March 31, 2012

when hours seem like days...

Yesterday was a long day.
Perhaps that is an understatement.
The surgery lasted two hours past the doctor's prediction and four longer than we hoped for. Oakley came through just fine, with the best news being that his ear bones were intact and were allowed to stay. {thank you, God} He was a trooper, and when I complimented his bravery, he almost smiled and told me I didn't even feel a thing.  

While my sister and her husband waited, and probably watched people come and then go, Gramma and Auntie were the entertainment committee. We toted Chelsea around town in Gramma's lime green bug, with air rushing our faces and our hair blowing wildly. Her chatter made us laugh and grin... and we couldn't help but encourage her love for fashion as we did a few errands.

For a few hours, we lived for her with gusto... and waited on the chirping of text message updates. It was a day of bravery, all around. Holding back the worry-tears can be hard work, and the impromtu prayer session in the shoe department was certainly necessary.

And when it was all said and done, and I was on my way home again... the weight of the day settled over me. Tears rolled, and even as relief was covering me, a sliver of anger danced on through. The whys and the hows and the doubt knocked on my heart and only speaking them aloud would let the banishment begin. The need to let it all go and let forgiveness seep in is right in front of me... but so was this little boy's face.  and the stitches around the back of the ear. and the next surgery he faces. I'll get there.

I thank you for your prayers.
There is certainly comfort in knowing there is a circle of love spinning around you and the ones you love...

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March 28, 2012

{almost} wordless wednesday

See that little red-head? He's my nephew... and he is having ear surgery on Friday.
If you would whisper up a prayer for him, and our family, while we wait, I'd be really grateful. 
Thank you!




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March 26, 2012

the way to still

As the sun sears my skin I can feel the stress evaporate from my soul. The surf rolls up the shore and lulls my heart. Little by little, all that is left is peace. Complete peace. He whispers to my heart be still. And there is nothing to do by obey... as the hours sail on.

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March 20, 2012

the red boots

There was only one pair left on the shelf... red.
They were a size or three too big, but a cowboy needs boots when he's celebrating his birthday.
I knew he would love them, but there was so much I didn't know...

I didn't know he would wear them here and there and everywhere... and that the bit about a cowboy sleeping with his boots on might just be truth.
I didn't know that he would wear them far longer than five. Longer than six. A little of seven.
I didn't know that... the boots were two different sizes. Until he started growing into them, at seven.
I didn't even know that both boots were for the left foot.
But most of all... I didn't know how sad I would feel when I realized they were gone.
I really wish I had stowed them away for a rainy day...
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March 19, 2012

the reason i stayed...

Here, not there.
The plans changed month by month. Still waiting on God's timing... healing still eluding her. So we planned a little get-away, close to home. Sun, sand, a view that made you whoop with joy... and a sunset that was worth the wait. In the golden light, we made memories... laughing and sharing, clicking cameras to solidify the moments.

We choose to savor this slice of life {and maybe a little cheesecake}... because each breath is a moment worth celebrating.
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March 16, 2012

traveling heart

For three weeks I've been following them through Africa... South Africa, Kenya, Tanzania, Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe, checking off each location as the days passed. Once upon a time, those words were half-way across the world, and now? I feel like I could reach out and touch them. Thank you, Mom. I am so excited to hear her stories, knowing that even the same stories will feel different this time, now that I have seen some of it for myself. Most of all I want to hear about the elephant nudging their tent in the wee hours of the morning. And the baby wildebeest. And how it felt to be in the midst of a giraffe herd. Yes, I want to hear it all. And I know she'll be anxious to share it.

And because sharing is nice, I will share a few more pieces of my heart...


Yes, Africa still lives in my heart... and these faces, and the joy I saw in them, are a part of the reason.
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March 15, 2012

there they go

It was never my intention to not go, but here I am. Without them.
All of yesterday, my heart was sinking over the thought of waving goodbye... and my desperate heart schemed the ridiculous. But sense won out... eventually. Taking off after them to New Orleans would be fun, and I would be cheering the loudest as they marched down the street celebrating St. Patrick's Day... but as the afternoon wore on, I could see the sense in staying put.

They boarded the bus with smiling faces, snacks and unnecessary advice tucked away. And saying goodbye, have fun, text me, I love you wasn't quite as hard as I figured.

Of course, I may have been spotted jumping up and down and waving with vigor as the buses left the school {and maybe again as my friend and I raced along side...}

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March 13, 2012

another story...

We are watching the clocks... guessing what Gramma & Grampa are up to right now. I think they are waking up in their tent, getting ready for a game drive. Eric pipes up that he hopes the hyenas haven't gotten them. Cam laughs and says the hyenas are too busy removing the upholstery from the camp chairs. I love how he remembers...

Each morning on the Serengeti, we would emerge from tents and find evidence that the hyenas had been exploring camp in the night. Wash bins turned over, tell-tale foot prints... missing seat cushions and chair backs. Camden loved sitting in the hyena chair... just because he is Cam.


I loved camping in Africa. We fell asleep to the sounds of the Serengeti, tucked into our beds... and awoke to a shout of Jambo, cold air, and a spectacular sunrise. The days were full of adventure, and we returned weary and happy. And one afternoon...

Cam woke me from a nap, and I just slipped into my shoes, worried that taking the time to fasten them would mean a lost chance. I was afraid I would miss my chance to get kind of close... and I was afraid to get too close. But the little bit of fear that rippled through me was the I'm alive kind... the kind that says one more step and then maybe one more. The giraffe travelled the camp and I couldn't help but I follow, peeking through the tents, stalking with my camera. I was mezmerized. Long legs unfolding, neck stretching and the sounds of acacia being chomped away. 

In Africa, I was braver than I have ever been... stretching myself and my heart. And even still, I grow.

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March 05, 2012

safari & son

An afternoon hour... just two of us, waiting for our other two to be home. The sun starting its sinking, washing the world in golden light. The outdoors called to me, and then, a text came in... with a picture of a baby alligator. I called for him to grab his shoes, and we were out the door, on an adventure.

He was in charge of the camera... and the hunt. We turned 'round, scanning the landscape, looking for clues. Just where did Dad take the picture?  And then, with a shout, he found it. The little gator (very little) slipped in off the sand, to join his sibling, just as we came along side.

But there was more adventure... not too far down the path.


(i have a pretty good zoom... and we were at least ten feet away)
  He couldn't resist a walk down the boardwalk and onto the path... and as reported by another visitor, there was the prize of the day. Alligator, six feet.  We wandered back... chatting and laughing and making plans. And my whole heart smiled. Just an hour. One precious hour...

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