A Bold, Bright & Happy Summer

by Tess on July 1, 2009

Warning! My blog will challenge you to be more, give more, live fearlessly, take more chances and show up in the world unstoppable, daring and bold.


A couple of weeks ago I went back home for my father’s funeral. It was wonderful to be with our large family: mom, brothers, sisters,  aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, nephews and friends.

All four of my daughters and their families were with us. A rare ocassion considering we live in various places, spread out across the United States.

We also spent time at our cottage in Northern Michigan. That’s my husband, daughter and new grandson (in the stroller). 

We enjoyed perfect summer weather and enjoyed strolling downtown, visiting the local ice cream shop and catching up on our lives. 

Prosperity is often associated with money, yet it comes in many forms. Imagine my surprise when my daughter decided to quit teaching school and become a flight attendant. As parents we were immediate showered with free flights anywhere in the U.S.A., any time. Unexpected abundance! 

 I’m blessed to have a daughter working for South West. I fly often to visit my grandchildren and  cherish the time I spend with them enjoying every second. img_08191

I do believe parenting is the most difficult job one can have. I once saw a poster that had a picture of a baby that read, “becoming pregnant is like grounding yourself for the next 18 years.” Pretty clear, eh?

That was me! I became a mom at 18 and gave birth to all four girls by the age of 22. 
I was not only grounded, I was a little crazy! And here they are years later, being and bringing blessings and prosperity to my husband and I…that just don’t quit! 

My 4 daughters, my grandson,, AJ front and center, and granddaughter Mackenzie 2nd from the left, in the back row. 


I encourage you to create time this summer to spend with your family and/or  friends. Get away from your computer, Twitter and Facebook…make memories that last forever! You’ll be happy you did…life is good! 

 Henri and I wearing our “Life is Good” hats.

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    { 30 comments… read them below or add one }

    Paul Maurice Martin 07.01.09 at 8:37 am

    This is so much like my father’s funeral - where, despite the loss, there was also joy in so many of us coming together. Like yours, my family members on my dad’s side are spread far and wide and are rarely get together.

    Sorry for your loss but happy to hear the spirit you’re bringing to it.

    Caroline 07.01.09 at 9:39 am

    LOL…that quote! I have about 10 more years before my sentence is up…lol. This summer has been abundant with family. My Mom came to visit for a week…now my SIL and her daughter are here through the 4th. Then in August it’s a big reunion up north. All the money in the world can not replace family. This time is so wonderful and precious. Talk about prosperity!

    Caroline’s last blog post..Focusing on self

    Lance 07.01.09 at 10:58 am

    Hi Tess,
    What a great reminder about what truly matters! It’s not about more money, newer cars, faster computers, etc, etc, etc. It’s about people. Friends and family - does it get any better than this? Sure, there are days… Still, having these people in our lives that mean so much to us (whether their family or friends) just makes life so rich. And that’s something a computer and a high speed internet connection can’t give you.

    I’ve got a weekend away coming up, and it will be very nice to just “be” and have fun!

    Continue to enjoy all of your wonderful family, Tess! I can tell how much they all mean to you, and that’s awesome…

    Lance’s last blog post..Set The Rebel Free

    Patricia 07.01.09 at 11:07 am

    Life is good! I have 4 life is good hats that I trade off wearing on my morning walks….lovely pictures! and cute kids…it is nice when the kids can share back with you….my oldest is going on the walking tour of Scotland with me and she is my ever dependable IT geek girl…I could not do this without her.

    Happy Summer enjoy your abundance :) and thank you for sharing

    Patricia’s last blog post..The Magic WANT!

    Tess 07.01.09 at 12:59 pm

    Thanks for stopping by your comments are always appreciated. I signed up for your blog today.

    1o years will fly by. I’m sure you’ve heard it before but it’s true! Thanks for stopping by.

    You always know when to take the time you need and you do it. You’re a great example to all Lance. Enjoy and have a couple smores for me!

    That is so cool going to Scotland with your daughter! Enjoy and let us all know about your fun!

    Mama Zen 07.01.09 at 1:21 pm

    Now that’s an excellent idea!

    Mama Zen’s last blog post..Now, Where Is That Squirrel?

    Liara Covert 07.01.09 at 1:50 pm

    Transitions take many forms. Death is often viewed as one example. Adult family members tend to come together in honour of weddings and funerals, baptisms, family reunions and sometimes retirement parties. All gatherings gain meaning because individuals choose to reconnect. I am currently attending a family reunion in Estonia. This family gathering is in honour of the Laulupidu (Estonian songfest) which happens every 5 years. Up to 40,000 singers and dancers get together for this celebration. It is a pleasure to be here, to feel grounded in myself and to reconnect with loved ones. Every moment is another occasion to savor the time you have been given.

