Friendship Friday – Happy Birthday Leslie


Today is Friendship Friday, and in honor of my niece Leslie’s 25th birthday, she is the person that I am writing about today! In my sister’s clan, I have honored Leslie’s Dad Jim, Mom Robin, and sister Stephanie, and now it’s Leslie’s turn! Don’t worry Brett, I’ll get to you too!

Leslie is the middle child of my brother-in-law Jim and his wife (my sister) Robin.  That has it’s share of benefits and pitfalls, but all in all, I think Leslie has been a great older sister to her baby sister Stephanie, and she’s tough enough to take (and dish out, too!) the nonsense that her big brother Brett tries to dish out (or used to in days gone by).

Leslie is, in many ways, similar to me in that it took me a while to really settle down and figure out what I wanted to do with my life.  It really wasn’t until I got the job down here in North Carolina that I felt like my career was going in a positive direction!

Leslie has always had an outdoor flair about her, and a love of animals that continues on to this day.  She has had cats, dogs, fish, horses, and boyfriends to fall under the category of “animals” (just kidding Leslie about the boyfriends!) and her compassion towards them really knows no bounds.

As part of her post high school years, Leslie actually did join the U.S. Army to be an MP, and made it through basic training, but she had an injury that she was unable to overcome, and as a result she has had a medical discharge.  However, that hasn’t stopped her, and she is working on getting a degree at school in some sort of law enforcement avenue — perhaps criminology or something along those lines?  I’m not 100% certain of that.  Her goal is to become a police officer, and while that can be a dangerous line of work, I take great pride in knowing that part of Leslie’s makeup is to help those that are less fortunate

Image courtesy and ©Joe Ellis

Image courtesy and ©Joe Ellis

During her teenage years, Leslie was fortunate to be able to own and take care of a horse.  This picture was from when Leslie was 15, and I remember all of the time she would spend with her horse taking care of it and making sure it was well looked after.  I expect that nurturing spirit is something she gets from both her Mom and Dad, and it is something that will serve her well later on as she settles down and gets married.

Throughout all of the years I’ve seen Jim and Robin’s family develop and grow up, the one thing that I’m left with is that, beyond the brother-sister-sister drama that kids like to heap on one another, there is a bond among all of them that will stand the test of time.  When Stephanie was married last November, who was there wishing them well with tears in her eyes and in her voice — Leslie.  And who was there crying like a baby when his baby sister was married — Brett.  The bravado and all of that gets in the way sometimes, but at the end, what it comes down to is this: Robin and Jim are blessed beyond measure — and if they ever doubt that, all they need to do look at their kids, grown ups now but still babies to them, and they can rest knowing that they have done their job, and done it well.

As you all know by now, I learned of Friendship Friday from my great friend Heidi from Heidi’s Head!  Please click on the image below and see who she is honoring today, and thanks for stopping by!