Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Frankie and Annette

Daughter2 is on spring break this week.
She is in an undisclosed Florida city with 10 of her closest friends.

Relax....I know the city, I'm just not sharing it here.
In fact, I have the street address complete with house number because I'm a nagging mom like that.
Did I log on to google earth to check it out?

Hubs and I agree that spring breaks back in the 'olden days' were a far cry from the spring breaks of today.
For starters, we didn't know anyone who took a cruise.
College kids couldn't afford that when we were in college.
Can they afford it now?
Mine can't and I'm not quite to the point where I'll pay for a cruise.
If I'm paying for a cruise I'm going to be on it.
And heaven help the families who find themselves on a cruise with 100+ college students.

Also, we didn't take a trip with our friends every single year.
Some years we just went home and hung out with the folks.
I went to uni a fair distance from my family and I enjoyed trips home.
Mom cooked my favorite foods and took me shopping...I slept in my own bed and saw friends and didn't feel cheated in any way by not having a trip to the beach every Spring.

My senior year in college I spent Spring Break in Ft. Lauderdale with four of my best friends.
We shared one small and tacky, but delightfully inexpensive hotel room and since it came furnished with just two double beds we took turns sleeping on the floor every night.
You had to step over that lucky person to get to the bathroom.

No renting gorgeous beachfront homes with jacuzzis and private pools and room to sleep 15 when I was a college student.
My dad would have looked at me like I had two heads had I even suggested such a thing.

Hubs was my boy friend back then and he had also gone to Florida with friends, however they were in Daytona Beach some four hours away.
I was always a responsible girl, a rule follower, and not a wild child.
But 20-somethings are 20-something and I was 20-something so one day I borrowed my friends brand spankin' new RX7 and drove to Daytona to see him.

By myself.

No cell phone.


No phone call to the parents letting them know what I was up to.


My friend didn't think twice about loaning me the new car her dad had purchased for fact, she suggested it.

And now, you are in for a real treat.
Because I am about to post a picture from that long ago day and unlike a lot of 'old' pictures around here I know precisely where this one rests....
in my husbands wallet.

Sometimes my hubs will meet a person who doesn't know me and when they inquire about his wife he likes to show them 'my picture'.
Then, when I eventually do meet these people who only know me from the photo, they scratch their heads and think that I cannot possibly be the 'wife' in the wallet.

If you meet my hubs someday he will very likely show it to you.
My hubs loves this picture.
When I was writing this post I had the photo ready to upload onto my blog and he came in the room, saw it, and got a huge grin on his face.
Honestly, when he looks at me, I do believe this is the girl he sees.

Back in 2005 we were in a little village in Italy purchasing a lovely table.
We had been happily chatting with the shopkkeeper when it came time to pay.
As hubs opened his wallet the shopkeeper caught a glimpse of my photo circa 1982.
He pulled hubs aside and in his oh so charming Italian accented English, with a worried tone in his voice, asked, 'What is this? You have zee beautiful wife....why you need zee girlfriend too?"
"This is your girlfriend in the picture, no?"

Well, if you want to get all technical,'s his 'girlfriend'.
His girlfriend from 25 years ago.
The girl she was when she was just a girl.
Before she was a wife.
Before she married him and bore his children and shlepped from state to state and across the ocean with him.

I'm here to tell you that kind of stuff ages you ya know.
And also that Italian men call all women beautiful.

A reel has been playing over and over in my head this week every time I think of my daughter...

Is she being sensible?
Is she wearing sun screen and her hat?
She's so fair, I hope she's wearing her hat.
Is she eating right?
Has she spent all her money?
Has she spent all my money?
Is she re-charging her batteries for the second half of the school term?

As I run thru this laundry list of thoughts it helps if I try to remember my 20 year old self.
The carefree girl with the tanned legs and hair flying in the wind.
The girl making plans, dreaming dreams, and feeling excited for all that lay ahead.
The girl who was ready to take on the world.

The girl still lingering in the gap between adolescent and adult.

I hope my daughter is wearing sunscreen.
I hope she's eating and resting and re-charging.
I hope she's being sensible.

And I hope especially that she is tucking these friends inside her heart...
that she takes a picture in her head of these years where her hair flies in the wind and she too lingers in that most magical gap.


  1. I think you should rename your blog. I think you should call it "Tissues Required".

  2. This is a great story. It brought back some of my own 20 something memories of summer's past, hair flying in the wind, and friends of long ago. Have a great day. Blessings, SusanD

  3. Oh my, that brought tears to my eyes ... it was just so moving. Blessings to you, dear one!

  4. What a beautiful post today. My husband has a picture of me too but I'm like 5 years old, on a horse, crying so it's more funny than sweet! Your daughter is fine, you trained her well.

  5. Can I copy this and change the names? LOL. A friend of mine asked me yesterday about my 20 yr old baby girl and I was saying almost this exact same thing.

    I am now going to go find a pic for the hubster to carry in his wallet in case he meets an italian who wants to see a pic of his hot wifey. ;)

  6. Great post today. Your daughter probably is being very sensible because you raised her and she knows right from wrong. If she does make a mistake, it will be something like not wearing sunscreen that will be trivial in the scheme of things. You were a hottie! Glad Hubs still carries that picture in his wallet. You're right, he probably does still see you that way!

