Monday, November 24, 2014

Teeth and the passing of time

When Hannah's teeth just started growing in, we found it kind of amusing, and more than a little cute, her gap between her front teeth.

And over time it just became a part of who Hannah was.

But now, a corner has been turned.

To say that I am a bit melancholy over the change would be putting it mildly.

Just another reminder of how fleeting the years are.

They may be crazy, frustrating, exhausting, but those years are only here for a limited time.

Guess we'll see how this second set grows in...

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

To weep, to rejoice

Rejoice with those who rejoice; 
weep with those who weep. 
Romans 12:15

If you have followed along with these Romans 12 posts this past year, you may recall how each month, despite the fact that these verses were designated for each month way back on January 1st, seem to always have a correlation with something going on in that month for me.

So, you can imagine my anxiety as November neared closer, knowing that the verse was "weep with those that weep."

What did this mean?  What was going to be the tragedy that led to weeping?  

Notice how I jumped right to the pessimistic side?  I didn't wonder with whom I was going to rejoice...hmmmm.

Well, November 3rd my dear Grandpa Herb passed away.

There was much weeping.

But so much more rejoicing.  We have hope that we will see him again someday!

What is our initial reactions when we hear of some tragedy in another family?

"Whew.  It's not me."

"That must be hard....moving on."

"Who can I go tell this news to!  I must pass on this gossip prayer request!"

And how about when you hear of great news happening to another?

"Wish it was me."

"Why do they always seem to have it good."

"Who can I go tell who will commiserate with me?"

"Well, I've got (fill in the blank) and they don't."

Ouch.  I'm sure there are countless other things that have popped in our heads.  

But what does God call us to?

To weep with those that weep.  Empathy.  To feel their pain with them.  To help ease the burden.

To rejoice with those that rejoice.  To be genuinely thrilled for the other's fortune.

Because, don't we find it true in our own lives?

When we can share our weeping, our burden feels lighter?

When we share our good news, the joy is increased?
We were made for community, for fellowship, for relationship.  And true authentic relationships share in each others weeping and joys.

May we all look for ways relieve the burden of one who weeps, 
and to truly rejoice with one that are rejoices.

Friday, November 7, 2014

October Lookback

Well, I've already sung the praises of October.  And, while I could elaborate some more on how much I enjoy this glorious month of Autumn, I'll spare your the redundancy.

Instead, I'll show a sting of pictures to help highlight our month.

Wrapping up the Fall Ball season

Celebrating Birthdays

A trip to see my sis and her adorable children

Running for those who can't

Lots of raking, and lots more jumping, in the leaves

A celebration of Grandparents

And just relishing in all the wonderful things that comes with fall.

Once again, October did not disappoint.

Dancing in the morning sunbeams

 A suprise: Grandpa showing up for the final game of the season!

 Cannot believe how grown up he is!

 Maddie wanted a picture with the 'winners'

 Birthdays!  I don't need to say how many years....

 Seriously just want to snuggle these two

Could just snuggle this one too, if she would let me!

 So glad to, once again, run in support of the Largent family!

Oh, and did I mention that Paul was just 8 minutes short of qualifying for BOSTON?!

That's exactly how I feel about it, too. 

 Grandparents Day at the kids' school.  
Hannah had one line in the program and she delivered beautifully!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Grandpa Herb

I've hesitated on what to write here, because I don't want to reduce my grandpa to just a few heart felt words on a page.

He was so much more than that.

But I feel like something needs to be said.

Grandpa Herb
taught me the importance of all things dairy
the value of hard work
the treasure of knowing your heritage 
and the value of your faith.

Husband, Dad, Foster dad, Adoptive dad, Grandpa, Spiritual Leader, Prayer Warrior, Dairy Farmer, Brother, Son.. the list goes on.

But most important, he is no longer constrained by the shackles of his human body.

His marriage to my grandma was something to be admired.  Many years ago when I learned they had fallen in love way back in the highschool and that they had been together in this life more than they had been apart, I hoped I could have something as wonderful as that.

They would have been married 65 years on Thursday.

I loved to follow his around on the dairy farm, see him work.  He sacrificed so many luxuries to keep the farm working, keep the cows milked, keep the family fed.

Grandpa could sit for hours and tell you the history of our family.  He had a wonderful memory for dates and names.  I wonder how many people he led on the "cemetery tour," taking them around to all the gravestone of past relatives?

Tonight I sit and have a bowl of buttered stir-crazy popcorn in memory of him.  He would always have a bowl of it ready for us, no matter how late we rolled in from our trek from Ohio.

Tonight I weep.  Not for Grandpa. 

For Grandma.  Because she must carry on without him.  She must continue on with the suffering of this life when I know she desires to be free like Grandpa now is.

I weep for the fact that there is even death in the first place.  Why sin has it's place in this world.  Why we all have to grow up and old and say good-bye.

But I have hope.  I know I will get to see Grandpa again.

And maybe he can introduce me to all those relatives he told me so much about.