Sunday, January 1, 2012

Hello 2012

Here I am up watching the clock tick past midnight. The last 365 days have gone by in what feels like supersonic speed and there is not a darn thing I can do to slow down time.

This afternoon I saw a friend whose first born I always referred to with the word "baby" in front of her name - that baby is now four. Drew had his 15th birthday a week ago. Time is forging ahead whether I am ready or not.

Sleep is not coming easily tonight. Not because of the periodic fireworks going on outside or the fact that I spent New Years Eve watching Pride and Predjuce again but because my vigilent mind won't let 2011 go.

Some of the thoughts replaying in my mind are...

I am counting on living to double my current age in order to enjoy and perfect the lessons I am still learning.

I am not where I thought I would be at this point in my life. I try not to judge that statement but just know that my life is different than what I thought it would look like.

I am, once again, sorting out and getting rid of stuff. Some stuff I look at and wish I'd never bought, some has outlived it original intented purpose and some is just used up. It is tiresome to be doing it again and so I am optimistic that I will be wiser.

I am examining ideas, concepts and beliefs I thought were at the core of who I am and didn't think I would ever question.

I am cognizant of the impact of others words and actions. I get teary eyed a lot more often which I usually blame on hormones but maybe I am just more sensitive.

I am not sure I want to write down my goals and resolutions for the new year. A frightening and freeing thought at the same time for a person who has always loved New Years Resolutions. Instead I think I will write down the words of William Arthur Ward.

Do more than belong: participate.
Do more than care: help.
Do more than believe: practice.
Do more than be fair: be kind.
Do more than forgive: forget.
Do more than dream: work.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Dude, It's Friday. Let's Celebrate

I have said it before, but I didn’t realize just how important celebrating in life is to me. Clearly, it is big because when one of the other moms who we carpool with said that she would be able to pick up the boys this week, my heart skipped a beat when I realized she meant Friday too.

You see, 4 weeks ago when we completed the first week of school I decided to take the boys for a “survived the first week of school celebration Jamba Juice”. The next week, I told the boys not to always expect this but today we would go get a DQ Blizzard. Third week seemed like a good time for Starbucks. We haven’t done this long enough to become loyal to anyone of the many treat options in our hood. And although I don’t want them to expect this every week I pretty much know it will happen every week unless I have a hot date and need to use the funds to go towards an emergency mani/pedi. In other words, maybe they can’t take it to the bank, but they can be assured if it is Friday, we are celebrating.

So the dilemma is, do I…
1.     Be extremely selfish and tell the other mom she can’t take the boys?
2.     Find someone else to celebrate Friday with?
3.     Go alone?
4.     Learn to share?

I have to say number 3 is my least favorite. Oh sure I love doing things alone but part of the fun in taking the boys is spending time with them, asking them annoyingly probing questions like  “so, what was the best part of your day?” And if they say “lunch”, I probe further and ask “why” or really make it tough and say “no something you get a grade in.” You know the stuff of a good snoopy mom. If I am lucky it leads to them talking about the good and bad of the day, giving me a clue of what life is like for a freshman in high school these days. But it is also fun to eavesdrop on their conversations. Listening to their responses when a cool car goes by. Oh and my favorite conversation goes something like this - “dude, did you see that”? And then another says “no way dude that is awesome.” And then the third chimes in with “dude”. What’s not to like about hearing a whole dude conversation. Must tell you there is nothing quite so riveting on a Friday afternoon as freshman boy conversation. They make me laugh.

