ShabbyBlogs - Must be Maddie

Monday, July 15, 2013

jury duty

Last Friday I fulfilled my civic duty and reported for jury duty.  Although I didn't want to miss work because I'm a workaholic, I was curious about the whole judicial process given the general climate of the news lately and because I have never been called in as a juror before.

Essentially my name was called as an alternate juror and then a bunch of questions were asked which weeded people out.  One of the questions to eliminate people was, 'do you feel comfortable passing judgement and assigning a punishment to another person?'  My immediate thought was, No, no I don't!!  But my logical side told me to stick in there because this is my patriotic obligation to my country.

Let me tell you, it's daunting and concerning to have someone's fate in your hands.  That is a LOT of responsibility.   A person's life and the next chapter in their life was in the hands of 12 people.  We were going to determine if someone could go home to their family or if they were going to face consequences.  When you stop to think about it, there is a lot of weight to that thought.

In any case I made it through the questioning round and became one of the jurors for the day's trial.

I think the toughest part of the day for me was sitting near the defendant.  I know in life we aren't supposed to judge a book by its cover but I couldn't help feeling sympathy towards this man.  He was middle aged, dressed nicely, and had kind, albeit worried, eyes.  For some reason my heart went out to him.

I was pretty excited when it was time for lunch.  Since we were near downtown I steered a small group of us to Smoked BBQ co.  I happen to know the guy (and his wife) who owns the cart/company and his food is just awesome.  Delicious everything, at a good price point, and it's quick.  I mean you can't go wrong.

After lunch we heard the rest of the case and soon it was deliberation time.  To be honest I thought my opinion wouldn't be liked, but surprisingly we were split 60%-40% (I was on the 60% side).  We discussed a little and were able to come to a consensus quickly.  All the jurors were pretty happy about that because it was past 6:30pm on a Friday.

Personally I was relieved with our decision.  To be honest had things gone the other direction I may have carried around some guilt for a while.

The big highlight of my day was when the judge read our consensus.  Right as the judge got to that one part, I looked over at the defendant as the last part of the consensus was read and the emotion that washed over him will be forever etched in my mind and my heart.

I don't know about anyone else, but I have no doubt that we made the right decision.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013


Husband and I realized that after a year of living in Charlottesville, we have made some great friends.  I prayed about it for a long time when we first moved.  It was something I worried about  since I work from home and I was unsure how I would meet people.  I knew it would take time and I just had to be patient, and it turns out I was right.

So last week was Husband's birthday and while considering where to have dinner, we realized there were 10 people we could invite.  10 people we consider friends.

We have friends!  And they are so nice!  And I feel like we fit in, like we're birds of a feather, like we're peas in a pod, like we're bacon in the same pan!

Yes I feel like a nerd saying that but making friends when you're older is tough.  Thankfully we ended up in an awesome neighborhood and that was all God's doing.  If we didn't live here I think our lives would be quite different and we would have missed out on knowing all these really awesome people.

I'm thankful and happy.  

It's a blurry picture but that is a-okay, the happiness shines through. 

Some of the sweet ladies I have met 

In the words of Phil Robertson
happy happy happy