It's a new season? :D
It's a new year, and today pretty much marked that.
So, last night I was graced with another service at the First Samoan Full Gospel Pentecostal Church to ring in the new year of 2009. Of course, the service commenced around 9pm, but actually, 9:28pm when I rolled in with the girls in my car. We're always late, and actually, that doesn't speak to well of my family seeing as Pops just became a pastor not too long ago. Very funny aint it? Well, with the New Season, hopefully things change, but in due time I believe it will. Anyhow, church began, the very solemn beginning of praise and worship songs rung throughout the cold walls of the church. It was an old building that our church had been renting for pretty much the past 10 years. We are a small church of about 45. I know, not your average great mass choired church with several pastors and a youth group you can actually call a group, just a few families all connected by blood at some point in our family bloodlines. Haha. Anyhow, the typical 2 hour testimony part of the service began - but of course. It's the last service of YEAR so everyone wants to share their two cents about their year and how they went. I did a little something with my little cousins - sang a beautiful song by Frontline Worship and also performed a dance to a song sung by Donnie McClurklin - I'm walking. The song, I felt, was sang beautiful, however, our dance suffered with no bass and a laptop that played the song with the accompany of a mic to amplify it's sound. Terrible. Never again will we do that again! We only did it because my Aunt Tee demanded that we gave the laptop a try in playing our song from the CD, since we didn't have enough time to search for the chord for the ipod player that had better sound. Ugh. But, we did it, we gave it our all, and regardless of the performance being terrible our off tune, I'm still glad we did it. All for the glory of God right?
As service left us with 23 minutes left until the year 2009, Pastor Emitt walked up to the podium to perform his sermon on what was to be a resounding teaching even to me now. Build. Behave. Belong -- Build up one another. Behave the way you would want others to behave. Belong to a church and make yourself PRESENT this year. He spoke very quickly as he tried very profusely to get out his message within the now, 17 minutes left of the service. We used to do countdowns, but this year, we kindly embraced the year of 2009, rather than anxiously anticipating it's arrival. After, we did the usual, ended the service with a prayer and a closing "amene" and quickly scurried to set up the chairs and the tables of hall to prepare for our midnight "snack" as many samoans would like to call it, consisting of: salsa and guacamole with flour tortilla chips, sweet and sour hotdogs, brownies, pumpkin pie, coconut rice, egg sandwiches, hot dogs with buns and other fattening foods you're not supposed to ring the new year in with. Yeah, tell me about it, and I'm expecting to lose weight this year. SHEESH!
Anyhow, Cole, my oldest brother, summoned me to the kitchen of the church to scuff under his breath a mission for me to run to the grocery store to purchase as much alcohol as I could with $49. I laughed, and didn't really want to do it, but he asked nicely, and although I'd rather have been a pain and a brat and say no, I said I'd do it. Meanwhile my mother was yelling for me to grab my Gramz to take her home. Gramz was a lovely 72 year old woman, still kind in spirit. A victim of type 2 diabetes and also a victim of this family she was now residing with (mine - haha). Even though I loved to see her smile, she was kept to a strict diet, of which didn't make her smile all the time. Early that morning she reached across the table for the tin can that held holiday cookies and helped herself to 3 cookies. I grabbed them from her and said "sasa!" She knew that meant to stay away, but of course, she's 72 and could care less about her health, she just wants to die happy, and literally, for a great cook that she was, could I really keep her from salt, and sugar and seasoning from her food any longer? For her health, I wanted to so badly, but for the richness of her life left here on earth, I almost felt bad for her and gave it to her anyway. Anyhow, it was waaaay past her bedtime and I decided that I would carry out my mothers wishes to take her home and on the way back to the church to help clean, as I halfly anticipated, I would stop by the grocery store to buy the liquor. Needless to say, on New Years eve, in a very small deserted town, all the stores closed 2 hours ago (as it was now almost 1:30a) and the liquor sale time ended at 2am. Poor Cole, sorry dude! :)
I ended up coming home, half having a headache from JunJun telling me that the girls and I were so off key when singing our piece during testimony time. Haha, he was just a hater - he told me I couldn't sing and that he himself could sing better. Personally, I don't agree, but one day if you ever get the chance to judge between the two, I'm sure you'd agree with me over him. :) We got home, and lounged about. Nothing new - we did this EVERYTIME we came home after New Years service. I played Taboo the incorrect way with the girls, Ioli andNanny and my brother Taggo. Taggo is a funny character, my younger brother of 2 years, and he has a very humorous spirit. I have to admit, he is quite the character on the daily basis - even that day and every day before since he entered the city of Baker a couple of days ago he kept insisting on everyone calling him "Daddy" as if he could even take care of a household with that title -- cough, which he CAN'T. LoL. Anyhow, after a good 45 mins of the game, all of our eyelids fell heavily under the sleep dust of the new year and went to bed.
