Wednesday, August 27, 2008

He's 3 going on 40...

A few words from The Boy:

-Every day when I pick him up from school, we talk about his day. I get a slip that tells me what they did, but I like him to tell me what his favorite part was and how his day went. I said, "What did you have for lunch today?" He goes, "I don't know, it's *ON* my sheet...."

-Last night we were watching Family Fued. The guy goes, "Name something you see on the back of a car." The Boy hollered, "TRUNK!"

-Yesterday we were driving home and he was telling me about school. He said, "Mom, Sidney flushed the potty TWO TIMES IN A ROW at school." I said, "oh no... that wasn't a good choice. I saw that she got a yellow stick." (different colored sticks are under their name throughout the day measuring how their behavoior is. Yellow is not so good.) He goes, "Yeah... I noticed that."

-I asked him what he wanted for dinner and he wanted eggs. I said, do you want one or two? He insisted on two and I said, last time I made you two and you didn't eat one. He goes, "I want two. Don't argue with me."

WHERE does he hear such things?!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

A sad day on Earth, but a joyful one in Heaven

As much as I love to write, and often just feel words come out of my head, this one is tough. Sometimes, the words aren’t there. Or, there’s too many words, and they won’t go together right. This is one of those times.

Not like I have a deadline on this one. No newsroom is buzzing and time lines to meet. No space requirements or pages to fill. I don’t do that gig anymore.

But this man, Lucious, deserves some blogging. More than that, actually, but it’s the best I can do.

If there was ever a guy who was like Christ on Earth in 2008, it was Lucious Newsom. A guy who quit his job, moved to a town where he didn’t know a soul, and listened to God’s plan for him. That’s not something a lot of people have the faith to do.

God told him to go to Indiana and help the poor. They needed it, Lucious said, and it was his job to help.

So he went.

He told his wife he had to go and he left Tennessee. He started going to grocery stores and begging for food. Anything that was still good, but they were getting rid of, would work. Because it isn’t just at Thanksgiving when we feed the hungry. Lucious always said, “But, what are they going to eat tomorrow?”

And as people heard about what he was doing and were inspired by his acts, they joined, and The Lord’s Pantry was born, where folks could get some food, maybe help with an electric bill or some shoes for a little one starting school. At first it was a donated van, with “THE LORD’S PANTRY” painted on the side, and then Lucious’ work grew into Anna’s House, where the Pantry had a permanent home, and Lucious set up tutors and healthcare for folks who needed it. He helped battered women out of troubling relationships and helped those down on their luck to find work.

He told me once that he’d take pictures of prostitutes downtown to scare them away and out of the area. “Course,” he said, wearing his signature bib overalls, “there’s no film in the camera. But they don’t know that.”

See, Lucious didn’t have a lot himself. Didn’t need it.

“They can’t take Jesus from me,” he said once, when Anna’s House was vandalized during construction. “They can’t take Jesus out of MY heart, and that’s what matters.”

Sure enough, donors came through, for the second time, faith prevailed, and Anna’s House was born, just as Lucious knew God intended it.

My dad, Tim Hahn, was one of many influenced by Lucious. He’d get up early on Saturday mornings, helping to hand out food and take care of the needy and downtrodden.

Every Saturday.

And during the week, he’d filter calls from folks who were in trouble, who maybe thought Lucious could help them. He used to drive our old Toyota Tercel, nicknamed “Ms. Blue” by us, but “Mother Blue” by Lucious, and fill the trunk with groceries and hand them out. Maybe help a little kid shoot hoops, help a mother pay a light bill and find some formula for a baby.

Lucious was curious about what would happen to his people when God decided to send him home. His son was always wanting to take over his ministry, “But I tell him,” Lucious cautioned, “‘Son, it doesn’t pay.’ He doesn’t care.”

And I guess I should mention, Lucious was in his eighties when Tim got to know him, which was more than ten years ago. Tim wanted to take a Saturday morning off the day my brother got married, and he asked Lucious about it, saying he wouldn’t be available the following Saturday.

“Well,” Lucious asked, crunching some figures in his head, “What time is the wedding?”

At least on the north side of Indy, Tim’s carrying Lucious’ torch, organizing food donations, clothes, school supplies and paying electric bills as he remember’s Lucious kind touch and faithful heart. He does it, he says, because that’s what Jesus did.

Simple as that.

Never mind that a lot of the folks up in that area are Spanish speaking and the conversations can be confusing at times. Kindness is always translated easily.

We lost a kind, generous soul on Monday, as Lucious finally entered the gates of Heaven. It doesn’t seem fair that God could send us this awesome guy, who helped so many and inspired anyone who was blessed enough to know him, and then call him home, but it was God’s turn to reward him for his efforts.

