Wednesday, August 29, 2012

On the Lighter Side

Just a few lighter moments in our home lately -
  • Morgan decided to do the laundry this past weekend...on her own, unprompted! umm, yay, me! Then I discover, that she's discovered, if she does the laundry, she usually finds some loose change - so she gets paid for doing the laundry!  Sooo....I might just have to leave a few coins in my pocket, on purpose, to encourage her love of this chore! :) I can be nice like that. 
  • We finally decided to take the girls on a float trip. This Saturday! yay! Well, except for now, Isaac is going to be visiting this Saturday! So, you can thank us for helping to put a dent in this drought, as Isaac drenches us in two days of downpour! I'm so glad for the rain! 
  • We've had a houseguest this past week. And Sarah has fallen in love. He makes her giggle all the time, she serenades him with his own songs, and she hasn't even complained about cleaning up after him! Now all she has to do is convince her dad to get one of her own. I wish you well, Sweetheart! 
Someone is excited about our houseguest for the next week! #guineapig #9yearoldhappiness @shelvis2

Monday, August 27, 2012

Journey to Heaven

Last night my grandma journeyed to Heaven.  This is how I remember my grandma in the morning - in her housecoat - waking up slowly -

RIP Grandma

These pictures were from a trip I took to see them - either in '92 or '93. They lived way down in Corpus Christi, TX and we lived way up in Michigan - so this was only my 2nd or 3rd trip to TX. 

My grandparents. 1993

My grandparents moved to TX when I was only two, so our visits were few and far between over the years. But I always knew my grandma loved me. She thought I was special. All of her grandkids were special to her. 

She didn't live an easy life - I know that I don't know the half of it. But sometime during her life she met Jesus. And she loved Him. And she found peace there at the cross. And today I am so thankful that she is no longer in pain.  She is in a better place with no more tears and no more suffering. I am happy for her, even as I miss her.  She spent the last decade of her life living with Alzheimers. Both my grandmas suffered from Alzheimers at the end of their journeys. It's dark side steals the loved one from us before their physical journey on earth ends. 

My grandma loved to go bowling. And she was good at it. One of my favorite memories is her teaching me the bowling technique with pillows in her living room.  If I close my eyes, I can still go back that day. She also loved to collect cruets. I'm glad I have one of hers (on the left). 

Cruets from grsndma

When Sarah turned one, and I turned 30, we met my grandparents (and aunt and uncle) halfway between TX and MO - here are a couple of photos from then - 

And my Grandma with her five children - this was the last time I saw her. Family Reunion, 2005.

These years of saying goodbye to grandparents who have always been a part of our lives is hard. I will hold onto all the sweet memories in my heart. 

Grandma, I'm glad you are finally at peace. I love you, always. 

Thursday, August 16, 2012

The Next Chapter

Well I was brave, I let Morgan get out of the car and head into the middle school building this morning! I wish I could have carried all her nervous-ness with me and gifted her with confidence as she stepped out of the car this morning. I'm looking forward to hearing all about her day when she gets off the bus at 3 today!

Then I hurried back home and got Sarah out the door for the bus. It's gonna be a crazy schedule this year with two different start times, but I'm sure we'll get into a routine soon enough!

Oh, and we got to start the first day of school with NO running water in the house! Fun times!! :)  Thankfully Mike stayed home this morning to help with all this craziness! And hopefully we will have running water again before the end of today...after they dig up our front yard, that is.

Anyway, here are my 4th and 6th Graders for the 2012-2013 school year (you can click on the picture to see it bigger.)

And at the bus stop this morning...

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Bittersweet Summer's End

BittersweetThroughout the years, I often feel like 'bittersweet' is the prefect word to describe motherhood. Oh the sweetness of these years, of this journey, is a joy I would not trade for anything...and yet in living it, there's always a tad of 'bitterness' knowing that it's temporary/fleeting - that I'm working myself slowly out of a job.  These precious years are numbered, which both inspires me and pains me as I attempt to live these motherhood years so fully. 

I feel the end of summer and the beginning of the school year is wrapped up in this word, bittersweet, so perfectly. The dictonary defines it as both both pleasant and painful or regretful. That is how I feel. Totally.

In so many ways, I could not have asked for a more perfect summer. We travelled, we tried new things, we laughed, we played, we relaxed and we had a great time.  But honestly, the days I cherish the most in my heart, are the simple ordinary days of our summer. Like today. Of them sleeping in, then watching some Wizards of Waverly Place in their pjs. Of them making pancakes for breakfast (and fighting throughout the process). Of us taking Mike lunch at work, then spending the afternoon painting their nails with 'tiger colors' for the first day of school. Of them playing with their friends in the basement, (Super Mario was a summertime favorite this year). Of family dinner around the table. These are the days I cherish and beg my brain to commit to memory so that I can pull them out and wrap up in them at a future date.

Tiger nails

Sarah had her open house tonight. And we already know she has a fabulously, fun teacher this year. You see, we got lucky again, as she was Morgan's teacher two years ago! ! After open house, we finally took the girls to the 'tropical sno' stand that opened this summer in the parking lot of the local grocery store. They'd been asking all summer to go (I think they'd finally given up hope!). It was the perfect conclusion to a beautiful summer.
And thus concludes a perfect summer.
And tomorrow morning...a new chapter unfolds...and as I wrote on facebook earlier this week...Ready or not, the page is turning, as we venture out to middle school this morning to pick up a class schedule. As I reluctantly turn this page, I do so with hope and anticipation that the values we've placed within her will be her strength and her guide in these transition years to come. And I'm definitely covering her in prayer!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Anniversary via Instagram

So, tomorrow Mike and I have been married for 18 years. I'm still crazy about him. And he's still crazy about me. And really, marriage doesn't get much better than that!  Darian & Beau kept the girls for the Mike and I had a quiet relaxing weekend to ourselves! Need I say more?!

We tried three new (to us) resturaunts in town this weekend - Tasia, Nonna's, and Brair's. (LOVED them ALL!) We rarely eat out, except for Wendy's and Pizza, so this was a real treat! :) We also caught a double feature at the drive-in, went for a walk, stumbled upon a car show downtown, and visited Japanese Stroll Gardens. It was definitely a perfectly beautiful weekend celebrating our love.

Here are some pictures via Instagram...

Sweet kids of ours. But I'm still glad I'm not spending this anniversary weekend with them.
A Message from our Sweet Girls on our Chalkboard wall.

Anniv weekend
Relaxing in the Hammock

Happiness in a vase

So glad I said "I do" 18 years ago. #happilyeverafter
And here we are 18 years after "I do"

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Glow-in-the-Dark Balloon Launch

DAY FOUR of vacation was simply about more togetherness, and celebrating Gram's life.  Just before dark we all loaded up the pontoon boats and headed out to the lake.  After darkness set in, we passed out the glow-in-the-dark balloons, sang "This Little Light of Mine" (because Gram lived a generous life and let her light shine) and then released the balloons into the night sky - dozens of balloons illuminating the sky over the lake. It was magical. Breathtaking. A tear in my eye. "Love you, Gram. and I miss you" whispered up. A life lived well. A life who touched countless others. A generous soul. Oh, if I'm blessed to live 94 years, I hope I  live them as fully as she did! I'm inspired to try!

In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:16