Someday soon these boys will be driving and not need us moms to haul them to school, movies or anywhere else. Now they have to hang out with their mom if they want something but soon they will be working and can afford their own Starbucks, Jamba Juice or DQ. My opportunity to eavesdrop on their conversations will be limited and I’ll have to be sneakier. These boys are growing up. They are good kids. Am I trying to hold on? No I think I just want to keep my eyes and ears open to hear what they are and are not saying.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Pardon me, I am purging

I shouldn't be surprised. This happens every time I leave my parents house after a visit. I feel inspired. It seems to be a time to reconnoiter. It used to be when we would drive to Kansas at Christmas, I would use the drive home to make lists and contemplate ideas of what I would incorporate into our daily lives or refine goals or make plans as we would embark on a new year. Now that we don't make an annual drive, but usually fly instead, I have short changed myself on the full benefit of a visit home. I can't explain it. It just kind of magical. After the less than punctual trip home, but filled with plenty of windows of opportunity to make lists and contemplate ideas, I am ready to take action.

On Thursday, I told Drew that I wanted him to start cleaning up his room. As I believe I mentioned before, the whole house became wedding central and has not fully recovered. Even Drew's room, although no wedding stuff would be found there, is a mess. I told him to start with one thing at a time and it might be good to start with his guns. He has quite a collection of Nerf guns, some as they came from the factory and some that he has modified, or as we call it "modded". When a gun is modded, there are always leftover parts. Sometimes it doesn't even resemble a gun but a bone yard of forgotten plastic and metal pieces. My suggestion was to bring out of his room all guns, pieces, parts, usable and non-usable components to any kind of gun. See his creativity also lends itself to making pvc pipe guns, marshmallow guns, rubber band guns and thow in a water gun or two or three..., there is quite a collection.

Mid-day, I check in. Drew tells me that he thinks this job is too hard for a 14 year old. I did what any mother vying for MOY (mother of the year) and reminded him that there are children all over who are working and contributing to the survival or at least betterment of their households. With that, he decided he could take on this project.

I arrive home and there are approximately 10 guns across my bed (I thought that would be a good place for him to assess what he has and what he is ready to get rid of). When asked about the modified guns and parts, he gave me a look and something snapped in my brain. I realize that we clearly speak 2 different languages but somehow he responded that morning in a way that I thought he understood and that this was a big deal. Clearly, that was not the case. That my friends is when this mama snapped. I realize I created this problem. Afterall, it was probably me who purchased most of the stuff, including these guns, which is in his room. So I decided to take action. I gave Drew the option to stay and help but he chose not to. Which led me to stating my disclaimer "if I don't know it has meaning, importance or a specific use, out it goes."

What was started on Thursday evening will be finished this weekend. Armed with the most important tool I have seen on HGTV for ridding out unwanted stuff - a box of big black trash bags, I am tackling Drew's room and as much of the house as I have energy for this weekend. The word for the weekend is PURGE (def: to rid, clear).

Another word could be START (def: to begin or set out, as on a journey or activity). Drew is starting high school. I think it is good to clean out the old as he embarks on this new chapter. This is also the first step in the goals and plans I set for myself on my trip home from Kansas. I need to make room, not for more things and stuff, but for more living, more simplified, purposeful living. I'll let you know how it goes.

PS: I told Drew I was telling this story and he was thrilled (as any 14 year old boy would be) but gave me his blessing to post, albeit in a sarcastic tone. I wonder where he learned to be sarcastic?

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

All Aboard

It seems there are a lot of people it seems have a love affair with the thought of riding a train. Whether it is the romantic view we have of a glamorous era when train travel was the fastest, cleanest and easiest mode of transportation across America. Or to relax and leave the driving to someone else. Or as one of the Amtrak slogans reads "For the America you can't see anywhere else". Or just to experience something new. Whatever the reason a lot of people are saying "All aboard Amrak". And that is what Drew and I did.
The front of our train from my window

Love this station.

Cool building we saw along the way.

Each year Drew drives back to Kansas when his grandparents return from wintering in Arizona. I usually fly back, spend a week visiting before Drew and I return to Arizona. This year we decided to board the Southwest Chief and leave the driving to someone else. Drew and the G-unit had done it once before which was fortunate for us as we learned from their trip.

