Bobby’s Heavenly 33rd Birthday – “Looking Back”

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Birthday in Heaven

Today, April 14, 2017, is Bobby’s Heavenly 33rd Birthday. Our only son. I miss him being here on earth. Heaven seems so far away. I can’t visit there. If I’d go, I’d have to stay. God’s not ready for me yet. 

My thoughts….

I – “The Hardest Day”

Bobby lost his life on May 31, 2013, trying to save others. He died a beloved hero.

Bobby loved his job as a firefighter. He knew the risks, and he went for it anyway. He always had a servants heart and he was a very hard worker. He survived 2 tours of duty in Iraq before coming home to become a firefighter. It seems unfair to have survived a war in a foreign land, and to come back home to be taken, in the end, by a deadly hotel fire. 

II – “Siblings”

Bobby was the only boy amongst our 3 girls (plus myself), and he always felt outnumbered. Well, he was! But if any one of his sisters ever really needed something, he was there for them. They might have knock down drag out fights, but when it counted most, he was there for them. 

Lauren was 10 years younger than Bobby. He thought she was SOOOO cute. He loved it when she said and did silly things. He got such a kick out of her. I would tell him not to laugh if she said a bad word, or got certain phrases wrong (ie. New York Yankers), but he could not help himself. He was only 10, and at 10 years old, I guess that was funny to him. The more I told him not to encourage her by laughing, the funnier it became to him. I get it. I too have a younger sibling. What goes around, comes around, so don’t make fun of your siblings. 🙂

Bobby had a close relationship with Liz.They were only 18 months apart. She would draw the line with him, and he knew not to cross it. He tried it – once. He never tried that again. When she “set a boundary”, she meant it, and he knew it. Their bedrooms shared a wall. At night, I would hear them knocking on the wall from one bedroom to the other. As it turned out, they were “talking in code”. They had a special code word for goodnight. So sweet. We still use that word today. 

As children, Bobby had sort of a love/hate relationship with Nicole. She was 6 years older than he. She had to babysit him a lot because I was a single mom and I couldn’t be everywhere at once. When he got upset with her, he would yell at her, “You’re not the boss of me!” He gave her a very hard time when she needed to correct him because, well, she wasn’t his mom. But when Nicole needed some money for college, he gave her all he had – $50. No one asked him to do that, he just did. It was his heart, and she was in it.

III – “Math Whiz”

Bobby knew the value of a dollar and he worked very hard at saving. He was the only one of the kids who was able to save his money. When the girls were broke (almost always), they visited the “Bank of Bobby.” He gladly gave them a lone, but only if a proper interest rate was negotiated in advance. 😉 Smart boy.

Bobby was good at math even as a little boy. As I’ve mentioned before, when he was 6 years old, and I was trying to divvy up lunch money in the morning for the 3 of them (amidst all of the chaos), he would quickly take charge of all the coins laid out on the bed, and divide them into thirds quicker than I could blink. He never had trouble with his “math facts”. Never.

IV – “Reconciliation” 

Even though Bobby struggled with different things and with us parents as many teens do, I always knew he loved me. He would slip notes under my bedroom door a lot of times to say “I’m sorry” for misbehaving, and to say that he loved me. I would tell him that I forgive him, and we’d work out what he could do differently next time. Although it was difficult at the time, I treasure those sweet notes now more than ever before. 

IV – “Goodnight Sweetheart

At bedtime, when Bobby was about 14, I would say goodnight to Bobby and send him off to bed. A few minutes later my bedroom door would crack open. There was Bobby with his head poked through the crack, smiling, and singing to me – “Goodnight  sweetheart, goodnight, wherever you arrrre!” He had a very good singing voice. I would say, “Goodnight”. A few minutes later, he was back – “Goodnight, sweetheart, goodnight, wherever you arrrrre!” Me: “Goodnight Bobby.” Just as I was falling off to sleep, he was back – “Goodnight sweetheart goodnight wherever you arrrrrre!” Me: “Goodnight Bobby! Go to bed!” Bobby: “Ok, goodnight. Love you.” Me: “Love you too Bobby.” ❤

V – “Looking Back”

I love looking back and seeing that picture in my mind of Bobby poking his head in my bedroom doorway and singing. I wish those would have been the days of “selfies”. I still remember what Bobby’s voice sounded like at 14. You know, that age where a teen boy’s voice gets crackly and deeper? That was it. It still makes me smile. It’s one of my favorite memories of him.

