Saturday, March 21, 2009

Happy First Birthday Gavin












Yesterday my nephew turns one. It’s his first year milestone! I was lucky enough to get to spend some time with him last weekend. From the time Amy got him out of the car on Friday till Sunday when I said goodbye to him he was smiling. He’s such a happy child. Hopefully I will be able to make it home soon. I love time with my family! I think back to a year ago, where I was in my life, and Gavin just starting the journey of his life. I sat and stared at him for hours last year. Filling myself with the wonder of life and thanking God for such a blessing in my brother and Amy’s life, in all of our lives. I’m still very thankful for that blessing. God can use you at any age, I guess. babies sure bring happiness to mine when I see them, especially my niece and nephews. The each have filled my life with joy I can not exactly explain in words although I try many times. Today is also my friend Phyllis’s birthday, she turns 60, just a few years older than Gavin. Something about her eyes have always reminded me of my niece and nephews eyes, they all have the most beautiful blue eyes. My pepa had really blue eyes like this. Phyllis has a beautiful giving spirit, she always has a hug to share, and a kiss as well. She has something bright shining in her soul, just like the light of baby to me. In writing this entry, my mind wanders to the different ages of life. One second I’m thinking of my nephew turning one, then the next I’m thinking of different ages. I even think about Ms. Beaulah and her birthday’s, 90 something birthdays. I think of all those little men and women I see in Taylor Nursing Home that I see, all of them raised their families and retired from their careers. Now they can no longer live on their own, so they are at a nursing home, sort of a last stop before Heaven. I watch in the halls because I have to actually pass at least 4 different hallways before I come to Ms. Beaulah’s, I watch their interactions, some seem to enjoy each other’s company, some seem ill, I remember my friend Wendy trying to open the door for one little lady. We sat and talked to her for a while. I see flirting sometimes between some of the old timers, flirting wasn’t something I thought I would see. Actually they have one hall that has the wall full of pictures of the women there back when they were in their 20’s. I look for Ms. Beaulah on the wall, but can’t even imagine her in her 20’s. I find myself looking at one woman who looks like a movie star back in the early 30’s or something. So many life’s lived. Sometimes Ms. Beaulah is not happy when I visit her, today she was sad. She said something my Mema said to me once, she questioned why God was so slow in taking her to Heaven. Mema was ready to go after Papa passed away. I guess in ways today I find myself deep in thought, I’m young compared to Ms. Beaulah, I’m old compared to Gavin. I have my good days and bad days just like those people in Taylor Nursing Home. Some days even I struggle with feeling of usefulness. I guess today’s lesson for me is we’re never too old. God uses us all no matter what age, if we are willing.
My mind is full today, my heart is with Gavin even if I’m not there in person. Wishing you Gavin a very happy first birthday. I love you very much, my birthday wish for you to continue to bring much happiness to other hearts as you have mine!



video
posted by DEREK @ 12:20 PM | 0 comments

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

New Year











I can't believe it's been so long since I've written in here, seems I just don't make the time for it like I once did. A new year has come and gone. Life is good, staying busy. The kids have gotten big, here's some pictures of them from Christmas. They just keep getting bigger. I bought a new car 2 weeks ago. Nisson Altima. I need to get out there and take some pictures of it. Today although I havn't been feeling well, has been a exciting day watching all the Inauguaral events on television. It was awesome watching and experiencing history today. Change that is a coming. I can't believe how much the kids have grown in such a short time. Well as I said been a bit under the weather but hope to start back blogging more. We'll see!
“Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off and begin again the work of remaking America”
-President Barack Obama, January 20th, 2009
posted by DEREK @ 3:18 PM | 0 comments

Monday, August 25, 2008

Happy Birthday Eli and Ethan







Happy Birthday Eli and Ethan

Six years old, and four years old well – that’s amazing!


Six and four years ago you two happened, and we happened.

Two little golden haired boys
Six and four and such great guys, such great brothers
Full of smiles and laughter
And I have to wonder why
Why are we so blessed?