Now this little adventure did not happen without a hiccup or two. First our train was scheduled to leave Topeka station at 12:29 AM. Instead we left around 3:00 AM. Along the way we had to stop a couple times for traffic to clear off the rail. Then we had to stop because the track switching mechanism was broke. For those who don't know what that is or does here is a little tutorial. So we waiting while the engineers came and fixed. It must be a really big deal because when we finally got going and could see where the people who had come to fix it parked, there were 14 vehicles. Finally we were on our way. By now our arrival would be really late but we were at least moving in the right direction.

Some observations I noted.
  • It may not prove to be the cheapest, fastest or cleanest but it is highly entertaining and enjoyable.
  • As with all public transportation, we met some nice people along the way and some not so nice. Luckily you can choose how much interaction you wish you engage in.
  • Our conductor had a sense of humor. I would think that would be a must in dealing with, shall we say "interesting" individuals and mechanical issues.
  • Thankful we had a blanket and pillow. Although we didn't sleep much, grandma had warned us it can be quite chilly, and the blanket and pillow made the trip more comfortable.
  • Junk food and snacks were a useful staple. Although there is a dining car for meals if you choose to reserve your space and a snack bar, it was nice to have our package of Topsy's popcorn, squirt cheese in a can and Wheat Thins, and Twizzlers. Nothing like a little comfort food during uncertain times.
  • Great place to people watch. Now according to Drew, I stayed in my seat "all the time". But I enjoyed watching the scenery and the steady stream of people walking by kept me entertained. Drew on the other hand spent time in the observation car and by the snack bar meeting people and making friends.
  • Be prepared for the unexpected. We had made arrangements for Allison and Jon to come and pick us up in Flagstaff (which is where we needed to get off unless we wanted to go to California) and drive us to Phoenix. Perfect plan if we would have arrived on time. Since we didn't arrive until 2:30 AM we made other plans. 
  • Appreciated cell phone reception. Although some trains also have WiFi, I was perfectly content just having phone service. With the help of Allison I was able to call and reserve a room at the lovely Little America Hotel and a cab to get us there. I decided after being on the train for 24 hours I wasn't taking a risk on an unknown hotel no matter what the cost. I have stayed at Little America and knew it would be clean and comfortable even if it was only for 8 hours. I also was able to keep in contact with family and give updates along the way. What did we do before cell phones?
So although it wasn't the smooth sailing, zippy trip I had envisioned, I would definitely do it again.

Amtrak MSTS Commercial (Southwest Chief)

Saturday, July 2, 2011

A Year From Now...

If I stay up a little longer it will be my birthday. So I decided it would be a great time for a bit of reflection.

As they say "you are not getting any younger, you know".

A few weeks back I saw this posted.

I now have it by my desk at work. It is a reminder of all the things I wanted to do over the past year and an encouragement to get hopping on the things I want to do. First and foremost I remember the things I didn't complete and sometimes have trouble remembering all that I did accomplish.

Rarely does life go as planned but it is rarer still to actually go in the direction of your choice without a plan. Every morning, even on the laziest of mornings I wake with a plan. Something to accomplish in 16 hours (give or take) that I am awake and functioning. By the time I crawl into bed, most nights, I haven't fulfilled all that I intended. There are those coulda, shoulda and woulda's hanging around haunting me. I know people who seem to be able to do the work of a small army on any given task. That isn't me and frankly I don't know how they do it. I would put my mom in that category. I have witnessed her in action over the years and she could work circles around me.Thank goodness she is giving herself permission to slow down.

I am not sure I am ready to post my list of things that are on my task list for this next year. Probably because some of them are just down right stupid and embarrasing and I have no reason why I haven't done them yet. For example, last summer we had a plumbing issue in the upstairs hall bathroom. Thanks to gravity, the water leaked down stairs which led us to originally think that that the problem was caused by the condensation from the A/C unit running along the lines of the duct work. So the plumber cut a whole in the ceiling where the water was dripping. Thanks to his thorough sluething, the source of the water was found and fixed. Then the drywaller came and patched the ceiling, sprayed the texture and told me I could paint when ever I wanted to. As you can probably guess, no paint has been applied. It isn't that I haven't wanted to, it is just that I just haven't done it.

