Life

Peace and Purpose

Do you ever find yourself catching glimpses into other peoples lives and thinking “Wow, I should be doing something like that.” Or are you ever faced with a task that seems so mundane and so repetitive that you think man I really should be living a more adventurous or fulfilling life. Or maybe you just feel like when you are doing one thing there are a million so much more important things in this world that you should be doing at that very moment.

I am so that way. I always feel like I should be doing everything all at once and it should all be super important and very official and so on and so forth. But to be honest with you I’ve never had any huge life goals or ambitions. I don’t mean that I’m lazy or an underachiever. I was a highly involved individual in high school with good grades and I entered so many clubs as well as held positions in those clubs. As an adult I have been highly involved in many activities and a leader in some of those as well. But when it comes down to a real life job all I ever really wanted to do was help people.

I remember in grade school doing an assignment that required us to write down what we wanted to be when we grow up. I think we’ve all had at least a dozen of those assignments. I remember distinctly being very worried and concerned that there was something wrong with me. Because I did not want to be a movie star or an artist or a ballet dancer. I wanted to help people. That’s it.

When I look around at others who are very successful it’s hard not to feel the pang of jealousy. I could have done so many things, yet I did not. I know that God has put them on this earth to do the job that they have before them and that’s awesome. I am happy for them. And I want them to succeed in a huge way. But that was never for me.

In high school friend of mine and I went to a model and talent search in Seattle Washington. Her mother drove us and we were all high excitement and adventure. Talent search! We were on our way to fame and fortune. So we enter the building and each took our respective tests and waited for our hidden talents to be discovered. I was entering the model competition. And my friend was wanting to do the commercial portion. Ironically, we both got call backs but in the opposite categories! She was called back for the model search and I was called back to do another commercial.

We opted out of the call back because we were both pretty pooped by then and it was a long day. It would’ve been fun to see what had come of it but I knew in my heart that it wasn’t something that I really wanted to pursue. I did not want to be on TV or to be famous. I didn’t want to waste my time chasing a dream that may not become a reality and that wouldn’t satisfy me anyways.

Now as an adult I can see my kids growing and getting ready to move out and start their own lives. I wonder if being a mother and being a wife and giving all of that energy to others has been wasted. But when I look at my kids and my husband I think how could I have chosen to miss this?

I’m in a transition right now with life in general. Things have definitely changed in the last few years for me. I’m no longer an all day every day turbo charged woman. I am decidedly slower and much less energetic. It’s not my favorite. I miss being a doer. But I am embracing what I can and cannot do.

My son is entering adulthood and now I’m having to help him figure out adult things. It’s not always easy. But my kids know that I put them first and that I love them so very much and would help them in anyway that I can. To have them come to me with their problems and know that they can trust me to support them and to guide them to the best of my ability is priceless.

Beyond that I’m just really thankful that God has given me an opportunity to be available to just be a friend to so many people that need a friend. I am not perfect. I am not super smart. I am not super talented. But I am one super awesome friend!

And you know what being a friend means? It means helping people. I help people in little ways. I watch their babies, I make them dinner, I hold their hand and I listen to them cry on the phone. I’m not moving mountains. I’m not doing great things but I was made for a purpose and that is to be a help.

I did a lot of life on my own and sometimes if I overthink it bitterness can creep in. But I realized that in order to fulfill my purpose in life I would need to be the person that I wish I had. It’s amazing what peacefulness I have found in this simple revelation.

Wishing you all the good things❤️

-Veronica

Being Mama, Get Happy!, Health

Are You There Self?

Internal locus of control or external locus of control… that is the question. (a.k.a. are you motivated by outside influences or your own drive) I once wrote a college paper on this subject and was completely anxiety riddled at the amount of research and the new (to me) format that I was required to learn in a very short time frame. I had written only a couple of 10 page papers in high school that were always essay style. My first college paper was a 15 pager in APA format that I had never encountered before. It was a hurdle to be sure. I did piles of research and yes, my outline was 100% essay but when I sat down to actually write I cranked it out in 2 days more or less ( in between other classes). I have never been more proud of an A before. And I still wonder how much I actually understood what I wrote. 🙄

Today the question still pops up in my mind. What motivates me? What is driving the machine that is me? Do I allow whatever others think to cause me to act? Am I operating in my own best interest? And the greater question still, am I living in a way that is motivated by a love for God?

