Tuesday, January 28, 2014


I woke up late yesterday because we had a snow day from school.  I had planned a day of leftover projects that had been hanging over my head.  Nothing hard, just unfinished business. 

I made the mistake of turning on the computer first thing.  I saw this on a friend's Facebook page and it got me thinking....
"If you ain't losing friends, you ain't growing up." Snoop Dog. Everything we do turns someone off to us as friends. Some persons, especially those afraid to pay the price of loving unconditionally, are consistently and constantly seeking reasons and ways to get out of relationships, no mater how simple or complex they are. Hard as it may be to understand, we must know that we are not losing ...true friends, but only those who appear to be! To live the truly happy life we must live beyond the need to be loved, but must live to love with everything we have and are. And to live our greatest potential in this regard, we must teach this to our children, grandchildren, friends, students, and, especially our enemies or possible enemies.
So, as I was taking that post in and mulling it over, I started thinking about the Grammy awards the night before.  I remembered Sara Bareilles and Carole King singing together.  That took me to You Tube and this video.  This got me thinking even more.

Say what you want to say and let the words fall out.  When was the last time I did that?  When was the last time I was brave with words?  Have I ever really been brave when it comes to words?  Maybe it's time I was.  Or maybe it's time to step back and let go. 
Maybe it's time for this.....
Maybe I have a lot to think about.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

There's This Boy I Know Who's Having A Birthday

 A long time ago, I met this boy at the local root beer stand.  I was a sophomore in high school and he was 19 and out of school.  He asked the girl that I was with out on a date.  To this day, he swears it was just to ask her about me.  Whatever the reason, we went out the next weekend and have been together ever since.
Two years later, we got engaged at my mom and dad's 25th anniversary party.  
Here we are at our bridal shower.  Check out my glasses and Dick's wide wale corduroy pants.  Oh my!
On September 8, 1973 we tied the knot.  
We made it to 25 years!
We made it to 30 years!
We had some fun along the way.  Have you ever been to a Jimmy Buffett concert?  Now that is fun!
We even made it to 40 years!
Along the way, we had four amazing and beautiful daughters who found four equally amazing and handsome men.  They blessed us with three awesome and adorable grandchildren.
And two months ago, we had the thrill of welcoming another grandchild, a granddaughter into our lives.
Just last month, this boy and I became empty nesters for the first time in 39 years.  We've come full circle, so to speak.  It's back to just him and I again.  While it has been a little weird, it has been a little exciting too.  The options are endless.  We just have to sort them all out and that is just what we are doing.
This is his first birthday since January 23, 1974 that it has been just him and I in this house.  We've come a long way since then.  Everything has changed and nothing has changed.  Our house has doubled in size.  Our family is seven times larger!  Going from two people to fourteen people is huge.  We give each other space, but we enjoy being together.  I love that over the last few weeks with all the nasty and cold weather we have had in Northwest Indiana, he has offered so many times to take me to work and pick me up.  After all these years, he's still very thoughtful.  He can still surprise me.  Maybe that's not always a good thing, but I love that he does. 

So, today is his birthday.  I want to wish him a very Happy Birthday and a wonderful year to come.  I love you more than I ever thought possible.  You make my life something quite special and I will always be grateful that all those years ago, you picked me over that other girl.  Maybe you really were just asking her about me. 
Happy Birthday!  Love you!!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Old Friends - New Friends - Same Friends - Best Friends

