A project that builds gratitude day by day to build resilience.
Creator of the Happiness Box Project Initiative, a project where you write your happiness or gratitude each day, then open the box in the New Year. The Initiative is to teach joy and gratitude, to pass it on to others.
I can’t believe it’s the last Thursday of May and Monday is Memorial Day in America. This year is truly flying by. However, I have a lot to be thankful for.
Jessbooking is going well and I uploaded my first video last night. I did take a picture of the layout and it did get a lot of love. I think my channel will be successful, and I can’t wait to add more to it.
I’m thankful for David and my friends. What are you thankful for today?
That was my tag line with online dating. Most never understood what it meant or they just didn’t care to read or understand it.
With Pride coming up, I want to share some things about dating as an ace, especially as an ace dating an allo person. It can be challenging at times and there is a lot of anxiety on my end (I guess that is why I was gifted with the “ace and anxious” shirt that I’ll wear proudly at the Pride parade on 4 June). I’m lucky to have an understanding partner and I’m beyond grateful.
It’s hard talking to most people about my anxiety since aces make up 1% of the population and asexuality is a spectrum. Gray Ace, Demisexual, etc. I’m lucky there are groups out there and I can share my anxieties. Many have been where I’ve been and it’s okay.
Not everyone will understand me, but the ones that do, they are my village.
I can’t believe we’re halfway through May. The weather has been in the 60s for the past few days and I wish it could stay like this for the rest of the summer. Anyway, I have a lot to be thankful for today.
Last week, Ms. Sharon and I took a walk around Norristown. We found a used bookstore that supports the Norristown library. I decided to go in yesterday and I bought a book from a local author. Since I work part-time in a library, it doesn’t make sense to buy non-local author books since I can get them at the library, so I like to support the locals. It’s harder to put local publishing houses into the library system since their ISBNs aren’t as recognizable as something from a big name publishing house, so many libraries don’t carry local authors. They have to know them. That’s what I learned when I gave the library I work for copies of my books… it took them awhile to put into the system.
I digress, I’ve become friendly with the shop owner and yesterday she told me about an author meetup. The event is free and the first three people who reserve a ticket can get a free book. I reserved a ticket and got a book. I picked it up today and Kate greeted me. She greeted me like she was my best friend and we had a lively discussion. I know I’m going to be spending my lunch period in here after my walks, and I’m so thankful for this space. I know it’ll be a vibrant spot for Norristown and it’ll bring the community together. So grateful for this.
Of course, I am thankful for David. Yesterday he picked me up from the County and brought me to the library.
I was tired from working overtime on election day. I didn’t want to work the library, but here I am. When dad was taking me to work yesterday morning, we passed by this beautiful tree. I knew I had to get a photo with David under the tree.
Tired and moody and blah, but hugging him sort of made up for it. This is my favourite time of year (well, anything that can be photographed or make pretty photos).
Sometimes I struggle with letting people help me, especially people I love and want to help. Getting rides can be a point of contention for me. I am a non-driver because that is a safer option for me, and no medication doesn’t help the anxiety I feel when I drive. When I was learning at 18 and 19, both Nan and dad said, “you do what you are comfortable with. Don’t force yourself to drive when you’re not comfortable.” I failed the driving test nine times and after the ninth time, I told Nan and dad that I just didn’t feel comfortable. That was that.
Anyway, I digress. David has been helping me and there are moments where I refuse because I am Ms. Independent. Lately, I’ve needed some more help and Friday night he said to me, “even Ms. Independent needs help. Since we’re both trying to save money, when I can, I don’t mind taking you from the county to the library. I’ll be doing that in the future, anyway.” I agreed and on Saturday I asked him for help. I walked a lot in the city, had groceries and my skates, I didn’t feel like walking home from the bus. The bus never showed and I ended up taking the high speed line anyway. David didn’t mind picking me up and taking me home.
I asked him to take this selfie with me. That 15 minutes together was the highlight of my day. I am beyond grateful for him and I love him. We help each other and we’re both grateful for that.
