Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Our Aunt Dorothy

So much to write about but, I'm going to go completely out of order and blog about today.

Today was the memorial service for Aunt Dorothy.  Almost 12 years ago, I married Tony and married into his family.  Aunt Dorothy was never just Tony's aunt, she was my aunt too.  She quickly became one of my favorite people because of her warmth and generosity.  Aunt Dorothy helped me when I lived in Oregon because Tony was in the hospital there.  She opened up her home to my parents so they could come and help.  She opened up her home for us.  She always had a smile on her face and something to share.  I admired her because of her love of her family, her love of God, her love of beautiful flowers and gardens, her love of the outdoors and her love of adventures.  She was my kind of woman.  I admired her and respected her so much.  I have always wanted to develop my gardening skills to match hers.  Her home was always beautiful and inviting.  She collected nativities like me!  She was an artist and shared her talents online so we were able to see her love of capturing beautiful things.  

Her memorial service was beautiful and fit her perfectly.  Andrew gave the Eulogy and he shared some of her own words about being a mother.  I think all of the mothers in the audience were breathing a sigh of relief to know that we really all do have feelings of inadequacy.  It's normal.  Dorothy was an extraordinary person who did things for others.  Her friend, Kathy Haynie gave a beautiful tribute to her by stating 8 lessons she's learned by being Dorothy's friend over the years.  Then she played two songs on the Ukulele.  

When someone passes, it is comforting to know that we can see them again, however, there is still a major loss because there is so much we'd like to do with them still in this life.  I keep thinking about her dedicated husband who had looked forward to traveling with her during his retirement.  I think of the grand kids and the moments in their lives that she will miss. Then I have to flip things so that I'm not thinking about the memories that will be missed but the wonderful life and legacy she left during her 61 years of life.  She lived a full life and though memories will be missed, there are thousands upon thousands of memories that everyone can treasure.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Max's Birthday Continued!

Grandma didn't mail Max's birthday presents because we were coming up.  And, because his birthday had a sick bump along the way, I decided to celebrate one more time.  We sang to him and he opened the awesome presents.  Then we had ice cream cones.

Playing in the Meadows

We made it to Vegas and were very happy to meet our little nephews.  They are special little guys.  The kids were also very happy to spend time with family.  We did a little bit of everything.

We loved swimming.  It was perfect swimming weather.  

Grandpa caught some of Ev's personality on camera!

Evelyn LOVES her Uncle Doug!

Ev and little Dan were good buddies.

Uncle Mike loving little Ev

I got to love on little Liam.

Driving in the Desert and Visiting Darin

After Tony drove through the night, he let me take a turn in the morning.  I counted the road kill that I passed in that 2 hour stretch (Tony loves to drive).  28!  28!  And you know a drive doesn't have great scenery when you have to count road kill.

We passed Ely, Nevada with it's nod to the past.  This is where we changed the kids out of their pajamas and switched drivers again.

I was reading outloud to the kids from, "The Land of Stories" and right after Alex and Conner escaped from the Troll and Goblin kingdom, we came up on this scenery.  We spent the next half hour defending our car from trolls and goblins.  Jase would "SMASH them".  Can you see the goblins in the rocks too?

Evelyn was funny.  She kept taking Max's arm and kissing it.

Tony is the handsomest driver ever!

Then I got to have dinner with this awesome brother of mine and my awesome sister-in-law and cute cute nephew Drew, who is growing a stache.  Wha?  I didn't think to take pics at the time so Darin obliged with this last minute one.  Then we made plans to meet up again in Sacramento so we could see Ash and her fam.  

Visiting the Dennys

The Dennys were nice enough to let us stop by for a short visit on our way to Las Vegas.  They only live 2 1/2 hours away but it was a perfect spot since we left after Tony got off of work.  Jase loved playing with Duke.

Tony took a nap to prepare for driving through the night and some of us played Rummikub.

The kids loved seeing the hamster.

Then we put pajamas on the kids, gave them a little Melatonin and this is what they looked like about half an hour back on the road.  Tony drove all night.  I slept for 45 minutes but other than that, we were talking together.  Date night! ; )

Swimming Kids!

Oh my goodness, we have been busy!  I wanted to post a few pics and videos of the kids at swim lessons during the first full week of summer vacation.  

Look at my big girl using a kick board!

Ryan is feeling brave with goggles! He swam with his face under the water!

Ryan is jumping more!

Max is learning to dive!