    Liara Covert’s last blog post..What is your legacy?

    jenn 07.01.09 at 2:39 pm

    omg how true is that poster??? Very good advice Tess! I did that for awhile today. I’m off to be away for more and we’re in the midst of planning a trip to Ottawa too :) good times!

    thanks friend :)
    jenn’s last blog post..Happy Canada Day

    Lori Hoeck 07.01.09 at 2:53 pm

    Funerals or weddings –those are the times my family seems to come together. I’m glad we still do and that we can hang out without too much drama!

    Lori Hoeck’s last blog post..How our intuition warns of danger

    Chania Girl 07.01.09 at 2:56 pm

    This was a lovely post, Tess. I’m so glad that even though your reason for all coming together was a mournful one, all of you had the rich abundance of one another. Thank you for reminding us today of what is most important … and for encouraging us to seek it out.

    Chania Girl’s last blog post..Celebrating Your Awe-summm-ness …

    Suzie Cheel 07.01.09 at 5:58 pm

    Thanks for sharing your wonderful family time, very special. Love your unexpected abundance

    Suzie Cheel’s last blog post..What Am I Grateful For Today?

    Vered - MomGrind 07.01.09 at 6:05 pm

    When summer break began, I told my kids I still need to work a few hours each day, but I also promised them we would go out of the house and do something fun together every day. It’s been almost three weeks, and we are having so much fun together. Summer is a great time to step away from the computer.

    Vered - MomGrind’s last blog post..Truth In Advertising

    Megan "JoyGirl!" Bord 07.01.09 at 6:17 pm

    Your family is beautiful and so are you! Wow! And my gosh, I love Southwest Airlines!

    That’s flippin’ fantastic news! (Southwest is often cited as a great example of a strong brand with a loyal following. As a former marketer, I held them in high regard. Their employees seem to have fun working there, as well.)

    Megan “JoyGirl!” Bord’s last blog post..The Many Joys of Earplugs

    Jannie Funster 07.01.09 at 6:28 pm

    Shoot - what am I doing on this computer then? :)

    Yes, I’ll be taking time away from electronics to get crazy on my parents’ farm and at their cottage on the bonny shore of the Bay Of Chaleur.

    Do some bra flinging with my sister. Riverdancing with Cuzzin Tilda. Pig tossing with Brother Joe. Can’t wait!

    Jannie Funster’s last blog post..Like a bord on a wire, 9

    Keith 07.01.09 at 7:02 pm

    Wonderful post Tess,

    I have three daughters and my “grounded” period is about up! Only one daughter under 18! (nearly 17) . It has been an interesting trip I must say, raising three daughters but I wouldn’t trade one second of it for anything!

    Keith’s last blog post..Think Big!

    Kristy 07.01.09 at 8:09 pm

    Mom, thanks for sharing this post. You told me you sent some pics, and ironically, I got these pics in the mail today. It brought back fond memories of those two days: celebrating grandpa’s life, Henri’s new life, and also enjoying some time w/ my sisters, you & dad….a rarity as we get older and continue to be the movers and shakers of the world in our various states. I love you and look forward to more boldness, brightness, and happiness this summer!!!! Rock on, mom!

    Karen Chaffee 07.01.09 at 9:21 pm

    Hi Tess…it is amazing what blessings can be found even in the middle of grief. Your family photos are a delight. I’m glad you spent time together with family. I have a large family, and our times when all are together are rare, perhaps yearly, but always wonderful.

    Good advice you gave, as well.


    Ashok 07.01.09 at 10:17 pm

    You are absolutely right, prosperity is not in terms of money alone! Great set of photos and you have a lovely family there!

    Ashok’s last blog post..Exams, Kabil Sibal and the prejudiced student

    janice 07.02.09 at 4:28 am

    Loved all the photos, but the one of you and your newest grandson best of all! Thank you for sharing these with us and for another joy-filled post! I’m guessing, and I may be wrong, that everyone here positively loves writing and connecting with each other - that’s why we’re not all outside doing other things at the moment we send these comments. For me, reading posts like yours adds to my day. And here’s the cheery irony; the more we do with our families and loved ones and cherish every moment, the more we have to write about! My memory stores them all up, but I’m getting older and my ‘retreaval’ system is suffering with age. My solution? A big handbag. I’m never without a notebook and camera, just in case.

