Happy Birthday Dear Beckie!

Today is my sister-in-law Beckie’s birthday.  Happy Birthday to you dear Beckie!  Hope you have a great and wonderful day. Hope you can do something fun and enjoy the entire day!

Beckie is married to my brother and is my second sister.  We always have a great time when we get together. I am always wishing for more time with her, my brother, and their two teenagers.  For example, we missed her party over the weekend since I wasn’t feeling well.  Bummer.

This photo is from our lunch out years ago at the beach.  We had a great time that day and some delicious food.  Over the years, we have enjoyed many meals, many laughs, some sorrows, lots and lots of conversations, inside jokes, and have taken, posed for, and shared many photos.  I am blessed to have her in my life.

Beckie, I hope that you have a great day and another wonderful trip around the sun!  I also hope to see you again soon.  Take care!  Love ya.

A few birthday quotes:

  • “The first fact about the celebration of birthdays is that it is a good way of affirming defiantly, and even flamboyantly, that it is a good thing to be alive.” ~ G.K. Chesterton
  • “A birthday is just the first day of another 365-day journey around the sun. Enjoy the trip.” ~ Author unknown
  • “Growing old is mandatory; growing up is optional.” ~ Chili Davis
  • The secret of staying young is to live honestly, eat slowly, and lie about your age.” ~ Lucille Ball

Happy Birthday Dear Cindy!

Girls.In.BootsHappy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday Dear Cindy, Happy Birthday To you!  Today is my sister Cindy’s 40-something birthday!  Here we are rocking our boots and socks. We just recently discovered this photo.

I hope she has a great and wonderful day and wish that I could be with her.  As I have written before, she was my first friend and a close confidant. Almost all of my early memories include her.  She was the blond great sister and I was the brunette.  Not sure which one had more fun, but we both did our best to.

As you can see from our photos, we are hams for the camera.  Our brother is as well.  The three of us had a great childhood and remain friends.  Our parents taught us to love each other, stand up for each other, and take care of each other.  I thank them for that and all that they taught us.

The fact we are still close and love to be together is an amazing blessing that I treasure very much.  It is now great that our kids love to spend time together and have fun.  Ian loves to be with Cindy’s kids and Richmond’s as well.  Cousin time is as special as sibling time.

My sister is an amazing woman, friend, teacher, wife, mother, singer, actor, crafter, and so much more.  She loves to see children learn, loves the beach, savors time to read and relax, enjoys singing, watching her children in their sporting events, loves coffee and chocolate, and being with her friends and family.  She is awesome and I love that she is in my life.

I have enjoyed many special times with Cindy. Among them are:

  • Camping with our family
  • Playing pounce with family and dear friends
  • Listening to Grandpa’s stories
  • Sunsets at Mission Beach
  • Reading at the beach
  • Games and campfires
  • Fish tacos
  • Singing songs at Camp Tiyani
  • Family sing-alongs
  • Swimming at Grandpa and Grandma’s pool
  • Sleep-overs in the La Mesa front room
  • Visiting state parks
  • Driving across the country
  • Hearing a song one too many times
  • Community theater and high school theater
  • Sharing a room for years
  • Being each other’s maid of honor/matron of honor
  • Witnessing our children’s baptisms
  • Comforting each other in loss
  • Celebrating amazing milestones

Below are a few of my favorites photos of the two of us and with Richmond. Cindy, I hope to see you soon and celebrate. Love you so much!

Giggle.4-18-2016 DSC06098 girls at beach Three crazy kids Cindy.Patti.on.slide

Happy Birthday Dear Dawn!

Patti.Dawn.HB_5-17-2016Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday dear Dawn. Happy Birthday to you! 

Today is my friend Dawn’s 40-something birthday! She is one of my favorite people. I have many wonderful memories of the two of us.

We met at the beginning of our freshman year in college and have been friends ever since.

You know how you sometimes click immediately with people? We did and have stayed close. Sadly, we don’t see each other as much anymore, but we will keep in regular touch. So that is great.

This photo was taken at Dawn’s wedding at a lovely mountain spot. It was a fun day, a small and intimate wedding, and then a great reception.  It was so fun to be a part of this celebration with her.

We have celebrated a lot over the years — each other’s weddings, weddings of friends, vacations, the births of our children, and so much more. And we have comforted one another during losses and deaths.

In Beaches, one character says of the other, my memory of you is very long. Or something like that. That is how it is with my friend Dawn. My life has been richer for having this dear friend.

Hope you have a great day Dawn and lots of fun with your family and friends.  Only wish that I could be there to celebrate with you.

Flashback Friday – Tammy

FF.12-4-15_TammyHi and Happy Friday!  For today’s Flashback, I decided to write about my friend Tammy who celebrates her birthday tomorrow.  She was my best friend in elementary school and I have written about her before.  I am blessed to still be friends with her.

This photo is of Tammy and me and our sisters.  From left: Cindy (my sister), Sonya (Tammy’s sister), me, and Tammy.  This was taken in the early 1990s, but I cannot remember where.

The four of us have always had fun together and have always enjoyed laughing.  When I think of fun and giggles, I always think of these three gals.  My memory is very long of each of them.

