Thursday, May 28, 2009

Howdy Neighbor!

I love Facebook! It makes me laugh. I was going to chalk it up for another mindless activity but then I realized that my stomach muscles actually get a work-out from all of the laughter. Not to mention that it extends my life expectancy since happy people live longer. So technically...I'm exercising. It's win-win.

The night before last Holly appeared out of Chat Heaven much to my giggle delight. Our conversation when something like this after I posted a comment that for one of the first times in my life...I was actually speechless. (which Mr. Thompson gave a thumbs up "like" sign for - the twerp!)

Holly: What are you speechless about???
JaLae: I just saw my neighbor naked. Buck naked.
Holly: Oh, my gosh!! That is hilarious, on purpose!?
JaLae: Walking in his back yard buck naked. Buck naked.
Holly: Where you like up stairs and he was out doing his rounds or something?
JaLae: I don't know why God would intend for me to see that. I was upstairs and glanced outside when I saw a naked man not run - but stroll into his back yard.
Holly: What the heck! That is so wrong, you need to tell him that is why the mountains were invented and if he wants to live a free life then he needs to move...
JaLae: He like 20 something (I'm still trying to figure out how he can afford the house). He got a new dog which barks all day....and just when I was wishing for one of my brother's BB gun to shoot it the owner comes a prancin'! Buck naked.
Holly; He better be careful or the dog will go looking for a hot dog if you catch my drift. Ha ha!
JaLae: ha ha ha ha
Holly: How are you?
JaLae: Good but you just brought the naked picture back into my mind with that hot dog crack. How are you?
Holly: Really well! Excited for better weather and we are finally all well again!
JaLae: Hey - I actually exercised tonight. Please congratulate me!
Holly: Lady I am so proud of you! What did you do?
JaLae: I went for a 2 mile walk with the husband (actually - to be more exact...I got dragged around the neighborhood by my stupid dog which hasn't quite learned what "heel damn it!" means.

[Censored 15 minute conversation about how we are both qualified to be doctors]

JaLae - Hey, I've been meaning to you think I talk to much about infertility/baby loss on my blog? Be honest with me.. Serious... be honest! I don't want to be a "Debbie Downer".
Holly: No! You don't and you write whatever and how ever many times you want. If people don't want to read it then tell them to get off your blog!
JaLae: That's right! But when they read about naked neighbor....they won't want to! Should I post a pic?

So technically...I guess I wasn't very speechless after all. But hey - chalk it up to more exercise.

Don't talking and typing movements burn calories too?

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Shock and Awe

Do you want to know why I come home and watch mindless TV? Because by 6:00pm I'm tired. Really tired. I'm talking...put my PJ's on and crawl into bed with the TV remote... kind of tired.

But I'm really serious about this finding a hobby business.

Which leads me to today's little Epiphany:

I was standing in the kitchen getting a drink of water while watching the evening news tonight.... when a story came on about all the seismic activity in California. Seems they have had a spike in earthquake activity lately. Talk soon turned to emergency preparedness which always perks my interest because I sometimes see my old Red Cross/FEMA/Homeland Security cronies giving statements on the national news. (It's really how I gauge how out-of-the-loop I am with my former life which usually puts me in a deep and dark depression)

So there I was...just watching TV from my kitchen...when (poof!) I had an out-of-body experience.

I was visited by my former (skinny) self which said, "JaLae Wilson - what the hell are you doing?!" You used to be an Emergency Services Director for goodness sake! Once upon a time you were also a darn Disaster Specialist. How exactly can you have that kind of background...still be employed by the Red Cross....yet not have an organized family disaster supply kit for 2.5 people (+ 2 dogs)?"

That's criminal.


And then the beautiful angel left which got my current (not so skinny) self thinking. I mean... I could manage disaster preparedness, planning and response for a multi-state territory which included a nuclear power well as a chemical stockpile...two military bases and a major metropolitan city...but I don't currently have a simple 72 hour kit?

Come one!

How could this happen?

