Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Catching up to now

This blogpost will bring me up to date. There are lot of pictures in it. Meet you at the bottom.



Calvin got a fever so we had some ER action. It only took 2 hours instead of 5 - hooray! Not to worry, he was his happy self the next day. 

I met my friend, Nilma, for lunch in Tulsa. I have known her since 1996!

I taught my brother-in-law, Alex, how to play the expansions of Cities and Knights and Seafarers. He was a fan!

Tyler and his nephew, Spencer.




Brad and Tyler. We met up with them in Broken Arrow.

Tyler ran the running portion of a tri-athalon with his sister, Tisha. 


Tyler & Tisha

Troy and Tyler with Maleiah, Maddie, and Macie.


Troy, Tyler, Amy, and Patrick.

Tyler, Melanie, & Travis

Tyler, Richard, Travis

Keith, Iryna, & Calvin

Keith pushing the wagon.

I love this picture of Iryna and me.


Tyler holding Florence on her blessing day.





Tyler and my father.

 

My mom baking cookies for the grandchildren. And maybe the adults. 


My brother, Coulter, taught me to make a recipe from the DR: La Bandera (The Flag). It is gluten free and delicioso! He learned it on his mission.


Que Rico!


Tyler and Alex discussing their missions to Taiwan - they served in the same mission!


We met Mamaw, Opa, and Aunt Heather at POPS for lunch. Such a fun place.

Uncle Tyler getting to know Estelle!


Iryna and Iliana

Opa and Calvin


We hit some cold temperatures in OK for July. Brrr!

Uncle Tyler working his magic with Florence. Look at that smile.

Tyler and my mom.


Me, my niece, Rylee, and my SIL, Shelbee





Aurora and my sister, Rachel


Richard and Tyler playing some Stratego.








Another trip to Kiddie Park!









I had three days in Dayton before moving to DC. I met my good friend, Stefanie, for dinner at the Cheesecake Factory and a pedicure! So fun!



I met Belen for lunch to celebrate her birthday!

We went to visit some friends and had a cookout. Such fun! Anna was also able to attend the Columbus Temple with the youth group from Ohio. She had a wonderful time.


Look! It's Calvin in Hobbes!

We went to see Valerie and her family for a few hours one day. This is her adorable son, Thomas!




We received respite care while in Ohio and my kids adored Miss Tracy! She was so good to them and we are already missing her.





Packing up to head to DC.


Stopping for a sit down dinner. When we asked for the check, we were told that another customer had paid (anonymously) for our whole dinner. I am humbled by the kindness of others.

Anna went from this position...

to this!

After a long two days in the car, we are finally HOME! And we even have a nice warm pool ready to go.

This is a self portrait of Silas. Pretty accurate, I'd say.

I got to meet up with my good friend, Amie, here locally! We keep following each other across the US! First FL, then OH, and now DC. I love it!

Anna and Morgan - been friends for three posts, too!

Now for the reality of the summer. It has been wonderful, as you can see from all the pictures. We had lots of quality time with family and friends. My children saw their cousins and created fun memories with them. I spent a lot of time with my mom - loved it! - and with my siblings, who I rarely see since we live so far from home. I have loved all of that. It has also been incredibly difficult and emotionally draining. Being a single parent for 8 weeks with 5 kids - and dealing with all of their struggles in moving away from our home in Ohio and not having a home base or even knowing which house we would live in - and my trying to eat gluten-free in other peoples' homes, and then succumbing to eating whatever just to keep my sanity. 

I adopted a Dr Pepper a day policy - sometimes even two. I went into survival mode and dreamt of being reunited with Tyler again. We were originally assigned to Edwards, CA, but then Edwards rejected us, based on our needs, and it took S E V E N W E E K S to cancel those orders. Eeek! And then, when it finally was cancelled, it took a couple more weeks to get orders in place and THEN Tyler came out to join me in OK. I was so grateful to have Tyler with me, at last. His goal was to help me recover from the stress I had felt. The last two days before Tyler arrived, I would lay in bed and sob. It got really bad. One day I was crying, and Silas asked me why I was crying. Calvin replied: It's because of US! I know that I didn't handle things very well, especially towards the end, and my extended family saw me scream much more than I would like - but I did survive and so did my children. 

Once Tyler arrived, he let me sleep in and he cared for the kids. Then we would stay up and play with my siblings. After two days of this schedule, Tyler wasn't getting enough sleep and he wasn't doing well. This is how our trek back to Ohio began and continued into our getting to DC. We finally decided upon a house in DC and my good friend, Amie, came to check it out for me. She's the best! We decided we would get it and moved in last Friday. Since then, we have been unpacking a lot of boxes and trying to get the house organized. I never did recover from the chaos of the summer and now everywhere I look - I see a MESS. It is so hard! I am trying to be positive, trying to focus on the blessings, but I just want to cry. I know that in a week or two, things will be more organized and I try to smile. Some days it doesn't happen. Today wasn't a good day. But I did receive this:



My awesome friend, Shellie, sent me a package of fun bubble bath to help me relax. I seriously have the best friends and the best family. I know that in time I will (hopefully) return to the way I usually am - a positive person. I am grateful that my family is patient with me until then and for those friends and family who encourage me and love me right now.