Friday, January 29, 2010

Vengeance will be ours!

While I never addressed it here on my blog, in November 2009, my purse was stolen. I will recount those details here. I know what you're thinking...purse many details can there be?...Well, let me just lay it out for you!

It was Friday, November 13th , and I had taken Mikey to Brookwood Hospital to have his vasectomy. Thankfully, that part of the day went off without a hitch. When Mikey put on his hospital gown he gave me his wallet. We've been together 5 years and do you know how many times I've ever had his wallet in my purse besides this one? ZERO. ZILCH. NONE. That will become an important detail in a minute. We left and came home to get Mikey settled for his "weekend of rest". I went to go get his prescription filled and get some snacks for him from Wal-mart. While on my way, I stopped by my moms to pick up Charlie. We headed to Wal-mart and when Charlie and I were on our way in, I decided to switch buggies to put his car seat in one that it would fit better in(there are 3 different buggies at our wal-mart and only one of them is infant-carrier friendly). I switched his car seat to a buggy that had been left beside the handicapped parking spaces. We went in, did our shopping for around 15 minutes, and got in line to check out. That is when I realized my purse was missing. For a second I thought maybe I left it in the car, but it didn't take me long to realize what I'd done. When I switched Charlie's buggy, I had inadvertently left my purse behind.

Well, in the best of situations a nice old lady would've found my purse and turned it into customer service. Well, lets just say we didn't get the best of situations, we got the worst. But I'll get to that in a minute. So I immediately rushed outside hoping to see a glimpse of my bright yellow leather purse, but lo and behold it wasn't there. I went back inside to see if anyone had turned it in and no one had. I went back out to my car and called my mom, and when I was trying to tell her what happened, I broke down into tears. I was sad and frustrated and embarrassed, and well, lets just be honest, I was PISSEd! I had mom call Mikey because I was afraid he was going to be really mad. (he wasn't by the way).