Tim’s guess is that, as the angels went to get him, they asked him if he needed anything, adding, “it’s your turn, now.”

I have to agree. That’s a homecoming I would love to see.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

More from Matt, Liz & Madeline

I'm still checking up on Matt Logelin, the guy I blogged about a few months ago who lost his wife one day after their baby girl was born. He's continuing to heal, seeking comfort in friends, strangers, his blog and photography and his travel, and most of all, spending time being an awesome dad to Maddy.

A recent post touched me. He recently was in a car accident and took his car in to get fixed; did it since he was going to be gone on vacation for a few days and wouldn't need his car. A friend came to pick him up and only had a 2-seater car. Liz's car sits in the driveway, untouched since she died. Here is an excerpt from his blog.


car is sitting in front

of the house,

in the spot it’s been sitting

since she died.

i’ve haven’t so much

as opened the door

since before 3/25,

but tonight,

tonight i needed to drive.

hoped to never open the

doors, but

to be honest,

tonight’s as good a night

as any.

some may ask,

“why not just rent a car?”

it’s complicated.

maybe i felt it was time

to drive her car?

i don’t really know.

cara suggested we order

a pizza.

i said no.

got inside.

stared at the steering wheel

in the dark for

more than a few minutes.

saw an empty diet coke

can sitting in the center console.

here come the tears.

reached back

for the only comfort

i know.

for the first time ever

(in the car that is, with no eye contact)

madeline found my

finger before i found her

hand, gripping it without

my help.

i smiled.

I cannot find the words to describe Matt. He's doing an amazing job, and already, at four months old, Maddy knows he's there for her, and they share a bond that no one can break. So so sweet how it was almost like she knew he needed her right then, and was there for him for comfort.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

At the Fair... at the Fair... at the FAIR!!

Gotta love the Indiana State Fair... a favorite event of the Bartlett Family. Kyle loves the 4H stuff and LIVES to look at stuff like quilts and the largest stalk of corn. He’s a small town boy at heart....

He was so damn giddy. I was bored out of my mind. They all look the same after two or three...

Now he's got The Boy into it too. Here they are with the largest stalk of corn in Indiana. Who cares? His remark: "Those same people won last year." I can't tell if the guy on the left is an exhibit at the fair or just a passer by.

Ball State University Class of 2024...

LOVED the bug thing at 4H building... and I thought the quilts were boring...

Watching the tractor parade!

Now this is what I love. People watching. An Asian food booth at the fair? What happened to corn dogs and anything fried? Note the line of customers...

Fried Vegetables... who in the hell goes to the fair for fried vegetables? LOVE the guy looking out the window... "Man... anyone coming? Got some vegetables here all battered up and ready to go...."

Natey was dying to play games and wanted to win a Spider Man SO bad!! Finally we made a deal with a Carnie and let him win a Spidey... he was SO excited!

Five bucks later we had a Spider Man and all was right with the world.

Kyle is already talking about wanting to go back... haven't we seen enough quilts?

The Directory of Superheroes

As I’ve said in previous posts, I’m still not used to the “boy” thing and am slowly learning about superheroes and the fun of bugs, and how to make car noises with my mouth. The other day Nathan asked me a question and I struggled with it a bit.

“Momma, what’s Spider Man’s last name?”

Spidey’s last name...

Well that’s easy.


That’s his last name. Man.

So, if there were a directory of superheroes and characters, it would look like this:

Man, Bat
Man, Iron
Man, Spider

Along with:
Doo, Scooby
Hulk, The Incredible
Joker, The
Squarepants, SpongeBob

So say Spidey and his pals are at the BMV, getting their licenses renewed, and the clerk looks down at her paperwork and says, “Man?” and Spidey, Bat Man and Iron Man all get up. “Oh, I’m sorry...” the clerk says. “Man, comma, Spider...” and Spidey stands up and says, “That’s me...”


*reality check*

“Higgins. Natey, Spidey’s last name is Higgins. Or something like that.”

“No it’s not. It’s Shooter-Guy. SpiderMan Shooter-Guy.”

So there you have it. I thought my theory made more sense. But when you’re three, its apparent that Spidey’s last name is Shooter Guy.

Wonder if that’s hyphenated. Let’s see... Guy, Spider Man Shooter.....

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Catey Costlow on the web

Catey's pops started up a blog. He promises pictures. Check it out:

More pics of my OWN kid coming soon, with his latest one-liners to shortly follow. Here's a pic just for the hell of it:

Keep praying on the job status... no update to report.

Live from Carmel, I'm Emily Bartlett.