Flashback Friday – Mom Edition

FF.Mom_5Hi and Happy Friday.  I don’t know about you but I am so glad it is Friday.  For today’s Flashback Friday, it is the Mom edition.  Enjoy!

FF.Mom_1This first photo is from years and years ago of me with Mom at the beach house.  We as usual had windblown hair and were wearing our sunglasses.  It is one of my favorites of the two of us. The next is on the same porch when I was very young (and so were my parents).

Happy Mother’s Day to all moms.  I want to wish my mother, my mother-in-law, my sister, my sisters-in-law, my aunts, cousins, nieces, and friends a very Happy Mother’s Day!  May you have wonderful and special celebrations.

I want to say thanks to my mom for all that she taught me.  She loved my siblings and me and was always there for us.  She showed us what mothering is all about. I am fortunate to have learned from her how to be a mother for my own child.

FF.Mom_2Until I became a mother I had no idea what it felt like to have your heart living outside of your body. Or having a little person who has heard a mom’s heart from the inside.  Wow! Motherhood is a gift and I am happy to be a part of the club.

Not to say it’s always easy because it isn’t.  There are struggles and many tough times but with other mothers to help and our spouses, the journey seems easier. Thanks to all of the moms in my life who have taught me, supported me, and have been there for me.

A few quotes about mothers:

  • “Mothers hold their children’s hands for a short while, but their hearts forever.” ~ Author Unknown
  • “All mothers are working mothers.” ~ Author Unknown
  • “When you are a mother, you are never really alone in your thoughts. A mother always has to think twice, once for herself and once for her child.” ~ Sophia Loren
  • “Mother — that was the bank where we deposited all our hurts and worries.” ~ T. DeWitt Talmage
  • “Mother love is the fuel that enables a normal human being to do the impossible.” ~ Marion C. Garretty
  • “A mom’s hug lasts long after she lets go.” ~ Author Unknown

Happy Mother’s Day!  Hope you enjoy your weekend.  I plan to.

Perfect Spring Day!

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERAHi and Happy Tuesday.  This afternoon is the perfect spring day.  I was able to enjoy it during my walk to and from school.

I walked by myself to go pick up Ian and enjoyed the sights and sounds.  On the way back home, I enjoyed listening to him talk about his day.  These moments are so very special.

I took this photo last spring and still think it is lovely.

Our perfect spring day:

  • The sky is a deep blue
  • The sun is out and shining
  • The wind is blowing
  • A slight chill is in the air
  • In the sun, it is warm and toasty
  • In the shade, there is a hint of cool
  • No humidity
  • The wind is blowing
  • The flowers are blooming
  • The trees are budding
  • Birds are chirping
  • Dogs are barking in their excitement of seeing us
  • The grass is growing
  • The mulch is being placed in yards
  • The neighborhood bunnies are hopping around
  • Kids are riding their bicycles
  • Neighbors are walking

I love the spring and life beginning yet again.  It is lovely.  This is one of the benefits of living in a state with four seasons.  I feel so very blessed.

The only thing I don’t like is that my allergies often act up.  So, I regularly take allergy medication and still enjoy our walks.  I hope to continue to do so.

A few quotes on spring:

  • Spring is nature’s way of saying, “Let’s party!”  ~ Robin Williams
  • In Spring, everything is full of promise… The child sporting upon the lawn, and the season, sympathize together, and nature rejoices in her virgin loveliness. ~ Charles Lanman
  • No matter how long the winter, spring is sure to follow. ~ Proverb
  • In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt. ~ Margaret Atwood

May you have a wonderful spring day.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Here is the blog I wrote last year for St. Patrick’s Day.  I decided to publish it again.  Hope you have a great day!

March 17 is the day to wear green so you don’t get pinched.  It is the day of green food and shamrocks and the day to celebrate all things Irish.

It is the day to enjoy corned beef and cabbage or Irish Stew. It is the day to have a green beer and have a party with friends and family.  It is a day for celebration and fun.  We will be having a yummy Irish inspired meal for dinner.

Hope you have a wonderful St. Patrick’s Day!  May the luck of the Irish be yours today!

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERAHere is one of my favorite Irish blessings in honor of today.

