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Choose your path and don’t look back.

Mr. and Mrs. #Shannyforever

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Magic Was In The Air ~ July 12, 2014

We had a wedding!

Friends, family and loved ones gathered at the end of a beautiful July day, in overwhelming joy, to witness the exchanging of heartfelt vows, celebrate love, and to dance our butts off. All of that and so much more! Everyone ate, drank and got merry, just as intended. And now two extraordinary young people are a brand new family because they chose each other!

There was so much love and joy floating around this place for three full days, I thought I might burst. Every time I turned around there was another smiling face or a hug or a special conversation waiting for me. Not only did the gorgeous bride choose a bright, fun, caring and thoughtful man to share her life with, but he came with a warm, loving family that has embraced us all and now we are bound together too….an unexpected and totally awesome benefit of our children coming together.

Read the rest of this entry

Wedding Bells

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Here is a sneak peek of the bride and groom. I’ll have a full post in a few days. Right now I’m basking in the glow of a week of beautiful memories.

I can’t get enough of Grandma’s exuberance in this shot! SO. MUCH. JOY.

Let’s go to Wig’s Wag-a-Bag for an ICEE!

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Let’s go to Wig’s Wag-a-Bag for an ICEE!

My three sisters and I often spent summers in Oklahoma with aunts, uncles and lots of cousins. The excitement of summertime filled us with so much light and joy we thought we might burst.

The days were barefoot lazy, and except for meals, blissfully structure-less.

We’d get up early and put on yesterday’s bathing suits – sometimes still damp from being washed out in the sink the night before. Hours were spent running through the water sprinkler, laughter filling the air. Later we’d ride bikes, play games, lay under a shade tree making whistles out of blades of grass.

Once a week Aunt Cookie would load us all into the car and we’d go to the laundry mat down the street. In our bathing suits, we found ways to occupy ourselves while the clothes tumbled in the machines.

After the clothes were dry and folded, we’d go across the street to Wig’s Wag-a-Bag for tiny brown bags of penny candy and an ICEE!

Barefoot, bathing suits, crazy hair and an ICEE. Those were the days.

A Settlers of Catan Confession

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So, have you been roped into had the pleasure of playing a game of Settlers of Catan yet? Perhaps with a nerdy twenty-something in your life?

“It’s a board game Mom, come on you’ll love it. It’s pretty easy once you learn the rules.”

Oh the rules…. We’ll get to those later, but first the premise: Each player is a settler trying to build settlements and cities by acquiring and trading resources. You get victory points as your settlements grow and the first one to get ten victory points wins. Sounds easy enough.

“Ok! Count me in. I’ll be blue.”

As I sipped a second glass of wine, the kids proceeded to lay out the hexagon-shaped board pieces with pictures of grass, bricks, rocks and wood on them, placed some number tokens (seemingly randomly) on top of those, divided up some cards into stacks and handed me the dice.

“What’s that?” I asked, pointing to a lonely wooden man standing on a board piece that looked like the desert. Read the rest of this entry

Magical Thinking

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Magical Thinking

 

Writing 101 – Assignment.

Tell the tale of your most prized possession. Use as many words as it takes.

 

 

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My red scrapbook is old, musty and bulging with a lifetime of love letters, keepsakes and photographs. It is where I keep the Apollo 17 pin that I wore while watching the last rocket (that would ever land on the moon) launch from the white sands of Cocoa Beach in December of 1972. Nestled among the yellowing pages are my blue and gold embroidered Presidential Physical Fitness patch, and my nickel-plated Vietnam POW/MIA bracelet; the very bracelet that I wore religiously for months until it broke in half. I secretly worried that the breaking of that bracelet meant my soldier might never return home.

When you’re thirteen years old, you can get carried away with magical thinking.

But the very first page of my scrapbook, the one with my baby pictures, is where my heart lives. There are four black corner stickers hugging my most prized possession in the world – a photograph of me and my daddy. The caption reads: “Vanessa 9 months, with Daddy”. My childhood scrapbook is not neat, organized, color-coordinated or of archival quality. But it’s mine, and mama’s handwriting under that fading photograph is proof we were once a family. Read the rest of this entry

Here Comes The Bride

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Here Comes The Bride

Writing 101 – Assignment.

Free Writing. Write at least 400 words and once you start typing, don’t stop.

 

A few short days after announcing her engagement, I had already bought a dress and the perfect shoes. As mother of the bride, I wasn’t going to waste a single moment. At first the happy couple was planning on a fall wedding, after the heat of the summer has released its death grip on us and allowed that first northern to blow in with its promise of lasting relief. But after visiting several wedding venues, a sense of urgency developed. Some venues were astonished that the bride was inquiring about a date for this year and not next. “Oh, you’re talking October, 2014? That might be a problem.” Imagine my surprise when this call came: “Mom! We found a venue and set the date! We’re getting married outside in July!!!” July had plenty of dates available at a great venue, and a discounted price. Not their first choice, but we’ll make it work. We’re not going to let a little Texas heat in the middle of July scare us away. Read the rest of this entry

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