Tag Archives: dad

Day 24: Christmases Past

Merry Christmas to those who celebrate. Here are some photos from past Decembers.

2006

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1998

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1986
christmas 1987

Guest Blogger Jim – I Was Never Alone

Today’s blog post is written by my brother Jim. Our Mom died a few days after he was born and my brother, sister, and I have all had to deal with abandonment issues in one form or another. Here’s part of Jim’s story in his own words.

*** Photo captions are available below Jim’s words. I didn’t want to interrupt.***


BabyJim1Hi, my name is Jim Masten. When I was born I did not know this, but my mother was sick until five days after I was born, when she died.

MomSunbonnetSueTo this day I do not remember any feelings of emotion towards my mother. For a while I had been really depressed and sad that I didn’t have a mother and I felt very alone and abandoned by God and my mother.

I feel that I’m being “abandoned” and I talk to my dad who also is very depressed about his loss of his wife (my mother). He always just says, “She was a wonderful woman” or “She would have loved you so much” and that really does not help me with the depression that I am dealing with.

MomTulipsSo, I turn to the Science and Health by Mary Baker Eddy and turn to the definition of Mother in the “Glossary.” The definition of Mother is something like, “Help” or “Caring” which, also does not help me. So, at this time I feel the most abandoned in my life.

Mom9PIn addition, when I met an important person in my life, Sheri Luster, I found out what motherhood was all about and what a mother is like. As I like to say, “Sheri is the mother I never had.” Even though it is kind of supposed to be the other way around.

jim and sheri spiffy at workAnyways, Sheri was caring, loving, and helpful. Which, did remind me of the definition of Mother in the Science and Health. So, I realized what a motherly figure in my life would do and it helped me.

JimSheriLastly, I saw my mother in Sheri and other women in my life.

silly faces with estey and jimI even saw my mother in my dad because he was a single parent and basically had all of the weight on his shoulders.

dad and baby jim professional photoThis led to me having a healing of realizing that I was never alone and that my mother and God were there right with me the whole time, I just did not see it. Also, recently when I was out of school sick for a week I visited a doctor’s office because of my sickness and I was nervous and scared and I felt really alone, like nobody was there for me. And then I realized that God was there, Sheri was literally there, and I saw someone walk by the door outside the room at the doctor’s office that looked quite like my mom.

proud mom after jimmys birthI suppose that could have been an angel or something but that was when my mental healing occurred for not feeling well physically and spiritually. So, that is how I overcame my feeling abandoned.

Jim's love from LA quilt

 

Want more? Jim has a Facebook Page. He posts daily insights and thought-provoking videos. It’s called Finding the Keys to Success.

 

  1. Here are some photos taken in the first few days after Jim (then Jimmy) was born. Mom’s looking at him with such love and appreciation.
  2. Mom, with a little creative consultation from teenage me, made this quilt while pregnant with Jimmy. She and Dad decided not to find out his gender until birth so most of his baby quilts have both pink and blue in them.
  3. Here’s another one of Jimmy’s baby quilts. This one is bright and cheerful, both of which it’s difficult to be while under the burden of depression.
  4. Here’s another pink and blue quilt Mom made. This one’s more simple and designed to be used, rather than displayed as wall art. There’s one more like this with kitties in the center. Maybe they’ll be used by children Jim loves someday.
  5. This is my favorite recent picture of Sheri and Jim. Don’t they look spiffy?!
  6. These two love their snuggles. Back scratches are often exchanged in church.
  7. Our sister Estey and Jim get the sillies when they’re together! Here they are making funny faces. She’s one of the women who mothers Jim.
  8. Here are Dad and Jimmy way back when he had peach fuzz for hair.
  9. Can you see how proud Mom is in this photo? She’s tired from the long labor too… but happiness shines through her eyes. If there’s ever a doubt that Jim was wanted all you have to do is look at this picture.
  10. I made this quilt for Jim’s 11th birthday.

 

I’m linking up to Thankful Thursday and Can I Get a Whoop Whoop.

A Little Bit of Dad

As I told you, my family rarely celebrated Father’s Dad on its calendar day.  So here’s my celebration post!

My Dad has always gone out of his way to show me that I’m loved and accepted for who I am. I’m usually pretty good with words but it’s difficult to find the right ones so you’ll know just how I feel about him. He’s shown up for me whether I’m doing well or not. I’m one of his greatest fans just as he is one of mine.

The plot-line of our relationship today goes something like this. We play phone tag and when we do connect end up talking for over an hour about anything and everything. He forwards inspirational emails and I send him dirty jokes. He earned a free travel voucher and gave it to me so I could come visit. He sleeps under a quilt I made. I wake up knowing I’ve always been wanted.