  • May the road rise up to meet you
  • May the wind be always at your back
  • May the sunshine warm upon your face;
  • The rains fall soft upon your fields
  • And until we meet again
  • May God hold you in the palm of His Hand.

And here is a Wish For A Friend:

  • Wishing you a rainbow
  • For sunlight after showers—
  • Miles and miles of Irish smiles
  • For golden happy hours—
  • Shamrocks at your doorway
  • For luck and laughter too,
  • And a host of friends that never ends
  • Each day your whole life through!

And an Old Irish Blessing:

  • May love and laughter light your days, and warm your heart and home.
  • May good and faithful friends be yours, wherever you may roam.
  • May peace and plenty bless your world with joy that long endures.
  • May all life’s passing seasons bring the best to you and yours!

Hope you have a fun and blessed day!

Live Life To The Fullest

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

We love to laugh and open our mouths as wide as possible.  LOL!

Hi and Happy Tuesday.  This morning I have several loved ones on my mind.  They are suffering and going through treatments — several for cancer and one for a brain tumor.  I pray for them and try to encourage them, but they are the strong and amazing ones.

So in honor of these loved ones, I decided to share a photo that I saw a few days ago on Facebook.   It is of quotes about living life to the fullest.  I like all of these items and will try to do them more.

From 102.3 in Australia that posted this, here is a wonderful a way to live life to the fullest.

  • Eat the damn chocolate cake.
  • Walk in the rain and splash in the puddles.
  • Ride with the windows down.
  • Dance.
  • Sing.
  • Talk to strangers.
  • Smile at everyone.
  • Hug someone.
  • Go barefoot.
  • Take naps.
  • Make lots of love.
  • Try new things.
  • Spend time with kids.
  • Laugh every chance you get.
  • Help others.
  • Life life to the fullest.  No regrets.  Life is way too short.

Isn’t that a great list?  I sure think so.

I would add the following:

  • Put your toes in the sand.
  • Jump in the ocean waves.
  • Build a sand castle.
  • Savor time with family.
  • Plan time with life-long friends.
  • Take long walks.
  • Spend time on your hobbies.
  • Say I love you.
  • Make time for date nights.
  • Read for pleasure.
  • Enjoy old photographs.
  • Play board games all day.
  • Help your child discover something new.

There are so many more that I could add.  These are just a few of my list of living life to the fullest.  What is on your list?

May we live our lives to the fullest and make the most of each and every day that we are given.

All Is Calm, All Is Bright

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERAOne of my favorite Christmas songs is Silent Night. To me, it is the perfect song for Christmas Eve as we celebrate the birth of the Christ Child.

Silent night, holy night, all is calm, all is bright
Round yon virgin Mother and Child, holy
Infant so tender and mild,
Sleep in heavenly peace,
Sleep in heavenly peace.
Silent night, holy night, shepherds quake at the sight,
Glories stream from heaven afar, heavenly hosts sing Alleluia.
Christ the Saviour is born,
Christ the Saviour is born.
Silent night, holy night,
Son of God, love’s pure light,
Radiant beams from
Thy holy face, with the dawn of redeeming grace,
Jesus, Lord, at Thy birth,
Jesus, Lord, at Thy birth.
Silent night, holy night, wondrous star, lend thy light;
With the angels let us sing,
Alleluia to our King.
Christ the Saviour is born,
Christ the Saviour is born.
May you have a wonderful and blessed Christmas!

Playground Visit

playground.7Hi and Happy Monday.  Last week, Ian had his Christmas party at school.  Afterwards, the kids went outside to play.  It was a lovely day and unseasonably warm. I had fun taking photos of the playground.  Enjoy!

This visit took me back to when I was in school and had time to play on the playground.  Fun and play are so important to children, and to adults as well.  May we remember to play, no matter how old we are. May we have fun during this busy Christmas season!  God Bless.

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Christmas Five Years Ago

TT.12-17_15Hi and Happy Thursday.  For today’s Throwback Thursday, I included a picture of the three of us at Christmas.  This was taken in 2010 when Ian was 3 years old.

My how has he changed since this photo.  He was into all things that preschoolers love.  He had fun at Christmas but this year is different.  He now understands what it’s all about, enjoys reading his Advent calendar each day, and had fun drafting a long letter to Santa.

