It’s In The Way That You Use It.

I had my first troll experience on Facebook, in a way.

I guess it’s not really a troll because it was someone I have met in real life, but she didn’t like that I had a bit of happiness from winning an expensive bathing suit from Brooklyn Active Mama blog. I guess in between discreetly crying into Scarlet’s preschool handkerchief napkin, caring for two kids, and working on a really lengthy photo job, I shouldn’t have been happy about the bathing suit at the same time as the news that I can participate in a service for my grandmother by phone, since I couldn’t fly to Florida on a day’s notice. Thanks, troll, for telling me how to grieve. The thing is, and anyone who knew my grandmother can tell you this – my grandmother liked expensive things. She liked fashion and expensive bathing suits. I know she’d be cheering me on for feeling happy that I won a bathing suit, that I otherwise could NOT afford. Is that what you want, troll? Just my sob story? I can’t afford expensive bathing suits. My son is two and my daughter graduated preschool and I don’t know what to do with myself. My beloved grandmother passed away and I don’t know what to do with myself. I cry into paper towels and clean laundry socks. I rejoice over knowing I can hear the Rabbi speak at her service, and I rejoice that I won a bathing suit I cannot otherwise afford. My grandmother would be proud. Please don’t take away my happiness and tell me where to place my sadness.

I would never dream of telling you how to rearrange yours.

And now onto some happy, which I need. Luckily for me, Rabia and Lisa have another great #TuesdayTen linkup, and I’m happy to play along with them this week: Ten Things About Dad. And so, I’ve got some things to say about some dads.

The Liebers

Ten Things I Love About The Dads In My Life:

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1. It’s the way he walked me down the aisle..

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..and didn’t bat an eye that I chose “Drive” by The Cars as my father/daughter dance song, because I can’t really stomach “Butterfly Kisses” anyway, and he has always been the one to drive me home..tonight. And safely.

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2. It’s the way he always made me feel safe in those first four years of my life. It’s the way my early, low-level anxiety nightmares were soothed on his lap, while he read me “Getalong Gang” books. It’s the way he stood on line for hours to get us those Cabbage Patch Dolls. It’s the way I never really felt so safe after he was gone, until I learned my way again. I’m still learning. My way again. And again.

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3. It’s the way he’ll go on roller coasters and spinny rides with her because I won’t..

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..even when he isn’t even the father of my child, but is the father of my child’s friend:

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4. It’s the way he pulls jellybeans out of stuffed animal magic tricks, a TARDIS out of a ruddy garden shed, and a princess out of a daughter.

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5. Warning: #5 is not safe for work or young family members peering over your shoulders!! It is, however, diabetic friendly.


….remember, I warned you…

….can you handle it?….

Ok, then. It’s bachelorette-parties gone bad. It’s the way he laughed and laughed when he saw that I made him a penis cake.

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6. It’s tickles, tricks and “Trot, Trot to Boston.”

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7. It’s in the gentle strength, the touch, the diligence and patience.

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8. It’s surprising your family with a puppy, and getting away with it too, because she’s just that awesome of a dog.

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9. It’s picking out a 20 foot Christmas tree, and buying/constructing a bed as a surprise for your little girl.

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10. It’s where you come from…

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..and where you wind up.

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Happy Father’s Day to all. I’m sorry I couldn’t show more appreciation on that very day, as things took a downturn with family tragedy, but you were all in my heart on Father’s Day, and you always are.

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  1. Oh my goodness Tamara, I can believe someone would troll you. And over a swimsuit?! What gives! You deserve to feel great about anything you’re blessed with. Don’t let anyone rain on your parade, especially considering you are going through so much emotionally right now.

    What a lovely tribute to the fathers in your life! πŸ™‚

    1. Thank you, dear! That’s right – a swimsuit. Perhaps I should parade around the streets in it, in the hopes she will see me.
      I was surprisingly unaffected (too much, anyway) by the comment – maybe it’s because I do have a lot going on to let that little thing make me too sad.

        1. One of my cousins left a mocking comment about how dare I have a post that combined loss and Father’s Day! I cracked up. This is how I write, always!

