Happy Birthday, Pap

He would have been 85 today; we would have celebrated; we would have had a cake that said "Happy Birthday Becky and Pap"; we would have blown out our candles together.

I consider myself a positive person - sometimes too positive.  When my Pap died, I understood that he'd suffered on this earth and was in a better place.  I understood he would always be with me and that someday I'd see him again soon.

I pause on the anniversary of his passing every year.  And birthdays are always just a little bittersweet, knowing that he isn't here to share it with me.  Holidays and family gatherings always bring stories of the past.  But I don't dwell, and I often smile, choosing to remember the good rather than focus on what I'm missing.

But this year, this day, is making my heart heavy.  This year, seeing the beautiful cake from The Man say only "Happy Birthday Rebecca" made me just a little bit sad.

Ten years ago, when we celebrated 21 and 75, it never entered my mind for a second that he might not be here for 85.

And today, I am missing him.



I just don't know that I can put it better than I did last year.

But as I sit here waiting for The Man to get home (we're having wings and beer at home tonight), I can't help but document this day.

Sure, it's not our wedding anniversary, but it's the day that 'we' started.

I had no idea that night would be the start of this amazing journey.

I do know, tonight, that I am glad it was.

And as we typically do, I am glad we will take a moment to document that night.

We don't buy gifts.  We don't get dressed up.  We don't eat out at a fancy restaurant.

We are just us.  And we are happy.


Friday Fragments

1.  While the Mountaineer Basketball team didn't make it to the National Championship game, I am still extremely proud to be a Mountaineer.  This team really embraced what they meant to this state and truly were a special group.  And Coach Huggins proved to the world (without trying to prove anything) that he's more than just his past and reputation.  One day I will explain why it took me so long to enjoy Mountaineer Basketball.

2.  Tragedy has once again struck far underground here in West Virginia.  As I write this, there is still a glimmer of hope that 4 men may still be alive.  Despite toxic, flammable methane; fires; combustable coal dust; and a 5 mile distance from the surface there is still hope here.  Hope that by a miracle, there are 4 men waiting in one of the specially designed chambers.  That hope is quickly fading.  Please pray.

3.  The basketball game and mining tragedy have once again shed light on our state.  Some say it seems like we never catch a break and as soon as WV is portrayed in a positive light, we get knocked back down.  But I say, that despite the horrible tragedy, WV has stood tall.  We've shown what it means to be West Virginians.  Across the state porch lights have remained on all night to show support for the men who are still missing.  If you would, please let your porch light burn this weekend.  (For much more eloquent words, read the New York Times Op-Ed Piece, Mourning in the Mountains.)

4.  So, maybe this NFP-thing isn't so bad after all.  (And that's all I have to say about that.)

5.  Since I wrote about my Lenten Plans, I figure I should write about how they turned out.  I did decide to give up sweets, and I must say I did pretty well.  I judge this by the fact that I am still shaking from all of the sugar I've had since Easter Sunday.  And praying a Daily Rosary?  Not so good.  I think it was a bit more than I was ready for and I ended up giving up on it all together.  I think I need to start small.  Do any of you have a suggestion for a good way to start praying the Rosary regularly?  I'm not thinking every day, but I'm not sure how often is good to start with.

6.  Sara and I are up to Week 5, Day 2 (tomorrow) of our Couch to 5k (C25K) program.  I have to say I am very impressed with this program.  Each week is set up with 3 days and it gradually increases your run time.  Each week on day 3 I think, there's no way I can run longer than this, I need to repeat this day again.  Then on day 1 of the next week, I think wow, I can (and did) run longer.  The transition from week 4 to week 5 was the easiest (though not easy) transition yet.  I am proud of myself for sticking with this.  I'm enjoying running and the time with Sara.  The only thing I need to still do is add swimming into my 'off' days to give my joints a chance to recover.

7.  Last, but not least, Spring Football started this week!!!!!!  Our quarterback situation is not clear.  Our offensive line needs to step it up from last year.  Our defense is full of veterans and should be good.  Coach Stewart says a good team has passion and determination, but a great team needs leadership.  I, for one, am hoping that our seniors step up and become leaders.

For more Fragments or Quick Takes, please visit Jen.

Have a great weekend!


For Tonight, 4/5/10

For Today Tonight, April 5, 2010...A glimpse into my day, just an ordinary day.

Outside my window...crickets!  Yes, crickets!  Spring has finally sprung!

I am thinking...that I would like everyone who reads to say a prayer for the victims of and all those affected by the mine explosion in Raleigh County, WV.

I am thankful for...being a West Virginian.

From the kitchen...leftovers.  Buffalo chicken dip, nom nom nom.

I am wearing...pajamas.  (Don't judge, I went for a run and already took my shower.)

I am creating...a very large, time-consuming powerpoint for work.

I am going...nowhere.  Unless of course The Man reads this and suggests we use our Cold Stone gift card.  Now, that, I would get re-dressed for!

I am reading...The Postmistress.  On my blackberry, via the Kobo app.

I am hearing...Crickets!

Around the house...a kitty cat in a box, a puppy on her bed, and The Man doing homework.

One of my favorite things...S.P.R.I.N.G!!!

A few plans for the rest of the week...laundry and exercise.

Here is a picture thought I'm sharing...

No matter what you may want to say about Coach Huggins, he cares about his players.  The photo is from the New York Times College Sports Blog and accompanies a great article.


The Tomb was Empty

John 20:1-9:
On the first day of the week,
Mary of Magdala came to the tomb early in the morning,
while it was still dark,
and saw the stone removed from the tomb.
So she ran and went to Simon Peter
and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and told them,
“They have taken the Lord from the tomb,
and we don’t know where they put him.”
So Peter and the other disciple went out and came to the tomb.
They both ran, but the other disciple ran faster than Peter
and arrived at the tomb first;
he bent down and saw the burial cloths there, but did not go in.
When Simon Peter arrived after him,
he went into the tomb and saw the burial cloths there,
and the cloth that had covered his head,
not with the burial cloths but rolled up in a separate place.
Then the other disciple also went in,
the one who had arrived at the tomb first,
and he saw and believed.
For they did not yet understand the Scripture
that he had to rise from the dead.

Happy Easter!


Do What We Do

The energy in Morgantown is palpable.

Everywhere you go in town you see gold and blue balloons; business signs that say "Final Four"; bakeries full of blue and gold deliciousness; and everyone (even The Man) is wearing their gold and blue.

A men's basketball or football National Championship alludes WVU.

We've been close before (to name a few:  basketball - 1959 Final Four; football - 1989 Fiesta Bowl; 2007 - let's just not talk about it, ok?).

Coach Huggins has told this team that making it to the Final Four is pointless if they don't win it all.  That they have 80 more minutes to be something special.

(Photo taken of the white board in WVU's locker room after defeating Kentucky in the Elite 8 Game)
(Photo borrowed from somewhere.)

Tonight, we play to take one step closer to being special.

We aren't the biggest, strongest, fastest, or most talented team, but...

"We do what we do."  ~Coach Huggins

We even have a t-shirt (the team wore t-shirts that said the same thing to Media Day in Indianapolis):


Let's GOOOOOOO Mountaineers!!!



This video was played at the start of the Send-off Rally for the WVU Basketball Team.

I've talked about it before; the Mountaineers are special in West Virginia.