I am by nature curious and introspective. I want to live my best life – all the way. So, I am always thinking about my current methods and what does and doesn’t work to achieve that. Recently I went through a very dark time. I wouldn’t say I was depressed but I had certainly been leaning that way. My body was sapped. I had allowed my lack of personal boundaries and self care to deteriorate me to the point that I was in a horrible state of mind mentally and constantly fatigued. I felt like I was living only to fill others needs. I slept a LOT. As in, if it wasn’t necessary I did not leave my bed. I still loved my family and helping others but my body quit giving and I was flat out tired of other people’s needs ALWAYS being first. To make matters worse, I often found out that those who alway seemed to need something could have very easily completed the task without me. I needed to find my value. I needed to care about me.

Selfish? No, I just needed myself. Everyone else had gotten my help but there was precious little coming back my direction. Something had to change.

And so I did the unthinkable. I quit giving. I stopped being available. I said no. Did I like it? No, it killed me to turn people down. I wanted to go to every birthday and donate at every fundraiser and volunteer at every function. But I began to set limits. Right away my family balked. How dare I not take them here, or fetch this or make that! What a horrible person I was for allowing them to suffer natural consequences as a result of their own thoughtlessness! How selfish of me to make room for my needs in the family budget!

And the horror continued….I stepped back at work, I requested help for seemingly simple things, I relaxed, I rested, I began to heal. I got a lot of questioning glances and a few persistent requests until I finally just said I’m not available all year. I had hung the do not disturb sign over my face and I began the task of rebuilding my health and sanity. And you know what? Everyone survived without me.

My husband is the opposite of me in so many ways. But we both are driven from the inside. His motor runs quite a bit slower than mine but when we are focused on what is important to us it WILL be accomplished. I love that we are both doers. But I had to reestablish my boundary lines even in our marriage. I had to be more careful with myself. In every relationship I drew lines. Some just got the axe all together. I’m not investing where there are no returns. Sorry, it’s nothing personal, I just don’t have the physical energy or the head space for it. After the hormonal tornado that I’ve been through I can see how people can “snap”. Good people, under too much pressure. Too many outside ideas and needs pushing out the person inside.

Recently I had an opportunity to test how firm my boundaries were. I was dumped into a situation and called the offender out. A highly volatile offender to boot. Did I bend? No, I didn’t. I was actually kind of proud of myself. I stood up for me. I valued my time and my rest. I was not going to be forced into doing another person’s duty simply because they wanted me to. Nope, not anymore.

Don’t get me wrong. I want to help. I want to be a part and give all I can-just not to the detriment of my own well being. If you are a born people pleaser then it might be time to re-evaluate. Sooner rather than later. I can tell you from experience it’s not pretty when you omit self care for too long. I hope this helps someone.

Questions for self evaluation:

What is important to you?

What do you value?

Who/what gives back in your life?

How can you invest in yourself a little each day?

What are your limits?

Love,

Veronica

*disclaimer*

If you know me personally – don’t take this personally!❤️

If you know me well, I think you’ll see it for what it is❤️

Being Mama, Family, Farm, Kids

Fair?

This week is fair week. That might mean nothing to many people. But for us that means we are hauling our selves and our goats ( along with all necessary food and gear) to the local fair grounds so our animals and kids can show their stuff. It’s fun, dirty, hot and exasperating all in the same dry and windy breath.

As a show mom it is my primary responsibility to have all kids ( human and animal) fully prepared to do their best. Well, surgery kinda laid me out this year so I was a little weak on the giddy up. No matter, here we are – we made it! We stuck it out and are ready to compete. Saturday will be the auction and it can’t get here fast enough for this mama!

Don’t get me wrong, I love the very essence of animal husbandry and 4H has my whole heart. But, … let’s be real- it has me wanting to kick all my kids out and hide myself in a dark closet where no one can find me. Except maybe the Schwann’s man…and only if he’s delivering those silver dollar bars.

Let me introduce you to the cast of characters for fair 2019 starting with the 4 legged kids:

*Spike* if you could imagine a laid back Cali cool surfer dude in the form of a goat that would be Spike. He loves everybody man! He’s chillax to the max and loves hugs. He’s my favorite and I don’t mind admitting it. My only regret is that market animals have a short life span. Sorry dude, you will be missed!

