Friday, November 23, 2012
My cousin Christie. My gorgeous niece. And my super cool new Christmas shirt that I intend to wear as much as possible during the Christmas season.
That look of pure delight... my girls riding on the back of the 4 wheeler with Cousin Christie's husband Nathan. I'm pretty sure this was the highlight of their day.
And that's Cole up front, helping his daddy drive. Cole's mama, Christie, came into our lives when I was 13 years old. She was my baby doll. I dressed her up and fixed her hair and toted her around and loved her to pieces. I still do. And now she has two little dolls of her own.
Smart Pop. Teehee. Still cracks me up. Angie bought tickets for Mawmaw and Pop to see Keith and Kristyn Getty in concert on December 20th and she went ahead and gave them tickets so they would know to plan for it. His ticket was in a SmartPop box... mom's was in...
a nut bar box... Sarabeth looks dubious there...
it was funny...
Mom and Pop and Oscar are up at the Mountain House this weekend. I'm here in the hood... enjoying my new laptop (although I am having some internet connectivity issues which are making me a little ill) and taking care of the rest of the fur babies and stuffing myself with Thanksgiving leftovers and watching lots of CSpan3 and the History Channel and working on ancestry.com and staying in my cozy pjs. Luxurious, lovely weekend ahead for all of us!
Austin made it safely to PA. Haven't heard much from him but that's typical. Ryan's roommate, Charlie, is an old family friend who has been a part of my kids' lives for ten years or so. He's done more towards raising my kids than their dad has... between Ryan and Charlie, I know that Austin will be relatively safe and sound.
I hate the double chin in this picture but love, love, love my Jamie girl posing in a cuddle with me. Sarabeth is at the age where she will suffer a hug but she doesn't exactly cuddle. I always say, "don't just suffer through it... hug me back!" and we laugh. Yesterday it was, "that's a lame, one handed hug... I want both hands!"... and we laughed. But Jamie is an all in, full out, squeeze you hard enough to give you a chiropractic adjustment hugger. I hope that never changes.
And Jamie loves to take pictures. Here she's taking a picture of her Great-Aunt Ginger on the swing set. How blessed are we to have these extended family relationships? I love my Great-Aunt Bette, one of my Steel Magnolias, but the times I have spent around her have been few and far between. I know her better now because of her sweet granddaughters who (through the magic of facebook) have become my friends. My kids and their cousins have been so blessed to be able to know their Great-Aunts and a few Great-Uncles.
This is her own self-portrait.
This is Jamie supervising Pop opening his SmartPop. I love this picture, not for it's great photographic composition but because it shows the precious, close relationship that Sarabeth and Jamie have with their grandparents. I've mentioned recently the twig of our family tree that is mostly broken off and separated from the rest of us... and the fact that we all grieve that loss in our own way... but these girls far and above make up for that in our lives. They love their Mawmaw and Pop (and Aunt Heather) and don't have to be prompted to spend time with us. They fill those empty spaces.
This picture happened because Jamie took me by the hand and said, "let's go outside and see the horses together" and I said, "but Jamie, you know I can't walk far..." and she said, "You can do it! I know you can do it!" Yes, I feel it today. I can tell I did a lot of things yesterday that were bad for my spine... but they were good for my heart. So I posed my Jamie girl for a picture with the horse looking over her shoulder and... the horse moved before I could take the picture...
I probably have a hundred pictures that Sarabeth and I have taken together over the past ten years... the difference now is that I'm not bending down... we're standing level beside each other... she's almost as tall as me.
This year has brought a lot of changes and transitions and crossroads into my life. I'm thankful for all the new and exciting possibilities. I'm thankful for surviving Austin's high school years. I'm thankful he's back in the nest. I'm thankful that I'M back in the nest with my parents. I'm thankful for the circle that remains unbroken, for the things that don't change, for the bonds that are strong enough to hold us together even when times are tough. I'm just so grateful for all that this year has brought, in joy and in tears, in good times and pain, God has sustained us and helped us to grow stronger through things that should have broken us.
God is still good.
Posted by Heather at 8:39 AM