Squicciarini family, Thoughts

stephanie curcio squicciarini

March 1, almost a year ago. The scream of horror I couldn’t repress is fresh in my mind, and I can still feel the cold chill that swept past me when I heard the news. But WHY was the question, probably will always be the question. We’ve talked it through, dabbled in conspiracy theories, and resigned ourselves to never knowing what prompted a brilliant, talented woman to abruptly take her own life.

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Personal, Squicciarini family, Thoughts

famiglia

I come from a large and wonderful family. Just as I firmly believe that God placed me in the best country on earth, I have an unswerving conviction that I am part of the greatest family. My parents are my role models. My sisters are my closest friends. We love and care for each other in a way that is rare in the world today. We are bright lights in a very dark place. 

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Baby, Problems, Squicciarini family, Thoughts

mourning

tiny Spurlock baby,

We don’t get to meet you in this world after all, sweet baby. Oh, we wanted to. But our God planned things differently this time. He gave you to your mommy and daddy for just a short time, and then He took you back. We cannot argue with the One who creates and sustains our lives.

Were you a “potential life?” Did you have a soul? Will we meet you in the world to come? Where are you now? Are you playing with other unborn children in the garden of Eden?

I don’t know. All I know is that for the last six weeks, you have been the most thrilling secret, the most hoped-for event in our lives.

Little one, I wanted you to know how brave your mommy was. She carried you in her tummy, and she prayed for you every day, and she loved you so much. She saw the warning signs, and she prayed even more. And last Friday, she labored for hours, all alone, hurting so badly. I think she wanted to say goodbye to you by herself. The days she had with you were so precious that she wouldn’t give them up, even if she could. She is strong and beautiful, a mother you should be proud to have. May she be a mother to many children.

They say parting is such sweet sorrow. I feel the sorrow of your absence, but I also see the sweetness of your parents’ faith. It amazes me. They are righteous and devout, an example to us. We support them and encourage them and care for them, but most of all, we mourn with them right now. One day, we will rejoice with them. For everything there is a season.

hugs and kisses,

Aunt Morgan

=)

Personal, Squicciarini family, Thoughts

like mother like daughter

In honor of my mother’s birthday this week, I’ve compiled a list of ten ways I have become a small version of her.

  1. My favorite place to store things is the trash can.
  2. I can’t walk into the kitchen without picking up the sponge.
  3. I tell Sophia, “You have to make your own fun.”
  4. My house is filled with soft neutrals.
  5. I drive a Honda Odyssey.*
  6. Napping has become impossible, since the minute I lay down a giant to-do list pops into my head and the only option is to get up and get back to work.
  7. I have become very picky about the quality of food I eat.
  8. My toddler is in training to take over many of the household chores. Like, next year.
  9. Boo-boos are met with “Is it bleeding? No? You’re fine.”
  10. I now shop at Talbots and other stores that are friendly to women who are Not Teenagers Anymore.

=)

*I used to poke fun at my mother’s driving. She’s known for going a few miles below the speed limit, and never swerving from the right lane even if she ends up behind an old pickup going 35. I now find myself doing the same thing. How could I not?? For one thing, I didn’t take into account that driving a minivan is a whole lot different than zipping around in a Beetle. And the children’s safety is in my hands! So I now also stick to the right lane and let the traffic gallop by.

Baby, Bartos family, Squicciarini family

dedication

In Your loving arms we lay this wordless one so new…
The incarnation of our love we dedicate to You.
-Michael Card

Last month we had a dedication service for Zoe with our community, at my parents’ house. I wanted to mention it on here so I could record what we said about Zoe’s name. We have given both of our girls a short explanation of what their name means and why we chose it.

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Engagement, Greg & Morgan, Squicciarini family, Thoughts, Wedding

ode to Isaac + Christine

{Background on Christine… Out of four sisters, Christine is “the pretty one,” the one most likely to be a model – vibrant, expressive, and sophisticated. She’s a bubbly party girl, a bon vivant, a talented artist, a creative genius, a hilarious comedienne, and a wealth of information. She has excellent taste, displayed in her fashionable accessories, enviable shoe collection, and bright yellow MINI Cooper. You’ll find that beneath her blonde hair and sweet smile is a sharp sense of humor, a bundle of common sense, and a generous spirit.}

Last Sunday, Greg and I attended a lovely engagement party for Christine and Isaac, hosted by Bobby and Jodi Pittenger. One of the highlights of the occasion, for me, was meeting many of Isaac’s relatives and friends for the first time! Until now, I’ve only known his mother, Gloria.

