Friday, January 16, 2015

Another Reason To Celebrate 2014.

We have a granddaughter!  This past September the bf's daughter presented to the world this lovely baby girl - Evelyn.  Pure love.  He and I met after all of our children (four between us -  two his, two mine) were grown, so I haven't really ever thought of myself as a "step-mother" and he feels the same way about mine.  Partly because they are grown, and partly because his already have a perfectly good mother and mine a perfectly good father.  But I do love his children, and he loves mine - we both feel like we really lucked out there, because all four of them are people we honestly like, as well as love. And they like us!  And we love the four significant others as well.  How did we get so lucky? Anyway. When his daughter found out she was pregnant she asked me to be the "bonus grandma", an idea I love.

We spent New Year's Eve in Brooklyn this year.  His daughter and mine both moved into larger apartments this past year, so we got to stay with each of them for a few nights in each place. Got to spend a few days with my baby girl and her wonderful young man and their sweet, sweet Great Dane, Luna, and a few days with the bf's daughter, her wonderful young man and their beautiful, wonderful, funny and super-smart Evelyn.  And we all got to spend some time together - his, mine, and ours.  It was the very best way to end the best year ever and start what will surely be another fantastic year.

A few years ago the bf and I were discussing the "what ifs" of becoming grandparents, although at the time we were certain neither of his would have children, as neither was in a committed relationship and both in their mid to late 30's (so many changes in such a short amount of time!).  And neither of mine were showing any interest in becoming parents, so the whole grand parent thing was up in the air (and we were fine with that - really). But we were discussing it anyway.  I asked him what he would want to be called.  He was like "What? You mean I get to pick?" and I said "Yeah, of course".  He thought for a few seconds and then said "Batman".  So far he IS Batman.  We'll see if that lasts.  He can't wait to teach Evelyn how to ride a bike.  I will teach her to garden (and maybe a little yoga).

Sunday, January 11, 2015


Happy 2015!  I know in my bones it's gonna be a great year, but nothing - NOTHING - will probably ever come close to being as good as 2014 was for me.

I have so many reasons that 2014 was such a great year, all of which I hope to share here in the coming weeks.  This is just one of them:

Travis, the groom, prefaced this move at the end of their first dance by saying "We didn't practice this part - hope it works out."

My oldest baby girl got married in October! She and her husband (still so weird to say that) live in Austin, but decided they wanted to get married here in Wilmington (NC).  About a week after they got engaged Kendra called me and said "you know Mom, all I care about is my dress (fashion is her business, after all :D) and that at the end of the day I will be married to Travis.  Would you mind handling the rest of it?"  What? Are you kidding? Who gets this lucky?! I immediately started planning and having the time of my life.  I would send her links and we shared a Pinterest page (more like 12 Pinterest pages) so we could share ideas, but most of the time she would just say "Mom, you know what I want before I do! Let's do it!" I did manage to surprise them with a few small details which they loved.

Is this a beautiful bride or what?  She is lucky enough to have married a guy whose sister is a wedding dress designer and maker, so Kendra designed the dress, and Jessica made it for her. A gorgeous dress for a gorgeous bride.  I'm not completely biased - she is a beautiful bride.

They decided to do the "first look" (see each other alone with just the photographer before the ceremony).  I would highly recommend that - they did all the photos before the ceremony which left them free to join all of us at the party immediately after the ceremony.   They loved being able to do that.


"True Love is a Very Big Deal" is from The Princess Bride - one of Kendra's favorites when she was little.  The saying there was a little surprise for them from me.  Unbeknownst to me or anyone else, the officiate - a long time friend of the grooms - started the ceremony with the word "Mawwage (also from The Princess Bride).  Everyone in attendance - at least the ones who'd seen TPB - laughed and clapped.  It was a wonderful start to a touching, funny, loving ceremony.

They were spending their first night in a little hotel about 100 feet from the wedding/reception venue, so a limo seemed absurd and yet walking didn't seem grand enough.  They decided to leave on a bicycle built for two, instead (this picture was taken before the ceremony - Kendra was actually wearing shorts when they biked away and there were BIG, giant balloons attached to the bike before they left as well.  It was very cool.  Everyone loved it!).  And because they chose to get married on a weekend when Wilmington holds a big street fair downtown, they left the reception to a huge fireworks display! Fun!


A happy Mom was I.  Kendra the bride on the left and her sister and bridesmaid, Schyler, on the right.  This picture never fails to make me feel happy and so very, very blessed.  These are the loves of my life.
It was a beautiful wedding.  I couldn't be happier, and they couldn't be either.  I asked Kendra afterwards what was her favorite part and she said that she loved everything, but her favorite was at the end of the reception when the DJ called last dance (which was another little surprise for them - the DJ and I chose "Wagon Wheel" by The Old Crow Medicine Show, which is a BIG FAVORITE around these parts), everyone circled around them and danced and sang along while they danced in the middle.  Everyone cried happy tears and Kendra said she felt "very loved by everyone there, and like they were a huge part of the happiest day of my life."  Does it get better than that?

