My Flirt, My Heart

 “Once you have had a wonderful dog, a life without one, is a life diminished.”
― Dean Koontz


On Monday, we said goodbye and released you from the pain and suffering that degenerated your strong body in the last six months.

Now that you’re gone, there’s an unbearable emptiness in our home and in our hearts that no other being will be able to fill. You were the most loyal, loving and intuitive companion. I still wonder what we did to deserve your dignity, intelligence and patience.

You were by my side and gave me comfort during some of the most difficult times of my life. You embodied all the wonderful memories of the years when we had a house full of kids, chaos and laughter.

Fifteen years with you just weren’t enough. I will carry you in my heart always, dearest Flirt.

Flirt1 copy

They’re Engaged!

“She makes me happy. When she’s with me, I’m always happy.”
– Carlos Gonzalez, our future son-in-law

ANV Ring

He popped the question in a lighthouse today. Completely surprised her and rocked her world to its core.

On Tuesday, he invited Ramon and me to dinner. Just us – she was teaching at Pope, and was unaware of our plans. After dinner and various nervous glances from both sides of the table, he asked for our blessing to marry Alexis.

We wholeheartedly gave it. We know he’ll make her happy, too.


Another Prayer Answered

“Home is where the heart is.”

My first born has come home, and for that I am grateful. This is my idea of heaven – having all my kids on the East Coast and easily accessible.

However, I don’t minimize that she has made a huge sacrifice by moving home and leaving behind her beloved life in California. She will miss her Beechwood School and her students, her Santa Clara Vanguard Drum & Bugle Corps, and her precious apartment in Sunnyvale.

But most of all, she will miss her dear friends who have been her family, her refuge and her strength for the past six years. And for all they have been and given to her – I will miss them and love them forever, too.

Presenting Mr. and Mrs. Christopher Hofius

So much to remember, so much to be grateful for… yet I am not ready to share my feelings about the magical experience that was our children’s wedding on Saturday, Oct. 8.

I want to keep the memories to myself for now, both in my heart and in mind. Meanwhile, I will provide a sneak peek into the overwhelming beauty of this young couple. Words just wouldn’t do them justice.

It Was Necessary


She deserved it and it was necessary.

My niece has worked so long and hard for the right test score. She’s taken the SATs as often as is allowed and narrowly missed the mark each time. Today, she took her final shot at claiming her scholarship at Florida International University by sitting for the ACT, and she needs to nail the math portion.

She has spent years and hours too numerous to count on the soccer field, often under torrid conditions, sometimes injured and frequently exhausted striving for this scholarship. Her family has made countless sacrifices of time and money. The scholarship she was offered has been the focus of this family for a long time, and all that stands between her and South Florida is the elusive qualifying math score.

We pray that she nailed it this time; I have faith that she has. 

And so, I bought her a cupcake to sweeten the wait – a tiny gesture to a lifetime of commitment. It was definitely necessary.