  2. Congrats on your awesome new bathing suit, Tamara! Now post a picture of you in it. This was awesome and I love how you talk about your dad. That was a great cake and I love the look on his face! And the pics intertwined with your own family. Priceless! Is that a for real deal Police call box? I’ve not only never heard of one but never seen one! Wishing all of you our very best always, our friend πŸ™‚

    1. ha! Well a photo, eh? You never know.
      I wasn’t totally clear here but the cake was for one of my fathers-in-law. Yes, I have two! I honored Cassidy, my dad, my father, my friend’s husband, and both of my fathers-in-law!
      Heavy duty post here!

  3. That troll? Unbelievable! I am glad you found a moment of happiness in that bathing suit and that it even connected you to your grandma in a way. I am also glad you took the troll for what she was and didn’t give her any power.
    Also – that penis cake? With the icing on top, I mean the tip… Awesome!!! xoxox

    1. Thank you! Yes, she would have loved it. She always fixated on food and fashion, no lie. You just had to love it. The troll? Eh. I like to confront some demons or trolls, like here, but otherwise it hasn’t even been on my mind. I guess it’s because I AM grieving, in my own way.
      The tip… totally vulgar, right? Cassidy did that part.

  4. Okay- I’m not even gonna complain about being FOURTH- cause I had a friend over ’til late tonight- and we gabbed long… and now I am here and I am really upset that you had someone kick you when you were already down. Who said what? I want to know!! Do they know you even?

    Oh I am boiling!!!!

    Follow up with me, okay? And I’m so so sorry that happened. Ugh. I know you are so sensitive during all this emotional stuff and hard hard loss and transitions.. ugh.

    As for the rest of your precious post- oh my HEART! I just loved LOVED how you portrayed these amazing men in your life- both past and present and really? Present, always.

    The pictures truly say a thousand words…

    But your words always add the real richness.

    I can’t help but feel that you are one loved and blessed woman.

    1. Chris! You’re actually #5! Someone must have commented while you did or something. I’m so sorry!
      Ok, the troll is not a friend – it’s someone I met in real life ONCE. A much older and less sensitive person than any of you. I’ll tell you what happened but it’s pretty much what I said above! It’s not a troll in the sense that it’s someone who preys on bloggers, but it was a troll in the sense of just being totally rude and out of line on Facebook. So. Whatever! It might have bothered me more, but I’m too busy actually grieving someone REAL.
      I do feel loved and blessed, and I feel loved and blessed by YOU!

  5. Just perfect. Everything.
    Even the penis cake (that is a good rendition!).
    I’m sorry about the troll. I can never understand when people feel like they have a right to tell people how to feel.

    1. Thanks! Cassidy did some of the more lifelike parts (the tip) but I ran and bough the cake pan and made the batter and baked it. Team effort, people.
      Trolls are weird. This one is pretty.. well… small on the scale. I guess they all are. It’s not bothering me as much as it would otherwise. I actually didn’t think about it much yesterday but I wanted to confront it.

      1. A troll is someone who preys on bloggers or other social media forms – they don’t have the guts to say anything in person but they get a kick out of being rude and starting stuff online. Now this isn’t a “real” troll because we have met in person, but she was very rude and out of line and I decided to talk about it. Good riddance, I say!

  6. YA!!!! Take THAT you troll!!! You are so amazingly awesome Tamara and I’m so glad you called that troll to the carpet…and then charmed us all with your beautiful “dad tribute” through pictures. Love you friend! Sending your strength and courage today!

    1. Thank you so much, my dear friend. I was going to ignore it but nah… not my thing.
      Thank you for all of the love, strength and courage!

  7. I’m so angry that YOU had to deal with a troll!!!! I hope she is ashamed of herself. But trolls are usually jealous and feel the need to put you down. So look at it this way, your life , your blog, your new swim suit— people go loopy over!!! Love your tribute to all the great dad’s in your life. So so sorry for your loss too:(( It is never easy. Big big hugs. Xo

    1. Aw, thank you. I think I’ve been lucky so far. I guess everyone deals with it at some point and as they said at BlogU, it means we’re doing something right and getting noticed!
      I may wear that swimsuit through the streets of my town so she can see me. (kinda kidding)

  8. Oh for heavens sake. I am so sorry that you had to deal with all that nonsense. Congrats on your suit and I am so sorry to learn about your grandma but so happy that you will be able to participate in her service. And your dad tribute is just so perfect. Love, love, love!

    1. Thank you so much! Some people are just a little too miserable, aren’t they?
      I’m nervous about the funeral, as nervous as I would if it were in person, and I’m grateful I can listen in to it.

