If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

What Lies Within

I am writing this post as I sit beside my father's hospital bed looking out the window over the lights of the city at one o'clock in the morning.

I have spent the past few days thinking back.

I have spend the past few days anticipating the future and what it might hold.

I have listened.

I have cajoled.

I have followed along with my hands out, hovering, and at-the-ready to catch him if he stumbled.

I have focused to remain calm.

I have spoken with firmness.

I have spoken with compassion.

I have asked questions.

I have asked more questions.

I have laughed.

I have cried.

I have prayed.

Daddy was recently diagnosed with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis.

We have struggled to know how best to support him.

There is no good answer.

Maria Shriver's recent post resonates with me as I sit here beside my father's hospital bed looking out the window over the lights of the city at one o'clock in the morning.

Daddy and I both rest peacefully this night knowing that, "What lies behind us and in front of us is nothing compared to what lies within us."

Note: I will periodically post stories relating to Daddy's journey and ours as well.  Please know that I am sharing out of love and compassion and want others to know that I am sharing not what has happened but what we have become as a result.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Some Fun

It really doesn't matter how old one is.
Getting together with cousins will bring out the giggles.
Is it the anticipation or the giving or the getting...
...of blowing on that cute little belly that is the most fun?

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Valentine's and Grands

It is always fun to gift the grands.  Valentine's Day is a perfect excuse for gifting to them, too.
Mike and I put together little bags of treats.
The littles got a ball, some Play Dough, chocolates, and bubbles to blow.
The infant got bathtub toys and a scrubby.
The big girls got word search tablets, Play Dough, chocolates, nail polish, beads for necklaces, and bubbles to blow.
There was investigating and some serious play with their treats.
Some folks learned quickly who might be a soft touch to open chocolate after chocolate for little folks to taste.
The older ones took care of the little ones when sticky hands came about.
A quick little scrub...
...some words of wisdom were shared.
and a demonstration of how things are done passed from one to another.
Then, a little reassurance that all is well.
Just a quick little passage of wisdom from a grand to her Grand B...
...a nod that probably went un-noticed by others but was reassuring to the two of them...
...and it was back to the romping...
...and stomping...
...that makes getting together fun times for all!

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

The Pounding

My niece, Megan, got married last month.
She got married right in the middle of that snowstorm we had.

The wedding was far, far south of here - near the Alabama line and still they had issues because of the snowstorm.
They wound up having to change the venue the day before the ceremony because the road to the church was un-navigate-able.
They wound up having to prepare their own corn boil for the wedding reception because the caterer couldn't get there.

They started the ceremony a little late so that some of the guests could slip and slide to the wedding.
My parents, Mike and I weren't able to get there.

So, at the last minute, they picked up the phone and FaceTimed with my parents.
They adapted.
They made it work.
They are married as married can be.
Wrapped with smiles and love that only newlyweds can wear.
They shared the joy of receiving things to make their home feel the presence of family.
They began building memories that will follow them forever.
They opened the gifts which were assembled with love and happy thoughts.
They learned a little more about their family members and one another.
Their pantry will be fuller.
Their bellies will be warmed and filled with the love shared by family.
Their home will be blessed.
Their home will have decorations and touches which surround them with the hugs of relatives.
We planned a simple affair.
Our children, Mike, and I recently hosted an old-fashioned pounding to celebrate their new life together.
We served simple fare.
Bryan grilled up some Boston butts to make delicious Bar-B-Que and stirred up some of his special white sauce to top it.
Bridgette and Jessica baked up cute little brownie bites.
Jessica stirred up some slaw.
I picked up corn-light-bread and chips.
I stirred up some baked beans.
We invited aunts and uncles in our extended family to join us for the celebration.
We chatted and laughed and enjoyed the fellowship
We jotted down some advice on marriage for the newlyweds.
Some advice was philosophical and some was short, quick, and to the point!
Some advice was straightforward and some was wreathed with emotion but all was heartfelt!
Some advice took lots of thought and reflection.
Some was more everyday and humorous.
All of it was offered with love and practicality.
The folks brought gifts that were practical, utilitarian, and sensible as well as a few which were extraordinary and unique.
Wishes were wrapped and included with merriment.
Blessings abound and happiness multiplied while we supped and interacted with joy for the newlyweds.
From eldest to youngest, we al surrounded them.
A good time was had by all.
And we sent them off with a bounty, warm hearts, and sweet memories.
May they have a long and happy life together!