Not far from my house is a national coffee chain place.  I have never been there, don’t plan to go there, no longer even drink coffee.  For a few weeks this summer they had the parking lot all torn up, now it seems as though the construction is done.  Except, they left this.

  It made me laugh.  So I took a picture of it.

   It has been my birthday for a couple of hours now.  In a few more hours I will go to bed, and when I get up….. I have hardly anything planned.  Well, I may shower.  And then on Sunday the in-town kids, Daniel, and I are going to the state fair.  I won’t be posting and I won’t be drawing any cards.  I will be checking in every once in a while to respond should any lovely JulieLanders feel the urge to comment.  See you on MoonDay.

For those of you who don’t know, my sister was born on my 3rd birthday.  On September 17, 2007 she went Home.  For our last birthday together I gave her my hair (the braid was over three and half feet long) and she gave me the day back.  It sometimes feels like I am a twin-less twin.  I am getting over my anger, and my hair is growing back (we left it about an inch long all over my head).  She now has her own day, which was what she really always wanted.

45 thoughts on “Taking a Break.

    1. The story of my birthday is so much a part of who I am that I need to tell it every year.
      Thanks for the blessing Sarah, hope you are well too.

    1. Thanks Lora, when you share your day with someone for so long it becomes a part of you.
      We did some wandering and some food gathering, and now it’s time for laundry. Except for one car issue (not mine though) it’s going along great.
      Big time fair food tomorrow for sure.

  1. I’ve sent you personal thoughts via email. But in honor of your take the day off, I pulled a card from *my* deck…just for you.

    (ugh…and since I’m still new here and cannot figure out immediately how to post the picture of the card here, I’ll post it on my blog. But it’s still in your honor)


    1. Will be getting to e-mails in the next day or two, and heading straight off to see your card draw. Thank you so much!

    1. First of all, welcome! And you did not fail, it was a TweetFlaw, and we blame Mercury around here for all difficulties (at least for another week or so).
      Thank you for the kind wishes.

  2. Happy Birthday. Good girl for not going to Starbucks, even for tea. Thank you for sharing about your sister, that was beautifully written. Have fun with your family at the fair. Kettle corn always tastes better out of the kettle.

    1. Thanks Kristin, quite relaxing day.
      I am fairly militant about my boycotts and a huge believer in buying local. The left-over outdoor toilet just cracked me up.
      When we do this fair adventure we take along plastic bags and containers, the better to over-order fair food and carry it around with us all day.

    1. Beautifully put Karen, thanks. She has really been in my thoughts a ton lately, and I am very happy to be letting a lot of that anger go.

  3. I haven’t been over here in a while, but apparently I just happened to show up on your birthday, so happy birthday! It’s Logan’s birthday on the 12th, so you have a fellow Virgo in him.

    Also, I was giving Ryan (Moore) a ride home the other night (he helped me move) and I drove by your house on my way back to Amazon and I have to say, your new front deck looks fab!

    1. Your timing is exquisite! Glad you wandered over.
      I keep forgetting that Logan’s day is so close to Elliott’s and Nikki’s. Your mother’s day is the same as my father’s! We couldn’t be more connected if we inter-married.
      I will pass along the compliment to Dan about the deck.

  4. Happy Birthday, my favorite Oregon Sis-in-Law. I hope you have a fabulous day today and at the Fair with the Son and Empress. Thank you for the beautiful story about Gay’s gracious gift to you. Hugs always.

    1. Ah! You just saved me a stamp. I got the lovely card you sent in the mail today. Thank you so much for physical, as well as virtual, greetings.
      I miss my sister, but I also know that I have two “bonus” sisters in you and Mick, along with Teresa. I feel quite lucky.
      We’ll take pictures tomorrow, I’m sure some will show up here, in addition to a few FaceBook pages.

  5. That’s a very powerful and touching story. There has been a lot of death around my birthday, so I always associated my birthday with loss and grief.

    Then came along Mr. Wahoo, and he introduced me to The Birthday Week. It was a week that celebrated me. He taught me that my birthday was about life and joy. It was a day that made him happy because I had been born. I had never thought of my birthday that way before.

