Monday, February 28, 2011

Chapter 1...

I'm going to write a book. It will be a labor of love. It will be about my dad.

He told me he wanted to write a book about his life, that someone out there might be interested in it. I excitedly offered to help him as I have always wanted to write a book and he was so happy, he wanted me to help.

Two days after he asked me to help him write a book, he ended up in ICU. I kept telling him he needed to get better, we had a book to write. The day we said goodbye to him, I told him I was going to write his book. And I will.

His life story is an amazing one. In a wheelchair for almost 56 years, married for 43 years, father of 4, grandfather to 3. He was an inspiration to anyone who met him and I have almost 39 years of memories made with him. I will write about how hard he worked to support his family, how he never gave up, and would never take no for an answer. I will write about the many places he lived, and the stories he passed on to me. I will also write about how my mom dedicated her life to him and was a huge part of him living so long and getting so far in life. I will write it with a heart full of love and it will be dedicated to my dad.


Saturday, February 26, 2011

Little Boy Blue

Anyone who knows me, knows about Blue. He is so darn cute, I just have to talk about him and post pictures of him. Fun facts about Blue:

  • Blue is a Red Merle Miniature Australian Shepherd.
  • Blue's birthday is Jan. 15, 2010.
  • We named him Blue because he has one blue eye.
  • Nicknames include Little Boy Blue, Snuggle Boy, Blucifer, Mr. Saucy Pants, and Buddy - all can be used in one day depending on what kind of trouble he's getting into or if he's being a little lover.
  • He weighs approx. 27 pounds.
  • He is HIGH energy and loves to run and play.
  • He loves to go for car rides.
  • He is my walking buddy - he will walk and walk with me, mile after mile. He also loves to run, but that needs practice.
  • He has a baby face when he's tired. His ears go back and he just looks so sweet and innocent.
  • Around 8:30 everynight, he gets tired and will lay on the the sofa and fall asleep. This is when he turns into Snuggle Boy.
  • He likes to sleep on the pillow above my head at night. Mike says it looks like I'm wearing a hat.
  • Blue loves to go to Starbucks. They give him treats there.
  • I love how it looks like he's laughing and smiling when he's super happy.
  • He loves to learn new - he craves it, in fact. Teach him something new and he'll pick it up super fast.
  • He loves to go to the park and he loves to play with other dogs.
  • He is my little boy and he is incredibly spoiled. He is our only child.
I could probably go on and on... Here are 2 pictures I took today...


Thursday, February 24, 2011

"I'll be there for you..."

Man I miss F*R*I*E*N*D*S. being on. Sure, I can watch it anytime I want since I have all 10 seasons on DVD, but I miss it being on Thursday night. There was excitement leading up to Thursday night TV, knowing that all 6 of my friends would be in my living room. You know what I mean... I loved them all and can't imagine the show without any one of them. Monica, who clearly I am most like given my need to be in total control, was great. I loved her little quirks. Rachel, who I always strived to be. Great hair and all, she had to be my most favorite as far as her character. Phoebe, well, she was classic - who didn't love her blond-ness and her always catchy "Smelly Cat".

If I had to pick a least favorite, it would have been Ross. But I loved his character and the chemistry between him and Rachel. Chandler was so fantastic, I just loved his sarcasm. And Joey, well he was just plain funny. "How you doin'?" hehehe....

Dare I pick a favorite episode?? I would probably have a different answer each day someone asked me this, but right now I would say the one where Monica proposed to Chandler, "The One With The Proposal". Could it have been any better?!

They were great as individual characters and even better as the six of them together. I miss that show. Might have to pull out those DVDs again soon....

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Tough questions from a 3-year old...

