"Home is the place where, when you have to go there, they have to let you in."

-- Robert Frost

Monday, May 23, 2016

april into may

Janie's friends gathered for a surprise birthday/going away party for her.

Celia arrived from college right in the middle of the hoopla at the restaurant where the party was going on.

After finals wrapped, she and her college roommates took a vacation in Florida for a well deserved week.

I think she was pretty exhausted from spending the night in an airport somewhere but she was so good to endure our elation at having her back.

All the while, these friends were wrapped in their own little world celebrating Janie.

For gifts, they each brought something of meaning that Janie could take with her.

I think that was a deck of cards that they played with during lunches with their inside joke quotes written on each card.

And there was another inside joke here.

One boy and his mother had made these giant collages which brought me to tears.

More than anything, she's going to miss this "squad".

We've more than loved having Celia home.

I'm going to miss little things like running around in pjs at the elementary school movie on the lawn when it's not quite warm enough yet.

I may or may not miss this reason to slow my life down every time I have to get somewhere.

I had a birthday too, which we won't harp on. But when I was asked what I really wanted, I asked that the sock basket be matched.

Rather than the typical groans because gifts from a store are so much easier .... that's exactly what  I got. For the first time ever.

Random photo of Christian.

An absolutely gorgeous .... if not educational ... day at the zoo. We felt the need to use our passes before they expire and we move beyond zoo's.

We are squeezing in all the doctor appointments that we can. 

Along with tons of end of the year concerts and awards.

Here's Janie's orchestra concert:

And an award banquet for drama.

And the end of the year honor roll ceremony:

Where she congregated with these friends again.

Charlotte having watched Janie perform on this stage so many times, wanted a picture there.

Then there was a Thespian award ceremony where Janie was inducted into the National Society.

That was a pretty big deal.

The kids preformed skits and awarded their peers. She was awarded for Best Attitude.

Then she performed a song no one knew she was going to sing.

It had lyrics about "giving one more hug before I go" and "when you think of me, we'll be sleeping under the same stars" ... as she went around hugging all of her friends.

Then she stopped at me last and I was a horrible mess in front of all those parents and kids.

So there was that.

Grant has finally wrapped up his home school year and I think he's pretty thrilled we can call that done.

All the dejunking and packing stuff up disrupted the tiniest baby mouse one night and a group of girls over for a late nighter helped Newel trap it.

That was kind of a hoot to watch.

Annie has been squeezing in dates. Here's a picnic and games at the park after school date.

We said a sad farewell to our poultry ladies but are so happy they've found a great home at my friend's therapeutic horseback riding ranch.

She tells me that Pebbles loves those special friends who come to pet her and it warms our heart and keeps us from crying to know that she has gone exactly where she should.

One day while cleaning out the garage, a gentle rain fell and turned everything green making me catch my breath and wonder how I could ever leave this.

I'm trying not to think too hard on that.

Grant is selling his go cart for greater things but in the meantime, getting every last minute out of it.

During the week following Mother's Day, Eliza's class at school did a mother's tea.

She was pretty excited to come out of the classroom to find me there on time and ready to be escorted into the cafeteria.

They served moms cookies and lemonade, sang some pretty great songs and had a slide show of portraits they'd made of their moms.

Charlotte pretty much thought it was the best ever to be included in on that thing.

And then to get to run around the school yard in her "party dress" with Eliza.

Annie and her friends have been soaking in their time together by enjoying the last of our pond and woods while playing photo shoot.

Annie also got the Stake President's award in seminary and we celebrated her.

Along with this great group of kids from our stake.

And these incredible friends from our ward.

And this one I know she'll miss dearly.

If you got through all that, you're a champ. Oh man, parting is such sweet sorrow.

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