"You can make anything by writing."

-- C. S. Lewis

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The Next Thing

A friend once asked me if there has ever been a “bad year” in our marriage….a year where everything that possibly could go wrong, did. At that point, when she asked me, 2008 was undoubtedly the winner.

Then, there was the last six months. I don’t know if 2012 has been harder than 2008, but it certainly hasn’t been a piece of cake, for so many various reasons. I don’t know how many blog posts I have started in the last month and have given up because they sounded too much like a pity party. I was afraid that my honesty about things would only serve to drag others down. And while I want honesty in my writing, I don’t want it to be depressing. And for some reason I just couldn’t shake the woeful tone. Everyone goes through their own crap; nobody is asking to share ours. :-)

So, at church on Sunday, I felt like God was telling me that the time of grief is over and that we need to get ready for the next thing. Now, I have no idea what that means… “the next thing.” But it excites me. And scares me. ;-) And deep down, I know it will be good.


Here are some quick Ryley Quotes:

At my birthday dinner, we tried a new restaurant, which looked large from the outside. As we parked the car….

“I’m getting excited! I love big restaurants!” she said. “Then you have to ‘navigate’ your way to the restroom, and sometimes you even need a map!”


Ryley has developed an obsession with watching Bob Ross, the beloved artist from the 1980s show “Joy of Painting.” We only get one show a week on PBS, so we have to carefully portion the viewing pleasure. After I informed her I would be picking her up from school one day, I also told her that if she finished all her homework by a good time, maybe we could watch Bob Ross.

“Maybe you can come get me early so we can have more Bob Ross time!”

She was completely serious.


On our way home from school one day, Ryley quite giddily shared that a boy in her class had said she was funny, which he said made her “so cute.”

“And I thought, ‘Oh no! Now my daddy has to kill you!’”

Ryan, of course, is always “joking” that when it’s time for Ryley to date young men, he will scare them off with his gun. :-)


Ryley often imagines other realities, quite vividly and wistfully. During Hurricane Sandy…

“If Hurricane Sandy came to Colorado, would we play games and stuff, just to keep our spirits up?”

“Hurricane Sandy is not coming to Colorado.”

“I know, but if it did…”

And then…

“If we had to evacuate, would you let us take Juliet?”


“Oh, thank you!” And then she hugged me tightly, as if I had just literally saved our dog from certain death.


“When was the first time you ever met Daddy?”

“Sadly, I don’t remember the first time.”

“Well, did you bump into him in the hallway and drop your school books?”

If only it were that “romantic.” :-)


“I would never name my son DJ or TJ or any type of initial. People named DJ tend to become rappers, and it would be dorky for me to be the mom of a rapper. And if they were a business person? Oh my gosh! ‘This is All in One Contractors; my name is DJ. How can I help you?’ That would be dorky. Nobody would want to hire them. President DJ???”


Snapshots of October/November…

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Ryley’s Halloween costume (Annabeth from the Percy Jackson books). She was just getting over a week and a half of strep throat, so we didn’t do anything…just passed out candy to trick-or-treaters at our door. I don’t think anybody recognized her costume, but she didn’t care. :-)

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Ryan helps a little girl in our Sunday School class fill a shoebox for Operation Christmas Child. The kids’ support was overwhelming. They filled 22 boxes!

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We went to my grandma’s house in Nebraska for a quick 28-hour Thanksgiving trip. Ryley was able to finish sewing her baby quilt on Honey’s fancy-schmancy machine…






And to usher in the Christmas season….


And that was November. Now on to the next thing. :-)