Thursday, November 28, 2013


age 2:  mom with two little blondies working hard to support herself-my sister-me.  with little college education, a single mom in the 60s was certainly not the norm and daily life was challenging, especially with no help, financial or otherwise, from my father.  but we were a family & this was my first lesson in learning families can do hard things-together.

age 23:  married pjm & his two daughters, ages 7 & 9.  i had no parenting experience except for those high school babysitting jobs, which i love, but was of no help when it came to assisting in the daily life of two young girls struggling to accept the divorce of their parents & learning to travel back and forth between two homes.  but we struggled & learned & loved our way into a family.

age 25 & 28:  our babies arrive.  the first while i am in graduate school.  imperfect timing to a perfect baby girl. she gave us all a commonality, a bond that defined us as a family, sharing the same dad, and me learning the ropes as a mom in the midst of it.  followed by pjm's junior just under three years later.  it felt complete with a boy to finish off our pact.  his two+our two=the remix of an all-american family

age 39:  a desire placed on our hearts' as parents to welcome one sweet brown eyed boy.  he joins our family at the ripe old age of 7 1/2 weeks, never knowing life before us.  at 39, i embraced the new mommy role all over again {sans baby weight to lose!}. he challenged my skill set with by his strong personality & boundless energy.  but he was ours, and the miracle of his journey into our family can still make me teary.  there is some God magic in seeing him navigate life with such ease, boasting about his curly hair and tawny brown skin, knowing we are envious of his handsome charm.  an athletic wonder, entrusted to this mom who lacked confidence & physical ability on the playground & any given sports field growing up.  our clan: a band of blonds with the most handsome of sweet brown.

age almost 50:  two little boys with love-hugs-giggles and beckon me with a "nana" and sweet brown eyes with an "uncle j".  not an ounce of biology shared by the four of us, but so much love connecting us as a multi-generational brood.  it's that love that binds us & defines family.  a step daughter in the midst of losing her amazing dad, continues to honor his love & legacy as a family man by embracing his wife woman and her children, bonding us together as a family who again learns to do hard things.

dear am & scoot.
thanks{giving} for embracing the fact we are separated {again} for thanksgiving.
your grace in our absence is nothing short of praiseworthy.
see you friday eve for our t-town thanksgiving.

dear sweet brown eyes.
not sure where you earned the awesome skills you hone with each visit,
but there are two boys that know uncle j rocks.
making puzzles-powering their race cars-chosing the bottom of the constant boy "dog pile".
reading books-playing popcorn on the trampoline-sharing chocolate milk.
thanks{giving} for love & energy that know no bounds.

dear florida family.
thanks{giving} for hosting us again!
yes, we are down a "player" this year but we tore up the course at the destin track.
the man-date to buddy's in alabama, complete with off road racing & chicken strips for lunch.
you continue to teach me family has nothing to do with biology,
but love-legacy-and honoring a man who was all about family.
nana chris

dear God.
You continue to instruct me on the many ways to make a family.
some conventional & others a deep desire to stay connected in loss.
thanks{giving} for biological children-step children-adopted children.
regardless of how this clan is banded together, we are family.

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