Throwback Thursday – Happy Boy

TT_7-7-Happy BoyHi and Happy Thursday! Hope you are having a great day.  Here is a photo of Ian at almost 3 years old.  He was standing on the lifeguard stand and watching the sun set into the ocean.  He was extremely happy and having a great time at Mission Beach in California.

This is one of my all-time favorite pictures of him.  I love the total glee and happiness that he is expressing.  I love how much he seems to be loving life.  And I love this smile and this boy.  This photo was lightened so his facial expression was visible.

He has always been a happy child and fun to be around.  He has moments of being grouchy or difficult when he is overly tired, hungry, doesn’t want to do something or is sick.  But for the most part, he is content, has plenty to do, and lives in the moment.  He has taught me to do that.  He has also taught me to make the most of each day,

While looking at this photo, I wondered when was the last time that I was this happy?  When did I throw away all of my worries and cares and just be gleeful?  I have laughed recently with family members and friends. I have cracked up at a funny memory or cartoon with Ian or a favorite comedy with Kirk.  But I also have cried over family and friends who are sick, the loss of a loved one, and the terrible things on the news.

I have always loved watching the news and reading newspapers since that has been a life-long passion and vocation for me.  However, more and more it has been hard to tune in without becoming emotional during the broadcast or angry.  I continue to be amazed at what people do to one another.  And, trying to explain that to Ian can be a challenge.

This summer we have been making time for fun and to be in the moment. We have had  time for swimming, watching funny movies, lazy days, ice cream treats, games, library books, walks, and many other fun things.  So far it has been great and a real treasure.  As bad things happen, we talk about them and pray about them as well.

Today I am thankful for:

  • My hubby who I am sharing this life journey with
  • Our son who I love beyond measure
  • Amazing friendships
  • My wonderful family
  • Prayer support from our church, family, and friends
  • Ian’s friends
  • Lego builds
  • Play time
  • Air-conditioning
  • Playing games
  • Books and the ability to read
  • Creativity and making up stories
  • No alarm clocks in the morning

I wonder if I can live in the moment as much as possible with Ian, Kirk, and our family and friends.  I am doing my best to do just that.

Happy late Fourth!

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERAHappy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday dear America, Happy Birthday to you.  That is what we sang yesterday morning. That was Ian’s idea in honor of the USA’s 240th birthday.  We had a great holiday weekend and hope that you did as well!

On Monday morning, we were lazy and watched America: The Story of Us on the History Channel.  It was an in-depth look at our country’s early years, warts and all.  There was a lot to discuss with Ian.  The show mentioned all of the lives that were lost over the years for us to have our freedoms.  We are so thankful for sacrifices by so many brave men and women. This helped us to remember that freedom is never free.

We then went to my parent’s house for a wonderful cookout, great time with family, funny stories, great chats, and some yummy dessert. It was a treat to spend the day with my aunt and cousin as well as Mom and Dad and my guys.  We returned home in time to watch a few symphonies on television including our local one and fireworks.  We also stepped out our back door and watched our city’s fireworks.  Up late but lots of fun.

On Sunday, we went to church and had a great service, then a picnic in the fellowship hall. That afternoon, we went over to Kirk’s brother’s house and had a great meal.  It was so much fun.  We visited, played corn hole, and a game of Porch Ball as we called it.  Imagine a circle of people, a large beach ball, and a porch that is not screened in, wild passes and serves, lots of laughs, and a few curse words when hit in the face by the ball (by me – LOL!)  We had a blast!

Saturday was a great lazy day at home with time to relax, read, and work on the family genealogy book. On Friday, we visited with some dear friends and laughed and had a blast. We always have a great time with these friends and always want more. Then the three of us went out for an early dinner at a local Arby’s where I used to work, went to the store, the library, and then back home to enjoy our evening.

We had a great balance of time at home and time with friends and family.  This week will be more time with family and birthday celebrations — for a dear friend of ours today and Kirk’s as well. Happy Birthday to you dear Karen!

