Extending Our Happily Ever After

"We do! Now let's live healthy and fit!"

This year and where we are headed…

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This is the big year for us.  The year we head west.  So much has happened for us in the past six months…

Ivan is now training for his CDL License and the training should finish in about 7 weeks and then he should be looking to be hired with a trucking company.  We are hoping for a “on the road” company so that he can get paid pretty well.  We will see.  It will be quite an adjustment for us, as we are sort of glued at the hip.  We are always together.  However, we met online and we are both great with technology and this might be a revisit to our past where we are communicating through technology again.  It will be interesting.  We will see how it goes.  A means to an end, though… he and I are real good about things like that.

Christopher is doing amazingly well in his Senior Year.  He has put applications in at 9 different colleges/Universities for next fall and already is four for four for acceptances.  He’s had acceptances from Pitt, LeMoyne (with scholarship), Lycoming (with scholarship) and University of Sciences (with scholarship).  We are waiting to hear from USC, Carnegie Mellon, Berkeley, University of Washington and UC San Diego.  We probably won’t hear anything til the spring now.  Pitt is leading the pack.  He fell in love with Pittsburgh when he attended Carnegie Mellon for the PGSS (Pennsylvania Governor’s School of Sciences) last summer.

Chris was also placed third chair (for Baritone Horn) for the PMEA District 9 Band Concert, which will take place next week.  We are quite proud of him.  He’s been keeping quite busy with the Crystal Band, which has just wrapped up their Christmas Season of concerts. There will be many senior activities coming up for us to attend before his graduation in June.

His senior portrait that we picked for the yearbook is this… which I took myself.  I opted to take the portraits myself to save some money for us.


We are going to start the downsizing next week pretty aggressively.  We must.  We’ll be looking at purchasing our RV around graduation time and there won’t be much room for anything, so operation DOWNSIZE is upon us.  Such a huge task and not one I’m looking forward to.  But, it must be done and I am looking forward to being DONE with it.

As for my parents (the reason for all of this)… Around Thanksgiving, my mother did not sound well.  I had made two phone calls where she just was NOT connecting with me over the phone.  She wasn’t able to get her words out, which has never happened before and it was very upsetting to me.  The first phone call, I was somehow able to offer her words and she was like “Yes” so I am still connected to her, but to hear her not be able to express what she wanted to say really was quite unsettling.  Our second phone call, that was actually ON Thanksgiving and we just weren’t connecting at all.  She was talking over me and so we weren’t sure if she just wasn’t waiting to hear me or couldn’t hear me, or what it was, but again, no real connection was made.  Since then, though, our phone calls have been better.  She has been talking to me as usual… knows our names, talks as she always has… these are never huge, thought filled conversations, they haven’t been… just basic things, like the weather and how are you, stuff like that.  The need I feel to get out there, though, is stronger than ever.  It’s a huge weight.

I’m starting to get rid of some of my anxiety over many things this year… things are starting to lift.  You’d think the closer I got, the worse I’d feel… but at the beginning of Christopher’s senior year, it was horrible.  Christopher was feeling it, I was feeling it.  I was crying almost daily.  I think that his acceptance (the first one) was a huge weight off his shoulders and when he felt better, then I started to feel better.  Leaving my son is no little thing.  It’s been weighing on my mind for years now… and yet, I knew it was coming.  I felt in my heart that he was an East Coast kid and that I was always going to go back to my parents to care for them.  I was taking this all too literally… I left my parents 18 yrs ago when I got pregnant to raise my son nearer his father and now I’m leaving my son to care for my parents.  When I need to just let go of the guilt.  That is hard!  You’ve NO IDEA!  My son is going to college.  I’ll always be there for him.  He is ready now to make his mark in this world.  He’s already achieved so much and I’m so very proud of him.  I know he’ll be fine and he do great, no matter where he goes.  I want to be there for my parents, I miss them so much.  I don’t feel obligated, I feel privileged! I am who I am in this world because of them.

Anyway, that is my update on this New Year’s day.

Author: PennSmiths

We are Marie, 49, and Ivan,58. We used to live on the East Coast and are now living in Southern California. Marie grew up in Southern California and Ivan was born and raised in Kent, England. We met while playing a word game online and Ivan hopped over the pond to marry me. He says that he would have moved to the moon if that was where I resided! We plan on traveling out our days together when we retire... in an RV, but that won't be happening for a while. I have an amazing son, Christopher and he makes me so proud! Our site is www.extendingourhappilyeverafter.com

One thought on “This year and where we are headed…

  1. So sorry to hear about your mother’s memory. I am sure your parents are thrilled you be moving closer soon:) Sounds like plans are moving forward.

    Leaving the children was the hardest for me. I knew we loved the west and they, as is my mother, are on the east coast but in three different places. But all has worked out. When we do travel back to visit, I find that each child is so involved in their own life, that we don’t see them much when we are right there. So this helps with leaving. Once your son gets adjusted to college life, he will come home where ever home may be at the time. Thanks goodness planes go everywhere.

    Packing up and downsizing will be great exercise…up, down, up, down!! You go girl!!

    Good luck to Ivan and his last few weeks of school.

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