  9. First off, how did I miss this on FB and seriously what is wrong with some people. You certainly have every right to be excited and love that you won that bathing suit from Nellie’s blog (so happy it was you and yay!!). Seriously, love you Tamara and have your back. Don’t let this person get you down, because they apparently are just totally jealous of how awesomely amazing you are my friend. Hugs and like I said couldn’t love you more if I tried πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ xoxo!

    1. It wasn’t a very big thing on Facebook and I had friends defending me but I had removed the offending troll so it just became a deleting fest for everyone who had defended me because then they looked like they were talking to no one! I took it down because it had bad mojo.
      I feel so blessed to have you all having my back! And I have yours too!

  10. Wow the nerve of some people. I thought it was your grandmother looking down on you when you won the suit. I love your outlook on Father’s Day and the different fathers in your life. Very touching to see the admiration you have for all of them.

    1. I thought so too, Jenny! I had just been complaining to Cassidy that I had no swimsuit and Cape Cod is coming up in a month. My Nana would have LOVED that. She would be all, “You go girl with that swimsuit! Rock it!”
      I am very lucky in the dads department!

  11. i actually noticed that comment and just side eyed it. Some people. I have a blog friend that lost a child recently and some people actually have the audacity to comment if her and her husband post a picture and are smiling, someone even felt the need to “remind” them their son died. as if they forgot and now they are apparently never allowed to even smile over memories. i hate people. but on a positive note, i love your list!

    1. You saw it!? I wish I had seen it sooner. I was at work all day and it sat there. I was so pissed that I hadn’t blocked her sooner because it would have disappeared. As it was, most of my friends were fixing to defend me and they were afraid to say anything in case she was someone close to me.
      She definitely isn’t. Just some older, clearly batty woman I met once. Ugh. Anyway, thank you!!!

  12. I just love your tribute to the many dads in your life, and am jealous that you have so many good photos to go along with your words! So beautiful, Tamara!

  13. Such a beautiful tribute, with your words and photos.
    I am sorry that your piece of happy was tainted by a troll, but I think your thoughts on it are exactly right. No one can tell us how we feel.

  14. I love this post and I log how you incorporated ALL the dads in your life. I know the actual day was tough for you, but I hope you are doing o.k. and I’m glad you found some joy in the midst of it – even in winning an expensive bathing suit!

    1. What’s so funny is that it was just going to be Cassidy. Then it was going to be my dad. Then my father too. Then my friend’s husband. Then I added both fathers-in-law too. It came together like a chorus!

    1. haha.. She’s about four or five decades older than you.. and you have those several weeks of boot camp in. My money’s on YOU!

    1. Thanks! The outdoor shower is a bit of a rite of passage at my husband’s family’s Cape Cod house. I loved watching him wash the baby after a day at the beach. It was beautiful.

  15. What a gorgeous post! Your pictures really do say a thousand words! As for the troll, Geez!!! Some people are not happy unless they are cutting someone else down. I’m so sorry for your loss and so happy that you won something amazing! I’m sure you grandmother was smiling down!! xo

    1. Thank you! I mean, maybe she was jealous that she didn’t win a nice swimsuit. I do plan to wear it downtown in full view of her because that’s where I last saw her.

  16. Hehe, I love that cake! So sorry about your FB troll. I hate people like that. It’s like high school drama…how old are we now? You don’t need to explain yourself to anyone. Good for you for winning that swimsuit! You are going to rock it this summer and your grandmother will be so proud!

    1. The cake is a bit much, even for me, but Cassidy did the “decorations.” So we were proud! And thank you – the troll got blocked. I’ll probably see her again and I’ll be sure to have Scarlet call her a “douche.”

  17. I would have a hard time letting go of a troll’s comments – I just can’t fathom why people are rude just for the sake of being rude. I think you handled it perfectly. And in the same post as a penis cake? Absolutely perfect.

    1. You know, usually I’d care. I’m SO thin-skinned, like they were talking about at BlogU. Crying for a week and all that. I just found… I didn’t care because I had real stuff to worry about. And she really isn’t a threatening presence in my life, I’ll tell you that. An insensitive tool, but hey. Maybe I’ll bake her a penis cake?

  18. The list is amazing. You are lucky to have had some awesome dads in your life. As for the troll. You know we’ve got your back, Tamara. Some people have nothing better to do than to judge others. That person’s probably just unhappy, which is sad, but not your problem!

