Sunday, March 29, 2009

Grave Visitation

It was a little bit cold, but it turned out much nicer than the dreary rainy weather that was predicted. Jadyn wrote a note on a rock for herself and made one for Bryn too. I had a bit of trouble finding the grave, but between phone calls to my dad and mom (my in-laws) I found it. It turned out I was going the right direction, but just needed to go a little farther. The head marker looks really nice and although I didn't want to take a picture of it this time, I'm planning on taking one the next time I visit. Katelyn thought it looked really pretty which meant a lot to me. I had no idea what my emotions would be on this trip (I was pretty much nervous the whole journey there), but I was surprised to find that it just felt really good to go. After Jadyn and Bryn found just the right spot to put their rocks, Bryn began hopping from foot to foot. She had to go to the bathroom. My Aunt Suzanne was praying for something to lighten the mood this time and this was sure it. I was very glad I waited to go as a family and also for the headstone to be put in place. The trip just felt right. Katelyn and I talked about just the two of us going some time as we both realize the girls have even shorter attention spans than the two of us.

My mother-in-love told me she has already raised all the money she needs to walk the Three Day in the fall. I know it will be a hard walk for her this year, but she has a knack for doing the right thing and this definitely is the right thing.

Finally, today has been a really hard day. I had a soccer game today where we played great as a team and won in style which normally would be enough to brighten any day for me, but I've felt down all day. Maybe next month the 29th will be easier.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Maybe Tomorrow

I keep thinking that "today" will be the day we go to Jessica's grave. However, this week has been jam-packed especially for Katelyn. There have been opportunities to go, but not with all of my girls and I feel like it's important to go as a whole family the first time. Of course God is always in control of timing, but especially in this situation, I'm confident that He is choosing the right time for us to go as a family. It will be OK if that day is Sunday the 29th, but I want that day to be tomorrow. Yes, I'm still dreading the 29th. We are definitely moving forward (not moving on) in our life without Jess and while that life is a good one; it is also filled with moments of sorrow. I'm not saying those moments are bad-- I have learned that sorrow for a time is not a bad thing-- but they still catch me off guard. The Yikes have soccer games in the early afternoon, so tomorrow night/afternoon might be the perfect time to go (although the weather is supposed to be awful).

Monday, March 23, 2009


Family went to Jessica's grave tonight and saw that her headstone is there now. I had been waiting for her headstone to be there before I took my family. Grass doesn't grow in the winter, so I didn't want them to see just a dirt spot. We have another crazy busy week and I really don't want our visit to be just something we squeeze in. It's also supposed to be rainy all week. Please pray for us to find the right time for me to take the girls.

Friday, March 20, 2009

My Dear Katelyn

I've had several people comment on Katelyn not being in as many pictures on the blog or her not doing as many activities with me and the Yikes. Katelyn is fourteen going on fifteen. In four years, she will be living on her own. As she earns independence and responsiblity, I'll increasingly give her more freedom. Right now that means I have been letting her stay home at times when I do stuff with the Yikes. Most of the time that means she doesn't have to go to the girls' soccer games, but sometimes that means she also doesn't have to go a fun activity that doesn't interest her. She went with us when we went to Rainforest Cafe and a movie on Tuesday. Truth be told she is a great big sister (the Yikes adore and respect her) who is growing up a lot sooner than her sisters will. Sometimes that means for her distancing herself a bit from her sisters. For example, she didn't want a St. Patrick's Day t-shirt this year which I would have liked her to have, but isn't part of growing up learning to have different preferences than your dad? Right now Katelyn and I have a simple agreement: there are some mandatory family activities she has to go to. I expect her to participate in those without complaint and she does a great job with that. Then other times I give her choice and honor her request. If you know Katelyn personally, than you know she has done an amazing job in the past year and is growing into a young woman that her mom would have been proud of.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Happy Saint Patrick's Day

Katelyn was still asleep when we took this picture this morning. Spring Break has not always been a happy thing in our lives. It was on Spring Break that we first found out that Jess had cancer. It was also on Spring Break that Jess broke her hip and her health rapidly declined. However, this year Spring Break is really nice. It has already been a time spent with friends and about growing closer as a family. Yesterday, my mother-in-love and I took the girls to the Rain Forest cafe and then to see Race to Witch Mountain. I really, really love my mom and so it was nice to talk with her during the drive and neat seeing her being a grandma to my girls. Happy Saint Patrick's Day!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Spring Break... aaaaaahhhh

Sorry for the long gap between posts; life has been hectic, but Yippee it's Spring Break! Today has been an up and down day. Finding out the girls thought it would be fun to squirt each other with the detachable shower head-- not fun. Going to eat at our favorite hole-in-the-wall restaurant, Neighborhood Grill-- thumbs up. Going to Bryn's soccer game in the cold and wet-- not so great. Going to Jace's (cousin Mandy's son) 2nd birthday party-- awesome! The best part of my day though was seeing MeMaw (AKA Betty) walk through the door at Jace's party. She looked fantastic too-- not at all like someone who has had heart surgery!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


Today was MeMaw and Popo's 58th wedding anniversary. Here's an update and advice he wrote in an email:

Betty continues to recover well. She has been to out patient Rehab three times and that is going well. She has been out of the house a few times and everything went well. She is more active everyday and remains very positive during her recovery.