At the time of Bobby’s serenades, in a very rowdy household (4 teens and a blended family), all I wanted him to do was go to bed so I could get some sleep for another rowdy day. But look now, how special it is, that God left me with some of the best memories of him ever. There are more, but this is all for now.

VI – “Love You Forever”

Now I say to Bobby, “Goodnight, sweetheart, goodnight, wherever you arrrrre!” 🎶 

Happy Birthday in Heaven my sweet boy.  🚒 💙🇺🇸 Sadness over the loss of you is here to stay, but my memories of you will never go away.

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Little Bobby – “The Entrepreneur”

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“Little Bobby the Entrepreneur”

Little Bobby loved to make money. He loved to earn it, he loved to count it, he loved to save it, and THEN he learned to LOAN it! I did not teach him about loaning; and I especially didn’t teach him about loaning with interest. This little whiz kid learned THAT one all by himself.

Back in the day, “Blow Pops” were all the rage.  Kids everywhere loved Blow Pops. Bobby would constantly ask me to buy him some Blow Pops. When I had a little extra money, I would buy him a bag of Blow Pops at the store for about $1.25, and OH he was a happy camper!

blowpops

I don’t know how long this had been going on; but one day, I found out that the little toot was taking his bag of Blow Pops to school and SELLING THEM ON THE PLAYGROUND for 25 cents a piece and making a profit! Then he would save the money. Then out of the money earned, he’d ask me if he could give me enough money to go buy another bag, and then he’d sell those too!  All the while Bobby was stockpiling his earnings.

boy counting money

His sisters (both older than Bobby) on the other hand, didn’t try to earn any extra money, and usually spent what they did have as soon as they got it. Therefore, they usually didn’t usually have any money at all.

Bobby was like their (in house) local savings and loan. They were constantly going to him to borrow money. So after a great deal of explaining (by the girls) as to why they needed the money, and after a great deal of explaining from Bobby (as to why they should have saved their ‘own’ money), he would usually end up giving them a “loan”.

With Bobby, just as with most local savings and loans, he collected interest off of the money loaned. He made sure that the girls had to give him back more than they borrowed. Mind you, one sister was 2 years older, and the other was 6 years older. Unbelievable.

Although Bobby was only in the 3rd grade, he clearly understood 5 things:

1) how to make money

2) how to save money

3) how to loan money

4) how to charge interest on money loaned

5) and collecting a debt.

And believe me, if the girls didn’t pay up on time, he made their lives miserable, AND threatened to never loan them money again. And then, the next time they wanted to borrow money, he made them work twice as hard to get it!  Bobby had a big heart, but he was not going to allow anyone to take advantage of it. And I didn’t blame him.

I wish I could say that I taught him these things, but good for him, he figured it all out on his own.

A little genius.

#finishedhisrace

$finish

Little Bobby – Counting Out Lunch Money!

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“Little Bobby Counts Out Lunch Money”

My Bobby has 3 sisters.  One sister was 2 years older, and the other was 6 years older, and the third sister (who came along later ) was 10 years younger. Bobby was “the Lone Ranger” in a house full of girls. Sometimes trying to get a word in could be difficult, so he did the only thing he could do – outsmart!

When Bobby was 6 years old his sisters were then 12 and 10.  In the early mornings, in our usual rush before school and work, I would put their lunch money on the kitchen table. I would always remind them to come and get their lunch money before leaving. I didn’t have time to separate it all out into 3 portions. As a single mom, there just never seemed to be enough time in a day for me, and the children had to learn how to do a lot of things on their own.

bobby lunch money

This particular morning, a few minutes after putting the lunch money on the table, I heard the biggest commotion in the kitchen. I was on my way to the kitchen to see what was going on with all of the ruckus. I guess little Bobby had been growing more and more frustrated; and tired of the hassle that he was witnessing – yet again – while the girls tried to divvy up lunch money with no success (a sight he witnessed often).

About the time I walked in, I heard little Bobby shout “Girls! Girls! HERE!”

With 3 swipes of his little hand, he perfectly divided the lunch money into 3 equal portions. The girls said, “Wow! How’d you do that???”

Little Bobby just stood there with the proudest little grin on his face. No answer – just a cute little grin. 🙂

#priceless.