    1. There’s nothing better than hearing that – that you all have my back. I like to think of this giant army next to me. Of course the troll in question is pretty much a non-issue in real life.

  19. I’m laying in my hospital bed and I can’t believe what I’m freaking reading. Are you serious?! Over a swimsuit? You’ve won some great prizes on our blog and I was happy you did. Why can’t people be happy for others without letting the green eyed monster in? You deserved some happiness after all you’ve been through. Don’t let them take your sunshine away. Do you want me to kick her butt for you Brooklyn style. I’d do totally do it for you. Love you mama and sending virtual hugs and kisses your way.

    1. Did I ever tell you that we lost one of the shoes at SeaWorld and someone stole it? Argh! My favorite shoes. At least we still have the carseat. I’ve gotten some great stuff.
      Honestly this is an old woman with some clear mental issues – I don’t think she was jealous or anything but if you want to come and kick her butt, I wouldn’t stop you!
      And I’d get to see you.
      Feel well!!! xoxo

  20. You should send the penis cake to the troll, Tamara. πŸ˜› DWL! Some people need to get a life ASAP. Rooting for you for the swimsuit, and grieving the loss of your grammy with you. My heart still hurts when I think of both of my grandmothers, both of blessed memory, even though it’s 30 years since one passed and 20 for the other.

    1. haha, Alison! I would but all that time/money. However, it might be worth it.
      She’s a sad sack. I’m not!
      My other grandmother passed away about ten years ago or so, and it still can hurt like yesterday at times.

    1. I like #4 too! And thank you – I wish I could wear it and just like…dance in her face while wearing an expensive swimsuit. That would be so rude.

  21. Well you know what they say; you know you’re on another level when you can get hate mail lol. Sorry to hear that. Hearing negative comments is never good, and I’ve learned to grow a thick skin and click “delete” when it’s just too much. My rule is, if you would never consider saying that to my face, then it doesn’t belong in the comments.

    No one keeps tabs. Just because someone is going through bad times doesn’t mean that they can’t enjoy something. In fact, when I’m sad or pissed, I’ll read or watch something funny just to get out of the slump. Don’t worry about what that person think. In fact, you should upload a picture of you wearing the expensive bathing suit lol.

    1. So true! It’s just weird because it was a Facebook friend and had nothing to do with my blog. So I guess my FB status has been elevated to Troll Status. And I agree about if you wouldn’t say it to someone’s face, why on a public website?
      And ha!! I blocked her on FB or else I would totally do that. Maybe I should unblock her and friend her and then just put photos of me in a bathing suit on her wall.

  22. Don’t let trolls in. Online or in real life. Feel sorry for them and the fact that they feel they have to waste time meddling in your life when they could be focusing on theirs. <3

    1. So true. And thank you. I probably would have cared if it wasn’t completely ludicrous, and if I didn’t have real grief to work on. And.. if I didn’t have the support of all you awesomes.

  23. What a beautiful, touching tribute to the love of all kinds of dads. And calling out a troll to boot! Much love to you in your sorrow. You win this day, my dear. πŸ™‚

    1. Thank you! I really feel that way. And I can just drop it. Although the ideas people had about baking her a penis cake and/or refriending her on Facebook just to post photos of myself in a bathing suit on her wall are not bad ideas..

  24. that’s petty that someone commented about the bathing suit. when you lose someone it’s ok to be happy about the little things too.

    Great post about all the Dad’s in your life

    1. Amen! And thank you. This post came to me pretty late last night but I was proud of the way I handled it. More maturely than in the past!

  25. Stupid troll, I sense a major hater with a jealousy complex. GRR! But omg i love this post! I love all the love! And I’m really enjoying your music selection, “Drive” is a classic! I LOVE the Cars! I’m going to have My Best Friend’s Girl stuck in my head all day now. YAY!

    1. See it’s not even that! She’s just some old woman I met once. I swear. Not another blogger (probably doesn’t know what blogging even is), and not jealous of my swimsuit.. I don’t think.
      Just someone with a major insensitivity problem.

    1. Every comment here has touched me with its support or heart, but this takes the CAKE (so to speak) for humor. Made my day!
      I may bake her a special cake.