I’m the oldest of three. My sister was born right before my fourth birthday, and my brother after my fourteenth. I love them dearly, but it’s time to show some photos from back when I was an only child! Yes, they’re pictures of photographs in an album. Try not to oooooh too much at how cute baby Megan is. It’s about the Dad in the photos, afterall. 🙂 The first one shows Dad, Uncle Shawn, and I playing at the beach.

Beach Dad with Uncle Shawn

Here he is snuggling with me and my cousin Jasmine. Dad snuggling with Jasmine

He isn’t in this photo, but you can tell how I feel about him from the caption. I’m so proud, showing off his stuff! (Do you remember when computers looked like that?)
Dad's computer What a sweet mother’s day gift. Not only did we garden, we became mud monsters! Gardening DadThis last one might have been after my sister was born. I look a bit older and T-ball happened at our next house, I think. Anyway, I can just imagine the pep talk I got when Dad adjusted my hat. “Now Megan, pay attention to the game. I know there are flowers in the outfield but you really need to know when the ball’s coming towards you. Oh, and run towards the base. You can skip later. I know you’ll do great.”
T-ball Dad

Lovey Beanbags for Mary’s First Birthday

My niece, Mary Constance, is a year old this month. I remember waiting by the phone on the day she was born, and being so excited to meet her in November. I even got to give her a quilt in person during that trip. I wasn’t able to be at her first birthday party, but several of her extended family members were so I’m grateful for that. Everyone should be surrounded by people they love on their birthday.

Of course, photographs were taken of the cake-eating. I love how Mary is focused on sharing her cake. It’s a serious job.

Mary sharing cake

 

She allowed others to feed cake to her, too. It became a big ‘ole finger-food experience.

Mary having cake

My Dad, brother, and I wanted to give her something special. I’ve been dubbed the artist of the group, though my Dad’s a great writer and my brother’s a musician. Plus I used to work as a nanny, so I know a lot about age-appropriate toys. So here’s what I came up with.

Mary Beanbags

The beanbags, sewn by Mary’s favorite Aunt Megan (me!) are developmentally appropriate for a toddler. They’re good to squish and throw. As she grows, I’m sure she’ll learn her colors in English and Spanish and these’ll be good tools for that too as they’re primary and secondary colors.
Beanbag Qualities

Can you see the qualities embroidered on the front of each beanbag? My dad, brother, and I each chose two things we see in Mary Constance. On the back of them is the name of the person who chose that word for her. Now they’re customized specifically for her and – BONUS – they’re super gushy mushy lovey.
Beanbag Names

 

I do custom orders! These were invented for Mary’s birthday, but if you like ’em I can give you a quote and make some for your special occasion. Just email me and we’ll make it happen.  mrs.megan.null@gmail.com

Nine and a Half

Do you remember when you were little, playing hide-and-seek, or cleaning your room, and Mom gave you slightly more time by counting to nine and a half before getting to ten?  I have s’more photos to share before we get to the post about colors. Is this cheating? Kindof. I said the colors would be in the next post. So this isn’t a full post later, it’s just a half.

STLAlexandDadlookgood STLAlexhappydaddy STLHappyGirlsIlookgood STLJimandEsteylookgood STLMarylooksawesome

She Went to Jackman’s

I had intended to check out a quilt shop or two while I’m here in St. Louis on vacation. Maybe on one of the days when my Dad’s working and brother’s in school. Apparently my friend Sheri is a super-networking queen because almost immediately she knew exactly where I should go. When she told me they even sell long-arm machines I knew it was just the spot to check out.

As soon as I walked into Jackman’s Fabrics I saw that they’re serious about quilting. There are displays, examples, samples, whatever you want to call them, everywhere! They have a great class space and lineup. Their batiks selection is awesome and the sewing machine department has lots of options. I got to try out a mid-arm and a long-arm. This shop balances the modern and traditional pretty well so every kind of quilter/fabric artist/embroiderer is catered to.

Okay. Here’s the BIG part. No matter what quilt shop I go to, my very first reactions as well as the lasting impressions of the shop are of the workers there. These ladies were super welcoming, passionate, and informative. There was a class listed as meeting this Saturday that I was curious about and I got to go back to the classroom and speak to the teacher right then, even as she was in the middle of teaching. Sheri came with me and realized that she hadn’t been in a fabric store in a few years and had lots of questions…. which ended up with a personal tour of the store and someone walking around answering anything and everything she thought of. Again, super welcoming. If this store were in my area I’d be a repeat customer. As it is, next time I visit I may have to schedule some shopping time there.

Alright, photos time. Here’s what I bought:

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Here are a few of the sample quilts that were hung throughout the store. The pattern was always nearby and often fabrics were kitted, too.

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Koala in the Air

Just a reminder that I’ll be on vacation for the next two weeks. Here’s somebody I’m flying towards:

Panda MaryIsn’t Mary the cutest little Koala bear you ever did see? She flew to Dad’s (with her parents) from the other coast today. So excited to meet her.

I’ll be checking messages so feel free to write if you need me. Back to packing!