Thursday, October 17, 2013

Perspective after another year

It's been over a year since I last wrote in my blog. While not an every week (or every day) blogger I had made numerous posts since I began the blog after Ty was born in 2007. Most of my early posts were about him, but then I branched out to include other areas of interest.

After Lynette's death, I used my blog as a venue for sharing my healing (and not healing) moments as well as family news. Then the last part of 2012 as we were trying to sell our home, find another home, sell the cabin and get ready for winter, I just stopped writing in my blog. I have sent social shout outs via Facebook and Instagram, but no blogging.

Cousin Dorothy from the United Kingdom, is one of the reasons I'm writing again. When she mentioned in an e-mail message that she hadn't seen a blog posting from me in a while (actually a very long while), I revisited Nana Shanna's Corner and re-read my last post. Two things immediately struck me.

  1. A WHOLE lot has happened in our family and extended family since I last wrote.
  2. I'm in a much better place in my emotional healing now than I was then.
Item #2 was more of a surprise to me. I realize that we shouldn't necessarily measure our healing using time as the yardstick, but it may be somewhat our natual inclination to do so. At least my natural inclination to do so anyway. So in October 2012 when I wrote my last post I felt that I was adjusting to life without Lynette well for the 1st year after her death. "Well" is the operative word, isn't it?

Now after another year, I can say that I'm not in as "dark" of a place as I was then. That year of firsts without her was very hard (which is a huge understatement). The pain of not having her in my life right now is/was/probably always will be difficult for me. I can and may always vividly recall those awful moments when I found out about her death and then subsequently the cause of it-alcohol poisoning due to her chronic use and abuse of alcohol. But and this is a very big perspective IS healthier now. I've recalled that I have been able, this past year, to spontaneously laugh and enjoy my life and interactions with others again. It has been a gradual process and if I didn't have my previous writings I don't know if I would have been able to quantify it. If I were to put it using the scientific method process is probably the closest correct term that applies.

In future posts I will do a bit of a retrospective of "The Lost Year" in review for myself and those who may choose to visit my blog.

Thanks Cousin Dorothy!


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

September again

Carynn and I drove to central Washington to spend the weekend of September 14-16. Melinda and Michael spent some time together over the weekend while I was gone. Bret, Laura and Ethan were in Utah, Landan in the Middle East, Jamie and Ty in the Spokane Valley. All of us reflected, each in our own way, the year that has come and gone since we got the terrible news of Lynette's death.

It was good to visit family. Carynn and I did a spa night for my mom on September 14 and then went to the cemetery on the 15th. We each had some private moments at Lynette's grave and left flowers for her and Lindsay. We spent that afternoon with my 9 year old niece Kloey. We had a good time and it helped to lighten our hearts as Kloey got to choose our activities which included lunch at an all you can eat buffet. We also celebrated my nephew Colton's birthday (a few days early) with pizza and cookies and cream ice cream. Later we saw a movie. It was good to see Mom, Erin, Karra and their families.
Sunday morning we detoured back to the cemetery-where it was a lot quieter than it had been the day before. (A graveside service was going on not too far from Lynette's grave on Saturday.) A yellow butterfly flitted by both times we were there. We had an uneventful trip home.

I'm relieved that the year of "firsts" without Lynette is done. You don't stop grieving just because a year's gone by though, do you? I will count my many blessings and I will choose to remember Lynette as she is in the above picture. NS

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Ode to August

You came so quickly and with your coming
Brought birthdays and sunshine, trips to the lake, camp;
Oh, and cleaning, always cleaning the house that's for sale.
Tears are often still close to the surface.
There were unexpected sunflowers too.
Now it is September again. Healing takes time.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Christmas in July

This year we finally were able to schedule a family vacation where we could all be together. A few weeks before vacation a light bulb went off in my head that we should do Christmas in July since Landan won't be able to be home for Christmas (again) and Bret, Laura and Ethan will not be able to travel as he won't be able to take time off during the holidays with his new job. Michael and the children were great with the idea so Christmas in July was born. Here are some pictures.
The stockings were hung on the window sill with care. Sunflowers on the table were courtesy of Melinda and Landan as a visible reminder of Lynette. Flower arranging and place mat placement courtesy of Carynn.

Carynn, Bret and Melinda did a bit of the "Crazy Christmas Dancing" that they (and Lynette) are known for to the old Amy Grant Christmas tape that we've used for years. Yes, I know they could have pulled it up from the internet, but since I brought it, why not use it, right? We love you Lynette and miss you so much. You were with us in spirit.
We used Lynette's ornaments to decorate the tree (complete with lights) that I had brought from home.
Carynn's turn to put the angel on the top.


"Christmas morning" it was time to open the presents (or as Lynette would say-prizes) and check out what was in the stockings. A smiling Landan and Melinda open their gifts. (Check out the plate on the coffee table-Yes, we had our traditional ham, potato rolls and orange juice too!)
I snapped the picture below and just about everyone in it is (or seems to be) in motion. That's what our time together was- motion and emotion.

More on our vacation in another post.

 Merry Christmas in July to all!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Catching Up With Life

It's been a while since I've posted.

