Today Might Just Be the Day…

What happens in the daily life of the family.. the drama of foster care, the adventures of parenting, & pictures to share with everyone!

Stages of Marriage

October24

My baby cousin is officially hitched.

The wedding was beautiful.

And the reception was a blast!

But, in honesty, the bigger highlight, for me, was the fact that my siblings were all there. This was the first time since 2006 that we have all been together. My parents have tried to get us all together since then, but the 4 of us are hard to get to come together… And life moves quickly! Since 2006 there have been a few deployments, 4 more grandkids, and a new girlfriend.

Which leads me back to what I started with… Marriage… My youngest brother has a wonderful girlfriend–she may even be the favorite Aunt right now & they’re not even engaged. But, we are all ready for that engagement! It’s fun to be around them. They are obviously in love & at the beginning of a relationship.. They have been together for a couple of years, but they are still DINKs (double-income, no kids). They are a little strapped for cash, living in San Francisco is expensive, but the extra they do have can be spent on themselves. They have long commutes & work hard, but their weekends are filled with friends & football & the dog–no taxiing children, juggling sports and birthday parties and the “have to” junk.

My parents are on the other end of the spectrum… They did it! They raised 4 kids who have all found our ways in the world. They have made it to 44 years wed.

My other siblings and I are in the middle.

In the middle you spend a lot of your time putting out fires.

There are months that we move from crisis to crisis. The chaos of home and work and kids can suck the life out of me (& I like to think I am not alone!).

I like to think, that this middle is also where our love is growing from the young love of newly-weds to the mature love of my parents.

I am so very glad I picked B for this trip.

He makes me laugh (at inappropriate stuff & times). He has my back (always!). He is my biggest cheerleader and my partner in crime.

Often, I don’t have the time or take the time to appreciate him, but a wedding is a good reminder… Our vows remain true and I am still a happy bride.

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Aren’t we cute? Together again :)

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Obsessed?

October19

I think I have blogged a little lately.. I am mid-flight so I can’t check. But, I am fairly certain it was about running. And as I was contemplating this post, my mind went straight to my runs.

I guess I am a bit obsessed.

And I am ok with that.

Other than running… The kids went back to school this week. We all (I think all, at least) like the modified year round schedule their school follows. It’s nice to have a couple weeks off several times a year.

However, I am always ready for them to go back to school. I just get a little worn out with kids at home all the time.

So, how did we fill their break..?

Universal Studios
The beach
The movies (twice)
The Science Center
Football practice & a game
The Arizona Coyotes home opener
Video games
Netflix
Pumpkin painting with friends
Brownie craft night (siblings, too)

After this weekend, I think I will take a nap! But, for now, I am heading to Iowa to watch my cousin start his “Happily Ever After”.

Should be fun to see everyone–all of my siblings will be in one place for the first time since my last cousin got married :)

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Much, much, much better!

October8

Life & chaos continue even when I have my rough days.

Thankfully, I am doing much better!

Running is so key for me, & I had a great run yesterday!

I have a half marathon coming up in a few short weeks. Honestly, I haven’t trained as much as I should. This will be the least amount of prep before a half that I have ever done. But, this will be #9. And I know I have it in me. Having that run there on the calendar does so much to push me out the door or on my treadmill. It really does keep me sane.

I do not look like much of an athlete. And I will never win one of the races I enter–it’s pretty unlikely I’ll ever even place in my age group!

But, my body has done some amazing things.

I still barely believe that I have run a marathon. I have conquered a challenge that most people never even face.

Thank you if you thought of me & my struggle the other day.

My depression is a fight that started 20 years ago & I am fairly certain I will fight it for the rest of my life. Today I am just glad that I have running as a weapon in the battle.

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October6

Really struggling with the beast called depression today..

No rhyme or reason, there doesn’t have to be bad in my life for me to feel bad.

And I feel so guilty. It prevents me from being a good wife/mom/friend. Which then makes me feel even worse about me.

My kids don’t deserve a sad mom.

It is just not fair.

And times like this it is the hardest to muster up the strength to even think about fighting back. It feels so lonely, yet I don’t want to allow anyone else in… Nobody should have to feel this way, it’s not a feeling I want to share. So, I try to isolate myself. I try to hide from even myself until I feel a little less painful. I try to just get through and hope that tomorrow has some hope.

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Family

September3

I always thought I would live forever in my childhood home. Sure, I’d move out for college & a couple years of travel, but then my parents would downsize & I would move back in.

No clue where I thought my siblings would be, but I was always going to live in the house in the woods.

I am pretty sure we’d like that house… It is big enough to fit us.

But, my parents sold that house long before it was time for them to downsize. And we have all moved more than a couple times since then.

And I am not the only one not in Iowa. We all left. In fact, we are scattered clear across the country.

My parents have made it their goal to see each grandkid at least twice a year. But, with 9 grands in 3 different states it’s not always easy. We’d love to go see them more often, but flying 5-6 of us is expensive & we need a rental car, too…

So, this summer they made it out our way for a bit. And then my little brother learned he had training in SanDiego & my parents started making plans to see him & his wife and little girl. And SanDiego is only a few hour’s drive for us so we decided to tag along. *And* my other little brother used to live in SanDiego, too, & his girlfriend is from there.. So, they decided to make the trip, too!

All told there were 13 of us enjoying the sun & cooler weather (cooler for us–at this time of year in PHX we are getting really annoyed with 100+ days).

We checked out a couple museums in Balboa Park, relaxed on the beach, swam, ate, drank & got to know each other. This was the first time that my brother & his family had ever met B & V!

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Back to School

August26

I missed posting these a month ago when school started..

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Going, going back to Cali, Cali…

August22

We are on the road again.

Very excited about this little get away. We did a weekend in CA over summer break. We played in the sand and went to Universal Studios.

And we were done with travels… That is, until Nana told us that she was making plans :) One of my brothers is in San Diego doing some training. So, Nana & Papa flew my sister-in-law and niece out to see him. Nana & Papa are meeting us there, too. *And* if that weren’t exciting enough, my other little brother and his girl friend are coming down from San Francisco, too!

This will be the first time my brother & his wife have the chance to meet V & B! Yes, you read that correctly–they have never met my youngest two kids!

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What a Whirl Wind!

August13

School is already in week 4. How did that happen?!?

So far we have had 3 notes about behavior from a teacher, 1 letter from the principal & 1 trip the ER.

Thankfully, I think that they are calming down as the notes have slowed.. And D is healing O.K.

He was playing football before school & was pushed from behind and ended up hitting his head (face) on a wall. This happened on Friday and each day it has looked a little worse, but I think we reached the apex & it’ll start to come around. Another mommy-first was his cut… No stapes or stitches, just glue for this wound.

I know what you really want to know though… How have I been spending *all* of my free time? Well, I wasted a good week or so getting really sick. It started in my sinuses & turned into pneumonia :( The more fun stuff = sewing! I have made 2 weighted blankets for local kids–one with autism, the second with some anxiety. The blankets are supposed to be calming. I also have been running around (literally!) at the Adventure Run. I have been volunteering this season– they pay us in free shoes! I just earned a pair that I will be using for my half marathon in November (training started yesterday).

What have you been up to?

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Happy Independence Day!

July4

Hope you’re enjoying your freedom with some friends & family!

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What does an AZ storm look like?

July3

Storms here are not the same as the Midwest.. In Iowa, you can smell the rain & feel it in the air before it comes. Here you don’t want to smell a storm coming–if you have allergies the air is brutal! Storms kick up all sorts of dust and dirt.

But, it does look pretty cool!

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