Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Past, Present and Future


A whole new decade...Year of the Rat...I cannot believe its 2020! In 8 days I am moving into my 6th decade on the planet...CRAZY! No I mean it, really, really crazy!!! The passing of time boggles my mind. Not so long ago we were partying like it was 1999!!! I have learned many life lessons in these 60 years ... some harder than others... but I embrace and have enjoyed the journey so far...when I look back a young me... I never saw certain things coming... I guess that is the blessing of youth.

The past seems not so far away...so many of my memories feel like they happened just yesterday, and some things that happened just a few years ago seem like a lifetime ago.

So much joy and happiness, these memories come often and bring a smile and make me grateful daily. I cannot preach enough about  the value of Joy and happiness... Lately you see the quote "Choose Happy" everywhere... I have made that a conscious decision since I was about 12... that is when  I realized only I have the power to change my destiny... it was an epiphany for me...from that age on,  I always chose to let the bad go and move forward in a positive direction.

So many losses, in the last 5 decades I have lost so many people I have loved deeply, their memories bring both tears and joy. I am a better me for having had each of them in my life. I am a very fortunate woman for having known such love, and friendships. I count my blessings daily.

A Million Mistakes made...I always tell my kids "mistakes are for learning", if we don't make mistakes we don't learn by them. I have made a few...and many, many lessons learned.

People come and go...there have been so many who have entered and then exited my life. It's funny that you never expect that to happen when you are young. But I have found that not all friends are meant to be in your life forever, and that is OK. We all change and some are only meant to be there for a minute. I feel like I have an embarrassment of riches in this department. When the going got tough... my people showed up and continue to grace me with their beautifulness...To quote Ted... I am a lucky girl.

I am a  "live in the moment " kind of person...  I enjoy each day, and try to really be in the moment... sometimes I fail, but mostly I try to be really present. I have learned from past events, that life is too short, not to sound cliche, but tomorrow is not guaranteed. Sometimes its difficult, but mostly I just need to remind myself...So I say yes! Do everything! Go everywhere! Meet new people! Put yourself out there! Be open! Show up for others!( this one is most important)  Be kind!  Show up for yourself! That last piece...  I am the worst at...the showing up for me, self care, I'm learning.  I'm thinking 2020 is my year for that. More self care.

And I have so much hope for the future. There are some amazing folks doing really amazing things, many of them I count as friends. I focus on that and not the other newsie, negative sound bites I hear on a continuous loop.  There are so many cool, smart, artistic, talented, motivated, entrepreneurial, positive, kind, caring, movers and shakers that are working hard to change things, locally, nationally and globally...I want to be a part of that, and that is what I want to listen to. 2020 I'm focusing on that.

Like the Rat I am optimistic that the coming year will be full of kindness, compassion, love, and  forward moving, positive energy.

Happy New year to you, I wish you luck, and  when luck seems elusive... the ability to turn lemons into lemonade. I hope you  never lose your thirst for knowledge and growth. I hope you always have   the ability to see the good and do good. There really is so much good... I'm manifesting that ... GOODNESS in 2020!

Welcome 2020...my year...year of the RAT!
 ( ironic that the rat is my Chinese Zodiac sign, yet  I am HUGELY petrified of rodents!)

Saturday, September 14, 2019

September 14...64!




Today would have been Teds 64th birthday. I imagine we would be talking about how he could retire next year, ( But he wouldn't) how OLD he was ( cause he would be!), where we should be planning his 65 birthday trip ( I imagine back to Hillside Villa in Jamaica, because he loved it there so)  etc.

Last year I came across these pics from his time teaching at the Deck House School in Edgecomb ME. These are way before we met, but these capture so well,  the essence of Ted... and they remind me that our children are Ted ambassadors...they embody so many of his qualities. So my birthday wish for Ted is ...I hope you can see how awesome your kiddos are... still, just getting better with age! And thank you for them. Without a doubt our best work!
 
Happy Birthday Cappy!
I Love You and Miss You every day. 

Thursday, September 12, 2019

BESTIES




Besties... everyone should have one... I have a few, awesome women whom I depend deeply, confide everything, cry with laugh with and could not have gone thru most of my life things,  without their support and love.

My Aunt Connies Birthday was celebrated a few days ago... she has been my aunt, for my entire life, not my moms sister,  but my moms bestie... besties since childhood. To say I love this woman is understatement. She is strong, kind, fun, loyal, deeply family oriented and simply a beautifully awesome human being.
To have had her as one of my "Mom" role models growing up has definitely influenced my momming game.

And the fun factor... AC always brings her A Game... Here is a little clip from her granddaughter Sarah's wedding.... Dancing with my brother Chris... I also have found memories of these 2 dancing at my wedding some 30 years ago.  I hope to see these two dance at many more family wedding to come!  Love you Aunt Connie.. Happiest of Birthdays to you.XOXOXOXOX


Sunday, June 16, 2019

And on the eve of year 6...Happy Fathers day Cappy

Six  Years tomorrow...and today, on the eve of the day you left us,  I am reminded so wonderfully who you were, by these images of your children. You would be so proud Ted. T-Moe took this semester off to re-evaluate and re-energize. He left school and a lacrosse team of guys he really loved, to make choices that best suited  him. I watched thru his college career, as he shared time in goal at Goucher, and always felt you there.  I watched  him as the starting goalie at Merrimack and playing in a National title game, and you were there.  I also watched as he sat on the bench, but instead of being mad and bitter,  I watched him rise up and lift up the team and be a really, really good teammate. This I know was guided by you. And now that decisions have been made,  I look forward to his next year (as he "comes out of retirement", as he says) at a new school,  back on the field, doing what he loves. All the choices he has made, not easy, but I am so proud of the man we raised.