To recap what's been going on in my life/our lives since my last post:

April  We made our way home via Salt Lake City (and our Miller Trio). We really enjoyed the new City Creek Mall and ate at the very yummy Cheesecake Factory. Ethan loved it too!
     We also stopped by some bird refuges and sanctuaries. We saw some darling baby birds. One duck like bird species-grebes- let their chicks hitch rides on their backs. They are well camouflaged so they're kind of hard to spot unless you look for a grebe that isn't diving and looking for food. That would be the one with the chicks on its back.
Strolling and rolling (Ethan, that is) at City Creek Mall

Papa with Ethan at the City Creek Mall

Ethan enjoyed The Cheesecake Factory too!


My mom turned 80 in May. I surprised her by
showing up for her birthday!
While in the Yakima area I stopped by the
cemetery and left flowers for Lindsay
and Lynette. I cried.

While Carynn and Jamie were out of town we took care of Ty. We had a wonderful time and one of the things that we did was to attend his pre-school graduation. The theme was pirates. Carynn had rounded up a cute costume for their little pirate, including a hook. 

Ty, far right on the first row, with this year's pre-school class. 

                               Also in May Michael and I celebrated our 38th wedding anniversary.

Can you see our house on top of the hill?

We're selling our Liberty Lake home. We have had 2 showings  so far;
one in late May, one in June.


Michael celebrated his 59th birthday. Here he is at Carynn and Jamie's with Ty, his Dad (who's in town for the summer) and one of his gifts. Yes, that is a watermelon. :)

You can fill in the blanks for a lot of the rest. We are encouraged that Michael's health seems to be on the upswing. We are still grieving the loss of our Lynette. We still laugh, smile, and live.

Here's to Summer!


Sunday, April 15, 2012

Seven Months - Finding Happiness

Michael has been so wonderful over the years taking pictures of the children. He wanted to make sure that there would be plenty of documentation of their lives. One of the shots he often has them do is what I call the "looking toward heaven" pose. You see that in the two pictures shown here of Lynette.

So my dearest Lynette, I'm looking toward heaven and remembering you today as it's been seven months since you left us behind. At times I forget and think about calling you about some little thing and then I remember that you can't get my calls right now.

I'm working at discovering joy in my journey here. I was reminded about finding happiness by a dear friend who gave us an Easter card with this quote:
Happiness is like
A butterfly which,
When pursued, is always
Beyond our grasp,
But, if you will
Sit down quietly,
May alight upon you.
-Nathaniel Hawthorne

I think I'm getting a little bit better at sitting quietly, if not always literally, figuratively. I am sustained, I am blessed, and sometimes I am also happy.


Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Fun with Carynn, Jamie and Ty - Easter 2012

We were so happy when we had more visitors from up North! Bret, Laura and Ethan came to see us in February. Now it was Carynn, Jamie and Ty's turn! They arrived Wednesday night and we immediately put Jamie to work! Thanks so much for installing the new faucet Jamie. It makes a huge difference!

Thursday afternoon/evening was Girls Night Out and Boys Night In. Carynn and I did a bit of shopping, ate a yummy dinner at Chili's, had a pedicure and then came home. The boys enjoyed grilling steak with some if not all of the trimmings.

Other memorable moments are highlighted below.

Saturday morning we all went to the Ivins City Easter Egg Hunt. It's not much of a hunt really, but still is was so much fun to watch the kids scramble for the eggs. The whole thing including travel time to and from took less than a half and hour. Ty "found" 34 eggs, plus the 2 "starter" eggs they gave him totals 36 eggs! Inside each egg was a Tootsie Roll mini and a little roll of Smarties candy. The master of ceremonies said that there were 12,000 eggs. In less than a minute they were all gone. Thankfully they divided the park into age groups so the little ones weren't with the older kids. Here's some pictures. Adults were able to "help" but they could only point. They couldn't touch the egg. Ty, of course needed little if any help, but Jamie went along to hold the basket.

Then it was time to go to downtown St. George and check out the Art Festival. Even though this is our 4th winter here, Michael and I had never done that. We had a lot of fun and so did Ty and his mom and Dad.
Ty had fun decorating his binoculars. He also used chow mein noodles to make a nest for a peeps chick and her jelly bean "eggs." What a fun idea!

Ty has the best view riding on Papa's shoulders!

This sequence of pictures shows me bravely running through the fountain (right before the center one started up. Whew-I barely made it in time. Then Ty and I together and finally Ty had a ton of fun and hardly got wet at all running through himself.

We had our Easter Feast Saturday evening since Carynn, Jamie and Ty were heading back up to Bret, Laura and Ethan's on Sunday after church. To change things up a bit we ate al fresco. Saturday evening it was gorgeous outside and the ambiance of the fountain, water and sunshine were hart to beat. Cornish game hens ala Carynn were the main course. Afterwards it was time to color the eggs. Ty had fun and of course we made what my kids have always called the "poop" egg. While I may not appreciate it's name, I appreciate the tradition that my 4 started long ago. The "poop" egg is dunked in all of the colors multiple times till it reaches the right shade-whatever the right shade is.

The Easter bunny hid the eggs outside this year since it was so nice. Ty had a fun time finding them. We made sure that we shared the real reason we celebrate Easter with Ty too. It's fun to enjoy the secular part of the season, but just like Christmas, Jesus is the reason for this season too!

Our Savior Lives and we will all live again too!