m wood pen

illustrator of books, cocktails, travel + more

My outrageously hilarious, loving, warm, zany, smart, gorgeous, brave, storytelling, hyperbole-infused, expert-on-all-things-Turkey, o-so-kind, archaeologist-martini-drinking mom is 86 today!

She’s slayed devastating loss, poverty, dire circumstances, cancer, two brain tumors and a hatred of math with an unflinching sense of humor, resolve, and determination.

Deftly juggling a childhood in the warm embrace of her loving south side of Chicago family (whose four daughters would share one bicycle for their Christmas present), with a shy wave to the Duke of Windsor & his Wallis, & tennis lessons from famed athlete Alice Marble on the estate of her wealthy, but cold, relatives on the East Coast (where she was sent as companion to a disinterested cousin), to scrambling beyond Gift Court salesgirl at Marshall Fields to advertising agency aficionado, marriage, motherhood and life in the country, and then, only then, her first, long-awaited steps into the hallowed halls of college.

Eventually earning a Masters Degree in Archaeology, she jetted off leaving my sweet dad at home for 8 week stretches nourishing himself with Soup Starter, to points unknown with an esteemed team to dig and swill martinis in Eastern Turkey, always returning home with a smile and a sackful of kilims for us all.

Embracing her 16 grandchildren (and all that she meets) with her unflinching love, exuberance, encouragement, and ridiculously cool mentality, the gal has earned her birthday cake. And then some.

What a wonderful life indeed to be in her psychic circle: if you don’t know her well all I can say is she’s the best anyone can hope for in a mentor, mom, friend, road trip buddy, happy hour companion, classic movie buff, book club pal, junking compadre, foodie, adventure partner & friend.

Happy Birthday, Andree Robitaille Wood ❤️

ARW in her own words, via poetry & zany reminiscences, can be found at http://andreerobitaillewood.com

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