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January 18, 2012 - Michelle Oliver
Soooooooooo, since becoming a wife, mother and grandmother the month of January has taken on a whole new persona for me. It used to be just a "blah" month once the New Year's hoopla died down and it was back to school routines or work day schedules and the only break in the month came in the form of a snow day.
Then, I got married. When we got engaged I was looking at an early spring date - March or April. My husband said, "No." And I mistakenly thought that he wanted to wait longer and I was dismayed, thinking about not wanting to get married in the hot summer months. Anything above 74 is too hot for this northern Wisconsin native. So, I was a bit taken aback when he said, "How about January?"
Serious? He wants to get married in the coldest month of the year?!
So we did. And I have the photos to prove it. Red cheeks, bleary eyes, frozen smiles, windblown hair and billowing dress. Yep, it was about a 5 degree wind chill when we walked outside after the wedding. Due to getting married out of town in Washington DC in a very small private ceremony, we decided to cut ourselves a break and have the reception here in Wheeling, but to hold it a week later since all of Jim's family is from here and they wouldn't have to travel for it. It sounded like a good idea when we were planning. Who knew that the biggest snow storm to hit the area in 10 years would choose that very same weekend to blow in - it must have gotten someone else's invitation by mistake. But, our friends and family are a hearty bunch and not one of them missed the party I'm glad to say, inspite of the blowing blizzard, drifting snowbanks and bitter temps. January 1985 was one for the books.
January 18, 1986 saw us in the hospital for the arrival of our first daughter, Kathryn Michelle.
January 11 1989 saw us in the hospital for the arrival of our seond daughter (3rd child), Kelley Elizabeth. And since she was born on Jan 11 I got to spend my anniversary in a hospital bed - terribly romantic.
January 18, 1994 saw us in the hospital for the arrival of our third daughter (5th child), Emily Sue. That was the year of a great deep freeze with temperartures at minus 20. I remember looking out the window of the hospital at the blowing snow and feeling incredibly guilty that I was in a nice warm hospital room while my mother had my four young children bundled all together in our queen size bed and all they could do was stay there watching TV all day because our drafty Victorian home was just too dang frigid for them to do anything else.
Yes, Katy and Emily share a birthday. Katy was going to be 8 and kept insisting that she wanted the baby to be born on her birthday and I kept forestalling her, telling her that it would be very unlikely that they would have the same birthday and that even though it's nice to share, it's also nice to have your own special day for your birthday. She would not be convinced and if I remember correctly she did say, "I told you so."
January 24, 2009 saw the arrival of our first granddaughter, Madelyn Kathryn Afton, aka Maddie Kay, born in the frozen foothills of the Rocky Mountains in American Fork, Utah.
Amazingly, like all the rest of my female offspring, my daughter-in-law, Megan, also has a birthday in January - closing out the month of birthdays on Jan 28th. However, unlike my female offspring, she had the good sense to be born in warm, sweet, sunny California. Looking back I wonder if I should have held out for that April wedding..........
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