2004. RIP Little Cousin
Today marks 16 years since you’ve been gone. I don’t even think you made it to 40 years old but the years you spent here on Earth were incredibly memorable to anyone you met.
“You’ve got money” is how I comprehended the email that paypal had just sent me. It was the first online payment I had ever received from one of the first websites I ever built. That email sucked me in and got me hooked on website development and eConmerce and I’ve been building sites that earn money ever since.
For 15 years, approximately 5,475 days, I have been utilizing the powerful resources that the internet provides us to “increase awareness and raise funds” for myself, for my clients and for the nonprofit causes I care about.
A simple website provides 24/7 representation and when combined with email marketing, social media marketing, direct mail and some in-person and online “friend-raising”, it’s a winning combination.
Sometimes a single picture can totally crack me up because it reminds me of the "lingo" that me, Michael and Janie had. Sometimes all we had to do was look at each other to burst out laughing for hours and other times we opened our mouths a bit and would be crying, laughing about a particular topic for months.
Me and Janie named these photos "guido zito ghetto garden" and I swear I can hear her laughing right now...
That's a whole lot of work for one tomato salad...
So, it is VERY OBVIOUS to me that I was extremely happy and feeling very grateful in 2009 - AND, that I had way too much time on my hands
This is a very special photo to me. It was probably 15 years ago but it was one of the many times that I could afford to treat my Mom like the Queen that she was. He and I were partial owners of the Lighthouse Inn at that time. Managing partners. We hosted some family holidays there. We invited both our families and provided everything from guest rooms, banquet style meals, music, cards, games... and both our Mothers were the guests of honor.
I was glad that in 2015, she didn't pass on my birthday (she passed a few days later). I didn't want my birthday to be tainted by sad memories. But, it doesn't matter because she is in my head and heart no matter what date she passed, birthday included. She sacrificed so much to make sure that Jane and I understood that the world was ours and nobody could take away our power. We could do anything we set our minds to. She led us by good example, even though it couldn't have been easy. Any strength I have is due to my Mom. Any good I accomplish in life is because she let me know that I could.
Although I chose to "donate my birthday" to a RI nonprofit organization this year, it is because they have programs that inspire people to develop their strengths, just as my Mom did. I've met a lot of young people who would benefit from that kind of teaching.
I am donating my birthday for a good cause. I am dedicating my book to my Mom. Wait until you hear her stories. I'm not even half the woman that I had raising me. Thank you Mom... oh so much love. I hope your having fun up there with your kids.
2006. I Killed Thanksgiving. (work in progress)
I don't know if this was the year that I killed a Thanksgiving dinner that I was hosting. I will have to revise when the memory comes back but, I really killed a Thanksgiving.
I was having the whole family over. Did all the cooking. I remember the apartment I was in and I remember the family and new guests we invited. It all would have went off no fail had I not opened my mouth with a couple words. "I saw Joe today and he looked like John".
I had been cooking all the family favorites and my other was cooking his, but, my Mom was in Fatima Hospital and I needed to take a break and visit. I'm not sure what was wrong with her at that moment, had dementia and probably a urinary tract infection, but, they had her in a lock down ward for psycho's. Tied down. Masks needed. I was not a happy camper.
While leaving my visit to go and make my families favorite recipes, low and behold, my gorgeous brother Joe was signing in, getting suited up and walking my way. My heart got so full in one instant and then drowned in the next. His arms and legs were too thin. He was sick. Just as I had seen John be sick.
My heart was happy that he was there. My heart was broken to know he was ailing. I kept it inside until my family was around me.
When I uttered the words, "I saw Joe!", I had their attention. We didn't get to see him too much at that time. When I said, "he looked like John"... the whole family was reduced to tears.
We went off in small groups to discuss, in tears. Our guests didn't know what to make of it.
This memory is not finished.. just putting it down while I'm feeling the pain... to be continued.
During my purchase phase, I addedwww.SwingIntoSpring.club which was a website and project I worked on in April 2007 - one of the first few websites that I built and I had it saved I published it as is and it even still looks better than some of the outdated sites I come across every day. (I'll build a new one when time allows)
THIS was an incredibly FUN event.. and I'll tell you why. I wanted to get to know the people that I would eventually be partying with (I was living in Prov at the time)... so rather than just plan a fun event - I also booked 3 weeks of swing dance lessons for anyone who wanted to get a jump start and learn a couple moves. Well - we had a whole lot of takers and for weeks before the event, we hooked-up and had "pee your pants" kind of fun together.