I slept next to Gramz, as always. She never liked it when I slept in the living room, which occasionally, I did. If I ever did she would tell me that she hated me, not that she really did, but every time I'm home, she makes room left for me to sleep there, and I usually just hop into bed once I get home, and snuggle under the covers right next to her, and fall into a deep sleep. So, that night I did. I had sent my last text message to Dougie, my handsome honey. Hehe. He had called me at 12:08am of that day just to make himself the first person I talked to that year, and he was. :) He's so sweet and sentimental like that at times. LoL. Anyhow, after that, my lids fell and off I was to lala land. :)
I woke up later that morning when Pops came to wake me to let me know he had finished the BBQ - he had hoped that I stayed to at least eat with the family before I came back to Drake Town - where I now reside after graduating from Drake University. I woke up, had a hotdog, two ribs, a slice of boneless chicken and a small serving of rice - trying to get right in the new year! LoL. The BBQ was the same recipe Pops uses EVERY time he BBQ's - nothing fantastic, but nothing terrible, just the usual. The whole family had awaken by then and soon we were all crowding the table that only sat 8 people - when there were actually 13 people trying to eat at the time. LoL. That was our usual routine. Grab a plate, sit down and eat. Get up promptly after you are done to make room for someone else who's ready to sit down and eat. It was quite crowded in the house by this time, but we'll get to that later.
As the sun began to set from noon, the boys decided to get into a basketball tournament with the other boys in the town. They had been playing every days since Saturday! Today is Thursday (or well, now Friday) and they couldn't get enough playing basketball. It was super cold out at the park, but it wasn't cold enough to keep the boys in. Oh no, they had skin made of suede, and they were almost NEVER effected by a temperature below 70 degrees. Dah well, let them do what they do. :) I took the little girls, Nanny, Violet and Love with me to the park in support of the boys. Apparently there was a big tournament of the families going on at the park and they needed our moral support - as if they were some great basketball team to begin with - but we decided to all go. I demanded the girls to bundle up - couldn't have any of them getting sick on my watch, and they all obeyed as directed, which isn't surprising, they're pretty good at listening to their older cousin. :)
We drove up to the park and saw a few of the boys shooting hoops into a rugged old net. The court was an average sized court, on the corner of Rocky Rd and Aytch St. The court sat right next to a huge water tank sitting probably 100 feet high into the air. I don't really know why it was there, perhaps because we were in the desert, and in case of a drastic drought that dried up the land, we'd have the tank to spill over and resuscitate the land. LoL. So we drove up, and there were only a few boys there thus I decided to take the girls to go and help me clean my car. I didn't really want to wash the car on the outside, since it always gets dirty and cleaned again by the unpredictable Drake weather, but I ended up washing it anyway. I stopped by the local grocery store to pull some money out of my Wilshire account at the atm machine (since there was no Wilshire bank in my home city - talk about being a super small town), and I drove the girls off to the hand car wash. It didn't take long for me to wash the car, my hands began aching after holding the trigger for so long to wash, rinse and wax the car. After, Nanny and I doubled up on the vacuum cleaning for the car, and got twice the work done in 4 and a half minutes while Violet and Love sat there watching. LoL. I took them out for some McDonald's as a treat for helping me to clean the car. I ordered the usual McD snack - chocolate shake and small fries, Nanny had the same, and Violet and Love had an Oreo McFlurry - they're favorite.
After pulling out of the McD drive through we shot straight back to the park to watch what was left of the game. We walked in as the Tofee were playing against Lofts. The girls and I finished our snacks in the car - it was only proper to finish it in the car to not take it out of the car since we didn't have enough to share with everyone! :) After doing so, we all walked out of my 4 door Camry onto the blacktop. We all found a little niche on the blacktop to sit and crouch together for body heat. After a good 45 minutes, Violet and Love had to use the restroom, and I absolutely refused to let them use the restroom at the park. EWW! GERMS! They decided to hold their horses as I took them all back home.
