Archive for the 'General' Category

May 14 2008

Still Crazy After All These Years!

Monday Rick and I celebrated seven years of marriage. Our anniversary also marks the nine year anniversary of the day he told me that he loves me. It was an unusual event only because the way that he told me I actually thought he was breaking up with me. But then, when he asked me to marry him, I thought I was in trouble for complaining about the size of our hotel room in San Francisco. In my defense, the room was the size of a postage stamp, reminiscent of “Barefoot in the Park”. Seriously, one of us had to sit on the bed so the other could walk thru. Even so, my complaints had all been the tongue in cheek sort. So you can imagine my surprise that morning, when he sat me down and proceeded to ask me to marry him instead! As we set off on our adventures for the day we called my family to tell them the good news. My brother, being a minister, asked if he could officiate the wedding. Rick and I thought this was a wonderful idea. We loved the thought of our family and friends participating in our special day in whatever capacity that they wanted to. And so we spent the rest of our vacation making plans for our wedding and considering the perfect date. We didn’t want to wait too long, but wanted a date of significance as well.

Then the unthinkable happened. My brother passed away two weeks before our wedding. I found myself planning his funeral instead of putting the final necessary arrangements in place for our wedding. But then four friends of ours came to our rescue and took over the wedding plans so that I could be where I was needed most. When Rick and I discussed our options about the wedding, we kept coming back to one thing, that Marc had been so excited about us getting married, he had even ordained my mother so that she could perform the ceremony in case he was too sick (because I had refused to look for a back-up minister, having told him it was him or not at all, I would not take that away from him). We knew if we postponed to a later date we would still always remember what had passed, but that by going ahead with the ceremony as planned it would be a way of honoring Marc’s wishes and that was what felt right, that was what Marc would have wanted too. We have never regretted that decision, and whenever we have reflected on our wedding day we have always marveled at the love that we were embraced with, not only by one another, but by everyone present.

Our friends gathered together other friends and they all worked to create a magical, mystical place for our special day. It enveloped us in it’s warm embrace on May 12th, 2001. For those fleeting moments time seemed to stand still and we were transported into a fairy tale where the dragons were all friendly. Each year Rick and I journey back to this safe place, if only in our minds, and marvel at the peace and quiet of it all, of the love we felt wrapped around us. We were blessed by so many and so much love. Our gratitude is so immense there are no words sufficient to express it.

Thank you for giving us the memory of a lifetime!

We continue to count you all as our blessings, we love you!

3 responses so far

Feb 16 2008

Significance of My Picture

Published by under General

I wasn’t too thrilled at first, when I saw that Rick had chosen my photo to replace the header for our family Blog. I won’t even go into his comment that he needed a wide photo, too many puns! I immediately began searching out a photo of Cory or at least one of me with make-up on! But none were as good as this one, and I could not understand why until I examined this photo more closely, and it was not until I stopped being so self-critical and really looked at the picture that I knew exactly when this picture was taken (without even looking at the photo log). When I told Rick, he was certain it was from our first trip years earlier, but when he checked he learned that I had been dead on. Here is the wonderful story behind the photo:


You may recall the original header was of San Francisco, our favorite city, where Rick and I took our first vacation together in September 2000, when he proposed. So when we returned there in January 2003 for MacExpo we were excited, even bought a new Mac iBook for the event, and drove there in my Acura, much to the detriment of my back. We arrived at our small room, which reeked of smoke, and immediately ventured to the corner liquor store, where we bought enough alcohol to get us through the week and a room deodorizer spray that, thankfully, worked amazingly well, and I sank into the ancient but rather deep bathtub. We were not deterred as we settled in for a week of walking, information gathering and purchasing. We walked the expo by day and the city by night. The world was our oyster and we were intoxicated! By the end of the Expo we were ready to head home and get to work. We had Big Plans for Gardner Graphics!


This photo was taken on our last day. We had checked out of our room and headed to the wharf, and were riding on some of the oldest trolley cars on tracks in San Francisco, which I was standing in and you can see the wooden window frames on either side of me. But what makes this photo special is the twinkle in my eyes… Cory had been conceived just a couple of nights earlier, unbeknownst to either Rick or myself. Though we sensed something momentous had occurred! So that smile has a whole new meaning for me now. And the photo? It is the first picture I have seen of myself in years that I now truly Love! Why? Because of Cory, yes, but also because it reminds me how much my husband has always loved me for who I am on the inside, that every time he looks at me he sees beauty, and it shows just how much fun we have together!


Thank you Rick for giving me so much with such a simple gesture.
This was the best Valentine’s Day present ever, I Love You!

5 responses so far

Feb 13 2008

Happy Valentines Day

Published by under General

This is a special Valentines day wish from our special Valentine.

Daddy please put this on the Gardner Family Website and wish everyone a happy Valentines day.

Butterfly Heart

His name is Cory pictured here:

Cory New Years

2 responses so far

Jan 01 2008

Good Bye 2007

Published by under General

And don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.