There has been plenty of activity over the past 365 days. And although I am not sure there is much that could top this year, I am predicting the next to be a very good year. I will continue to make my To Do lists and I'll feel very accomplished when at the end of the day everything has been crossed off. But there will be days when nothing is crossed off and I am going to give myself some grace on those days. Grace because something called life is happening and I am living it.

Happy Birthday to me. I am delighted to have enjoyed another year and inspired to live this next year in the very best possible way.

Monday, June 27, 2011


Lest this post become too sappy, I will title it Mudderhood. And while some might think this is about the national and time-honored holiday knows as Mother’s Day with a speech impediment, let me assure you it is not about moms. It is about my need to share and impart a little melodrama, should I say, with friends, family and anyone who might stumble upon my written words. Just because the characters are my children, it could apply to anyone. So here it goes.

·      Allison got married. The wedding was lovely, a glorious day and fun was had by all (or at least those that I know and care whether they had fun or not). Allison was happy. Jon was happy. Heck, I was happy.

·      Soon after the wedding, Drew left to go on the annual drive back to Kansas with Grandpa and Grandma who we affectionately refer to as the G-Unit. This has taken place around this time of year for at least the past 7 years now. The threat of him not being able to do this is what jolted him into actually doing and turning in his schoolwork.

·      After Allison and Jon returned from their honeymoon, they came and took Precious who is Allison’s cat, to their home. Not a huge impact but a change all the same.

More entertaining world viewed upside down
The sum of this equals just Kiva and me at home with lots of time on our hands and paws. Oh sure there are many, many, many things I could and should probably do. I could go wild cleaning out Drew’s room (he is rather attached to everything he has ever had or made). Make Allison’s old room into the most gorgeous office/guest/library/craft room imaginable. And I have done some sorting, tidying and rearranging. I have enjoyed the flexibility of schedule and have used this time to socialize with friends or just lay on the couch without a second thought.

I fully admit I am a sentimental sap. I cry freely. I laugh unreservedly. I feel frustrated, angry, happy, giddy, melancholy – with me, there is no shortage of emotions or feelings. Emotions are muddy. Sometimes the why and what of them are unclear and confusing. Pinpointing a feeling can be like swimming through mud.

Since Allison declared her love and intention to live the rest of her life with Jon I have worked to face my emotions. I am about as happy as a pig in mud that my darling daughter and son-in-law are enjoying life together. But the key there is that Allison is still my darling daughter and always will be. I love being a part of my children’s lives and am thankful that I enjoy them and they seem to enjoy me. I find great joy in sharing in these delightful individuals lives and now have added another individual to delight in sharing life with.

And so I am happy to report that I am showing restraint and am not calling or texting Allison all the time like I want to and I used to. Have not popped in on the newlyweds uninvited. I relish hearing about their plans, what they did and what they are doing but have not invited myself to participate. I fancy in hearing about the projects they are working on and can’t wait to see them.  I am not pining away alone either. I am as busy as I want to be and feeling quite content.

So to sum it all up in a pretty package, I saw this adorable “emotional wall art” which I will be ordering from I figured out that like it or not, I carry the hearts of the people I love, whether I birthed them or not, in my heart - forever.

Monday, June 6, 2011

B E A Utiful Wedding

Do you remember the line from the movie Bruce Almighty when Jim Carey’s character spells beautiful out saying, B E A Utiful? It is catchy and I find myself saying it too. And like the character Bruce Nolan I too might use it sarcastically or complimentary. But not this time.
Allison and Jon got married on Saturday and let me tell you it was B E A Utiful in only the most lovely, worthy and pleasant way. I’ll take a moment to do a little debriefing, so to speak and give you a glimps into our little wedding world.