*Fighty* Mike Tyson who? Fighty has entered the ring! Got food? He’ll fight you for it! Got hay? He’ll fight you for that too! Opening the gate? You guessed it! He’ll fight to be first out….unless, of course he doesn’t want to go out and then he will fight you to stay in. The winner for most consternating attitude goes to Fighty! Yup, everyone is a winner here! 😝 Good thing you’re cute kid!

*Skidder* This is the first time I have encountered a goat with anxiety. Skidder prefers to be restrained in a stall. The more secure the better. In fact, he will voluntarily jump on the grooming stand to be strapped down. It’s the only time he stops hyperventilating….drama much? Oh Skidder…. He also got his name from his habit of falling flat on the ground when you walk him and then going completely bezerk when you try to lift him back up. Skidder won’t be missed😏

Now for the 2 legged kids-

*Boy child of 16 years* Headstrong and physically strong this young male specimen is showing signs of independence and a distinct parting of ways from the matriarchal system. (Read: won’t listen to his mother) in all fairness he is maturing and growing daily. We have had many talks …. a few lectures…. and have learned a lot about each other this year. I’m taking the win here and leaving the goats totally out of the equation. Boom, #winning

*Girl child of 14 years* This lady is observant and able to get by nearly on her own. She sees what goes on and learns from others without much instruction. Which is good because she is also teening out on me at times and not always so receptive to mother’s suggestions *ahem!* I’m pretty proud of her and all that she is learning. Again, win.

*Girl child of 10 years* Um…..well, this one is a first year 4Her and acts like she’s got this thing. She was giving the big kids tips and reminders. I had to remind her that she had never done this before. Didn’t faze her. She is a cocky little bugger. My greatest task with her will be to point her in the right direction and keep the reins in hand.🙄 For her performance really isn’t a concern. Life is her party and she gets freebies from all the booths and candy galore. She’s thrilled. Win.

The problem is….. I am highly competitive. And a perfectionist (albeit I have been somewhat reformed). And I came into this deal with zero experience. Like, I had a cat for a few months once when I was a kid. So, all in all the deck was entire stacked against me. Add to that an antsy teenage son who spends a lot of time out of the house on odd jobs, a major surgery (mine), and 2 out of 3 animals that were impossible even on their good days. 🙄 And have I mentioned that I live in a small town and I know my friends kids are also our competition. It’s tough to smile at your friends successes when your pride is wounded. But we do because we are beyond proud of “our” kids. In this community we consider those who live here our own. And my children honestly don’t care. They see their gains and are content. They humble me and teach me each year that the goal is growth. Gosh, I’m a blessed lady!

So, while I maybe going prematurely gray and legally insane, we are growing, learning and making gains with each new project and venture.

So if you asked me:

Is it hard? Yes.

Does it make me want to run away and hide? Yes.

Is it worth it? YES

Put your kids in 4H folks! You won’t regret it! (Mostly)

 

Life

Oh, the Irony

I have been spending some time “yardening” as I call it. My garden (vegetable) has yet to become this season and so my efforts have been purely of an aesthetic nature. Weed, fertilize, plant, prune and water. As I putter around and fuss with the sprinkler I can’t help but giggle at myself. I’m basically trying to control nature on my plot of dirt. This sectioned off piece of land that I call my property, which was someone else’s before me, is being sprayed and mulched and molded to my liking. But you know what? Every time I think I have all the weeds eradicated those filthy buggers pop right up again. I can’t help but smile ( a little) at the sheer tenacity and the force of nature. Adam’s curse come to life, right here in my front yard.

I think of creation and how we are formed. We are not the creator, we are the creature. And in our frailty we are still curators and cultivators. If I let my yard go it would run rampant in no time. And so I pluck away at the never ceasing weeds. Here we live and tend to our little things as if we have control. Who am I to tell this plant that it is unwanted? Who am I to force this one to grow? And yet we do just that. Irony at its best.

If you have never grown a garden you really should. It may not be a success but you will learn a lot! One thing I have learned, and there are many more besides, is that you are never in control. Ever. Not even a little bit. Crazy, right? Another crazy thing I’ve learned is that it’s ok and actually preferred to release all pretense of control. The less we hold tightly to in this life the more we are free to live. Forcing a flower to bloom when you want it to isn’t going to happen but with some care and attention that flower will blossom in it’s season and be the gem of the garden.

There is a wonderful message titled “Let it Unfold” that gets me every time I listen to it. Every time one of my roses bloom it is a reminder to keep tending my garden but to remember who really opens the blossoms.

