Life

September 11

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Every year on September 11 I react differently. Some years I cry and some years I don’t. Sometimes I watch the documentaries and sometimes I avoid any talk of that terrible day altogether.

This year was a crying year. I don’t mean to be sad anymore, but I still can’t help it after all these years.

To be  honest, I forgot 9/11 was today. I got up at 4:48 a.m. to drag my butt to a spinning class at my gym. It wasn’t until I was driving home a sweaty hot mess that a radio personality mentioned it was September 11, and I just wasn’t prepared. It hit me and it hit me hard. All of the memories came flooding back, and the tears came flooding with them.

I cried on the way home, then proceeded to lay with my dog Remmy and cry some more. He was very comforting, as usual, so I thanked him for being a dog and not capable of terrible things before sending him out to pee.

Like most Americans, I remember exactly where I was that day. I remember being mad that my mom came to school to pick me and my sister up because we were locked in homeroom with our friends — totally oblivious to the terror attacks — having a great day. I remember her telling me that there had been a terrorist attack on our country and that people were crashing planes into buildings. I remember not fully understanding what was going on, but being terrified and sad and confused all at once. I remember watching over and over and over the footage of the planes crashing into the Towers, and then the gruesome footage of the Towers collapsing. I remember hearing about the Pentagon, and then the plane that crashed into the Pennsylvania field. I remember.

I was going to do a post today about our time in Chicago, and I have a fun wedding craft to share with you, too. But it seemed wrong to share these things today. Today we remember. We remember those we lost and we cling to the terrible memories of that day in hopes they inspire us to be better people in the future.

Proud to be an American today and every day.

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Our hearts go out to Boston

In light of yesterday’s tragedy at the Boston Marathon, I’m forgoing a craft post. Instead, I wanted to share a link to a friend of a friend’s blog: http://carriejones.livejournal.com/304150.html.

She was at the marathon yesterday and wrote a very compelling account of what it was like to be a bystander amidst the chaos. She wrote about the terror of the day, but she also  about people coming together to help one another in a desperate time of need. 

Let’s face it. People really suck. Big time. But not all people are bad — in fact, a lot of people are good. Maybe even most people. That’s what we should take away from the tragedy in Boston and from her blog. When we needed each other most, we had people to lean on, people to depend on. There were more good people in Boston yesterday than there were bad, and they exemplified what it means to be caring and loving human being.

Here’s to never giving up hope that good will conquer evil, and here’s to hoping we can still manage to see the good in people even when tragedy strikes. Here’s to Boston.

My thoughts are with you all.

Christmas, Craft Projects, Holiday, Life

Hope Ornament: #BloggersforSandyHook

A week ago today, 26 lives were cut short by a senseless act of violence at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Today we blog for Sandy Hook.

As part of the #BloggersforSandyHook tribute I wanted to share an ornament I made for our tree this week.

In honor of the grieving community and the 26 people who died at Sandy Hook Elementary School last Friday in Newtown, CT., I made a “hope”ornament for our tree.

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I really like the idea of having this on my tree each year to remind me to hug my loved ones extra tight, especially at Christmas.

If you want to make one too, here is what you’ll need:

  • Gold paint
  • Thin paint brush
  • Crystal beads or gems (26)
  • White ribbon
  • Christmas ball ornament (it can be any color)

Using Martha Stewart gold metallic paint and a thin paint brush, I painted the word “Hope” onto an ordinary glass Christmas ball. I chose to write the word in basic handwriting versus anything fancier — I like that it looks like something a kid could have written, plus I don’t trust my ability to paint in cursive. I then added 26 small dots all around the word “hope” to symbolize those who passed away at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Lastly, I painted one gold star as a tribute the bravery exhibited that day.

After the paint was dry, I carefully went over it all a second time so it really popped on the ornament and on our tree.

Next, I removed the silver top of the ornament and placed 26 crystal beads inside, again, one for each life lost. They are super sparkly and look really pretty inside the ornament. The beads I picked are plastic and sort of chunky, and I’d imagine that little girls would have loved to make necklaces out of them.

As a last step, I put the silver cap back on and tied a white ribbon to the top of the ornament. I added a bow where the ribbon meets the ornament as the final touch.

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I was having a heck of a time taking a decent picture of the ornament and didn’t do the best job. It is beautiful and because of all of the gold paint, crystals and white ribbon it looks rather ethereal — which seems very fitting.

 

To all those grieving in Connecticut: May your lives be filled with hope for a better future and your hearts be filled with the happiest of memories of the loved ones lost. You are in our thoughts this holiday season and inspire us each day to hug our loved ones a little bit tighter. 

I am truly sorry for your loss.

Jess