My younger son called me on “Tango” over the weekend (it’s like Skype) so that I could “see and hear” my beautiful two and a half month old granddaughter. Maggie makes my heart sing! Maggie is healthy and happy. Maggie is beautiful! Thankfully, her Dad has a wonderful promotion that allows her Mom to be a “stay-at-home-mom” with Maggie. True, it meant leaving their beloved Chicago for Dallas, but they are blooming there. We are so blessed and I am thankful.
If you were around me very long and asked me about my family, first I would happily fill you in on all the details about them. I’m blessed with three amazing children – two sons and one daughter and nine incredible grandchildren. THEN, I would probably whine a bit…well, okay, I might even tear up and whine a lot…when I told you that they’re scattered – many miles from me and from each other. (My younger son keeps reminding me that I gave them “roots and wings”). With my children scattered and family in the South, it means that I fly frequently; but with many months between visits, it isn’t enough. Not nearly enough. But I am thankful. I am so thankful for healthy, happy children and grandchildren…every single one of them. I am thankful for all of my family and friends in the South.
Each morning, I pour myself a cup of coffee and take in the view of the foothills of the Cascades across the valley while I enjoy it. Every single morning is new and different. Some mornings, there is a bank of fog so deep that I can barely see the first line of Doug fir on this 58-acre conifer tree farm. Then, the fog settles in between the hills in the valley below and it looks like a big lake. Some mornings, the sun is shining so brightly that it seems I can see forever. I am thankful for the farm and my polar opposite, my macho logger tree farmer husband. I am thankful for the livestock that goes along with having this farm: two kittens, eleven chickens and three sweet Boer goats.
To be honest, this Thanksgiving is a difficult one. This has been a season of great loss and sadness. I am working at being thankful. I want to be thankful that my Father God, in His infinite wisdom and mercy, protected my sister by taking her home to Heaven when He did. As a nurse, I’ve seen what the end stages of ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease) looks like. I thank God she didn’t have to go through that. I’m trying hard to imagine life on this earth without her in it. It isn’t easy. The tears come and then I remember – I will see her again. Four sisters…two now in Heaven…but we will all see each other again. I am thankful. I am thankful for our parents and the sweet, rich heritage they gave my sisters and me.
These are two of my favorite photos of my sister. In the photo above, we were boating on Grenada Lake. I must have said “hey, Sis!”. She glanced around and I snapped the photo with my little Kodak Instamatic. It was August 1961. She was 31 and I was almost 16. She was beautiful even when she was boating! The photo below was taken in the late eighties at Mama’s 4th of July birthday party at my sister Dot’s house. Gerry was about 58 in this photo.
I wish each and every one of you a Happy Thanksgiving filled with the joy of making memories!