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‘Tis the season!!


Well, Thanksgiving 2014 is a little more than a week away… as it approaches we start to feel the buzz of the Christmas spirit. This time of year is filled with many fond memories from my childhood.

This weekend, EverSoLightly and I dug out the Christmas decorations and put them up.. which also means we got to listen to our favorite christmas songs! EverSolightly use to tease me about the music I listen to during the holiday season… I listen to a lot of the typical Christmas music, but also a few that were favorites of my Grandma Graham. Grandma had 10 kids, and a bajillion and a half grand children. I kid… Sorta… in reality she had 40something grandchildren and 20 something great grandchildren at the time of her passing in 2003. We have a huge family which always lead to lots of people crammed into her small house in Portland. As a kid, it never ever seemed crowded. Thanksgiving (and Christmas Eve) we’d show up, eat tons of food, spend time with family and go home fat-er and happier.

Christmas Eve 1993 My uncle David providing a terrifying stare…

With such a large family, a lot of my cousins didn’t have the opportunity to get to know Grandma as well as I did. Part of that was the distance, but a lot of it was my mom. Being a single parent she had to take us kids with her just about everywhere. Every errand she took Grandma on, I went with. If she needed a babysitter, Grandma was there.

During the holiday season, when we’d take Grandma to her appointments, or Christmas shopping, she’d always ask us to play one of two tapes. Christmas by the Oak Ridge Boys and John Denver, Christmas Like a Lullaby.

The song I posted above was by far her favorite. Christmas Carol. A song about a woman who would sing christmas songs year around, and collect money from those that passed by. Supposedly, in the song, she takes that money and buys presents for the homes that have children in the town. Grandma always loved listening to that song, and I have so many fond memories tied to listening to it this time of year.

The first Christmas we spent without her, my mom put the cassette in and we listened to that song on repeat while we laughed and cried together over memories with Grandma. She was the only actual grandparent that I knew… I had other “adopted” grandparents of sorts but Grandma Graham was my only blood related grandparent.

When she would babysit me, I’d come over, eat sugar-free candy, butter on crackers (sounds nasty, and maybe it is

One of my cousins, Bethanie, Uncle Don and myself Christmas 1993 at Grandma’s

but I loved it as a kid..) She’d save her scraps from sewing, and put them in a bag by her couch… She’d turn on Matlock, and start sewing… I’d sit on the floor by her feet and glue fabric scraps to a piece of paper and she’d hang every single one up once I was done.

I am so grateful for the memories I have with her, and though at the time I may have found Grandma Graham’s house boring at times (she was a little on the grumpy side) I’m happy to be able to look back at the holidays and remember the years spent having wrapping paper wars, and sneaking my favorite treats before dinner.

Though the Graham Family isn’t quite the same without Grandma, EverSoLightly and I have started our own traditions, such as Wine Thanksgiving (5 years and counting!!) and our Murder Mystery party to name a few. :)

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“Sometimes the heart sees what is invisible to the eye.”


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Many of you probably know that EverSoLightly and I have been together since 2008. On the outside, on every social media network, you’ll find very few details about our life together. Mostly, you’ll find lots of wonderful photos taken over the past 6, yes 6 years. 1927618_82693971763_362643_n EverSoLightly has been by my side through more than I could even begin to explain. He’s been there for me when people I love and care about have fallen ill, had surgeries, or, in a few rare cases, passed away. He stood by my side when I was un-employed and dead broke. He’s been my rock and the voice of reason when I need one.

    Don’t let the above fool you though, because I’ve been by his side through a lot too. As a whole, we are always there for one another, regardless what’s going on. He was my shoulder to cry on, many holidays in a row when the world left me beaten and bruised. I was by his side when we found out a member of his family was in the hospital, and he just needed someone to sit in silence with him while he processed the news.

1913799_153459316763_4418512_n    When we started our relationship, he was a fresh faced young 19 year old kid. I was a goofy newly 21 year old. Together we’ve grown up, and experienced many life “firsts.” We both moved into our “first” apartment together. We had no idea what we were doing, and boy did it show. We lived in an un-furnished apartment for 6 months. Slept on a twin sized air mattress we had borrowed from our friend Lauren’s parents. Really, I slept on the air mattress and he slept on the floor. We had a dresser, and my little tv/dvd player combo. That was it. Over the first 6 months we collected some odds and ends from Lauren’s parents, and Lauren herself really… we found ourself with a couch, and some dishes… and eventually a full sized blow-up mattress. Times were rough, money was nonexistent and we didn’t have working cars. that first year was amazing. No, truly, it was!