Today I am thankful for:

  • Silly games with family and friends
  • Cookouts and ice cream
  • Laughs with family
  • Chatting for hours with friends
  • Patriotic music by talented musicians
  • Fireworks
  • Many freedoms
  • Birthday celebrations
  • Air conditioning
  • Summer rains
  • Messy hair and long cuddles
  • My two special guys
  • My family
  • My friends
  • Summer break

I wonder what other fun this week will bring?  I cannot wait to find out.  Have a great one!

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

Throwback Thursday – Piano Playing

1598Hi and Happy Thursday.  I came across this photo of myself a while back. It thought it would be fun to share today.  It cracks me up since I seem to be trying to read the music and touching the keys. I must have watched my aunt and some other people to know what to do.

I have always loved music and apparently at this age, loved trying to play some music.  Who knew how it sounded?  I love the smile on my face and how happy I seem to be.  Music has always provided so many emotions and meant so much to me.

This was the piano at my grandparents’ beach house.  It was well-loved and used a lot over the years.  We regularly had sing-alongs there and my aunt would always play the piano for us.  She often played with no sheet music and has always amazed me with that ability.

I have enjoyed playing for years but always got in trouble with my piano teacher for not practicing enough. She was also our organist at church for many years so I saw her several times a week. You would think that the constant reminding would have made me more willing to practice, but no.  It was, in fact, a constant struggle.

Several years ago, Kirk and I bought an electronic piano with many settings and options.  It is fabulous. I still love to play and still need to practice more.  I have a few books of music that I am working on.  They include favorite hymns, show tunes, and Christmas music.  It is fun and something I still need to do more of.

I want Ian to learn to play the piano too.  He has a good ear for music and enjoys touching the keys of our piano.  When he tries, it actually doesn’t sound too bad.  I have a guide to help with the name of each key.  He, like me, will need to practice, practice, practice.  For now, it is still just a fun activity.

I wonder what song I will be able to learn and how long it will take me?  Hopefully not too long, if I will make the time to practice!!

December Blessings

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERAIt is hard to believe that it is the first day of December.  The first day of the last month of the year.  Wow, where did the time go? I love December 1st since it is my birthday.  It is and has been a very special day for me for many, many years.  My family makes a big deal out of birthdays and I love that.  We take time to celebrate each of us and our uniqueness.

Today, I feel overwhelmed with blessings!  From my fabulous weekend of love, family, thanksgiving, and great food.  We had a blast on turkey day with friends and family, ate terrific food, took some wonderful family photos, and watched one of the funniest movies ever — Clue.  There are so many great one-liners.  I just wish I had taken more pictures with my camera!

Then on Friday, Kirk, Ian, and I enjoyed being home and getting our house ready for Christmas.  We puttered around, put up the tree, hung ornaments on it, and then just vegged out.  Ian really enjoyed helping and put our manger under the tree. We stayed in our pjs all day and loved every minute of it.

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERAOn Saturday, we hosted my birthday party with the family. Great time!  Kirk made his delicious chili and made my cake.  I ventured out that morning at 7:30 a.m. to buy our last-minute items.  Then everyone came over and we had a great time.  I received some wonderful gifts and am so very thankful for all of my loved ones. It was a special evening.

Again, I just wish I had taken more photos.  We have a silly tradition of switching the candles around on our cakes.  I don’t remember who started that or when but it is fun and keeps things lively.

Sunday, we went to church and had a great service.  The church is lovely with all of the Christmas decorations and the advent wreath and candles. Ian gave out the popcorn that people had so nicely ordered from him.  We appreciate the support for his Cub Scout troop.  We ate lunch at our house and enjoyed more of the tasty chili.  Mom and Dad stayed for most of the afternoon and Mom and I watched a fun Christmas movie.

Today, we woke up and Kirk and Ian wished me a happy birthday and sang Happy Birthday to me.  We then took Ian to school. He was ready to be back and see everyone after a long weekend.  Kirk and I will have lunch — just the two of us — and that will be fun.  Then after school, we will dine out at one of my favorite Japanese Steakhouses for dinner prior to Ian’s pack meeting.  Each Monday night is busy with Cub Scout activities and today is no exception.

