Love, Laughter, and Life

Adventures With a Book Lover


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My First Birthday without Mom

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This birthday is bittersweet.

I’m thankful and so happy to complete yet another year of life on Planet Earth. But this marks the first year since I was born that I will not have my mommy calling me as early as she could to be the first to wish me a happy birthday. She loved to re-live and tell me all about my day 1 of being a human. My parents were so happy to bring home a baby girl, as my mom had miscarried my 5-month old brother before she became pregnant with me.

Ok. Logically, she did not call me when I was a baby or still living at home. But she celebrated my special day for 56 years before she joined daddy in Heaven.

AND, I can’t find the photos I scanned of my first birthday. That is the oddest thing. I KNOW I scanned them. Some day, some place, I will find them.

Must be because the number (of years) is creeping ever higher . . . I did find a photo of my daddy holding me. His little Angelina Popalina.

Giving thanks for another birthday and the good health I’ve been granted by God. Such blessings. This aging 57 year-old body is hanging in there, even though creaks and groans litter early morning adventures.

Happy birthday to all of my birthday buddies. If you celebrate November 20th, or any day in my favorite 11th month, have a fabulous day! May the LORD bless you!

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Throwback Thursday: Flowers and Me

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I was pleased to find this little gem of a photo in my baby book. After losing mom in May, every treasure I uncover has become much more precious. My mama loved her little Angie.

I don’t remember seeing this photo before, though I know I’ve had it for years. Mom despaired of my hair growing and I was often seen sporting a comb-over wave to give the appearance of ample hair. Curly and fine, just like it is today. Though with much more gray.

These irises bloomed in front of my Grandma Wheetley’s house in Sunnyside, Washington. We visited often, I imagine, and this is also the town where my mother and father met and started the journey of lifelong marriage.

Little Angie, as I was nicknamed by grandparents on both sides, is nearly as tall as the gorgeous irises. What I love, besides seeing a much younger, cuter me, is that I obviously love flowers. Just like I do now. These days finds me planting more sunflowers, wildflowers, and blooming bushes, but the beginning of my love affair with gardening sprouted right there with me playing in the irises.

My mama was an excellent seamstress. I can’t ask now, but I think she or my grandmother probably made this dress. I so wish I could sit and pour over these childhood photos with her one more time. My siblings and I were blessed to have a mother who loved us unconditionally. Not that we didn’t get called on the carpet, but good mothers have to do that to straighten out our stubborn bits.

What special memories do you have of your parents or grandparents?


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Happy Hump Day Haiku Challenge: mama reversal

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a child, needing mom

for guidance, encouragement,

model to follow.

 

a mother, aging

ill, failing, needing her child,

someone to grasp hands.

 

from birth, you held me,

fed, tended, loved, taught, mothered.

reversing the care.

 

mama reversal by Angie Quantrell

 

For my mama. Missing you! Honored to reverse the care.


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Celebrating Moms

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There are moms, and there are MOMS.

And I’m not just talking about women who give birth to babies and become mothers. Well, yes, those sorts of moms.

But also, moms who have adopted, claimed, or otherwise taken in extra babies, children, and adults and made them a part of the family. Moms who have mothered others through tough times or through career choices. Moms who have taught more than just their own offspring, baked cookies for the neighborhood kids, shared/traded hand-me-downs and kid-paraphernalia, or tucked in all the littles who happened to be around at nap or bedtime. Moms who embrace the friendless, welcome in the newcomers, stand up for the picked-on. No nonsense moms who tell it like it is, teach how it should be, and show by example how to do it.

Moms not limited to birth or adoption or choice, but also by caring. Moms of fur babies, next-door-neighbors, or troops, clubs, or teams. And those dads. Dads who mother their children in so many ways, again by choice or circumstances.

Moms. All of them.

Thank you, moms (mothers, mamas, mommys), for all you have done, are doing, and will do to mother us! We love you!

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This Mother’s Day, heaven has two new mothers. My mommy, Bonnie, passed away on May 7, and is up there rejoicing in Heaven with Jesus, daddy, and all of her loved ones. My other mommy, Carole (Kevin’s mama), passed away last June 7. I’m sure she was ready to welcome mom with a cup of coffee and lots of catching up. This was our first Mother’s Day without our moms. We be sad. But up there? The celebrating just jumped up a notch!

While our Mother’s Day took a turn towards the side of mourning, and we have mom-sized holes in our hearts, we KNOW we will see them again when it’s our turn to go. No more tears, pain, broken and failing bodies. Just love, joy, and reunion.

Peace to all who miss their mothers.


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Fun Friday: Have My Cake, Will Eat It Too!

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My mama gave me my birthday cake yesterday. Now it’s up to me to bake it and eat it.

This family joke began years ago when my elegantly aging sweet mama just couldn’t get the energy to bake my baby brother a cake. So I told her she should just give him a cake mix box and the frozen strawberries (strawberry shortcake) and let him make it himself.

That’s become the norm for many birthday occasions, and it’s perfect for me. And we laugh and enjoy the shared memories and fun. Stress is taken from my mama, she doesn’t have to worry about baking a cake, and she can just love on us as only mamas can.

Do you have any funny family traditions? Share in the comment section. Thanks! Have a wonderful day!