making the trek

Trekking through life: Faith, family, friends and a whole lot of coffee!

Parenting the bigs March 11, 2017

Filed under: encouragement,Friends,Kids,messy,Parenting,Uncategorized — tracye1 @ 10:12 AM

I was listening to one of my podcasts**  on my way to work, Girlfriends by Danielle Bean and one of the feedback messages she had was on the limited amount of blogs for the parents of the bigs…..teens and young adults and it got me to thinking.  So much thinking.  I don’t even think I can fit it ALL in on one post, because my head just doesn’t release my thoughts sometimes….but I’ll give it a try.

Here is where I date myself and on the same hand don’t even care.  (The blessings of the backside of 40, ladies….it is a gift!!)  The advent of technology has me absolutely feeling like an old lady though.  For example,   “back in my day we made friends at the park and playgroups, cell phones were a luxury and if you were dealing with parenting issues you reached out to your group of real life friends.”  You see, internet was sparse back in the old days.  Dial up.  Sloooooooow.  And it was so new that it was just weird–because it was different.  The thought that you could make a community of friends on the internet was just well….a thought best kept to yourself.

Fast forward 15 years and my GOODNESS how times have changed!!

There are amazing communities of faith filled women, Mamas who have been there and done that for advice and Mamas who are trudging through it in solidarity.  We have the double edged sword of social media with all it’s pretty pictures, real life messes, fun videos and videos of what’s really going down in the kitchen at the arsenic hour.  What an amazing and challenging time to be a parent, especially of littles.  The world of evangelization just leveled up, BIG TIME!  And it is a club that I’m not sure if I will ever feel feel comfortable in..trul:   I only snapchat my real life friends, barely instastory and keep my grams pretty tame…facebook, you are mostly dead to me.  True story.

And then you get into the season of the bigs.  At first, I thought that perhaps just not “coming of age” with the combination of internets and parenting makes me a little leary of all things world wide–the discomfort and unfamiliarity of it all.  However, I also found upon further reflection that these babies are now growing into young adults who want the internet on THEIR terms and not of their blogging mother.  And so I resist.  And then, I hear the feedback that reminded me there are so many ways to bless others with this technology and we can all use this to encourage and build up (even though we often see it turn on honesty and genuineness).  So, it’s a balance of protecting the privacy of your growing people and sharing in the gift and challenge of parenting—what works for others, tips and life hacks to grow in faith and realize that we AREN’T THE ONLY ONES dealing with x,  y, and z.

In the past, I have shared some of our trials in this season and have even written on the very painful time of our  son’s episodic struggle with anorexia-type issues and likely I will very soon write about our daughter’s recent depression recurrence.  The fear of being so transparent in a world wide arena holds me back though.  This past week, however, reminded me that we are NOT alone and if blogging helps me process and encourages someone else in the same battle then I will do it.  But first…..Imma gonna pray on the next post.

In the meantime, if you have a second, minute, hour, pray for Leticia Adams  and family whose son ended his battle with depression this week.

St. Dymphna, pray for us.

**Adventures in imperfect living by Greg and Jennifer Willets

Among Women by Pat Gohn

 

Authentic Sisterhood October 30, 2016

Filed under: encouragement,Friends,Life,Uncategorized — tracye1 @ 12:25 PM

We are completely out of our routine this Sunday.  Cheer competition has re-routed us.  The girls had to be there by 715 a.m. with hair done, and since I promised a ride to our girl’s BFF that meant out the door by 615 so that we could get to the arena in time to do BFF’s hair (she’s at her dad’s this weekend and needed assistance) and have them on time.  There will be no sleeping in this weekend.  Cue the violins.

So, Mass will be at 6pm tonight which freed up my morning.  Which I promptly filled up with a breakfast date with one of my dearest and oldest BFFs.  (I don’t have to be at the arena until 245pm so plenty of time!)  Sometimes we walk the bridge, paddleboard (ok, that was once, but it was really fun), have sushi or in today’s case:  breakfast.

It was a great breakfast and I realized how blessed I am in my authentic sisterhood.  The kind of friends who are there for you in a snap, the ones you share TMI with, the ones who will call you on your BS and hold you accountable to life and friendship, the ones who will pray with and for you, give you tough love and give you a shoulder.  There is no judgement, only love and truth.

In this life, we have friends spread far and wide and to get to that place of honesty and authenticity takes time and effort and cultivation.  It has taken me years to figure out that sometimes friends come and go and that is just life.  I no longer try to force friendships or do all the work.  It’s mutual effort or it does’t happen and that’s ok, too.  Authentic friends are there with you over the years even if you don’t talk every day or week, maybe visits are infrequent as well, but there is effort.  There is love.  There is a mutual desire to work at the honesty and truth and love that keeps that friendship a priority.