27209_388553496763_1129113_n    I can’t even begin to tell you the adventures we went on… mostly because they were only adventures to us…walking through our small city might not sound like an adventure to you… but it was to us. We had so many negative comments and vibes sent our direction when we first started our relationship, that we had to find the beauty in everything we did, or we wouldn’t have made it.

37733_414954481763_7929524_n    As time wore on, and we adjusted to living on our own, we grew closer. He was easily my best friend. We not only lived together, but we also worked together. After work on fridays we’d go down to the common area in our apartment building and have nerf wars. When you’re young, broke, and in love, you’ll find any possible way to have an adventure together. Nerf guns provided plenty of fun date nights!

20644_223627776763_8227203_n    What social media, photos and even looking at him and I together doesn’t tell you, the tough times. Believe me, we have had our fair share. We’ve fought over what to eat for dinner, whether or not he was wearing my socks… you name it, we’ve “discussed” it. i’ve cried over stupid things, and irrationally gotten upset. He’s given me the silent treatment over things we now laugh at. My point? We’re human. We have flaws, we aren’t any different than anyone else. Every healthy relationship has ups and downs. To me, its a sure sign our relationship is growing with us.

35832_414398926763_4545464_n    At the end of the day, we make a great team, and love one another unconditionally. People on the outside don’t see that… heck,even some close to us don’t really see how well we work together. We have, thus far, defied all odds, and shown some debbie downers that we’re in this for the long haul.
68023_451767391763_2116003_nThe one thing people ask all the time, is if/when we’re getting married. They have discussions and arguments for every answer I could give them…. this is such a heavy question. I have had many battles with this question, because as a whole young couples are always pressured to get married and if you wait too long you’re doing it wrong. Really, I don’t battle this at all anymore, but I have in the past. We have certain family members and friends that always ask other couples, who have been together a quarter of the time we have, when they’re getting married, and even pressure the couples to get engaged soon.
40669_424152651763_1341845_nSince when has it been socially acceptable to tell people that they need to get married? Shouldn’t this be something that happens naturally and organically? EverSoLightly and I will stand before everyone we know, and stress out over plans and details and worry about the people who don’t approve of our marriage, when we’re ready to deal with all of that. Right now, we’re committed to one another, and the two of us and God are the only ones that need to know.

254700_10151195244881764_1621792677_nWe don’t owe explanations, or definition’s to anyone but ourselves, and through the past 6 years I’ve learned that this is such an important factor in a relationship. You know, aside from loving, caring, and being there for one another through thick and thin.
40507_425698076763_115174_nJust looking back at the past few years, I am so incredibly lucky to have spent them with EverSoLightly. He’s everything I could have imagined when I was a little girl. He’s gentle, loving yet firm and reliable. He has a good sense of adventure and does an amazing job cooking delicious foods. He’s artistic, and modest, and one of the best things Icould mention, he loves my family and they love him.

    149153_470487416763_2889562_nNot only has he accepted me, and all my crazy quirks into his life, but he’s accepted my friends and family and welcomed them as his own. Nothing is more wonderful than seeing him spend time with my nephews. It warms my heart through and through to see the four of them bond together.
I32550_402351376763_165585_nt’s been no secret if you knoweither of us that we’ve struggled to be accepted by his family, and we’ve worked hard to show them that we really are in this for the long haul. I’m sure I’m not who they pictured their only son to spend the rest of his life with, but I’m also certain that they have accepted and witnessed the love he and I have for one another.
382433_10150985775381764_1690543852_nI don’t want to put anegative emphasis on his family, because they have been a steady and strong influence in his life alone as well as ours together. For that we could never thank them enough. So take the paragraph above with a grain of salt and understand that the past is the past and we’re living in the moment.