So mom met me at the Sumiton Police Department where I was going to file a report. That was about the time that Mikey and I both remembered that his wallet was also in my purse. Talk about adding salt to an open wound. Mikey got our neighbors and friends Anthony and Karyn to bring him up to the police station because, remember, he wasn't supposed to be doing anything. Can I just say, when I filed the police report, I felt like I was dealing with Barney Fife and his merry band of brothers. It was quite obvious to me that nothing was going to be done on their end.
I left and went home and was awake all night because I had committed another big NO NO. I had all (mine, Mikey, Huett, Sam and Charlie's) of our social security cards in my purse because I had just taken them to mom's the previous week to sign us up for our yearly enrollment for health insurance and they were still in my wallet. I was so worried not about mine or even Mikey's so much, but I was so afraid(and still am a little) that someone was going to steal the boys' identity. We also called all of the credit bureaus to put alerts on all of our social security numbers so I was just praying that would be enough.
Well, on Sunday night, while I had Huett and Sam at preschool choir practice at church, Mikey got a call from a blocked number on his cell phone. The guy on the phone said he found Mikey's wallet in a purse in his mom's front yard and that he knew we would want it back. He said there was no money in it(it originally had around $150 in it) but that all of our other stuff was there. Mikey told the guy repeatedly that he would come and get it from him, but they guy told Mikey that he couldn't meet him because he was on probation. I guess he was afraid we would turn him in or something. I don't really know. He said that he would get his girlfriend to call back and meet us. We never heard a thing from either of them. In retrospect, I think they were looking for reward money, but who can really be sure.
Well about a month passed and nothing happened, when all of a sudden my checks on our new checking account started getting declined at stores where they clear your check immediately. I knew there was plenty of money in the account so I wasn't sure what was going on. Shortly after that, the bank called and said they had several checks come into our closed account from Gamestop for around $2,000. Apparently when you write a check, they don't check funds in the account when they run it through and give you the check back, they are just checking your license number. Well, mine and Mikey's were flagged because of the bad checks to gamestop. Well, the next day in the mail we get a letter from Belk saying that they needed further information to process our credit application. We didn't apply for a Belk credit card. We don't do credit at all, so this was particularly frustrating. We immediately called the number on the letter to Belk's fraud department and got it taken care of. Proof positive that so far, the alerts to our SS# worked because normally the credit card would've been issued on-site, same day.
This is where it really gets interesting. The next night around 8:30 PM our home phone rings(no one really calls our home phone so we don't answer it a lot of the time but this time I did for some reason) and it was a man who said he was looking for someone who test drove a car that day. I reassured him that it was neither Mikey or myself and I asked him was he sure he had the right number. He said he was sure and that it was the right address. That is when I proceeded to tell him about the stolen purse, identity theft, etc. and let Mikey get on the phone.
The man was from a car dealership in Bessemer. He said that earlier that day, a man came in to test drive a car. The car dealer thought the man came alone. He used Mikey's license for his test-drive and left it with the dealer. What the dealer didn't know was that there was someone else in the other car. When the man went alone for his test drive without the dealer because, remember the dealer thought the mans car was empty, and who would abandon their own car to steal another, He drove away and never came back and the driver of the other car sped off too. So basically this man stole a car using my husbands identity, and it was all my fault. Talk about feeling guilty. So Mikey heads out, with my dad, to the Brighton Police Department at 10:00 at night. For those of you who don't know, Brighton is definitely not the place to be late at night. When he arrived at the police station, the car dealer came there and told them that Mikey was definitely not the man who stole the car. Mikey said the car dealer was drunk and he looked very upset. I guess he realized he was going to have to take that loss. If he would've just looked at Mikey's ID, he would've know this man wasn't 6'4" 245 lbs. like Mikey is, just like every other person that accepted his bad checks would've if they would've just paid attention. Mikey was actually able to get his license back that night at the police station.
The next day we started receiving letters from Target about returned checks that WE obviously didn't write. In 2 days, he wrote 4 checks to Target for around $1600.
So in about a 3 day span, this man wrote almost $4000 worth of bad checks, tried to open a credit card in Mikey's name, and stole a freakin' car! And might I just add, on some of the checks to Game Stop he went so far as to write Mikey's Alabama Power Employee ID number and change the phone number and address to attempt to prove his identity so I have to believe someone there must've questioned him a little bit. Conniving Thief! Mikey got to go to the police station in Birmingham to see the footage of him at Target on the security camera and he was carrying Mikey's exact same wallet too. That really made Mikey mad!
Once the car was stolen and Mikey had his license back, we never received any more bad check notifications and nothing else happened. If you ask me, I think that whoever stole my purse and called Mikey turned around and sold its contents to this man because nothing happened for an entire month and then all these things happened in 3 days. Also, I think he ran out of checks and that is why he was willing to give up Mikey's license to steal the car because he really didn't have any use for it anymore.
Fast forward a month later. Everything has pretty much died down. Mikey and his mom have taken the Huett and Sam to the circus and I am at home with Charlie and Archer when Mikey receives a call from the lady who was working in customer service at Wal-mart when my purse was stolen. She said she was on and there was a post about a purse thief being arrested in Sumiton. Mikey called and told me to look it up. I tried but in the back of my mind I thought no way is it the guy. I mean months have passed, and we haven't heard a word from any law enforcement. I searched and searched and finally I found what he was talking about.
Much to my pleasant surprise, it was the guy. Right there in the news feed was an article detailing what had happened to us, and apparently several of his other victims. It said that he had warrants for his arrest in Shelby, Jefferson, and Blount counties, that he had robbed a Planet Smoothie, had mugged at woman at The Summit on 280, had broken into a house in Vestavia, and what car was sitting in the driveway? The very one that was reported stolen way back in December from Bessemer Super Highway Auto Sales. The same car described in the mugging at the Summit.
HAHA!! They caught the little $h!+. Today he sits in the county jail.