Life

What’s On Your Mind?

Wow! It has been a while since my last post. I have been busy doing stuff and busy doing nothing in the last few weeks. By nothing I mean gardening, napping, reading and generally enjoying my summer break.

There is something that has been weighing on me lately. I’m not sure what others think of me and frankly it’s none of my business but I often wonder what would happen if I actually spoke all the things that come to mind (within reason). So many times there is a flittering spark of a thought that dances through my mind and in a moments hesitation it is gone. I once read that if a thought is not “married” with an action within 30 seconds the thought will not be acted upon at all. Wow, 30 seconds is all it takes to kill an action that just very well may change the course of your life. The impact of that is huge.

I’m by nature a cautious creature. Wary and hesitant. But I also want to live a full life and reach my utmost potential. I want to leave this world happy and secure of my final destination and knowing that somewhere along the way I made a difference in someone else’s life. And so I am at odds with myself most of the time.

In the midst of this I know God is working on me. His voice is ever calling me to be just a bit braver and step one more foot forward. How lovely it is to walk with Him. I cannot be who I am destined to be unless I trust in my maker and His plan.

How small we really are when we think of the vast universe. I recently took a trip and while driving home the rolling hills were criss crossed with roads. The cars motoring along reminded me so much of ants crawling over an ant hill that it made me giggle. Is this how God sees us as He peers down from above?

And yet I know that we are so precious to Him. He loves and cares for us. He watches and guides us. He heals, changes and helps us. I’m ready to see what He has in store next.

Whatever your journey entails I urge you to do the things, live a big life and give it your all❤️ I’ll be over here cheering you on as I endeavor to do the same!

A camellia I picked at my grandparents house shortly after their passing. This flower will always remind me of time spent at their home.
Alterations, DIY, Farm, Home

Personal Evolution

First, I must show you this beautiful painting that I bought at the local thrift store. I really never buy paintings because it seems like you never really know if it’s actual art or possibly just somebody’s Saturday amusement. However, I saw this painting and it just fit. I live on a farm surrounded by mountains and I am in love with the soft colors and the beautiful scenery.

When deciding colors for my kitchen office and living room I was incomplete puzzlement. I simply could not decide and my brain did not see colors.  I had been so good at this before but my frazzled color chooser had a short in it.  Prior to a couple years ago color had been my thing. I love color and the brighter the better.  Case in point, my previous kitchen was egg yolk yellow, my bedroom purple and my living room teal. It. Was. Colorful. But in this painting I learned something of myself. I learned that I had changed. I was now seeking the serenity and the calming effect that simple palettes and soothing colors had on me and my home and my family. In other words, I was growing up and I wanted  more peaceful and calm surroundings. I could tackle whatever things that lay ahead for my day knowing that I would come home and what I would find there would be soothing.

This came somewhat as a shock to me. I thought I knew myself better. But apparently as we age we become new people. It is also been found that the human brain doesn’t fully grow up or make connections that are relevant to good choices until about the age of 30. Let’s just say I am a few years after that but not much. It’s been interesting to me to see how other things have changed in my life.

img_0488
Can you smell me now?

This for example is something new. It is my favorite perfume in all the world. ( Dolce & Gabanna I’m ready for my sponsorship now.)  Never in all my born days would I ever consider buying a luxury item such as a designer perfume. But I have discovered that I like to smell pretty. And in order to smell pretty I do not mind spending a little bit more if I know it is a quality item that I will every day.  And I bought it at Marshals at half price… so, yeah.

Same for the cut flowers I don’t get them very often but every now and then I do like to have a splash of color. That extra bit of nature that brings life into your space. And they’re so pretty. I used to think it was so selfish and frivolous to buy them.  Now I’m ok with it. It’s fine. It makes me happy.

I guess I should’ve known that my likes and tastes had taken a turn when I simply could not throw this rug out. For whatever reason I kept it and I did not even know why.  It was an inexpensive find and was totally replaceable. But I held onto it and as I look around I see that I have used the soft colors again and again throughout my home. I think it’s safe to say the bright and bold colors that I still love so dearly are not going to be finding their way onto my walls anymore. I’ve grown up just a little bit And now I’m seeking calm and comfort and simplicity. And I invited a friend over for dinner so I could borrow her color eyes and now I have a color plan for my downstairs.  *happy sigh*

I cannot wait to finish all of the painting on the lower floor and post pictures of its transformation. You will be sure to find a soothing color scheme throughout my house when I am done. I guess growing up isn’t so bad after all.

