The Misadventures of Cheri

Mortifying my kids one swimsuit at a time

What’s in a name . . . . .

A fellow blogger friend just told us the story of how they chose their children’s names. She then asked us how we got our names. You know, what great, wonderful relative we were named after. What amazing Biblical character we share a name with. What awe inspiring historical figure we got to associate with. So here’s the story of my name . . . . .

My name is Cheri Dawn. My name was supposed to be Crystal Darline. I don’t know where Crystal came from, but Darline (pronounced “Darlene”) is my mom and her mom’s middle name.

Back in the day when I was born, dads weren’t allowed in the delivery room. My mom had just been through a horrible 36 hour labor ordeal with me. She was on whatever drugs they gave you 39 1/2 years ago. And they gave her a lot because she ended up hallucinating. And then we both almost died while she was delivering me. To make matters even worse, there was an earthquake right after all 9 pounds and 10 ounces of me came screaming into the world. Mom says all she remembers from that was the doctor yelling, “Secure the baby. Secure the baby!”

Why they chose the first few minutes after my dramatic birth to push my mom for a name is beyond me. She says she just remembers saying, “Cheri Dawn. C-H-E-R-I Dawn.”

Needless to say, my dad was a bit perplexed when the nurse came out and told him, “Mr. Blanton, would you like to meet your new daughter, Cheri Dawn?” He was so happy my mom and I were fine that he didn’t really think about the name. He says he was shocked and asked the nurse if she was sure she was talking to the right dad. She was.

So there ya go. My name was born out of a near-death-experience-drug-induced-survived-an-Alaskan-earthquake hallucination. And that’s got to be the only reason why she chose such a pain in the butt way to spell my first name. Och, my name. As most of you know . . . . . don’t even get me started! I hope when I get to heaven Jesus takes pity on me and renames me something like Lisa or Angela.

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Things are going good

Mom is still in the hospital and will be until at least Friday. She is flyin’ high on pain meds – lol. The dr. said the radiation should help with the pain pretty quickly. That’s good news.

We’re all doing well. We had a nice visit with her and managed to laugh about a few things. I think it’s hard for Austin to see mom kind of out of it. I told him it was just the pain meds. She was up and around, just kind of loopy. She told us she’d make a really bad drunk. Then she told a guy visiting his wife in the bed next to her that she never wanted to have kids but my dad begged her. And if she wasn’t going to have one he wanted to adopt. She said she told him, “Well, I can at least TRY to have a kid.” It was so funny. She said as soon as she saw my little newborn face, everything changed. And it did. She’s been a fantastic mom.

She and my dad were planning a trip to Hawaii the first of March. She told the doctor she should probably cancel it. He told her not to canel – just postpone. She was happy about that.

I feel good and positive. I’m really prepared for anything and what will be will be. I’ve had almost a year to prepare myself for whatever comes along and I feel I’ve dealt with the acceptance factor. God’s been so good to me. One of my friends told me that her biggest fear is her mom getting sick. I told her it used to be one of mine. But now my biggest fear is having to go through something like this without God. And guess what? I never do. So I really don’t have any major fears anymore. He’s proven Himself beyond faithful!

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We got the results today

The MRI showed three more cancerous tumors on my mom’s spine. The hope is that they’re still very small since the x-ray didn’t show them initially, and don’t think they were there a couple of weeks ago when she had her full body MRI.

Anyway, they want to start radiation tomorrow (Tuesday). Mom asked the doctors at what point do you give up. They told her she wasn’t there yet.

So I feel better. I was prepared for anything. We told the kids tonight and they seemed to handle it well. I know Austin had a harder time with it last time than Amber did. But right after we told them, he played a joke on me. I’ll just keep tabs on how they’re acting.

I’m relieved, yet sad. I know that we’re all here on God’s schedule, not ours. I just pray that these trials are accomplishing something good in me and are working to conform me to the image of His Son (Romans 8:28-29). I don’t want this to be wasted on me!

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Prayers for my mom

My mom’s been in the emergency room all day. They found a tumor on her tailbone and are about 98% sure it’s cancer. I’m just kind of in shock at the moment. I haven’t told the kids anything even though they’re keeping her in the hospital overnight. Tyler should be home soon and we’ll figure out what to do . . . . . I don’t know if I should go see her because I’m sick. Hopefully we’ll know more on Monday.

I’m not really feeling anything. Just kind of sad.

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Taking Chance

Tyler and I watched this HBO movie last night and let’s just say I’m moved. Oh my. I am so thankful to have seen this movie . . . . I never thought I’d ever be saying that about any movie, much less one put out by HBO.

Taking Chance is based on actual events and stars Kevin Bacon as Marine Lt. Col. Michael Strobl. Lt. Col. Stobl volunteered to escort the body of PFC Chance Phelps to his final resting place after he had been killed in action in Iraq. It was a very simple story, based entirely on Strobl’s journal he kept during those few days.

I saw Kevin Bacon on Regis and Kelly Friday. He said Strobl was just so overcome by the support and reverence he experienced from people along every step of his journey. The movie conveys this very, very well.