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Heaven on Earth

I was in California not too long ago, visiting my Mom.  One afternoon, the day before I left to return home, I had to go into Laguna Beach for something.  I parked on PCH (Pacific Coast Highway) in the only parking spot I could find, which turned out to be right in front of this place:
Madison Square & Garden Center
A Cafe and Garden Shop



Unfortunately, it was a Tuesday.  The ONLY DAY OF THE WEEK THEY ARE CLOSED.  Really?  Tuesday? I was returning home the next day so I never had a chance to go back.  But I will.  Oh, I will.
Oh - and Happy Valentines Day!

Monday, February 11, 2013

I'm in your pocket...

Seriously.  I like February.  It's my birthday month and I'm one of those (apparently) odd people who likes to celebrate my birthday.  Even as I get older and sometimes would like to forget how many birthdays I've had, I find my birthday to be a time to reflect on and celebrate how incredibly wonderful a life I've had and how much I have to look forward to. Sounds kind of corny, I know.  But all true.

This February I've had an additional thing to look forward to:

It's a drawing of John Lennon  and Yoko Ono, with the lyrics from the song "Yes, I'm Your Angel" that say "I'm in your pocket, you're in my locket"

This is the February page from a calendar that my youngest lovey gave me at Christmas.  It has a separate page for each month, with a drawing of a Rock-n-Roll icon, along with lyrics to one of his or her songs.  February has John Lennon - one of my personal heros. Seems somehow fitting.

I love this calendar so much that I really wanted to highlight it in my kitchen.  It has to be changed out each month, so I didn't want to frame it under glass or anything that would be a pain or too time consuming. I finally decided to just paint a frame right on the wall and hang the calendar page with big, round thumbtacks.  I love how it turned out and it's really easy to change out.  What do you think?

Of course, come next year I will have to find another calendar the exact same size!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Thelma grows up. And up. And UP. Oh. She is huge.

As promised in the title, I do have some pictures of Thelma. And as promised in the title, She. Is. Huge. But first I feel like I have some 'splaining to do.  It's been over two months since I last posted (and that sentence brought back memories of going to Saturday afternoon confession at the Catholic church when I was a kid. "father it has been one week since my last confession..." but, thats a whole 'nother story).  I've been busy, sure.  Who isn't, right? I'm not that busy.  And some things have happened (the holidays, my oldest lovey got engaged, my oldest lovey moved to Austin to be with her sweetheart, lots of other things!) that I could've posted about.  But I just didn't feel like it. That is my only excuse and it will just have to do, I guess.  I've tried to read all of my "regular" blogs on a daily basis and I've sometimes posted comments, so you all know I'm still around, right? And you all have carried on beautifully!!

But now, with no further ado, I present Thelma at eight months old:

She is asleep.  She sleeps like this all the time, usually in the middle of the room.

We got her spayed at about 5 months old (in the hopes of finding her a home - hahaha!) and she immediately started gaining weight and has not stopped. Thankfully she is spayed or I would think she is pregnant.  She is now as tall as Jack, and I suspect she weighs more than he does (15 or so pounds, maybe?).  She is bigger than Louise now (and I'm pretty sure she is not done yet). Louise still wants nothing to do with her, but Thelma keeps trying.  Every day.

Remember when she looked like this?

Yeah, me too.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012


Fall started out beautifully.  It stayed warm well into October and the trees all started their magical transformations into explosions of color.  Then Sandy passed by and brought...winter. Cold nights and mornings and lots of rain, so that we only got to enjoy the beautiful leaves for a short time before the rain and wind tore most of them from the branches and left them on the ground. And the acorns! Millions - maybe billions - of them everywhere.  I've been told that the older, wiser, locals say that lots of acorns in the fall mean a cold winter.  *Sigh* I'm glad I got a new pair of boots!

We'll be enjoying Thanksgiving a new way this year.  Both girls work in retail, so both have only the one day - Thursday - off (and the way things seem to be going, next year they might not even get that.  People: don't shop on Thanksgiving Day!).  That means the one in Brooklyn can't come home at all.  The other one is in Raleigh, 2 hours away, and since we have four days off and she only has the one, we decided to go to Raleigh for Thanksgiving, and go out for dinner.  This will be a new experience for all of us.  While I will miss the cooking, (honestly! I love cooking Thanksgiving dinner) I am so profoundly grateful that I have so much good and happiness in my life, starting with two beautiful daughters and a bf who cherishes me and I him. And I can't forget Jack, Louise, Thelma, and my wonderful family in California (all of whom I miss more than usual on the holidays).  

I wish you all good cheer and I hope the holidays find you happy and healthy.