Family, Friends, Things I find funny

Personality

I’ve been practicing for the Easter drama most evenings. It’s been fun but also trying. We have seen the best and worst in each other as we log the hours. I’ve made a few observations along the way as well.

One thing I should mention is that our play is put on by church members. As many church bodies are we are a community within a community. A micro culture if you will. We see each other a lot as it is. Three services a week and a private school four days a week keep us in close contact. Many members are related and/or live very near to each other as well. And we live in a small city that has no strangers. Everybody knows everybody here. Add to that four two hour practices a week and I think you can safely say we are ” all up in each other’s business “.

First, I do believe we are blessed with the best. I know it’s corny and canned but I do actually believe it. We have some crazy talented people at our church. We also have a lot of regulars that just kinda want to be done already (me).

To begin with, we have struggled through practices to say the least. Some songs were new and some went unlearned and we just weren’t jiving. But I am pleased to say that through these moments I have a better appreciation for my fellow church members. We have made it to the end. We have stuck it out. We have had disagreements and frustrations and still treated one another civilly. We have joked and laughed and rolled our eyes in unison…. repeatedly. We are a team.

I have discovered a few personalities that stuck out as well-

The everyday Joe: These cast members are logging the hours, trying to not mess up and goofing around behind the curtain on off scenes. I would say about 75% of our cast are Joes.

The hot head: They are belligerent when something isn’t right with their scene and get hot pretty quick. They also like to point out what other people are doing wrong. (they are not directors)

The “Over it” : They are just fed up. They missed their nap. They are hangry and want to go home. Probably about 15% on this one….

The exhausted sideline coach: They are tired of prodding others to participate. They also want to go home but cannot. We need them.

The want-to-be sideline coach: They just showed up. They will jump in and they are there for you. They will change absolutely everything at the last second but they will get you lined out wether you need it or not.

The cautiously optimistic: Those still are hoping for the best and inviting everyone in town hoping the peer pressure will bring out the best in everyone (me).

There is one lurking non member that always seems to crop up as well. The one that waits for disaster to strike. The understudy. The one that just might put exlax in your coffee if it would better their chances.

Well, that about sums up my experience in this years Easter drama. When they said drama, they weren’t kidding! It would really help if someone had specified which side of the curtain the drama would be on though…

To my fellow cast members:

You are awesome! I love you all and if you read this understand the spirit in which it was written and take it with a grain of salt😉

Break a leg!

Being Mama, Family

Dancing In The Kitchen

My girls and I were preparing for the annual dessert auction today. As we moved around the kitchen it was like we were synchronized in some sort of baking routine. It’s funny because yesterday my husband was trying to cook and was so frustrated because there was a chair in his cooking space. He hollered and he yelled. He may have thrown a few things. I pointed out that maybe he was having a bit of an attitude and that most certainly didn’t make matters any better. My son, the mechanic, tends to stay out of the kitchen unless he’s very very determined to make something of his own creation such as his famous (at least in our house) pleasant pheasant dish. Otherwise you can count on him to be about as helpful as a pimple on prom night in the kitchen.

As my two girls and I walked past one another dumping cups of sugar and stirring in handfuls of salt and baking soda it made me think of that saying “kitchens are made for dancing”. Although we weren’t actually dancing it seemed as if we were. I was in complete home maker happiness at that moment. We scooped and stirred and mixed and waltzed around one another reaching here and leaning there and moving aside so the other could get to the cupboard or stove. It was all so timely and without a mishap I thought perhaps maybe I was dreaming a little. Then I realized It was just a bit of déjà vu. This what happens when my mom, my sister and I are in the kitchen together. It’s a perfect seamless dance as we maneuver raw ingredients into a delicious meal. That made me a bit homesick I’m afraid.

Home to me really isn’t a place anymore. It’s more the people that belong to the deepest part of my life. I miss the nearness of my loved ones. I miss seeing their faces on a regular basis. I miss my best friend who no longer lives 15 minutes away. But I have to be thankful for each and every blessing that I do have. And what I have is a beautiful family and a church full of wonderful people that I call friends that I can call on anytime I am in need. Looking forward I also have many wonderful people that I’m sure will become dear friends to me in the future.

