Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Oh Christmas Tree

Since I got hired at a full time job in August, I have been telling my family I most likely will not be home for Christmas. As the season has drawn closer, my heart has ached more, thinking that it has been almost a year since I have visited, at it has looked like it would be more like 2 years until I would get to see my homeland.

To my surprise and joy, this week my work told me I was good to leave for 3 weeks for Christmas!
 This of course, has had Christmas on my mind all week.

One thing I never imagined when I moved to Oklahoma, was how many times I would be accused of lying when I showed people pictures of my home and told them that the giant fir trees that surrounded me were grown up Christmas trees.

So many people here have insisted that Christmas trees are used as such, because they do not grow any bigger than they are at Christmas.

One thing I very much miss about Oregon is the never ending green all around me.  Most of my life I spent every free moment I had in the outdoors, admiring the splendorous plants and animals all around me. Country life in Oregon is very different from country life in Oklahoma. In Oklhoma country is a trailer, junky cars piled up in the yard, and flat wheat fields as far as the eye can see. Don't get me wrong, I love the scenery of's just very different.

Oregon country life still has the junky cars  piled up, but it also entails rolling hills as steep as Oklahomans would call mountains. Trees taller than buildings, deer, birds, and bodies of fresh water.

Most times when I write on this blog, it's to share Oklahoma with my family and friends in Oregon. But I want to take this time to share Oregon with my Oklahoma friends.

All these pictures were taken at my home, at which I lived from age 5 to 21. This is the country life I loved...and here's the grown up Christmas trees, for all who don't believe.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Freaky Fall

Forgive me father for I have sinned. It has been 12 days since my last confession...ehem...I mean blog update.
Fall has come to Tulsa and with it every day has been different. One day I want to wear an eskimo jacket, the next day is shorts weather.
Today has been a denim jeans and t-shirt kind of day.

The fall weather has brought with it some crazy encounters for me.

Last week I went into Hobby Lobby for some new decorations for my dorm. I was in there for about 20 minutes. When I came out I found I left my headlights on. My car would not start. I was a little worried because I had just filled up my tank with gas that was 39 cents cheaper than anywhere else, so I thought I had bought bad gas that killed my engine.

A homeless looking man approached me when he heard my car not starting. He said, "Your starter has gone out. You'll need a new one. I am a mechanic, I can have your car up and running in 20 minutes. Normal price is $2000, I'll only charge you $700.

The guy must have thought I was a car illiterate woman, but I knew better, that it was just my battery died, because I could hear the starter turning, and I know starters don't cost $2000

I kindly smiled and said, thanks but no thanks. Then I got on the phone with my insurance. Sure enough, roadside assistance is covered! Woohoo! Help arrived 15 minutes later, and all I needed was a jump.

The next evening I stopped at walgreens on my way home from work. Drunk guy walks in right behind me. Starts getting mouthy with the staff because they tell him he can't order pizza here. Then he stumbles towards me, and asks me if I work there too. I love drunk people cause they're so fun to mess with...
I give staff a thumbs up that, "I've got this." I say, "No, I'm just another zoo goer looking for the zebras." He asks me if I know where he can get pizza. I say, "I think there's a vendor two doors down at the shoe shop. But good luck getting past the elephants blocking the entrance. You'll wanna buy some of this alligator repellant first." I reach for the nearest object and hand him a hearing aid.
Guy kindly thanks me then stumbles over and pays $30 for a hearing aid, nods his head and walks down the street.
Me and the 2 staff just stood there busting up. Guy is gonna be very curious when he wakes up with his new hearing aid.

We had worker appreciation week at work. They've fed me pizza and cake everyday. I got a good laugh out of one of the cakes made. Old man baby cake.

I put a request in to get christmas break off from work, but still waiting to find out if I will get to be home for the holidays or not.

Then the madness continued today with more crazy frustrating yet crazy good events. Dropped my laptop, thought I broke it. Relieved when I found it still works. Lost my keys. Set my backpack in a puddle of liquid in the bathroom. Slipped and fell because of an acorn. Bird pooped on my shoulder, spilled coffee in class................................... Found $16 in my pocket that I have no clue where it came from. 

This day just got a whole lot better.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

My reason

I have been at my job for a little over a month now. In that time I have been in wrestling matches, been hit, been spit on, had water poured on me, bleach spray sprayed at me, and had hand sanitizer flung at my eyes.
The other day it was supposed to be quiet time, and one person kept being talkative and disruptive. I told him that if he wouldn't be quiet, then I would take everything from his room until bedtime. He hollered back in a snooty tone, "You're so mean, why do you even want to work here?!"

I answered him in his same tone, "For the money!" I of course laughed to let him know I was joking.

I approached him and said, "I am going to be a DHS social worker in two years. I am here for the experience. I am learning from you guys. I am spending the next two years working here, learning how to help you kids, so that when I'm a social worker, I will know better how to train parents, so that other kids like you don't have to end up being sent to a place like this."

His entire mannerism changed in an instant. He replied after a few seconds of silence, "Woah, I've never heard anyone say that before. That's so cool. So I am helping you help other kids?"

I smiled, "Exactly, and that's why I need you to do your best to work with me. Help me help you, instead of always fighting with me. If you could focus on getting better, I can help figure out ways for you to improve. Then you will get to go home, and I will know more how to help other kids get better while never having to leave home."

He answered me, "I like you....I'll do that."

His behavior the past week has been amazing. It turns out all he needed was for someone to say they cared. It was also an eye opener for me. I hadn't really stopped to think about it, until that conversation. I thought the job sounded so cool. An awesome experience is what I kept telling people. But it's so much more than that. It's a life changing experience. I am learning what school could never teach me, how to heal hurt.

Every kid helped today, is a lesson for how to help another kid tomorrow. Helping abused kids is no longer a dream of mine, it's a reality.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Book Ventures!

In March 2010 I turned on my laptop, opened up a new Word document, and typed the first words, "Glenn Jackson stared at the red November sunset. Curiosity glowed in three year old Annie Copeland’s eyes. Cuddling her in his arms, Glenn squeezed his goddaughter tight and smiled as he rocked the porch swing."

Since that first paragraph, the story, "Visionary" has greatly consumed my life. I finished writing it as I drove through Utah, while moving to Oklahoma in July 2012.  For a year I worked on fine tuning and editing it.

Then in July of this year, I took the advice of several literacy agents, and contacted a very welly known professional editor to see if she was interested in working on my story. 

The editor said she loved the sample I sent her, and she put me on her calendar for October 7 to November 4. 

When that is finished, I will be set to start getting some one to publish my book. 

Since I picked up a pencil and started telling stories in 2nd grade, it has been a dream of mine to publish books. Now, I am looking at being a published author hopefully by next year!

      How one simple life became a legend