  26. Congratulations on winning an expensive bathing suit. Trolls suck πŸ™
    I loved seeing all you pictures from this post. Is there a cake mold for a penis cake or did you craft that all by yourself? I’m glad he got a good laugh from it πŸ™‚

    1. So the short story is that my crazy bridesmaids made me a penis cake for my bachelorette party (which was really tame by any other standards). My future father-in-law thought it was hilarious and he kept talking about it. So a few years later we thought it would be funny to make him a penis cake for his birthday. He’s diabetic so we found a very low sugar recipe. I bought the cake mold at a local lingerie store in town. They have a whole section of bachelorette party supplies. Who knew?!

  27. What a beautiful tribute to the wonderful dads in your life. And seriously F that troll, trolls are just people with nothing better to do than make someone feel bad about something they wish they had. And wear that bathing suit with pride! And congrats on winning the bathing suit. I love winning things, I rarely do, and I am always super excited and surprised when it happens.

    1. I rarely win things too and I remember entering the contest on a very popular blog and thinking I didn’t stand a chance. I don’t own any bathing suits, except my old Victoria’s Secret one and it’s just so skimpy. That’s fine for adults only but I go to the beach with other preschool parents a lot! So this was a blessing.
      Trolls are the worst.

  28. First of all, I’m sincerely happy that you won that expensive bathing suit! I mean, you won it, it’s something that you/we should be happy about. And I feel like this has something to do again with my blog post about choosing happiness πŸ™‚ Being happy to win that bathing suit doesn’t mean you’re not grieving or sad about your grandma at all. You even made a point that your grandma will be proud of you, I’m sure she will. I loved reading this post a lot. Very well written as always. I told Rabia I’m going to linkup but I haven’t posted anything today yet.

    1. It pretty much all comes down to choosing happiness, doesn’t it? This troll should have kept her insensitive thoughts to herself. What is the point of being rude? I keep joking that I’m going to plan to see her in town and wear the bathing suit and start dancing for her.
      I love Rabia’s linkups!

  29. I loved the photos of your dad and the cake you made him LOL! Sounds like you have a fun family. Yay for you winning a suit – who cares about the troll? LOL What Gigi said ^^^, I am glad you are able to take part in your Grandma’s service from afar.

    1. Gigi kinda made my day there!! She is the best.
      The service was really beautiful. I cried a lot during it and I was thankful for what I had. Saying goodbye is just really hard.
      And a little cheering up over a swimsuit is something I’m proud about!

  30. I still haven’t called my father – I sent him a text but that’s just awful. I’ll be visiting him for his birthday in August so he’ll be happy about that. A little rum makes him happy so I’ll bring him a bottle -or whiskey. πŸ™‚ Hope you are coping well with your loss love and take it easy. Happy Hump Day Tamara -Iva

    1. I didn’t call my dad either. I texted him and I wrote him this post, but he knew. He was busy traveling with my mom to Florida for the funeral.
      My dad loves his whiskey too. He asks for Crown Royal every Christmas.

      1. Smart man – Crown Royal is one of our favorites but so is Jack Daniels.. We’re looking to expand our scotch/whiskey selection in the next few months/years so that will be sa-weet! Hope you’re doing well love! -Iva

  31. Whoa, Tamara! That’s is just so inconceivable to me that anyone would try and steal a little bit of happiness from you! You have had an uphill battle lately in that department. We all grieve differently as well. I lost my dad last year and I was there when he took his last breath. His death effected me deeply. Even now I have my moments but we still go on. We still must find joy and laughter in our days. Even if a small thing like winning a bathing suit. I have to believe your grandma had a small hand in you winning that because you needed that little bit of happy! This person has shown you exactly who they are so hopefully you can block them and their toxic ways from your life.

    This is an extremely beautiful heartfelt post about fathers!

    1. Thank YOU! I would never steal someone’s happiness just to do so. I’m all about love and light and good thoughts. This troll is just that.. a total troll.
      I’m so sorry about your dad. That sounds like the most intense experience on earth. I’ve never been there for anyone’s ending.

  32. I love the line “pulling a princess out of a daughter” and I love the bed Cassidy built for Scarlet!!!! Great men in your life indeed. They certainly make us who we are and who we are going to be.

  33. I love that song too! I laughed at your cake because I remember my mother in law telling me a story how she made for someone while in the army. And I can’t believe someone trolled you, that’s just… ugh. I’m speechless. (And that rarely happens!)

