Wednesday, October 11, 2017

The Circle of Life...

Hi cyber world, it’s been a while… you have been lost but not forgotten!  I am still here, living life, loving my family, and creating fun things.  I feel blessed that I am at a place in my life that I can do the things I love to do.  I have been in a reflection mode recently, that often happens to me when there are BIG life events, and this year there have been some huge ones! 

        In July my Moms cancer returned (bad news).

 Also in July, my husband retired (good news).  

    September we found out we are going to be grandparents 
for the first time (GREAT news)!

Mom, Aunt Doris, and Madeleine at Mom's 88th birthday celebration!
Don’t they say that things come in threes… well there you go, my three biggies for this year!  It seems that with the good there always come some bad sprinkled in to keep us grounded.  And that is where I find myself today.  Living in the joy of the good news, and the pain and reality of the bad. Just like a few years ago when  Jessy was getting married, I was dealing with my Dad’s declining health. Lately, I have been thinking about saying goodbye to someone else I love very much and saying hello to a new life.  It can be very bittersweet, to say the least.  I feel blessed that my Mom (who just turned 88), Is doing well with an Oral Chemo treatment with very few side effects and she will likely be able to welcome her 1st Great Grandson into the world (luckily there is some good along with the bad).

Guess who's going to be Grandparents!
My husband is my best friend, so having him retire was another blessing.  He had been thinking about it for a long time, and through much thought, prayers, and planning, we decided the time was right for us!  John started working very young and he was just totally burned out so it was another blessing that he was able to retire when he did.  He might end up doing something else part time eventually but I think he needs some time to relax and regroup, and I am kind of getting used to him being around all the time!  We really enjoy spending time together and it didn’t take us long to fall into a new routine… I kind of like the coffee being ready for me when I get up in the morning.  We have been enjoying going to estate and garage sales and hunting for treasures, being able to work on projects together, take mini trips when we want, and have fun with our friends and family.  A good friend told us his Dad used to say when he retired that there are six Saturdays and a Sunday and that is the truth of it!

The most exciting and best news we have had lately is the blessing of our first Grandchild!  Our daughter Jessica and her Husband Justin are expecting a Son on March 17th!  We just found out it will be a boy this week so I can start shopping!!!

This month, we are looking forward to celebrating our 30th
Wedding anniversary, our Son John’s 28th birthday, and the upcoming arrival of our new Grandbaby.  We will be celebrating together on a mini family vacation to Saugatuck in a few weeks.  Some of my most cherished memories are those spent with the ones I love. 

As I think about the good, the bad, and the ugly that life sometimes throws at us, I am reminded that we are only here temporarily and we must learn and grow from each and every circumstance that we find ourselves in.   Whether it’s sad, or happy, or sometimes somewhere in-between, and that just maybe we can take those experiences and help someone else on their journey, or at the very least help ourselves next time we are walking through a difficult situation. 

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, 
will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” 

I know for sure, that God has a plan, and that his plans are greater than mine and someday we will never have to wonder why or experience the pain and suffering that sometimes we find ourselves in.  For now, I will just rest in knowing He is always with me during each and every moment of each and every day, whether I am celebrating, or sorrowful, and for that, I am truly grateful.

Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God;

 I will strengthen you, I will help you, 
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Isaiah 41:10


Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Wonderful Weekend...

Best Picture Ever!  Love my Mommy!
Family time has become one of the most cherished times for me. Time spent with your family and friends are priceless memories that you can carry in your heart and mind for the rest of your life. Life is constantly filled with highs and lows and you never know when those lows are going to hit, and sometimes they hit pretty hard so when you are in the midst of the good times you need to enjoy them to the fullest!
Justin and Jessy
Our family has had quite a year of extreme highs and extreme lows.  My daughter got married in November, and that was a joyful time, but then my Dad took a turn for the worse and past away a few months later in January.  John and I bought a new home, and love it... another high, but then we found out shortly after that my Mom was diagnosed with cancer.  Through all that, we have just tried to trust that God has a plan, and his plan is so much greater than ours.  It is so hard to remember that in the tough times but I have been pushing myself to trust Him with everything, the good times and the bad. This is one of my favorite bible verses...

For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Jeremiah 29:11

John and Emily

This weekend happened to be a wonderful family weekend. All the chicks flew back to the nest, the sun was shining and for a short time, all was well with the world.  One of my favorite things is having my kids home and just hanging out with them.  With Johnny living in Chicago and Jessy and Justin busy with work, church and just living their own lives, times like this just don't happen very often so I really try to soak it all in when it does happen. 

Mr. and Mrs. Phillip Leja
We celebrated our nieces wedding on Saturday, so my Son John and his girlfriend Emily came into town for the wedding.  We had never met Emily before so we were really excited to spend time with her and get to know her.  John and Emily drove in on Friday evening after having dinner with her parents in Indiana so John could meet them... a regular "Meet the Parents" weekend, lol! They were expected to get here at 9 pm but unfortunately had a blow out on 94 and it took a little longer... I think they were here about 1 am, and we  are just thankful they were not hurt and made it here safely.  Emily is a very sweet, kind, and thoughtful young lady, and she also loves the Lord, she fit in very comfortably with our family and was super easy to have around, so I am going to check this one off as another answered prayer!  We can tell that she really likes John and we will continue to pray for their relationship to grow and mature. 

Big John, John and Emily
We spent Saturday afternoon before the wedding just relaxing and spending time together before the wedding.  Jessy and Justin came over for lunch and also my Mom, so she could meet Emily too (poor girl)!  The weather was lovely and we had lunch outside on the back deck.  After lunch we had fun showing everyone around and letting everyone take turns riding the ATV through the trails in the woods. By the big smiles on everyone's faces when they got back from their rides I think they had a lot of fun! My Mom is 85 years young and she even hopped on and let big John take her on a ride through the woods.  I think she had a blast too! 

Grandma Ginny takin' a ride
John's sister's daughter Jennifer, is the niece that got married, and the wedding and reception were at Crystal Gardens in Howell. The ceremony was held in a little chapel outside, right on site and the reception was in a banquet room.  It was a lovely day for the wedding, and they had perfect weather. Jennifer was an absolutely beautiful bride and looked just like a Disney Princess.  She looked very happy and I wish her and her new husband Phil a long and happy life together.

Here comes the bride!

I do!

John and Emily

Still Newlyweds!

Yep that's us!

Grandma Shaw looking lovely!

Dan and Alisha
The dinner was wonderful, but the best part was just spending time with my family.  My kids had fun and tore up the dance floor with their awesome dance moves, and it was so much fun to watch! 

Bustin' a Move on the dance floor!
Johnny and Emily had to leave last night and I got a text at 1am when they got home to Chicago.  I was sad to see them leave, but it is one of those times that I will remember forever.  I would rather have a day like Saturday spent with the ones I love than all the money or gifts in the world.  I am really glad that Jessy and Justin live fairly close and hope someday that John might be a little closer too so we can see him more!  On a happy note, they will be back in 3 weeks for Andy and Taylors wedding, can't wait!!!

Savoring the memories of a wonderful weekend,

A grateful Mom