{Background on Gloria… G-d brought her into our lives in an unusual way! Years ago, when I was working for Quo Vadis, I stepped outside while visiting a client site in Matthews and struck up a conversation with a sweet lady walking by who turned out to work next door. After introductions, as we chatted, I noticed that her necklace looked like it was made of Hebrew letters strung together. I commented on it, and found that we practiced the same faith! In the end, I invited her for Erev Shabbat dinner with my family, and that was the start of our friendship with Gloria Alexander. How amazing that her son is now marrying my sister! Only our G-d could have arranged such a “coincidental” meeting.}

Besides being a splendid time with friends and family, the event on Sunday gave me a chance to reflect on Isaac and Christine. They are absolutely right for each other, from appearances {picture-perfect} to personalities {suitably complimentary}.

{Brief DISC analysis… while Isaac and Christine share a fun-loving sanguine quality, he is predominately a choleric, bringing out her natural phlegmatic side. It’s a good mix – we haven’t observed a single disagreement so far!}

Their relationship reminds me of Eric & Leslie Ludy’s book When G-d Writes Your Love Story. Isaac and Christine have a beautiful story of love and redemption… my dad referenced this in his comments at the party Sunday night. The changes we have seen in Isaac over the past two years testify to how complete a transformation takes place when a man surrenders his life to the will of Almighty G-d. He and Christine wrote a tennaim document {a traditional “contract” stating terms and conditions of the wedding} which they signed at the engagement party, and as Isaac read it to everyone present, we were so proud of him for having the courage to make such a public statement of his faith – and proud of both of them for growing together in their observance and practice.

Hearing Isaac announce his intention to marry Christine under the chuppah next May was a joyful moment for Greg and I! We eagerly anticipate the culmination of their courtship and the start of a new life for this beautiful couple.

Isaac and Christine, we praise G-d for bringing you together! May the Holy One lead you along the path of righteousness as you prepare for marriage. We love you!

=)

Baby, Greg & Morgan, Married Life, Squicciarini family

november

month at a glance…

  • hosted Mr. & Mrs. Joshua Spurlock, along with my parents, for a very elegant dinner here {used my “family” china, the set of Haviland Blue Garland inherited from my great-grandmother}… thrilled to have a chance to honor the new couple in our home!! And SO proud of my husband for opting to learn the Sheva Berachot by heart and sing them for Josh & Julianna! {Isn’t he amazing?!} It was a very special time for us… kind of like “paying forward” the memorable hospitality we were shown during our own wedding week last year. {My goodness, was it only last year?? We are starting to feel like old married people!} One of my favorite parts was dessert, a surprisingly scrumptious gluten-free buckwheat pumpkin pie topped with parve pumpkin flavored soy vanilla ice cream {yum!}… another was when Joshua carried in a tree to give my parents… a brilliant and noteworthy gift for those horticultural enthusiasts.
  • took the newlyweds to the airport so they could catch a plane to Paris!
  • stood in line with Greg & the berry for 2 hours to vote early… worth every minute just to hear one of the librarians say: “We’ve seen a lot of babies this week, but I must say yours is the cutest one I’ve seen yet.” {grin!}
  • had a Shabbat picnic at the newly renovated Stallings Park… beautiful weather! Tried to put Sophia in one of the baby swings but she objected loudly.
  • painted a little nightstand for Sophia to match her dresser {a piece of furniture leftover from Mary’s move into Julianna’s old room at The Residence}
  • tried this recipe for gluten-free kung pao chicken and loved it!
  • attended a 13th birthday party for my cousin Jonathan Stelzl {kind of a “becoming a man” event}, an Italian potluck down in Waxhaw complete with speeches by the articulate Stelzl children, blessings, and singing
  • ventured down to VW for some maintenance… the berry waited very patiently with me for, yes, an hour. To get a new headlight put in. And that was with an appointment. {sigh}
  • celebrated Rosh Chodesh Kislev at The Roost {the Spurlock II’s} with a cozy little crowd + fancy French-sounding beverages
  • pulled out my yarn stash and started knitting! Yay for cold weather!
  • 2 dates with Christine – first a consignment store run in downtown Matthews with tea at Dilworth, then a leisurely stroll around Southpark
  • moved the berry up to 3 meals a day… typically oatmeal or mashed banana for breakfast; applesauce, hummus, or yogurt at lunch; and a veggie or protein for dinner {still nursing her about 4x/day}
  • had a “men’s” Erev Shabbat here, one of our largest meals around the table {Greg, Peter, Brock Wright, Caleb Eades, and Colby Foster, plus Mary [my assistant chef], Sophia, and I}… a great evening! Thankfully there was enough food!
  • double dated with the Spurlock II’s at Dean & Deluca… we sat around a hightop table sharing hot spinach artichoke dip comparing notes on married life – loved it!
  • spent a very very quiet weekend laying low in our home, getting extra rest and recuperating from a cold that attacked our family {the berry’s first one… a pitifully stuffy nose and tiny cough}
  • yet to come: Thanksgiving!

=)