Flashback Friday – Family

ff118_familyHi and Happy Friday.  For today’s Flashback Friday, I decided to use an old family photo from the 1970s.  It is one that Mom just sent to me and I love it.  Besides, the photo challenge for yesterday was family.

Here is my family.  I am the one in the middle. Interesting how we are all barefoot except for Dad.  I love these old photos and treasure them like gold.  Seeing the changes of all of us and the next generation in these faces is fascinating.  I just wish I could remember what I was thinking back then.

I love this family of mine — me, my sister, my brother, our mother and our father.  I love this photo too since it is so 70s.  The clothes, the hair, the couch, the wall, and did you notice the flag in the corner?  So retro and so cool.

I am fortunate to have grown up in a family where we were taught and shown unconditional love, acceptance, and compassion.  Also, we were taught to be kind and respect those different from ourselves.  Kirk and I are now teaching that to Ian.

My extended family is equally as awesome.  We are diverse in everything – our beliefs and our religions, who we love, how we earn our livings, what we are passionate about, our politics, and so much more.  Each one is unique and special and I love them all with all of my heart. Also, I have learned a lot from them.

I have recently had the pleasure of editing a family history book that Mom wrote.  And, I have to say from ancestors to those living today, my family is amazing. So many people have been passionate about so many things and we are all so different.  I am blessed beyond measure to be a part of this amazing legacy.

Today I am thankful for:

  • My loving parents
  • My fun siblings who are life-long friends
  • My amazing hubby and son
  • My wonderful in-laws
  • My fabulous aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews
  • Learning about my heritage
  • Learning about my grandparents and many great grandparents
  • Growing up knowing that differences in people are okay and interesting
  • Long talks with loved ones who see the world differently than I do
  • Kindness and compassion towards others
  • Love not hate

I look forward to family time during the holidays and cannot wait for more time to chat and learn more about them.  I hope to see my extended family in the summer again soon.  Love to all of them.

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Halloween Flashback Friday

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHi and Happy Friday!  In a few days it will be the last day of October and Halloween.  My this month has flown by.  This photo is from many years ago of Ian dressed as Elmo.  As you can see, I was in a similar outfit.

I know several families who do not celebrate Halloween.  We do, but ours is the fun dress-up Halloween, not the scary one that many people seem to like. Each year, I have to warn Ian that some people like scary stuff.  We do not, as he likes to remind me.

We are ready to walk around the neighborhood and ask for candy.  It is supposed to be warm so that will work well for his costume.  He is wearing the same as what he did last year and is excited about that.

A few Halloween questions.  What are your answers?  Mine are below.

  • Store bought costume or homemade?  Ours are usually homemade.
  • Favorite candy? Junior Mints, M&Ms, and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups
  • Stay home or go out?  We trick-or-treat and then come home and give out candy
  • Favorite scary movie?  Don’t like them so none

Hope you have a great weekend and a fun Halloween if you celebrate it!  We sure will.

Flashback Friday – Fall Beauty

fallback1Hi and Happy Friday!  Yesterday was the first day of autumn or fall, my favorite season of the year.  Did you have a good one?  I did, but the weather sure doesn’t feel like fall, at least not yet.

This photo was taken two years ago in North Carolina.  The colors of the leaves was gorgeous.  I don’t know how this year will be since it has been so dry and hot.  We shall see.

Don’t get me wrong I really like the summer and we always have a great time and enjoy the time we have together.  However, fall is when the weather is the best, our routine comes back, and life is very rich with so many great activities.

There are so many things that I like about the fall:

  • Pumpkin Spice lattes
  • The chill in the air
  • Not sweating on our walks home
  • Celebrating my wedding anniversary with my love
  • Celebrating Ian’s birthday
  • Celebrating my parent’s birthdays
  • Celebrating two nephews’ birthdays
  • Celebrating cousins’ birthdays
  • Football games
  • Hot drinks
  • Cozy blankets
  • Tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches
  • Baking items
  • Campouts and campfires
  • Premieres of favorite shows
  • Amazing smells and scents
  • Lovely reds, brilliant golds and oranges
  • The crunch of leaves
  • Long sleeve shirts and jeans

I wonder what this fall will bring?  I hope it will be cooler weather, fun times with family and friends, and some great food and drinks.  Take care and enjoy!

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.

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.

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.

Flashback Friday – Independence Day

DSC05822 (2)“Freedom is never free.” — Author Unknown

Hi and Happy Friday!  Hope you have a great 4th of July weekend.  I am looking forward to the time, although it will be raining for much of it.

Here I am pictured with Kirk in our 4th of July finest.  This was taken in Fort Pierce, FL, before Ian was born.  Seems like forever ago.

