Friday, June 29, 2012

Happy Birthday to my Sister!

Yesterday, my sister celebrated one of those "milestone" birthdays.  I won't say which one because as we all know once we hit 29 we are 29 forever.  Nevertheless, I thought of her all day giving thanks that God brought her in my life. God made us sisters but life made us best friends!  Our lives have always been so intertwined in that there were many times we were just extensions of each other.  Time and physical distance have created separation that is a constant reminder of how much I miss her and my heart aches to know that yet another birthday has passed without me being able to celebrate with her.  We haven't seen each other in 2 years and given that she is a busy stay at home wife and mom of three very active kiddos and I live a life with a full time job, 4 kiddos and a stay at home husband, we just don't even get a moment to catch up on the phone and although physical distance keeps us apart our hearts are always connected.....that is the way it is with sisters.  In fact just this week, Emily and Grace were arguing and fussing with each other saying things like, "I wish you weren't my sister" and I had to remind them that one day their relationship would be the most precious one in the world.

So, Happy Birthday to an incredible wife, an amazing mama, and a most wonderful sister!!!!!  I miss and love you beyond words.

Here she is with her beautiful family!
 4 years ago at Cody's Baptism and our last photo together.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Colorado Fires

Having lived in Florida for many years I weathered my share of hurricanes and witnessed first hand the devasting destruction of how powerful weather can be but never in my experience have I seen something as frightening as what we witnessed here in my city yesterday.  Last Saturday morning as the girls and I left the gym I looked out over the parking lot where there is usually a magnificant view of the mountains and saw a large black plume of smoke.  We listened to the radio and discovered that the canyon just behind this ridge was on fire and for three days we stayed tuned to the news praying for rain and for fire fighters to keep the fire from crossing the ridge into neighborhoods on the west side of our City.  The fire fighting seemed to be going well until yesterday when weather conditions provided the perfect opportunity for this fire to cross the ridge and as I left my neighborhood to pick Joshua up from summer school this is what I saw.......

Within, a few hours this was the scene as the fire invaded a neighborhood where Mike and I had seriously considered moving when we were searching for homes in preparation for our move.  In fact the street of the home we looked at was mentioned in news casts and we are certain that it probably was destroyed.  The fire was so powerful that fire fighters were forced to retreat while over 32,000 residents were evacuated within a very short time.  Although we live on the other side of town and far from any danger we still found ourselves scared and in shock as to how quickly one could lose everything  as well as how uncontrollable fire can be.  We awoke in the middle of the night with the smell of smoke in our home even though our windows were shut tight and air conditioning having run all night long knowing just across the highway from our home an entire community was going up in smoke.

We currently have no news as to how many homes have been lost and the weather conditions are favorable for spreading today so we are praying for a mighty God to reach down from Heaven and heal our land.

A shot from the AirForceAcademy Chapel which is about 5 miles west of our home with smoke plumes billowing behind.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Is it Summer?

Well, it is summertime but I will have to say that the living is not exactly easy. In fact I sat in my office one day last week after having just traveled over 60 miles in one morning dropping 4 kids at their camps and activities, with an inbox full of emails from some pretty impatient and demanding parents and dreamed of this……

Ahh, to sit on the beach with a warm breeze blowing listening to the soft sounds of waves crashing against the sand.  Then the phone rang, jolting me back into the reality of my life.  A life that is now characterized by chaos and stress.  I honestly believe that somewhere along this path I have been walking, my mind was lost and I do wonder if it will ever be found.  Just in the past couple of days I have brewed at least 2 maybe 3 cups of coffee in my Keurig only to discover coffee pouring down my kitchen counter for lack of a cup.  I drove out of the driveway the other morning without a child, ran a stop sign, tried to make a bank deposit at the dry cleaners all the while leaving the house every day not remembering whether I brushed my teeth or not.  The stretching that has occurred over the past 1 ½ years has caused me to become frayed, not at all like what I used to be.  I lose my temper so easily, I am disorganized and unfocused and filled constantly with negativity and fatigue.  I have neglected some of the most important things in my life in exchange for a full-time job working, sometimes 45-50 hours week with the addition of weekends spent working on all the things I couldn’t get done during the week. I am exhausted all the time having poured my time and energy into other people and lacking the energy to make it through a page of a chapter book with my own kids before falling asleep.    I have debated on whether I should just close the blog given that I don’t have the time to devote to keep it current coupled with the fact that we just don’t do much blog-worthy stuff anymore.   I barely even take photos.  I know, not a very pretty picture which is why I really haven’t wanted to blog.  I am a firm believer that if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all and I really haven’t had anything uplifting to say recently.  Life certainly hasn’t turned out exactly like I had planned but then sometimes it doesn’t, we are forced to accept things that we can’t change and live with decisions we thought were a good move at the time.  We simply just have to make lemonade out of lemons.  Well, along with my mind my love and ability to pull together culinary treats has vanished amidst the chaos of managing a demanding job, 4 kids, a house, laundry, grocery shopping, errand running and just making sure I am fully dressed (with matching shoes) when I leave the house.  I am hopeful however that with a few weeks of disconnecting from my job that I can at least recover a recipe for some sweet lemonade in life.  It may not happen but I desperately desire to reclaim some order to my house (at least have some clean clothes to wear), re-connect some friendships and family relationships that have been severely neglected and love on my kiddo’s who I know have missed their mommy.  So while this blog post is not filled with beautiful pics of fun summer times of our family, I do hope it may let some mom who may be struggling with life know that she is not alone.

Hoping for some Lemonade!