In my current self's defense, I did "once upon a time" have a very nice (and expense) kit which I used a lot for presentations as I would go around preaching "it's not if... but when..." for all the land to hear. However, I gave it to my sister as a Christmas present a few years ago...and never back-filled it like I intended.


So I guess I know what hobby I'm going to be focused on for the next little while. Disaster Preparedness (aka: Hypocrisy) 101.

Ladies and gentlemen - JaLae Wilson is back in business!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Boob Tube

And just when I thought my reality TV life would be over.....

I found Tori & Dean: Home Sweet Hollywood!

Thank you Oxygen Network. As if I didn't get enough mindless activity with American Idol, Dancing With The Stars, America's Got Talent, Keeping Up With The Kardashians and So You Think You Can Dance.

Now I have Tori & Dean to tuck me in at night.

Awwwww......(big sigh)

Obviously I need a new hobby. Any suggestions?

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Memorial Day Memories

I missed a very important goal.

I wanted to have Colton's headstone in by Memorial Day...but it's not. Matter of fact, it isn't even ordered yet. I've had paperwork and a sketch sitting on my counter for a few months...but I just can't seem to bring myself to sign and approve it.

The epitaph isn't quite right.

This is something that I have struggled with for over a year. As you know, I'm not very good with words so I've been at a loss on what to write on the headstone. Lame excuse, I know....but that is my reality.

How do you sum up your feelings in 10 words or less? How do you find that little statement which will hopefully bring comfort every time you see it? How do you find the right words to memorialize a lost dream and huge hope?

I haven't figured that part out yet and until I baby gets flowers on a grassy spot.

Memorial Day has always been a big day as my parents taught us that it is the day to remember those we love. It is one of my favorite holidays because it reminds me that every life is important. That every life has someone.

For as long as I can remember our family would raid the flowerbeds and cut down all the iris and yellow roses...wrap all of the tin cans, which my mother diligently saved for a year, in tinfoil... and pack everyone in the car for cemetery visits in Nampa, Bruneau and Carey, Idaho.

Bruneau has always been my favorite because it is an little old cemetery with a lot of WWI and WWII veterans buried there. It is a peaceful spot in the middle of a rural nowhere and I love to see all those flags blowing in the breeze. It reminds me of a mini-Arlington.

Speaking of which, one of the most spiritual experiences I've ever had is going to Arlington Cemetery in Washington DC on Memorial Day. I would do this every year that I lived there and miss those memories of peace and patriotism. Those perfect rows of white crosses remind me of sacrifice. Every life is important and no one wins in war.

When I was in college my parents made an extra stop and took us to an old pioneer cemetery on Memorial Day which was covered in weeds. The headstones were falling apart and you could barely read the words. My sister and I were wandering around being careful of snakes when we found a little crumbling angel which has always stuck in my mind. The barely visible words read..."our flower too soon faded". I don't ever remember shedding a tear during our Memorial Day visits with the exception of that one.

So last year my sister gave me a wooden thought box with the words...."our flower too soon faded" engraved on it. I love that box and it serves as a reminder that I need to find something from my heart for my own sweet angel.

It will be engraved in granite by next Memorial Day.

I promise.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

State of Utah vs. Mrs. "H"

Just for the record...the "H" the stands for hillbilly. This was the State of Utah vs. Mrs. Hillbilly.

Where do I begin to tell you about my experience? I sat on the jury stand most of the day wishing that I could have a pen and paper or a video camera so I could adequately remember all of the craziness for my blog. I can't tell you how many times this thought crossed my mind. Blog - blog - blog. Considering the the juror next to me was asleep...I didn't feel bad that my mind was wondering.

The Cast of Characters....
For the Defense: Mr Hillbilly and her impassioned poverty lawyer
For the Prosecution: State attorney who had to be on drugs or he wouldn't have taken this case.

Witnesses for the Defense: Mrs. H's junior hillbilly daughter who was the product of inbreeding.
Witnesses for the Prosecution: a bunch of gang bangers who the State of Utah ceased war on and befriended for the purposes of their case.

