As the name of my blog indicates, I spend a lot of time thinking about home. Of course, my Heavenly Home is the one that is eternal, so that’s where I need to lay up my treasures, and that’s the one I’m striving for. But in the meantime, I have been given this tiny piece of the here-and-now—this home on the edge of town, this family, this neighborhood—in which to serve Him. And, though this is in the earthly realm, I want the things that happen here to be investments in the Heavenly realm.

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

"I Hate James"

Bekah and Ron are on a streak of watching old episodes of The Rockford Files. On evenings that both are free, they will watch one or two shows, and they are almost through the first season. (There are six!) 

One night as they sat down to watch, Bekah said, "I hate James." 

"You hate James?!," I questioned, assuming that she was speaking of James Garner. I was wondering why she was so enamored with The Rockford Files if she "hated" James! 

But Bekah looked at me as if I had two heads.

"I said 'I hate change.'"

Me: Ohhhhh. 🤦🏻‍♀️😂

And then: 😭

Because the most recent change that is just around the bend for our family is that Ryan and Sarah are moving. 

We have known for several weeks, but I have told very few people because the first thing most people say when they find out where they are moving is "It's not that far." And it really isn't. It's not Oklahoma or California. It's a mere three hours away, and believe me when I say that I am very grateful for that!

But, it changes so much. 

No more weekly piano lessons (where Bekah teaches and I hang out and see the bedtime routines and drink coffee and talk and laugh). 

We won't see the two babies as frequently, and we all know how quickly babies grow and change.

The older girls won't be in our book club. 

What about birthday coffee/dessert/gift evenings . . . times eight?

How about summer beach days? 

It won't be as simple to share chores (pick up something at Lowe's, cut wood, help move a piece of furniture, babysit, dog/cat sit, rake leaves at Gammy and Gampy's house). 

Larger family gatherings (seasonal birthday celebrations, holidays) will be harder to coordinate. 

Our available travel days (with Ron still working) will now be divided among two families and two places. 

When Kati and family come to Maryland to visit, Ryan and family will not be here. 

And when both families visit us (as we hope for Thanksgiving this year), where will we put everybody?! 

Soooo . . . 

Yes, I know that three hours is not that far.

Yes, I know that this change is not all about ME.

Yes, I am happy for Ryan and family because they are happy about their new adventure.

But, also yes, I reserve the right to grieve this change while my internal Mama-GPS "recalculates."

Because I will miss them terribly! 

And, like Bekah . . . 

I hate James! *

What about you? Do you "hate James" or do you roll with the punches? 

"I hate James" will probably be a permanent idiom in our family vocabulary.)

Wednesday, June 15, 2022

More Grand Moments

In my last post (which are few and far between these days), I shared a sampler of photos from our visit with Kati in which grandbabies played the starring roles! 

Since our trip, the local grands have played the starring roles, as we've had the opportunity to spend some extra time with many of them. 

This post will be a sampler of those moments.

~  *  ~  *  ~  *  ~

Kristin's youngest children, Macie and Judah, stayed overnight with us while the rest of their family went out of town to watch Maddie and Owen perform with their choir. 

At church. (One of the reasons Macie did not want to go to the choir performance
was because she did not want to miss her Sunday School class!)

We got out the old Fisher Price medical kit that their mom and Uncle Ryan had played with when they were very small. Many of the other grands had played with it, but I don't think it has been out since we moved here six years ago, so it was new to Macie and Judah. 

It was déjà vu for Ron and me because it was only yesterday (or nearly forty years ago) that little Kristin gave Ron a check-up every. single. Sunday. after church while I prepared our afternoon meal. 

Papa is "crying" as Dr. Judah gives him a shot. The doc looks pretty happy, doesn't he?

Later in the afternoon, Ryan and Sarah came for a visit, bringing along a tub of homemade coffee ice cream!






~  *  ~  *  ~  *  ~

Then, there was the annual Grand Summer Sleepover! 

Back row: Eve, Nora, Owen, Maddie
Front row: Peter, Paul, Macie, Ben, and Alaine

~  *  ~  *  ~  *  ~

We attended the Spring Concert for the Maddie and Owen's choir. It was an evening of beautiful music! 

~  *  ~  *  ~  *  ~

Alaine, Macie, and Judah spent a few days with us while their parents and older siblings took a vacation. The younger ones had had their own vacation earlier in the spring, but isn't a visit at Gran and Papa's its own kind of vacation? We tried to make it so with fun and games and special treats! 

~  *  ~  *  ~  *  ~

Earlier this week, we all met at the beach for some fun in the sun! 

Do you see Nora's "friend"? This dragonfly perched right on her nose and lingered there for a while! 

~  *  ~  *  ~  *  ~

♥ We are so grateful to have had these grand moments! ♥

Friday, June 3, 2022

Visiting Kati and Family

"I hope we get to enjoy some of the visit . . . ," said Vee

"I do plan to gather some photos (mostly of the babies) and share the joy," I replied. 

And then . . . 

** total silence ** 
while we have a whirlwind couple of weeks filled with sunshine and shadow
and more work on the sunroom

But now I have gathered some glimpses of our time with Kati and Andrew and the babies. So much sweetness! 

Believe it or not, this is the first time that the three of us have visited Kati that they were not moving or had a newborn! This time, we were able to venture out a little . . . a couple of restaurants, a little antiquing and shopping, and (of course) a coffee shop. Mostly though, we were content to spend time at their home, hanging out together, playing with the babies, reading books to the babies, bathing the babies, talking, and eating. Kati and Andrew are both good cooks and we ate well! I had my first shrimp-and-grits at their house, made by Kati. I guess she's a true Southern girl now! 

Caleb turned two a couple of weeks before our visit. He has just started sleeping in a toddler bed. (He really wanted Papa to sit in it with him and Ellie!) He says so many words now. (One of my favorites is "G'an.") He absolutely loves to be read to, and he has his favorites that he asks for over and over. He is not a passive listener, but interacts with his books, naming all the animals on the pages, pointing out the farmer's shadow, or filling in a word or two. Caleb is a busy, happy toddler!

Ellie was 10.5 months during our visit. She is one of the most pleasant babies that I have ever seen. She rarely cries. She smiles easily. She "talks" a lot. She is friendly. And she watches everyone . . . especially Caleb! She is learning new skills every day. She had just learned to wave before our visit. Since then, she has learned to clap her hands. While we were there, she learned to climb up into Caleb's newly converted toddler bed. She was so proud of herself! 

photo by Bekah

Photo by Bekah

Photo by Bekah

Photo by Bekah

Papa in the toddler bed :) 

Although we hated to leave, we left with full and happy hearts, so thankful for the time we shared together. 

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