Category Archives: Love

Happy Birthday, Baby Bean!!

This picture was taken about 24yrs ago.

JaLisa (about age 2; nearly 3) 93′-94′

I was in high school and had gone to a slumber hangout and took JaLisa with me. She always wanted to go with me EVERYWHERE and was never shy; cautious of new people but never shy.
As a child JaLisa was loud, ridiculous, funny, compassionate, loud, talkative, smart, friendly, generous, kind-hearted, spoiled, loud, imaginative, thoughtful, resilient, courageous, loud…
Here we are all these years later and she is still all of those things. She’s lived through a lot; more than most women her age and she’s still standing.

From birth I watched her scoot, crawl, walk and run. There was stumbling and falling but she got up and kept going.

From adolescence to adulthood, I watched her go through the same process from scoot to crawl to walk to run. Sometimes, things got out of order but Tomi & I, her grandparents and the rest of her ‘village’ were there to help guide, dress wounds from the falls, counsel and keep her moving ever forward.

And today, she enters her 27th year. She’s out there moving through life…from a scoot to a crawl to a walk and then a run. She stumbles and falls and we’re still here to guide her; kiss the boo-boos and hug the hurt and tears away. She needs to lean on us less, as is God’s design. More independence; less hand-holding. It’s like I blinked and my Baby Bean became a woman and I wasn’t ready.

Happy birthday to my Baby JaBisa Jell-no Bean!!

Black Girl Joy!!
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This is MY 40!!!

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I really am happy in this pic. I was at the spray park with the grandbaby and it was HOT!!

Yesterday, I entered my 40th year. Is my life 100% what I want it to be. Absolutely not! Am I happy, healthy and working my plan to get to where I want to be. ABSOLUTELY!!

All of our children and grandchildren are alive and healthy and living their best lives. I have a wife who loves and appreciates me for everything that I am and accepts me in spite of everything that I am not. My heart is full of joy and I am just happy being me.

For me, 40 means seeing some goals through to completion, somr lifestyle changes as I move closer to my surgery date and continuing to put my best self out to the world each and every day.

I thank God for another year where I can use everyday to let my light shine.

Happy Anniversary: The 21st Night of September

September by Earth, Wind & Fire is a great song. Who knew that this song, written and released before I was born, would become the anthem of my love and a theme song for one of my happiest days?
Twelve years ago, on this day, I met the woman who would become the love of my life. We have been together since that day. Tomi & I are like opposite sides of the same coin and we couldn’t be more perfect for one another. Three years ago, I started planning a commitment ceremony for us. During that year, my state pulled their heads out of their ass and made same-sex marriage legal, and our commitment ceremony planning became wedding planning. On this day, two years ago (10yrs after the day we met), I got to marry my best friend. It was an amazing day of celebration shared with our family and friends. I would do it all exactly the same every year if I could. So, in celebration of our anniversary, I will share the lyrics to a great song and pictures from my wedding. Because… LOVE!

September – Earth, Wind & Fire

Do you remember the 21st night of September?

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Love was changing the minds of pretenders

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While chasing the clouds away

Our hearts were ringing

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In the key that our souls were singing.

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As we danced in the night,

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Remember how the stars stole the night away

Ba de ya, say do you remember
Ba de ya, dancing in September

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Ba de ya, never was a cloudy day

Ba de ya de ya de ya
Ba de ya de ya de ya
Ba de ya de ya de ya de ya

My thoughts are with you
Holding hands with your heart to see you

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Only blue talk and love,
Remember how we knew love was here to stay

Now December found the love that we shared in September.
Only blue talk and love,
Remember the true love we share today

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Ba de ya, say do you remember
Ba de ya, dancing in September

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Ba de ya, never was a cloudy day

Ba de ya, say do you remember
Ba de ya, dancing in September

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Ba de ya, golden dreams were shinny days

Love bells was ringing
Our souls were singing
Do you remember, never a cloudy day

Adventure Time: Explore Washington

My Labor Day weekend started a bit early; last Thursday, Sept. 3rd.
Tomi chanced upon tickets to see the Seahawk vs Raiders preseason game at CenturyLink Stadium (Seattle, WA). Neither one of them is our team (Geaux Saints! WHO DAT?!?!?) but neither of us has ever been to an NFL game so…why not?! We both left work early and after changing clothes, we hit the road for Seattle.
It was a 4hr drive that was well worth it. The atmosphere inside the stadium was electric. It’s amazing to see, in person, how far a fan will go to show love for their team. There was face and body paint, signs, flags and so much fan gear. We had amazing seats and it was a good game. Definitely, an adventure to remember.