10392254_159094331763_7009208_nI think these past 2 years or so, we’ve been in a rough patch so to speak. More specificallywe’vebeen busy trying to figure out this whole adult thing. These past couple months we’ve started to get back on track and are spending more time just to truly listen to one another and hear what we have to say. We’re trying to keep that spark of adventure in our lives, the one that we had years and years ago when we were just starting off. I can assure you this autumn and winter will be filled with many adventures, and hey, maybe even a few more blog posts!
At the end of each and every day, I thank God for all that he has given me, and for bring EverSoLightly into my life. He came in at the perfect moment, and he’ll always be my Prince Charming. I cannot thank God enough for the gift of love that we have for one another.

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empty promises.


I just noticed that I have created a mini-monster. I always end my post with empty promises of posting more often or what I’m going to post next, and then life gets in the way and next thing I know months have passed.

I haven’t really been in a blogging mood since Auntie Bea passed away… but I’m really going to try and change that. Really truly.

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“Good better best. Never let it rest. Until good is better and better is best!”


Kurt, Carrie and I

My last post, was on June 24th 2014. I had started the 100 Happy Days or 100 Days Happy. I believe I made it to day 2. I’m guessing some of you might have wondered what happened. Well, my last post I left you asking for prayers and thoughts for my Auntie Bea because she was in the hospital. The following evening, June 25th 2014 she passed away. She was surrounded by her family and my mom was able to go be with her and her family that evening. I will continue with my 100 Happy Days but I probably won’t start it back up until August just because I’m still trying to sort through my thoughts, emotions and memories. I know though, that Auntie Bea would encourage me to be happy for not just 100 days, but every day.

Burress Family

She was the kind of woman that saw the silver lining in everything. She was always there for everyone and had an amazing sense of humor. She wasn’t my mother, or a blood relative of any sort, but she still was family to me.

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I still find myself fighting back the tears, and trying to remember happy memories with her, but it still hurts. Knowing I’ll never be able to see her smile, or hear her voice again. Her family had a celebration of her life a couple of weekends ago and we were lucky to be able to spend that day with all of them. It was beautiful. I can’t even begin to express how loved Bea was. So many people showed up to celebrate her life.

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Something everyone agreed on that day, was just how much love and happiness she had to share with everyone. She mad such an amazing impression on everyone’s lives, and we are all very blessed to have had her in our lives. Everyone.

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I’ve been writing this post for a week now, and can’t bring myself to type up everything I want to. So I’m just going to end it before I continue to ramble. One day, I hope to be able to organize my thoughts and be able to share some of my memories with Auntie Bea.

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“Good humor is a tonic for mind and body. It is the best antidote for anxiety and depression. It is a business asset. It attracts and keep friends. It lightens human burdens. It is the direct route to serenity and contentment.”


Day 2: 100 days of Happy:

Today, memories of my childhood are making me happy. As a child, my mother nannied for a family of 8. 6 kids two adults, and various pets (dogs, cats, fish…) most of my memories are with their family. Today, I’m filled with hilarious and wonderful memories surrounding their mom, my “Auntie Bea”

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I’m going to share just a few with you today. I found out yesterday that even after an intense battle with tumors, which she won, she is not doing very well and suffered a heart attack. My heart is with her and her family today and every day.

She was always smiling, and loved being with her children. Birthdays in their house were always a big deal, and even if you didn’t want to, she would make you wear underwear on your head. :)

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When we were younger, their youngest, Kurt, and I would bring her slugs out of the garden and she would pay us for each slug we found and killed.

She was always there for us, if I (as I so openly did) cried she was there with a smile ready to make me laugh.

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She isn’t just a wonderful friend and mom, she was also an incredibly talented artist. As a child I remember staring at her work in awe. It just came so naturally to her, and I always remember dreaming of being as talented as she is.

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So, for day 2 of my 100 days of Happy series, I’m happy to have had the Burress family, and more specifically, Auntie Bea!

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100 Days of Happy.


This has been going around Facebook, and I’ve been thinking about doing it for a few months but didn’t want to do it on Facebook… so after thinking about it, I think this might be a great way to get back into the habit of posting more often… so here goes.

#Day1 #100daysofhappy
Today my beautiful and intelligent niece is the topic for my 1st post. She’s here visiting and I am forever grateful to have her in my life. I’m one lucky aunt!

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