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This blog is dedicated to my family – you are the source of my pride and strength.

                                I am not much of a gardener, but I am proud to have nurtured the branches and roots of our family tree.     

                                                     I am not much of a navigator, but I am confident that we will always find our way when we follow our hearts.                         

                                                      I am not much of a seamstress, but the fabric that is our family can always be mended and forever will be a strong bonded seam.

                                 I am not much of a musician, but the melodies of your voices and laughter fill me with joy.     

                                                 I am not much of an artist, but the brush strokes, of each of you, color my canvas with beauty.         

                                           I am not much of a negotiator, but my love, for all of you, is unconditional.

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Tribute to my Mom

My novice trek into the world of blogging would not be complete without honoring my Mom, who forged into the cyber-world years ago before it was fashionable and mainstream.  Uncharacteristic of her peers of advanced age, she fearlessly took on the task of setting up her own blogs,”Memories and Moments by Granny Jo” and “Grandma’s Couch,” that had a loyal group of followers.  They enjoyed her recipes and associated stories about family and personal insights. With her physical health failing but her mentality ever stimulated, she was able to CONNECT with others in a virtual way, which gave her great satisfation and pride. Unfortunately, she passed away in 2008 – too soon.  I hope that her essence is floating on the airwaves and she is watching over my efforts.  I hope she is proud that I am continuing her legacy.  I intend to re-post some of her articles from time to time.  It keeps our DOTS CONNECTED…

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I grew up in an era without video games or computers to stifle my imagination. Instead, we were content with a coloring book and crayons (the box of 64, if you were lucky!) or a puzzle book. I was especially intrigued by the dot to dot puzzles and methodically followed the numerical or alphabetical pathway to unveil the “secret” pictures. Even though the picture was fairly obvious before you completed the path, it still was quite satisfying to watch it unfold as you connected the dots. Once the picture was revealed, you could stop awhile to admire your accomplishment and then move on to another challenge. So simple and pure and so fun!
Another game, that was usually reserved for pre-meal restaurant lag-time or waiting room distraction, used only a blank sheet of paper (the back of a placemat worked very well) and a pencil. First, the setup – dots had to be placed in an equidistant grid-like formation on the page (the more the better). Each person would take a turn to draw one line, anywhere on the grid, connecting only two dots. The object of the game was to prevent the other player from completing a full square and for you to complete as many squares as possible, in return. When you found a box with three completed sides, you gleefully completed a square and proudly placed your initial in the middle to “claim” that territory as your own. The person with the most completed squares won the game (and, most importantly, bragging rights). You had to learn to pay attention and to form a strategy to succeed. A life lesson on a placemat!
Now, I am older and still connecting dots of another kind with the same enthusiasm, strategy and sense of accomplishment. These dots are not on a page, but rather, they are the dots of our family tree. This is a more challenging exercise, as the dots are always in motion and sometimes they don’t want to cooperate. But, I keep plugging away at it because I believe that fostering healthy relationships within a family unit is an essential exercise that is often overlooked in our rat-race society. It really is our responsibility to seek out and facilitate connections between us. I prefer to think of it as an advanced version of my beloved dot-to-dot games. Hence the evolution of this new blog: Dot-Two-Dot Family Connections.
As we interact and share experiences (both good and bad) the lines between two individuals will take off in many directions and enrich and strengthen our relationships. This blog will share some of those experiences and, hopefully, inspire others to begin connecting the dots in their own relationships. Let’s reveal the secret pictures that make us special and work together to use the squares we claim to build a stronger family foundation…

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