Day 2 of the Big Journey

This is exciting but difficult. Change is hard whatever it may be, and for me that change is my love for food and making it quick and easy. I know it’s only the second day and it will take time to make my changes a habit. I’m not depriving myself either. I believe in the weight watcher’s approach to a new me. 

If you deprive yourself, you just focus more on what you can not have and that stinks, but having a little bit in moderation at certain times always helps me. Tonight, I was craving Mongolian beef. I had a small portion of beef and smaller portion of rice, but it was enough to satisfy my longing. I had budgeted calories in my day for this dinner, too, so that I had enough in my bank, so to speak, to enjoy my dinner and not have to worry about ruining my diet on the second day.

It’s so difficult to want to trim down my calories each day while wanting to boost calories for my kids who are still growing and in need of them. While they enjoy earing healthy, they also enjoy comfort foods, too. I guess I’ll have to learn how to make those a bit healthier and more calorie friendly since hubs is joining me this time around. It won’t hurt the kids either to have those comfort foods in a healthier version. Granted, most of our homemade food is already fairly healthy, but could use some tweaking. Another experiment for hubs and I. 

Our greatest challenge is always what t of eat first dinner. I see that we will finally be planning out our menus like I’ve been wanting to do for quite some time now, but the challenge will be adding the healthy aspect to our recipes. Any ideas? We love our crock pot and I see some ideas meandering around in my brain with ingredients and the like to attempt. I’ll be sure to share my creations if they are tasty. 

Thus endeth day 2 of our journey. So far, so good, but I can tell you, I could really go for some ice cream right about now. Too bad I won’t be having any. ūüė£

Peace and love guys!

Deirdre

It’s About Time for Coffee

Good morning all! I’ve enjoyed a relaxing morning so far and am so glad you’ve made it here for coffee. I’ll admit, I started my coffee early this morning, as I seem to be awake very early these days. Hubs thinks I’m crazy to wake up as early as I do but he’s a VERY good sleeper in the early mornings. He doesn’t sleep well at night and needs his sleep. Me? I am out like a light these days. It’s nice for a change.

Coffee gets my motor running in the morning. I don’t need a pot. I just like my 1 or 2 cups unless I have company. Marz, my BFF neighbor, often shares coffee with me once the kids are at school. It’s wonderful. We can share the worries and joys of our world’s as well as solve all of the world’s problems all over a cup of joe. 

Whenever my oldest BFF and I go shopping, we have to have one specialty coffee somewhere. This, again, allows us time to solve all the world’s problems over our special java. Since we’ve known each other nearly 30 years (scary thought) we’ve solved a lot of problems, dried many tears and laughed over many funny stories over coffee. It never gets old.

When I lived up north, I used to share coffee by the potfull. I had a beautiful sister-in-law, Amy. We were well known for spending many hours drinking our cafe with cookies on my old porch or her basement. It was just what we did. We went to a family restaurant to escape the world and drank carafe after carafe. Amy passed away 3 years ago and I miss her still. When I see butterflies, certain flowers and hummingbirds, I think of my dear friend. I miss those hours but treasure the memories deep within my heart. 

Coffee in our American society is a social gathering. It’s a means of friendship and communication. In my Irish family, we drink tea. Many hours were spent with my mom over a cup of tea and cookies or biscuits, as it were. I’m missing my mom and will be thinking about her a great deal over the coming months. 

Thursday. The 15th, would have been mom and dad’s 56th wedding anniversary. It was the first one without her here. We all went to dinner with dad. He said he’s forgotten “that was today”. This week is his birthday and onward we go with birthdays and holidays. 

Family and friends should be cherished. Life is shorter than we think it is for we know not the time or place when this life will end. I’ve learned and relearned, assessed and reassessed things in my life over the last year and the one thing that is clearer than anything is that we truly need to love one another. Treat those people in your life gently and with care. Treasure them and tell them you love them each and every day or as often as you get a chance. Never let the opportunity go by to show them how much you care and appreciate them. I’m not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but I’m doing my best. 

