Time is ticking away here at the W house and I have sorely wanted to get back to this blog. It seems all my ideas - all my best words - come to me as I lie in bed at night. By then I'm already warm and cozy in my cocoon of blankets and have no desire to come downstairs to sit at the computer.
By morning the words are gone.
But it is time. It is time to get the words back. For me. For my kids. It is time to pull myself away from Facebook and get back to this "legacy" and do with it what I'd intended when I first started blogging - writing words for my kids.
For now, here is a brief timeline of what life has thrown at us in the last few months. Some of these events have been like getting a hand full of sparkly party confetti poured over our heads. Others...well, others have been like a body slam that left us breathless, bruised and struggling to regain our footing. Such is life.
As I record the high and low points of life over the last few months, I also record what I hope will be a reminder of what I need to further delve into as the blog comes back to life.
*August - We had the most wonderful of Summer Vacations. Paul, Kayla and I drove 16 hours over two days to North Carolina, where we met Blake and headed to the beach for a week. Kayla has always been a gold star traveler and this trip was no exception. What fun we had traveling from our flat corn fields, through the mountains of West Virginia and, finally, hitting the beaches along the Atlantic Ocean. And seeing my son? For the first time since he left home I saw where he lived and worked. A wonderful trip that literally left me trembling with excitement and thankfulness.
*September - my sweet, outspoken, funny, creative friend Tina passed away suddenly from a heart attack. She left behind a husband and five children. And a small community and school district that will mourn her loss and grieve for her forever. Tina. My bold, loyal friend. She deserves a post all her own.
- Amongst the sadness of watching her friends and classmates bury their mother, and noticing the devastating absence of "Miss Tina" around school; Kayla was busy with float building and dance preparations for her final homecoming season of her high school days. She was named homecoming queen and we couldn't have been happier for her. She is a bright and shiny girl and she got to wear a bright and shiny crown. And, I'll just admit it right here. I was one proud mama.
*October - Senior photo shoot!! Sweet mercy, was that ever a fun day. We chose a photographer whom we have known for years; in fact, I taught her in Sunday school when she was in second grade. She later went on to become a student teacher in Kayla's fifth grade class. Teran can certainly work the magic behind the camera and my daughter certainly made magic happen in front of it. It was a fun day to be sure.
*November - A quiet beginning to our holiday season with a small Thanksgiving dinner at our house.
*December - our first Christmas without our boy at home. We were thrilled to know he was amongst friends, new family and loved ones; and we were determined to bask in thankfulness, not loneliness. And we did. We had a wonderful, quiet Christmas eve with Kayla and her special guy, eating snacks and playing board games. And of course opening gifts. I got a Kindle. That also deserves a post all its own. Because I'm not sure I like it. (yikes)
*January - Our sweet, gentle, loving friend Laura passed away after a shockingly brief battle with leukemia. Laura was everything that is good. She was our kids' only babysitter besides their grandparents. She helped shape them. She had a mature-beyond-her-years love for children from a very early age. She received her diagnosis on the day she delivered her sweet son. The disease and the treatment ravaged her body and robbed that sweet baby of his mommy when he was 6 months old. Laura and her family endured more tragedy in the last three years of her life than any family should see in a lifetime. Laura. Our sweet, gentle, red headed angel. Our lovely friend with a smile that rivals the sun. She deserves a post of her own.
-Blake finally received his box of Christmas gifts which we mailed the first week in December. The boxes that Kayla's school group sent to troops in Afghanistan thankfully arrived to them in a week. Blake's box arrived in North Carolina in five. Even he said those troops deserved a timely Christmas more than he did.
-We bought a beautiful prom dress that Kayla loved so much she was willing to pay half the cost. Actually, we ordered it.
*February - I turned 45 and celebrated my birthday with my sweet friend, J, and her husband (whose birthday is also in February). "Mr. J" is a cancer survivor and as we toasted each other with our complimentary chocolate sundaes, I was overwhelmed and honored to see, right there in front of my face, how amazing another birthday is. Ladies, don't hide from your birthdays. Embrace them. Dance with them. Face them head on with a party hat on your head and a noise maker in your mouth. Dig into your favorite dessert and tell yourself "It's a birthday! It's life!!"
-We took a quick trip to Kayla's college campus. This also deserves a post of its own. But suffice it to say that Paul and I are beyond excited at the path that awaits our girl. We will miss her like we would miss our hearts or our lungs. But it is her time. She is in for the time of her life and seeing her on that campus; watching her blend in and embrace this phase already...well, it is what we have raised her to do.
-We were informed that the beautiful prom dress was not available after all - YIKES - and had to begin the search anew. Things were kept in perspective; however, as this news came at the same time as hundreds of people at my husband's company lost their jobs. We are so fortunate and beyond thankful that Paul's job is still there for us.
A new prom dress was found and purchased. It is a lovely purple and will be quite poofy with the added crinoline.
*March - I was reminded last week that Kayla has nine weeks of high school left. Nine weeks. NINE. WEEKS. I am bracing myself for the hurricane of excitement that is about to hit our home. We will leave next week for a brief spring break and then...then she will perform in the school musical...go on the senior trip...prom (two proms)....summer registration at college...and move-in day. And then we will begin our new chapter in this parenting story.
We will be empty nesters.