I love you two so, little Eli and Ethan

You two are so, so cool
And so easy too love – so smart, so into your own world and ready to share it
Maybe I havn't been there enough for that. I sure wish I was

But I was so blessed to spend vacation with you this year,
I wish I had been there for your birthdays.

Wonderful, fantasticAnd Splendid
You two are quite different – and noticeably so
But you guys are brothers and take care of each other I know

Well, now you are six – and four – So on this day I give you this poem

I think your great
You two are tops in my book! So I will not hesitate
You’ve both grown so, Eli you don't sit in my lap like you used too,
but I still see how much you love me.
I want you to know that I love you all of the time.
Years ago you played with your Teddy, now your a big boy, reading and starting first grade.

Ethan, little hoss, you have embarked
On a little adventure
To learn... too grow, can’t believe your in pre-K
Its rainy here today, stormy, and I'm getting sleepy for bed, and I wonder is your mommie getting the two of you all tucked in your beds. Knowing you will wake and be ready for your hot chocolate.

I wonder each year will your mommy and daddy miss this age – each have been special ones
Full of giggles and fun for their son’s.
And as I get prepared for a night of good sleep
And sweet dreams – though it seems
Your so far from me! But always in my dreams you will be

I read, and I tickle, and you’ll talk for awhile
And I understand a bit of what you are thinking
just when you smile
And I think – if I can ever find a prayer to adequately thank God
for you two, I’d better be praying it!

I love you Eli and Ethan– I love to watch you grow
To see you becoming boys – great little guys
swimming in the pool, diving with your diving mask, running to and fro
Laughing loudly, Giving mommy and daddy a hug and a kiss
Or getting rough and rowdy with each other
Playing and singing or playing the drums
and just being the wonderful You’s the two of you that God has made!
I may not see you each day but yes,
I am so proud of you two,
for all of your ways

And my prayer is that through all your fun-filled days
God will keep you both and protect you,
And hold you close to His side
And with His strong hand to be ya’lls Guide
That you will learn to know Him and love HimAnd in Him abide!
Your mommie and daddy,and all of us – are trusting our Lord to show us the way
To be good to our Eli and Ethan day after dayWe love you so much, little guys – you two are the best!You guys in our life we are happy and blessed
Happy birthday, little friend, my nephews
Happy Birthday dear Eli dear Ethan

We sure do love you!
We use the word wonderful
so much, but sometimes,
it does not mean what itshould.
Wonderful Eli,Wonderful Ethan
You light up my life,just being part of it.
You are very Wonderful nephews!

I love you guys
Uncle Derek

posted by DEREK @ 12:20 PM | 0 comments

Friday, April 18, 2008

Wendy




posted by DEREK @ 9:50 AM | 0 comments

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Gavin Ryder
























































It's been quite a while since I posted. I look at my last post wishing my brother Happy Birthday, today I'm happy to say this past week Gavin Ryder was born, he and Amy's first son. Autumn has a little brother now. I can't tell you how happy this makes me. I'm busy packing, I'm moving next week, for right now I'm pooped. I'll write more later. Here's my handsome little nephew.
posted by DEREK @ 6:29 PM | 1 comments

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Happy Birthday Lance
















Well as much as I was hoping I was going to have a new brother or sister born on Halloween, it didn't happen. But I did get my wish on a new brother. When Lance was born, I looked so forward to sharing all of life's little adventures. As I've said in some old entries, I prayed for a little brother from the time I found out my mom was having a baby. He came into this world and was so loved by us all. I think we all loved having his attention. I wanted him by my side, I wanted to show him things. He always had a light in his eyes burning. Always with love. I can't remember anything other than that, it shines naturally in him. Autumn, Eli, and Ethan are the same way. There are many treasured memories I hold dear and so much laughter. Seems the world we live in is so busy. Seems time is just going by quicker and quicker, even though he still seem really young to me. Man twenty eight today. He's the best bro anyone could have.

