The Loss Of A Great Grandparent

    This past week, we received word that my Great-Grandmother passed away in Spain.  She was well into her nineties and had been bed-ridden for the past few years due to severe Rheumatoid Arthritis and Alzheimer's.  In the wake of her death I find myself reflecting on her life and thinking about the legacy of the family that she left behind.     We called her "Madrina" which means "godmother" in Spanish.  The reason for this is that she baptized my father and was actually his godmother so, since he always called her that, the name stuck.  She came from a time when women worked in the fields alongside their husbands and never complained about anything.  I remember her telling me the story of how she gave birth in the old house, upstairs from where they kept the cows.     Back when I was a kid, I remember feeling like she was really old fashioned and like I couldn't relate to her.  She dressed in black as was customary for widows back in the day in Spain and always wore a kerchief … [Read more...]

Gone too soon…

           Jarrett and my oldest son at one of our many family gatherings.     I'm sure many of you have noticed that I have not posted much this week and that I really haven't been around on any social networking sites. Unfortunately, my family suffered a devastating loss last weekend when a young man who was near and dear to us was brutally taken from us through a senseless act of violence. It is really hard to wrap your head around something like this or to accept that the life of such a promising young man could be just cut short in its prime. I could not even bring myself to put it into words because that somehow made it more real and, as a result, I deliberately stayed as far away from my blog as possible this whole week.     Jarrett was just loved by everyone who knew him.  He was always willing to help anyone in any situation and he was so caring and respectful of others.  It has always been wonderful to see these qualities in him when so many young people these days are … [Read more...]