  7. What a great post, Joyce! My husband carried my senior photo with him for years and years--the one with flowing long, straight hair, and a thin body! I think he may still carry it :)

    I enjoyed hearing your memories today, and of course hearing your parental concerns as well :) I think we had more fun in our youth than people do now!!!

  8. Great post (as always) and love the picture! I do want to know what the shopkeeper said when your husband told him that it was indeed his beautiful wife.

  9. i {heart} this post. and yes, beautiful picture, indeed. i see so much of your girls in you. ;)

  10. I think they're happy memories, and I love that your husband carries that picture around in his wallet still! With my son getting married this summer, I find myself often thinking back to myself at that age and reminding myself of what I was like. I've also found myself admonishing him once or twice to "learn from our mistakes". : ) But I wonder if he will.

  11. This is so sweet. I think my Hubs has a "photo" of me in his head too of days gone by. {sigh}

    One Spring Break we spent the week in Cabo as a family and right then and there I told my kiddies (high school age then) don't even think about asking to go there with friends in college. Uh, yeah. Not a good scene.

    Anyway, we've always spent/traveled together for spring break up until this year when different schedules are preventing it. Sad.

    I hope mine recharge also...while they're looking for gainful employment for the summer, that is. :)

  12. *sniff-sniff* I got all the way to the part where you showed the picture and said you think he still sees you that way before I started blubbering all over...*sniff* I'm with Rebekah..."Tissues Required" should at least be disclaimers on posts like these! LOL!

  13. This may well be my favorite post of yours! What a gorgeous picture. No wonder he keeps it with him. I've no doubt this is what he sees when he looks at you--even in the morning with bed head, even when you're sick, always. I have a picture I took of my husband on our honeymoon. Cutoffs and no shirt, about 100 lbs lighter. But that's who I see when I look at him. I call it looking with the eyes of love. Congrats to you and your sweetheart. May you have many years to look at each other.

  14. So sweet!! Since I'm about Daughter1's age, it's sweet to hear those thoughts from our moms :) Daughters 1 & 2 are lucky to have such a sweet momma!

  15. I agree with Spring breaks today the only spring break I did was drive to California and stay in a dumpy hotel. I love the picture your hubs carries I can't believe you did that! I love the Italian shop keeper to funny! I love being in Italy and everyone calling me Bella!

  16. Somehow I feel like my kids are younger than I was at their ages. It's not true but it makes it hard to let go.

    That picture is great BTW. I can see why he cherishes it.

  17. What an awesome story! I loved it and I think your hubs rocks for that story. Thank you so much for sharing that today.

  18. my girl was at the beach last weekend for mardigras and i believe i asked myself every one of your questions...
    praying our kids are happy, sensible and remember whose they are and where they're from ... they'll look back and smile, too ;)

  19. I LOVE it that your husband keeps that picture in his wallet. Mine has one like that too, and people do scratch their heads!

  20. I love this - brought back memories of my last Spring Break trip... I was 20, on the verge of getting engaged, and my three best girlfriends and I went to Palm Springs, California and stayed in a cheap hotel... no alcohol, no drugs, no danger, just freedom, tanning, friendship! I, too, have a wonderful picture from that weekend and, awful 80s styles aside, I love the shear happiness on our faces! Tucked dear in my heart, for sure.

    And, I need to go to Italy. Today. :-)

  21. LOVE that!
    I love that they might still see us that way too. Because lately? I'm just feeling like the old grey mare ain't what she used to be!

    Hope Daughter 2 has a fine time.

  22. This post was the best one I've read in a LONG time! My hubby keeps a picture of me in his wallet from our wedding day over 16 years ago, and also uses it to show off to those who ask to see his wife. I think it's so sweet. Your story really touched my heart today. I hope that your daughter has a wonderful, safe, spring break! Have a great weekend Joyce!

  23. OH, what a great walk down memory lane, evoked a lot of memories for me too. This was a fun read! Hoping daughter makes a lot of great memories and make it safely home. Thanks for a great read and happy weekend!

  24. Love the picture of you. I am sure she is being a good girl like your were.

  25. Just sent my 20 year old baby off to Florida with 4 of his friends. Prayers go with them. Feeling a little better that they will meet up with his friends' parents there. Thanks for the spring break post. What a great picture!

  26. MS is headed to the beach tomorrow (Saturday) with some of his friends. Time to worry!

  27. So many things to discuss--
    I, too, cannot believe what spring break has evolved into these days. And it even starts now in high school!
    I have 4 words for that: Over My Dead Body

    You always manage to remind me that the job of being a parent is never over. And that it might even get harder-- right now I'm busy keeping constant watch over them, but at least I have control.
    Scary is when you let them fly on their own.

    I'm sure she'll return to school relaxed, tanned, and ready to get back to work.

  28. What a wonderful photo, and such an enjoyable post to read. I agree that the young ones today seem to start where we left off.... but your beautiful daughter will be having a great time and will be sensible.

  29. My hubby carries a picture of me circa 1983. One I had taken for the college year book. Probably the only copy that exists of it. He's carried it for 28 years. Wow. Is that loving the wife of your youth? Cool. Aren't we lucky??