Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Grannyazzi!!!!

It's no secret that I love to scrapbook, but perhaps even more than the actual art of scrapbooking, I love to buy scrapbook stuff. It doesn't matter, just stuff. Paper, adhesive, stickers, embellishments, books, magazines, new fangled gizmos they have out, DVD's....all of it, and it matters not to me if it's on sale or not, if I really like it.

I received an email that a new group of one of my favorite paper lines was arriving at one of my favorite scrapbook stores, so I had to go check it out. When I got there and saw it, I HAD to buy it all. The line was called, Mammarazzi, to go with the theme of paparazzi....crazy star chasing photographers in Europe. So, they created a scrapbook paper with that idea in mind with a crazed mother behind the camera.

How delightful is that? One of the stickers said, "RUN, MOM'S GOT THE CAMERA!!!" OMG!!! I could SO here my son saying that! (Just yesterday, actually, and he's 28!) And my newest addition to the family just looks at me, her and her little 19 month old self, and just says, "NO!" when Granny says, "Look at Granny and smile!" I haven't gotten a decent picture of her in months.

But I bought all this paper and was bound and determined I was going to get pictures of her in the bluebonnets. I thought maybe Grandpa would go with us, but he was too tired after church to go. So, Alexa and Granny loaded up the camera bag, and ventured out to the bluebonnet field.

I was so excited and full of anticipation as I just KNEW these were going to be remarkable, prize winning pictures and we were going to have so much fun taking them! I was ready!

We get there, I park, and I get the camera over the shoulder, car key in the pocket, extra lens wrapped around the arm, and get the baby out of the car. She is at the age where she latches onto the hip pretty good. We brought her stuffed Easter chicken with us, thinking that would be cute in some of the pictures, her holding the bright yellow Easter chicken in the green grass and beautiful blue bluebonnets. She's got the chicken clutched by the neck, and her legs have me clutched around the waist.

We go over to a tree that I've taken my girls pictures in by the bluebonnets for years now. I try to sit Alexa in the tree.

"Ouch!" I say out loud. I've never had a python around my waist, but I would imagine the feeling is about the same as what this child is doing to me with her legs. She wants NO part of that tree.

"Come on, Honey," I coax. "Sit in the tree for Granny...please."

Isn't going to happen as the grip around my waist gets tighter. Okay, give up that idea, maybe she'll stand by the tree. Nope, my waist is getting smaller as her grip tightens even more. (And while smaller would be a good thing, basically she's just pushing the fat higher and lower, so I'm becoming deformed...) "How strong is this kid?" I wonder.

So, I get a bright idea. I ask to see the chicken. She's all about showing other people her things, and she gladly turns over the chicken. I set the chicken down in the bluebonnets and take its picture. I get the picture up on the viewer of the camera and show it to Alexa.

"See, Chicken likes to have his picture taken in the pretty flowers!!! Does Alexa want her picture taken in the pretty flowers?" I am trying to reason with the 19 month old, pulling out the only card I've got, pretty much.

She mumbles and gurgles some little phrase that I'm sure converted to something like, "Listen, Grandmother, I see all those weeds down there, and while the picture of the stuffed animal is quite adorable in the blue things mixed in those weeds, you've lost your ever loving mind if you think I'm frolicking in that mess. It's way too tall, and well, just needs to be mowed!"

But, of course, I don't understand that, so I try to set her d...o....w....n.

"OUCH!!!!" I let out a little more forcefully this time and look at her. "Easy, Killer!" I tell her...sounding like my youngest daughter.

Then, I saw it. I saw the translation of the gurgle and garble that sounded friendly, but really wasn't. I saw it in her eyes. A determination that told me this child wasn't getting out of my arms.

I drove quite a ways to get a prize winning picture of this beautiful little baby in the bluebonnets, and I decide at that second that she's not going to get the best of me. By golly, I'm Granny-azzi, and I'm going to get my picture!!!

So, I put pry her off my hip, drop my camera off my shoulder in the process and chicken goes tumbling, which sends Alexa into a massive panic attack, reaching and grabbing for the stuffed animal, and I finally get her loose and there she stands.

Magnificent, the beautiful blue see of flowers behind her. The wind blowing her hair gently back. Her little short outfit looking as if it was made for just this day and just this time. The entire setting was perfect.

Except.

For the closed eyes, red cheeks, tears streaming down the face, and mouth wide open with the most horrendous scream coming out of it, little body that's standing before me, with her little arms reached up for the only hope of getting out of these weeds around. Me.

I picked a yellow little daisy type flower for her to hold. She took it from me, stopped the wailing for 3.5 seconds, and then looked down, realized she was still in the weeds and they were touching her bare little legs, and went right back into screaming mode.

I look around to see if the police are heading toward me. I figure by now, someone has called the authorities thinking I'm trying to hurt this poor little baby.

So, I pick her up. I go to the road thinking maybe she can walk along side the road and I can get some pictures of her that way. Maybe not full facial shots (not that I'd want one of those now with her little eyes all red and puffy anyway), but a nice side shot of her touching a flower. Still a prize winner.

