Blog Posts

Be the Sunshine in Someone’s Life Today

sunflowerToday was a good day. I look forward to having many more good days ahead of me. My morning’s have somewhat been a routine since I retired. The alarm goes off at 6:30 and I get out of bed, grab my glasses and head for the kitchen. I reach for a cup in the cupboard and turn on the Keurig. YES…. Coffee in the morning. It’s strange that I drink coffee now because I really never enjoyed it growing up. I just knew that Daddy liked it black and Mom liked it with a bit of cream.  I like to say that I like coffee in my cream.  Back to my routine. Feed the fur babies – make sure to give Chico one antacid mixed in his dog food. Watch the babies to make sure they each eat their own breakfast.  Next – make my sweet husband breakfast if he’s wanting something home cooked.  Grab a load of laundry and throw it in the wash. Kiss my husband goodbye and say, “I love you and have a great day!” then sit outside on the patio, just to take in the morning sunshine or water my beautiful garden. I have to admit that my flowers and plants are no longer dying since I retired. They are getting quite a bit of love, attention and most important WATER. No more dried plants left on the porch for days while telling my husband, ” Yes dear, I promise to plant them.” He usually waited around until they were dead and tossed them in the trash. Calloway’s will no longer be seeing me that often to purchase plants.

While enjoying my time on the patio, I started looking at social media. For me at this time, it is primarily FB. I haven’t yet mastered Twitter or Instagram. I can make a “bounce” video. That should give me a couple of brownie points. I began thinking of my upcoming trip to New Mexico. I’m flying to Corpus Christi, Texas then driving to Freer, Texas. After one night in Freer, I will pack up my parents in the Tahoe and head out west. “Go west young woman.” I apologize. I couldn’t resist saying that. It’s going to be an adventure. Yes. I promise to share the moments with you all. It’s going to be an adventure. Mom, Daddy and me on the road again. We plan to meet up with my husband in Ft. Stockton so he can drive the rest of the way. I am very blessed to have both of my parents still with me on this Earth. Many of my friends say that they  wish they could hear their mom or dad’s voice on the phone. Life is short so I am taking as much time as I can to spend quality time with my parents.

I then began to think of all my friends and family members who are educators. It’s that time of the year where everyone gets excited about the start of a new school year.  I wanted to wish them love, happiness, joy and especially COURAGE as they embark on a new school year. Courage is so important with all that goes on in a child’s life.  Educators truly make a difference in the life of a child. Each child comes to our schools with a “backpack”…figuratively speaking of course. Each backpack is different and unique. There is hope, sadness, excitement, loneliness, happiness, death, divorce  and more in those backpacks. Teachers will need courage to work with all these students. I pray that they love each child and show them how much they care. Those kids are “SUNSHINE” walking in the door.

As I thought about my parents and my friends out on the patio with the sun rays warming my face, it came to me that we are all SUNSHINE! One of my FB posts was “Be the sunshine in someone’s life today.”  So this SUNSHINE decided to do just that.  I walked inside the house and got dressed for the day. Not the typical sweats and t-shirt day but skinny jeans, sweet heels,  cute shirt and sweater day. I stepped outside and said, “World: I’m ready for you! Bring it on!”  My first stop was to Shipley Do-Nuts. God heard my prayers and built one a hop, skip and a jump from my home. The owner, Naveed, is friendly and  happy to be in McKinney. I told him that I needed 8 dozen glazed hot donuts for my McKinney ISD family at Central Office.  He requested that the cook fry fresh donuts. He was very generous in donating 4 dozen. Off to MISD Central Office with donuts in tow. I placed my soda cup in my cup holder not realizing a button with a sharp pin was in the cup holder. I picked up my drink and all of a sudden soda is spilling on my lap. Not good. I pulled over and grabbed a towel from the back seat and cleaned up the mess.  I looked down at my jeans and secretly hoped no one notices my wet spots. Trust me… I will not go into detail but it didn’t look nice.  I just pulled my shirt down and said to myself, “Sunshine isn’t going to let wet pants keep her down.”  I arrived with 8 dozen donuts at Central Office and visited with some of my colleagues. I believe everyone liked the donuts and Naveed may be having a new set of customers tomorrow morning. I certainly felt  like I walked into sunshine. There are really great people at MISD. My heart was full.

Off to my next stop – downtown McKinney. It’s a favorite place to hang out and walk around. There’s so much history and uniqueness. If you haven’t taken in downtown McKinney, please do so. Tell them Stella sent you. You won’t be disappointed.  Well, as I was leaving Central Office there was an elderly woman who needed assistance. She asked if I was a teacher. I told her that I was an educator but recently retired. She explained that she had been walking to find a medical building for some lab work but was lost. She handed me her appointment card and I told her that if she was okay with it that I would drive her to her destination. She jumped in my SUV. Alice told me she worked with Midlothian ISD at Central Office and knew our former superintendent, J.D. Kennedy.  She spoke highly of Mr. Kennedy and was sad to see him leave. She also indicated that she had just moved to McKinney and loved it. I told her that when you move to McKinney you fall in love with the community and the people. I dropped her off at her destination and handed her one of my new business cards. I told her to call me if she needed anything. She was very thankful and wished me blessings.  I liked Alice. She was real and she was SUNSHINE.

Off to Snugs on the Square. I arrived early enough to snag a couch seat near the electrical outlet. I thought that I would have a bite to eat and work on my AMAZING ideas. Aren’t everyone’s ideas AMAZING?  A lady came by and asked me if the electrical cord was long. I checked it and told her it was not a long cord.  She indicated that she needed to do some work so I asked her to join me on the couch so we could share the outlet.  She was a bit surprised but took me up on my offer.  God works in mysterious ways. This lady and I started chatting about different things: McKinney, family, divorces, children, grandchildren, work, lack of job opportunities impacting formerly incarcerated young men and women when they are released from prison, addictions, etc. Our lives were parallel in many ways. We married young, we divorced, we remarried, we had grandchildren, we were both somewhat ADD (squirrel, squirrel as a friend sometimes tells me), we both worked primarily from home, we loved downtown McKinney, we are  both middle children, we both lived in South Texas and we both rode the Greased Lightening at AstroWorld when we were younger. You have to be over 50 to remember  Astro World’s debut of the Greased Lightening. Great memories.   We could have been sisters! I tried to let Cindy work and she allowed me to work as well. It’s a wonder we got anything done with all that we discussed.  I will tell you that after three hours of sitting together, I felt like I was saying bye to an old friend. We exchanged business cards so I hope to see her again.

What’s the point in these interactions throughout the day Stella? It’s SUNSHINE dear friend. We are all sunshine and it’s important to BE the sunshine in someone’s life. You never know how much it will mean to others… a child, a stranger or a friend.

This Sunshine heard it often from her grandma “MoMo”…… You are my sunshine, my only sunshine. You make me happy when skies are grey. You’ll never know, dear, how much I love you. Please don’t my sunshine away.

Practice Makes Purpose!