Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Spring Break, 2nd Half

We had a great week. We visited Cassidy in Pittsburgh, we went to the dog park (again and again!), we hung out as a family, we saw my parents and grandmom both in Pittsburgh and for Easter. It was a (mostly) relaxing, family-oriented break, and it was great.

The kids are ready for summer break.

I am not.

Pittsburgh, here we come!

Eating before the show

The AMAZING dancer!!! (and Flat Stanley - he joined us for many events)

Declared the "best breakfast ever" by Tate, who got platefuls of breakfast food

Cartwheeling through Point Park

Very cold water

Yes, that was for one night.

Lots of tunnels, which we now know freak Smith out.

Cold soda room in Sheetz. It's always a party with us.

Office time

Making new friends

Domo was attacking the soccer ball - when he couldn't get that, he went straight for the ankles.

Tate wrapping up his leg. He's a good sport.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Spring Break, halfway point

So far, so good! We've had 80+ degrees down to 30 degrees, all in 2 days. Soccer was great, dog park is a great adventure for the pups, hiking was such fun. 

We are headed to Pittsburgh Thursday/Friday, so today is a clean-the-house-and-pack day. Work has been busy, and I have neglected the house in a big way. Time to fix that.

Dog days of Spring

Possibly my favorite picture of Domo. My goodness.

Blueberry muffins, aka soccer food

Tate's soccer game (they ROCKED it - what a fun game to watch, all the passing, and setups)

Dog park - Domo was in HEAVAN! Spud was better than he had been, he explored a bit away from us. Dogs had a blast.

Smith's game in WVA - HOT day, 82 degrees! We all got a little color.

Billy Goat Trail. Great but tough hike.

Heart rock (hi Papa!)

Great Falls, MD

Tate in a hole

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Catching up

St. Patrick's Day SNOW AGAIN:

Lucky the Leprechaun visited us and messed up our kitchen

Tate's cool Leprechaun trap, although it wasn't really a trap. She wanted him to stay and hang out.

Her note to Lucky

Tate made us all chocolate and marshmallow treats plus fresh squeezed orange juice with sugar and lemon juice. Wow were they tart!

More snow shots

Cuteness of the Dome

5k race that a good chunk of Smith's team participated in - in fact, one of our boys came in second place overall, and 1st in his age group! This is Smith with Uncle Brett

And crossing the finish line

Selling gold shoelaces for Team Mathias, a friend's son who has osteosarcoma. We are Lacing up our County - this is Jillian and me, "The Jill's - We're Easy to Know."

Some feet, laced up

Tate's party at the roller skating rink

Great group of kids

More soon with some more regularity! SPRING is here, and I'm sitting here on my sofa with the door wide open, the dogs lazing about in the sun on the porch, and I am happy. I've needed this!!

Friday, April 4, 2014

Remembering a Life

I went to a funeral yesterday, of Smith's preschool teacher. She was his first teacher, teaching the "2s". It was at a cooperative nursery school, so we parents became very close with the teachers, staff, and other children that were in "our" care on a regular basis.

Wendie was a good woman. She was one of those teachers that make you feel like your child is her favorite, that your child is the reason she got up in the morning to teach. She knew your child.

Smith, his 3rd birthday, and those are Wendie's legs. Don't have any digital pics of her!

Funny, I learned yesterday that she was like that with every child and adult and everyone in between. I'm not surprised.

The ceremony was beautiful - at a gorgeous synagogue, my first Jewish funeral service. I think I've been to most kinds at this point - Catholic, Methodist, non-denominational, non-religious, Episcopalian. The thing I liked the best was how inclusive this was - after the woman in charge (Rabbi-ett?) spoke, the family got up and said a few words - the husband, her two 20s aged children - then she opened the floor to anyone that had something they wanted to share about Wendie.

We sat and heard all the beauty and joy and love and friendship and support one human gave to so many others. How do you measure one's worth? Not one person spoke of the money she had or the the trips she took - but the way she knew each preschool child she taught for 20 years, or the way she would sit and listen to a friend, buy the special something someone loved from a yard sale, really hear what her children said as they went through normal growing up struggles. She was present in her life, active in her own script, joyful in her own way. She lived the life she had.

Age gives us experience. Hearing the beauty of a life well lived means something different to me now than it did, say, 10 years ago. Or, more accurately, 13 years ago, before the birth of my children. I couldn't help but think what people would say about me at my passing - what would my children remember? My husband? All the other people I've been around in life? Am I being true to who I am?

Wendie, to me lately, was an email once a month or so. I have fond memories of her and my time spent with her. I am glad I knew her.