Grieving the loss of Nana has been difficult

January 13, 2021

So it’s only been about a month and a half since Nana (mom) passed away. And though it seems like Ania and Ryan are doing a little better with each day, I am still deep in sorrow and perhaps even depression. I honestly feel like I am frozen in time. Like my entire life just […]

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Kindergarten Dropout

January 11, 2021

So it was the first day of kindergarten and you’ve probably heard this story a million times already but it’s one that I find comical and will lead to more. Nana (Isabel) and Poppi (Joe) brought me to school for the first time. It was Russell Struble elementary in Bensalem. I remember walking in and […]

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An Unexpected Honor

January 8, 2021

Tuesday afternoon, I had received a message from Joe asking if I would like to make an image that would be placed between the wheels on the back of Optimus. Something I never expected to happen and took me by surprise. The image would be in memory of his mother Judy. If you recall, I […]

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Helping those around us

January 4, 2021

We should strive to help others. My sister Rachel sent me this song at bottom of page. Several of my sisters struggle with depression and anxiety in many forms. For me it was the traumatic  birth and after with the flu that almost killed me after I had Iva. The hospital was not listening to […]

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My First Day

December 27, 2020

The beginning of my life seems like a good place to start my story. 1973 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania at Parkview Hospital (no longer exists), Isabel was in labor with me. In her own words ” You almost killed me” and trust me, she never let me forget it. Dr. Skovinski was set to deliver me […]

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Why 2020 was the BEST, WORST year of my life

December 19, 2020

30 years from now, what will you think of when people mention the year “2020”?  Will you think of your job? Or perhaps the job loss you suffered as a result of a worldwide pandemic? Will you think of all the plans you had at the beginning of the year? Or all of the opportunities […]

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My move to Bloomfield from Poland

December 17, 2020

When my mom (Wiesia) was about 13 her mom (Maria Glatz) moved to the US.  (Can you imagine leaving behind 2 of your daughters so you can come to the US?) Mom and my Aunt Ela (Ela Bak) pretty much were on their own.  My aunt moved to the States when my cousin was 4 […]

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Warszawa – my birth place

December 16, 2020

I lived in Warsaw for the first 11 years of my life.  Ul. Wspolna 41 m 12, Warszawa. It was a city life, ironically filled with a lot of freedom.  I would take the bus, tramwaj (sort of like a tram/trolley), walk to school, get snacks and ice cream with  my friends, go to their […]

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Where It All Started :)

December 16, 2020

Where it all started… Well you see my mom ( Theresa Durzewski Tonello) was cooking me for 9 months! Finally I came but not before my mom had roast beef!! No lie, its my favorite thing to eat :). I had it at my wedding in 2012 hahaha! Delivery was not cool for mom T. […]

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My first dream with Nana after her passing

December 10, 2020

Nana came to me in my dream last night around 3 AM. She looked great and young, like in her late 30s. Dressed how she normally would with jeans and the red sweater she liked. We were on some kind of train but standing outside overlooking a beautiful mountain range. The train wasn’t moving. I […]

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A dream Ryan shared with me

November 17, 2020

So Ryan told us about a dream he had last night that I thought was very poignant. He wrote out the dream and I am copying and pasting it below. I thought it was really cool and just wanted to memorialize it. Love you dude ———– I had a dream that I had gone back […]

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COVID-19

November 8, 2020

The pandemic of 2020. COVID-19. In one word…you SUCK!! I’m sure for anyone reading this, a simple keyword search on COVID will give you plenty of information on it. So I won’t bore you there. But it was responsible for the shut down of an entire country, and the demise of any plans for success […]

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Relaunching America’s Footprints

November 8, 2020

After almost 5 months of time spent upgrading the website, today is the official “relaunch” day. I took the plunge and converted the website to a mobile-friendly version, completely eliminating the old site and all of the ‘free’ members that never used it. I’m starting fresh with the hopes that we can finally build it […]

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Ryan’s 5th grade honesty and good choices!

November 8, 2020

You got in the car after school and after checking first to see if we knew anything, you shared a story from lunch about your friend Michael, who apparently threw a water bottle up in the air and then got in trouble by Mr. Dudley. He happened to be standing behind you when it happened, […]

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Ryan goes up near stage for dance

November 8, 2020

This happened in January 2016. As you know Ryan hasn’t been doing well in front of groups with the singing and dancing thing. We’ve started guitar lessons with Shelley and that’s helped. But school we still struggle, partially due to the teacher Mr. Reese. But this week we got the following email from his teacher […]

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Ryan’s tough week in 2nd grade

November 8, 2020

Specifically it was the week of January 11th, 2016. Ryan had a tough week at school. On Monday, he had a planned meeting with Mr. Reese (his music teacher) and Mrs McDonell (guidance counselor) abuot his lack of participation in music class. We requested this meeting to see if they could find ways to help […]

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Lucky visits Ryan summer 2016

November 8, 2020

AUG 22, 2016 – lucky (Ryan’s elf on the shelf) visited today! This was the text in the letter that was with him. It came after a horrible day yesterday. ——————————————————- HELLO HELLO HELLO HELLO Ryan!!!!!!! Yep – you’re not dreaming. It’s me. Your Christmas-time pal. Boy did I miss you!!! So you may be […]

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Ryan’s very interesting start to 5th grade

November 8, 2020

First day of 5th grade for Ryan was…interesting.  He is currently attending Pleasant Valley Intermediate school. However, days before school opened for the new school year, the building was closed because of mold. That’s right…CLOSED.  They cancelled the first few days of school and then setup a plan  for students to attend classes at Pleasant […]

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Snowflake elf asks Ryan for a letter

November 8, 2020

We got a message from Snowflake elf asking Ryan to write a letter why Lucky should come to our home this year for the holidays. Apparently Lucky’s family is having a hard time lettering him go because of the new baby they have. Here’s what Ryan wrote (I typed it for him): ———————————————————– Attention: Lucky […]

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Several “firsts” for Ryan

November 8, 2020

Some of the many firsts for Ryan that I’ve documented along the wa…   2015 Ryans 1st dog walk We were visiting Julia and Rob in Oswego for KITT’S appearance at wizard world august 2015. Ryan really enjoyed their dog Rex, and him and I took Rex for a walk today. It was the first […]

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