At this point, I had already decided with Nanny that she would accompany back home to Drake tonight. Before we headed back home, we took her to her house for her to grab some clothes while I snuck one of her mother’s coconut scronies. Sooo delicious! I asked her for another. Warmed it up for 15 seconds, and I was took a bite into heaven. :) Bliss. After a few mins of being at her house, we took the girls home for me to gather all of my belongings to head out back to Drake. As we walked into the house, Momz asked where the boys were - I didn't know, and she asked "why?! weren't you with them?" - well yes of course mother, I was with them, but we left the park early, so at this very second, I had no idea where they were. Not too long after the girls and I arrived, here popped into the door was Taggo proclaiming that "Daddy was home" after he barged into the door. It was hilarious; he STILL insisted that everyone called him Daddy - what a Loser. LoL.
Pops came to the living room and now decided to do prayer - the pastor of the house would now hold daily prayer meetings with the family. Gordo played the piano, so beautifully. He was my cousin - Vi and Love's older brother. More to come on him later - anyhow, every time we do prayer, we open with a song. Violet opened with a very simple and classic song - Bless the Lord. She did so beautifully, opened on key which made for a beautiful worship song to open prayer. After Pops was done with prayer, Vi and Love opened on an off key... meanwhile Gordo was trying bring them back to the right key by emphasizing on the piano which key to sing, however, the connections were not being made so we had a very distasteful closing - but, it's alright... it happens. I simply told Gordo, that if the girls opened the song on a different key than he is playing, to simply not play the piano - thus, they wouldn't sound so off key. He agreed. and That was that.
I gathered all of my belongings and put them into the car. I had one last plate of Pops's BBQ before I hit the road back to Drake with Nanny, and bam, we were out the door and on our way to the gas station. Gas was now cheaper - $1.91. About a month and a half ago it was about $3.00 and about 4 months ago, it was near $5.00. Yeah, I was now able to afford putting in my own gas, as opposed to Momz and Pops giving me their Visa to fill up my tank - or better yet, having them both go together in my car to fill up the tank. :) They really love me, I HAVE to admit. :)
It was routine for me by now, before hitting the 51 freeway I absolutely had to make a stop at Starbucks to order my Chai Tea Latte with soy milk and caramel sauce. Nanny ordered a caramel frapaccino (which I didn't really understand, seeing as it was a cold drink, and it was nearly 65 degrees outside - but then again, I DID have a chocolate milkshake not too long ago -- so, my bad, it wasn't as ridiculous as I thought. lol) - anyway, I paid for our drinks with a 20 dollar bill, grabbed our drinks and we were on our way back to Drake.
The ride took all of about 1 hour and 50 minutes. What pissed me off the most was that along me talking to Nanny, I took a sip of my what was supposed to be Chai Tea Latte with soy milk and caramel sauce and it tasted like disgusting coffee with condensed milk! TOTALLY AND UTTERLY DISTURBED that my drink was not made accordingly, I complained about it for a few seconds to Nanny - and was on my merry way. Haha.
Finally, we arrived to my humble abode in Drake. I introduced Nanny to my roommate Michelle, as she sat curled up on the couch watching TV. After a brief introduction, I dragged all of my belongings upstairs, and sat in bed.
Now I am here, blogging on my day. I just texted Dougie again after telling him to stop picking on Mark, bc he is super sensitive and hyper active - but of course, Dougie ignores me. LoL. And persists. :)
So here I am now, bloggin, at the beginning of the year. I love writing, and since I've been out of college, I haven't been able to write like I used to. Now is the time to do so, it IS a new season, and I am hoping blog at the end of each day. I need to be more active with my life. :) And I hope to do so this way.
** I am really thankful that God gave me the opportunity to get to know Nanny a little bit more. I pretty much shared with her he last two years of my life in about an hour, and now she knows a lot more about me than she thought she did. :)
Thank you Lord for you guidance over me today and for taking me home safely. :) I love you Lord, and I am hoping for change. Help me to edify myself, help me stay encouraged, and help me to empower those around me. :) Thank you Lord.
In Jesus name,