The week will continue with fun and blessings with our first dinner and Advent church service on Wednesday and then assisting in Ian’s room one day this week, and plenty of other fun and adventures are to be had.

Today I am so thankful for:

  • My family who knows me so well
  • Thoughtful birthday gifts
  • Fabulous new accessories
  • Birthday cards that make me laugh and cry happy tears
  • Sipping hot tea while chatting with my mom, aunt, sister, and cousin
  • Special photos with my parents
  • Play time for Ian and his grandparents
  • Ian having a blast with his cousins
  • Laughing like crazy over a funny movie
  • The lights of our Christmas tree
  • Making a wish as a birthday candle is blown out
  • Family clumping
  • The family circle of prayer
  • Birthday wishes from friends and family
  • My faith and beliefs
  • Old photos
  • Holding hands with loved ones

I wonder if I will be able to cherish each and every minute of my special day?  I plan to do just that.  Thanks so much to all of my loved ones who are helping to make it special!  You truly do rock!!

Flashback Friday – Theater Fun

Mairzy and Patti as Nuns Sound of MusicHi and Happy Friday!  For today’s Flashback Friday, I chose a picture from the early 1980s.  Mom and I are dressed as nuns for “The Sound of Music,” which was performed at our community theater.  We were in the chorus of singing nuns and my sister played Marta.  It was such a fun show.  In this picture, I love the expression of our eyes, our smiles, dimples, and the praying hands.  We did have a great time.

Throughout my childhood, I was in plays and musicals and loved every minute of them.  Our community theater produced great shows with amateur actors, singers, and dancers.  There also was a Junior Playhouse for kids.  We spent quite a few summers there.

Some of the shows that we did were “J.B.” about the story of the book of Job in the Bible, “The Emperor’s New Clothes,” “Barnum,” “The Sound of Music,” “Hello Dolly,” and others that I don’t remember.

Then in high school, I was in the drama club and had a blast with that as well.  The shows that I was in for that were “Fiddler on the Roof,” “Our Town,” “Around the World In 80 Days,” “Pillow Talk,” and “Bye, Bye Birdie.”  In college, I performed in three musicals — “Camelot,” “Carousel,” and “South Pacific.”

It has been a long time since I have been on the stage.  I miss the fun and camaraderie that the cast has.  And, since I love to sing, it was fun to have that chance.  Long days and many hours were spent in the community theater and my high school theater.

We went with Ian’s Cub Scout Den this Monday on a tour of the square where the community theater was and still is.  It was fun to see that building again and it brought back a lot of great memories. During the summers of junior playhouse, we would walk down to the local pharmacy for snacks and ice cream.  That pharmacy is no longer there.  That building was converted into a restaurant.  The food is good but I miss the pharmacy.

I also love to see musicals and plays.  Two years ago, we took Ian to see Peter Pan and he loved it.  It was an abbreviated production during the school day, but just right for him.  I hope we will see more shows soon.

We have a few friends who are professional actors and I love to see them in their particular genres.  We also have friends who are actively involved in the theaters in their community.  Theater to me was a fun hobby.

A few quotes about the theater:

  • “All the world’s a stage, And all the men and women merely players; They have their exits and their entrances, And one man in his time plays many parts, His acts being seven ages…” William Shakespeare
  • “Movies will make you famous; Television will make you rich; But Theatre will make you good.” — Terrance Mann
  • “Act well your part; there all the honour lies.” — Alexander Pope
  • “Life is a theatre set in which there are but few practicable entrances.” — Victor Hugo
  • “An actor must never be afraid to make a fool of himself.” — Harvey Cocks
  • “The stage is a magic circle where only the most real things happen, a neutral territory outside the jurisdiction of Fate where stars may be crossed with impunity. A truer and more real place does not exist in all the universe.”– P.S. Baber

I wonder when the next time will be that I am in a play or a musical?  I am not sure but hope to be in a show again one day.

Throwback Thursday – Yummy Meal

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFor today’s Throwback Thursday, I decided to include a photo when Ian was about 2 years old.  As you can see, he is wearing much of his meal.  He seemed to like it and thought it was yummy.