    Thanks, Tess!

    janice’s last blog post..Holidaying at Home

    Mary B Sheffield 07.02.09 at 5:32 am

    Hi Tess,
    What a wonderful family ! Being together w/ the entire family makes memories that last forever. No matter the reason that brings you together !Your family is so good about taking pictures !
    I truely understand about being home at a young age w/ small children !
    I had our 4th child at 24 ! But the light at the end of a long tunnel is getting closer. She turned 16 in May ! :) YEY !!! I have visions of when the children were small and my husband waiting in the car being frustated while I am getting everyone ready and packing diaper bags for every just in case.
    Plus just getting to the car like a pack a mule w/ a whole line of children .
    I am so glad that stage is over ! :)
    The pictures look like Michigan weather was nice to you ! :) It is sooo cold here right now ! But that is Michigan !
    Have a wonderful 4th !
    Mary Beth

    Mary B Sheffield 07.02.09 at 5:43 am

    Tess I have to add nothing like a Pronto Pup In Grand Haven ! :) Where’s my glasses ! I walk the board walk every morning before work !
    Too Funny !
    Mary Beth

    Tess The Bold Life 07.02.09 at 11:11 am

    Mama Zen,
    Yes it is!

    Wow what a festival, 40,000 singers! I hope you enjoy it, every moment you’re given.

    I hope you and your family have a wonderful time making memories.

    Absolutely no drama allowed! We want happy campers having fun together.

    Chiana girl,
    I think the absolute best thing to do on earth is hang out with friends and family in a loving and happy manner.

    Thanks and I love unexpected abundance as well. It seems I get some every day in one way or another.

    What lucky kids to have you as a mom. Someone who goes after her dreams and makes time for her family. You go girl!

    It’s so true Southwest is heads and shoulders above the rest and my daughter absolutely loves working there!

    I think quality is better than quantity anytime and to have both is a miracle.

    Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving a heart warming comment.

    Yes we do love connecting with each other. My retreavel works like yours and I like the idea of a big handbag just like you. And you’re so right our families give us all the material we need and more. Oh and lessons too!

    Mary B,
    What a wonderful place to walk in at least 3seasons. Oh how I can relate to the pack of mules. I remember eating at McDonalds and by the time we were all in a booth with babies in chairs on the table there was no room for the food. Like you glad it’s over. It’s exhausting thinking about it.

    You have me laughing out loud again. Are you sure you were’nt the writer for Beverly Hilbillies in another life time. You’re hilarious.

    We have more in common than I thought. Someday when all those girls have grandbabies you’ll be happier than you ever dreamed possible.

    Tess The Bold Life’s last blog post..A Bold, Bright & Happy Summer

    Sara B. Healy 07.02.09 at 1:34 pm


    I enjoyed hearing about your family…they sound great. I loved all the pictures. My favorite line of this post is:

    “Prosperity is often associated with money, yet it comes in many forms.”

    I think this is something we should all think about and enjoy, like you, the abundance that comes with family:~)

    Sara B. Healy’s last blog post..The Second Chance

    Hilary 07.02.09 at 1:55 pm

    Hi Tess .. thanks for letting us sharing your moments of happiness, your continuance for your Dad - he’d have been proud of you all .. how he kept track - I do not know!

    It just sounds as though you had a happy memorable few days in celebration of your Dad’s life .. I’m pleased for you.

    Enjoy your summer and perhaps you’ll have a little time to reflect on your time with your Dad and all the other things he did with you all - a wonderful world, which will miss him.

    Be peaceful and all the best
    Hilary Melton-Butcher
    Positive Letters

    Hilary’s last blog post..Puffin Money

    Tess The Bold Life 07.03.09 at 7:35 am

    Your compliments and advice warm my heart. Thank you.

    Tess The Bold Life’s last blog post..A Bold, Bright & Happy Summer

    Angie 07.03.09 at 11:14 am

    I agree abundance is everywhere, we just need to choose to recognize it!
    I feel so much closer to my soul when I spend time outdoors- away from the computer and all things technical!
    For me, becoming a mother has inspired me to take an even deeper look at myself. I am the example for my children, and I want them to experience the true authentic me! My children are just babies and they have already taught me more than I can possibly teach them!
    Wonderful post:)

    Angie’s last blog post..0711ddebe7fd2b92.jpg

    Jocelyn of I TAKE OFF THE MASK 07.03.09 at 6:52 pm

    Your are very blessed indeed Tess! And even though the trip was brought about by the passing of a dear family, there was some joy in it too, and many blessings. A simple life with many dear people around us, a sunny weather, what more could we possibly not be thankful for in our prayers? :-)
    Jocelyn of I TAKE OFF THE MASK’s last blog post..7 Secret Keys to Happiness and Success Book FREE!

    Jocelyn of I TAKE OFF THE MASK 07.03.09 at 9:49 pm

    Tess, by the way, I’d like you to know that your blog is one of the blogs that inspire me. You can display the blog award below because you were chose to win the BLOG LUV Award badge :-)

    Jocelyn of I TAKE OFF THE MASK’s last blog post..7 Secret Keys to Happiness and Success Book FREE!

    Jocelyn of I TAKE OFF THE MASK 07.03.09 at 9:50 pm

    Jocelyn of I TAKE OFF THE MASK 07.03.09 at 9:52 pm

    Ooops, sorry the code wasn’t able to display. You can see your award here BLOG LUV Award

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