Long, long ago, I spent my first six years of school at a catholic school.  Yes, six years.  Way back then, kindergarten wasn't mandatory, so mom kept me home with her.  I loved that.  I also loved catholic school.  It was a small school experience that I wouldn't have given up for anything.  I made some great friends.  We had a great time and made some wonderful memories.  This is my sixth grade class. 
The problem was, our school only went through sixth grade.   I was now going to be forced to go out into the big world of public school.  They had more kids in one grade than we had in our whole school.  This was going to be scary and it was at first.  But, I survived just as the rest of my sixth grade class did. 
What I didn't realize at the time was that there were lots of kids out there that felt the same way I did.  The public school kids were all coming to the middle school from their own grade schools.  Granted, they would probably know more kids than me, but they were still in a new school too.  This kind of leveled the playing field, so to speak.  Come to find out, it was all good.
I made lots of new friends and my old friends were still there too.  I truly loved my new school and my new friends.  We had great times together.  We all joined Tri Hi Y at the local YMCA.  It was a girls club and we had a wonderful time.  We did service projects,  had meetings, threw dances on Friday nights and had amazing overnights at the Y.  There was actually an above ground pool in the basement.  Really friends, you can't make stuff like that up.  We went to all the sporting events.  We just had a great time.
Before we knew it, it was time to move on to high school.  Same thing all over again.  The school seemed huge to us, but we muddled through.  At least this time, we knew more people than we knew before.  We weren't in Tri Hi Y anymore, but we were still doing lots of things together.  It was in May of my sophomore year that I met my future husband.  Little by little, he became my priority and I was seeing less and less of my friends.  So much so that I hardly ever spent time with them away from school.  This was the beginning of the end of the closeness with a lot of my high school friends.  Knowing what I know now, I never would have let that happen, but I was a young woman head over heals in love and that was what I thought was the right thing to do.
Fast forward about 37 or so years.  It is the age of social media and Facebook is the greatest thing ever.  I can't believe all the people I am reconnecting with.  One day, I get a request to join the new page created for the Class of 73 from my old high school.  I think about it and I join.  This is one of the smartest things I have done in the last five years.  We began to have our now famous "meet ups".  The first one was at the home of one of the girls from the class.  You'll find out later that she is one of the reasons for this post.  Here is a picture from that first meet up.  We had a wonderful time.  The year books came out and we talked and talked.
As time went on, we had more and more of our get togethers.  They became more and more frequent.  Any time a classmate came to town for a visit, we'd get together.  Our spouses began to join in the fun.  I remembered how much I loved these people and how much I had missed them.  The more time went on, the more I found myself becoming closer and closer to two of these very special classmates and they are the real reason for this post.  The classmates that I speak of are Jan and Leslie.  Oh, you should meet them!

The more we got together and the more we talked, the more we realized how very much we had in common after all these years.  We all had long standing marriages.  Jan and I with our high school sweethearts.  We loved our husbands, children, grandchildren and pets.  We shared a love of Lake Michigan and loved to walk down the shoreline hunting for treasures of beach glass and crinoids.  We had a love affair with our cameras.  We like making things with our hands, but Leslie is the winner in that field.  She is so very talented with her sewing, quilting, knitting and crocheting.  She makes us very jealous.  We are there for each other as sounding boards and shoulders to cry on.  We rejoice in each others happiness and our hearts break in each others sadness.  The lists goes on and on.  It is just the best mix of three people ever.  It makes me very happy!
Here we are under the kaleidoscope in Saint Joe, Michigan.  We had so much fun that day.  It was wonderful.  We decided after this picture that we should always take our pictures looking up!
Here they are looking for those treasures along the Lake Michigan shoreline.  We found some great treasures that day at Grand Mere.
Here we are with another one of our classmates, Bobbi, at Jan's lake house.  We spent the night there and it was just like a high school sleepover all over again.  So, so much fun!  The only difference was that we didn't have any trouble with the legal age limit to drink.  We've got more than double that now. 

Leslie and Jan are the best people you will ever meet.  They are always thinking of everyone but themselves.  They are the first to ask what they can do to help.  We keep in touch on Facebook.  We text and email.  We get together when we can, but it is never often enough.  I am proud to call them my friends.

I guess when you think about it, my old friends are my new friends, but they are the same friends, but oh, they are the best of friends. 

You are my sunshine, ladies.  I love you!