In 2010, he got the Candyland game and we played it for hours and hours.  Last year, he received Monopoly and was equally thrilled.  Also, in 2010, Ian received a large fire truck that he was able to get into and play with.  He loved it and still enjoys it today.

I have always loved Christmas and love that he enjoys it as much as I do.  He is very excited to have just today and tomorrow left at school before our break.  Let the holiday fun begin!

Today I am thankful for so much.  We are blessed and fortunate to have our family traditions and our family and friends to enjoy being with.  Among my blessings are:

  • Family traditions with my family of 3 and extended family
  • Ian reading his Advent Bible verses each day
  • Shopping with Ian for an angle tree gift
  • Christmas shows with my guys
  • Hot chocolate and popcorn in the evenings
  • Advent services and meals at church (even though we missed a few because of illness)
  • Christmas party at school
  • Parties with friends
  • Making fudge for gifts
  • Crafting ornaments and other things
  • Choosing favorite photos
  • Playing games with friends and family
  • Hours and hours of fun and laughter
  • A break from our usual routine
  • Seeing friends after years apart
  • Special dinner out with my hubby
  • The upcoming birth of our Savior
  • Messy hair and pjs on Christmas morning

And a few quotes about Christmas:

  • “The best of all gifts around any Christmas tree: the presence of a happy family all wrapped up in each other.” ~ Burton Hillis
  • “One of the most glorious messes in the world is the mess created in the living room on Christmas day. Don’t clean it up too quickly.” ~ Andy Rooney
  • “Our hearts grow tender with childhood memories and love of kindred, and we are better throughout the year for having, in spirit, become a child again at Christmas-time.” ~ Laura Ingalls Wilder
  • “Gifts of time and love are surely the basic ingredients of a truly merry Christmas. “~ Peg Bracken

May you blessed and enjoy this holiday season.

December 8 – Family

Hi and Happy Wednesday!  Today’s photo challenge is Family.   I am blessed with an amazing family.  Both the one I grew up in and with and the one that I married into.  I am thankful for these amazing people – all different, all unique, all special.

From my family, I have learned that differences of opinion are okay and to be respected.  I have learned the meaning of unconditional love.  I have learned how to deal with the joys and sorrows of life.  And, I have learned about partnership, acceptance, and forgiveness.

I have learned so much on every subject from my family.   We all have our own ideas and are comfortable with sharing them.  That to me is an amazing blessing.

My family is perhaps unusual in that we like to be together, we look out for one another, and we truly love one another.  We don’t always agree and may have arguments.  Still there is love and respect and a bond that I am thankful for each day.

This photo is one of my favorites ever taken of my hubby, me, and our son.  We were on vacation at the beach and being silly for the camera as usual.  For some reason, Ian and I had our mouths wide open.  I wish I could remember why our mouths are so big. Anyway, I love this family of three so very much and cherish them both.

For my family who I love so much, I am thankful for:

  • Parents who love me unconditionally
  • Siblings I can always count on
  • Cousins who are true friends
  • Aunts and uncles who loved me like their own
  • Grandparents who I will always cherish
  • My amazing husband and our family
  • A child who I cannot imagine life without
  • In-laws who accept and love me
  • Brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law who are truly siblings
  • Nieces and nephews who I knew and loved before Ian was born
  • Friends made long ago
  • Friends made in all walks of my life
  • Loved ones I have lost and will never forget

A few quotes about family:

  • “The truth is maybe we are just average. But the way I see it — families where parents get up every morning and go to jobs that are hard so they can get their kids through school and through life, and struggle to make it all work and manage to do it with dignity and a little humor — well, that’s not average. That’s extraordinary.” ~ DeAnn Heline and Eileen Heisler, The Middle
  • “Families are like fudge — mostly sweet with a few nuts.” ~ Author Unknown
  • “The family. We were a strange little band of characters trudging through life sharing diseases and toothpaste, coveting one another’s desserts, hiding shampoo, borrowing money, locking each other out of our rooms, inflicting pain and kissing to heal it in the same instant, loving, laughing, defending, and trying to figure out the common thread that bound us all together.” ~ Erma Bombeck
  • “Ohana means family — no one gets left behind, and no one is ever forgotten.” ~ Chris Sanders and Dean DeBlois, Lilo & Stitch
  • “When you look at your life, the greatest happinesses are family happinesses.” ~ Joyce Brothers
  • “Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family. Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one.” ~ Jane Howard
  • “Having a place to go — is a home. Having someone to love — is a family. Having both — is a blessing.” ~ Donna Hedges

I wonder who of my family I will see over the holidays?  I hope I will see each and every one of them.  That will probably not happen.  Still, I will be in touch with all of them.  Hugs and love to you all!!

