Hello everyone! Marks blog has officially been taken over by a couple members of his tribe. As some of you may know today is Marks 40th birthday. So we decided since he loves to tell you about us we would in turn tell him and all of you who Mark, the weird beard blogger is to us!
My brother Mark is one of my favorite humans on this entire planet. He has many titles to be proud of like son, brother, husband, nephew, godfather, uncle, guaranteed partner on any dance floor, real life chandler bing, and most importantly Dad. Much like Chandler Bing Mark says the most inappropriate things at the most inappropriate times. That is why he is my favorite person to sit near at any family event. I chose Mark to be the godfather to my daughter Maya because I knew he could care for her the way he cares for his own girls and guiding her through life and not afraid to answer the “hard questions.” Thank you for the laughs, tears, awkward hugs, and developing dance moves. Happy 40th birthday you old bastard.
Happy Birthday to my son Mark on his 40th birthday. Over the last 40 years you’ve been both a handful and a blessing. From your days of “shirt in or out”, “there is no hair gel left- I can’t go to school like this” and “ that was Brians’s butterscotch schnapps in my car” to “ I’ve asked Amy to marry me and she said” Yes “ to welcoming 2 beautiful daughters into the world- you have remained true to yourself. Your introspective views to who you are and what you see around you often give the rest of us pause, and help us recognize the truly meaningful things in life. I applaud your relationship with your daughters and know it takes a lot of work to make it special. I do know that your daughters will grow up to echo the words of Jim Valvano when they are older:
“ My father gave me the greatest gift anyone could give another person, he believed in me.” I love you, always. Dad
Happy Birthday Mark! 40 years ago today my life changed forever. Over the years I’ve watched you mature (yes I said mature) into an amazing son, brother, husband, father, uncle, nephew, and friend. I’m so proud to be your Mom! My wish for you is that your life becomes all that you want it to be. Always remember this, “A son will surely outgrow his mother’s lap but he will never outgrow her heart.” Love you always, Mom
I first met Mark ten years ago when Doug decided he was ready for me to meet the family my first impression: He was Doug, but slightly older. I think what makes me laugh most when I look back over the course of the decade I have known him is how different he thinks he is. But to me, the Mark I met 10 years ago isn’t so different than the guy I know today.
Here’s the Mark I have come to know (and love):
● The Family Man: He isn’t afraid to bust his siblings chops, most especially his sister and her so-called run-ins with the cops-but he’s the first person in line to jump in and help if needed.
● Mr. Fancy: He’s more cultured than he cares to admit, including his lucrative candle-making career, red wine aficionado status, and aspiring chef skills (even if his stuffing “tastes like what a Christmas tree smells like”).
● A Big Sap: Mark isn’t afraid to cry, whether it’s because he just watched Meg shine on stage or Kiley just told a better dad joke than him-and that’s because he has one of the biggest hearts I know.
● The Guy with the Sweetest Dance Moves: Okay, maybe not.
● Just a Big Kid at Heart: He’s the biggest kid in an adult body I know (aside from Doug,
I may not have the years put in that everyone else in the family does, but I like to believe I am a pretty good judge of character. And Mark, you are one of a kind, and I am lucky to have you as part of my “tribe.” I can’t wait to hear Alice’s first bad word, and will smile (or scream) knowing exactly where she learned it… Love, Meghan
For Mark Birthday I figured I’d give the writing thing a try. It’s not easy.
If you aren’t a Pearl Jam fan this is really Not For You…
Sometimes it feels like those days were Light Years a go, Once upon a time we would never dream of Parting Ways, but Off He Goes to college he’s Leaving Here. I fein Indifference, I just want to scream Why Go? Over the years it feels like we may be Drifting apart, it’s Nothing Man, Just Breathe a Come Back is right around the corner. You see we are Blood in the past and Present Tense, part of the same Strange Tribe and Oceans cannot keep us apart.
So as I walk the Long Road, heading towards that Last Exit. I’ll look in the Rearview Mirror, think of All Those Yesterdays spent with the Man Of The Hour and Smile. I could not think of a Betterman’s Footprints to follow.
Forever your brother In a State of Love and Trust.
