Blogtember Day 1: Where I come from...

Thursday, September 5, 2013

I'd just like to preface these posts by saying I'm not sure where the tornado that has been my life over the last few days came from but I won't let it stop me from completing this challenge!

I had to go to bed pretty early on Tuesday night because I had to be into work before 6:00AM yesterday morning. I wasn't too upset about it until I wasn't able to leave at 2:00 like I had planned and instead didn't get off until 6:30PM. I'm not a fan of 12 hour days...
The sad thing is that I actually had the first couple of posts already written! All I had to do was push the publish button but I literally did not get a second to do so until now.
So despite all of the craziness, I do plan to continue with Blogtember and I want to thank you for bearing with me!

Challenge: Describe where or what you come from. The people, the places, and/or the factors that make up who you are.
I come from a line of highly driven people.
People who took what they had and made it work for them. None of them started out with much at all but each and every one of them made something of themselves and learned quite a few lessons along the way.
My grandparents on both sides were born of the generation of do-ers.
The kind of people who worked for something. People who built their lives with their own two hands and didn’t count anyone else to support them. If they didn’t know how to do something, they learned or taught themselves.  They had big goals and dreams and they were taught that if they worked hard enough, they could achieve anything. They were poor growing up but it didn’t stop them from getting what they wanted. Even though times were tough, they knew that making excuses would only keep them right where they were.
My grandfather always tells the story about when he first moved to Maryland from Chicago many years ago. Fresh out of the Navy with a wife and two small children in tow, he ventured out to the East Coast to find a home for his family after landing a new job in Linthicum. After a long search, the only house that he could find was a bit small and more than he could afford. Since he had not started his job yet, he had no money for all of the up-front costs. He either had to make this house work or his family would be out on the streets. Realizing he had no choice, he looked the selling agent in the eye and said, “So here’s what we’re gonna do…” and convinced the man to give him an interest free loan covering all of their closing costs that he would then pay back when he could afford it. I’m not sure how it happened but the man agreed and they got the house.
Of course, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. My parents grew up to be just as determined and driven as their parents and along the way, they too picked up a nugget or two of wisdom.
When my parents first got married, times were very tough financially. There was a point when my dad would take just enough change in his pocket to buy soup for lunch and nothing else. Day in day out they stuck to their budget, keeping their eyes focused on the brighter future ahead. Despite their tight circumstances, they built a system that helped them to save, gradually climb the ladder, and eventually flourish. Now, you would never know that they once struggled, but through their hard work and discipline, they made a beautiful life for themselves and for me.
All my life I’ve heard stories about how my family has taken the hand they had been dealt and turned it into something great. No setback or bump in the road could keep them from getting where they wanted to go.
I would like to think that I inherited a little bit of that work ethic and passion for life. I can only hope that I, too, will live a life that reflects all that they worked to achieve.


  1. I LOVE THIS! I adore the pictures so much! I haven't a doubt in my mind that there will be a little Powell someday writing something equally as loving.

    1. Haha my parents look like babies! And hopefully you're right about the future little ones! :)

  2. Laura, you do justice in everything you say. I loved reading about your trip to Belgium.