Despite them moving away a long time ago, we have stayed in touch.  And, several years ago, Tammy came to the beach with her husband and children.  We all had a wonderful visit.

It is such a treasure to have a life-long friend such as Tammy.  I love that we can pick up right where we did when we last saw one another.  I want to wish her a very special and early Happy Birthday!  Hope you have a wonderful day tomorrow!  May God bless you on tomorrow’s celebration of your birth!

Today I am thankful for:

  • Tammy and our lifelong friendship
  • Memories of the four us having fun and laughing
  • Having our children play together
  • Old photos that I have scanned in
  • A sunny yet chilly morning
  • The upcoming weekend and time to sleep in
  • Christmas music and movies
  • Specials on television
  • Time to read a library book

I wonder when I will see Tammy again?  I hope it is soon.  Until then, we will stay in touch and in one another’s lives.

Happy 8th Birthday to Ian!

n539281610_366595_2660Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday dear Ian, Happy birthday to you!  Kirk and I sang that song for him this morning during his breakfast.

Right before we did, Ian asked me, “Mom, can this be a birthday breakfast?.”  I said,   “Sure Ian.”  We then got the lighter and his candle. He blew out his 8 candle, ate his breakfast, and then opened his birthday presents.

He was happy to open them and have us talk about the day he was born.  However, he said he wasn’t 8 years old yet since it wasn’t yet the time that he was born.  This comment made me smile.

Last night, Ian helped me make cupcakes for his class for snack time.  He was thrilled about that. Tonight we will celebrate some more.  Then tomorrow will be parties and more fun.

On this rainy Friday morning, Ian went to school and was happy to be there.  I think he will have fun celebrating with his classmates.

Today I am thankful for:

  • A child who smiles as he opens his gifts
  • A boy who reads pages from his new book before school starts
  • Morning hugs and cuddles
  • Birthday fun and celebrations
  • Time with dear friends and family
  • Watching Ian as he looks at baby pictures and sees information about his birth
  • The blessing of motherhood
  • My husband and son
  • Hot coffee with creamer
  • Raincoats on a messy morning
  • A garage door opener
  • Socks and rain boots
  • The start of fall break
  • 8 birthdays with Ian

I wonder how our birthday weekend will be?  I think it will be fun and very special.  And, I cannot wait to enjoy it!

Happy Birthday Dear Cindy!

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERA Sept.24_POD_Loud

Today is my sister Cindy’s birthday!  She is awesome and so much fun.  I only wish I could be with her today.

She was my first friend and remains one to this day.  She is an amazing teacher, mother, wife, and all-around cool person.  I am honored to have her in my life.

This summer we will have some time together at the beach.  I cannot wait!  We will be with our families and look forward to lots of fun.

May you be blessed and have a wonderful special day!  Love you sis.  Hope you enjoy these pictures!  They are some of my favorite old photos of us.

(They are all I Still Wonder – Patti Cates images.)The drells at Mission Beach

girls at beach Three crazy kids Cindy.Patti.on.slide

The Blessing of Friendship

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERAToday is the birthday of one of my oldest friends.  I don’t mean oldest by age but oldest as in the one who I have known the longest — except for family members. Happy 40-something Birthday to you dear Tammy!

My earliest memory of us being friends was in second grade.  We may have known each other before that too, but I just don’t remember.  Do you remember Tammy?

While in second grade, we had the same teacher Mr. Toler.  He was a fantastic teacher and one of the best.  One day that I still remember, we got in trouble for talking in class.  He pulled us out of the class and sent us to the coat closet to try to behave again.  Well, needless to say, we still had too much to discuss.  The punishment didn’t quite work since we kept talking.  Our parents were both called I think.

In addition to talking, we have always loved to laugh.  She is one of my favorite ones to laugh with.  We liked to laugh with our younger sisters too.  The four of us had a blast together! I hope that the four of us and our families can get together soon.

One of the nicest things that Tammy ever did was surprise me by attending my wedding.  The day before the wedding, she called me and said she wished she could be there. Little did I know she was downstairs.  When she came up the stairs, I screamed and starting crying happy tears.  It was so special to have her in town for our wedding.  If I had known, I would have asked her to be in the wedding.

So that day, I had my sister, my sister-in-law, and my best friends from elementary school, high school, and college there.  Five very special women were there for the big day and that meant the world to me. I am still friends with all of them and keep in regular touch with all of them.  What an amazing blessing that is!

Long-term friendships are few and rare so I am very thankful to still be friends with Tammy.  Although we don’t see each other as much as I’d like to, we seem to always pick right back up where we left off.  And, we always have a great time.  And, Ian had a blast playing last time with her son.  Hopefully the boys can get together again.

This photo is of the two of us the last time we were together at the beach two years ago.  Tammy, hope to see you again soon!

Hope you have a wonderful birthday Tammy!  Thanks so much for the blessing of your friendship!!    And, just between us, Cindy, and Sonya, AGADKTGA!!!!!!!  GGP rock!!!

Happy Birthday Dear Pam!

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERA Today is the birthday of one of my favorite people — my cousin Pam.  Happy birthday to you dear Pam!  May you have an amazing and wonderful day! May you have fun and a great celebration!!!

