I can’t thank you guys enough for all of the loving comments, DMs and emails we’ve received since my Dad’s sudden passing, almost three weeks ago. Mom, Scotti and I are doing….OK. Just OK. And some days it feels like we’re barely hanging on. But even on those days there are moments of pure, genuine joy which I find both confusing and reassuring in a “this is life” sort of way. I suspect I’ll be stuck here, in this place, at least for a while. I can’t quite move past my mom’s poignant comment, “we would’ve had so much fun growing old together.” And that’s the truth. Dad was fun, and they were the best of friends. My parent’s love story was truly an epic one, a story that was cut far too short. But how lucky they were to have had such a love story at all.
My sister and I have been blown away, since his funeral, by the number of people who approached us to let us know that they were inspired by his funeral to do more. To be more involved, to lift up more people, to make a difference. And that is the most amazing legacy he could ever hope to ask for. So thank you, those that have shared stories and inspiration with us. There’s something so terrible and lonely and overwhelming about grief. Hearing how he is remembered, helps.
If you guys will indulge me for a sec, I wanted to share a little bit of my Dad. My sister’s friend is a teacher at a local high school. Her principal has had some framed words on her desk, talking about school climate, for years. After Dad’s passing, we learned that those words were actually from a speech Dad gave to the teachers and staff some years ago (my Dad was a public school administrator, and known as a damn good one). In this age of so many challenges with public education, I found his words heartening, and thought I’d share:
“What makes a good school has very little to do with how rich or poor the students are, or the type of curriculum that’s taught. It has very little to do with special programs, expansive playing fields, huge endowments, snappy uniforms, celebrity alumni, or whether the school is wired to the Internet.
What makes a good school….is the feeling. A feeling shared by the entire staff that their particular school is special. The feeling that their school really belongs to them….This feeling of ownership, essential to all good schools, can’t be packaged or stripped….it forms itself only when a particular school or community is given the freedom and authority to try what it’s members believe is best for their students.”
We just needed a distraction. Mom and I did an at-home spa night last week, in an attempt to do something “fun.” We half-heartedly sprayed this Juice Beauty exfoliating spray onto our faces, only to be blown away by how many dead skin cells rubbed off. It has the same satisfaction factor as those Biore nose strips, but for your whole face (yet is suuuuper gentle). We’re now both obsessed with the glowy skin it leaves and use it several times per week. (We followed the spray up with this anti-wrinkle replenishing mask – it was perfect for dry winter air.)
Dad may have been right about this one. Dad was Canadian, and always had a penchant for Canadian brands. He may have been right about Lole, maker of some of my very favorite winter coats. They just released an ultra-lightweight packable down jacket….with seriously cool 70’s stripes. Love it.
For your little Olympian. Spyder is having its President’s Day Sale, which means deep discounts on my very favorite ski gear. This is when I stock up for next year cause those kids don’t stop growing.
Admittedly, I am Olympics OBSESSED. Am loving the New Yorker’s article about Mikaela Shiffrin….it illuminates exactly why she’s the best skier in the world. (Hint: girl works HARD.)
I mean….they’re cute, I guess. If you’ve been wondering why the winning athletes have been getting stuffed tigers instead of medals….this explains it.
It’s February, so…. Know what happens every February, like clockwork? People start leaving mean-spirited comments on the blog. Normally when folks tell me that my outfit makes me look “homeless” or that I need to get a “real job” (I work 60 hrs a week at this one, thanks), I just roll my eyes and move on, but this year, for good freaking reason, I’m feeling reallllly low already. So just….ya know…DIAL IT DOWN. Geez. Is it March yet? Feb makes us all a little crazy.
I’d like to be her someday. I love Runner’s World’s profile of this 101-year old runner, who has been training for the 100-yard dash. I always get so inspired by the Olympics, and this woman just felt like a kindred spirit. To me, she represents hope.
ps. I’ve been loving all of the reader inspiration in our #TMEStyleChallenges. So freaking good.
pps. Newsletter picks this week are our favorite family board games. There’s some good (and hysterical) finds. You can subscribe here.