They say the best comes last, well 12 years after I was born, one of the best additions to our family was born. Finally a brother. Wish I still had all those letters I used to write to God, all the promises, if only I could have a brother. I prayed "Let me have a healthy brother or sister, but please let it be a brother." Well my prayers were answered. I remember Lance was sick with yellow jaundice when he was born. He had to lay under a lamp with little baby sunglasses. it disappeared and he finally got to come home to us. I remember the first time he smiled at me. We all loved him so much. He's always been such a sport and smart as a whip. I only got six years at home with him. I always wished I'd had more. He was a little karate expert, I remember taking him to karate and picking him up so many times. I'd have these little adventures with him and act like we were going to another place while driving home, he'd say Hawaii, then when we're almost home he'd get scared and cry and say he really wanted to go home. He's always been a very loving person, now he's a man, and I still think of him as that baby brother. He's got this wit that everyone loves, and he makes me laugh. He was a great baseball player. Well I've told you about my memories of my brother today, on his birthday. Now we're all grown, have I mentioned I’m going to be an uncle again, next year he and Amy will be having a little boy. This will be the first nephew that has my last name. He’ll be the fourth grandchild, just like ole Lance was the fourth child. I was the fourth grandchild in my dad’s family. I can’t wait to be an uncle again. He’s a great dad, can’t wait to see him with a little boy. I wrote this poem last year on his birthday so thought I’d put it in this entry as well.


Brothers
Lance and Derek, brothers by blood

Thoughts of yesterday continue to flood
Two children fast at play, I grew older and went away
That was the past, and the memories last
Because in our dreams and in life, time goes so fast
Or can time stand still,
where we can look at thoughts of past, present, future at will
Tomorrow will come and we will be still
With unmeasurable amounts of love to be shared
Although we don’t always say it we both know, (that we have no hair)
For now we have our dreams and thoughts, our should and our oughts
Our father and mother, our sisters we love.
I only know of being Uncle, you know Father and Uncle.
But… we are brothers
We are brothers by bloodAnd my love does flood.

Happy Birthday my brother!
posted by DEREK @ 6:54 AM | 2 comments

Monday, September 24, 2007

Happy Birthday Mama


I wanted to go back and look at old entries I wrote on my mom's birthday, she asked me to write about a happy memory of my childhood for her birthday, so I'm practicing on here what I'll write. I write about our heavenly father a bunch on here, today on her birthday I will write about my Mother. She was my connection to life, through her I learned about love, and my heavenly Father, she is the foundation that has steadied me, the comfort I've always carried with me, the warmth I go to again and again. I love her for always wanting what is best for me, and teaching me that life is still beautiful even when it isn't easy. She has been a good example for me all these almost 40 years of my life. She has devoted so much, well all of it to us, her children, mothering us, wisely and unselfishly, and I just want her to know that I love her with all of my heart. As long as I can remember we used these words I love you a lot. They were not words she heard from her mother a lot, but she always knew Nana loved her. But with us it was different, she told us always, every day without fail. So at a young age I started saying I love you. When I was a child, I got to say it more often to her, running out the door, catching the bus.... love you Mama, trudging off to bed, love you Mama. She was the best thing in my little world. She would tuck me into bed at night and say my prayers, and wish me sweet dreams. Those are the happiest moments for me, were those moments of love. I'm a lot older now and not there in Ocilla to say as many "Love yous" as I should, but I'm more aware than ever of her gentle influence over my life. Now I understand the kind of love that waited for us to come in late at night... the kind of devotion that holds a trembling hand and cools a fevered brow. The "love you" I offer today understands the sacrafices she made for us. I didn't always know that, it seems with age, there is always a new appreciation. I apologize for the times I caused her worry or concern. Which were many, and I didn't even give it a second thought. I know that no matter where I am, no matter how grown up I think I am, she'll always be my mama, and I'll always be her child, and every time I think of her, I'm always saying I love you, just like she always said to us and still says to this day. So mama, I'm not sure this is what you expected. I could of told stories of the first time I bought you a present at that little place where I went to Kindergarten, and how happy you made me feel when I gave it too you, your smile always made me the happiest of anything I can remember. So today on your birthday I celebrate you, a woman who I see as independent as Nana was, yet sensitive to the needs of others, who's always been strong of her convictions, and who accepts the things she cannot change, I want to be more like her when it comes to that. She has always done that with wisdom and grace. Today I celebrate my mom who's honest and straightforward who's always willing to listen and never pretends to have all the answers. She's always had a calming influence on me. I have many friends that say their mom's aggravate them. Not my mama, she shares kindness with all who meet her. When comfort is called for that gentle smile comes when it is needed most. She has a new smile, well she has for the last few years because of braces. It's a beautiful smile now, but it's always been beautiful to me. Thank you mama for the gift for caring, thank you for brightening any day by just being you! Happy Birthday from the one you love best. I also wanted to wish a happy birthday to another beautiful lady must be something special about that day that produces special women and that's Tammy over at http://mylifeasawarrior.blogspot.com/
posted by DEREK @ 12:48 PM | 3 comments