Oh and did I mention, the day they caught him was our five year anniversary! Happy anniversary to us. This may be sad, but I can't think of a better anniversary present than
a little peace of mind!
To read the article, click here. I hope they put this guy under the jail. I really hope that we can be at his sentencing so I can take the stand and tell the jury just how much distress and heartache this has really caused, but I think that may only happen in murder trials.
One big huge giant massive prayer answered!
And I guess maybe all those Barney Fifes weren't so bad after all!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

get out your reading glasses and a cup of coffee, ladies, this is gonna be a long one!
Today marks our fifth wedding anniversary. It is almost unbelievable to me that 5 entire years have passed. I think I will recount our humble beginnings on this blog so that years later I won't forget how he and I became "Us".
It was the summer of 2003, June to be precise. I had just gotten out of a long relationship and Mikey...well, let's just say I am not really sure what all Mikey may or may not have had going on at the time, but I digress. We met at a party and he begged me to take him home...I of course declined. I gave him a fake number because I was still hung up on my ex. Just a few weeks later, there he was again. A guy I had lived within 15 miles of my whole life, yet had never met or heard of, and here he is 2 weeks in a row... Well I gave him my number this time and we starting "hanging out". I think our first time meeting up, we rode four-wheelers at his Paw Paws house. Glamorous huh(but right up my alley)?
Anyway, we hit it off right from the start. We continued "talking" for the next three weeks, and then I took a trip to the beach.
Well, on this fateful trip, I ran back into my aforementioned ex, and we got back together. (I, however, still really had a thing for Mikey. I don't really know why I went back with the ex but everything happens for a reason right?)
A month later I was single again(no big surprise there) but there was no way I was going to call Mikey after the way I had ended things with him. A few months passed and while he was always in the back of my mind, I was certain that ship had sailed.
Sometime that Fall, a mutual friend of Mikey and myself called and said,"Why don't you call Mikey." I was like,"Where did that come from?" She said, "Well he wants you to call him"! My heart fluttered when she told me that, but I had to keep my cool, right? I said, "I'm not calling him, he can call me!" Well maybe a whole 5 minutes later my phone rang...guess who! Mikey!
I guess I was still on his mind too!
The night he called just happened to be the night of a big party some of my friends from high school were throwing. (This party may or may not still be hailed as the party of the decade but that's off the subject--I just have two words for you...toga! toga!)
Mikey and some of his "boys" came to the party and he was looking good if I may say so myself. That was the first time we had seen each other in months, and I was looking pretty hot too if I might toot my own horn for a minute(it's my blog I can do whatever I want, right!) I could really pull off the Grecian Goddess look back then, but I did have a great designer(thanks Blair!)
Well, We were both kinda sorta dating other people, but (and I think Mikey would agree with me on this) our attraction was too much to deny. We kissed that night and he took me and Trisha (who was ever present in the beginning of our entire relationship ,our whole relationship come to think of it, thanks T-bag) home. We talked a lot, but like I said we were both in other non-serious relationships.
I wasn't really sure where things were headed but within the next few weeks, he stopped "dating" other people, and so did I. That was in mid-January-early February of 2004.
I think it is safe to say we've been together every day since. Yes, there were definitely some speed bumps on the way to the following January that need not be detailed in my blog but that's neither here nor there.
Once we settled on each other, things moved pretty fast. I was looking at engagement rings by August with his mom and my sister (remember that crazy trip...from no money in my Louis Vuitton at Pericos, to Trisha crying on the way home) A secret ring purchase in October(he picked out the exact ring I had shown him at least 6 months earlier on and it was my dream ring!)
Straight to the big oops!!!
In November ( Huett if you read this one day, you may have been conceived accidentally, but there is no doubt God sent you to us when he did for a reason) We found out we were expecting a baby!
My surprise engagement that Mikey had planned for the holidays got moved up and we got engaged on November 18th, 2004 (this day was my parents 26th wedding anniversary which was also the first time we got to see Huett's heart beat on ultrasound).
He proposed at Stix. He got down on one knee in front of my entire family and a room full of strangers with the most beautiful ring and a dozen roses, and of course, I accepted!
We got married 2 months later and had Huett Michael Hill six months after that!
The next year, I got a new job at UAB, and had our second son, Samuel Hunter. A year after that, Mikey changed jobs, too. The next year, we celebrated Huett's 3rd birthday and Sam's 2nd birthday, and we were thrilled to find out we were pregnant again!
Which brings us to 2009, when our baby boy(or the caboose, as my dad always referred to me, the third child)Charlie Lane was born. And Mikey decided to go back to school to finish his teaching degree.
Here we are in 2010.
Daycare poor,
up to our ears in match box cars, and
all things batman and spiderman.
We are more than a little sleep deprived,
but I wouldn't change a thing.
I know it sounds cliche,
but God blessed the broken road...and all that.
I love you Honey!
And in your own words, "Ain't nothin' to it."

