Tag Archives: family

Miscellany

The race

RunThe last wave–the wee runners, and their encouragers

It was a weekend of family to-dos. One of which included a fun run: one mile up historic Harrison Boulevard by waves of elementary school children, the occasional parent or pet thrown in for moral support.

We planted our feet in a grassy spot, mid-way, on what we soon found to be the boys’ side; then we waited for familiar faces. Until that time, I stood content to cheer on any fellow who ran before me:

The fellow pushing his friend . . .

The fellow without legs . . .

The fellow who obviously had runners as parents . . .

The fellow who most certainly did not . . .

All sorts and varieties ran, walked, rolled, or limped past. They were strong and brave and handsome, every last one of them.

For our part, we clapped and cheered and carried on. Well done, men! Good job! Look—you can see the finish line!

It may have been the smallest trace of a smile, it may have been a second wind (even if he yelled, “There are a thousand miles to go!” as he ran past), but that odd group of strangers, cheering on the sidelines, managed to make a difference.

Sure, an attitude sneaked in every now and again, but for the most part, they seemed grateful for a little push to carry on. One small fellow even ran a bit closer, looked me in the eye, and said, “Thank you,” as he jogged past.

And then my heart melted.

See? A little encouragement goes a long way. Something to keep in mind as we continue the race we call our own . . .

Miscellany

Special delivery alert

I am now the proud auntie of both a nephew and a niece. That’s right—Miss Ella Mae made her debut this morning; and she’s 19.6 inches, 7.7 pounds of pure deliciousness.

Oh, Sweden, why must you be so far away?

You know, we tend to wrap these wee ones in a thick, woolen blanket of hopes and dreams—we want them to be happy and successful, full of peace and filled with laughter. Every moment, of every day.

But I think the best thing we can do, right from the start, is simply offer a prayer of thanks. To take a moment and truly celebrate.

So I hope you’ll join me in celebrating a new little someone to love. At some point during the day I hope you’ll eat your favorite food, sip your favorite beverage, play your favorite tunes. You might dance, you most definitely should laugh. You know, partake of the good stuff.

In that, we can say with authority, welcome to the world, sweet baby girl . . .

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Miscellany

Seconds

I knew nothing of her growing up. I knew her half-sister—the daughter of my mom’s cousin—from summer visits, where we’d play Holly Hobbie Colorforms on the front steps of our great grandmother’s house.

But it was years later, long after I’d grown, that my grandmother introduced me to Gabe. Even then she was little more than a name on a wedding invitation—your cousin, Gabrielle, my grandmother had said. She then proceeded to tell me how Gabe had fallen in love with a hockey player; how they’d planned a big, black tie affair; how it was sure to be quite the event. It was all very lovely, to be sure.  Yet I paid little mind to that cousin of mine–our lives, it seemed, were worlds apart.

And we do have our differences. She’s a vegetarian; I’m something of a carnivore. She’s an extremely talented artist (and natural Do-It-Yourself-er); I’m not so much. She enjoys physical activity; I enjoy lounging about (remember this little gem? That’s us; side-by-side).

Still, we’re alike in ways that matter. We share a love of friends and family, vintage fashion and fine photography, of making the simplest of moments, grand. So while I’d be hard pressed to tell you when, exactly, we met face-to-face, I can tell you it seems as though we’ve known each other forever.

Just goes to show, you don’t have to grow up with your family members to share a bond. When it comes to cousins–first, second, or otherwise–the fun doesn’t have to be relegated to moments of play in childhood. As a matter of fact, finding a kindred spirit where you least expect it, just might be the most fun of all . . .

Miscellany

Making 60 look good

Today’s my mum’s sixtieth birthday!

She was supposed to be a Christmas baby, you know, but she got a bit impatient. Instead she arrived to this world shriveled, with nary an eyelash or eyebrow to be seen. Good chance hers was a face only a mother could love. Of course, it didn’t take long for her to turn into the cutie patootie we know and love today . . .

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And she just kept getting more beautiful, with each passing day . . .

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I’m pretty lucky to call her my mama. The more I’ve aged, the more our friendship has grown true. As a matter of fact, looking at old pictures of her and her friends, it looks no different than when we hang out . . .

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OK, maybe the styles have changed a bit, but other than that, totally the same.

Personally, I hope this is the most delightful decade yet.

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So to Debra Kaye, Happy 60th Birthday!

Here’s to you and laughter and the best of shenanigans in the coming years . . .

Miscellany

In the company of friends

It was a weekend filled with friends, old and new, and family, near and far. My cousin sent texts—including a photo and a video—so we could be a part of the wedding on Friday. The wedding on Saturday was lovely. I cried, as I’m wont to do. Sunday, I met my cousin for an unexpected breakfast. She’s in town for a wedding. We sat around a table of buttermilk pancakes and bacon, sipping hot cocoa and coffee, and caught up on lost time. We chatted travel; we laughed about stories of tomfoolery; and we decided we simply must visit Europe together, someday. I also received a note from a friend on Sunday. Her son had been the Psalmist the day before, so she sent a video. Again with the tears. But he looked so small and grown up all at once–and he did such a good job. Of course, kids singing in church tend to be more than I can handle. So there’s that. Sunday afternoon found us meandering  next door where we sat with a few of our neighbors, eating grilled Greek-style lamb pita sandwiches with Tzatziki sauce, salad, and more desserts than I’d care to mention. We nursed New Age “Tinchos;” with birds singing and water dancing as our backdrop, we took the first steps in getting to know one another.

As I sat there in the cool of the shade, I thought of all the people with whom I shared my weekend. Some, I’ve known all my life; others, I’ve never actually met in person–only through blogs and emails–yet I call them friends. I guess you might say, my weekend served a good reminder of just how lucky I am–that the small things, truly are the great . . .