Friday, September 21, 2007

Light the Night Walk


I’ve been talking about darkness and light lately, so I thought I’d write today about a cause that is dear to my heart. I’m doing the Light the Night Walk next week, I’ve only raised $100 so far, my goal is only $300. I don’t usually put stuff like this on my blog, but it is a part of me so I’ve decided too, I should have done it sooner, but I thought I’d be able to raise it in time. In darkness I find light once again. We all know someone with cancer, I’m walking this for those I have lost, and for those I have in my life that are fighting it today. My first and only still best friend was in 8th grade, David, I’ve written about him a good bit, we’re still best friends to this day. His girlfriend and later fiancé had leukemia, she fought a strong battle. She went into remission. David and her got engaged. But with a few years it came back, she still fought like a soldier, but the second time Margaret lost the fight. It amazes me that every 5 minutes someone is diagnosed with cancer, and every 10 minutes someone loses the fight. My friend and cowork Cyndi also just went through this fight, a long one, but is in remission now and doing wonderful. She inspired me to do this walk for all. My dad is going through a type of chemo now, and so is my friend Brett. No one that reads this has to give, but your support means a lot to me. You don’t even have to give, but if you’d just put up a link in an entry if you know someone or have lost someone or anything that you could think of to help, or join your local chapter in your city. I plan on taking lots of pictures of the balloons rising. My personal webpage is http://www.active.com/donate/ltnJackso/2220_deveal Thanks for your support in the past, present, and the future.
posted by DEREK @ 6:26 AM | 2 comments

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Ethan's birthday











Yesterday was Ethan's birthday he turned 3, we had a double birthday party for Eli and Ethan while we were in Daytona. Ethan kept telling me, I'm getting big. He's so funny, Sherry asked him who he loved best, Uncle Derek or Aunt Sherry and he'd run over and sit on my lap and say Uncle Derek. You should have seen them with the trick birthday candles, they blew and they blew but they couldn't get them out.
posted by DEREK @ 5:49 AM | 0 comments

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Eli's Fifth Birthday in Daytona Beach
















Yep Spider man turned 5 this week in Daytona, we all had the best time. More later.
posted by DEREK @ 7:09 PM | 1 comments

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Headshots from the weekend










































This weekend, I got to work with a beautiful group of women to do some headshots for them. I really had fun, it was fun working with such different personalities, but all very professional. First time working with NFL cheerleaders. They all were very bright women, and quite beautiful as you can see.
posted by DEREK @ 6:52 AM | 2 comments

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Three growing like Trees







I can't seem to get over how fast they are growing, just like the trees they like climbing.
posted by DEREK @ 10:46 AM | 2 comments

Friday, June 29, 2007

Questions to Mom




It's been a while since I did questions to mom so I thought I would do this again.
1. When you were a girl, what was your favorite music you liked to listen too, did you have any favorite singers? Or someone you just loved to listen too?



I LIKED ELVIS WHEN I WAS A TEENAGER. I DON'T REMEMBER LISTENING TO MUSIC WHEN I WAS A SMALL CHILD. I REMEMBER LISTENING TO THE SQUEAKING DOOR WITH MY GRANDMOTHER WHEN I WAS SMALL ON THE RADIO.
2. What was your first apartment or house like after you got married to daddy?



