Karen Quinn

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Archive for January, 2011

How Does a World Cruise Sound to You?

Friday, January 7th, 2011

Dear Friends,

I don’t know who your hero is, but mine is my mom, Shari Nedler.  I believe I have the most beautiful, smart, kind, loving, caring mother in the whole world.  Mom is the person who really cares (and wants a full daily-report) about how my day went.  When I have a problem, she’s the first person I go to for advice.  And the two of us laugh out loud all the time, usually at our own foibles.  I wanted to invite you to have some fun and get to know my mother a little better as she travels around the world.

Read on for details!

When I was a kid, I had the only working mother among all my friends.  I hated that and vowed never to be a working mother, but instead to adopt 20+ disabled children and bring them up on my farm.  [at 14, I even wrote a letter to my future-self begging her to reconsider whatever I was doing and start adopting children, lest I changed my mind, which I did, but that's another story.] Mom got her PhD in Early Childhood Education and was the first female full professor of at the University of Colorado.  She published two books that were used for many years as textbooks in universities across the country.  Later she went on to found a jewelry store with my father and brother, working there until she retired at 79.

Mom was married to my father twice.  They were divorced when I was a teenager in a full fledge, ugly, future therapy-provoking break up that took its toll on the family.  But a few years later, they realized they were soul mates and remarried.  Their second marriage was the happiest years of their lives for both of them.  Sadly, my father died a little over 10 years ago.

Times were hard after Dad passed on.  Mom got cancer and went through painful treatments.  When that was behind her, the two of us went to Canyon Ranch Spa and I still couldn’t keep up with her on our hikes.  We go there every year now and even though Mom is in her 80′s (a young 80!) and a cancer survivor, I can’t do as much as she does — hikes, exercise classes, gyro-tonics, Pilates, workouts — the woman’s a human exercise machine!

Not long after Dad’s death, Mom met Marvin, a recent widower who belonged to the same Temple she did.  For ten years, she and Marvin dated, enjoying theater, concerts, playing bridge, and traveling.  They moved to the same building, but didn’t live together.  Marvin would knock at her door every night around 6.  She’d make dinner or they’d go out.  Last year, she and Marvin planned the trip of a lifetime – a cruise around the world on the Crystal Serenity, a luxury mid-sized ship.  On their first part of the cruise, Marvin got sick and they had to come home.  He died not long after.  We all miss him terribly and it has been an especially difficult adjustment for Mom.

Mom wasn’t sure if she would ever travel again, especially by herself. She worried that the memories of being on the ship with Marvin (and my dad before him) would make the experience too difficult.  However, with some time and a lot of thought, she decided to get back on the ship and signed up to take the 2011 world cruise that leaves January 16.  This time, she is going by herself, although my brother, one of her closest friends, and me, will join her for 3 of the 6 segments.

What I admire most about my mother is that she is always pushing herself to learn new things.  She doesn’t tweet, but she’s on Facebook.  Last fall, she got one of those super skinny Macs and she’s been taking lessons at the Apple store every week, learning how to blog and post her pictures.  She’s planning to blog about her cruise every step of the way.  Mom has made a list of her friends and they’ll all get notices of her new posts so they can follow her on her trip.

Would you (or your mom or dad) like to read Mom’s posts as she travels to destinations such as Australia, Indonesia, Bali, China, India, Africa and more?  If so, send your email address to Karenquinn1@aol.com and I’ll make sure you’re notified whenever she posts!  I have loved meeting new people through my own blog posts and I think my mother would enjoy that as well.  My goal is to create a list of 50 or so people who would genuinely like to read about her adventures traveling the world.  It’ll be a fun diversion for all of us from everyday life.  Plus, Mom has always been an inspiration to me.  Maybe she’ll inspire you to step out of your comfort zone (as she is doing) and set sail on your own new adventures as well!

All My Best,

Karen