A Better Life

What a beautiful morning to be alive. No, the weather isn’t perfecr, although the temperature is lovely. The sky is somewhat overcast, but I began my day early this morning As I seem to do more often As I get older. 

 As I sit here drinking my cup of coffee, I marvel in the small gifts we’ve been given in this life. So many gifts. Even those with much less than me have something to be grateful for and that makes me smile. Just the thought that the less fortunate can be so grateful for what they have in this life. Yet there are so many with more than I have who are always wanting and expecting more. They are never satisfied with what they have simply because they are searching for happiness in materialistic items instead of seeing the true blessings which surround them daily.

I have been richly blessed. I have a truly loving family, a home to live in which always requires some maintenance or another, good on my table and clothes on my back. I wouldn’t say I couldn’t use a little more of this or that, but we have what we need. Truly, in the darkest times, God always provides for us.

Recently, hubs and I went to a Cardinals game and as we were headed home, a panhandler was approaching cars. One look at her and you could see that something was not right with her. Hubs and I talked about her misfortune. How sad for her because she was someone’s child, possibly sister or mother. Now she was there in the streets begging for money. I prayed for her. She did not approach our car, as the light turned, but my heart ached for her. 

Most of the time in our city, we are panhandlers in the same spot. They get in and out of a van and scam people on the same street corners, but my heart told me this was different. U felt that the best thing I could do for her though, was pray. Other cars had given her something. I pray she got some good and didn’t drink it or buy drugs with the money she got. 

The old saying goes, everyone has something. My thought is that this is more true than one realizes. Over the summer, when in was so sick, there were several times in was afraid I would die because I didn’t feel like I was getting any better. I can’t imagine having something worse, but there are many loving with much worse. So today, I choose to cherish my life and make the most of my days, each day. Life is so short and only God knows when he will call us home. I’m a very different person now than I was last year at this time.

Now, go out and make the most of today. Don’t let a day go by without seeing or talking to those you love. Let them know they have impacted your life. They may not know it. Don’t let another day go by without doing that one thing that you’ve been putting off forever. Take the trip, eat the cake, but if nothing else, tell them you love them and don’t end on a sour note.

Many Blessings

It is so easy to look around and see what is wrong with our life but this week I choose to focus on my blessings. I’m surrounded by blessings. Sometimes the things that seem most unlike a blessing brings the greatest joy to our otherwise mundane life.

Sure, not everything in life is the way I would like it to be, but usually that seems to be God’s uncanny way of answering prayers or getting me to be more tolerant of how things will be. It’s sort of how my relationship is with God. He opens my eyes in His way and I obediently say, “oh, now I get it”! I’m rather thick headed at times and so stubborn.

Ah, but I digress. My blessings. I have a husband that loves me and cares for me. No, our marriage is not a perfect marriage, but we are always working on it. We have come a long way from the kids we were and from the newlyweds we were. 

Marriage is hard work, make no mistake. My mother always told me that. She said “you can never change a person… they must want to change.” I’ve changed so much over the years. I’ve grown up, not completely but in the important ways. It makes marriage better. I am blessed.

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My children are such a blessing to me. Children are God’s way of making your life both much more complicated when your children become teenagers, esoecially, and filling your heart full of a love you could never imagine having. It is a love that empowers you to do great and powerful things. 

Before I had children, I wouldn’t dare think of confronting others over feeling that I had been wronged but when and if someone messes with my child, my mama bear comes out and I will hunt you down and eat you alive after clawing your face. Its an instinct. 

Sound a bit harsh? You don’t have children. Talk to a mother who has a child that has been picked on unbidden. She will go to great lengths to protect and defend that child. I love my children with every fiber of my being. I may not like their views or choices at times, but I LOVE them and I will fight anyone that get a in the way of their happiness.

