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Saturday, January 22, 2011


As I watch Madison grow up before my eyes, it is hard comprehend that she has reached this point in her life. My whole life and who I was in it changed so quickly at the age of 14 going into 15. As Madison turned 15, it hit me hard that I was motherless at that age. Even though she is independent in so many ways and helps me so much, I can not imagine her having to take on the burden of running the house. I know that she could do it, but I can't imagine her having to. At 15, I felt so grown. I didn't feel like a kid trying to do a woman's job. Maybe it was because I had Vicki there to help me....maybe it was because I just knew that it had to be done. At the time it seemed like a clean break from childhood into adulthood, but looking back now I know that I slid into the role with one arm reaching back to keep my hand on the child that I was, like a worried mother in a crowded street with her child. I now know that the child did indeed slip away with my mother, leaving only an empty shirt for me to cling to, tricking me with it's scent of childhood and my mother's perfume. I often wonder if I would be different had things not happened the way they did. I know that it made me independent but also needy...expecting too much of people, especially the ones that I love. It made me appreciate life and the gift of aging, while at the same time caused me to forever view life through the eyes of a child, searching for a way back to the body that it was snatched from. This is not a bad thing. I am serious about the family and home that God has given me to care for, but I don't forget to stop and play....to enjoy the day that God has chosen to give to me. I play with my children not only because I love to play with them, but also because I know that the children inside of them have already begun to become lost in the crowded street that is life. It is not for me to hang on to them, but it is my privilege to enjoy them as much as I can while they are here. I pray that they will be able to do this on their own time, without having to reach back, grasping for something that slipped away too soon. At the same time, I know from my experience that good will come from whatever path God chooses for them to take. God chose to snatch me from my childhood, but he also chose to let me be here to share in my children's. What a revelation it was to watch my daughter turn 15......even more so to be here to hold her hand through it.

Friday, January 07, 2011

Christmas 2010

Christmas slipped upon us this year and was gone before I could even grasp that it was about to happen. I don't know if its because we didn't take quite as long off as we normally do from school or not. It was fun, but I just didn't feel like we fit everything in that I wanted to do this year.
Jeff and I did make it to our church Sunday school party. We are trying to do more with them. They are such a great group of friends, but we tend to get content with just being home. The party was very nice.On the Sunday before Christmas, we went to Jeff's parents' church to see their musical. This is something that I enjoy doing every year. My niece Kinley spent a few days with us this week, so she was able to go to the musical with us. Jeff's parents are still at the church that we attended for years with them. It's always nice to go back for a visit.
I bought two different ornaments to make, but we only got around to making one of them. We made them with the little beads that you shape then iron together. These were very fun ornaments to make and turned out so cute!! I even made a glow-in-the-dark one!We found a cute gingerbread tree to do instead of the regular gingerbread house. Of course, Madison LOVED decorating it. Carter helped her put it together and placed all of the beads. All I did was place the star on the top. As always, we spent Christmas Eve at Daddy's with my family. The kids opened their one gift before he left to go Daddy's. We were happy to have two more added to our growing number. Kevin's baby, Gus, was there as well as Jessica's new baby, Emery. It was great having babies around again.I loved watching my dad hand out the gifts. Daddy and Lynn with all of their grandchildren and one great grandchild!!
Christmas DayI love the way the living room looks after all of the gifts have been opened. I straighten it all up, but most of it stays in the living room until after New Year's, when we take the tree down.We had Christmas with Jeff's family on the day after Christmas.FireworksMimi and PawPaw with the grandchildrenChristmas 2010

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Augustus Ryder (Gus)

My brother and his wife had their first child in August. Unfortunately, they were in Florida when he was born, so many of us were not able to be there for the event. Recently, they came home, and the kids and I were finally able to go see them. Little Gus is so precious and at a very fun age for my kids to enjoy. We got to see him, as well as my great niece, Emery, again on Christmas Eve and my parents' house. They were so cute together, and it was great to have little babies around again. I hope we are able to spend more time with them before they leave for their next pipelining job!!

Girls' Weekend

My sister-in-law, Danielle, and I took our daughters to Nachitoches to see the Christmas lights and fireworks in December. Danielle took her daughter last year and asked if we wanted to go with them this year. It was so much fun, and the fireworks were amazing. We got there in time to see the parade then found a spot near the water to see the fireworks. It was very crowded, but we found a very nice spot to spread our blankets!
My BIL got us a great room in a new hotel. We enjoyed the firepit and nice sitting area after we got back from the fireworks! Thankyou, Danielle and Bailee, for inviting us to share in your fun weekend. Madison and I both had an amazing time!

Monday, January 03, 2011

Our Last Year

Awanas has been a part of my life since before I even had children. I remember signing up to serve as a listener with a group of girls in the church that Jeff and I attended before we had children. Even before I was a mother, I just felt a need to be with children. I wanted to be involved in the things that my children might some day be a part of. It was exciting when Madison finally reached the age to start Cubbies, the youngest group in the Awana club. She was so proud to get her blue vest, as were Patrick and Carter when they came along. Each time Madison moved up to the next vest or shirt, the boys would become excited about getting one of their own. When my children were all in blue and red, I remember thinking that the TNT children, dressed in green shirts, were so old compared to mine. Then, somehow I looked up to realize that Madison was in a green shirt.
Now, I have my youngest, Carter, in that TNT shirt for the last year before moving up to youth with Madison and Patrick.

I still can't believe that Madison and Patrick are in youth. Next year I will have three children in youth instead of three children in Awanas. I knew it was going to happen fast....I have been told that from the day that I started having kids. I know it from watching my sisters with their older children, but it still surprised me. I do look forward to becoming involved in youth with them. I want to enjoy every minute of it because I know that it too will come and go so quickly!!!