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Friday, January 15, 2010

In a panic

The other night I was lying in bed, as I often do, having trouble going to sleep. A recent blog posting I had read from Mckmama (she is one of the blogs I follow) had my brain stirring. She was writing about how she found it easy to remain calm in the midst of the insanity that is having 4 kids under 5. She said all she has to do is remember that one day she is going to miss this.
That really got me in a panic. I started thinking about all of the major things that have passed already. I was thinking, did I do enough when they were babies, can I still remember what it felt like to rock them to sleep, to feed them a bottle, what it felt like to prop their tiny heads up with mine when they weren't quite strong enough to do it on their own(like I do with Charlie right now). I don't worry so much about the time I spent with Huett because I can remember it vividly, and I am right in the midst of it with Charlie, so I know he is getting more than enough snuggle time because I hold him as much as possible, much to my mother's chagrin. It is Sam that I was freaking out about. Can I remember rocking him to sleep? Not too much because he didn't like to be rocked to sleep, he just liked for us to lay him down. Can I remember him getting in the bed with us? Very rarely, and usually only if we went in after him, and even then we ended up taking him back because he would get mad when we touch him. Do I remember carrying him around everywhere? No I don't because he never required that of us. He has been independent from day one. Charlie has been demanding from day one, so I personally don't give any credit to those people who say you can spoil a baby. Charlie came into this world spoiled and Mikey and I knew it from the way he acted in the hospital. He was spoiled before I ever personally got a chance to do it myself. Huett was somewhere in between, spoiled but because we made him that way and Sam was totally different. He was happy and not in need of a constant comforter. He just didn't need me. That is not to say that he ever went without. by any means. I love him and of course always have, but he is, how do I put it, self-sufficient.
And to those of you who would say, " well, that's just classic middle child syndrome." I would have to disagree. I think with a personality like Sam's it wouldn't have mattered in which order he would've came, first, second, or last. He is who he is and while I absolutely would not change it, I wish he would have been a little more needy, a little more temperamental like his older and younger brother, so I could feel like I got a chance to mother him more. I think that is part of the reason that I wanted to let him hold on to his long hair and his pacifier for so long. Those were gentle reminders that he was still a baby, even though reality was staring me down. My middle baby isn't a baby anymore, even if my oldest is. Sam has never needed me the way Huett does, and I think so far, Charlie needs me the most. I hope Sam's independence will carry out into his adulthood.
All of our friends think Sam is the cool one. He is the one that will play with them, and talk to them. I think he would go home with most of Mikey's friends if we would let him, and honestly most of them would probably be glad to take him. He'll be the one that is too cool for mom. Probably the one who gets all the girls, even though from the looks of it, Huett will be able to give him a run for his money...and heaven help me if Charlie is going after the same girls as Huett and Sam because that would mean he is into much older women...(the apple doesn't fall far from the tree Mikey...kidding, kidding).
I'm just afraid that one day I'll look up and they'll all be driving up from football practice in their jersey's and all I'll be good for is a pb&j sandwich before they hole up in their rooms for
Playstation 5 or X-box 1000 marathon or get on the phone with the girl of the week. I know those days are coming and like I has me all