Allison and Jon became engaged in January 2011. (read more The Proposal ) Of course as the MoB I thought a June wedding was just too soon. (more on the MoB in a previous post) But alas, the newly engage couple planned, calculated and timed it all out and June 4, 2011 was selected. Second decision made was to enlist the help of a dear friend who is a wedding planner. (read more Ode to the Wedding Planner)

It was determined that the preferred location to have their ceremony and reception was outside. Allison has always loved the back yard of the home of some friends of ours. Jon and Allison went and looked at it and our friends graciously agreed to lend the use of their piece of paradise which made for a very happy bride. I think you will agree it is B E A Utiful.

Then came the wedding dress shopping, selecting bridesmaids, groomsmen, their clothes, flower girls and clothes, theme, color, food, drink, guest list, décor, rental choices, bouquet choices, and on and on and not necessarily in that order. Some decisions were made quick and easy and some not so much. But we were off and running.

The lovely bride decided that she and her bridesmaids would carry bouquets made of brooches and other jewelry. I set to the task of finding the brooches and find them I did. Goodwill, Etsy, Ebay, Salvation Army, host of other thrift stores and family and friends made the B E A Utiful bouquets possible. I became addicted to buying brooches, earrings and buttons. I made myself stop looking for them because I loved them all. As I would show a new one to Allison and tell her that “this one is my favorite”. Finally she told me that I say that about just about all of them. I tried to keep a limit on how much I would spend per item but that too was ordained by how much I loved it. It was so much fun to pick out specific items for one of the bridesmaids or another. 

Love these little Jelly Belly Bride and Groom Brooches

Some of my many favorites.

There had to be an owl in Allison's bouquet.

But as you know, we are bona fide crafting adventurers and no project was deemed too difficult. No Goodwill store too far away to find the perfect vase or frame. No amount of cutting, painting, glueing, stringing or wiring was out of reach. Sharing the fun with her friends at a craft night putting together the pinwheels for the table decor out of a 1969 Marriage Counseling book brought laughter around the table that evening.

Maid of Honor Stephanie modeling a fine looking pinwheel

Don't mess with a bride and her glue gun.

Elizabeth - serious pinwheel maker.

So now it is the Monday after the Saturday wedding. It was an absolute delight working with Allison on all the projects as we embarked to make the vision she had in her head a reality. The laughter and joking, the blood, sweat and tears (okay that is a bit exaggerated) but maybe a little scratch and bruising on occasion. I treasure our family, friends, co-workers, associates, store clerks and any other random person who was supportive, helpful, interested, engaged or trapped into listening to me talk about the latest adventure.

The lights have all been taken down. The dance floor empty and rental company has arrived to picked up the chairs, tables, plates, and all the other things we didn’t already own, beg, borrow or buy. The food consumed, the beverages guzzled (not really but it sounds good). From all indications it appears that all enjoyed an evening of laughter, reminiscent chatter, getting acquainted with Allison and Jon’s friends.

It was truly the most B E A Utiful event I could ever hope to be a part of and I will cherish the memories that were collected along the way like precious jewels.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Ode to the Wedding Planner

At an unimposing 5’ tall, she is a mighty force to be reckoned with. Trained with the best - her other job is a 1st grade teacher and has been for the past 33 years. Has an eye for detail that is unequalled. And an all together lovely person.

Let me give some specifics. If you Google “A force to be reckoned with” you will get an answer that states “someone or something that is important and powerful and must not be ignored”. That someone is our friend and wedding planner. I’ll call her Rosey, because…well, that is her name. She has been affectionately dubbed “General Rosey” because if you don’t know what your doing, she will command and lead you forward. She has a great sense of humor and an amazing memory and those two qualities together make for some fun times. She is quick witted and sharp and can assess a situation and make a decision that is spot on. Things just work with her. And if they weren’t destined to work, she makes them work.

