Godchildren Are My Gifts From God!

Last night was a true joy and a gift I really needed, as we spent the evening with our Lopez fam! They include one of my besties of more than twenty years, Kris and her kids Karyn, Kendra, Haydee and Bobby. Only Haydee is my official Goddaughter, but I claim all four of them! I’m also thankful for the fact that I was privileged to be in the room for both Haydee and Bobby’s births. 

The evening began with Haydee giving me a blow by blow of each of her high school classes this year. She covered it all! What the teachers were like, the assignments given thus far, and how much she loved all her classes and teachers (well, ok, except for that one!). Sitting there listening to Haydee, I was glued to her every word and having the time of my life! Every now and then during her narrative, I’d ask a question which she happily answered. My conversation with Haydee reminded me so much of my first day of school talks with my mom years ago. If you’ve read my book, you know that my mom would take the day off from work every first day of school, all the way up until my first day of college. While Haydee was talking, I was hoping that my mom had as much fun listening to me as I was having listening to Haydee. It was awesome!! Haydee reminds me so much of my younger self – a true lover of learning, as long as the teacher makes it fun and interesting!

One of the best parts of the evening was going “old school” with Haydee! She took me to her room and back in time to play the old Atari games!!! Remember those??? Pac Man, Asteroids, Boxing and Space Invaders!!! I was in heaven!! She even let me win a game! Tim, Kris and the rest of the fam could hear me squealing with delight all the way in the living room (and Tim even played a few games too!)

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I learned a new card game too, a group version of solitaire that I wasn’t great at in spite of Haydee’s patience in teaching me. 

I don’t just claim Kris’s other three kids, they thankfully claim me too! Karyn and her awesome boyfriend Alex came to join in the fun for dinner. They are both true gems and made for each other. Kendra came after work with her new man (to get our approval), and we approved!! They didn’t stay for dinner, but more than contributed to all the fun going on. It was pretty awesome stuff because Karyn and Kendra have turned into fabulous young women! Watching Karyn, Kendra and Haydee together and their “sister bond”, was heart warming and inspiring for me!

Last but not least, at the end of the evening young Bobby showed off his salesmen skills by talking us into some expensive cheese as part of one of those crazy school fundraisers!! But we couldn’t say no to Bobby because his sales pitch was impressive! So bring on the cheese!! Bobby is quite the man, in spite of having all those sisters!!! 

Without a doubt, it was one of best nights ever! We laughed, we ate, we played, we talked, and we hugged!! I hadn’t seen them in months, but once there, it felt like just yesterday. That’s the power and that love of our relationship at work!

I’ve always known that Godchildren really are gifts from God! But it was most gratifying to “see, feel and experience it” last night. I’m thankful for all of our Godkids – Bryanna, Jordan, Colin, Devin, Brandon, Kiernan, Haydee, and Samantha – and for how special they each and all make me feel. 

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What Labor Day Means to Me!

For me, Labor Day used to only signal two things. The end of summer and the first day of school the following day. Now that I’m over fifty years old, I feel much differently of course. In the family research I conducted for my book, I learned much more about the decades my family members spent toiling in mostly low paying positions, though they were worth much more. I never understood the difference between low or high wages as a kid, because my grandparents and my mom, with whom I lived, never complained about what they earned. They made me feel as if we were rich. I was surprised later in life to realize how little they had earned in their work lives, YET how much of their earnings they had actually saved.

I was taught to be grateful for having a job, and to work hard at every single task I took on. I was taught to go to work every day, unless there was a compelling reason not to. Today, I’m grateful for all of the different types of work I have – my professional work, my volunteer work, and especially my spiritual work. I don’t focus much on what I earn, I focus much more on what the Labor I’m doing actually means!!

I’ve also learned to mix in some fun with the labor. So I’m grateful for Kendal, Kim and Herb’s visit today. It allowed Tim and I to put the laptops down, and enjoy some family laughs and love. And I’m grateful that all of us have jobs that we actually love! 

 

I give many thanks and much praise to my Mom, for the Labor Day lessons she passed on to me, and for taking me to all of those Labor Day parades, even if I didn’t understand they were about much more than the marching bands! 

Back to work!!!  Happy Labor Day!