Monday, January 25, 2010

Honest Scrap Award Survey ;

Susan gave me the "Honest Scrap Award". Thank you!
(I'm sorry it took me so long to fill this out!)

These are the rules to follow when in receipt of this award:
Tell 10 honest things about myself.
Pick 10 honest bloggers to pass it on to.
Tell who gave me the award in the first place.

Here we go...

1.) My nearly 12 year old Godson is also my cousin (twice over.) Our dads are brothers and they married two sisters - our moms! :) I've once did a little research on "double cousins" and I've found out, that cousins twice related are more genetically related than half siblings. Pretty interesting!

2.) The elementary school I used to go to has a special place in my heart. I love going back there to volunteer my time. It's like a second home to me. I just love the people there!

3.) In a little over 4 months, I'm going to be my cousin's (Her blog is linked below.) maid of honor when she gets married. Helping her with wedding details is a blast! :)

4.) I'm an only child, but I've always considered my cousins as siblings. They're amazing!

5.) I've dreamed of going to Ireland since I was about 8 years old. I hope to get there in a few years.

6.) I love to write. I'm in the process of trying to get a few stories published.

7.) I've been talking to a group of people online for over 10 years now. They are a great group of people. What's really neat is that they come from all over the world: Canada, England, Australia, and New Zealand! We'd love to all meet in Disney World one day.

8.) I love to travel, but I couldn't imagine living anywhere else, but south Louisiana.

9.) My mom and I are huge Disney fanatics! We're currently planning our next trip there within the next 2 years.

10.) I tend to talk alot in my sleep, so I'm told!

I don't have 10 people on my blog friend list, so I'm picking one.
I pass this award to my favorite cousin, Jessie! :)

Who's going to the Super Bowl?

The Saints are! WHO DAT?!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Just know that these things will never change for us at all.

Today, my dad's side of the family gathered for the 2nd time in less than a month to bury a family member. My MawMaw lost one of her sisters right before Christmas and this week, she lost her brother. We all know they are together with their other brothers and sisters and parents in heaven now, but it hurts to say goodbye. Both of them gave of themselves so much. They loved us all and made us all feel special and unique. They loved unconditionally. Seeing my MawMaw and my last surviving great aunt cry over their losses hurts deeply. Right before the service started today, my MawMaw went say goodbye to my great uncle one last time and told him to say hello to everyone in heaven and told him that they'd all be together soon. What a comforting thought, yet so heartbreaking to hear.

I got up and read during the service. The moment I got up there and began reading, I felt this overwhelming sense of peace. I picked out the readings myself with the help of one of my dad's cousins. As we were going through scriptures deciding what I'd read, I knew exactly which one I wanted to read for the first reading. The first scripture I read was from the book of Ecclesiastes. It talked about how there is a time for everything: "A time to laugh, a time to cry. I time to mourn, a time to dance." It just seemed so fitting. It describes life, itself. The second scripture I read was taken from the book of Thessalonians. It talked about how Jesus saved us and that when we die, we will all go to heaven and be together once more. It was a reading filled with hope. And when I read it, I felt it so strongly.

In between my readings, the soloist sang a short song, but I was able to remain standing at the podium. Standing up there, looking at my family - I felt so blessed. I have been blessed with an amazing family. A family who is always loving and supportive. I also felt a little sadness at the fact that the dynamics of ours is starting to change. The elders are getting older and starting to pass on. As much as I wish they would live forever, my grandparents won't actually be around forever. But, we have now and now is to be treasured. Then, I looked at the other side of the room and saw my cousins -the ones closer to my age who I've grown up with and the younger ones. The youngest ones, Aaron & Austin (my Godson and cousin) were both grinning from ear to ear at me and I couldn't help but smile. Once I was finished reading and sat back down, they both said I did a good job. As did the rest of the family. That made me feel really good!

Days like this makes you appreciate what you have. I treasure the moments I have with my family. And I trust in the fact that whatever life brings us, like the title of this entry says: things will never change for us at all. We will always be there for one another.

Enjoy heaven, Aunt Tee and NaNonk. Thank you for loving us. We love y'all!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

; these last 10 years *

According to a dictionary: a decade is a set, a series, or group. But, it's so much more, isn't it? It's time, passing. How do you define it? Moments; small ones and big ones, all connected. Some defining, some passing quietly. But, they all matter. So many pieces that create a puzzle, a puzzle you are unable to see, until a certain amount of time passes and you look back. Being an eternal optimist, I would hope everyone looks back at those times and smiles at the puzzle laid out before them. All those pieces that create a larger picture. Pieces of love, joy, laughter, growth, fond memories. And some are not so positive. Life hands you those not so good pieces, sometimes. It's inevitable. How you handle those pieces is up to you. But, every piece - good or bad, shapes you.

A decade. A lot can happen in 10 years. A 17 year old girl can finish school, start working, grow, dream, become someone people can rely on. All those frightening days of hospital stays and surgeries just a distant memory now. A 2 year old can go from being dependent on his parents and the people around him for everything into a nearly 12 year old boy who has his own opinions and ideas, loves sports, and craves adventure every day.

10 years ago, I was that 17 year old. Aaron (my MawMaw's youngest grandchild, my Godson) was a 2 year old enjoying his freedom of being able to walk and run on his own. Learning new words every day. Jessie (my cousin) and I were excitedly anticipating the new millennium. A big party, complete with a balloon drop filled with confetti, was planned. I felt like the future was just around the corner. The party went on just like we planned. It was the beginning of an exciting new year. Little did I know... 4 days later, one of those defining pieces of the puzzle would leave us heartbroken.

We all stood around my MawMaw's bed and held her hands, as we let her go. Never had I experienced something like that until then. We stood beside her as she was sick for years and we stood beside her that morning, as she made her way to heaven. The day of her funeral, as we were beginning to leave the graveyard.. I stood a bit off to the side on an incline and watched my family and close friends all start to slowly make their ways to their cars. For some reason, I thought (... and the thought is as vivid, now, 10 years later.. as it was then) of the future. 10 years from that day, to be exact. What would things be like? What would we be like? I can remember shuddering, not wanting to imagine 10 years without my MawMaw, being physically, in our lives. How would we go on happily?

Time continued to go on, as time does. We grew, we learned, we kept going. We've reached that 10 year mark. We're ok. I still miss her throughout the year, especially at this time. But, we're moving on. Today, I looked back at the puzzle that is the past 10 years. I saw joy, tears, hope.. all connected. And now, a new puzzle begins. I see this year as a milestone. Sure, I'll still miss her through the years. Some days will be harder than others. But, we've made it through the first decade. This year has so much in store. So many good things that are going to happen, so many good things that will happen that we don't know about yet.

Here's to a new puzzle... Below is one of those songs that struck me as words my MawMaw would say to me. It's a little reminder that she is, indeed, here and always will be. :)

Music Playlist at