We have been good friends for many years but have never lived close to one another.  The distance doesn’t matter and for that I am always thankful. In fact, each time we see each other we pick up right where we left off and always have much to talk about. And we stay in touch with one another during times we aren’t together in the same city.

Kirk, Ian, and I went to see her this summer and had so much fun.  We laughed, we chatted, we drank our wine and it was terrific!!  It was great being at her lovely house with Pam, her hubby, and family.  We hadn’t seen each other for 4 years before that.

img073Growing up, she was my beautiful and cool cousin from California.  I loved the summers we would go there and see her and her family.   I remember in high school listening to the  music of the day and always remember “You Spin Me Right Round,” by Dead or Alive as a song we’d dance to.  That was one of many songs that we used to enjoy together.

To borrow a line for the movie “Beaches,” my memory of her is very long.  I love that and love that we still have a blast together.  And, our husbands get along well too.  She still is my cool cousin and just as beautiful, but I like it that now we both live in the south.

Pam, I wish we could be with you today to celebrate!  Hope you have a wonderful day!  Love you so very much!  And I hope to see you and your wonderful family again soon!!!

The first of these photos was taken this summer.  The second is from the early 1990s when I had a sunburn. These are two of many photos I have — all of them remembering a special moment.

I love all of my other cousins too!  I am so fortunate to have a great group of cousins.  Last week, one cousin Robbi celebrated her birthday.  She too is an amazing woman and a friend.  I am sorry that I missed a blog for you Robbi!  We enjoyed a wonderful and fun party with her and her family.

To all of my cousins, I love you so very much and wish we could see each other more than we do. Hopefully we will again soon.  Cousins truly are our first friends other than our siblings and I am honored to have the best!

Throwback Thursday – Dad and Kirk

10-24_TBTTomorrow is my wedding anniversary as well as my Dad’s birthday.  He was kind enough to share his birthday with us. So for today’s Throwback Thursday, I wanted to include a photo from 2010 of (from left) Kirk, Ian, and Dad.

We were at the beach and the three of them were being silly with their backwards hats. I only wish Ian had been looking up, although it is cute since they are both holding onto his arms and keeping him on the fence.

That year, Dad was the amazing Father of the Bride, which we put on a cake in his honor at the rehearsal dinner.

The other photo is of me on my dad’s lap when I was a child.  It is one of my favorites of the two of us.

I love these guys!  I can’t wait to celebrate our special days with both of them tomorrow.

Happy Birthday to you dear Dad — tomorrow.  And, Happy Anniversary to you babe — also tomorrow.  Love ya both so much!

Happy Birthday To You Mom!

1596SANYO DIGITAL CAMERAGEDSC DIGITAL CAMERAToday is my mother’s birthday!  Happy Birthday to you dear Mom!  Hope you have a wonderful day!

I thought an assortment of photos would be nice.  One is of me with Mom and Ian.  We took that on Mother’s Day of 2013. Another  is of the two of us at a yummy Mexican Restaurant in California.  The last one is when I was very young.  It was taken at my grandparents’ house, I think.  I love our hairdo, clothing, and smiles.   We have been smiling and posing ever since!

Tonight we are having my mom and dad over for dinner, cake and ice cream, and then all of us will go to a Cub Scout meeting when Ian will get his first patch.  The fact that they will be there is awesome!  I love that she is sharing her birthday with Ian and his accomplishments!  Should be a fun evening!

My mother loves to be with her children and now her grandchildren!  She loves spending time with all of us and making amazing memories.  She has taught me so much over the years of the importance of family and spending quality time together.

For many years, Mom worked as a teacher.  She was fantastic, did an amazing job of teaching, and loved those kids.  And, they loved her.  Last year, she helped in Ian’s class and that was also great.  She is now retired but still loves teaching and helping children learn to read.

Mom is one of the best singers I know.  I always love hearing her sing Bali Hai from “South Pacific” as well as O Holy Night during the Christmas season.  She is now the choir director at church after having done that years ago.

She also loves to read, sew, make jewelry, travel to the beach house, and is our family genealogist.  When I was a teenager, we worked on a family book.  This was the era before computers.  So we traveled to many libraries and looked up in many card catalogs with actual cards.  Now, she is doing an update and finding a lot of things online.

Mom, until I became a mother, I didn’t appreciate all that you have done for me.  I cannot thank you enough for always being there for me throughout my life.  You have taught me love, the blessings of family, the love of music, family history, reading, and so much more.

Here are a few quotes about mothers:

  • “Being a full-time mother is one of the highest salaried jobs in my field, since the payment is pure love.” ~ Mildred B. Vermont
  • “The phrase “working mother” is redundant.” ~ Jane Sellman
  • “The moment a child is born, the mother is also born. She never existed before. The woman existed, but the mother, never. A mother is something absolutely new.” ~ Rajneesh
  • “Call your mother. Tell her you love her. Remember, you’re the only person who knows what her heart sounds like from the inside.” ~ Rachel Wolchin

I love you very much Mom!  I wish you a very special day!  Looking forward to seeing you tonight!