Subscribe to our RSS Feeds
Blog Index

Happy Birthday Papa

First thing this morning Facetime's Jaxson..."Happy Birthday Papa " so that sets the tone for the day..Jaxson and Papa have a date today, just the two of them.  Liam and Papa had their day yesterday...and all they have to do is call and Papa is putty in their hands.

I could write all kinds of wonderful things about Jim here for his birthday...we've been together a very long time but what I see now as the big love of his life is these two little guys, who think the sun shines and the moon rises because of this most generous man.  He is the keeper of all their batteries, for all there toys.  He is their number one fix it man.  When there is a problem of any kind, they call Papa and guess what, Papa always has the answer.  He plays and builds with them.  He swims and walks in the park with them.  They check out bugs, spiders and all kinds of creepy crawlies that give me the willies.  In truth, they are best buddies...

Sometimes though they get in trouble..They are not suppose to go to McDonalds but sometimes he takes they can get the latest toy in the Happy Meal box.  Sometimes they stay down in the workshop so long they are late for getting to where they need to be...but nothing is cooler than building in the workshop with Papa.  They even gave Papa a new apron for the workshop for Christmas this year. The other thing that Papa lets them do is each week after swimming he lets them get real junk food from the vending machine..I think that's part of the reason they go to's all good though in the end.

The best part though for Papa is to get kisses and I love you's..everytime they are here.  Jaxson declares him "the best"...and Liam is his best game buddy.  He has walked with them since their first steps, he still carries Jaxson in the house when he falls asleep in the car.  They have ridden on his shoulder countless times and they have driven his boat better than him and he lets them.. He is strong for them, teaching them all the lessons little boys need to know as they grow. He's already taught them how to shave...LOL   It's a wonderful relationship that these three have.

So onward Papa, for another year.  Where you walk they will follow, what you do they will copy. What you teach them they will believe.  Wishing you a very happy birthday today...and I hope Jaxson isn't beating the pants off you at the Castle...Papa your the very best...the boys told me so...

This little quote discribes you perfectly:

"Grandpa has ears that truly listen, arms that always hold, love that’s never ending and a heart that’s made of gold."





It Was The Best Christmas Ever...MOM

Those were the words that Liam whispered to his Mom when she asked him how his Christmas was.  Those words, from a seven year old, are a gift in itself.  It tells me that he, and possibly Jaxson, will really hold this Christmas in their hearts all their life...of course Tucker played a big part.  You never forget a gift like him...all that soft fluffiness, full of endless energy,  and loving the boys right from the start..and here is how the rest of the morning went...


Jaxson and Uncle Chris...Christmas Eve..


They finally get up and move cautiously into the living room.  Jaxson staying close to his brother.  This is Jaxsons first year of really "getting it"...

Ok. now he gets it...what is that?  Santa brought Jaxson a geiger counter.  He loves rocks and now he can go to the beach and find rocks and money..he really liked this gift from Santa.

Oh my sneakers.  Jaxson is pretty excited about these...He put them right on. I think he's got a bit of his flashy Nana in go Jaxson...your rocking it here.

Well after Tucker I would say this was Liam's second best gift.  It's all he talked about before Christmas and he was pretty happy to unwrap that how excited they both were..

It was Lego city by the time the day was over.  Jaxson got this battle you think he liked it...

that face...

Before the real puppy appeared, there was this puppy that Liam loved.  

Getting help from Dad to put the spaceship together. 

Taking a break from opening gifts to have a little run with Tucker.  

Rest time for Tucker.  His first day in his new home, his first Christmas.  It's a big job for a little guy. Uncle Chris to the rescue...


Although it seemed to be all about Tucker today, it's really Riley who shines in this family and he deserves the spotlight.  For 10 years he has been a loyal companion to Jenna and the boys..and now he gets to rest more and enjoy all the pats and treats a dog of his age deserves.  I think before to long him and Tucker will be best friends as Riley takes Tucker under his wing.  Merry Christmas Riley..

So it was a whirlwind day that is right up there at the top of the Memory pile. For Papa and I it was a much appreciated gift to go through this season with the boys, both of them believing in the magic of Christmas and Santa Clause.  We also welcomed Elf on the shelf to our house when the boys discovered we didn't have one...They named ours Brownie and each day that little elf would move around and the boys would always run in the door to see what kind of trouble Brownie was in now.  At their house they had Buddy...he was really bad.  I am happy to say that Brownie is now back at the North Pole.  

So many gifts this year...our son and daughter both live close by..we spend lots of time together during the season..and the boys bring it all to light from being a King and a Shepard in the church play to being full of wonder at the gifts that Santa brings...we are a small family but boy we make a lot of noise, filling each house with laughter, running and bright many kisses and hugs and I love you to the Moon and back...and even for me, a snuggle in bed with Jaxson before he opens his eyes to discover this new day...let me just tell you, there is no better gift on Christmas or any other day, than the sweet smell and soft smile of a little one as they are just waking up...and those kisses, those butterfly kisses, you guessed gift of all...

I hope you all found many moments of quiet joy and perhaps even a bit of loud joy over your Christmas day...wishing you all a very Happy New Year.  May it be filled with hope love and possiblities in the new year...

My word for next year....Possibilities...


