Today would have been my Mother’s 76th birthday! She has been gone for 2 years and 7 months. We are always keeping count of something, aren’t we?

My Dad threw her a successful surprise 50th birthday party in 1986. Many of our loved ones were in attendance. It was Beeve’s job to keep her occupied and to bring her in the back door. I love the look on his face as he realized that he had done his job well! I love the genuinely surprised look on her face.

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This was our family at that time. A small knot of people who loved each other and did life together.

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My Mother’s mother, my Grandmother Georgia, will be gone for 20 years this Thanksgiving. That does not seem at all possible. I still hear her voice and laughter. Still remember the wisdom that she shared with me, and the truth she spoke into my heart. I still hear the same from her daughter. Sometimes daily.

I was very blessed to have such strong women in my life. Godly women.

I will be fifty next week, the same age as my Mom is here. That does not seem possible either!

She lived another 24 years after this celebration of her life. While I know that there is no promise that I will live another 24 years, there is the possibility that I will live many more.

These things I don’t know, but this is what I do know.

I want to be a helpmate to my husband. For the rest of our lives.

I want to continue to love and guide our children into adulthood.

I want to listen to them and help them to become the people God has chosen for them to be.

I want to be a grandmother who speaks love and truth into little lives.

I want to be a friend worth having.

i want to use my time wisely, to be a productive member of God’s family.

I want to continue to grow and be transformed until it’s time for me to go.

I want to always filter my words through God’s words, not my opinions, or my emotions.

I want to care most about what God thinks, not others.

I want to always point to the One who saved me from my sins.

I want to always live with joy because I know my Redeemer lives.

I want to finish strong.

This is how it often is whenever I think of my Mom. It is not usually just a single thought. It gets all tangled up in the whole circle of life thing. Where I came from, who I am, where I am going. Just pondering.

All that to say that I miss my Mom, and I honor her memory today. Really, every day.



  1. Pam said,

    September 10, 2012 at 7:33 AM

    Kelly, this was a beautiful tribute to your mom and grandma. And those things you want to do – you are already doing them, and quite well! You are a blessing to all of us, and I appreciate you!

  2. September 10, 2012 at 7:42 AM

    I subscribe and read your blog, but today you really touched my heart. Your mother’s beautiful and I am sure she is so very proud of you.

  3. Cindy Stratton said,

    September 10, 2012 at 9:15 AM

    Hard to believe it’s been 2 years already! Sweet lady.

  4. warren said,

    September 10, 2012 at 10:02 AM

    “I want to finish strong” That’s a great goal no matter when your time is up!

  5. September 10, 2012 at 10:27 AM

    I always find your postings relatable to my life in one way or another. Sometimes, they are so relatable they it kind’ve creeps me out. Today, I have realized why we are so relatable. You and I, we are sisters in Christ. We share a bond that nothing can break.

    I too, have many of the same desires that you have. These resolutions are something I am striving for in my life.

    Thank you for your postings. I enjoy reading them on a daily basis.

  6. deb said,

    September 10, 2012 at 12:57 PM

    I wholeheartedly agree with Pam!

  7. caprilis said,

    September 10, 2012 at 1:43 PM

    Yep, I agree with Pam too! You’re the best Schmenk… your MaMa raised you well. Happy Birthday in heaven Ruth… thanks for giving me my BFF!

  8. 3goodkids said,

    September 10, 2012 at 5:22 PM

    The holidays and birthdays are always the hardest. You had a very wonderful mother. She raised you well. I know I still miss my parents every day. What a nice tribute to your mom and grandmother.

  9. honey said,

    September 11, 2012 at 12:12 AM

    very nice kelly. i miss her as well, she had a great laugh and never ever a bad thing to say. i hope when our children get married i will treat their loved ones the way your mom treated me.

  10. September 14, 2012 at 10:29 AM

    We do remember these special days. Happy 50th birthday to you! Funny, I remember my 50th birthday fourteen years ago. Where does the time go?

  11. Vickie Smoker said,

    September 15, 2012 at 9:11 AM

    Kelly, thank you for this great remembrance of your mother and grandmother. I enjoyed seeing the lovely pictures. I’ve just been with our kinfolk in California and I will call to share that visit with you. Cousin Vickie

    Also, happy birthday to you. I know that you and my mother liked to share your special days together.

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