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I am so blessed by my dearest friends. I have a small circle of the very best friends a girl could ever have. All I had to say is, “I’m feeling so down and need some girl time”, and my best friend and I spent the day together. We didn’t do that much but we were together chatting like we always have for the last 29 years. My other best friend lives right near door and I just have to call her or knock on her door and she is always there for me too. Then there are my  old friends that I can call or text at a moment’s notice and they are simply there. 

Recently, one of my old friends that I hadn’t seen or heard from in many years found me after many years apart. What a glorious gift. Time vanishes and I return to feeling like that teenager again full of life and silliness once more. What a beautiful blessing I could never have imagined having been given. I cherish this gift tremendously.

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The gift of music. My house seems to always have music whether I want it or not. My third child plays piano so awesomely and by ear for the most part because sheet music is for sissies and requires one to read it. He doesn’t want to read it and we don’t have any up to date, cool music. He plays everyday, eberthing from video game music to popular music. Just don’t expect any Mozart! 

I sat at the piano last night and was reading some of my old sheet music because I actually can and do read it. I was classically trained but am so out of practice these days. I wasn’t so bad that I should never sit there again, but music is such a gift.

I love when my child plays and his sisters sing together, when everyone is home. They think I’m corny for mentioning this I’m sure, but it is such a blessing to me. I love when they sing “Hallelujah”. Granted, they’re stuck with me joining with them on that one. I only join in on the ones I know and half the time they don’t know because I’m not even out there with them. 

Having the gift of music is such a blessing. I know that I was given this gift but to see that all of my children were blessed by music as well in their own way has blessed me once again.

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This has been a FTSF post. This week was on blessings! Please visit www.findingninee.com for more posts. 

That Elusive Sleep and Other Short Tales

Oh how I wish I could sleep like normal people. These days it just isn’t happening. Some nights are good, but this isn’t one of them. To top it off, I need the sleep. I’m headed out early in the morning with my brother and my dad to head out of town. 

We are off to a memorial service of a very special woman, my cousin’s wife who lost her battle with cancer recently. She was an exceptionally wonderful and funny person, always so full of life. She fought valiantly to say the least and will be missed by so many. 

As it is, if I were to fall asleep precisely in 3 minutes, I could get up to 4.5 hours of sleep. It’s a good thing I’m not driving, although I am a navigator since we recently were there at the same church for my sweet uncle’s funeral. My brother is driving and was out of town last time. Thank the good Lord above for GPS and Google maps!

I continue to heal these days, but my mind and heart have been rather heavy which is why I haven’t written much. It isn’t anything about my health I’m particular, just that I want so much to be completely back to my old self and I grow so impatient sometimes. There have been a few other issues that burden my heart, but they are mine alone. All I can do is pray for that matter to eventually resolve itself.

We celebrated dear Hubs’ birthday yesterday which was great. The cake that my middle 2 kids made was extraordinary! Bear was the baker and Bug was the sculptor! They even made their own marshmallow fondant! It was delicious too! I have to say, eating a cake so cute and named ‘Beau, the Otter’ is rather hard to do! 

Thursday will mark Hubs and my 10th anniversary. I’m very excited. I can’t say we have anything planned. I’m actually just glad to  not be in a hospital and to be feeling better at this point. Sure, I wish we could do something special, but all I keep thinking is the medical bills will be coming soon. Very soon. I didn’t think we would be where we are at this point in our marriage, in fact, I pictured things quite differently. What I can tell You is this, we have had our own very unique and bumpy journey to get here, but it’s proven that our love is a forever love based on the right values and morals with a foundation of faith. I wouldn’t trade this man in for anything. No one else would or could put up with the highly emotional, sometimes irrational, often overthinking, loud-mouthed, opinionated, but thoroughly lovable me. Thank you Jim from the bottom of my heart, for always supporting me No matter what! I never truly understood love until I married you.

A Ripple in Time

Life is funny. I was 16 thirty summers ago. Such a carefree time of my life. I had my first job working as a waitress that summer.