The Case....
Mrs. H and her hillbilly daughter were at a local hearing clinic. Upon leaving the clinic Mr. H got flustered in the parking lot due to another vehicle (or the fact that she was operating a motor vehicle - I'm not sure). Mrs. H. backed into another car in the parking lot. One gang banger saw her do it. Said gang banger jumped in front her her car to try and get her to stop. Mrs. H got flustered and/or scared by the Gang Banger and drove away. Gang Banger chased after her on foot down the street. Mrs. H didn't stop. Gang Banger took license number and called the police. Police responded. Police determined that car in parking lot.... belonging to another gang banger...had no damage. As Gang Banger was a witness to an accident (abet accident without damage). Police responded to Mrs. H's house. Mrs. H didn't understand why Police were at her door as she did not recall hitting another car. Mr. H's hillbilly daughter (again the product of inbreeding) became upset and didn't like when Police told her to "shut up". Police looked at Mrs. H's car which was a 1987 Oldsmobile. Police noted a scuff on the bumper which may or may not have been the result of this accident (did I mention that it was a 22 year old car?). Police issued Mrs. H a citation for leaving the scene of an accident (abet an accident without damage). Mrs. H contacted her insurance but nothing further developed as there was no damage to either vehicle. Gang banger who had their car hit sold car one week later (without damage).

Two years later... The State of Utah decides to prosecute Mrs. H for leaving the scene of an accident.

The Jury Pool...
30 citizens of Salt Lake County which received jury summons. Only four of those 30 would be selected as this was not the typical case requiring a jury trial.

Jury Selection...
All 30 potential jurors were marched into court and asked questions by Judge.

I was Juror #10. When asked where I worked I replied, "Red Cross". When asked where my husband worked I again replied, "Red Cross". When asked what we did at Red Cross I replied, "management". When asked what I read each morning I replied, "New York Times and Washington Post online".

Defense Attorney and State Prosecutor then passed notes between themselves selecting the 4 ideal jurors. After 15 minutes...Juror #10 was called as one of the four.

Juror #10 felt like she was back in elementary school gym class getting picked for a team. (Thank goodness I wasn't the ugly fat kid left standing on the wall!)

From there proceeded the longest eight hours of my life!

Five gang bangers testified for the prosecution...3 of which had nothing to do with the case beyond moral support for the witness and person who got their car hit.

Two hillbillies testified for the defense who didn't make a lick of sense and lead me to the only logical conclusion of inbreeding.

Two lawyers spent most of their day getting in trouble by the judge. They were called to her bench at minimum 15 times....spent 30 minutes of "time-out" in her chamber after they turned to each other and started arguing like school children...and at one point were reminded by the judge that this wasn't a capital murder case.

After the lawyers "time-out" the judge came back to her bench and apologized to we the jury... "as this case, nor it's lawyers, were acting as a good reflection of our country's legal system". All four jurors nodded at that accurate statement.

Then we were advised to dismiss a bunch of testimony. No worries Judge - I had already dismissed it. As had the juror next to me who was soundly sleeping.

After the longest eight hours of my life we, the jury, were told that we wouldn't be leaving until we came to a decision as this trial would not continue to the following day. At 5:05 we were dismissed to deliberate.

By 5:10 we had a decision.

Not guilty.

Mrs. H is free again to unintentionally hit cars and then flee the scene of a non-accident.

And I will not get a chance at a "real' case for another two more years as I am now deferred from public service. Thanks a lot State of I am mad at you for two things. 1) wasting taxpayer money and 2) screwing up my chance for Runaway Jury.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Runaway Jury

I've been waiting for 16 years for a jury duty summons to come my way. Alas, it has always evaded me.

Until today.

Last month I received the paperwork putting me on civic notice from May 15 - August 15. I crossed my fingers and promptly mailed the paperwork back with a kiss for good luck. Last week, I did the happy dance when my actual summons arrived for May 18th or 19th. Yesterday...I obediently called in but they only activated Jury Group D, Numbers 1 through 29.

I'm lucky #30.

