activities do they participate in?  I’ve limited LG to two – Girl Scouts and Karate. She want to play basketball (which I think is in January and February).  I’ve always been pretty adamant about keeping her schedule manageable for both of us, but I think we could swing an extra activity for 60 days.  Thoughts?
  • I want an Obama Tshirt.  But I have a policy against wearing people’s names/faces on my person.  O_o
  • I’m thinking about getting an MBA.  But everyone vetoes that brilliant idea.  They are – to quote Psonya – loser face losers!