I had always loved everyone I met. I was also the most trusting and naive 16 year old thinking that people were naturally good. The people that. I worked with sprayed me with a hose and dumped me in a fountain just for the hell of it because they were bigger and stronger than me. I also had one of these co-workers keep bugging me for a date regardless of me telling him no repeatedly. That got ugly and I complained to my manager who just sort of laughed it off. Needless to say, I didn’t stay there long.

I learned a lot though, all things being said. I learned to be stronger and how to deal with people very, very different from myself. I learned to be independent and to sort of manage money, well a little bit. I was really good at the spending part. 

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Twenty years ago I was a brand new mom. I was married and was so excited to show off my beautiful baby girl to the world, all nearly 9 pounds. I felt like I had everything I could ever dream of having. A great husband, adorable baby, a home, and I would be starting a new job as an RN. How lucky could a girl be? 

 The summer of 1996 was magical indeed! Nothing could take away that kind of magic. I just wanted to keep that magic going. All the firsts out baby would and was performing. The hours of motherhood were tough, but I was tougher. My world was completely turned upside down by my little sweet bundle! 

All the hopes and dreams that come along with becoming a mother for the first time fueled me. We try not to live our own unseen dreams through our children, but it’s hard not to sometimes. You see so many possibilities in this new life but they become their own individual over time.

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Ten years ago this summer, I married my best friend. Together, we can conquer so much. I told Hubs once that I needed him to be my knight in shining armour. He, very casually, agreed. He is my fearless knight. He took on marriage full steam ahead and never looked back. Not only did he take on marriage to me, but he took on being a stepdad to 3 kids. Brave soul!

We added to our newly formed family the following year with our little bundle of joy, our little 8 pound boy.  I talk about Hubs all the time, but truly we have learned through our own trials and tribulations that marriage is work, very hard work. It’s the work that brings us closer though. I know without a doubt that I could never be who I am now without the unending support of my number one fan, my husband. 

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This summer has had it’s own trials and tribulations. My health over the last few months has been nothing short of mind boggling for me. I’m now finally on the upswing! If I didn’t have my husband and my family, I would have been more depressed than ever. My good friends checked in on me and visited. My support has been outstanding. This is all because of the ripples left behind of things I’ve done, people I’ve met, places I’ve seen.

We all leave ripples in our lives. Wee touch the lives of everyone we meet. It can be good or bad, even indifferent. You never know how the ripple will evolve. 

I married that boyfriend from 30 years ago, but not until 10 years ago. The little baby that changed my life 20 years ago is all grown up and living her own life away from home. She has flown from my coop. Little ripples of life that change your destiny? Sometimes, perhaps. I just like to think of it as God’s plan for us. 

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This has been a Finish the Sentence Friday post. Our host, Kristi, from findingninee.com came up with this week’s sentence about “ripples”.  Go check out the other great posts!

The Drive of Life

My Hubs is a huge car fan.  He particularly loves old, British cars and very expensive, exotic cars.  He isn’t a muscle car kind of guy, but he certainly can appreciate them.  Over the many years I have known this man, I have learned many things about cars and have come to appreciate them myself, not to the extent that he does, of course, but I do appreciate them.  He is known around here as the “Tire Guru”, meaning, if you need any advice on which set of tires you should get for your car, he’s your man.  He can tell which kind of tires are on a car by the marks left in the snow, for heaven’s sake.  He has also been known to leave notes on cars for those poor souls who have low tire pressure, or those who have had the misfortune of having their tires put on backwards.  Yes, for those of you who were not aware, certain types of tires can be put on backwards making their purpose in life, well, impossible.  They can’t whisk away the water for instance if they are on incorrectly.  I have learned this from Hubs.  I am “in the know”!