    1. I need to hear more about that cake story!
      And thank you for being speechless! I really thought I’d live a troll-less existence. For one.. umm.. I’m not a troll. For another, most people wouldn’t like me when I’m angry. It happens every 10-15 years or so, and it’s like a volcano.

  34. Aw, sweets. I can’t believe somebody trolled you on FB over a dang swimsuit. I’m so so sorry about your grandmother but happy that you could participate in her service over the phone. Hugs to you my lovely friend. And this was a beautiful tribute to the fathers in your life – I LOVE your penis cake. And all of your photos. xo
    Thinking about you so much.

    1. Thank you, my dear. Being trolled is shocking. At least it wasn’t on the blog. That would really upset me because this is my safe place. Just stupid FB and I’ve met her in real life and she probably knows she sucks.
      The funeral service was really beautiful and heart-wrenching.

  35. Down with evil trolls. I’m so sorry you had to deal with that. Isn’t it amazing how you can get so many wonderful and supportive comments then one stupid person can ruin it and make you feel awful? I absolutely LOVE this post. Dads are the best.

    1. It’s so true. I was just telling Kristi above that if it happened here, I’d be much more sad. This blog is a safe place for me. Facebook really isn’t. I usually avoid confrontation but over time, I’ve had to hide and unfriend rude people.

  36. Tamara, I totally saw the comment. I was so annoyed by it that I started to write a very detailed response back something along the lines of howdareyoutellsomeonehowtogrieve etc but then I stopped myself. Honestly I didn’t know if that was a family member, client, teacher–who knows–but I didn’t want to create a negative energy on top of the negative energy that troll created. I say all that to say–celebrate your wins no matter how big or how small or WHO is watching.

    1. What’s funny is that I didn’t see the comment for HOURS! I was working most of yesterday on a short term assignment and I missed it. Ugh. I wouldn’t have let it stay there at all. My friend was the one to write back a retort and then email me to apologize. I hadn’t even known any of it!
      I wonder what you would have said…
      And she is nothing to me, but I can’t say you can tell her off in the future because I blocked her on Facebook so she can’t come trolling back!

  37. And, so much more!! I love this post because for each example you gave I plugged someone in!!
    That troll person better watch out – they don’t even realize who you are and how deeply you feel. They need a swift kick in the ass and I would be more than happy to do just that!!!
    Hope you are making it through the week OK!!!

    1. Thank you, Kim! It’s true – about how deeply I feel. And that’s how I write all of the time – I mix it all up because life is a mix and it’s ok to feel the way we feel, when we feel it.
      The sad thing is that I am a nice person but every 10-15 years or so, someone pushes me to the point of volcanic eruption.
      And I gotta say – it didn’t happen this time and that’s good. I usually win these things and I just don’t have time for that anymore.

  38. I’m noticing now in that pic with your dad that it looks like Des when he was a baby. The one when you’re laying on him as a baby. Is it just me?? Dads are pretty awesome, right? I love how they can make you and loved ones feel secure and be a refuge for them. πŸ™‚

    1. It makes sense! I can see some Des resemblance for sure.
      Dads are the best. I love that feeling of safety. Sometimes, now, I’m still looking for it because it was lost to me.

    1. Oh, thank you dear! I know you understand. It was only on Facebook which is troll central, but I didn’t notice it for hours because I was so busy working.
      I’d be a lot more crushed if it happened here – in my safe place.

  39. Sorry about the troll… Maybe grandma gave you that bathing suit! I’m sure that she wouldn’t want you to not rejoice in such great way! Anyway, those pictures of your dad! I love that you have that dad in your life and so does Scarlett and Des! They really are blessings and it’s great to see them just be fathers!

    1. I feel like she would do that.. give me that bathing suit! It made me so happy I shrieked out loud. I’m still happy about it, troll or not troll.

  40. I’ve been thinking about you a LOT this week, and I feel guilty that this has been the first few minutes I’ve had to come reach out. I can’t imagine someone being so insensitive about the way you choose to celebrate something good in your life, or the way you choose to remember someone you loved so dearly.

    I think the idea that grief = mournful, depressing sadness is really really antiquated, don’t you? That’s what makes it extra confusing, in my mind. I remember after my mom died, all my cousins came for the funeral, and it had been a long time since they were all there at once. PLUS there was a roomful of delicious food–comfort food like homemade mac and cheese and Ritz-cracker-covered casseroles—and we all stayed up late playing video games and watching movies. I remember feeling so happy and then wondering if I should feel guilty or sad or a thousand different “should’s.”

