joolee's forty

forty days. forty stories.

my neice julie

by Carolyn Gregg

The Gregg Family, early 1980s (yep, that's Julie, front row second from right with the short shorts and fabulous frames!).

I first met Julie 27 years ago when I began dating her Uncle Gary.  I have watched her chase her dreams and follow her heart through high school, college, the Peace Corp, Korea, Alaska, Antarctica, etc..  She has had more adventures than I could ever imagine.  Most people reading this web site know “Joolee” the fearless adventure seeking world traveler who takes on icebergs, volcanoes, raging rivers, sky high mountain ranges and hippos.  I know Julie the family member. I know Julie the daughter, the granddaughter, the cousin, the niece, the sister and the aunt.

Family Christmas

Julie’s grandparents, Bill and Martha, had a map of the world hanging in their home.  Every time Julie went to another country they added another pin.  Julies’ grandmother collected Owls.  Julie would send her Owls from the countries she visited around the world. The map points and owls kept multiplying. When friends would see Bill and Martha they would always ask, “What’s Julie doing now ?”.   When I visited I would ask the same and Martha would dig out the latest letter and tell me about the latest phone call.  They were so very proud of you.

Julie with grandparents Bill and Martha Gregg

More important than the letters, phone calls and keepsakes was the time Julie always made for her grandparents.  Julie was there for them. Even with all of the health problems that come with “old age”, Julie could always make them smile.

So on behalf of your grandparents and myself I would like to say “Thanks for the Memories”.  Memories of Christmas dinners at your grandmas kitchen table and summer picnics in the backyard.  Memories of your grandfather with his video recorder on the tripod, recording Thanksgiving dinner at the farm.  Memories of birthdays and weddings, anniversaries, graduations and family reunions.  Memories of  births and deaths. Memories of all the things that make a family, well…a family.  Thank you Julie.

Julie makes everyone she meets feel loved and special.  This is because she is more special and much more loved than she will ever know.

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5 comments on “my neice julie

  1. joolee
    March 14, 2012

    Gee whiz, Carolyn…well, I feel pretty loved right now! Thank you so much…for writing this story, for being so good to Grandma and Pap yourself, and for making it so they could participate in this thing. We got really lucky when YOU joined the family…I remember the first time Gary was bringing you to our house for a meal, and it was exciting and novel that this new person would be joining us, and I imagined what you might be like before you arrived. When it was all over and you guys were gone, I distinctly remember thinking you were nothing like I’d imagined…you were way cooler than anything I’d dreamed up! Thanks for starting my day like this, Carolyn (that photo of Grandma (the one w/just me and Pap) is beautiful)!

    • Jennie / Mom
      March 14, 2012

      Carolyn, a terrific job, well appreciated!

    • Jeanette
      March 14, 2012

      Carolyn! Beautifully done…you brought tears to my eyes and great memories to the day. Thank you so much. Jeanette : )

    • Jill Knepp
      March 14, 2012

      My Niece in law???
      Hi Julie, this is Carolyn’s sister Jill. Carolyn was so excited about the 40 birthday wishes and all the stories! I know you more as Carolyn does and wanted to tell you what a great family you have. Your Grandparents Bill and Martha were a national treasure. You get to meet folks of their caliber once in a lifetime, if you are lucky.
      Having 2 sisters, it was great to see you and Janette together. Like us we are so different and yet so much alike. Always there for each other.
      We are proud of all of your family, Carolyn got a great family when marrying Gary.
      Happy Birthday, Jill Knepp (Carolyn’s Much younger sister)

      • joolee
        March 15, 2012

        Jill, hello! What an honor to be your niece-in-law!!! Thanks for what you said about Grandma and Pap…I absolutely agree, and I’m beyond flattered to hear that you see Jeanette and I the way you see yourself with Carolyn and Holly, b/c I’ve always admired the relationship you three have! Thanks for your comments, and I hope that this spring is treating you well! Love from Jeanette’s just-a-little-bit younger sister

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