I can’t believe we’re almost half-way through May. 2023 really has been flying by, yet that seems like every year. Regardless, there’s a lot to be thankful for today.
I’m really thankful for Ms. Sharon. Ms. Sharon is a friend from my old position and we kept in touch. I’m glad we can share our lives with each other and yesterday we took a walk together. We walked around Norristown and discovered a new book store opened. It felt nice to explore the new book store, then catch up as we walked.
I’m also thankful for Trinae. I’m looking to add an extra income and since I have a YouTube channel, I was thinking about creating a separate scrapbooking channel. I was talking about it with Trinae and they mentioned I could do something like that, and walked me through. They thought it was a great idea. I’ve been too tired, as that is the case during the week, but this weekend I want to work on it.
I’m also thankful for David, dad, other co-workers and my friends. What are you thankful for today?
4 May 1923, Evelyn Carmella D’Urso was born in Wayne, PA to Michael and Mary (Maffei) Durso.
Nan was a woman of many talents, a lot of love and life, and was a joy to those around her. Her last birthday with us was her 89th birthday, 4 May 2012. Aunt Kathy, Uncle Dave, mom, dad and I went to Legal Seafoods with Nan to celebrate her. This was two months before her cancer diagnosis where she was given only 6 months (and she lasted only 6 months).
Nan died three months shy of her 90th birthday. I have celebrated her birthday every year since her death, and even after the Celiac diagnosis in 2018, I’ve made her favourite cake: strawberry shortcake, gluten-free. Strawberry shortcake was Nan’s favourite and a tradition every birthday.
This year was a very special year: HER 100TH! Although she is not with us in the physical realm, she’s very much with me in spirit. David and I decided to celebrate her birthday twice. We also decided to celebrate what would have been Great Grandma’s 113th birthday (mom’s grandmom was 3 May).
On Monday, 1 May 2023, David and I went to a Taste of Britain and had a tea party in both Nan’s and Great Grandma’s honour.
David had me pick for him. Once Jen, our server, mentioned a frittata and baked beans, I saw the expression on David’s face and I told Jen: “Gluten-free tea sandwiches for me, frittata and baked beans for David. With two pots of Orange Oolong tea.”
The orange oolong tea was delicious. We toasted their honour and wished them both a happy birthday. Both women loved tea and both women loved going to tea parties. Both David and I love tea, and we both loved our meals. He let me try a bit of the frittata and while I’m not a fan of eggs, they were delicious. I let him try some of my gluten-free tea sandwiches and he thought the tuna and chicken were amazing.
David was impressed and he wants to go back, along with Erich, Justin, and Devon. I want to bring Kelcee, Kaitie and some other friends. Maybe we can all have a tea party!
Yesterday was Nan’s 100th birthday. David picked me up and we headed over to Saint Augustine’s cemetery. Nan and Grandpa C are buried with Grandpa C’s mother and father, under a tree towards the back of the cemetery.
Yesterday was breezy and chilly; 58 degrees, which is chilly for May. There were a few clouds in the sky, but it was mostly sunny. I led the way for David and once we got to the plot, I told him that the two others were Grandpa C’s mom and dad, whom I never met, and Grandpa C died 5 years before I was born.
I then said, “Happy 100th birthday, Nan! I’d like for you to meet David. I love David very much and he’s taking great care of me.”
He chimed in, “I try. You raised a wonderful woman and she takes great care of me as well. We try to take care of each other. You were like a mother to her and I’m grateful for you.”
I broke down crying and David held me and he started to cry too. We held each other in the middle of the cemetery. We paid our respects, wished her “Happy 100th birthday!” again and told her we would be back, with flowers next time.
David and I had a special birthday dinner for Nan. Kosher coq au vin blanc. I had extra gluten-free shrimp scampi left and David had it with his chicken.
As tradition, I made a gluten-free strawberry shortcake. We had that for dessert and fed each other.
I know Nan, his mom, Great Grandma and all of our other relatives were celebrating with us, and smiling.