I promise, though, I won’t write about my very minimal car knowledge, but let’s just say, I have enough to get by.  Actually, the normal routine of cars around here goes something like this.  I ask a question which seems like a simple car question.  What I get instead of a simple answer is a complete dissertation of the mechanical workings of whatever part of the damn car I asked about.  Hubs, in return for his extraordinary effort, gets my “deer in caught in the headlights” look.  He has completely lost me by the second or third sentence most times.  I just wanted the simple answer, but God bless him for trying.  Our son could identify all Ford Mustangs, regardless of year, by the time he was two or three.  He could identify most brands shortly after that, making Daddy one proud papa. Again, I digress.

This post is about what drives us in our lives. For some people it seems to be about success.  For others, it’s about religion, still others, family.  What makes people tick?  What drives us in our lives?  I have met so many people and yet, each person I meet is uniquely different.  I guess because of that, I can only tell you my thoughts and tell you what drives me.  Some days I have to admit, I don’t seem to have any drive at all, but in the end, here I am, so something drives me.

I am and I’ve always been a people pleaser.  I love to make others happy.  My mother always taught me that giving was much better than receiving because you get so much more back.  She also saw in me that I was a giver.  I have to admit that I like to receive, too.  Who doesn’t?  But in my work, I find that giving my time to others is what brings me the most happiness in life.  Selfishness is something that makes me crazy.  I abhor it, yet I find myself being selfish at times.  They always say that the traits you dislike in others are usually the ones you need to work on.  I guess they’re right on that one.  I’m selfish when it comes to time and attention from my Hubs.  He really is the best.  While I have been so ill these last few months, he has been my rock.  I’ve realized that as long as he is there, I’m happy and satisfied.  I won’t say we always get along.  We are human, but we understand each other so well, that just by communicating, all is well in the world.

My faith is also very important to me.  Let me tell you, it’s been tested quite a lot over the years, but no matter what, I always come back, and never once have I questioned God’s existence.  I know that God is a loving and forgiving God.  I know that I am a sinner and I pray every single day for forgiveness for my sins.  I sure hope he hears those prayers.  I have not been a perfect Catholic, but I am a repentant soul just trying to do the best I can and trying to do a little better each day.  I’ll never be perfect.  I don’t get to church everyday or anywhere near it.  In the last month and a half, due to my illness, I haven’t been at all.  I long to get back to the choir.  I miss it.  The point is, regardless of how many times I go to church, I still try my best to live my faith and to teach it to my children.  I often times feel like I have failed doing a good job in that department.  I haven’t lived up to the standards I set for myself.  That being said, my faith still drives me to do better and to try harder.

My family drives me to be successful and to be a good role model.  I don’t always succeed but I keep my head up and keep on going.  Hubs and I have done our best to provide for our family, to create a safe home, to create a happy home.  It’s been a very difficult and rocky struggle throughout the years, but we finally have achieved a home environment that is something that we are proud of.  We have always loved our family very much, but for much of our married life, there were struggles.  This life is a hard one and like I always say, I am a work in progress.  We all are.  Hubs and I used to fight over stupid things that didn’t really matter.  I finally realized that it was me that was instigating the madness.  There was no reason for it.  It was me trying to live in a house where everything was perfect.  The reality was, we needed a home that was lived in and not so perfect.  I had to realize that I was the problem.  That’s really hard to do, but once I did it, our lives began to transform.  Now, our house is a home of love and imperfection and I wouldn’t have it any other way.  Now, I’m working on my impatience.  I have the drive to fix it because of the love I have for my family, but the struggle is undeniably difficult at times, especially when I’m tired and not feeling well and dealing with a 9 year old who is also tired and won’t give up the battle. Ugh!

If only I could get in a car, a really nice car, and drive off to be serviced for my own imperfections… Well, nice thought that is, but I will continue to strive to fix me.  Right now, I’m still recovering from that blasted surgery and it’s complications.  I know once I am able to get out and about again, I will get a new outlook too.  I’ve had far too much time in my house this summer, but I’m feeling much better and ready to have some good times.  I’m ready to build up my strength and get back to work again.  So, that’s my story.  What drives you?