    I’m no expert by any means, but I think saying goodbye to someone as special as your grandma is a whole, whole lot bigger than tears and sadness. I’m sure there’s a lot of chuckling over funny memories and enjoying connecting with relatives. And delighting in unexpected surprises, like bathing suits. There should definitely be that. Just my two cents, from someone who does not know you personally but is a very, very big fan.

    1. PS That picture of Cassidy and Scarlet where her sweet little eyes are scrunched up tight in anticipation? It is so precious that I can’t even find words to comment. Geez Louise it’s beautiful!

    2. Thank you so much and please don’t feel guilty. We all have our own pains and stresses and life stuff!
      I love that story of you sharing comfort food with your cousins. I always find it strange that funerals have banquets or luncheons after. I always think, “How can anyone eat when life is so hard?” And you know what happens each and every time? I’m FAMISHED. And I eat. Every time.
      Thank you for being a fan. I’m a fan of yours, and more importantly, I feel like your friend too. If you Facebook, find me at Tamara Klein Bowman! Then if any trolls come… well I’ll know you’re there!
      If you don’t Facebook or you dislike it, here is awesome too.

  41. Ok this is going to sound really bad, but I don’t REALLY know what a “troll” is. Someone that harasses you on-line? Well whatever it is… she sounds like a bitch. That should be taken with humor and in a “I got your back girlfriend way” πŸ™‚ because I don’t really swear and I am super passive. lol. The day someone insults me on MY blog, I will probably quit for a month! eeks….

    Congrats on the win!

    The cake…. too funny!

    1. I actually just learned the term the other day! Generally it’s an anonymous blog comment that is RUDE. In my case, it wasn’t a blog and it wasn’t anonymous but it was rude so I’m calling her a troll. I somewhat know her in real life and she was very insensitive and obnoxious and if I ever see her again.. I’m going to hit her in the face with a penis cake or shimmy around her in my bathing suit.
      She’s in Northampton!

      1. Is it a blogger? One that I possibly know? Yikes…listen to me, it shouldn’t matter who it is. What should matter is that you don’t let it affect you. πŸ™‚ But I like your style!

        1. Nope! It’s no one who would even come to a blog, to be honest. She’s a little old lady who lives in this town. (doesn’t that sound like a nursery rhyme?) I met her through town events. I blocked the ever-living crap out of her too! Yay!

  42. Congrats on winning the bathing suit! I think that’s pretty darn awesome. As for the “troll”…sadly, there are people who really seem to have nothing better to do with their lives.
    Such a beautiful post about the dads in your life. My dad and I danced to “Magic” by the Cars. It was our song when I was little.

    1. Ah! That’s so awesome! I love “Magic” and I love that we both chose these totally non-mainstream (for weddings) Cars songs. It’s the best.

  43. well done!! Tell that troll to get back in her lane!! hmphf!
    as for everything else – love it. every word.
    and penis cake.
    that was way too much fun to type πŸ˜‰

    1. Or under her bridge!
      I’m so glad you typed it. I was fielding comments left and right because askimet thought they were all spam for saying the “P” word! I let them all in.

  44. Like someone else said, you know you have arrived when someone bothers to troll you. It’s still lame and unnecessary. Please don’t let it bother you and enjoy your swimsuit!! This is a wonderful tribute – I love how you honored so many different dad roles out there.

    1. So true. I have arrived! It was really lame, though. She was blocked off of Facebook. My silent rebellion. If I see her again, I’ll probably flash her or something! (kidding)

  45. I am so sorry you had to deal with a lame troll during such an emotional time. And I’m so happy you won that expensive bathing suit, you deserved a little bit of good news amidst everything going on.

    And you ONCE AGAIN left me with chills and froggy throat and tears…I only write this constantly in your comments on your blog cause you are the only one who consistently gets me. You’re such an amazing writer and person and I’ve been thinking about you this week, bloggy friend!

    1. Please. keep writing it. I will never tire of hearing it, my friend.
      The troll sucks for sure. She’s really just a clueless older woman. I kind of want her to read this blog, but I doubt she even knows about blogs.

  46. Know what your next post is?
    You in a f*cking amazing bathing suit…
    Who in their right mind says that to anyone. Really?
    I’ll send my Viagra people and sex toy people their way.
    But I love that you took this and found the happy. Jelly beans…penis cakes…I mean…life is good.

