Monday, June 13, 2016

Hazelbaker the Cupcake Maker

What I thought was going to be a laidback Monday evening turned into an evening full of excitement! My friend Laura, who lives in Cape, texted my sister and I that Cardinals outfielder Jeremy Hazelbaker was going to be signing at Rally House in Brentwood. Ever since AR saw Hazelbaker at spring training, she has called him Hazelbaker the Cupcake Maker and when he's up to bat at Busch Stadium, she always yells at him to ask, "Do you bake cupcakes?"

This past weekend, my sister saw him in Pittsburgh and told him about AR and her cupcake question so when Laura text us about his signing, my sis said she'd grab the cupcakes and meet us there. As soon as AR set them down in front of him, he immediately recalled the conversation with my sis. AR kind of froze up and he had to kind of coax the cupcake maker part out of her. Then when we snapped this pic, he asked someone to take a picture on his phone, too!

He signed a ball and a picture for her then we put the stuff in the car and came back in to look around. As we were looking at visors, he came up and admitted that he had a sweet tooth. Our convo:

Hazelbaker: Yeah, I've got a sweet tooth.

Me: Only on your cheat days though, right?

Hazelbaker: Every day's a cheat day.

Me: Yeah, me, too.

Somehow it came up in conversation what part of town he lived in and I told him about a cupcake place close to him.

Me to AR: Remember that place? We met Mary Poppins there a few summers ago. *I turn to Hazelbaker* Mary Poppins, Hazelbaker... you know, I'm sure they'd love to have you sign there, too!

He laughed and then some more people came in to get autographs so we bought a visor and he went back to signing. The store gave us another photo of him so AR went up to have it signed. Their convo:

AR: Can you sign this for my sister, Haley?

Hazelbaker: Sure, I can sign it for your sister. Where should I sign? *they have a discussion deciding where to sign* Think I should put her name on there?

AR: Yeah, it's Haley.

Hazelbaker: How do you spell that? H-A-L-E-Y?

I nod to AR who looks at Hazelbaker: Pft! That was easy!

Hazelbaker, laughing: Yeah, it was. I shouldn't have even asked.

AR: Thanks for keeping me up past my bedtime.

Hazelbaker: Oh, are you supposed to be in bed?

AR nods

Hazelbaker: Aw... I like it!

Then we thanked him and told him good luck with the season. I posted this pic on IG:
AR finally got to meet Hazelbaker the Cupcake Maker as she calls him. She even took him some @jillyscupcake for his sweet tooth! Thanks for being awesome @j_hazelbaker to your biggest little fan! #stlcards #cardsfangram #lovemyAR #summer #hazelbakerthecup

And as if the evening was already awesome enough... HE LIKED OUR PHOTO!!!

Thank you, Hazelbaker the Cupcake Maker, for your time and making this little girl's night. You have a new fan for life now!!! And then he posted this on his Instagram page and AR is even more in love with #hazelbakerthecupcakemaker


Saturday, June 11, 2016

Paying It Forward

Let me start off by saying, I am NOT a positive person. Matt always said that and it's true. However, I prefer to think of myself as a realist or a positive pessimist. I don't know, I've always had the mindset that if you expect the worse then you'll be pleasantly surprised when anything better happens. Ever since last August when my life got 'turned around, flipped upside down,' things were really put into perspective for me. It was like every random Facebook post was speaking to me. You know, the ones that say something like "smile because it might make someone's day" or "you never know what the person next to you is going through." I started thinking about that because that was my life. Inside, I was falling apart. I was walking around very precariously with this fragile outer shell but no one knew. One wrong raise of the eyebrow by the cashier at the grocery store and I'd find myself in my car crying my eyes out. You can ask my ex-boss and co-worker all of the crazy things that ran through my mind and how ridiculous they all were. Side note: Thank you, Amy and Holly, for listening to my never ending rambling and worries.

Friendships from years ago to people I'd only just met came out of the woodwork to see me through this hardship. On a whim, I went to an Advocare meeting at a preschool mom's house in July and BAM! Friendships that I NEEDED were dropped into my life. Seriously, these women were put into my life at that precise moment on purpose. My girls from high school were checking in on me, sending short texts saying they were praying for us. I'd read that text and sit there crying for the next few minutes. At an Easter event, one of my co-workers checked AR in for me, her daughter was sure that AR had a golden egg, and if I were a hugger, I would've been hugging them, instead I cried for their generosity and help. And let's not forget the guy at the recycle center who helped me with the giant TV I was recycling and had already dropped on my leg getting it into the car. There's been countless other acts that friends, families, and strangers have done for us and while I can't list all of them out, THANK YOU to everyone.

These small acts of kindness made a HUGE impact on me and somehow, some way, I wanted to pay it forward. Here are a few things that AR and I have done over the months to pay it forward. This is in NO WAY to brag what we've done but to give ideas of how you can pay it forward and please, leave any ideas because I love new, fun, creative ideas.

*We bought items for the Adopt-A-Family we had at work.
*We made cards thanking people for decorating their house for Christmas, picked out our favorite houses in the neighborhood, and left the note with a lottery ticket on their door.
*I had a coupon for a buy one, get one free burrito so I took the "free" burrito to the nice man at the recycle center who helped me with the TV.
*We adopted soldiers! And therefore have raided every Taco Bell we see for sauce packets!
*Any time I see a mom with a kid having a meltdown, if I'm close enough, I tell the mom, "Hang in there, Momma. We've all been there."