Today, Dawna the Jury Coordinator called me....little ol' remind me to call the information line after 5:00pm today. Nice lady - not a recording but an actual I'm assuming that I'm important for the jury pool. Not to mention that she gave me parking instructions so I'm thinking...chances are looking good!

So I called the info line after 5:00pm tonight as instructed again and not only did they call back a few numbers from today's group...they also activated numbers 30 through 40 for tomorrow.

That's me and I'm thinking that this is going to be a try-out for something big! Runaway Jury good.

I can't wait!

What exactly does one have to do to try-out for the Jury Foreman job? I'm thinking I'd make a good one. That is unless they ask how I feel about the death penalty and then I'm in trouble. Serious trouble. Or ask if I have ever been on a political protest and then...uh oh. Wonder if they will question my views on John Grisham's Runaway Jury. Hummm.... chances are high that I'll be back at work by noon.

Until then, I'm going to cross my fingers for the Kipling Davis case because I have something to say about that.

Friday, May 15, 2009

The Road To Hell Is Paved With Good Intentions...

How is this for irony?!

Last week I unintentionally spread a rumor about my beloved mother on Facebook. And you know Facebook...I spread it to 150 of my "friends" which in turn spread to their friends...and friend of friends...and friend of friend of friends!

Mistake #1: I started a rumor that my mother had passed away. (again - unintentional!)

Not a big deal except that half of my friends are my mother's friends. And again - Facebook spreads like a bad virus (no pun intended).

Innocently, I posted on Facebook what I was thinking on Sunday...which was "Happy Mother's Day especially to all those who belong to the Grieving Mother's Club". Not so bad, or so I thought.

In my defense, it was the same day that I blogged my previous post here so I was in the same frame of mind. I knew what I meant...and you all know what I meant....however, I guess I didn't think about how that would read to the Facebook community. 99% of those "friends" have no idea what I'm talking about. That was Mistake #2.

Obviously, I should listen to Mr. Thompson and keep personal information closer to home. Mistake #3.

It all started with a comment posted from an old family friend who had read what I was thinking and publically replied like this (for all those friends...and friend of friends...and friend of friend of friends to see)...

"Jay, I didn't know. I loved your Mom a lot. I am sorry for your loss. Please give our best to your family. I lost my Mom last year, and I totally understand."

Mistake #4: I didn't log into Facebook for a few days so the rumor spread...and spread..and spread.

When I finally did log in - I had that public comment...which lead to a few personal messages in my inbox from other friends who also wanted to extend their sympathies a little more personally.

So I quickly began doing damage control. "Oh no - my mother is well and good. Sorry for the confusion. Aaron and I lost a baby last year which was the intention behind my Grieving Mother's Club statement". While I was typing those replies...I'm thinking "oh crap I hope my mother doesn't see this!"

Mistake #5 - I should have thought twice about inviting my mother to be my friend on Facebook. After all, mothers shouldn't know all that their teenage daughters are up to.

Now for the irony....

My mom really is sick. She got a serious infection this last week...which they ironically say is life-threatening. She'll be okay. At least she better be...because I've already done all of my damage control!

I'm trying to work up my courage to tell her what happened but I keep chickening out. Especially because the Loritab keeps wearing off and I need her on pain medicine when I tell her that she can't die - because according to Facebook...she already did!

How exactly do I get myself into all of these messes over...and over...and over...again?!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Planting the perfect rosebush. "Love". Thanks Noelle!

Tulips before... (my flowerbed)

Tulips after... (cemetery)

To where you are.

(Just for the record - I did get passed up for a Mother's Day carnation which made me laugh.)

Saturday, May 9, 2009

The Grieving Mother's Day

I belong to one of the biggest "clubs" on earth, in which none of the members want to be invited- the Grieving Mothers Club, you could call it.

It will always exist, and its members will always long to provide support to new members - perhaps because it brings normalcy to their own experience, or because they simply want to alleviate some of the suffering they know that new members go through.

They remember. When everyone else forgets.

Like on Mother's Day.