I don’t have a lot more to say about it other than I believe every person should see it. It’s 100% family safe if you think your kids are old enough to handle the subject matter. There is no gore, swearing, or dialogue that explains too much.

It was simple and it was stunning.

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Cheri’s Tip #24

I used to joke that I was going to write a book called “Cheri’s Book O’ Tips.” I have done so much stupid stuff in my life that I felt compelled to share my mistakes with others. In order to help them – not bring massive amounts of humiliation upon myself, which upon further reflection is a natural by-product. That was years ago . . . . maybe even in my college days. The only tip I remember now was “Don’t ever lick a stick of Icy/Hot.” That’s one of those things you just can’t forget.

This weekend I manged to do something that inspired me to resurrect the old idea. So here is what I’ve randomly named my tip #24 . . . . . . . . . . .

Don’t ever go to a marriage conference when you’re sick.

Oh my gravy. Tyler and I were blessed to be able to attend THIS marriage conference for free. The speakers, Jeff & Debby McElroy, have a passion to help military and first responder families. So where ever they speak, those couples are invited to attend as their guests. If you ever, ever have a chance to hear this couple, I highly recommend it. I’ve been to quite a few marriage seminars/retreats/events-that-never-seem-to-end and I’ve never been as blessed or as encouraged as I was with this one. Okay, that’s my plug, now on to the misery.

Friday night started out fine, thanks to the grande half-caf latte my hubby took me to Starbucks to get before the meeting. I don’t know if it wast the half strength caffeine high that had me thinking I felt better or what . . . . but I started the evening all full of optimism. But we all know that had to come to an end.

The coffee ran straight through me and I managed to step on some poor woman’s foot trying to get out of the pew. I couldn’t exactly see her foot because my eyes were all cloudy with sickness. In fact, my eyes proved to be the worst part of the two days. My eyes watered constantly – again, due to being so sick. I was constantly having to wipe the tears away. I just knew everyone around me thought Tyler and I were suffering from every single marriage problem a couple can suffer from.

{I wouldn’t be surprised if we ended up on someone’s prayer list }

I managed to stumble out of the auditorium last night and breeze back in this morning. But early on, I noticed something. My cold medicine was NOT working. I was stuffy, runny, drippy, sneezy and I’m sure a few more of the Seven Dwarfs. Again, I had the constant eye leaking only today I had the added benefit of a runny nose. And the sneezing. Oh, the sneezing. I don’t sneeze like a normal person. I have to sneeze a minimum of four times, up to a maximum of seven. It just never ends. People think Tyler’s rude because he doesn’t immediately say “God bless you.” He’s just waiting to see if I’m really done or if I’m going to crank another one off.

Things got so foggy today . . . . . at one point Tyler was supposed to share something – heck, who can remember – with me. I told him he could say anything because, as I just pointed out, there was a very high likelihood that I would in fact, not remember anything the man had said.

So after four hours, I again stumbled out of the auditorium and headed straight to bed for the rest of the day. I didn’t teach my class tonight at church, because that involves a whole lot more than just sitting. But Sunday I don’t have anything planned so hopefully I’ll be on the mend.

At least I didn’t have a hacking cough throughout the entire conference. I saved that specialty for tonight.

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You Found Me When No One Else Was Lookin’

And now for the second installment of “YFMWNOOEWL.” That’s not too much to remember is it? I’m sure it will soon be as popular as LOL or BTW. Just give it time. So here we go with some cringe-worthy search items that for some reason, led people to my blog.

his braces
Cost us a fortune.

“pankin” mommy
I would never advocate pankin a kid, not me, nosireeeeeeeeeee.

21 days dont seem so long i miss cheri and i wanna go home
Awwww, I’d miss me, too!

kazuo kawasaki, sugar land, texas
So now someone in Texas wants to imitate Sarah Palin. Great. This world really needs more wannabes.

beth moore put dog to sleep
People, the woman has her own blog . . . . . But I do know that she did in fact lose both of her dogs this summer, and now they have two more named Star and Geli, a border collie and German pointer respectively. And I am not a stalker.

tiffany & co’s me i we
I’m at a loss. Me i we? Is that one of those phrases if you say real fast all together you get another phrase? And if either phrase gets my hubby to buy me something else from Tiffany’s, I’m all for it.

man wearing beri t-shirts
Not to be rude or anything, but I’d run if I ever saw one.

your day probably went better than this
Yeah, it probably did. No one wants to hear about the gigantic splinter I managed to shove under my fingernail about 1/4 inch today. If only my blog was named “What is it NOW” to be cute and not as a running commentary on my life.

When I do my homework my brain hurts
That’s why I quit college. Don’t look to me to inspire yourself to greatness.

dr cheri
Huh. I thought I was the only one who referred to me as such. Obviously the above entry referring to my illustrious college career doesn’t bother this Googler.

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SW Daybook – February 16, 2009

For Today…

Outside my window… it is BEAUTIFUL! I have a ton of yardwork I should do, but I’m sure I won’t.

I am thinking… about my husband’s amazing cousin whom I love as my own – today is her 30th birthday.

