This week I wanted to share with you those things that move me the most. So perhaps today it is fitting that I share with you the people that give me wings, help me trust that I can soar and sometimes even kick me out of the nest with a hearty 'huzzah!' and a blind faith that I will spread those wings and fly!
My parents, John and Gail Prais. They taught me to be generous and kind, to treat everyone as a friend, to give of my talents freely, to appreciate music and food and laughter.They likely kicked me out of the nest as fast as they could, but I knew that I had a safe place to land and the confidence that I could do whatever I wanted.
My family gives me the space and time to chase my dreams. They know what is important to me and support me making my way. Tiny Dancer, Rocket and my husband Paul at my Gallery Q exhibit that opened one year ago today. I know there is nothing finer than their love and that spurs me to do that best that I can.
My best friend, Paul Hintz. This is a picture before our first big date, the Homecoming dance, October 12, 1985. And I can tell you that if I knew at the moment that this picture was taken how that night would change my life, I couldn't have been smiling more. This was the start of something wonderful. That is the day that I had the first inkling that I might spend my life with someone. He is my rock, my guidance, my cheerleader, my lover and my very best friend. I am proud of who he is and to have the honor to be called his wife. He believes in me and that makes me want to do more to show him that I can. I love you, babe!
My Tiny Dancer. She has laugh that I love and a smile that makes me giggle. I love to watch her doing what she does best and has fun with and that encourages me to find those things that bring me joy. And to dance even when it seems that all around me is falling apart. To trust in the beauty of my body and my mind and to be genuine and true.
My son, Rocket. He is a model of perseverance and determination to me. I admire his tenacity and strength of purpose. He is able to dig his heels in and get the job done when it needs to get done. He shows me that with practice I will achieve the skills needed to be successful. I want to learn that sort of focus like he has on the ball field and his easy way with making friends with everyone.
My sister-in-law, Mary. She is the best shopper in the world! She is great at finding deals and seeing the possibilities. She is a generous soul and someone that I have really become so fond of. I love the way she is always putting special touches on everything for everyone (everyone needs an Aunt Mary!) and I hope that I can learn from her example.
Graduation, May 1986
Lynn(a) has been my very best friend since I moved here when I was 10. She has been a constant companion through all of my life's ups and downs and curves and bend. Even when we don't see each other for a long stretch I know she is always there. Now that we are in the same city with kids of a similar age, we have the chance to be together again like we were back then, even if it is not enough for my tastes. She is like the other half of me. She balances me out (analytical to my creative) and spurs me on. It is good to have a best friend from the past still in your present, and I recognize that as very rare.
Lynn(a) and me 2010 at Pacelli Homecoming
And my newest bestie and birthday buddy, Heather Powers. The fates were aligned when we first met and it has been a wonderful ride ever since. Heather gets me in a way that other friends and family just don't. She is a mentor and role model to me but also the best kick in the pants that I have ever had. I feel very blessed that I took a chance and emailed her after seeing her gorgeous design in a beading magazine. This teaches me that you never know where your next friend will come from and to treat every relationship as special.
Who gives you wings to fly? Who kicks you out of the nest? Who nurtures your soul, encourages you, makes you want to keep going? Do tell!