Flashback Friday – Bare Feet

3.kids.Michigan0001Hi and Happy Friday.  The last two weeks have been crazy busy so I haven’t had any time to write.  I hate when that happens. Today, however, I wanted to write a short blog and post a fun picture.

On this rainy day, I decided on a photo of toes and sand. I was sitting on a dune in Michigan with my sister (center) and my brother (right).  I love our messy hair, striped t-shirts, big smiles, and bare feet. This was during a family vacation with some friends.

We had so much fun on this family vacation.  In addition to visiting the dunes, we went on a tour of a Kellogg’s Cereal packaging plant.  It was fascinating to see how that process works.  We then went back to our friends’ house and created our own plant and enjoyed some free cereal samples.

Also on this trip, we went to have a meal in Canada.  That was long before passports were needed for a quick trip across the border.  We purchased some soft drink bottles while there.  They looked so different and were cool souvenirs.

We were fortunate to have great family vacations.  We regularly went to the family beach house, also went to visit family and friends across the country, and went on camping trips.  Mom and Dad always made sure we had a great time.  I have many fond memories of this vacations.

Now, Kirk, Ian, and I have enjoyed several fun vacations and the first of many camping trips.  My favorite place to go with these two continues to be the beach house.  They seem to have as much fun as I do.

Today I am thankful for:

  • Memorable trips with my family
  • Visiting my grandparents and other relatives
  • Old family photos
  • The sound of rain as I go to sleep
  • A raincoat and umbrella on a rainy day
  • Girls Night Out last night
  • Laughter and stories with dear friends
  • Walking in the rain
  • Prayer support for a sick friend
  • Friendships and family
  • Love and compassion
  • Weekend time to relax

I wonder what our Friday has in store for us?  I know it will be rainy but warm.  So it will be a good time to enjoy being home.  I am so looking forward to that.

Happy Early Birthday To Dad!

Patti.Dad_10-23-2015Tomorrow is my dad’s birthday as well as my wedding anniversary. So, I decided to post my birthday wishes for him today.

This is one of my favorite photos of the two of us from my wedding to Kirk. We were about to walk down the aisle. I love how he is looking at me.

On the 23rd of October 1998, we had our wedding rehearsal and rehearsal dinner.  At the dinner, we served a cake that said “Father of the Bride” in frosting. The cake was delicious and Dad appreciated it very much. Then on Dad’s birthday, he was there as I took my vows and became a married woman. It has always been an honor to share his special day with him. Happy Birthday to you dear Dad! We love you!

I have learned so much from my dad and so appreciate the influence he has been in my life and now Ian’s life. Dad, Kirk and I thank you for that. He loves his family passionately and unconditionally. He is an amazing example of the love of a spouse, a parent, and now a grandparent.

He has always been interested in my thoughts and activities as well as those of my brother and sister. For years I took that for granted. Then a friend of mine from college helped me see how rare it is. I am truly grateful for all that he is. When Dad is with us, he is truly there and listening and engaged in our life.

Some of the things I have learned from my dad are:

  • To work hard
  • That a college education is very important
  • To manage money
  • To make time to play
  • To be sure to say I love you
  • To enjoy ice cream and cookies
  • To take vacations
  • To spend time with family and friends
  • To volunteer for a cause that moves you
  • To play in the floor with children
  • To read, read, read
  • The importance of lifelong friendships
  • To learn about new things
  • To be aware of current events
  • To be true to your word
  • To have faith, honor, and integrity
  • To rest my eyes
  • To be loyal to a team even in the losing seasons
  • To take time to enjoy the little things
  • To enjoy time with a child
  • To stay active
  • To learn new things
  • To get your hands dirty
  • To enjoy the outdoors
  • To have fun with a dog

I love my dad and all that he has done for me and all that he has taught me. He truly is an amazing man.

To you Dad, I love you and always will.  It is my honor to share your birthday with you!  We love you and look forward to your party.