Saturday, November 27, 2010

Mark's Big Proud Italian Family

If the title of this post seems a little like the movie title, My Big Fat Greek Wedding, it's supposed to. The middle of November, Mark and I flew to Sacramento to celebrate his aunt's 90th birthday. Our weekend can be summed up by saying that it was a lot like the movie, My Big Fat Greek Wedding but they are Italian and it was a birthday celebration instead of a wedding. It was obvious they are proud of their heritage and they love each other! Mark got to see relatives he hasn't seen in 20, and some, 30 years.
Most people are surprised to learn that Mark's paternal grandfather is from Italy... must be that strawberry blonde hair and fair skin disguise he wears... That would be from the Irish part of the family. So... there you have it... my Irish Italian husband. Mark's father and brother both have the darker Italian coloring with olive skin tones and dark hair. Mark's mom is also a brunette so you can imagine that Mark thought for the longest time that he was adopted. When he was 8 years old he finally met an uncle, his father's brother, and finally felt like he actually belonged. I wish I had a then-and-now photo of Mark and his Uncle Harvey but the nearly 50 years later version will have to do. Mark also looks like his father's sister, Aunt Jean. She has the most beautiful red hair. She is also the one who helped make it possbile for us to join the festivities. I have this little connection with her... not sure if it goes both ways but I really love being around her and love when she comes to visit. I just used the camera on my phone and set the flash on auto... sadly, there is still a blue cast to lots of the pictures...and blury... I've got to learn to hold my breath...sigh!

The other, queenly lady in the picture with Mark is his Aunt Nadine. On the way there I was wondering what 90 would look like. She is amazing. Very active. Walks upright with no assistance of any kind. She swears by shuffleboard twice a week. Says you've just got to keep moving. She's lovely. The two smiling ladies are Harvey's daughters, Stormy and Julie. Nadine has 3 daughters, Pam, Debbie (the original Debbie Raymond) and Michelle. I didn't get pictures of them for some reason. We're hoping others many people there to celebrate!

The rest of the photos are of Pam's home. She is Nadine's oldest daughter and hosted the dinner celebration in her beautiful home. We had a wonderful time!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

My Journal

The past couple of years I got really good at my journal because I loved copying and pasting my blog into it. I wrote in it as well. Lately, things have been so hectic and yet the counsel to keep a journal has not been rescinded. I've worried that no one especially cares what I have to say or that maybe they care but don't really have time....and then I realized that's not really what matters. I have no idea if anyone will find, read, or care about this blog but I know I enjoy it once in a while and that it definitely motivates me to keep a journal... So! Here's my committment to journaling just because I've been counseled to. If you happened here and care to stay a while, I hope it's uplifting.

The Holidays are always tender times for me. It will be 20 years this December since my Mom graduated to Heaven. I always have spices, (cinnamon, cloves, ginger, sometimes orange rinds) simmering on the stove. It's like comfort food...only comfort smells. It reminds me of her! At this time of Thanksgiving, I am grateful for her example and her testimony. There was no question for any of her posterity that she loved the Lord. Thank you, Mother, for you amazing example.