An Early Morning Visit...A Christmas Story




Christmas morning, early, I wake up and think of you.  I lay in bed remembering our Christmas mornings together. In all the days of the year, this is the day I miss you most.  We would quietly creep down the stairs and I would put the coffee pot on for you and Jim and make tea for myself.  I remember you still, sitting at the kitchen table in your red bathrobe, hair a bit funky, whose isn't when they first wake up, legs crossed, your pink pajama's peeking out as if to say hello, a look of excitement on your face that was not there any other morning of the year.  The feeling in the kitchen was one of great expectation, even in the silence that we were experiencing at the moment. The kids had not woken yet and so we waited.  You lived not five minutes away from us for the last 15 years of your life, yet each Christmas eve you would sleep over. It was something we started when Chris was a baby and he didn't even know who Santa Claus was, but you came, and you stayed each year except for last Christmas.  I look back now and wonder who was more excited, your or the kids.  Growing up we didn't have much. No gifts or toys during the year, nonew clothes except at the begninning of the school year.  We just didn't have the money but somehow, each Christmas a miracle came to be, and Santa always came to us.  I don't know how you did it but you were a big believer in the Christmas mircle and you always made it happen.  So it was not surprising to me to see you excited when I had my own kids and Christmas once again became your joy.  Not so much because of the gifts, but because of the excitement and laughter of the day.  Your gift was my kids and when those little ones finally got up, you would move from the kitchen into the living room, always sitting in the red chair, with a dog tucked in beside you and just watched.  It was like you turned into a kid again yourself.  You had presents to open each Christmas morning also but you never opened them until later in the day when the entire family came. Christmas morning at my house was reserved for just being in the Santa moment, with the kids.  Finally, when all the gifts for them were open and they had come to you to show you a special toy and you made plans with how you both would spend time with gift.  Then after a million kisses and hugs, they would talk you into opening your stocking. I have never, until this day, seen anyone take so long to open a stocking. They stood by your side as you reached in and pulled each little item out. You would study it and tell them how much you loved it and when you were going to use, read, or smell it.  Chocolate at the bottom was your favorite gift in that big old stocking and as neatly as you unpacked it, you repacked it to take home with you. The kids loved that you were there.  You made Christmas morning special.

So as the sun was rising, we were talking, about all the things that Mom's and daughter's share on a quiet early Christmas morning...what the day will bring, who will come, comparing one year to the next.  How fast the kids are growing...then all of a sudden the silence is broken...little feet, sweet baby voices, calling from upstairs...Nana did Santa come yet.  You yelled back, yes "yes he did and you better get down here quick"...and they would come running, the smiles were priceless the excitement un-containable as they greeted us with wow's and "this is just what I wanted" all this confusion Jim would work his way down the stairs, but you didn't notice as you just joined in the fun.

As I look back, those were priceless years, how fortunate Chris and Jenna were to have you celebrate each Christmas morning with them.  To sleep over with them, in their beds and tell them the stories of Santa and how one year you told Chris that Santa and the reindeer were up on the roof and he believed you.  I laugh about it now but if you said it, it must be true and who knows, maybe it did happen that way.  Chris believed and that made it magical.

So, now I go to Jenna's each Christmas morning.  No, I don't sleep over but I do get there before the boys wake up.  It's an early morning call but no worries, I'm awake and ready.  We drive over in the dark, again only five mintues, it just occurs to me the similarity of the distances between our houses, first my Mom's to mine and now mine to Jenna's.  Jenna and I sit and talk like my Mom and I did, we work around the kitchen, sharing the same excitement as we wait for the boys to get up.  Last year we had to wake Jaxson but this year he should be up much earlier.  Then after hugs and kisses and a few photo's, I will take my place on the brown couch and watch the boys, as my Mom watched mine and the joy goes generation to the next.

I find it pretty amazing how sometimes these thoughts come into my head so early in the morning.  I find I do my best writing when I am in bed either falling asleep or just waking up.  I think my mind is working when I'm resting but I also think that in those quiet, pre-conscience moments, is really when our love ones visit.  Yes, I do believe that's true and what better time for my Mom to come clearly into my mind and heart than on Christmas eve morning...reminding me that she is close as we once again witness the Magic and Miracle of Christmas in the eyes and the hearts of the "little ones".


The Peace of Christmas

In our joy, we think we hear a whisper.

At first it is too soft. Then only half heard.

We listen carefully as it gathers strength.

We hear a sweetness. The word is Peace.

We tremble at the sound. We are thrilled by its presence.

It is what we have hungered for.

Not just the absence of war. But true Peace.

A harmony of spirit, a comfort of courtesies.

Security for our beloveds and their beloveds.

We welcome the Peace of Christmas.  

Maya Angelou


A huge thank you to all of you who stopped by this year to comment and visit, to cheer me up and on, who help me find my way on days when I let doubt in.  I have the best cheerleaders here.  You are all so appreciated and loved in this space...the space that we share back and forth...Merry Christmas to all of you and yours...and a very healthy, happy and loving New Year full of great adventures...Peace my all that you choose to do.  


The Crane's Estate At Castle Hill

Christmas on the Cape Ann coast of Massachusetts is beautiful and timeless, at least that's how it feels when we recently visited the Crane's Estate, all decked out in it's holiday finest.  The sun was shinning, the ocean was at the bottom of the hill, the sound of music and the scent of gingerbread filled the air. It was a grand day to get your Christmas mojo on.  Nothing was left undone and it was just magical...from the moment you stepped through the front door..


“Happy, happy Christmas, that can win us back to the delusions of our childish days; that can recall to the old man the pleasures of his youth; that can transport the sailor and the traveller, thousands of miles away, back to his own fire-side and his quiet home!”  Charles Dickens


The Crane's Estate is a property of the Trustee's of the Reservation.  I would really like to encourage you to visit any of their properties if you are fortunate to have a few in your area.  They are always beautiful kept and the grounds provide wonderful outdoor activities...even if it's only a walk along a coastal path...


Page 1 ... 3 4 5 6 7 ... 55 Next 5 Entries »