My Hubby is my best friend, confidante and encourager and that is huge and not often the case in marriage.  However, there is something inherently different and important in girlfriends and their point of view, their confidences shared and their encouragement.  Competition has no place in an authentic friendship only shared life.

Yes.  I am blessed.  Friendship with my mom and sister.  My “sisterhood”.  My friends that I’ve had since middle school and grade school.  Friends from early marriage and motherhood from church, from playgroups.  My Christmas list is long, but my true and blessed sisterhood is far smaller, but keepers for life.

Happy Sunday, friends!  Now go make that friend date this week, your heart and soul will thank you!

Proverbs 17:17 A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.

 

Seasons of friendship July 13, 2014

Filed under: Changes,Friends,Gratitude,Life — tracye1 @ 12:00 AM
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I am blessed with friends.  So very, very rich in friendships going all the way back to early elementary where I still keep in touch with friends from the old neighborhood.  I collect friends along the way.  Cherish them.  Keep in touch.  It’s why I send so many Christmas cards and the dang post office sure keeps me saving my pennies so I can continue to do so.

Friendships have many seasons though.

Right now I am in a dry season.  We are in a dry season.  Not to say we are out of friends, but merely because life is so busy.  Everyone.  So. Busy.  We are just in a season in our life where our kids keep us rockin’ and rollin’ and that’s not going to stop anytime soon and guess what?  Our friends.   They’re in the same season.  With their kids.

Of course, we live 4-7 hours from our dearest friends and so I think sometimes we just feel it more acutely.  The friends we have here are nice, but so very different in beliefs and seasons in life than we are and so it puts us in a weird place.

Someone once told me that the friends you make when your children are very young are friends for life.  I agree.  I just wish we weren’t so dang spread out.  That we would get more visitors.  That money wasn’t always an issue and we could go nilly willy and visit whoever and whenever we pleased.  That life would slow down a little.  But then, that IS life isn’t it?  Always ebb and flow. Change and change again.  It’s the way it is.

I’ll likely take a trip north in a couple of weeks to visit friends and hope to get in a maximum number of hugs and chats in my always too short trip.  I’m scheduled to shoot across to the state another weekend to have some one-on-one with an old friend.  It’s all good.  I’ll take what I can get, when I can get it and soak it in.

 

The birthday that lasted a Week! June 22, 2014

Filed under: Changes,Friends,Kids,Life,Photos — tracye1 @ 7:50 PM
Tags: , , , , ,

Our  youngest turned 11 last week, however, her birthday had the misfortune to fall during a tremendously hectic weekend and so we dragged out a few celebrations in order to celebrate a joyous day, as every birthday should, and to also celebrate with the family in entirety.

  • On her actual birthday, we celebrated in the morning with a giant cinnamon bun from Publix for breakfast and opening of cards and gifts.
  • The next day at Mass we celebrated with a hoot and holler (thanks, Dad!) after Mass during visitor/birthday and anniversary announcements and hot dogs and pool time for Father’s Day at Popop’s
  • Monday, we celebrated with the annual birthday dinner of choice (Chinese takee outee) and family birthday cake (made by joint effort of big brother and sis–Red Velvet delicious!)
    what's not to love about this?  #framer

    what’s not to love about this? #framer

    cake

  • This weekend we finished up with a Mystery birthday Party (gotta love Dramatic Fanatic) and friends….with the men of the house vacating for the afternoon.
    Detective/Suspect Interviews...Who done it??

    Detective/Suspect Interviews…Who done it??

    The final table...thank YOU Pinterest..camp fire flames and s'mores chex mix for the win!

    The final table…thank YOU Pinterest..camp fire flames and s’mores chex mix for the win!

‘Twas a good day that the girls both had a Girl Scout event at the local water park after Mass for a relatively peaceful afternoon .

No complaints, yo!

 

Icing on the cake June 9, 2014

Last weekend we celebrated our 20th Anniversary with a vow renewal and gathering afterward…you can see more about that here, but the thing I loved the most was being surrounded by our family and friends.  Now.  There are some of you reading this that might be sad because you missed it (and it WAS great), BUT this is NOT a slight or rant on you missing it.  It was our fortune to be married in June.  Who knew that 20 years later June would be the month of finishing school, graduations and the general crazy busy that ends school and begins summer?  Who?  Not my 24-year-old bride self, that’s for sure.  Anyhoo…….as much as we would have LOVED to have each and every one of our family and friends present, it’s just not a reality.  Life and all that.    That said……

The people who were supposed to be there were.  It was a neat gathering.  ALL of our kids (and with our 16 yo’s recent crisis of faith–that says a lot).  Many of Hubby’s AA friends came, and that is a diverse group of pretty cool people.  Truly.  We had friends come from church, and for the few friends we have there….that was a nice feeling.  Hubby’s parents were there.  Probably one of the very few times my father in law made it to church.   A continued grace in healing of a strained relationship.  My grandparents were there, right up front with us and my grandmother kept her claustrophobia at bay so that they could be on the front lines where they have always been.  Fraternity brothers, to which I can never say enough good about this group of guys.  Friends from our old city who drove 4 hours for a date weekend; this was an extra special because of the time we were able to spend with them the night before catching up.