There’s a Storm Brewing

Have you ever felt like your mind is a storm brewing? I have. Not for any particular reason either. Sometimes, my mind just feels like a stupendous storm cloud building up energy, ready to release a downpour of torrential emotions instead of rain, for no reason other than not feeling myself, I suppose. Perhaps I’m just having one it “those” days. Usually I’m not feeling well or getting sick and simply don’t know it yet. Regardless, those storms of emotions play havoc in my life.

I’m sure I’m not the only one that has emotional storms that brew. If they do come to surface, I inevitably will erupt thunderously with a fury. It isn’t pretty, but what storm that knocks trees down is really considered attractive? I will immediately end up with a downpour of years for several reasons. First, it’s a release of pent up emotion that has been brewing inside, unable to find the proper outlet. Second, I’m ultimately so sorry for anyone that has been caught in my storm’s path. Unfortunately, it’s usually my ever faithful and always trusted husband. I always apologize to him because it is not fair. Luckily for me, however, he is the most forgiving and humble man. He always says it’s his fault even though he hasn’t done anything to deserve my storm. He just happened to be in it’s path. 

I have gotten better over the last year. I’ve learned to understand and recognize that sometimes this will happen and I have to accept my great flaw. I have to see that this is part of my depression and luckily doesn’t happen very often. I’m the work in progress and nothing worth having comes easy. Well, this journey is not easy, but I thank God that I have my husband by my side to get me through and to understand and put up with my storms. Lucky for me that he sees the sunny days that are so worth those storms.

And Of These Roots…

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Our family circa about 1978 or so at Mackinac Island Grand Hotel

Many years ago, in 1955 and 1960, my father and mother came to this country. ¬†They had known each other in the old country. ¬†In fact, they had known each other since the age of 12. ¬†The old country I speak of is Ireland. ¬†The land known for it’s 40 shades of green, shamrocks, leprechauns, rainbows, and pots of gold. ¬†Well, that’s what Americans think of. When I think of Ireland, I think of family, specifically, my family. ¬†I am fiercely proud of the family I come from, or rather was adopted into. ¬†It is the greatest family I could ever ask for.

My mother came from the midlands of Ireland.  Specifically, she was born in Mullingar, County West Meath, Ireland.  She was the eldest of 5 siblings, of which there were 2 girls and 3 boys.  My mother, who was so full of life, was adventurous, athletic, slim and feisty.  She had the hardest time sitting still.  In fact, resting never seemed to be part of her vocabulary.

Mom grew up a tomboy, but with 3 younger brothers to keep in line, it’s really no wonder. ¬†With her athletic abilities and small stature, she had to be quick, and she was. ¬†Did I mention she was also the tiniest of the 5 siblings in her house? ¬†Her dad was 6’4″ and her mother was 5’10”, but mom topped out at a mere 5’5.5″ and in her 86 years on this earth, she maintained her height. ¬†Good bones. ¬†No osteoporosis for her! ¬†Man do I wish I shared her genes. ¬†We lost my mom to a hemorrhagic stroke 6 months ago. ¬†There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think about her and miss her so much. ¬†I long to hear her laugh and talk to her just one last time.

Dad grew up in the west of Ireland. ¬†Mom’s family moved to the west when she was 12. ¬†It was through business of their father’s that my parents met each other. ¬†Dad hadn’t noticed mom so much, but mom had already put her sights on him at a young age. ¬†Dad was one of 8 siblings and dad was towards the younger of the lot. ¬†He’s such a brilliant man and it all started when he was a kid.

Dad was the kid with his nose always in the books, as they say. ¬†Always studying, studying, studying. ¬†Mom thought “this one is going somewhere”. She also found him extremely cute with his jet black hair and hazel eyes. ¬†He was the one wearing glasses in all the photos of long ago. I’ve seen the photos. ¬†Such a cutie patootie.