From the learning rooms… I’m glad we took today off.

I am thankful for… a puppy who went from a nervous wreck to pure perfection in a week!!!

From the kitchen… it’s a disaster area. I just got dinner in the crock pot so instead of cleaning up the aftermath, I’m blogging.

I am wearing… a lovely ensemble from the “do not wear in public” section of my wardrobe.

I am reading… I started a book by an author I really can’t stomach anymore, hoping this one will be better. So far, it’s not.

I am hoping… my friend, Lori, will start her own blogggity blog!

I am creating… a really cool homemade card for my mother-in-law’s birthday. You can click HERE to see it. I made it for my husband for Valentine’s Day and it was quite a hit.

I am hearing… my daughter on Club Penguin and the puppy whine because the “old dog” won’t play with her.

Around the house… things are pretty quiet. Hubby is at work and son is snowboarding.

One of my favorite things… quiet houses!!! But only occasionally – I would go nuts if it was like this all the time.

A few plans for the rest of the week…family game night, marriage conference, getting my hair shaped up, going to see my parents.

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you…

My sweet girl turned 11 on Friday!

The Simple Woman’s Daybook.

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I Survived! (Maybe a little TMI towards the end . . . . . . )

I did it yet again. I survived February 12, 13 & 14 and am still here to talk about it! At one point, late the evening of the 13th, I was sure I was going to need to be hospitalized for a nervous breakdown, but I made it! Due in large part to my husband and the immense amount of help he was.

So let me give the rundown . . . . . Thursday the 12th was Tyler’s birthday. He had small group that night and I had to take Austin to karate so I knew his celebration would be short. I did manage to make him what he wanted for dinner (pulled pork sandwiches) and a German chocolate cake. OH! Now I know why I was so tired that day. I had to get a lot of stuff done for Amber’s party the next day. Ah-ha! So on top of the cake, I baked two dozen+ cupcakes.

His celebration went great. He had already ordered his gift so there wasn’t much to open . . . . just cards from his parents, sister and my parents. But we had a sweet time together.

Friday I got up way too early and had to make our dining room look like we don’t do school there. I call that room “the room that homeschool ate.” The kids opted to do double school on Thursday so they could have the day of the party off. I had to get everything ready for the party early in the day because I promised Amber and her bff I would take them to Confessions of a Shopaholic, which opened on Amber’s birthday. She has been dying to see it. I think it was a great movie. It gave a realistic scenario of a full blown shopping addiction. And she dug herself out by selling her stuff . . . . . . it wasn’t a cute and easy quick fix. It was also sweet, funny, lighthearted and had just enough romance for the three of us.

By the time the party rolls around, I’m in full blown exhaustion mode. I was just waiting for Tyler to come home so I could get a little help. It was not to be. He ended up working 3 hours overtime . . . . . so I got to deal with the party myself. The girls were good, but I insisted they wait until Tyler got home to have cupcakes and open the presents.

After the festivities, just about the time I’m going to let myself relax, Amber comes upstairs and tells me one of the girls had thrown up. Bless the little girl’s heart, she did make it to the bathroom, but she didn’t manage to get the toilet seat up. Imagine the worst vomit bomb you’ve ever seen exploding in a 1/2 bathroom and you’ll get the picture. Tyler cleaned most of it up as I was doing the “dry heaves while simultaneously wetting your pants” routine.

It’s funny now, but I honestly didn’t know HOW I was going to be able to survive the puke. My man saved the day and said, “I have to clean this stuff out of the back of my patrol car all the time. It doesn’t bother me anymore.” All I could say was a teary, “Thank you,” and go change my clothes.

And then there was Valentine’s Day. I woke up bright and early and made a double batch of pancakes. What joy. What exhilaration. Tyler was off work and helped with absolutely everything . . . . . I would have lost my mind. After all the girls went home, we had our little family V-Day exchange. Cards and candy for the kids, candy for Tyler and cash for me. Sounds HORRIBLY unromantic but it’s what I wanted. I’m trying desperately to save for a Canon Rebel camera and all I wanted was more funds for that.

Then later Tyler gave me my real Valentine’s Day gift. It was four pages typed out of why he loves me. I was bawling like a baby. It was unbelievable . . . . . . I have never been so blessed, yet humbled, in the same breath. I still can’t think about it without getting teary eyed.

So with that, I’ll go. If you’re still reading this, you deserve an award or something. OH!! The puppy just keeps getting better and better. I think we solved the separation anxiety problem. Hallelujah! And now, my Esther Bible study calls . . . . . see you soon!

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Busy, busy day

Today is Amber’s 11th birthday!!! So that means I’m getting ready for her slumber party.

Today is also the 17th anniversary of my and Tyler’s first date. Awwww . . . . . .

And, the idiot that shot at Tyler was found guilty of EVERYTHING this morning – the best being guilty of attempted homicide with special conditions. The special conditions are that he was trying to kill police officers and other law enforcement officials. I’ve been waiting for this day for almost 2 years.

Okay, time to get the house in order . . . . . off to the races!

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