car ride | a short story

A week ago Thursday, we drove to Colorado for an extended weekend.  It would be our only family vacation this year and it would be a memorable one.  But more on that later. Right now I want to talk about the drive out there.

Years ago, before children, this is how it went:

Paul, I need to stop and use the restroom.  But you just went.  I know, but I’m pregnant, remember!

With small children:

How much further?  I have to go potty!  Stop kicking your sister!  Oh, great!  Now the baby needs to nurse.  What did I just tell you?!  If you ask me one more time how much further, so help me….  Okay, I know you are all tired of being in the car so why don’t I come back and read a story.  Are you ready for another video?  Only two more Veggie Tales and we will be there!

With adolescent children:

Well, a little bit of everything.  Loving, sleeping, arguing, potty stops.  No more Veggie Tales and no more reading stories 😦

Now, with three adult children and one teenager:

Little to no arguing.  A lot of silly laughter.  Sleeping.  Ear buds.  Coffee stops.  Reminiscing over past vacations.  Can we stop?  I have to use the restroom again.

As much as I miss car rides with littles (for real!), I am enjoying conversation, coffee, memories and no arguing with the big version.   One thing has never changed and that is that my purse is still the catch all on every trip and we are not fans of fast food.

car ride short story

 

dreamy | lifestyle photographer

My daughter and I went out to shoot one night last week.  It was one of the most beautiful evenings.  There was a slight breeze and the clouds were covering the blaring sun.  Just a couple of nights prior she and I took a drive out on some of the dirt roads in search of a cool barn.  I was in the mood to shoot a barn.  We found none.  But what we did find were some very dreamy locations.  So we returned to those spots on this night.

I am a sucker for fields of yellow wildflowers and forest/wooded areas.  I have to admit, I was a bit jealous that it was my daughter being photographed out in the yellow flowers and not me.  I did tell her that my turn is next.  Hopefully before the flowers die.

The sole purpose of this photo shoot was because E.Beth is very interested in photography and wanted some shots for her website.  I am always so proud when my children have interests in or pursue things that are part of me.  Of course, any excuse for me to take pictures of my babies is a worthy excuse.

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college grad! | documentary photographer

I always knew she had the ability to communicate.  She has been doing it since she was a baby.  She went from babble to big words by the age of three.  Using words that most adults didn’t know and using them in the correct context.  So a Communication Studies Degree seemed like the perfect fit in my mind.  Until I found out it really had nothing at all to do with talking.  What do I know?  Obviously not a whole lot.  Maybe I should have gone to college after all.  🙂

When Bekah walked out our door four years ago with a car loaded down with everything that belonged in our home and her bedroom, I thought my heart had left my chest, never to return. Thankfully, I was wrong.  Yes, my heart broke, but it was also very full of pride and joy with anticipation of what the next four years would bring for my baby girl.  With three others still at home I knew that as quickly as the years had flown by for her, they would do the same for the others.

So many thoughts swirling around in my head and aching heart.  And now, here we are, four years later.  I survived, she survived and the rest of the family survived.   Now she is off to big adventures and a life filled with whatever God has planned for her.

We are so very proud of the beautiful, young woman she has become and so grateful to her Father for bringing her this far and that she is willing to follow Him no matter the cost.

“God always gives His best to those who leave the choice with Him.” -Jim Elliot

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doggy wash | a short story

After playing with her puppy friend, Laci, we went straight to the doggy wash. Whenever she has a play date with her brother or a friend, she is always a slobbery mess and so are they.  So we try to plan play dates around bath time for both parties.

Usually, I put her in our bathtub and get on my knees during the entire process.  When I am done I’m wet and my back is aching.  Laci’s people parents told me that they take her to the doggy wash and they love it.  So I decided to try it this time.  What did I have to lose?  Absolutely nothing!

I loved it!  Ruby, not so much.  The room was scary.  The ramp up to the tub was scary. The tub was scary.  The sprayer was scary.  Walking back down the ramp was scary.  She was just a nervous wreck!  But guess what?  That is her new bath place.  Because I loved it so much, it was easy on my back, no mess for me to clean afterward and… I’m the mommy and I say so!  She’ll get used to it and thank me in the end.  I’m just sure of it!

short story 3

chalk | documentary photographer

These two little sweet peas take after their mama.  They have been doing sidewalk chalk with her since birth and I think they might end up being great chalk artists in the future.  😉

When they were over at my house they saw the new chalkboard wall and asked if they could draw on it.  Of course, I said they could.  I’m the fun aunt after all.  Only one rule. They could not draw on my menu or tree.  They were totally fine with that and had such a great time drawing, erasing, drawing some more and just being silly.  There was some serious artistry going on here.

I love these two little monkeys!

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our big, fat, greek easter | documentary photographer

This was a year of firsts.  The first year my kiddos almost didn’t get Easter baskets.  I rescued that at the last minute.  The first year in 20 that we didn’t die eggs.  No reason. We just didn’t.  The first year that we went to someone else’s house besides family.  The first ever Greek meal/Greek Easter meal.   The first Easter in our new house.  And this one is my saddest.  The first year since having children that I forgot to take a family picture after church.  😦

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Usually, we have friends over for Easter.  But this year, we were invited over by a very dear friend of ours.  More like family really.  She’s Greek.  I think our boring American Easter meals bore her.   😉

So she made us a very nice, Greek meal.  It was delicious!  I was a little leery about trying the lamb because I was just sure I would be able to hear its baby bleats.  I could hear it no more than the pig oinking from the ham.  I have issues, I know this.  Oh, and I’m not a vegetarian.  I just like lamby’s.  They are cute and wooly and remind me of my sweet puppy.  Anyway, I digress.

As always, she set a beautiful table!  When I am in need of something for my table settings, I call her.  She has it all!  And I have to admit, it was nice this year to enjoy the labors of someone else.  All that was required of me was my homemade bread.  Easy cleanup when we got home!

The kids are almost too big for baskets.  But I have a feeling that until grand babies come, they will still get them.  I even threw in a few little fun items for a giggle.  What 19 and 21 year old girl doesn’t want her own tiny baby doll?  And silly putty for the boys!  Why not?

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jumping | a short story

He has had eight track meets this season.  I have made it to two.  Between temps and schedules, I was just unable to make the others.  So, when I do make it, I try to take as many pictures as possible.  Mainly for myself, but also because he wants to see his form and where he needs work.  Always working hard, that boy.

track story