I love his expression, his smile, big and bright eyes, and the messy hairdo.  I just wish I could remember what the meal was.  Probably spaghetti since that was always a messy time.

Now that it is 1 week since he turned 7 years old, it is fun to look back at these old photos. Images like this bring back such fun memories. And make me realize how fast time goes and how important it is to capture such precious times.

Today I am thankful for:

  • Messy hands and faces
  • A happy boy after a yummy meal
  • Remembrances of Ian at 2-years-old and each year since
  • A 7-year-old who is excited to buy a new book with his birthday money
  • Upcoming fall break for some down time
  • Having a camera to capture our fun and crazy days
  • A chance to visit great teachers during a school open house
  • Cooler mornings and evenings and warmth during the day
  • Laughter and funny stories
  • Catching up with a dear friend or family member
  • Making meals with my family

I wonder if the next time Ian eats spaghetti it will be this messy?  I doubt it but can’t wait to find out.

Throwback Thursday – The Drells

The drells at Mission Beach

For today’s Throwback Thursday, I am going way back to one that was taken in September 1972 in Mission Beach, California. I am not sure if it was taken at the beach or the Bay side, at least I think this is the location.

It is of me and my sister, who I called The Drells.  When I was little, I couldn’t say the girls, so this name was created. This was taken a few months before our brother was born.

I came across this photo while scanning some pictures a few years ago.  I just saw it again yesterday and loved it.

We often wore matching outfits and apparently these bikinis are one of those outfits.  I am the brunette and my sister is the blond.  I don’t have a clue what we were doing but we seem to be having fun.

We both have loved the beach for a long, long time. You can see that we clearly like having our toes in the sand.

Today, I am thankful for:

  • A sister who is a dear friend, amazing woman, and a great teacher
  • My brother, who we met soon after this picture was taken, who is also awesome
  • Our parents who showed us the love of the ocean, the beach, and the importance of family
  • Their spouses and children and my hubby and son who have enriched our family so much
  • Mission Beach where I have enjoyed my time with four generations of my family as well as dear friends
  • Sand in my toes — both as an almost 5-year-old and now
  • The beauty, smell, and feel of the ocean
  • Watching the sun set into the ocean
  • My grandparents who bought a very special home at the beach
  • Amazing family vacations
  • Cousins, aunts, uncles, and friends who made the beach time so special
  • Adding friends to the love of the neighborhood
  • Memories and old photos such as this one

I wonder when the next time will be that I am at the beach with my sister and the rest of our family.  I hope it will be soon.  After all, we do always have a fun and memorable time!

March 6 – Chair / Throwback Thursday

POD_March.6_Chair-Hi and Happy Thursday!  Today’s photo challenge is Chair.  And, since it’s Throwback Thursday, I went with this oldie of me sitting on my Grandpa’s lap.

This chair was at a dear friend’s house and we were having fun visiting.  You can see we are both all smiles and his lap made another great chair for me. I like the color and how shiny the chair is, which is so perfect for the era.  Don’t see many like this anymore.  I can’t remember if it was a recliner or rocking chair or what exactly.

My Grandpa is the one who inspired this blog.  He was so very special to me and I still miss him very much. This was much younger than I remember him looking but it’s still the same smile and joy that he had of seeing his grandchildren.

The clothes are certainly circa late 60s, which is when I think this was taken.  I’ll have to ask my mom for the exact year. I really like Grandpa’s yellow shirt and his sweater.  And, my pink and white polka dot dress with matching hat are wonderful and such fun.  I still love to wear hats and often do.  They just don’t match so perfectly as this one did.

The same day this photo was taken, I sat on my dad’s lap.  It too is one of my favorite pictures.  I love to see these men who have always been so important in my life at a time that I don’t really remember.  Both old and new photos are very special to me. This one and several others I have are real treasures.  And, I love to hear the stories behind them from my parents and other relatives.

I wonder what other treasures I will find with my pictures?  I can’t wait to find out.  And, what interesting chairs I will come across?  Should be fun.  Have a great day!