Friday, April 29, 2011

the changing of the guard

Today is the big wedding. William and Kate got married this morning, with all the pomp and circumstance that an occasion like this requires. This morning I did not get up at 2am to watch said event, but I do remember getting up with my Mom 30 years ago to watch Diana and Charles get married. If it didn't involve that special 2am time, I probably would have gotten up to see at least some of it, but I am pooped. Just could not make it out of bed that early, and still work today.

I've seen the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace, and it is pretty impressive. Today marks a big change in the line of succession for the British monarchy. It also happens to mark that we only have 4 weeks of school left. This, I am celebrating! I feel the changing of the seasons, even though we are in the middle of Spring, and Summer is officially a long way off. We are starting to talk about the things we are going to do this summer, such as planning for trips, and making lists of supplies for VBX at church.

I love that feeling of having something to look forward to - something to anticipate. I love the eagerly waiting before a trip or vacation, of seeing if it meets or exceeds what I have been expecting. I also love anticipating summer vacation. But I am also acutely aware that this means that time is passing as well. Time is fleeting, and flying by faster than I can handle sometimes.

I'm not sure that I am taking advantage of the time that I have, or if I am using my time wisely. As I get older, it occurs to me that time really is precious, and if I'm not making the most of what I have then I'm not being a good steward. Good stewardship applies to time, and not just money. Just as we should carefully consider how we use our money, we should carefully consider how we use our time.

I sure wish I had known or realized this when I was younger, and had more time! As I get older, and hopefully wiser, I realize how valuable time really is, and how my decisions about time matter.

Here's to the changing of the guard, and the seasons, and life...

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

the end of an era

Yesterday, my Auntie Crystal died. Well, techincally, she is my mom's aunt, more accurately my mom's mom's sister.

This is me, Auntie Crystal, and my cousin Kasey, taken on a trip out to CA a couple years ago. We are standing in Shuberts (look them up!) in Chico, CA and it's the ice cream and candy store that Uncle Charles and Auntie Crystal ran for a bajillion years. Really, I don't know how many, but I do know that in 1938 it was started by Charles' Uncle Leonard Shubert, and then Charles and Crystal ran it forever, and now their son, my uncle Chuck owns it, and his son Nate actually runs it. My mom worked there when she was in college!

Anyway, Crystal's sister, Grandma Annie passed away a couple years ago, and Grandpa Glen passed away a couple years before that, so Crystal was the last of that generation who was still around. She was 92 when she died.

Even after Grandma Annie and Grandpa Glen passed away, I could still talk to Auntie Crystal. And she was SHARP! She remembered tons of things, and was very active, even up to a couple months before she passed away. This is not a great picture, but it's me and Auntie Crystal playing cards. And I recall that she beat me several times. I blame mom for the bad photography...

Auntie Crystal and Grandma Annie had a great relationship. They were friends, lived in the same town for, like 50 years, and raised their kids together. Now that they are gone, I realize what a blessing it is to have that kind of familiy relationships. My sister Angie and I have always had a good relationship, but now that we are adults, it really is great. This morning I got up at 3am to take Angie and Dan and the boys to the airport. Here they are all ready to go (at 4:30am!):

I am grateful for the richness of my family, and the deep history I have gotten from them. I am grateful for the experience growing up with Grandpas and Grandmas, and aunts and uncles, and the weighty respect I have for their generation.

I'll close today's family thoughts with a couple more pictures. This one was taken in the summer of 1926. Crystal is on the right, and Grandma Annie is in the middle (in the crib). Their sister Gracie is on the left.

This one is the same 3 sisters many, many years later. Crystal is on the left, and Grandma Annie is on the right.

Goodbye Auntie Crystal. Miss you already.

Friday, April 8, 2011


Today, I took a 3rd grade spelling test.

I was going down to third grade to talk to one of the teachers, and she announced that it was time for the weekly spelling test. I was feeling silly, so I  jumped up and down excited for spelling test. Maybe I should have thought before being silly (story of my life) because she invited me to take the test with them. In CURSIVE.

I have to say, I think I did pretty well. In fact, I think I got 100%.

And I had a little flashback to when I was in elementary school, and taking those kind of tests on a regular basis. Gave me a little warm memory.

This makes me grateful for all the education I have received in my life. I finished High School, have a bachelor's degree, as well as a Master's Degree. And then I think about all the people in the world that don't even have the opportunity to go to school past a certain level, or even at all. Education is a great gift, and privilege.

When's the last time you took a test?

Sunday, April 3, 2011

little things

Today is a gratefulness post about the little things in life. It's kind of funny that I realized this in a bathroom yesterday, because I am mightily grateful for indoor plumbing. I watched Slumdog Millionaire with some friends a bit ago, and thought about the fact that many people do NOT live with indoor plumbing. I don't know if this comes out of my mom's porta-potty phobia, but that's neither here nor there.

My first little thing comes from that bathroom trip yesterday. I was at Starbucks, because someone had given me a gift card (thanks Ang!) and went to the bathroom. I am grateful that Starbucks always has nice bathrooms. I've been to Starbucks in several places, in lots of cities, and they always have nice bathrooms. And God bless whoever invented the hook on the back of the door to hang your purse on. I just can't stomach putting my purse on the floor of a public bathroom. Who KNOWS what has been on that floor???

My second little thing is for fabric softener. I like soft towels, and when I dried off from today's shower, I thought about how nice it is to have soft, fluffy towels to dry off. While we are on the subject of fluffy towels, I am thankful for my washer and dryer IN MY HOUSE. For many years, like a lot of people, I did not have a washer and dryer, so I hauled my laundry to the laundromat each week to get it clean. I got pretty efficient at it, but I'm just as happy to have a washer and dryer. And that I don't have to do laundry in a river...

My third little thing is for books. I just finished reading a book, and it was really good. I was engrossed for the whole last third of the book. I'm grateful for the access we have to books and information. Because as we all know from schoolhouse rock, "it's great to read because knowledge is power".

I guess I could do this all day, but I really am thankful for that purse hook that started all this. I'm going to end with this thought: It doesn't matter where or how you live, but that you are grateful for the good things that make up your life.

It really is the little things.