Saturday, December 27, 2014

Annual Christmas Video (2014)

We have had a very busy season!
 Merry Christmas to your all, check out our annual Christmas video!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

4 years

Dear Carrisa,

4 years now....
I'm hoping that closes that gap on when we will see each other next, because it seems a little to far from our last visit, don't you think?

 It's December 11th, your heaven day.   Sometimes this day feels like the only day where I really get to sit down and think of you and mourn you.... yes although you are fully healed and with Jesus, you are greatly missed here, incredibly so.

And as much as I would like to say that my day has been extraordinary or special or different or somehow profound, it has not.

I planned on waking the kids up early to take them to get donuts and balloons, you know to celebrate you!  I envisioned happy sequels and reminiscing of you, but it went something like this

At 12:15 am, Norah's blood glucose monitor goes off, saying her blood sugar is low, and no it is not a false alarm, she needed some sugar, quickly.

Maya wakes up with a bad dream, sobbing about having to leave her cousins house.

Morning comes and I forgot to move "Christmas tree" our elf  from the previous day, devastating!
Norah starts crying because she could not have her advent treat until the afternoon.

After going to the donut shop we went to get your balloons, but the floral department wasn't open, so the produce man had to help us get balloons, taking about 5 hours to blow each one up.  We are already seriously late for school, Sarah lets go of her balloon in the store, Levi is crying because he wants a balloon, Norah mysteriously cuts her head and needs a band-aide instantly and I can't get my camera to work to capture this awesome memory.

We get to our field to release your balloons and Sarah won't get out of the car because she wants to watch Elmo, Norah lets go of her balloon accidentally,  and Levi is headed toward the street. 
I'm feeling pretty good right now, you know everything is going awesome.

I somehow capture a photo
DSC_0616 DSC_0631 and then we send you your balloons, but cannot watch them go into the sky because it was so bloody bright outside

I still have to get the girls to school and Sarah is balling about not watching Elmo.  The crying continues into the school building, echoing through the halls and now I am 20 minutes late for my Dr. Appointment.

yep, it's Decemeber 11th and I hope you're laughing

because as much as this is not what I planned for my day, it is what God had in mind.

It's kind of like my life...not quite what I planned

Sis, sometimes I want things in life to be easy, I keep waiting for easy and waiting and waiting.....
But easy, is not what God has planned for me.
You know how when Dad and Darren died, people would say, " God won't give you more than you can handle"?  But the truth is, He does, He does give us more than we can handle so that we lean on Him.   And this year, once again has brought on incredible hardship, every single day is hard keeping Norah alive, balancing life, love, family and what is eternal, and every single day I have had to rely on Him.

 and then something else unplanned happened, well I'm sure you knew about it!

a knock at the door, a gift, a gift filled with love, the love from a body of believers. Tears were overflowing.  The Lord knew exactly what I needed.
It has been a long time since I have felt love from a body of believers, not just a member, but an entire body!

Carissa, I miss you everyday.  Even on the ones I don't have time to fully grieve.  I missed being able to call you to tell you that Brett passed his final CPA exam, and that I had been deeply hurt by a friend.   Or that Levi can zoombie walk now and that little Sarah told Brett " you don't have a heart."  And the Maya has already been to the orthodontist, shocker, I know, with our family history of teeth! It's the life moments.  And it is Norah.  So much Norah.  I can't wait for the two of you to meet again, both fully healed.

Love you sis,

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Life and photos

Sometimes life and photos intertwine

You know, that day.... the one that just isn't quite right

when your phone breaks, your sunglasses snap

and computer dies

and then

you fall into the freezing cold pool unexpectedly

or when you wear the wrong shoes with your outfit

and you just feel totally grumpy

and you run screaming at your mom telling her not to take a picture

or an alien arm, just seems to get in your way DSC_0276

there are just some days where the photo, life just doesn't turn out right....
Maybe your eyes just aren't open enough

and the sunshine isn't coming the right direction DSC_0331

But then in the midst of all the mess ups, there is something beautiful

 that moment when the sun seems to hit in just the right direction

and you are surrounded by love thanksgiving13

 and laughter

when smiles fill your heart thanksgiving15\

and buddy the tiny elf comes to visit you

there are those moments in life that capture something so special thanksgiving8

something worth keeping thanksgiving14

even if at first it doesn't come out quite right

you will always have another day, chance

and then it's easy to laugh about all the not so great things that happened before thanksgiving4

Remember, if you are having a bad day, there is always something good hidden in it.  Even if you can't see it right away.