Tag Archives: Joe

Sorry Joe But…”You Can’t Always Get What You Want”

As the 6th anniversary of Joe’s move to heaven approaches, I find myself thinking about the things he wanted me to do if I outlived him.

What Joe Wanted

A life of pain and agony is not what Joe wanted for me, as we had this discussion many times. He wanted me to move forward with life by:

  • Excelling in my career at the bank.
  • Dating again.
  • Marrying again.

What He Got

Here’s how each one of his wishes turned out, in addition to some things he never expected.

  • Excelling in my career at the bank – I am glad he was positive about me being having a successful career at the bank. However, the joke was on him as I was laid off in 2009.
  • Dating again – Once again the joke is on him as men my age suffer from the “George Clooney” syndrome and only want 25 – 35 yr old ladies on their arm. Plus I choose to meet men the old fashioned way – in person. That opportunity has not presented itself, at least no yet. While I might be forward thinking in some area’s of life (blogging), meeting someone online gives me the creeps. Although it would make an interesting blog series.   😉
  • Marrying again (see Dating).
  • Learning to blog – He taught me about computers but never about blogging or website design.
  • Resume writing – Joe was my resume writer so when I got laid off I was upset at him. How dare he leave me with to do this on my own. However, I learned how to do it and it really is not so bad, unlike writing cover letters.
  • Job Search – He would be dazed and confused at what all is involved in finding a job now. I am sure he is impressed with how I’ve handled it, especially the networking.

So he never got what he wanted but hopefully he is glad at some of the things that happened since his move to heaven.

Remember Joe,

You can’t always get what you want.

The Rolling Stones



Michele’s Being Considered For A KSU Alumni Award

Yesterday I receive a letter from Kent State University’s Alumni Association congratulating me on being nominated for the Distinguished Citizen Alumni Award. Now in all fairness, I nominated myself. The alumni association sent out an email stating that one could nominate themselves – so I did.

Here is more about the award.

The Distinguished Citizen Award honors alumni for their extraordinary service to the public in nonprofit organization or outstanding community service. This award recognizes those individuals who have unselfishly and generously contributed their time and talents for the enrichment of others and the betterment of their community.

The work I did that resulted in the alumni awards committee accepting and considering my nomination – all the work I do on this blog and co-facilitating the GriefShare support group. I also mentioned my work with Golden Retrievers In Need (G.R.I.N.).

I will know in May whether or not I will receive the Distinguished Citizen Alumni Award to be presented on October 17, the day before Homecoming.

Receiving this award will be wonderful. The publicity will help spread the word about JoyReturns and increase the chance of helping other widows through their grief journey. It would also educate family and friends about the good, bad, ugly and joyous adventures their loved one could face now that she is a widow.

How God Works

This is how God works.  He made sure some good came from Joe’s passing. It was one morning before I opened my eyes that I heard the words “Widow’s Website” in my head. I am not a morning person and there is no way I could form an idea like “Widow’s Website” before getting out of bed. Those words were placed in my brain by God.

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Romans 8:28

Joyous But Bittersweet

This is an example of a joyous but bittersweet moment one faces periodically after a loved one’s passing. It is a joy to be considered for this award but this nomination would not have happened without JoyReturns, which would not have happened without Joe moving to heaven.

Thank You

Thank you to my family and friends for your support during the past 3 years. When I say friends, I also mean my readers and fellow bloggers, for I consider you my friends even though we have never met in person.

Thank you to God for putting the idea in my head and showing me there is a use for my conversational writing style. You would not want a scientist writing a grief support blog as his/her style would be too formal and technical.

Thank you to Valerie, a fellow widow who also had to deal with grief and unemployment.  Both her joy and a job have returned.  I am honored you chose JoyReturns to help you during your journey.

Thank you to the alumni awards committee for considering me for the Distinguished Citizen Alumni Award.

Stay Tuned

I will let you know in May whether I will be receiving this award or if it goes to another distinguished alumni.


40 + 2 Days of Joy

Well it was 60 or 70+ degrees this weekend.  Not really sure because the indoor/outdoor thermometer is busted.  It measures the temp inside but not outside.

So I did some yard work yesterday, did some dusting and sweeping today, aired out the house and put the Christmas decorations up.


Yes, I put up the manger set Joe’s friend and former boss made for Joe’s mother.  It has not been up since 2006 or 2007.  Don’t remember if I put it up for our last Christmas.  The set has become even more special because Joe’s friend passed away in June 2010.  So if something breaks no call to Beth for a replacement figurine.

This will be the last Christmas it is up at my house.

Next year it will go to Joe’s nieces and nephew.  That is where it belongs and they can rotate it between their houses from year to year.


Now the reason, this got put up is I am finally starting on this year’s Christmas series.  I better bust my butt and get it put to bed since it is right around the corner.  The only thing I know about the series is on weekends there will be my favorite Christmas songs, instead of recipes like last year.  The series is survival tips and thoughts about how a first year widow can survive the holiday season, but the tips are general enough that they can be applied to anyone stressed out from all the season’s chaos.

The series will run from Thanksgiving Eve through New Year’s Day is called 40 + 2 Days of Joy (last year’s was 40 Days of Joy).

So I’d better quit writing this and get to work on the series, launch date is right around the corner.

Have a blessed week everyone.

“Manger Set”


“Joy to the World, the Lord has come.”
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