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We spent the night in Seattle and then drove home in the morning. Because I am a member of every hotel ‘frequent flyer’ club, we stayed at a $250/ night hotel for $35. WINNING!
We chilled around the house and rested Friday evening because we were worn out from the drive. Saturday was more of the same though we did go to the movies. We saw Shawn The Sheep. It wasn’t the funny we were looking for but it was a cute movie.
Sunday, we got up and my honey says get dressed; something warm and comfy with tennis shoes. She’s very spontaneous and I’m always up for an adventure so I get in the car and we headed to Mount St. Helens. It was not the warmest or clearest day but it was still beautiful.

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Obligatory monument selfe

I took a ton of pictures but my absolute favorite is this one…

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Look. At. God.

Happy Birthday To Me: My Month In Review

What a crazy, busy month this has been. I am just now able to stop for a breath.
I had two of my little cousins graduate highschool this month.

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Devontae and Alexis...they're dads are brothers.

At the graduation party I got to spend time with friends and family which was great. Because we live 4+ hours away, we don’t get to see family as often as we’d like.

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My cousin Jewel
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My baby, my mama & me
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Tiny cousins-Jayla, Daysha & Layla
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Rachael (mom) & Lexi
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Layla & I perfecting our selfie game

My newest baby cousin was born.

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Meet Baby Giselle

Then, there was my wife’s birthday! She got her motorcycle endorsement for her birthday.

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Then, my birthday came! I am serious when I say that I think it should be a national holiday. I look forward to it every year; the higher the number, the bigger the blessing.

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This is 39!

There were so many birthday activities and I was so full of joy! First, my friends Mel & Lee did a birthday karaoke shindig for me a few other of my cancerian friends. Shenanigans were abundant!

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Me & Nat Pack! Her birthday is the day before mine.
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MJ doing her thing
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Aleena Bobeena!
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Jennifer & Roman came to hang out with me
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Carissa

We had quite a time considering it was a Thursday night.

Friday night, my honey took me to are Floetry; one of my favorite duos. It was their reunion tour and I was so here for it!

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I was too excited and too into dancing and singing along to get many good pics but we had a blast!
The next day, we went on a steam train adventure with the Mt. Rainier Scenic Railway. We had a lot of fun and learned a lot about the rail and lumber history of the west aide of our state.

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Me with the conductors.
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Tomi & the conductors
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Playing tourist

We had such a great weekend and a great month! I can hardly wait until next year.

Weekend Adventures

My wife is very spontaneous which I love. Me? Not so much. Leave it up to me, I am going to plan every aspect of my day down to the minute. When we’re bored at home, she will say “Put some shoes on. Come go with me.” Though it goes against my nature, I trust her completely so I go without question. The result is usually a pretty grand adventure. I have a whole Facebook photo album devoted to our adventures and the things we come across.
Today, we set off on a drive looking for the Pasco Outdoor Swap Meet and ended up lost. We rode and talked and took in the scenery and next thing you know, we’re in Waitsburg.
We travel here on purpose at least once a year to go to the Whoopemup Hollow Cafe. Seriously, some of the best food in the area. After some Main Street foolery…we stopped in for lunch.

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Waitsburg-the board game.
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Looks a bit like Jumanji

This is one of the only places I’ve ever gone where every dish is seasoned to perfection.
I had a warm, asparagus bisque to start with.

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I had to fight to keep my manners in tact while shoveling this in.

Tomi and I shared a crawfish pie. It was a crisp-crusted flatbread that was an amazing marriage of flavors.

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I didn't want this to end. The flavors were heavenly!

For my lunch, I had goat cheese stuffed ravioli in a sweet potato sauce with collard greens. What?!

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AMAZING!!

I paired my meal with a local (Seattle) Scotch style ale called the Pike Kilt Lifter.

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For dessert, we had a mini, New York style cheesecake with strawberry-champagne sorbet and a strawberry compote.

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Num-Yummy!

What a delicious meal! Definitely not part of my regular eating plan but I love a good (occasional) cheat day.
The food was fantastic but the best part of the day was, of course, the company.

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My adventure buddy

For those that are curious, Tomi had an Oyster Po’boy with cajun-seasoned, yellow, sweet potato wedges. Yum!