On Sunday, we went to my mom's to help her out for a bit. Preparing for a yard sale,getting stuff together for that, and such. Autumn, my super adorable niece was there when we arrived, returning from a walk around the neighborhood with Grandmommy. My mom told me that when she arrived that morning, she said "Pop Pops doesn't live here anymore?". She had not been to my mom's in awhile and walking in she could see that my dad's desk was not in it's usual spot. Such a precocious little girl. Later on, I was out in the garage and she followed me out and she pointed to my dad's wheelchair. She said to me, "Is that Pop Pops thing?" I said yes it is, it's his wheelchair. She then told me he didn't need it anymore. "No honey, he doesn't", I said to her. She then said he doesn't need it because he's in heaven. That's right, he doesn't need it in heaven.

<sigh> Such a smart little girl she is, very tuned-in to things happening around her. She knows Pop Pops was sick in the hospital and afterwards, she knows we went to the beach to throw roses in the water for him. A couple weeks ago we went to the beach to watch the sunset, my mom, Autumn, and I. On our way there, I told her we were going to the beach and she asked if we were going to throw roses in the water again. My heart just swelled.

I am glad that Autumn knew who Pop Pops was and will hopefully remember the memories she has of him as she gets older. There are adorable photos of the two of them, even more special now. And there will always be reminders of him around.

It is sad that my dad will not see Autumn grow up, or Cooper and Cole. He knew and loved Cooper, always had a smile to match the smile on Cooper's face. He did not get to meet Cole, born the day before my dad was rushed back to the hospital, two weeks before he passed away. But he did see a photo of him on the cell phone and smiled so I am confident that he knew who he was and loved him.

One thing is for sure, Pop Pops will always be looking down on Autumn, and Cooper and Cole, just as he is the rest of us. I sure wish he was here with us, but since he can't be, I take comfort in knowing he is looking down on us and will be a part of us wherever we go.

I love and miss you very much, Daddy....

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

My odd little quirks...

It has occured to me as of late that I have some odd little quirks. Well, I've always known that I've had them and that they're odd, and that in turn makes me odd. But I decided that I should share some of them, just to bring someone some laughter on a Tuesday, or even to make someone feel better that you don't have the little quirks that I do. Here goes...

  • I have to make the bed every morning. I cannot leave my house with making the bed. In fact, it happens between drying my hair and using the flat iron - always.
  • Everyone knows how much I love Starbucks... Hot or cold, I am always up for one. If it's a hot drink, though, it must be what I like to call OCD-compliant. The drinking hole in the lid must be in perfect alignment with the logo on the cup and the sleeve. The holiday cups can make this tricky since they aren't always as simple. I cannot drink it until it is OCD-compliant. And my husband (love you honey) knows to make it OCD-compliant should he get one for me.
  • While we're talking about OCD, I absolutely am. I don't count or wash my hands a bazillion times, but I have issues being the one to lock the door when I leave the house. This poses a problem Monday - Friday when I am the last to leave the house. I will check it and re-check it. If I am rushed or distracted when I leave, I will drive back to make sure it's locked. Just for the record, I'd like to state that never once have I gone back to check in a moment of panic to find it unlocked. It's ALWAYS locked.
  • I try to not drink soda too much (need to get back to that now) but there are certain foods I have to have soda with... Pizza, tacos, and popcorn. Water or ice tea or whatever will not suffice. It has to be soda.
  • Speaking of popcorn, when I go to the movies, I have to have Nestle Bunch A Crunch with my popcorn. I eat them together. I can't do just popcorn and I can't do just Nestle Bunch A Crunch, no that won't work. I have to have them together.
  • If I find a shirt that I like, I will buy it in multiple colors which seems odd because my most favorite color shirt to wear is black. You know, it's the most slimming color.
  • I am obsessed with my iPhone - this really isn't a quirk, I just wanted to state the obvious.
  • Not new to anyone who knows me, but I cannot stand American cheese. It offends me. It is the most disgusting thing ever. It's not real. And even worse, white American cheese. OMG.
Be thankful you aren't me. Happy Tuesday!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

per·se·ver·ance

per·se·ver·ance
noun  - steady persistence in a course of action, a purpose, a state, etc., especially in spite of difficulties, obstacles, or discouragement.
 
