It was a bittersweet time, though, because Memorial Weekend last year was the last time Grandad was with us at the lake, when the true symptoms of his stroke began to manifest, and we could no longer deny that he was becoming seriously ill.
I must admit, however, that the laughter of children truly does seem to have healing properties. It's just impossible to lose yourself in grief when you have giggling, babbling, singing, dancing, happy little ones around.
God bless those girls.
Our neighbors in our subdivision at the lake organized a little patriotic golf cart "parade" on Saturday, replete with prizes for the best-decorated vehicle. Hold up. Wait a sec... Hello? Did you say prizes? As in, a contest? Ahem. Now, it's not that I consider myself competitive or anything, but I have this annoying little habit whereas I absolutely insist on winning at all costs. Which probably explains why I buy so much stuff on ebay, because to me, being the highest bidder in the last few seconds of the auction feels an awful lot like winning, despite what my husband says. Whatever.
And I don't mean Charlie Sheen's version of "winning", because, well, do I really need to overstate what an oxymoron that is? I'm talking the type of winning where there's a fair-and-square vote. Or a game. Or an auction. Or a race.
It's not like I ever competed in beauty pageants for the love of pete, because we all know how that would turn out. I mean, can you imagine? For the talent portion of the evening, Sarah Wood Thomas will be...what? Writing a story for the judges? Elbowing her way through a sale at Nordstrom? Organizing a party? Reciting the Preamble in her spot-on Elmo voice? Yeah, yeah. I've come to terms with the fact that my Elmo impersonation is not going to win me any pageants. And guess what, I'm totally okay with that.
Ohmagosh, speaking of pageants, ya'll? The other day, I was driving down the Dallas North Tollway and - I kid you not - there was a white SUV with one of those big car magnets on it that read,
"So-and-So, Ms. Senior Texas 2002"
Oh Yes. She did. So-and-So won the Ms. Senior Texas NINE years ago and sista was still proudly bragging about it. On her car! Isnt that greatness? I just love it. I wish I could meet that lady and shake her hand, or maybe take a picture with her for my blog. To have that kind of confidence and to still have it on display nine years after the fact. All I can say is, You go, girl!
God bless that woman.
Okay, enough with that segue.
So, can you blame me for always wanting to win? You try and grow up in the shadow of genius and tell me you wouldn't feel a fierce need to
Anyway, I devoted a lot of time, and a lot of brain power to come up with the best, most award-winningest (sooo not a word) decorative golf-cart float idea which consisted of camouflage costumes for the adults complete with helmets and Army make-up, custom-sewn American flag costumes for the kids, and may or may not have included spray-painting Lexi red, white and blue.
What? Something wrong with that?
This was the First Annual El Dorado Bay Memorial Day Bike & Golf Cart Parade. And daggum it, I wanted to win. I was going to win.
Do you want to know how it turned out?
Because my husband ixnayed the whole idea. (Yes, it's a word. Go look it up). Turns out, he himself has these two annoying little habits of:
A - Not wanting to look like an idiot; and,
B - (Gleefully) being able to point out the flaws in my logic.
In the case of the latter, it went something like this, Okay, hmm. Sarah. You want me to wear what? You only have three days to put the whole float together and you want to sew costumes for the girls? And, oh right, your sewing machine is still in the box on the upper shelf of Caroline's closet. And...YOU WANT TO SPRAY PAINT THE DOG???
What can I say, ya'll? I like to dream big.
In the end, I was forced to scotch tape Dollar Store flags around the perimeter of our golf cart, and bravely smile and wave my sorry little wooden stick flag even though I knew in my heart we weren't going to win. The girls were dressed up cute, though, in red, white, and blue (store-bought) attire. I even tried, as my last ditch Hail Mary, rallying everyone in my Elmo voice, but alas, this year, it was not meant to be. Elmo failed me.
Elmo, and the fact that reality does always not match up with what's in my head. Whatever. It's not like I'm a sore loser or anything.
I admit the 2011 First Annual El Dorado Bay Memorial Day Bike & Golf Cart Parade Best Decorated title went to a golf cart more deserving.
Although I'm holding out hope that if the winning golf cart cannot fulfill its duties...
Meantime, I've already got plans swirling in my head for next year's parade. And all I'm sayin' is, the 2011 winning golf cart better watch its back, because next year, I WILL WIN.
Be honest, though, really? How could THIS not get the vote?