Coral Reef and a Christmas List

"Melissa, what the HELL is that thing around your neck?????" (says my Manfriend's mentor) when we attended a cookout at his lake house this past weekend. Now... you may need to go back and reread that with the HEAVIEST Southern accent you can muster to get the full effect. Oh, and he doesn't "talk" so much as yell. He is always the loudest, funniest, and smartest person in the room. He commands attention. So... now everyone in a 5 mile radius stops and stares at my neck. It was like the proverbial record stopped. Crickets. I paused a moment, and then smiled and said..."It's coral reef...  and in the event that the ecosystem of the lake suddenly gets off balance, I am prepared to  immediately throw it in the water. Coral reef supports like 25% of  known marine species, I'll have you know". BAM. It was one of those moments in life where you could have been really embarrassed and silenced... as the heat creeps up your face into a full blown blush, and then 4 hours later you craft a response (in your head) that has the perfect balance of humor and wit. But no, for once... nailed it. He started laughing hysterically, threw his arm around me and then said to the crowd, "... and she's smart too". I narrowly avoided an epic fail moment. Oh... and don't ask how I know that random fact about coral reef. It was a weird memory... almost like a song lyric from your youth. Your not really sure that you really remember it until after it already leaves your mouth.

I guess when you wear an obnoxiously loud piece of jewelery to a down-home Southern cookout you need to be prepared to get some heat for it. Oh, and I changed into flip-flops before the cookout... can you even IMAGINE the flack I would get for these shoes? Holy shit.

What I have not mentioned already, is that this cookout was actually a field day for a local children's home (and orphanage to put it plainly). We grilled out with a ton of kids while they ate, played, fished, went out on the boat to tube, etc. It was amazing. My manfriend's mentor (also a dentist) got into a relationship with the children's home about 2 years ago.

It was the end of the year. He walked into the little dentist room thingy where a 9 year old girl was sitting after her hygiene check. He introduced himself to the little girl in the chair, and asked her the same question he had asked to every kid for the last few weeks. "So... what do you want Santa to bring you for Christmas?" "A family," she says. He said, "I'm sorry, what was that, Honey"? She says... "a family". "I want a family for Christmas; I don't have one". Did your stomach just drop? Mine did. I teared up when he told me that story and I'm doing it now, again, and I write this. (What the hell is wrong with me lately?) Anyway... I think we go through life hoping to make a significant, lasting, positive influence somewhere to someone and I just thought it was AWESOME that this guy didn't let that moment pass. He buys Christmas presents for ALL of the kids off of lists that they make for him, hosts days on the lake, and takes care of all of the dentistry for the orphanage. Pretty effin' awesome, right? I was really inspired, so I thought I'd share.


  1. What a great guy that dentist seems to be, big sense of humour with a big heart, love it. Thanks for sharing this, I could actually feel that situation with the necklace, my bf brother is like that :-D.
    Oh man that just put tears on my eyes too, we can be so fortune to have family that supports and love us.

    I love your shoes, they are freakin amazing. A good thing you took them off before also it would have been kinda interesting what he would have to say? :-D


    Ps: Where did you get those killer heels?

  2. Ani! Hi!!!

    I got these shoes at Shoedazzle.com. I'd say about 4-5 months ago, maybe? I haven't bought much from that website in a really long time, but once in a while they have really great, creative shoes for a really reasonable price. I refuse to spend a lot of money on stuff. I just can't bring myself to do it. I'm a cheapskate!