When my dad went into the hospital on Monday November 8th of last year, work came to almost a stand still. Being self-employed certainly has it's perks in that I could be at the hospital as much as I needed to during that time. But it also meant no one else could do the work for me. I struggled with what wasn't getting done when I was at the hospital and if I was at work, I struggled with the fact that I wasn't at the hospital where I needed to be. I did what was needed to get us by over those 4 weeks, also doing as much for my mom as I could. But each day, we got a little farther behind. The days leading up to my dad's passing had me thinking very much about how much things would change for the business and how ultimately, it would be me making those changes. Over the last couple years he had really left things up to me to run - and I know he was proud of me because he told me so. But the comfort of having him there if there was a problem I couldn't solve or needed his creativity or whatever may be.... Well, that's been a hard adjustment. After he passed, despite our pain and sadness, life had to go on. Things had to be done. I made a very long list of things we needed to do to get caught up. Jobs that had fallen behind, paperwork that needed to be done, on and on. I've checked things off as they've been done. And this past week, 2 months and 2 weeks later, we are caught up. My mom and I managed to get through the long list one item at a time. That is perseverance... And I know he is looking down on us and smiling, knowing that as always, we did what we had to do just like he would.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

My new love...

They are so clean and pretty. Perfection in a box. They will bring me hours of happiness. They will push me farther than I plan to go. They will travel miles and miles with me. They will sit waiting for me, ready to go whenever I am. Sure, they may seem like just a pair of shoes. But they are so much more than that. They will make me walk better and stronger. They will make me run farther and faster. Remember trying shoes on when you were a kid and how they could make you jump higher? And how wonderful it was to wear your new shoes out of the store? There is excitement in new shoes, so much potential. It seems so simple, a pair of new shoes. But these shoes are so much more than that. They are freedom, health, joy, happiness, and they mean time for ME. They are my new Brooks Adrenaline GTS running shoes.

Monday, February 14, 2011

The first of many...

On Friday, I thought "I need to remind Daddy that Monday is Valentines Day". Habits are certainly hard to break. I have always been Daddy's little reminder of birthdays and anniversaries. When I realized that I would never need to be that reminder anymore, it made me sad. There are going to be so many firsts this first year that he is gone. We went through the motions of Christmas without him, his favorite holiday of the year, still so fresh from having lost him just weeks before. Then my birthday. And now Valentines Day. His birthday will be a hard one but we will celebrate him. We will have a whole year of firsts, the biggest one of all being the anniversary of when he went into the hospital, and then the day we said goodbye. People tell me that I will never get over my dad being gone, rather I will just get more used to it and learn to live with the fact that he is not here. Almost three months have passed and it is still so incredibly surreal that he is not here. So maybe, I'll just remind him anyway when a birthday or anniversary comes along. That will make me feel a little better, right?  Daddy, don't forget today is Valentines Day so you can send a little extra love our way from up above. We are all missing you...

Sunday, February 13, 2011

How lucky are we?




We have a beautiful park right up the street - Eagle Lake Park. It's been open almost a year now and I can't tell you how many times I've been there with Blue, my little walking buddy. There are all these little lakes and trails and I could spend hours there. Today I walked from our house to the south end of the park and back - total of 3.45 miles. We were stopped several times by people who just had to ooh and ahh over Blue. He is such a little ham and eats up all the attention he gets. I am trying to get back into running and I know he will make a great running companion. He is easily distracted at times, but I think with some practice he will run right along side of me and we'll both get the exercise we need. One thing for sure, we have the prettiest park to walk at, right here...

Saturday, February 12, 2011

My very first blog

So it begins. Someone out there may be interested in what I have to say, right? Right. I enjoy reading blogs and I thought maybe I would enjoy writing one. So, here I go. There is no telling what I'll blog about - it could be about me, my honey, my adorable mini-aussie, a fave beer or wine I'm drinking, or a great run, walk, or workout. It could also be about a wonderful book I'm reading, my love of scrapbooking, my big crazy family, or my excitement over a drink from Starbucks. It could be about anything!