It’s been a while. I’d rather not give any excuses as to where I’ve been, but I’ll just say this….BUSY. I’ve been extremely busy. Ridiculously busy. And I wouldn’t have it any other way. My apologies for abandoning this blog for a year and then months at a time. I’m trying to get better about it.
So…where to start with this story….It’s probably going to sound like a rant or a ramble and won’t make much sense to the outsiders of my life, but here we go. Bare with me.
A few months ago, my husband and I got into a discussion about the previous owners of our current house, mainly because 3 of our neighbors are all moving away for different situations. The person who lived across the street from us was the brother-in-law of the woman who lived in our house. He has since moved and the house has been sold and is occupied now. Before he left we met with him and we thanked each other for being neighbors and looking out for each other. He seemed genuinely upset that his time in Sweet Valley was coming to a close, but he’s moving closer to his son and he was happy about that. I can empathize as I’ve been through 4 major moves in my life, although only locally. Anyway, there’s the back story.
R. had brought up in passing that the daughter of the people who lived in our house had died in a horrible crash on 29. I know that sounds morbid, but it actually was a discussion about why or why not I should spend money to get snow tires. A few days later, he sent me a link to the news story about the girl, here it is (Courtesy TL Archives). I get terrified driving in the snow and the ice, not only am I a girl driver (insert women driving jokes here), but people around here are nuts. They are either riding your tail or speeding or driving too slow during the conditions. I don’t think anyone can be an expert on winter driving, but there are some things you can do to keep yourself safer, however that’s another blog post for another time. Also: I’m from the Poconos. I’ve seen my Mother drive after blizzards, ice storms and light snow. It’s terrifying regardless of what you drive, who you drive with, or what kind of gear your vehicle has (unless you have a tank). Winter is a necessary evil around here, I just want to be as safe and smart about it as I can. If that makes me a basket case, so be it, I guess.
What’s interesting about Christy (the girl in the news story) is that we almost have parallel lives. We live in the same house. We have the same love of the media (although different forms of it). We both have families that love us dearly. Communities that respect us. It just goes to show that a senseless accident can happen to anyone and take a life away in the blink of the eye. I guess what I’m learning here, is that life is too short to be unhappy. I am tired of being a complainy pants all of the time. I’m trying to do things that make me happy, one of which will be writing more. Starting now. My friend and NEPA BlogCon cohort Karla has given me a gratitude journal. I started to write in it, but had to put it down over the holiday as things became too busy. I will pick it up again and finish it and perhaps even turn it into a Tumblr. I haven’t decided what I’m doing yet. I’ll get there eventually.
Speaking of Tumblr….
I have this little project called “Sweet Valley Sunrises“. It seems that people actually find it on Google and view it often which is interesting to me. It was kind of just a spinoff blog that I was playing around with. I kind of suck at photography, and just wanted to document some of the amazing sunrises that I see out here. Why sunrises? Because I’m up (to quote the Beastie Boys) at the breaka breaka dawn with my job. If you haven’t visited that blog lately, I encourage and invite you to do so! If that seems too overwhelming, watch my stupid crappy video. Yep, in addition to being a bad photographer, I’m also a bad editor. I’m multi-talented with badness. I think?
Cheryl Elston, the sister of Christy happened to find my blog. She recognized the garage and the shed and the deck of her childhood home and while there were painful memories in her past, she was so happy to get to see her home again. I sent her a message on Facebook and expressed my sympathy for the loss her family experienced. No parent should ever have to go through the loss of a child. It seems too heartbreaking to imagine. I received the following Facebook message back yesterday from Cheryl, and now I’m feeling all the feels.
Hi Michelle!! Funny enough, about 3 months ago I was trying to connect with other bloggers in NEPA just to see how others do it and i came across the blog page and your Sweet Valley Sunrise page. I thought… how cool i can see sunrises from my hometown! When i started to scroll down… i thought… boy, that looks familiar…. kept scrolling and my jaw fell open as i was looking at our shed and the neighbors house! What an amazing blessing to be able to see sunrises from my old back porch. Thank you!!! I have been meaning to reach out to say thanks and let you know I found it. Thanks for the candle for Christy. She would like that. She was also a total goober… so have a few glasses of wine and a laugh too. I am so happy to know that another family is enjoying my childhood abode and there are kids climbing the poles in the basement. Well, maybe they get in trouble for that like we did. Thanks again for the sunrises! We should chat sometime about blogging. Much love and a happy holiday to all of you! Cheryl
Of course, I would be amiss if I didn’t give a plug to Cheryl’s blog. Please visit my sister from another mister, but we shared the same house: http://mycuprunnethover312.blogspot.com/
And now my entire crazy life has gone full circle weird. Again. You’d think I’d be used to this kind of thing by now.
Anyway, thanks for listening. If you’d like to learn more about the unabridged history of Sweet Valley, please visit Ron Hontz’s website HERE.