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Sam's birthday came and went without a hitch...I was really hesitant about having his party at Froggy's because it seemed so generic. I like to think of unique and new things for their birthdays, but he insisted on Froggy' make matters worse, he wanted a batman cake. No respectable pastry chef makes a batman cake like he wanted, so I was forced to go with Publix(which turned out to be one of the best tasting cakes I have ever purchased, but I digress). My creativity was feeling really stifled.
I took it upon myself to branch out a little when it came to his birthday party at The Ivy League, where he goes to preschool. I always have to make things complicated...

So, I started basic...seems so plain and simple from here...

This is where we start to spice it up...

I had but my doubts about where to go next, but Charlie convinced me we were on the right path and that with him on board, we couldn't go wrong.

I divided 2 boxes of cake mix into 4 separate mixing bowls.

Then added color. I added way more than the box called for, but I wanted it to be really bright. And it had no effect on the finished product, so no problems there!

This is where the fun began...

I layered the different colors in. I used a medicine dropper to make the letters. I know what you're thinking...aren't you going to just ice right over the letters? Well, yes but if the other preschoolers are anything like mine, they will lick all of the icing off first.

I was able to get pretty creative with it and it was a lot of (messy) fun!

the aforementioned mess...

This is a picture of the finished product...kinda neat huh?

This is the center of one of the cupcakes. Festive huh?? The letters and shapes didn't really turn out, so if you decide to make these on your own, don't waste your time with all that unless you just want to do it for fun. The kids thought it was great. With 3 boys, I have a feeling I am going to get fewer and fewer chances to "snazz up" their parties in the future but I will just sneak it in where I can. It was a big hit with their classmates as well!

Ava Claire was my little helper...bottom line,
Kid tested...Mom approved.
I will be making these again in the future!
Happy Baking!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

A son is...
Trust with dirt on his face
Beauty with a cut on his finger
Wisdom with bubble gum in his hair
and the hope of the future
with a frog in his pocket

Thursday, January 7, 2010

My sister-in-law who has been holed up in her house with my newest niece Taiden had recently been talking about this book, Horton Hatches the Egg. Much to her surprise, my sister and I had never heard of it. Just a few short days later, and Jenny had outfitted both of our families with our own copies. I promptly read it to Huett and Sam at bedtime. Let me just tell you, they love it like they've never loved a book before. From the part where Horton first climbs up on the tree, to where the hunters sneak up on him, and all the way to the end where an "elephant bird" hatches, they want to know "why" and "whats that?" They both agree they don't like it when he's in the snow and ice, and the rainy page where its thundering and lightening is scary. I read with great animation (I should've been a school teacher) and they are really intrigued. So if you haven't read it, or if you just haven't read it to your kids, then I recommend that you do! It's a classic!
And Jenny, just so you know, the favor will soon be returned with a special surprise just for your little ones (well actually more for you, but you'll understand when you see it!)
Happy snow days everybody...and just so I can fit in with every other Alabamian known to man...Roll Tide Roll...or as people like to put on face book RTR!
(Uhoh, I've drank (drunk?) the kool-aid!)

Tuesday, January 5, 2010


As I was sitting in the playroom at my mom's house, feeding Charlie a bottle, I overheard mom and Ava and Sam having a conversation in the nursery.

GranGran:"NO, Don't do that!"

Ava:"Well, can we jump on the bed?"

GranGran:"Yeah, I don't care if you jump on the bed, just don't touch each other!"

Sam and Ava:"Yeah!!"

GranGran:"And don't break anything!"

a few seconds later:

GranGran says,"Don't let that fan cut your head off either!

so...mama called the doctor and the doctor said,"

No more grandkids jumping on the bed!"