    1. haha! It will be. It just hasn’t come yet. The “incident’ took place on Facebook so I already unfriended/blocked her. So what I really need to do is unblock her, refriend her, and put photos of me in a bathing suit all over her wall.

  47. Tamara,

    I am so sorry someone felt the need to legislate your grief.

    What a wonderful way to commemorate your father. I enjoyed your pics. I know Father’s Day is especially hard. xoxo

  48. Except for the troll part, I grinned all the way through this post. I don’t know if you knew the troll or not but it seems that people who don’t know each other are really opinionated and mean on the internet these days. Sorry you had to experience one of them. Congrats on the bathing suit and again I am sorry for your loss. I bet the troll wouldn’t appreciate that I put that in the same sentence. Anyway you have the most wonderful photos – and that’s what had me smiling from ear to ear.

    1. I’m glad I put the troll stuff in the beginning so you’d have lots to grin about after it.
      She’s honestly so insignificant that I even wondered about posting about it. It’s not even something I think about at all, after the initial irritation. However, I’m glad I said what I said.
      You putting two thoughts in the same sentence made me grin!

  49. Congrats on the bathing suit. Sounds fancy! There are so many people out there that just have the time of their life being cruel to others. I genuinely feel sorry for them! Anyway, let’s move on to your awesome post. My dad waited in line for hours also for my cabbage Patch Doll. I loved that thing more than life itself when i got it. He then made me a crib to keep her in. Dads rock, they really do!!

    1. Some people just have real chips on their shoulders! Proud to be someone who doesn’t. I like your take – I just feel sorry for them.
      I love that you have a similar Cabbage Patch kid story. The crib? So heartwarming!

  50. I loved this post when I read it yesterday. I don’t know why I didn’t comment then. I love it again today. As far as the troll goes, I hope you aren’t giving her another thought. I think that is the advice you gave me! I don’t get why people have to try to take away a little bit of unhappiness. I feel sorry for her, because obviously she isn’t happy. It’s ok to be happy about something even while we are sad about something else. And I think your grandma would have wanted you to be happy.

    1. You didn’t comment then because you were too busy emailing back and forth with me! Just kidding. Always happy when you make it over.
      I do remember giving you advice and I’m glad I’ve been taking my own advice!

  51. Boo trolls! Why do people feel a need to tell others what to feel? Just the thought ruffles my feathers. I’m so glad for you that you are/were able to attend your Grandmother’s funeral in whatever way possible. This is a sweet post about the fathers in your life. Looks like you’ve had a wonderful lot of them.

    1. I appreciate that so much. It seems like we’re all in this together – down with trolls.
      The funeral was so sad and so beautiful. So hard.
      Just the thought that anyone tell me that in a house full of two young kids, I can’t feel it all.. sigh.

  52. I just love the joy captured in these photos…just true love from dad to his children. Sorry about the troll. That must mean you are hitting the big time! πŸ™‚

    1. ha! I guess so. Haters have to hate sometimes. This particular troll is SMALL and insignificant. I haven’t even thought about it in days, which is so nice.

  53. Such a sweet list! Your blog always wins the prize for making me both laugh and tear up in the same post. (Enjoy your new bathing suit—whenever, and as much, and as often as you want to!)

  54. Ugh, people are horrible! I’m just catching up and I’m so sorry that awful troll said that!!! So glad you defriended her. If that ever happened on your blog, you know your readers would attack!!!! πŸ˜‰

    1. I not only defriended her, it was my first block! Felt so nice! I want to unblock her, though, just so I can put photos of myself in a bathing suit on her wall. I love my readers so much. I’d do the same for all of you.

  55. These questions were fantastic! I love how we were introduced to each member of your family. It was getting a little hard to keep track. Also, kindness and manners are super important to learn. To me, they are the most important!

    1. Rabia, the scandal goes on. They don’t have the hot pink color I want! They have gray, but that doesn’t get you noticed as much. Sigh.

  56. As much as I love blogging and social media, the one thing that really bothers me is how entitled people feel to pass judgement on your life but I try to remember that it’s oftentimes has more to do with the troll than the trollee and that it’s just easier for them to pass judgement on someone else than to look at themselves in the mirror. You absolutely deserve a new swimsuit and should be happy about it!

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