Monday, July 20, 2015

Bound Together

Saturday, we made a whirlwind trip to Alabama--there and back.  My dad's last living brother passed away earlier in the week from a short battle with cancer.   


You see, my dad had 2 brothers and both of them had kids that were the same ages as my brothers and I.  At one point, I think my mom and 2 of my aunts were pregnant at the same time.  There was a baby boom.  Because of that baby boom, I had lots of cousins to play with.  My grandparents had 18 grandchildren.  There were only 5 of us girls.  My uncle James' girls and I were like the three amigos in the midst of all those boys.  I remember running around our grandparent's yard playing on Sunday afternoons.  That's when all the kids would congregate after church.  My Nanny and Papa would be in the kitchen cooking up dozens of dishes to feed us all.  I'm sure not everything was perfect, but those are fond memories for me.

My extended family doesn't see each other very much and we say half-jokingly that we only see each other at funerals.  But we will always be family.  Bound together by blood and shared memories.

It's weird being with people that remember when you were born.  People that shared your same growing up experiences.  That remember your good and try to forget your bad.  Ones that look for you and wonder where you are if you don't make it back.

I don't go to funerals for the dead.  I go to show my love and support for the living.  The sweet aunt that was always so quiet and loving.  Those two little girls that were my partners in crime back in the day.  Their brother that was too little to really remember me now.  I go to express that even though I live so far away and have a life separate from here, I'm never really separated from the loss we collectively share.  The loss of our grandparents, my dad, his brothers, two cousins and my brother.  Bound together by loss.

 










Family....

Monday, July 13, 2015

Blessed....


Life has been insane!  Sickness, a trail derailment, first week of school, my birthday, my dad's brother being diagnosed with cancer and moved to hospice in a week's time and JP working all kinds of crazy hours.  

Here are snippets from the past week or so:

The cucumbers are doing awesome...crazy awesome!  I'm planning on making pickle relish today and putting cucumbers in every dish we eat.  (This is after I gave some away to three different people!)



Our annual first day of school treat!



We've been in school for a week and Michael is settling somewhat nicely into our school routine.  He has a checklist every day of tasks to complete.  For example, play a game, Easy Peasy Math 1, build with legos, Read for 30 minutes, etc.  It helps keep him on track especially if I'm working with Tera and Daniel.  We have things on the list we do together and things he can do on his own.  It worked really well for the first week.  We'll see if we need to tweak it as we go along.  

Tera is enjoying her high school course work and has settled into her daily schedule very quickly.  Daniel is studying the brain for science and loving every minute of it!  


Friday was my birthday and Michael really wanted me to wear a sombrero.  So, there ya go!




My husband treated me like a queen and my kids outdid themselves once more with the Acme Super Mommy Survival Kit

Complete with:

Acme Stress Reliever Handbook
The Mask of Optimism
The Bracelet of Power
The Ultimate Chill Pills for Cool-Headedness
The List Takers of doom
The fresher-upper of Conquerors
 


Even with all the craziness of schedules, sickness and literal train wrecks, we are blessed this day and every day! 

Monday, July 6, 2015

First Day of School 2015-2016




2015
















 What I want to be when I grow up:











2014


 I've been taking this same picture since Daniel was in kindergarten.
I can't believe how these kids have grown.  





2013






2012








                            








    2011










2010




2009


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 2007


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