Making myself feel better …

I ALWAYS miss Sid and George when they are off at college, but Sunday mornings are worse. WAY WORSE. Our house is far more quiet than it normally is and there are less people to cook breakfast for. I guess it’s like that all week when they are gone, but Sunday, it all just seems to effect me more. BIG SIGH. It might sound silly, but when I feel down like this I drink my coffee out of one of the Northern California mugs that they have given me. It somehow makes me feel closer to them … and THAT makes me happy.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you make yourself feel better!!!

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Sending a whole lotta love …

I am a little behind getting Sid and George’s college care packages in the mail this month. I like to get them out around the first of the month but that didn’t happen. I have always made Sid’s college care packages but last year I found a company that provided a year full of care packages and they handled EVERYTHING! So I decided to give them a try for George. They sent out GREAT baskets full of treats that were scheduled for delivery about once a month. They hit all the major stuff too, with a welcome box, holiday boxes, finals boxes and even one that got sent “out of the blue”. Each was delivered with a handwritten card that I submitted with my order. I loved the idea! And I really thought the cost was reasonable. But here’s the kicker … while I have absolutely no complaints about the company itself, I still HATED IT! I missed sending personalized packages so much! So this year I am back to making them all myself. And I’m loving it! Today I completed almost three months of care packages, minus the perishable foods, plus a special treat for midterms and finals. I am on a roll! And although my packages aren’t going to be as timely or as elaborate as the ones I can order, they are going to be sent with something that I think is going to make them much better.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you send a whole lotta love!!!

And then there were two …

Sid left very early this morning to return to school. With George already at school that leaves just Libs and Reese at home. The whole house sounds and feels different. It looks different too. Inside is a stark aftermath of a busy summer. Outside looks almost barren with the lack of cars. The changes are almost disorienting. After coming home from moving Sid into her dorms her freshman year a friend of mine came over to visit me. She said that she was shocked by the energy change in our home. And I couldn’t agree with her more. I was struck at that very moment with a true understanding of what it meant when people say “making your house a home”. I had always lived that way but it was such a different way to experience those feelings. Our house is a living breathing thing because of the souls who both live and visit here. They are the ones who make it a home. And the changes I see and feel around here are because of the love I feel for them. Do I wish that they were always here? Yes. A million times, yes. But I also love the things that this house has become because of their absence. Adulthood comes with new challenges and new sources of joy. This is now the place where they return to share all of that with me. I am comforted knowing that this house is a place that, no matter where life takes them, will always be their home. It is their safe haven in tough times and a place to celebrate all the good. A place that they can always count on to receive unconditional love.

We are considering a big move in the next two years and my thoughts have been drawn to our future house. Where will it be? What will it look like? It’s a bit anxiety provoking with all the unknowns. But then I remember that it really doesn’t matter where the house will be or what it will look like. That house will be filled with everything this house is and more. Undoubtedly our family will grow with marriages and grandchildren. I simply can’t wait for those kind of wonderful changes! Those kind of blessings sure makes all the growing pains that I feel now seem trivial. And when I get past all my wild emotions, deep down I know that our new house will become a home with a familiar story to tell. The story of a family who’s love, history, adventures and traditions make their house a home.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you are down to two!!!

Time changed much but not us …

I work up early this morning, despite being up way too late. The house was quiet and I began feeling a bit nostalgic. I always do this time of year. With summer break ending and the new school year starting in a few weeks I tend to feel similar to how I do on New Years Eve. It’s my time to reflect and I look back on summers past. With two adult children off to college I feel even more emotional than I normally do. And it all came out this morning! I spent much of my early morning looking through old pictures of my kids. I laughed, I cried and I soaked in every wonderful memory. It is like time stood still for a moment, but also flashed by in an instant. It’s all a blur but I remember almost every second of it. It sort of makes me sad yet I also delight in knowing that so much has changed but not the love we share and the memories we keep. They are our constant and they are our story. And they are what makes us … US. I am comforted in knowing that no amount of time or distance can ever change that.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you can say that time changed much but not us!!!

Loved and needed …

Having four children, and one with special needs, comes with an incredible amount of responsibility. Even with two adult children now, life can often seem like it’s pulling me in every direction possible. Maybe even in some directions not yet discovered by scientists and mathematicians, HA! I am constantly doing something for someone or planning something that needs to be (or someone wants to be) done. I am their GO-TO person for problem-solving and … cash. HA, again! We share long talks late at night and I receive ugly early morning wake up calls. I have event alerts on my phone for us along with calendars (TWO) posted in our kitchen to keep us organized. Every night I review my To-Do List for the next day. It is usually filled with things that they need help with. I am available 24 hours a day 7 days a week for them. Until I die. And even then, l’m sure that I’ll figure out a way to still stay involved. HA, again again!

Now, don’t get me wrong. I am NOT complaining. Actually, I feel like I’m bragging.

Why?

Because my kids are incredible human beings. They are thoughtful, kind, loving, responsible and driven. And they LOVE and NEED me. To be LOVED is wonderful. To be NEEDED magnifies love 10-fold. Heck, 1,000,000-fold. Is that even a thing?!?! Regardless, my heart is full. My life is blessed, SO BLESSED, because of these humans who I love beyond measure. It may sound exhausting, and honestly some days it is, but I wouldn’t trade this life with them for anything. I love that they still need me. That they choose to make me THAT person. Because really, they don’t have to. They can turn to friends and other family members who would be there for them just as readily as I am. But they go to me. Their mom. And well, I don’t think there has ever been anything in my life that has been quite so rewarding and humbling. I thank God every day for them and the privilege of being their mom. And all the duties and responsibilities that go with it and that I take on. It’s an honor. Truly.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you feel LOVED and NEEDED!!!

Our summer story …

It’s (almost) the most WONDERFUL time of the year! Tomorrow is Libs’ and Reese’s last day of school. Thank you SWEET BABY JESUS! It has been a long DOOZY of a school year and these girls need and deserve a break.

Summers look a lot different around here now. With Sid in San Francisco full time and George home from college but working, it’s definitely not the summers of our past. Gone are their days of early childhood. Thankfully, because of Reese, we are still allowed glimpses of them peppered into our every evolving lives. I cherish these moments that keep us connected to those carefree times. I wish that they were as abundant as they were, but I have learned to take what I can get. And trust me, I am grateful. Because even though they occur differently now, they are all still so precious to me. So. So. Precious.

As I look back over the past school year I am reminded of how quickly time passes. People grow out of routines. Life simply changes. Again, I am thankful. And even more so that this family of mine, just seems to roll with it. I am the one who hangs on tighter to the past. Which is silly because, as painful as I find all of this sometimes, I have found that change has never let me down. I have learned that as the pages of time continue to turn, it allows us to write new and adventurous tales into our family history. It is a perspective that has not come easy for me. But I’m continually feeling the comfort it brings me. It is nice to know that nothing is truly ending … it’s just the beginning of another new chapter.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you begin to write your summer story!!!

Thoughtful …

My son George and I went on a hike today. I had been wanting to hike a local trail as it passes by a plant maze. Not quite the labyrinth we hiked to in the Bay Area, but still interesting enough for me to want to check out.

I have mentioned, about a million times now, that my big kids really go out of their way for me. They make such an effort to participate in outings when they know its something I really want to do. I know that they have better things to do and things that they might want to do more. So it means the world to me that they willingly still hang out with their mom. They really are THE BEST.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you are thoughtful!!!