Monday, February 2, 2015

Without her...

Without her, life is very different.  
A year ago today was the last day of mama's life.  It had been a long, long eight days.   Mama was completely unresponsive all those days as we sat with her or in her living room.  We talked, reminisced about our family life.  

She was unresponsive except for a brief moment in time when her caregiver came in and.....
Angela stood over her and talked to her.  Mama started making noise like she was trying to say something, but not like she was actually conscious.  That was an emotional moment.  

After she died, I wrote this post which talks about how I and perhaps my brothers and sisters felt at the time of her death.

Now?  A year later?  My head is so happy that she is in heaven with Jesus and daddy and all her brothers and sisters.  My heart misses her in many ways.  I miss her voice, her laughter, her quick wit.  I sometimes stop and think I haven't called her today or I need to go over to see her and then I remember.  

I'm thankful the memories we have of our parents are good memories.  

The memory of the righteous is a blessing.....Proverbs 10:7

A little added note.......Mama loved the Superhero and the Superhero loved mama, but he's not one to say a whole lot.  He came to see mama one of the nights shortly before she died.  I think he may have been shocked at how unresponsive she was, but he started talking (remember he's a man of very few words!) and he thanked mama for me!  I can't remember what else he said because I was sobbing by that time.  I can remember one of my BIL's saying.......thanks Russell, now what will the rest of us say?  

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Goodbye 2014.......

I really can't say I'm sorry to see you go, it's been a hard year!

I'm counting on 2015 to be a great year!  
But before I say goodbye, I just have to post about Christmas. 

It was a quiet Christmas Eve and morning at our house.  We went to Christmas Eve service at church then had a light supper at my MIL's.....then home to bed.

Our Christmas morning tradition continued with the Superhero cooking a huge breakfast.  This year our crowd was slim.  The youngest flew to Minnesota, and three sets of children and grandchildren live far away.  That left us, MIL, son David and his wife Arwen and son Jordan and our nephew.  We managed to put away homemade hashbrowns, sausage, bacon and pancakes!  

This is after breakfast because I forgot to take pictures during the cooking!  

MIL and nephew

Then the present opening started.....
Grandson, Jordan

David and Arwen

After all the gifts were opened
everyone left and the Superhero took a much deserved rest.

Later in the day, we all met at my brother's home for our annual Christmas dinner.  We all take our special holiday dishes and there is so much food!

Even though five of the six of us were at Christmas dinner at my brother's, it was a relatively small crowd.  Here is just a little sampling of our afternoon.
Grandson, Jordan with my sisters

BIL Dick saying a big hello

Sister, Cathy and BIL Dick.....look at that hair!  It's backkkkkk.........

The Superhero and me

Son David and my brother, Tommy.....our gracious host every Christmas

DIL Arwen, David and brother Tommy

Niece Joneida and nephew Dickie

Four of my great nieces

My niece Jennie and her sister 

BIL Mike and sister Debbie

Nephew John and niece Amy

Three sisters......we try to get this picture at every get together

Two great nieces

My MIL and my brother's MIL

Since I didn't put a tree up, I thought it would be nice to get a picture of my brother's tree.  

My sister, Cathy, brother, Tommy and cousins Claire and Ellen

SIL Lois (the other half of the host team) and her granddaughter, Lauren.......who just became engaged!  

The youngest generation got the clean up job this year

Few of the guys 

Brother Michael

SIL Pam and her sister

We had a wonderful afternoon.  There was a little bit of bittersweetness during the day missing mama and BIL Mike's mama this year.  
But we couldn't be too sad when we stopped to realize they were celebrating with the REASON for the season!

I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas and that 2015 will be the best year ever for us all!

So long 2014......

Monday, December 15, 2014

Oh what fun it is.....

Since we have been empty nesters, the Superhero and I have had fun taking our own pictures and putting them on Christmas cards.  Our children are scattered around the country and we knew we would never be able to get pictures of us all together.  

We try to think of a different place to take them each year and this year decided to take them in front of a roaring fire with our mantle decorated.....

We tried standing......
 Nope!  Odd angle, not to mention you can't even see the mantle....

Sitting on the floor......Nope!  Uncomfortable and we look strained.

I get the bright idea of getting our little Rubbermaid stools to sit on and those weren't too bad until I realized that we had the old, ragged sticker still on the front of one! 


Awkward and we are getting very frustrated!

The Superhero thinks he's funny and takes a picture while I'm getting up to check the camera. I knew I shouldn't have given him the remote!  And by the way, the ONLY picture he really smiled in.....because he was amused! 

Right before we had to call a marriage counselor in to help, we got one that wasn't too bad, even though the roaring fire was nowhere to be seen!

So to all our friends, near and far, 
Merry Christmas and may Jesus be close to your hearts this season! 

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Almost Christmas?

Fourteen days until Christmas???  This has been the longest/shortest year in my memory.  The tree above is not my Christmas tree because I'm not putting a tree up this year!  Yep, that's was the most freeing decision.  People said to me.....oh, it's so relaxing to sit and look at the tree......I say, no when I look at the tree I I have to take all this stuff down in a few weeks!  
I decorated the mantle and my dining room table and put out a few other Christmas decorations, but I was just not up to tackling a tree this year.  
Also, we will not have any little children here this year.  

Then there is gift buying.  I'm not one of those who has it all done in June and can enjoy the season with no stress.  Truth is, I'm just not a good gift giver.  I like to give gifts, but I have no idea what to give!  Kind of like cooking.......if someone would give me a menu at the beginning of the week, I would gladly cook.  But if I have to think of what to cook OR buy, then it's a major chore.

However!  As much as I don't like buying gifts, I love sending cards and have so enjoyed these last few years sending cards to many of my blog friends.  Even though I haven't posted much or read many blogs in these last few months, I would love to send you a Christmas card, so if you want me your address!  

In looking through boxes that were packed from mama's apartment, I've come across her suitcase (yes, she kept her ornaments in a large suitcase) with ornaments.  She was so good about labeling her ornaments with who gave them and what year. Most of the ornaments had been divided among us all when we cleaned out mama's apartment.  

This was mama's Nativity set.  Every year, she had it on her coffee table and would let all the children play with it and she would explain the story of Christ's birth as they played.  

One year in the 80's, during my ceramic making phase, I made angels for mama's tree.  Plain angels for her children and their spouses and angels with stars on their heads for the grandchildren.  Below are a few of them so you can get the idea.  Of course, when I left that particular phase, our family didn't stop having their are many grandchildren and great grandchildren with no angel ornaments. 

We will all miss mama this year as we gather to celebrate Christmas, but know she is celebrating with the Reason for the season!

Stay tuned for our Christmas card picture taking adventure!