I just got to meet Karen’s niece and nephews today.
They are the offspring of younger sister Kris and her husband Allan.
High school sweethearts.
Allan is the rock.
A father who has raised three highly intelligent critical thinkers who are a joyous mix of ambition and passion, while maintaining a sense of wonder in the world.
Now if you want to see the true meaning of family, spend a little time with the Thornberrys.
If you don’t come away with a sense of what it truly means to belong to a family, then you don’t understand a mother whose love of her children and husband supersedes all else.
A mom who made sure she prepared and continues to prepare her progeny for success in their respective spheres of influence.
The freedom the children were allowed growing up included teaching life lessons in fiscal responsibility by managing their own bank accounts at an early age. She imparted to them the crucial lesson of the importance of establishing and maintaining good credit.
She has taught the love of animals to her kids, and they are all genuine animal lovers as adults.
I am very proud to be a part of Karen’s family and the glow on her face (before she powered down close to a full liter of Mondavi) was worth everything: selling the house and moving cross-country with our two “sons” Bruiser O’Halloran Corleone McDuff Diaz and Murphy O’Callahan Corleone McDuff Diaz.
Her oldest son is a success in his job and is buying his first house.
His fiancée Zoe is a treasure.
A Hoosier, you can actually feel her genuine love for animals, and she volunteers to find shelter dogs new forever homes.
She’s going to heaven.
Two of the kids still live at home and you get the feeling that if they wanted to stay there until they were 50, Kris would be OK with that, too.
She’s an amazing woman and her daughter is exactly like her. I am sure neither would admit to it, but it is obvious (Shirley MacLaine: “It’s like looking in the mirror!”) What I really love about her daughter is she definitely has the whole YOLO thing going on and I can relate to her on so many levels that way; living vicariously through her as she goes from continent to continent studying the Arts. En bref, she is seeing the world.
Youngest son is too young to have it figured out, but he has a plan emulating the same path his older brother.
Going to school and educating yourself is every bit a necessity in today’s world as eating and sleeping. The days of gunslinging in the job market are long gone.
So, hug your Mom wherever you are (I’d give my good leg if I could hug my Mom one more time) and know the importance of being the heart and soul of a family unit.
Kris and Allan do.
And they will continue doing that until breath leaves their bodies.