I watched as T-Moe coached youth and HS teams thru the winter, reffed 10 games at the 7th Annual Ted Hellier Laxfest, and then as he took on his first HS coaching gig, enjoying the moments just like you.  Just look at that stance... no denying who he takes after, minus the keg! (For those of you who don't know...Ted affectionately referred to his growing mid section as a keg instead of a 6pack)  



And your girl... her compassion and drive... You! Her life choices, its like you are right  here guiding her. She reminds me of you so much. When she's frustrated with the dogs... she Ted pets them... its crazy! Her talent in the kitchen...you. Her early rise to start the day...you... I know she misses her morning buddy so much. Unlike you however ...she hates to get her pic taken... that she gets from me!


So as Zaz and I watched T-Moe in action as NYA's assistant coach, yesterday in the State Championship game, we got a glimpse of you. 

He is passionate about the game...like you,


 he cares about his players...like you


 He enjoys the moment...like you



He is a hugger...like you


he is happy for others successes...like you


he is a team player... like you. You taught him that lesson very well.


All these reminders yesterday, that the best things we ever did... are STILL  the best things we ever did. And I am so grateful to you for them. I am so happy I get to see YOU in them each day. Some days, like yesterday, it just screams you more than others. I am ever so grateful and joy filled for  days like these. You my dear are forever in our hearts, and missed more than I thought possible. Happy Fathers Day Cappy!



Sunday, June 2, 2019

7th Annual


It is hard to believe Seven years ago, was the first Ted Hellier Laxfest... as many of you already know, Ted was quite ill at the time, but he was so  determined to make an appearance at the festival. He was able to attend, that very first Laxfest... and his energy and spirit has been felt at every one since. He may no longer be with us physically,  but boy oh boy do we feel him at this festival every year. Today the 7th annual Ted Hellier LaxFest, was no different. It has come to be one of my favorite days of the year, for so many reasons.




I love the energy of the day.. Friday night before the Fest... volunteers meet to set up the field, hang banners, place signs, and meet food trucks. All the months of planning are realized and everyone is so on it!  At 6am on Saturday... all the tired Varsity and JV lacrosse players groggily head to the complex to help set up the fields. These boys comically work together to get the huge tent set up ... each year it is something to watch... seeing who takes the lead, how many opinions it takes, technique styles.  How many lacrosse players does it take to raise a tent? It is  like watching the 3 stooges, but more like 18 stooges! This year with Heather at the helm... the quickest tent raising ever!!! Once the tent is set,  all the Varsity players get ready to either  Ref lots of games, man the Speedball,  or do whatever the volunteer coordinator asks of them, while the JV ready themselves for 3 good games of lacrosse.  The  parents of these players and past players also show up at 6am... coffee fueled to get the show on the road, and by 7am when teams start arriving, everything is in place and running smoothly. Everyone just happy to be here and ready to spend a day outside and around LOTS of Lacrosse games.










 THE LOVE OF LACROSSE... Its different than any other sport I have been involved with...Ted always encouraged his youth players to play both Lacrosse and Baseball... heck, Ted was a huge baseball fan, but he knew as the boys got older, there would come a time when there would  not enough room on a baseball team for all the athletic talent. He was sure the lure of the fastest game on two feet,  would woo many of them to the game... he was not wrong. He would always say... "there is room on a lacrosse team for every kid".
 Ted, was a believer in his players, all of his players, he had a way of communicating with them... not yelling, not ignoring, not belittling, no passive aggression... just respect, he was a believer that you had to give respect to get it.



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For the Love of my husband... a lacrosse fest of this size is a huge deal to organize and run. It takes many, many planning hours, so many volunteers, a ton of sponsors, lots of teams from all over New England (showing up to get their game on),  logistical snafus that need to be dealt with at the last minute, weather issues beyond our control and just stuff... it happens when coordinating an event with over 1000 atteendees. But for the LOVE of TED... all the pieces fall into place, folks understand that things happen, Volunteers rise to the occasion and spend more time than scheduled, do tasks they have never done before, all with a smile on their faces and  all for the Love of Lacrosse and the love of Ted.




This year for me marks the last of "Teds boys" The age group below was his favorite to coach... he got to see raw talent... help them channel energy and develop a passion... all the good sweet parts of coaching... for the purity and love of a sport. Many of the boys in the photo below have recently graduated or will be graduating this year.  A shout out to all of them... for making Coach Teds time with you all,  such a joy... it was his honor to watch you all grow, and become great young adults. His time on the field with you all was treasured by him and I thank you all.


I personally look forward to watching you all, in Your HS careers, college years and beyond...



and until next years Laxfest... "Play well young fellas"!


Tuesday, January 1, 2019

the past 51 days of 365

Happy New Year! I am  112 days into my 365 a day drawings. for those who are stuck, in a rut or rusty... I highly recommend this exercise.
Some I really, really like, some... eh and some I see potential in using elements in other pieces. Thanks for looking, I am always intrigued at what folks respond to... for 23 years I made art for a living and was always thrilled when a customer connected with a piece, be it an illustration, a piece of clothing or a card! Thanks for looking, Hope you enjoy.