Don't let the difficulties of the present moments overshadow the reality of God's promises. God's promises still stand. And God's promises are stronger than our failures.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Who's the Smartest Now?

Ok I just love it when this happens. My oldest daughter, Tammy, is a computer teacher. She told me not to tell you she is a computer teacher because she is an EAST Lab Facilitator. I explained that 99.9% of all bloggers won't know what that is but computer teacher they will understand. I have three kids, all teachers, and all of them know waaaaay more about computers than I ever will. Actually, some of my grandchildren know more about computers than I ever will. And the ones who don't are 2 and under. Quite often I call one of my kids, or grandkids, to ask what's wrong with my computer it's doing this weird thing, or how to do something I can't get it to do, or would you please tell your Dad that his computer is really dead this time and he absolutely must fork over the money for a new one and quit using mine. This week my daughter, the computer teacher, called me to ask how to do something on her Google calendar. That's not exactly computer stuff but you get the picture. And I knew!!! I've been telling her forever that I knew more than she did about everything and now she believes it. :)


When my kids were little they were like all kids and asked a gazillion questions about everything they saw and heard and thought I should know the answers. After a while I just snapped and I started answering the whole gazillion questions, whether or not I knew the answer. If they asked, "who is that man?" I answered, "his name is Norman and he lives two streets over and works at the funeral home." I had not a clue who he was but they were satisfied.


If they asked "why is that man driving so fast?" I answered, "his brother is sick in the hospital and he's hurrying to get there." "How did you know that, Mom?" "Oh, I met him 3 days ago at the grocery store and he told me all about it."


"Why don't dogs like cats?" "Well, once there was this dog named Sam and this cat named Charlotte and they were boyfriend and girlfriend and when Charlotte broke up with Sam all of Sam's friends hated Charlotte and then they just hated all cats."


I got so good at it that the lies just spilled out no matter what they asked. After a while they caught on and started asking me questions just to see what I'd come up with. But for a very long time my kids really did think I knew everything. Now of course I know I shouldn't have lied, but I didn't want to warp their brains by letting them think they had a dumb mom! I didn't want them to be ashamed in their own neighborhood. There were a lot of smart people in our neighborhood.


One of the smart people in my neighborhood when I was growing up was Doris. Nobody thought she was smart, especially when she got old. Everybody thought she was crazy, and maybe she was, just a little. After her parents died she lived in their old house and had every single thing her parents had ever had and every single thing she had ever had. She didn't throw away a rubber band or a twist tie because it could be reused. She washed off used aluminum foil and reused it again and again . After her husband died she kept all his clothes and wore them herself because they weren't worn out. When she went to town she dressed in ragged clothes and always had a scarf on her head (so she wouldn't catch a cold and have to go to the doctor). She wouldn't run water through her pipes because she said they were old and the water might leak under the house (she did use the toilet, her one concession to the water issue). When she washed dishes she washed them in a pan and threw the water on her flowers. She had foil on her windows to conserve the heat in the winter and keep out the sun in the summer. When her oven quit about 10 years before she died she just didn't bake anymore. No sense in spending money on that! With the way our economy is now we could use a few of her tips! Water your flowers with leftover dish water and save on the water bill. Cover your windows with foil and lower your electric bill. Quit buying new clothes when the old ones are perfectly wearable, even if we don't like them any more. That's a little extreme but I'm just saying! Doris didn't have a checking account but she did have a savings account, in fact several. She told me often, don't ever have more than $100,000 in any one bank because that's all that's insured in case the bank fails. I thought, seeing her in rags and not seeing her bank statements, Doris you don't have to worry about that 'cause you can't possibly have any money anyway. And besides that banks don't fail in this day and time. You can tell the era she lived through though, can't you? She lived on her Social Security and she saved part of it every month. When she died, well let's just say she could buy and sell me, you and 3 other people. Last week here in Arkansas I heard on the news about a bank that was in trouble. The spokesman said, and I quote, "You don't have to worry if you don't have more than $100,000 in that bank because that much is insured." Bet Doris is up there in heaven saying, "I told you!" She was smarter than we gave her credit for. And I, for one, sure hope she's not looking down from up there watching me spend money on new fabric for quilts when I could be cuttin' up old clothes - she'd be mighty upset!

7 comments:

Purple Pam said...

Great stories. I know what you mean about the kids' questions. They are never ending. My mother's last landlady was a "Doris". Her husband had died, they had no children, and she was alone in a foreign country. She was very frugal. She saved everything, used up everything, wore dirty clothes because it cost money to clean them. After she died, we discovered that she was a millionaire. Her nieces and nephews in Germany inherited it all!

Dawn said...

Ha! I too have computer-savy children that tell me 'how to run and what buttons to push' when it comes to trying to run this silly laptop!

Thank goodness for them!

Charmingdesigns said...

That is a wonderful story! But I think I like your idea of answering questions!! Laurie

The Feathered Nest said...

What a wonderful post!!!! So true too ~ to repurpose and recycle is such a good thing. America has such a disposable mentality. I use my towels till the nub is gone!! It's so nice to meet you and I love your blog too!!! xxoo, Dawn

Veronica said...

Great story. Love how you answered your children's questions. Used your imagination..not lies! LOL My computer-nerd younger sister always comes to me with questions concerning picture programs. They don't know everything! lol

The Blonde Duck said...

The story about the older woman is so true. My husband and I are often looked down on for saving our money and treating eating out as a luxury, not buying expensive toys, etc. However, when the recession gets bad here in the US and folks are losing their houses and cars, we'll still be in our comfy house with money in the bank. We may not be millionaires or live in a huge mansion on a hill, but we're happier than most the folks I know!

val said...

great story....all of them. You know how guys will come up to red lights and rev engines? When my mom was young and I was little, she would just smile and sit there..gradually reving the engine while they didn't notice. When the light turned green, she'd nail it and leave 'em in the dirt. She LOVED to drive fast and KNEW exactly how to do it! hahahahaha.........
Dad calls her Leadfoot Linda!