Mom would go out to the Walsh farm for her holidays and was very close to dad’s sisters. It didn’t mean she wasn’t noticing the cutie though. ¬†I may be adopted, but let me tell you, the apple didn’t fall far from that particular tree. ¬†My husband and I have known each other since I was 10 and he was 12. ¬†He had jet black hair and still, obviously, has his beautiful hazel eyes. ¬†Kind of strange, isn’t it!

So, eventually, when they were of dating age, mom and dad were “courting”. ¬†The thing is, education came first for both of them. ¬†Mom’s family wasn’t a wealthy family so she went off to England and studied nursing. ¬†She eventually studied Midwifery and delivered many babies. ¬†I loved listening to those stories so much. ¬†Another one of the things I miss so much about mom being gone. Dad, went off in a different direction. ¬†He stayed in the west of Ireland and went to university to study medicine at University College Galway.

Okay, my husband, Canadian born, studied medicine at University College Dublin. ¬†Yes, another similarity. ¬†Also, my husband and my dad are not tall men. ¬†They are both Irish, even though my Hubs was born in Newfoundland, so I married a good looking Irish guy. ¬†Well, I think he’s gorgeous and that’s all that matters at the end of the day. ¬†I promise, the 2 really aren’t that similar, but those are things I just happened to notice. ¬†I have similar taste to my mom. ¬†That was all I was implying. ¬†Seriously!

Mom and dad were married much later than one would think. ¬†Even though they knew each other for many years, dad made absolutely certain he could afford to marry her and take care of her well before he asked her the magic question. ¬†They were married at the tender age of nearly 30. ¬†Yes, can you imagine? She was beginning to thing he’d forgotten about her altogether. ¬†They did have their happily-ever-after for 55 amazingly wonderful years.

Can you imagine knowing someone for over 70 years and then losing them? ¬†That’s what my dad had to go through last November. ¬†He did it with grace and peace like he ¬†does everything in life. ¬†He is the strongest, smartest and most faithful man I know besides my husband. ¬†He taught me so many things in my life. ¬†It’s because of my parents that I am who I am today. ¬†I may not share the same genetic material as them, but as far as I’m concerned, I might as well. ¬†I think living with the best parents in the world, although also the toughest, created me. ¬†It formed me into a loving, generous, hardworking and faithful woman. ¬†I am just a branch, but a strong branch, thanks to my roots.

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Hubs and me aged 19 and 17.  Oh, those were the days!

This has been a Finish the Sentence Friday post hosted by the lovely genius otherwise known as Kristi from www.findingninee.com.  We link up and share our work each week to finish one sentence.  Go check out the rest of the blogs and find out about our roots this week!

simple ftsf

 

 

 

 

 

Saga: The Family of Us

 

We all have a saga when you come to think about it. ¬†The very word saga is an epic tale about something. ¬†A twisted course of events detailing so many things in the lives of it’s inhabitants.

Saga | Definition of Saga by Merriam-Webster

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/saga

Merriam‚ÄĎWebster

a long and complicated story with many details. : a long and complicated series of events.