I chose to live where I do because that is where God planted me. I have no regrets and I’m in love with what God is doing in my life. But the truth is I hunger sometimes for the nearness of my family. And though they are not far away it is still a sacrifice.

But as always when I face these moments I think about my simple phrase that always carries me through another day and that is “today I choose joy”. I will enjoy this snap shot and treasure it always as a beautiful moment in time. A time when my girls and the girl I was danced together in perfect harmony.

Being Mama, Family, Kids, Life, Love, Marriage

Where Have All The Housewives Gone

We just had our yearly chat with the gal who does our taxes. I have been contemplating working a few hours in the summer. Something very part time. I asked if upping our income a bit was going to help or hurt us in the long run. Funny thing is if I make over $10,000 annual ( which I probably won’t) we up our tax bracket and lose some of the return we are now getting. Essentially, it’s a wash.

My kids are teens now and looking for work of their own. I love this age and yet I yearn to just be out of the house. They don’t need me as much now anyway. I love home but I’m not thrilled with staying there all day, ya get me? And yet, I hear my mother’s voice saying how she wished she had not gone to work when my baby brother entered his teens. He had a very troubled adolescence and she still feels a bit guilty.

And if I’m being honest, there are days when I’m not really up to the task. I’m working on myself this year to improve that. After chronic pain had become intolerable and migraines ate up the hours in my days I stepped back and made few changes in order to better myself physically.

I’m sure this all sounds like I am justifying my choice to remain out of the work place ( at least for now). I guess it is but it’s so much more than that to me. It’s a calling. I’m made to nurture and to love. I don’t understand how being a housewife has gotten such a bad rap. No, we are no longer living in the 1950s but there is truly something satisfying about providing the best for your family.

On any given day I am a driver, a cook, a teacher and tutor, a cleaner (NOT maid), a mentor, a help meet, a friend and lover, an encourager, an organizer, a planner and appointment maker, an economizer and financial assistant, a dreamer and reader, a prayer warrior and a keeper of the home. It’s a big job.

I was purging paper work recently and found stacks of report cards and college applications. Among these were several letters of reference from various mentors and teachers. I read them and was amazed at their kind words. They were chock full of sincere praise and promise. How did I not realize I was a golden girl? I was one of the few that would “amount to something”. I was just now seeing what my teachers must have seen in me then. A bright future. A world changer. Someone destined for more.

Did I squander my life? In the world’s eyes, maybe. But as I sit here writing this my 10 year old is bringing me her school poster to inspect, my 16 year old is explaining his newest dilemma with his vintage motorcycle and I am nagging my 13 year old to feed the goats. I know this may sound like your definition of crazy but this is my little slice of heaven and I wouldn’t trade a second. I’m here for my family and that’s right where I want to be.

I may be in the minority on this one but that’s ok. I’m proud to be a mother and housewife. And, if you ever need a cup of coffee or a hot meal there’s a good chance you will find me in my kitchen and I will gladly bring you in and make you feel right at home.

Family, Health, Life, Love

Passing

My grandparents have been in very poor health this year. There were several times we nearly lost them. This week we got news of grandpas passing. Only two days later grandma passed too. It was expected and it was sad but I think also it was a bit of relief as well. They had suffered much in the last few years. In one week I have lost my only two remaining grandparents.

We often note at a death how great and noble the person was. How they will be dearly missed. How things will be altered without them. This is absolutely true. I loved my grandpa. His silly ways and sharp wit. His ornery streak that he just may have passed on to a few of us. His musical ear and gift of language and love of the old country. I love it and will think of it with wistful admiration and longing.

My grandmother, for all her quirks, taught me to love the green and growing things. She was a master gardener. She was generous with gifts and hospitality. She loved to bake and tried to feed us every time we came over, even in her feeble years.

However, there is another side of death that I’d like to address. I’d like to speak for anyone who may have been hurt at their hands. Those who have endured insults and lies. Those who have been abused. We tend to overlook the bad and really, we should. I know that. But it is still right and good to liberate those that have been bound.

To those I love: you are free now. We can all move on to a more peaceful life together. We have an opportunity to start fresh as a family and love one another more dearly. In our grief may there be blessing. As we mourn May there be hope. In sorrow may love grow. My heart goes out to you all.

Again,I say be free and live well

Your loving daughter, sister, niece, cousin, friend,

Veronica❤️