Second, I can think of no finer trainer for a person who deals with multiple personalities, multiple maturity levels, multiple diva’s (although not with our wedding) and dudes, than someone who has been teaching 1st graders for 33 years. Am I the only one who doesn’t see a big difference between a wedding party and 1st graders? But also she was born into a family who loved to share their gift of hospitality and entertain friends. It is in her DNA. Luckily she married someone who has the same love of hospitality or she trained him really well. Because they are a perfect match.
One of the first parties Rosey and I worked together on was Allison’s Sweet 16 Party. And let me tell you it was a splendiferous affair. I knew right then and there that we would be doing more shindigs and soirees together. Having gone to the same church and both loving to throw a great party, we have enjoyed putting on many a social events. To say nothing of the years of decorating the church for the Christmas season. Working with her is like no other experience. That is where her eye for detail comes in to view. Got paper - gotta list. We have a list for the Bride and Groom, a list for the MoB, a list for the Maid of Honor and Best Man, a list for each person who is involved, whatever capacity, on where to be, in what and when and what the heck to do when you are there and what to bring with you.

She has been known on many occasion to stay up all night working on something or decorating and the most remarkable part of that is she can still function and be kind and on target the next day. She is not only a great delegator but she is a hands on kind of gal. She knows the proper way to do things. Everything is always done with style, flair and a special knack.

Sure, five months ago, the decision could have been made not to engage the assistance of a trained professional. We would still be at the same spot on the calendar with just a few days before the blessed event. But I dare not even let myself ponder what state of mind I would be in right now. I would not be sitting here feeling relaxed and confident that Allison and Jon’s wedding will be a reflection of who they are. Full of their ideas and wishes. Enjoying the process and enjoying the moments. Knowing Allison can rest and relish in the moments leading up to her special day, assured that everything is taken care of , is the goal of Rosey and that is exactly what has happened.

Oh, but I don’t just call her our wedding planner. I call her my friend.

Thank you Rosey.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Reflections from the Mother of the Bride

 Mother of the Bride. Has a nice ring to it I do believe. When Jon announced his intentions to make Allison his bride, and the news sunk in, it was then that I decided I would be the very best MOB I could be. Not sure that I will be wearing the crown but with a few days until the wedding I have a different view of the landscape now.

1.              I had my wedding. This nuptial ceremony and festivities following isn’t about me. Although I am aware and like to think I am consciously observant of rules of etiquette, I don’t think stressing proper decorum is the same as pushing my ideas on my lovely daughter and her wonderful fiancé.
2.              Some things just don’t matter and some things do. Figure out early in the game, which is which.
3.              Be supportive. I am grateful that I am close to Allison and am fairly good at reading her and know when to add a little pressure and when just to stand back. Some decisions just take more time than others.  Be the strong foundation that she can make choices on.
4.              Some times my opinion is requested and some times it is just in the way. Sometimes Jon’s opinion is the only one that matters. Again it is their day not mine.
5.              After the bride finds her most stunning dress and the bridesmaids are gracefully and tastefully frocked it is time for the MOB to find a fabulous dress. I think it is important to feel and look attractive on the wedding day. I don’t want to be tugging, shifting, pulling or squirming. I want to walk confidently knowing that this breathtaking young woman is taking one of the most important steps of her life and Iam blessed to have played such an important role. I don’t want to be uncomfortable.
6.              The MOB does have an important job to give wise words. I have tried to remember to let the words that I think are so important to say roll around in my head a time or two before I allow something to come out of my mouth that I might regret.
7.              Help sort out the things that are really important. I think Allison has done a really good job with this. Probably more than I know, there are things that at one time in the wedding dreaming stage she would have been firm about wanting to have or do at her wedding. But as the planning continued she changed her mind. It is her right to switch directions when it feels right to do so for whatever reason.
8.              It isn’t so until the bride says it is so. This is probably one of my favorite lessons. No surprise here but I have ideas, thoughts and plans constantly rolling around in my head.  I can gently suggest, show, advise, offer, theorize, murmur or mutter about anything I think would be lovely, charming, fitting, gracious or beautiful. But until the bride says so, it isn’t so!
9.              Back off. I would rate myself as “needs improvement” on this one.  Case in point, I wanted to know what song was going to be played while Allison walks down the isle a couple months ago. Don’t ask how many times I have inquired on the status of this little detail.
10.          Be ever present but never overbearing. Allison knows I am here and will do whatever she needs me to do. She can call on me anytime. I like to think that she can confidently go about tending to details that only she can tend to because I have her back.
11.          Remember that I am not the only person who loves and supports Allison. Jon has been stellar in letting her know how much he loves Allison and wants the best for her. The little things he does for her warms my heart. I am working through the letting go of my baby who has grown up to be a remarkable and beautiful young woman. Fortunately we have a whole host of people who love and care about us all and are walking this path with us.
12.          No whining. No one, including but not limited to the MOB, the bride, the groom, the bridesmaids, the groomsmen, the brother of the bride or any other person who this applies to. This blessed and beautiful time has no place for the grumbles.
13.          Keep my purpose in view and my perspective clear and enjoy each and every moment.

