This was the last picture taken when the family was whole. At the time, it seemed just like one more picture. All of us smiled, or what we call grin and bare it. But now that I look back I realize that we were lucky to have someone to request a group picture.
The loss of a father, than brother, brought us together again and again to talk over memories and remember the loss of these two loving ones. But we knew in our hearts that with time more would go home to God. Making time together even more valuable. Our next loss was our mother. At 91 she was by all means the the glue that keep us together. We would find that she had given us what we needed to keep the family strong.
I knew she was not only the glue but my corner stone that I live my life by. My dad gave me my work ethic and moral base. He never said bad about anyone. Only when we, the kids, got out of control would he step forward and shut us down. The two of them together, were a force to recon with. Strong, constant, and fair. As we grew older, we knew it was a lot to live up to, but isn't that the point, living up to who goes before you. In our case we had something wonderful to live up too and I thank them everyday.
God Bless those who try to be the best parents, and less the friends. When we got older we become their friends but always respected them as parents.