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERAThe below picture was taken a few years ago of Ian holding the United States flag in front of his face.  It was posted originally for a photo of the day challenge.

I always enjoy our Independence Day celebration — with a cookout, flags waving, patriotic music, and fireworks.  It is a time to enjoy and have fun with family and friends.

I also like to stop and be appreciative of the freedoms our country has.  I feel blessed to have them.  I also like to thank those who have made this freedom possible.  Thanks to our veterans and current servicemen and women.  Because of you, we can live in the land of the free and the home of the brave.

Here are a few quotes about Independence Day and freedom:

  • My patriotic heart beats red, white, and blue. ~ Author Unknown
  • From every mountain side, Let Freedom ring. ~ Samuel F. Smith, “America”
  • You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness.  You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism. ~ Erma Bombeck
  • Freedom has its life in the hearts, the actions, the spirit of men and so it must be daily earned and refreshed – else like a flower cut from its life-giving roots, it will wither and die. ~ Dwight D. Eisenhower
  • And I’m proud to be an American, where at least I know I’m free. And I won’t forget the men who died, who gave that right to me.~ Lee Greenwood

I wonder if we can truly appreciate our freedoms and live life to the fullest while being kind and loving to others?  I hope and pray that we can!  Hope you have a great weekend.

Flashback Friday – May 1st

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERAHi and Happy 1st Day of May!  Hope you have a great Friday!  I don’t know about you, but I have to say, TGIF!  This has been a crazy busy week and I am ready for the weekend.

I totally missed Throwback Thursday yesterday, so I decided to write a Flashback Friday instead.  Here is a photo of Ian from 5 years ago.  It was taken during a visit by our local fire department to the kid’s reading program at the library.

He was fascinated at sitting in the driver’s seat of the fire truck. I love seeing the huge steering wheel next to his short legs and little feet.  He is way too small for the spot but seems to be enjoying it just the same.

Today I am thankful for:

  • Our city’s library and the amazing books
  • Our city fire department and other services
  • Girls’ Night Out with dear friends
  • Yummy food and wine
  • Hats to cover up a bad hair day
  • Laughing at jokes and shared stories
  • Play time for Ian with a friend
  • Date night with hubby
  • My mom’s pot roast and potatoes
  • My dad reading with Ian and helping him with projects
  • Hugs between grandparents and grandson
  • Early mornings with my guys
  • Hearing good news
  • Answers to prayer
  • My home and community
  • My loved ones

I wonder what this Friday will bring?  I cannot wait to find out and am looking forward to it.  Hope you have a great one.

Flashback Friday – Yummy Cake!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHi and Happy Friday. I don’t know about you but I am very thankful it is Friday. I missed Throwback Thursday, so instead decided to post today.  For Flashback Friday, I decided to include a photo of Ian from when he was still in his high chair.

He had just finished a small piece of cake and it went everywhere. He still likes chocolate but is much less messy with it than he was when this photo was taken. We were at a birthday party and sitting out on the deck. Ian seems to be enjoying the view along with his treat and drink.

It is amazing to see the changes between then and now. So many wonderful milestones have been met and surpassed. Now he loves to sit at the table to eat and has great conversations with us about his day, what he has learned, and his latest Lego creation.

Today I am thankful for:

  • Umbrellas on this rainy day
  • Rain boots and puddles
  • Hot tea, cereal, and fruit for breakfast
  • A son who loves to read
  • Ian’s creative and amazing imagination
  • Parties with our families
  • Chocolate cake and milk
  • Movie nights with pizza and popcorn
  • Walking home from school on a warm and windy day
  • Date night with my hubby
  • Saturday mornings in our pajamas
  • Messy hair and special hugs
  • Laughing with friends and family
  • Time with family and friends

I wonder what new picture I will get of someone eating cake? I doubt it will be as messy as this one was! But it will still be fun.  Have a great weekend!

Flashback Friday – February 27

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHappy Friday!  Can you believe it’s almost the end of February?  I can’t.  This month has gone so fast.  The last two weeks are a blur since we were home so much.

I decided on a photo of Ian with bare feet in the sand since I have been cold all day.  Between the ice and snow that are still melting, the water, and shoveling the driveway, I have been outside a few times today.  So brr since it was below freezing all day long.

This photo goes way back and makes me smile.  I think Ian was two years old.  We were at a beach in Florida and he was enjoying the feel of the sand and exploring all around.  This beach has lots of shells so that is fun.

I cannot wait for warmer weather!  I am over the freezing temps and will be glad when it is warm again.

Take care and have a great weekend!