MY FIRST APARTMENT WAS IN TURKEY. IT WAS PRETTY BIG FOR TWO PEOPLE. IT WAS UPSTAIRS IN A BIG BUILDING. IT HAD TWO BEDROOMS, BIG LIVING ROOM, DINING ROOM COMBINED AND THE KITCHEN.
WHEN IT WAS COLD WEATHER, WE PRETTY MUCH HAD TO STAY IN ONE ROOM SINCE ALL WE HAD TO HEAT IT WITH WAS A LITTLE SPACE HEATER HEATED WITH KEROSENE.

ALL OF OUR FURNITURE WAS BOUGHT SECOND-HAND. THE MILITARY NON COMMISSIONED OFFICERS HAD TO PAY FOR ANY FURNITURE TO BE SHIPPED OVER THERE SO WHEN ANYONE SHIPPED OUT THEY WOULD PURCHASE FURNITURE FROM EACH OTHER.

I DYED SHEETS TO GO OVER THE WINDOW IN THE LIVING ROOM. I THINK THEY WERE YELLOW. WE HAD SMALL SHAGGY RUGS PLACED UNDER THE COFFEE TABLE IN THE LIVING ROOM. IT SEEMS AS IF THE COUCH WAS KIND OF BROWN.

THE CURTAINS IN OUR BEDROOM WERE WHITE PLASTIC AND WE HAD A CHENELLE BEDSPREAD ON THE BED.

IT WASN'T THE NICEST PLACE WE EVER LIVED BUT IT WAS HOME AND WE WERE HAPPY THERE.

OUR APARTMENT HAD A LITTLE BALCONY ON THE OUTSIDE OF IT AND THAT IS WHERE I WOULD USUALLY WAIT FOR YOUR DADDY TO COME HOME FROM WORK IN THE AFTERNOON. THAT WAS WHERE WE STORED THE WOOD TO MAKE A FIRE UNDER THE HOT WATER HEATER TO WARM OUR WATER UP FOR TAKING A BATH.



3. Did you celebrate the 4th of July when you were a little girl, can you remember the first time you saw fireworks?



WE DID CELEBRATE THE 4TH OF JULY WHEN I WAS A SMALL CHILD. SOMETIMES WE WOULD COME TO TOWN WHEN THEY HAD THE FIREWORKS. AT THAT TIME, THERE WAS A SWIMMING POOL LOCATED AT THE PARK. SOMETIMES WE WOULD GO THERE.

SOME OF OUR FRIENDS AND NEIGHBORS WOULD BRING SPARKLERS AND FIRECRACKERS OVER FOR US TO ENJOY. I WAS ALWAYS SCARED OF THEM.




4. Did you ever disobery your mother?



We did not fuss. She was real clear about what she expected out of me when I was a child and I followed her instructions real clearly cause I didn't want to cross her.

About the only time I can remember going behind her back was before I started dating and I double-dated with Betty Sue Smith and her boyfriend on Sunday afternoon. She fixed me up with one of her boyfriend's friends. I think his name was Larry Dismuke. By the time I got home, somehow she already knew so they started letting me date on Sunday afternoon. I was in the 11th grade.




5. If Nana could come back for a day and you could spend one day with her what would you do?




If I could spend one more day with her I would tell her how much I appreciate all she did for me and what she meant to me. I would also ask her a lot of questions about her life. I don't think she would answer though. There was a lot about her she kep silent about.
The photo was done by my blogger buddy Will, he took a picture I had taken of my mom and combined it with one of his creations called Scintillation to make my mom art. He had written me I have a soft spot in my heart for all the for mothers fo this world, and your mother radiates beauty in this photograph. He answered one of my questions “What do you think, what is your focus today, regardless of your feelings? Is it of gratitude?”. I will answer your question: “Yes…I am grateful every day for everything and for every blessing that comes my way, and I become more grateful with each passing day of life”. Two of the songs coming up in about 6 or 7 bowls of Saturday Soup are titled “Be Grateful” and “Gratitude”. More on Will tomorrow, just wanted to give him a big thanks for making my mom art! I always thought she was art anyway.


posted by DEREK @ 4:37 PM | 2 comments