Wednesday, September 22, 2021


Oh Layla Girl, you were the sweetest and most joyful dog. We were in debate up until your final moment as to whether you were a complete idiot or smart enough to play dumb really well. Noah says we were playing checkers while you played chess. I think he might be right. You played hard to the very end and loved us all well. I'm so glad I chose to rescue you and make you part of our family, despite questioning my sanity for doing so repeatedly since. You, my pretty girl are one of a kind and I'm going to miss you and your shenanigans. I'm praying heaven has bottomless bowls, no scales and lots of treats. Kiss your brother for me. 

Friday, September 17, 2021

Sometimes I Say Bad Words

Another day and another kid commented on her dad's post-workday body odor. In some ways, I'm dreading the empty nest years and his target selection. For now, there are enough other people besides me for him to pick on. 

A deer jumped in front of my car on the way home from school. I locked up the brakes and swerved to avoid contact. I narrowly missed the deer and yelled, "hey Buddy, that was not a good decision!" Ty, who was in the passenger seat took a minute to absorb what happened and later commented, "I'm really proud of how you handled that, Mom. You didn't even say bad words." Thanks Ty. I needed that win.

Erin is officially on the website now as a team member for CCAP Across the Map. She has been involved in several late night virtual meetings and is spending a significant amount of time on research for a few of their upcoming projects. The work invigorates her and keeps her busy too. We are pretty darn proud of her. 

The mornings this week have been rather difficult. I'm not sleeping well again, fighting daily headaches and simply stewing. I have not yet figured out how to let go of the things I cannot control. Sigh. I have been seeking God's peace and craving quiet. Wednesday morning He delivered a golden sky after a short rain. It was stunning and I was grateful.

Anne kidnapped me for a few hours this week. It was after a morning I failed to contain all the cuss words and told my son to get his a$$ in the car. I had a headache and he was fairly certain he had a solid argument for skipping school that day. He did not get the answer he wanted and I lost patience. I'm told it happens. I just prefer to not start my day this way. The day after, Anne called to see if my day had improved. It hadn't but I didn't have the heart to say so. I was stung by a bee between my toes and my foot swelled up like a purple foot balloon. This is not attractive or comfortable. A kid had a panic attack on the road. I had other people's children after work and there wasn't a piece of bread or fruit in the house. I literally wanted to crawl into bed and pretend I wasn't the adult in charge. The break Anne provided this week was necessary. How do we as moms get those and keep the house running? I'd like to know. 

We learned all our kids and sons-in-law will be here for one evening in early November. I am beyond excited. We haven't been together since last Thanksgiving. I started a group text to brainstorm a meal and hopefully a family photo. It quickly derailed into our typical sarcastic hilarity but everyone is on board for whatever we can squeeze into the few hours we have together. I just need to convince a few family members we aren't getting matching crocs to commemorate the occasion. My people are weird. 

Today, I took a furlough day and Erin took a personal day to run final bridal brunch errands. We are hosting an intimate gathering to celebrate Makenna in the morning. The day off together was delightful. We had breakfast, shopped and caught up in complete, uninterrupted sentences. We needed the day.

Saturday, September 11, 2021

Labor Day Week

We spent the weekend relaxing. Grace's family joined us for dinner. We were invited to sit by a fire afterward with Anne's family. She was hosting the Edwards from Houston so it was fun to catch up. I had tea with friends twice and squeezed in a quick engagement session for Makenna and Noah. We purchased a mattress set for our upcoming guest room and have plans to quickly create a space Lauren and Taylor can occupy in November. It will be their only trip up this year and I'm excited to have space for them to stay with us. By Monday evening I thought I could use another three day weekend. 
He recovered beautifully from surgery. Keeping the little ninja down is proving difficult for his parents as result. 