On one of our outings we went to our Grandson's Corbin's baseball game. He made our day with a GRAND SLAM HOME RUN. Three hundred and five feet plus.

You all have made our days with your prayers and good wishes. Betty and I appreciates all of you so much.

Today is our 58th wedding anniversary. We got married on her parents wedding anniversary. They would have been married 80 years today.

Before we got married and I was in the navy in San Diego, I was hitch hiking home and a family friend picked me up and gave me the best advice for a good marriage. He told me to never go to bed mad at each other as if you do, the mad will move over to the next day.

His advice was for one of us to say they were sorry (that was usually me. ha) and that would be the end of the bad feelings. We have attempted to follow this advice, and it looks like has worked for 58 years.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Midnight run to the grocery store

Actually it was more like an 11 o'clock run, but it's after midnight now. I was just going to pick up milk for tomorrow, but realized we were out of a bunch of other stuff too. I didn't even buy dinner stuff, but it still felt like I bought a lot. It isn't always easy going to the store and making stuff, but I kind of like how my kids now ask "What's for dinner?" instead of "Who is bringing us dinner?"

Bryn is still having nightmares, so I reminded her that she can ask Jesus for help when she is having a nightmare. She looked up into my eyes and said, "OK daddy, but if that doesn't work can I still crawl in bed with you?" She is so practical!

This week coming is going to be a busy one because of Open House both at the Yikes' school and mine, but I think it's also going to be a good one. God bless you and thank you for keeping up with us.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Time Change

I'm putting the Yikes down early tonight. When I told the girls about the time change, they started laughing so hard. I told Jadyn first and she ran to tell Bryn, then they both started laughing hilariously. I'm glad they thought it was funny because as an adult is there anything funny about losing an hour?

It's amazing how fast a girl can mess up her room and how long it takes to clean it again. The Yikes finally have their room clean after spending this week cleaning it every day, but I have to wonder how long will it last?

Thank Goodness for Mother-in-laws

Both of the Yikes have soccer games this afternoon. Bryn has her game at the central YMCA at 1:00 and Jadyn has her game at 2:00 at Harold Patterson. When you factor in drive time there is no way I can make both of their games which is where my mom (mother-in-law/mother-in-love) comes in. I'm coaching Jadyn's team so I've got her while mom takes Bryn. Tuesday night is Open House at my school, but it is also Open House at Katelyn's school. Her teachers have been a part of our journey-- our journey now without Jessica. I really want her teachers to know how much they have meant to us, so once again mom is going to be the mouthpiece for our family. The loss of Jessica has been hard on all of us-- it has been very hard for mom to lose her daughter. I really appreciate her acceptance of me still as a son and that she loves being my daughters' grandmother.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Warming Up

I feel like I can take a deep after making it through yesterday. This week has been the frenzy of frenetic activity I thought it would be, but I didn't collapse in bed like I thought I would. We were out of milk so I had to make a trip to the grocery store first!

The Warm Place was really nice. I was thinking the kids were going to benefit the most this time because I feel like I'm dealing with my grief in a healthy way and I feel like each day is better. However, I realized after listening to people last night that it's still important for me to be around other people who have lost their spouse. It's important that I share Jessica's story and listen to other share their stories. As for the kids, Katelyn did not complain on the way back home (a good sign). Jadyn and Bryn were happy. Bryn has been having nightmare every night for about a week now. I told her what a good friend of mine recommended that she tell the monsters in her dreams that "Jesus said go away." Actually when I told Bryn this, Jadyn came up with her own plan; she said dream that you have a big sword and chop the monster into bits. Please pray that Bryn be free from her nightmares at night: they are spiritual and emotional.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

No 29th

Jess passed away on October 29th. The 29th of each month since then has been incredibly difficult. I keep thinking that the next 29th will be easier but so far they aren't getting easier. This month was a present from God, there's no 29th day in February this year!

We start the Warm Place on Tuesday which is also the day Katelyn and my students take the Reading TAKS test. Lately, it's been a busy, hectic time so I am planning on crashing in bed fully clothed after the Warm Place and falling asleep right away.