Last year we had lost Colton the previous month and fearing for my fragile state, Mr. Thompson followed some really bad advice about not doing anything to acknowledge the special day which celebrates motherhood. I don't know who gave him that advice but he has since realized his folly in listening to it.

Being an older single woman in the Mormon culture (older = beyond 30...) was bad enough on Mother's Day because you feel like you stand out like a sore thumb on that back pew. Especially when the young men hand out flowers but don't give you one because you are sitting alone. You aren't a mother.

As bad as that was a million times worse last year when my well intending Mr. Thompson didn't say anything as we sat through a Sacrament Meeting listening to the joys of motherhood...which concluded with those young men still not handing me a flower. We were sitting childless and alone. Even though I was married now, I didn't appear to be a mother.

I think that was the day I went from the shock of our the grief of our loss.

It was also the day that I found the support of the Grieving Mothers Club. One of my elderly volunteers at the Red Cross sent me a Mother's Day card which I still cherish.

She remembered. When everyone else forgot.

Her words were very simple yet heartfelt. She lost three babies as part of a generation that didn't talk about childbirth or experiences surrounding their loss. In five sentences on a Hallmark card she shared her most deeply held feelings. She knew the pain of the Grieving Mother's Day and wanted to provide a little comfort to me - a new member of the club.

Because of that experience last year, this Mother's Day will be a little different. Today I am going to Linden Nursery to pick out the most beautiful rose bush my beloved mission companion Noelle can help me find. Then Mr. Thompson and I are going to plant it. Tomorrow I'm going to cut down my beautiful all-blooming tulips and take them to the place where my beloved little angel's body rests. I'll also
take a white balloon and let it go as I point my face towards the sun.

And it will be okay if I don't get a flower in church. This mother will be smiling on this the Grieving Mother's Day.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Blah Blah Blah...

I haven't posted anything this week because quite frankly...I don't have anything to say. Really - I don't. I've thought about it. And thought about it. And thought about it.

I got nothin'.


I could tell you about my science experiment that's gone terribly bad this week...but that would probably be TMI.

I could tell you about twisting my ankle in Harmon's Grocery Store...but it's healed.

I could tell you about my staffing issues at work...but that's confidential.

I could tell you about the funny joke a co-worker played on me today...but it backfired. To serious degrees.

I could tell you about the volunteer training Mr. Thompson and I went to tonight for the Oquirrah Hills Temple Open House...but it really isn't that exciting (we get to sit at the back of the tent and make sure that the light bulb doesn't go out on the LCD projector!).

I could tell you about our puppy being possessed by the devil and how she ate two of my shoes this morning....but it wears me out just thinking about it.

I could tell you about my beautiful tulips...but I already did. Twice.

I could tell you that my younger sister just had a baby #4 today...but she stole my brother's name so I feel bad for him.

Again, I got nothin'. Have a great weekend....

Friday, May 1, 2009

Toto...We're Not In Kansas Anymore

To Whom It May Concern:

It's nice being in the west and closer to family and all....but I really miss New York. Five years without the chaos is enough. I've met and married my Mr. Thompson and now it is time to move back "home".

I miss my Emergency Services job and cronies from the Red convenience of the subway...the ghetto Ferris Wheel on Coney Island...Sayid...Sayid's pizza...Sayid's wife who hates me....and his bad family who want to kill me...Cinco de Mayo (my favorite Mexican restaurant)...that Egyptian man at the corner bodega who would give me free Swedish Fish every alarms... having a closet for an apartment...sneaking up the fire escape to sit on the building roof at night...waking up at 3am and having someplace to go in SoHo...fruit markets...DIVERSITY...real bagels....making fun of people from New Jersey...playing Boccie Ball at Spaghetti Park with the neighborhood Italians....Fast Eddie...street hot Gucci...and Prada...and Versace....roasted nut men...sirens...NYFD....NYPD...weekend trips to the "country" (aka: Long Island) and just how plain happy I was there!

I'm talking, fireworks at Disneyland kind of happiness.