Retirement is gonna look good on these two.

My Mom turned 60 years old today, but really I should be saying 60 years young! She looks great for her age and believe me, she knows it. She’ll never miss the chance to tell you one of her many stories about her customers at the bank who are left in total disbelief after they learn her age. Just last month when we were in Florida together someone thought I was her husband! Surely I’ll never hear the end of that one.

All kidding aside though, the fact is my Mom is just as beautiful today as I’ve always known her to be. Inside and out. Maybe even more so now that I’m grown and able to understand just how selfless a person she’s always been for us.

Happy sixty Mom, we love you. Don’t worry, it’s just a number, you don’t look a day over 30!

Mom, Dad, Alexis, me and Thomas.

Mom and Dad take Los Angeles by storm






















My Mom and Dad’s 40th wedding anniversary is today. I asked them what the secret is, after all these years. My Dad says, “She ignores me, and I ride my motorcycle.” Mom says, “There is no secret, you either love each other, or you don’t.”

Off the Southwest Florida Gulf Coast there’s a place called Estero Island. On that island there’s a seven-story condo called Sea Watch. On the 7th floor of that condo, there’s a unit that’s been in my family since before my time. I was just five months old my first visit. The Smith’s are still making memories there to this day.

My parents hold the keys to it now, and Alexis and I tagged along this year. It was her first time and I hadn’t been back in eleven years. It’s a special place, with a lot of history. It’s a place I’m very thankful for.















You forget just how much family you really have until you get them all in the same room. We did just that for my Grandfather’s 86th birthday. All his grandchildren, some of us scattered across the country, came together for him. Can only hope all those years down the road the story goes the same way when it’s my turn.

My Mom’s side of the family got together for us at my Cousin Michelle and Mario’s house too. It was a great time. We ate, we drank, we laughed, and saw lot’s of faces. Some I hardly recognize anymore.

Going back is always a nostalgic flood. A reminder of where I come from. Things get so busy, you almost start to forget. But we always go back. Thankful for a small place in a big world that will always have us. You know what they say, home is where the Italian beef sandwiches are.

Mom before she was Mom.

At least they aren’t using MapQuest printouts anymore.

Mom and Dad exploring the Huntington Library.

There was no “Four”

My Dad, manning the grill, next to the pool, under the Florida sun. Following his dream of getting his family the hell out of the Chicago winters.

Here’s to him, and my Mom, for showing me what it means to take a chance and follow a dream, and for always encouraging me to follow my own.

My mom being my mom. Love her so much.

My mom forbade me from taking a picture of her and my dad wearing their tie-dye t-shirts together. Putting that picture here just seemed like the right thing to do.

My beautiful mother doing what she does best, loving us unconditionally. Today’s technically Halloween, but everybody knows Mother’s Day is everyday.

Love you Mom, from the bottom of the heart you gave me.

Bless her heart.

You’re everything Mom. No distance can change that.

My first car. My close friend Michelle’s Grandmother’s car. A brand new, used 1992 Ford Torus with 3 hubcaps, no AC, and a half broken tape deck. But she runs.

This is my Mom and Dad’s home. I forgot a window next to the door. My room was the window on the right.