We head to the road. She actually wants down, so I put her down. Now, there are probably 20 cars that travel down this road, total, all year long. So, I shouldn't have to worry about cars too much. Well, until I set her feet on the concrete, and then the little side road becomes a major highway!!! Cars are coming, both directions! What on earth?

And guess what?

The child does NOT want to be picked up now. Cars are coming and she's running out into the middle of the road. My camera is flailing all over my back, the extra lens is beating my side to pieces, and this wonderful little granddaughter of mine is making me chase her in the road.

Okay, so this won't win me "Grandmother of the Year" if she gets hit by a car, that's for sure!!!!

I don't even want to think of what the people in the cars are saying to each other.

"Oh my, Henry, look at this lady and this poor little baby! She's running from the lady. You'd think that woman would have enough sense to take the child into the middle of the bluebonnets and not up here on the road. Some people!"

So, I catch the wonderful little snot, throw her up on my hip, and she arches her back, flops almost out of my arms, almost right onto her head on the concrete, and opens the mouth, and, yep, you guessed it, let out a scream that horror movie producers would pay good money for!

Cars are stopped. I don't know how many, and quite frankly, I don't care.

But am I done? Am I defeated yet? NOOOOOO! Granny-azzi is still determined to get her prize winning photo.

I regain my balance and shake the vision of her lying on the road with brain damage out of my mind as I've regained some control over the child. I have to stop in the middle of the road to pick up Chicken before it's run over, and head over to another spot that I like to take pictures in, never, ever making eye contact with anyone in the cars on the road that shouldn't have been there in the first place!

So, I have to go through a little bit of a ditch to get to where I want to go. The legs of life are gripped around my waist so tight, I can barely breathe.

I am going to accomplish my mission. I ignore the pain.

I get her to a thicket of flowers and try, desperately, to get the child to get down.

What does she do?

She grabs Chicken and throws him on the ground and points at it, as if to say, "THERE WOMAN!!! Take your stinkin' picture of the Chicken! He likes it down there, I don't, end of story!"

Well, if you think I gave up with this gesture, you're right. I did. She had me beat, in more ways than one. The bruises around my waist would be very hard to explain if anyone were to see them, #1, and #2, I'm out of spunk. Everything in me is gone. The "throwing of the chicken" was the final gauntlet. I have nothing left to compete with that. I just looked at her and said, "Alright, baby girl, Granny gets it. But one day, little one, one day....you'll WANT me to take your picture. I promise. And when you do, I won't take one. I will take at least a hundred to make up for today! I promise." And, I pick up chicken and we head to the car.

I just wanted a prize winning photo to put with my new photo paper. Was that too much to ask? I didn't think so, but the will of a 19 month old was stronger than my will, so I didn't get my picture.

I wonder how many times I've done that to God? Well, I am pretty sure I still do it to God. "Not thy will, but Mine," he tells us, but do I listen? All He wants is a perfect little life for me full of blessings and surprises along the way all put in place to make me happy. He would never put me in harms way, but would only take me places that would make me better, and bring out the best in me. He wants me to have His prize winning life!

But, I clutch onto whatever it is I can find, plant my will, and refuse to go, refuse to change, refuse to cooperate. I don't understand what He's wanting, or what He's needing, but I don't care. I'm not comfortable, and I'm not going to do it. Something might be uncomfortable. The surroundings might be different than what I'm used to. Doesn't matter. It's not what I want, so I'm going to resist with everything I've got.

God coaxes...."Come, now, dear child. My word says in Matthew 16:24: Then Jesus said unto His disciples, 'If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow Me.'"

To me, that's God saying, "Deny what has you so grounded to this way of life. Deny what has you afraid to follow me. Deny it all, and come on, let's get on with the life I would have you live. I will never leave you, I will never forsake you. I won't take you somewhere and then just leave you."

And yet, I clutch. I grab. I hang on to what I can of a life that's partial, sometimes broken, and I keep control, for what ever reason. Makes no sense. But God's patient with me, ever working, gently getting me to let go. God's patience amazes me. Does it amaze you? Can you see it in your life? Times when you refused something so vehemently that you thought maybe your denial was "right" until God caught you a little off guard and you gave in...you changed. And after the change, actually caught yourself saying, "Man, God wanted me to do this a long time ago. Why didn't I?'

Duh.

Let's just say I'm very thankful I serve a patient God. I'd be in big trouble if I didn't.

And by the way, I took the little munchkin BACK to the bluebonnets, but was smart enough to take the parents this time, and guess what?

SHE STILL WASN'T HAVING ANYTHING TO DO WITH THE WEEDS and I STILL didn't get my prize winning picture. But Granny-azzi is patient. She's learning from the best. She will wait. And one day, that perfect picture opportunity will present itself, and I'll get it!!! And I'll put it on my scrapbook paper and relish in the joy of having that perfect picture to go with that perfect paper. She might be 21, and I might be 90, but it will happen!!!!

Granny-azzi doesn't give up!!!!

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