My fear of getting up in front of the ENTIRE.  9 A.M. MASS. to renew our vows was real.  When Hubs started getting emotional prior to Mass, he almost brought me over the edge (so I had to threaten him with bodily harm and eggplant…he doesn’t like eggplant).  During the ceremony, I remembered our priest’s advice and just kept my eyes on Hubs, and the priest.  It worked.  Thankfully I followed those instructions because toward the end I snuck a peek at the parishioners and holy cow!  The looks of love and sweet smiles on their faces.  NOW I know why our church opts for this manner of vow renewal.  Talk about a witness.  I would never have made it had I looked out.  Also, the fact that our only response was “I do” rather than repeat the entire wedding vows was a HUGE help.  Death by publicly speaking heart-felt vows and all.

The graces were real.  The love was real.  The friends are real.  The icing on the cake.

Now hopefully life will get real and get our friends here throughout the summer for some visitin’!!!

 

20 years…let’s do it again! June 1, 2014

the young newleywedsI’m still processing a beautiful morning but for my friends and family who couldn’t make it to our 20 year Anniversary Vow Renewal…a few pics.

I have more pics.  I have more words.  Perhaps later this week.  I’ve got lots of words.  After 20 years I’ve got LOTS to say on marriage.  I’m thinking a little marriage series.  Like I said.  Processing.  For now.  You’ve got this.

9 a.m. Mass and BOOM right in the middle….a little vow renewal.  In front of God and everyone.  Again.  Neither of us cried.  Neither of us got the usual hysterical nervous giggles.  Neither of us passed out.  All good.  All.  Good.

Enjoy!

close flowers

 

drink station

food

 

IG

 

Celebrate: ME!! My birthday post! May 16, 2014

Woman, you lost it.  You’ve got enough candles on that cake to burn down the whole flippin’ house and you celebrate?  Yup.  44 and totally going to enjoy it.  Life’s too short, people.  So, imma gonna seize the WHOLE day. And join in Jen for some Quick Takes.  Because I can.  So, enjoy….my

7qts

url

  1. But first…

    Let me take a selfie....straight out of bed, fresh cut yesterday...love new 'do...or same 'do, fresh cut.

    Lemmee take a selfie….straight out of bed, fresh cut yesterday…love new ‘do…or same ‘do, fresh cut.

  2. I took the day off today (and so did Hubs) and our sweet little sicky who I blogged about yesterday, had a miraculous healing!!  Woot, woot!!!  Happy birthday to ME!!!  Off to school, my little cherub.  I know, totally crazy and selfish move, right?  Well, that’s how I roll around here as evidenced by the FIRST BIRTHDAY I have ever even taken the day off for (that I remember anyway….things are a little foggy sometimes….send gingko wouldya?).  Anyhooooo, as I enjoyed my morning coffee ofcoffee
  3. I spied this little loveliness on the back porch.
    New plants!  And new pots!!  Be still my heart.  Sweet Hubs.  Totally rocked it!!

    New plants! And new pots!! Be still my heart. Sweet Hubs. Totally rocked it!!

     

  4. Then this:
    chocolate, too???  What the???  He is totally racking up Hubby points, here.

    A card and chocolate, too??? What the??? He is totally racking up Hubby points, here.

     

  5. Of course I still have Facebook to keep up with today (such fun all those birthday wishes, worth holding off purging the list for a while), several early texts and phone calls (since I’m off I can actually talk on the phone today….unless I’m in the pool or riding my bike on the beach…) and then this awesome pile of snail mail to savor later!!
    Love cards.  And presents.  It's my love language.

    Love cards. And presents. It’s my love language.

     

  6. Yesterday at work my awesome work peeps had a chip and dip celebration followed by jello cake topped with cool whip.  Homemade crab dip and Hand chopped with love and claw inducing mango salsa by my bestie work bud!)  Delicious, it was breakfast and lunch….dips
  7. But, lest you think it’s all awesome food, no responsibilities, flowers and chocolate….I’m still a Mama and regular life still goes on.  And it’s all good!!

    In honor of MY birthday, I am showing an act of mercy and doing the boy's laundry.  Told you I am a selfish B....just keepin' it real!

    In honor of MY birthday, I am showing an act of mercy and doing the boy’s laundry. Told you I am a selfish B….just keepin’ it real!

 

Have a great day, y’all!!

 

 

 
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