It wasn’t all bad. My nephew Jason and his wife Myah had their first baby Taylor. Born 4-26-07.He was 7 pounds 3 ounces and 19 inches long.

Thormod Family

And then there is my Niece Crystal and her husband Brian. Their son Jaedon born 1-16-07.

Vital Family

Both are healthy, happy and doing great!

Cory, Candace and I are healthy. I have lost 35 pounds.

That would be the Good News.

My father lost his battle with Cystic Fibrosis in July. His health had been deteriorating for months culminating in a collapsed lung. While he did recover from that the aggressive pattern of the disease left him with less lung function day by day. He passed July 26th 2007.

Dad At Our Wedding

My fathers attributes were many. A man of character and wisdom. Not to mention a great sense of humor.

You are missed by so many Dad but I will always be your pal.

Shortly after my dad’s passing my Uncle Ernie lost his mother and two days later his own life from a heart attack. This was totally unexpected since he had been given a good bill of heath from his doctor just before it happened. As you can imagine my Aunt Arleen having lost her brother and husband in just a few weeks was almost unimaginable.

While all this was happening we found ourselves largely deprived of our primary income due to management changes at DMX Music. They are the company I had been doing most of my contract work for. After years of being their “go-to guy”, I found myself anything but in favor. Management was literally making things up to make me look bad and ignorant of my track record with DMX/AEI. Their clueless management approach and total lack of honest dialogue with me has been finacially trying for us and proved to be quite detrimental to the company’s performance. They are a major player in this business and the Western Region under this management has been run into the ground. It’s more than sad, it breaks my heart. Stupid is as stupid does.

Meanwhile due to the previous bankruptcy they filed sticking us for over $10,000.00 (that in itself a hard pill to swallow), we found ourselves on the receiving end of a $26,000.00 lawsuit asking for money back that we received. Oh yes it’s completely legal BK law. But more than we could handle. We might have been able to make a deal but it would have been for half still more than we could pay. So… One bankruptcy has lead to another and we close this year with one of our own.

I no longer drop everything for DMX. I work for other companies every chance I get. I should have been doing this as soon as they faltered but the truth be told it was my comfort zone and they are a really big fish. Not to mention that I have serviced their client base for 30 years, older than the company itself. It’s just like stocks, you gotta diversify.

I hope that 2008 brings the opportunity to heal the wounds that 2007 inflicted.

With life lost there is life anew and with all the evil in the world there is the comfort of family.

One response so far

Dec 01 2007

Today my husband discovered blogging

Published by under General

While I was rearranging furniture in the living room my husband was taking calls from clients in front of his computer, a typical Saturday in our house ~ okay, not the furniture aspect, but definitely the phone calls and the computer part. Only I was not aware that he had tapped into a new world where there were multiple interfaces to choose from. No, not just multiple, that hardly describes the pages I saw him scrolling through as I became dizzy from leaning over his shoulder waiting for the end of the page, which did not come before I finally gave up waiting ~ Ah, freeware, such a delicious concept, yet seldom do we have the time or patience to explore it, nor have I been so fortunate, before now, to have found something as fascinating as this that will allow us to create our own Blog, to share our lives, our stories, our pictures, with family, friends, and yes, complete strangers… And here is my husband, ecstatic and childlike in his discovery of this new software and all that it can do to open up the world of sharing with others his (truly amazing) photographs ~ This really is something to be excited about, and to interact with others and get their input and ideas, well that is just icing on the cake because, let’s face it, friends and family’s opinions don’t count no matter what we say…

He has been asking me if blogging is something that I would be interested in, to which I have emphatically said “NO”… and now, having read my first paragraph back to him, he is walking through the house chanting the equivalent of “nah, nah, nah, nah, nah, I told you so”. Smug so-and-so… It isn’t that I don’t want to get into blogging, believe me I could see myself blogging 24/7 ~ and there is the rub! With a four year old son, two full time jobs working from home, and sole house keeper, the attraction of such a creative outlet is a strong draw (example ~ the furniture still standing in the middle of our living room, paintings still un-hung, dinner uncooked, laundry unfolded, but who cares, I am writing, yahoo!). How many times have I had to work late because first I had to write responses to emails that either rubbed my belief systems the wrong way or were just so ridiculously stupid and insulting that I had to make some intelligent response in case any of my friends might have actually taken the bait? It is this that caused me to say “NO” when asked if I would like to Blog, because I know, like candy to a child, drugs to an addict, and alcohol to Lindsay Lohan, I just cannot stop once I start, and all else will go to hell. Not fair to our son, and our home projects are already getting ahead of me! So my dear husband, I will not be able to resist you ~ your blog, that is, and so, occasionally you will go without clean jeans, sorry… But you will have this delightfully witty reparté.

Rick, in his carefree, pre-blogging years



Cory, an example of Rick’s best work, both with a camera and genetically




4 responses so far

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