Saturday, May 7, 2016

Week13 of 2016...Accidents and the Lessons Learned  I can't believe my sister would pick such a topic and then assign me such a task. What does she want....a volume?  or a Blog Post?  There are people that have accidents and then there are folks that are an accident waiting to happen most of the time.  I'm not that bad, but I've had my share and yes, there are lessons to be learned.  Isn't that how we learn?  Of course it is!  The only problem we have is when we repeat the accidents and don't learn on the first...or second...or third time.

Let's make a list...

A.  Food
B.  People
C.  Automobiles
D.  Others

Food was always a topic of discussion in the Smith Family...and the Semps are no different. we want to talk about the triple batch of cherry finger jello that Brad pulled out of the refrigerator to see if it was done.  NOPE, it wasn't...and my carpeted kitchen floor was never the same.
LESSON:  ALWAYS position a pan of liquid jello on a high shelf when you have little ones!

Have you ever spilled anything in your car?  Like a crockpot of Nacho Cheese or Goulash Soup? Wouldn't one think that after having a horrible mess like spilled cheese, I'd always put a crock pot in a box or suitable, stable spot?  NOPE...I do it several times before I figure it out.  The only way to clean cheese out of a van is to open both sliding doors on the van and take it to the carwash that has a hand nozzle to get in all the cracks and crevices.  And you know, we finally had to inject odor neutralizer with a syringe into the carpet.  Every time the van was warmed by the sun, it smelled like sour milk. LESSON:  ALWAYS put soupy or liquid foods in a box, please.

Ever seen a bottle of red pop dropped by a youngster explode and spin in circles with the spray coating the grocery store aisle with red, sticky pop?  LESSON:  Hopefully, the adult will put the pop in the cart from now on.

Raising three boys was a circus from time to time...well, most of the time.  Moms of all boys should understand going into the experience that there will be rough housing, wrestling, breakage and tears...usually in that order. It didn't matter who was chasing, but at one time or another, the chasee got hurt.  We had pressure bandages on huge goose eggs to the head, black eyes, broken nose, collarbones (yes, more than once), many bags of ice in washcloths, skinned knees, legs and arms. Did one incident teach me how to prevent the next....hmmm...probably not.  LESSON:  Some accidents just happen when you have kids no matter how you try and prevent them.

Automobiles and other machinery help us in daily life...accidents happen and the damage can be repaired or a cost.  My parents always said "better a thing to fix/replace, rather than a person!"  However, some of life's biggest and earliest lessons are with automobiles that do not belong to us...but are on loan from our parents.  Totaling our family station wagon at 17 was devastating to me, and my family's mode of transportation for a few weeks.  I swore I would never drive again, but my wise father said that my best therapy was to drive the car back home from the repair shop. One moment of not paying attention, resulted in rear end damage to the car ahead of me, pushing that car into the back of a brand new car being driven home from the sales lot....all on M53 with the Eastern Michigan Fair on my left and McDonalds on the right...witnesses all over the place gaping at the chain collision AND my folks green Ford station wagon was totaled because the frame was bent.  A ride home in a police car was the culmination of that days lesson.  Costly, but a very effective LESSON for life!  However...not the only accident I have had!

If you could ask my father, Harold, he'd have a couple of additional stories along with a huge grin and not then. One of the best ones involved the Harbor Beach Post Office which in years past had two postal boxes out for local mail and one for out of town mail. On a rainy day and not wanting to get out of Dad's famous big blue van, I pulled in just so, getting the oversized side mirror of the van, caught right between the two boxes. I could not get the van out, and so I went inside and explained to the Postmaster that I was stuck and would just pull away, likely pulling the mirror off, but in that attempt was not trying to damage " US Postal property."  That's exactly what happened.  Dad was not so understanding and made me drive him back to the Post Office and show him exactly how I could have accomplished such a thing.  LESSON:  While the design and engineering is horrible for the drive up box in Harbor Beach, (its on the wrong side of the road for the driver of a vehicle to use it) one should just get out of the vehicle and put the mail in the box in any kind of weather.

Did you ever roller blade?  If so, you know that just a pebble or a twig can cause you problems if you aren't paying attention while on roller blades.  I was very fortunate in all my years of roller skating and rollerblading to enjoy the exercise with relatively few accidents.  I wore protective gear, controlled my speed and was careful at corners and crosswalks.  However, one day I skated through fresh asphalt...or tried to.  It does not work and no amount of compensation can correct it.  I was down for the count.  LESSON:   Make sure the city hasn't repaired a water main break where you are messes up your skates, bruises your ego and maybe your derriere.

And one more, not of my doing...some of you reading our blog posts know of my sister's love of nature, animals and such.  Susie had quietly collected a full coffee can of tree toads..(tiny little toads about as big as your little fingernail) one Sunday, while we were visiting Grandma and Grandpa Smith.  Our Sundays usually included a car ride and maybe stopping to visit other relatives.  With a two door sedan packed with 4 girls, Mom, Dad, Grandma and Grandpa, the entire back seat was packed with the "women."  Susie's toad collection in the covered coffee can was on the floor of the car, but only a mile into the ride, Grandma Smith, promptly took the top off to see what was in the can.  Before Susie could even respond, the back seat was filled with dozens..maybe hundreds of little toads hopping everywhere. With squeals, giggling and maybe a few tears from Susie,  Dad stopped the car and he and his Dad had a great laugh from the front seat, while Susie tried to gather as many as she could and put them back in the can.  LESSON:  In our family, make sure you carefully open a container that Susie has had in her possession..or don't touch it in the first place.

So...our life lessons are many...difficult, easy, sad, happy...but all are a part of the learning process. May you never stop learning and be blessed with an abundance of laughter with your lessons!


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  2. I love the mirror between the mailbox this day I can not figure out how you did it...but that is the beauty of it...Great post!