Given this definition, isn’t that what our families are all about? ¬†Take my family for example. ¬†First there are the characters. ¬†There are my Hubs and I, AKA, the parents. ¬†The kids, we will refer to them as Boo, Bear, Bug and Boy. ¬†This is my immediate family. ¬†We each have our own lives outside of our home as well as the life we share when we are gathered together. ¬†Our characters each have personalizations that make them each unique to who they are, but to complicate that, when they are with different people, they have different personality quirks or traits that they may not have with others.
When you filter in more characters, such as in extended family, which there are grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, dad for Boo, Bear and Bug, as well as Stepmom, and Step family for them, the saga instantly becomes that much more confusing and entertaining as well as epically more interesting. ¬†You see, every family has a story. ¬†Each family’s story is unique. ¬†I will make my family’s story as simple as I can and try to simply give you the bare facts so that you don’t get too overwhelmed with the details. ¬†My Hubs always says he needs a flowchart for my extended family, so I’m afraid with 37 first cousins, not including their spouses, I will have to leave them out. ¬†Just hope they all know how much each of them knows how much they mean to me and how much I love them.
Many years ago, on my mother’s side, her parents met, fell in love and had her first. ¬†She was followed by 3 boys and another little girl. ¬†Mom met dad when her family moved from the midlands of Ireland to the west of Ireland at age 12. Both mom and dad’s fathers, had some business together so that’s how my parents met. ¬†Mom started going out to to dad’s for holidays when she was young. ¬†She grew fond of dad and his family over that time. ¬†Dad was one of 8 children. ¬†He was always a student and so was she. ¬†At 18, they each went off to school. Mom went to England to study nursing and dad went to University to study medicine. ¬†They kept in touch and mom found him a job for his summer leave from school in England. ¬†With me so far? ¬†I told you this is the simplified version.
Mom and dad finally married at the tender age of 29 and mom got to move where dad already was. The United States.  He had become a Yank.  6 weeks after their marriage, she was able to join him in Illinois where they could finally start a life together and a week later, she turned 30.  Imagine leaving everything you had ever known to go to a whole new world.  Her initial reaction was amazement at how large everything was.  Three years later, my brother was born.  Six years after my brother, they adopted me.
My brother and I had a wonderful childhood.  My brother was the perfect son with perfect grades.  Then there was me.   I was the artsy one.  The musical one.  The one not interested in the books.  I luckily grew out of that in time.  My brother was the tennis player, the book worm, the amazing student.  He was understood by them.  I was the sunshine in the house, but I was also the one that could try the patience of a saint.
I had a long time boyfriend from the time I was 12. ¬†That would be Hubs. ¬†Yes, I thought the sun rose and set with him. ¬†Lucky for both of us, I still do. ¬†Unlucky for him, I broke up with him after many years of dating him. ¬†I was young and thought he didn’t love me. ¬†How dumb was I! ¬†I also had never dated anyone else. ¬†I wanted to see my other options, I suppose. ¬†I was a young and naive 19 year old. ¬†Regardless, I broke his heart and dated several others until I found the one that made my heart soar. My first husband. ¬†The father of my girls.
Seasons change and so do we. ¬†First Husband and I grew in completely different directions, but we still get along. ¬†We do have 3 amazingly talented and beautiful girls together. ¬†We dated for 19 months, engaged 9 months and married for 13 years. ¬†Even the divorce was amicable except for the feeling of having my heart ripped and shredded from my body. ¬†I think that’s just what divorce does though. ¬†I vowed that would never happen again.
I married my better half, my soulmate July, 2006. ¬†Yep, that’s Hubs. ¬†The same one I wrote in my diary about at age 12. ¬†The same one I broke up with at 19. ¬†He was at my first wedding, but more importantly, he was in his proper place at wedding number 2. ¬†He was my gorgeous groom. ¬†He and I were always meant to be together. ¬†We do complete each other. ¬†We compliment each other without a doubt. ¬†Today, for example, he calmed me like no one else can during my panic attack. ¬†He knows if he sees tears welling in my eyes, I need him. ¬†He puts me first and cares for me always. ¬†I often tell him I don’t deserve him.
We create new chapters in our saga each day. ¬†Writing them down is an amazing tool to share with your family and close friends. ¬†You have the completely and utterly abridged version here, but I am working on a version for my family that has many more details. ¬†They’ve asked and I’m working on it. ¬†I challenge each of you to think about and possibly write down some of your own family saga. ¬†Is it an epic tale of love and surprise? Perhaps your family had more pain and suffering, or a life with privilege, or mental illness, or physical disabilities ¬†to overcome. ¬†Whatever your story is, it is a saga and no one else has the same saga. ¬†Keep it to share with future generations. ¬†We get one chance to make this life, and one chance to write it out. Do it today.