P.S Hey Foxymophandlemama That’s me
Dad, where do I begin. I’ve heard all the stories of how you have grown up over the years and how at the beginning you weren’t always ready to be a dad. But for some reason I have no memories of those days. That is because you have clouded those days with amazing memories you made with me and Kiley when you truly realized what it was like to be a dad. When I think of you, I will forever remember the art studio, the sandlot, jumping in puddles, long walks on the beach, and dancing crazy on christmas morning. And if you couldn’t tell all these memories are happy memories. I always feel bad for the people who didn’t get to have a child in a mans body as a dad. You have taught me and Kiley to always be ourselves and that no matter how old you are its never too late to do what you love. I am so incredibly happy that you found something that makes you so happy . I am so proud of you for taking a leap of faith and finding something that has truly changed your life. 20 seconds of courage right! You have shown me what a real man looks like, tears and all. You and mom have shown me that everything is not always perfect however true love always prevails. Thank you for being the same person as me and always putting up with me. Thank you for always debating with me and keeping up on politics and everything feminist, just so you can try and make me see the other point of view ( even though I like to think I always win). I love you so much more than you will ever know. Happy 40th to the guy that will always be a child in a grown man’s body! And always remember Christopher Columbus sailed the ocean blue in “1492” Love always, Meg
Dad, You have been so much more than just a dad to me and you have the biggest heart and somehow always have a way of making my bad days good by saying some stupid joke or bring up some old memory. I can honestly say I can’t imagine where I would be without you. I wouldn’t be the person I am today without you guiding me through this crazy thing called life. From the art studio nights, fake commercials, and long rides talking about life, you have taught me so much about what it’s like to be kind. You are an amazing human and I hope your 40’s are some of the best years yet! I love you more than you will ever know. Love always, Kiley
From the skinny high school kid that told Lance the day we met him that he planned to be around for quite a while to one of the best and most supportive husbands and dads there is. There’s been more than a few ups and downs over the years, but things have always worked out for the best. You have always been a big part of our family and we are so proud of the man you have turned out to be. You always try to bring out the best in people close to you and make them feel special. You always show that your family is the most important thing in your life. Over the past few years you have written some amazing blogs. Your way with words has become a very special talent and it is great to watch you work so hard on something you love so much. Always keep following your dreams! I’m sure Nene is up there guiding you along!! Love, Joan
To the man who can’t change a tire, paint a house, or know which end of a hammer to hold, I see that your talents have led you elsewhere. From making candles, learning to cook, cooking some mean bacon, beginning to grow up and enjoy a glass of wine over an IPA, and now to writing interesting stories, some sappy, some enlightening, but always heartfelt, insightful, a window into your mind and the way you think and see the world. They show how much you love your family and the life it has given you has become very special. Though you may not have planned to have only daughters you have embraced the role of a 4th wheel in a house of estrogen. Be assured that your in-laws have come to realize that the skinny 17 year old boy is here to stay, and we couldn’t be happier. Love, Lance
Mark – You’ve been in my life for over two decades and I have loved each and every phase. Watching you grow from a young, wispy 17yr old high school soccer star into an amazingly strong 40yr old family man with a worldly view and deeper level of thinking many are not capable of has been quite enjoyable.
I must admit, one of my favorite phases in our relationship was when I used to get “magic soda” deliveries to my basement. Those were certainly the glory days!! More recently, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed our times on the couch “shooting the shit” when I visit from California with Alex. I can’t remember what we talk about half the time because my mom is chaotically running around making sure everyone is satisfied, but we always have a good chuckle and find a way to connect about the topic du jour.
But honestly, nothing rivals getting to watch you care for and laugh with my sister and your beautiful children. It gives me an amazing feeling and I hope someday Alex and I can have the perfect family just like you guys!
Happy birthday big guy! Here’s to another great year! Love, Mike
Happy 40th Birthday! What do I write about the guy that always has the right words to say? Over the years you have become my high school sweetheart, my rock, my sounding board, my aggravation, the father to my children, my soul mate. Though all the ups, the downs, the speed bumps, the huge obstacles, the laughter, the tears, the happiness, the hate (yes I have hated you haha), the sleepless nights, crazy schedules, and don’t ever forget to Ssshhhhhh… I am glad to have been by your side. Always follow your dreams and keep this family laughing! I am glad to be part of your tribe. Love always, Amy.