Next job, work on being the very best mother-in-law. That one is really out of my league. But Jon seems to be a man of grace. He’ll get to practice it a lot.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Just Celebrate

Thanks to the Roman Emperor Constantine in 325 Easter falls on the first Sunday after the first full moon after the vernal equinox, therefore always between March 22 and April 25. This declaration ties Easter forever with the ancient Spring Equinox festivals and spiritual/religions traditions celebrating renewal and rebirth around the world. Growing up in Kansas sometimes this meant that our new spring dresses were covered up by our bulky winter coats, not quite ready to go into storage for the summer. Our patent leather Mary Jane’s had to be taken to church to be slipped on after we removed our boots donned to protect our feet from the slush outside.

I hold onto the tradition that Easter is a celebration in reverence to Jesus’ return to life after his death on the cross. It is the victory of life over death. This event is the most significant of all events for Christians. In many of the church services you can hear the Paschal greeting ringing out, an Easter custom among Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox and Eastern Catholic Christians, as well as among some Roman Catholic and Protestant Christians. It is used to greet another person with "Christ is Risen!", and the response is "Truly, He is Risen". I love the hope that this remembrance brings. I can appreciate and enjoy the legend surrounding Easter that the name was derived from Eostre who was the Anglo Saxon Goddess of spring. A celebration of newness, fertility, growth and rebirth. From that we enjoy the bunnies, eggs, chicks and grass which make their way into our Easter decorations. All things we associate with the season of spring. Another legend states that according to the Hebrew lunar calendar, Easter falls in the first month also known as ‘Nisan’. According to Hebrew tradition, the cause for its celebration is that, it was during this period, after 300 years Israel came out from the bondage of Egypt.

A clerk in a store yesterday asked me if I was ready for Easter. I of course am not although not because I haven’t given it plenty of thought. The clerk said that at least her boys are too old now so she only has to do one basket for her daughter. One of her son’s in the same age as my son. So I shared with her that my daughter who is 21 isn’t too old for an Easter basket and my son who is 13 has asked about the possibility of an Easter scavenger hunt. Which I wanted to dismiss but then my daughter reminded me I did one for her when she was younger so in all fairness…

Can you be too old to celebrate?

Families and friends gather to celebrate on this day. Young children and some grown children all over are hunting for those hidden eggs and treasures. The purpose of celebrations is to recognize the deeper cultural and religious values associated with our lives. Children receive messages about what is valued in our society (and what is not), through what we recognize, place importance on, respond to and educate about. My own values were developed during my childhood observances of celebrations. Our celebrations change as we grow older but what doesn’t change is the importance in celebrating. Celebrate the newness of spring. Celebrate the infusion of bright colors. Celebrate planting spring flowers that will take us through the summer. Celebrate the resurrection of life. Celebrate the days ahead. Celebrate where we have come from. Celebrate where we are going. Just celebrate.