Everyone needs a role model

Have you been watching the Olympics? It’s pretty impressive what all of these athletes can do with their bodies and their brains and while I’m not a sports person AT ALL, I’m all for kids and adults alike looking up to athletes. They work hard and if this YouTube video is any indication – they play hard too.

But I’m not here on a Sunday to talk about the Olympics or the validity of athletes as role models, or pop stars, authors, or anyone else for that matter.

Nope. This Sunday post is for Ginger Mom and Ginger Dad! Today is their 40th wedding anniversary. 40 years is a long freakin’ time and worthy of  a Sunday post at the very least.

My parents have a love story that, as they like to say, only works 40 years ago. “if you did what we did – we would worry. The world’s just not the same.” I don’t know about that – part of me thinks if Mom’s parents weren’t distracted by 9 other children they’d have been a little worried too!

Mom headed to Northern Ontario, (further North than we are now – I know it seems impossible) to mend a broken heart. She stayed with family and they introduced her to a bean pole ginger in thick black-rimmed glasses with huge, HUGE muttonchops. Who would have thought that would be just her type!

They spent the week or maybe 2 together that summer and then Mom headed back to civilization.

They chatted on the phone, and Dad met the family at Christmas. Imagine pulling up to a house with 9 kids arranged by height staring at you in the front window. He passed the test and they started talking about marriage.

Disappointed that they couldn’t get it together by Valentine’s Day, they took things slow and got married in August instead.

A year may not seem like a super short time to go from “my name is” to “I do” – but what about 6 weeks? Does that seem short? Because 6 weeks is all the time they spent together in the same city.

6 weeks.

6 weeks and then Mom left civilization and moved to Northern Ontario.

It seems to have worked out for them though since its forty years later and they’re still going strong.

Mom and Dad have been awesome role models for my siblings and me. They love each other and their family. The only fight I remember them having when we were kids was about cheese. I’m pretty sure it wasn’t about cheese but I remember thinking at the time – they never fight and they’re fighting about cheese? Weird.

They taught us to love our partners first. Speak to each other with kindness. Laugh a lot. And how to work in a true partnership.

Whenever The Boy is away for the weekend or we find we’re on opposite schedules, my Mom says “don’t worry that you’re spending a lot of time apart. It’s good for your marriage. You should both have your own lives.” Dad seems to agree – but then Dad always agrees (maybe that’s a secret to success too!)

The Boy and I might only be in our first year of marriage, and 40 seems like a long what away. But that’s the great thing about role models – they let you know what’s possible.

Congratulations on your 40th anniversary Mom and Dad!



We’re Havin’ a Party!

Well, we had a party.  A party for family and our wedding party.  It was a few weeks ago now, but it was Awesome!

My parents hosted an Engagement party for us.  Yes, we’ve been engaged for a while now, but we had yet to officially celebrate so celebrate we did.

The party was awesome obviously, but that’s not terribly interesting for folks that weren’t there, and for the kids that were – they know it was awesome… they were there.

So instead, a list of things I learned from our Engagement Party.  We have a few more showers and such coming up so I’m certain this list will come in handy, become a living document and by W-day The Boy and I will be party professionals.

  1. Invite small children.  Small children are awesome.  But the best part is they are super excited to open presents.  This means that when you are asked to awkwardly open all of the lovely things people have brought you – you can somewhat avoid the spotlight as the small children take over all opening duties and become the focus of attention.  Be careful though – some things are breakable so it’s mandatory that you keep close watch and perhaps a hand underneath whatever glassware their little hands are unraveling.
  2. Eat.  This was quite possibly the biggest lesson I learned.  Because there were so many people my mom thought it would be easier to have many many many plates of appetizers out instead of a full sit down meal.  Good idea.  While everyone was keeping close watch on my wine glass making sure it was never empty for long – the same attention was not being paid to my tummy.  I was STARVING! But with so many people wanting to chat and being bustled here and there, I felt myself continually missing the food.  Solution? Next time I’m planning on eating before the party starts, and putting someone in charge of making sure I eat.  On W-day there will be lunch waiting for us after the ceremony during pictures.  We will eat.  A lot.
  3. The Boy needs to eat too – mostly see above, but also because The Boy drinks beer which we all know is quite filling he wasn’t feeling as hungry as I was.  That is, he didn’t notice that he hadn’t really eaten anything until everyone left and it became quickly evident he was feeling no pain.
  4. Sista is the best MoH ever.  My mom’s family is huge and my sista and I have been dragged gladly attended any and all wedding and baby showers.  We’ve watched as MoH’s and BFFs have written gift details in cards.  It was finally Sista’s time to put all that research into practice and she did not disappoint.  She was all over it, and it was so WONDERFULLY helpful. Her attention to detail made Thank You cards a breeze and I was able to send all of them out within a week – that’s got to be some kind of record!
  5. Prepare a few words.  In the week leading up to our party The Boy kept asking me if I knew what I was going to say.  Each time I gave him the same response, “Yes, I’m going to say ‘Thank you everyone for coming and celebrating with us… the Boy has a few words he’d like to say.'”  Then he’d laugh at me and say “I’m not saying anything it’s YOUR family YOU have to talk!”  Turns out, that’s as far as I got, since once it was time to say something I realized I hadn’t really given it a lot of thought and so my thank you was less than graceful.  As a result I have started to collect thoughts for each event still to come.  I don’t plan on reading anything but it would be nice if I remembered to thank the people who throw the party!

And that’s it.  That’s my survival guide so far.

Highlights included:

  • The delicious cupcakes one of my aunts made. (so I heard anyway – I didn’t get one)
  • Asking the last of our readers to participate.  (I’ll post that later)
  • The Boy’s rant that I “didn’t let him speak” after everyone had left.
  • My Mom telling the Boy, “I’ve heard this one before” after he kept repeating that I didn’t let him speak.
  • Paul making a mess of an apple cheesecake and then five minutes later having NO recollection of making said mess, responding to inquiries with “I love apples I would never do that to an apple!”
  • Receiving Dance Lessons from my siblings.
  • Sista telling me that she and her man friend were going to come dancing with us – though he didn’t know that yet.

Finally, you may recall that my parents moved last year from my childhood home.  When The Boy and I got engaged my Mom was sad that I wouldn’t be getting ready in my house, and that they had thrown so many parties at old house and our party wouldn’t be there.  I can say with authority now that it’s not bricks that make a home.  Wherever the people are – that’s what matters.

Thank you again Mom and Dad


Oh wait – one more tip…

6.  Ask people to send their pictures to me! This is the only one I’ve got – at least it’s a good one!!

This lovely lady was one to make sure I had something to eat! That's A+ w-party skills!