It was a busy week, with a commitment literally every evening and a pesky full time job that keeps me hopping. In a perfect world, that job would be part time so I could keep up with all.the.things. I do not live in a perfect world. But at Bible study the last few weeks, I've admired Lana's hydrangeas and finally walked over to snap a quick photo with my phone. Life is crazy but there is peace to be found if we just take a moment to notice.

Makenna and Noah had me squeeze in an engagement session before they elope next month. We are on a short timeline with these two now that they have decided a quick wedding is more important than a big wedding. The house they are renting needs to be flipped by October first so they can move in the day or two before their October third wedding. It's going to be a busy weekend despite the simplicity of their private ceremony. So when my friends remind me to slow down and take care of my health, I laugh. Have they met my children?

Ty and I ran to Lexington after school Friday to celebrate my dad's birthday. I asked my nephew to capture a group selfie. This is the best we had to offer and I think it's perfect. Well, for us anyway. And then he thought he would prank me with a silly selfish of himself. The joke's on him because share photos. I love this kid.

On the ride home from school this week, Ava declared she'd found the boy she will marry. I asked his name. She said, "George." I asked, "George who?" She very seriously responded, "um, this isn't a knock-knock joke." Goodness, I love that kid and miss working in kindergarten. 

Friday, September 3, 2021

Hernia, New Driver and a Kid Date

Our future son-in-law helped deliver a baby last Friday night. He wasn't sure quite how to process the experience but knew he no longer wanted tacos afterward. He has held hands while people passed away from an accident but this was his first, and he hopes only, birth. He said the contrast was pretty powerful and he has a whole new level of respect for mothers. 

This week held a permit for Kate and her first time behind the wheel that wasn't a vacant parking lot. She managed well. I felt nauseated anyway.

Our grandson had surgery to repair a hernia this morning. While riding back to the OR, they told him he was on a bed with wheels so he could relax. He crossed his feet and put his arms behind his head and laid back. The boy understands relaxing. He woke from anesthesia angry and pretty mad at the world though. It took all Lauren had in her to calm him. Covid restrictions prevented both of his parents from being there as support. It's  ridiculous. But as the day wore on, he perked up and recovered well. No jumping or running for three weeks seems rather unrealistic since using duct tape is not encouraged. Lauren is requesting prayer.

Last weekend, they went to the zoo and when they got home, Austin requested a family series. I'm so glad he did.

Ty had plans with two different friends this weekend and both had to cancel. Since he was the only kid home tonight, we let him select a date destination. He chose putt-putt golf but by the time we watched him scale rocks, jump over bridges and fish countless balls from the pond, we wondered if perhaps something more physical wouldn't have been better. But we all scored a hole-in-one and celebrated with a slushy afterward. Kid dates on gorgeous evenings are highly recommended. 

Temperatures have dropped and I am grateful. My porch swing has been missed. 

Friday, August 27, 2021

Random Thoughts

I enjoyed an almost perfect day out with a friend who was passing through town on her way back to San Antonio from Dayton. It was then I was reminded how wonderful neighbors can be despite our desire for more land and privacy. I realized over breakfast, across town, I'd left the tea kettle on a warm stove. Leah went over and turned off the burner so my furlough day was not cut short by the need to return home.

My carpool buddies are cuter than yours. And this one knows it too.

The shopping; however, was fruitless because pant designers do not care that I am dressing a new shape with added weight. They have decided rayon and elastic is the way to go. Why? Just why? I am not a toddler learning to go potty all by myself so elastic waists are ridiculous. And what on earth is up with elastic ankles? And pleats?!? Have they lost their minds? This is not a good look for anyone and to be in the better quality stores that allegedly cater to my age group makes absolutely no sense. Pants are overrated anyway; especially when it's still one hundred degrees outside with no relief in sight. 

Way Maker has been on repeat all week in my mind. Kate and I are both leaning on His promise He is working even when we don't see it. I had a heart scan Thursday. I keep thinking about all the ways I can joke about needing it. No matter how I try to spin it though, I'm still not laughing. Results and additional labs will be discussed next week. It will be what it will be. 