    Happy Birthday, Julie! I’m so happy that you were born. 🙂 You are a gift. 🙂 Hope you get a chance to celebrate you.

    Much Love!

    1. Oh Cat that was so sweet, thank you. My mom has two brothers, when one passed away on his number three daughter’s birthday she took it as a special gift from him. I know how much better it is for the person leaving, than those of us they leave behind, but sometimes “knowing” this doesn’t really help.
      We do the “week of me” too, but mostly it’s because we just like to drag things out and aren’t very good at accuracy. This year I’m celebrating for two seperate weekends, so I’m happy with that.

  6. Happy Birthday! Thank you for sharing your heart with us—blessings to you and your sis, dear Jules…

    Birthday wishes to you from Canada,


    1. Love from Calagary? Yipee for me! Thank you tons.
      (Wanna know another reason why you and I do so well together? My sister’s full name is Gay Lynn.)

  7. Happy Birthday, Julie. I know it is a bittersweet/sorrowful time as well; I was thinking about Gay (and Hanna) just recently. I hope you guys have a blast at the state fair and that JD gets his fill of llamas.

    1. Thanks Al- yeah, mixed bag for me, September always has been though.
      Tomorrow should be quite a day! Not just the llama/alpaca aspect but he is inviting a “friend” to join us….. I am so curious!
      Miss Gay-Gay seems to be making the rounds again. She does this. Busy-butt girl, even from Over There!
      Hanny is planning on being in town a whole day before we head up the coast, can’t wait to see her. And her little dog too.

  8. Oh, Julie. Your post made me cry.

    The story about your sister and the braid is so heartbreaking and wonderful at the same time. One day, when you are ready, I hope you write about it. These are the stories we are all meant to share.

    Have a blessed birthday. Enjoy every moment.

    1. I have started to write it several times, can’t quite get through it yet. I make mention, briefly, just so everyone is on the same page, but yeah…. Maybe soon. I had so much anger orginally, that seems to be fading now, which is very good.
      I’ve joked that the first book I write will just be my own life/family story: life, death, cancer, witchcraft, ghosts, romance, wild friendships, family drama, immigrants, revolutions, whore houses, opium dens, mixed marriages, Hawaii to Ireland, Mexico to New York, you get the picture.

  9. Happy Birthday for the second time from me, Julie! (I’m saying one for you and your beloved Gay Lynn today). And yes, I would buy your book, too!

    Have a GREAT TIME at the fair, my friend!


  10. Happy Birthday, Julie! Looks like I’m a day late, but since you’re celebrating for 2 weekends I guess I’m still in the window. Hope you’re having a great time at the fair!

    And I’m sorry to hear about your loss. I’m glad you can still feel connected to your sister in this special way.

  11. Needed a separate post … I am really, really sorry about your loss. It sounds incredibly painful. I hope with all my heart that you can ‘find’ her in something special today and every day. And for what it’s worth I really do believe that one day you will be reunited. That she’s not gone, just unattainable for now.


    1. Thank you much. It was a pretty orderly day, so I did well. But festive too. We don’t really schedule it too tightly, we’ve learned over the years, we do have a little route we make though.
      Yes, she is never very far away really. When she was first gone I awoke one night to her holding my hand, as she had done during those nights of hospice care. It was really nice. She pops in and does it every once in awhile still.

  12. Another Happy Belated Birthday Wish from across the seas.
    Thank you for sharing your story with us.
    Hope you have/had a lovely break with your family

    1. Thanks, not really belated since I plan on celebrating for one more weekend. The break has been quite lovely. But I’ll be back early tomorrow to continue with our card altar. (I have found myself it.)

  13. Happy Birthday Week (that means I’m not belated)!

    My little bro’s bday is in a few days. He died a few days before my 22nd bday. Those days are always bittersweet. I feel for your loss, and your anger.

    Be well.

    1. Thanks Skye, glad to see you here. I read the post you did about your brother. It’s a time to acknowledge all the feelings we have around these things, all are valid.
      We’ll be in Newport Sat/Sun, might bump in to you!

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