Friday, January 10, 2014

Old School Blogging, 2013 Recap

It's time for some Old School Blogging.  Feel free to join in. 
You can link up here.
1. What did you do in 2013 that you’d never done before?
This will probably sound silly, but I entered some of my pictures in the county fair and won a red ribbon.  Second place!
2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I gave up making resolutions years ago.  I think they just set you up to fail.  This year, I've set some goals for myself that are hopefully attainable.  We'll see.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Yes!!  My daughter gave birth to her first child.  She gave her dad and I a beautiful new granddaughter named Haley Jeanette and she is just perfect.
4. Did anyone close to you die?
Unfortunately, yes.  We lost quite a few family members and friends, but my stepdad is the one that truly broke my heart.  My own dad died when I was 22 and mom remarried when I was 26.  My stepdad was my "other" dad for 32 years.  He was one of the best men I ever knew and I miss him so much.  He was 91, but you never would have guessed it, if you didn't already know.
5. What countries did you visit?
Just the good old USA!

6. What would you like to have in 2014 that you lacked in 2013?

7. What dates from 2013 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
May 4....I walked my third half marathon.
August 17.....my husband and I renewed our wedding vows for our 40th anniversary.
September 25....when my stepdad died.
November 2....when our new granddaughter was born.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
I think it was celebrating our 40th wedding anniversary.  In this day of disposable marriage, I think it's a real accomplishment to stay married to the same person for 40 years and still be truly happy.
9. What was your biggest failure?
Finishing up the year by gaining weight.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
I did.  I have tendonitis and a bone spur in my right foot.  It's a slow process, but it's getting better.  I have finally been released to try exercising again.

11. What was the best thing you bought?
I cannot think of one thing that would qualify as being the best thing I bought.

12. Where did most of your money go?
The usual every day stuff like bills and food.

13. What did you get really excited about?
My 40th high school reunion!

14.  What song will always remind you of 2013?
Blurred Lines.  The most overplayed song ever.

15. Compared to this time last year, are you:
– happier or sadder?  Sadder because of all the people we lost this year, but still very happy. 
– thinner or fatter?   Thinner than last year, but fatter than earlier in the year.
– richer or poorer?   Richer, but not monetarily so.

16. What do you wish you’d done more of?

17. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Stuffing my face after my injury.

18. How did you spend Christmas?
Christmas breakfast at our house with our kids and grandkids.  Christmas dinner at my mom's with our family, my mom, my siblings and their families.  It was a near perfect day.

19. What was your favorite TV program?
I watch very little tv, but if I watched something purposefully, it was Grey's Anatomy.

20. What were your favorite books of the year?
Awakenings (about Notre Dame football) and rereading The Shack and Heaven is for Real.

 21. What was your favorite music from this year?
I am a new Pink fan.  She is awesome.

22. What was your favorite film of the year?
I absolutely loved Frozen.

23. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
My actual birthday was pretty low key because it fell in the middle of the week.  The kids celebrated with us on the weekend.  I was 59.  The countdown is on to 60.  Bring it, I'm ready!

24. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
I don't know about immeasurably more satisfying, but I would have liked to travel more.

25. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2013?
I don't know that I have a fashion concept.  I like what I like and it has to be comfy and casual.

26. What kept you sane?
Believe it or not, it was my family.  Sure, they have their moments when they drive me crazy, but in the big picture they ground me.  They keep me sane.  Without them, I'd be a nut.

27. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2013.
This year I truly found out who my real friends are.  Some of the people I thought were my friends really weren't.  I got my feelings hurt, and it was hard, but at least now I know.  

Saturday, January 4, 2014

The Year in Review

I don't know about where you live, but where I live, we are getting snow and I am pretty excited.  This was taken yesterday morning and we are getting more right now.  Actually, it looks like we are going to be getting a lot more.   
Instead of a Christmas letter this year, I did a Christmas blog.  It is just a lot of pictures and tells about some of the things that went on with us in 2013.  If you are interested in seeing it, here's the link....
Keep warm, keep safe and enjoy the snow.
I know I sure will.