Makenna and I slipped away to see a wedding gown in a boutique across town and fell in love. She said yes to the dress. They have decided to elope before the end of the year. They are pretty smart, these two, craving simplicity and togetherness over all the fuss of wedding planning in the midst of a pandemic. 

A sister, the sweet one, made her brother cry over homework. I swear we will survive sixth grade math. There may be tears and gnashing of teeth but we will prevail. Send prayers.
Anyone else remember this? She was fishing in the yard and yelling at her brother for scaring the fish. Well, she has decided to join the fishing club at school. Alrighty then. You do you, sister. You do you.

Friday, August 20, 2021

Life is Loud

The world has been too loud lately; so very loud. Being someone who eliminated the twenty-four hour news cycle decades ago, it took awhile to recognize the impact of watching people destroy one another in real time. I could no longer scroll past the ugly and deactivated Facebook. I had been considering it for some time because a lot of the information I'd like to have about the kids' schools and important issues in the lives of people I care are shared primarily on that platform, but in the end, decided ignorance may very well be bliss. I made no announcement, just quietly escorted myself out while visiting family who spent a half dozen hours debating a vaccine some trust and others don't. I'm exhausted. And while I sat praying for family peace, the pool containing my son burst open. He was sucked through the opening, drug under the deck and spit out through lattice on the other side. Miraculously, he suffered only superficial scrapes and bruises. Is it crazy I looked around at the swirling flood waters and my fully intact son and felt relief? God's got this despite the insanity of it all but as Greg and I processed later, we ran through the "what ifs" and hugged our boy a little tighter. 

Someone is catching up to Grandma and is delighted. I'm guessing they will be eye to eye at Christmas. 

When we weren't arguing about politics and science, we were celebrating birthdays. My mom turned seventy last week. My nephew turns seventeen this week and it is also my sister's birthday. Missing was my son-in-law who also celebrated a birthday this weekend. 

Taken five days before a seizure sent her into the hospital. 

Kate's best friend has been suffering for three weeks with a sudden onset neurological issue. As a strong, multi-sport athlete, it's difficult to see her wheelchair bound, unable to take herself to the restroom. Kate and I are remaining as close as we can without intruding. We spent some time with her Sunday afternoon, laughing and appreciating the small improvement to her constant twitching. The entire situation has been unnerving for everyone involved, including the slew of stumped medical professionals. If you pray, please keep Grace and her family close. Kate could use some prayers as well.
We kidnapped Grace for a Target run Thursday. It was so good to get her out for something other than medical appointments. 

Erin scored an internship with a program designed to spread cervical cancer awareness and provide HPV vaccines in third world countries. She will be gaining multiple certifications and trainings she can use in her future career in healthcare administration. 
We will be updating her headshot this weekend for their new website. We are pretty proud of her ability to turn a painful journey into a passion to protect others.
Greg often comes home from work in desperate need of a shower. Poor Makenna said something about it this week. She is expected to make a full recovery. 

Our sweet grandson experienced his first broken heart when his beloved Carlos died. Austin loved that fish, always the first thing he greeted each morning and the last thing he said goodnight to each night. He called to tell me Carlos was sick and he cried. He wanted to take him to the doctor and was devestated to learn it wouldn't help. His final plea was for Carlos to be small and a baby again so he wouldn't get old and die. That little guy crushed me. 

Kate's first major journalism assignment has her interviewing three people for an article about a significant event in someone's life. She chose to learn more about her dad's accident since the incident occurred years before her birth. We suspect seeing her youth group leader in a similar situation made her more aware of the impact it had on our family. She's also interviewing me and Kristin for different perspectives. I'm looking forward to reading the finished product and seeing what she learns about us in the process.
Me: Ty, have you finished your math homework yet? Ty: no. Oliver won't let me. 

This sweet boy told his mom to send Mimi a cute picture. I'm glad she did. He has surgery to repair his hernia on the third of September.