Saturday, September 28, 2013

Firsts & Lasts

September is almost over, and this is only my 2nd post of the month.  Can you tell that school has started?
Between 4 graduate classes, 3 new teaching initiatives, 4 kids' and 1 husbands' athletic schedules, hiring and training a new library assistant, and my full-time teaching job--oh, and teaching a new Sunday School curriculum--I haven't had much time to reflect.  Which is really sad!  I miss my early morning hours on the blog when the "big kids" just left for school and I could *THINK*

The challenge is to find time to think, reflect, and enjoy.  And not let the busy-ness of life overwhelm. 

September has been a month of firsts and lasts.  First day of school.  First day of HIGH SCHOOL for Ally!  First time we've had kids in all 3 parts of our school:  elementary, middle, and high.  
I must make one comment about Cy's clothing choices.  He takes great care in selecting what socks he is going to wear each day.  The shirt and shorts may or may not match.  It matters not.  On this day, they just happened to go together.  Anything goes with Superman, right?

September 8th was my mom's birthday and the first time she'd ever ridden an ATV on the Belmont trail.  That was on her bucket list, so thanks to Mark's dad, we made it happen!

We rode about 6 or 7 miles out to Calamine and turned uphill to my brothers' hunting cabin/garden spot.  Ironically, we ran into another Belmont family who happened to be the ones who bought part of my parents' farm.  It was neat to catch up with them a little bit and check out the Triple E, which I hadn't seen in several years.  I think it was a first for Wynne!
Dan and Tammie rode their 4-wheelers out, too.  Brian was working out there.  He and Mary Kay do a great job of gardening, canning, and keeping it mowed.  The Triple E has been in their possession for over 20 years now!

There's no picture of Mom on the Ranger because Cy took it and apparently didn't really take it!!
Just picture her riding in here on the dusty trail.  And when I say dusty trail, I mean DUSTY.TRAIL.  August/September has been fairly dry, and we were all covered with dust!  It was fun but not something I need to do anytime soon!  Mom, in fact, rode back to her house in Brian's truck on the paved road;)

Back at Mom's, many of us gathered for a birthday party!  The neat thing is that Tim's birthday is the day before Mom's.  Joseph and family were there to celebrate.  Look at how big he's getting!! I call him the Michelin Man (you have to see his legs)!
Noah & Joseph, Mom & Sonja
Backyard football at Grandma and Grandpa's is a must.

Anna Mae, Logan, Addie, and Elsie
Happy Birthday, Dear Tim and Mom/Grandma.........and may you have many, many more!!
The first week of school was the last week on earth for my sister-in-law.  This year has been a grueling one for Kellie and her family.  God bless you, Kellie, and may you be enjoying your pain-free life with Jesus now!

Ken and his kids are amazing.  I can't find the words to say how very sorry for what they've been going through and how strong they are.  Korrine especially has been a wonderful caregiver and channel of love for and from her mom.  She gave a fantastic eulogy for Kellie and, as you can see from the next few pictures, they all coordinated a beautiful tribute to celebrate Kellie's life!
Well-behaved women rarely make history.  So Kellie!
While waiting to see the family, you could stop and write memories & clip them to the lines.  There were scads of pictures and wonderful memories in recognition of Kellie's time here.
Kellie's memorial/prayer service was held first, followed by a reception out at the Wilhelm Tell Festival grounds.  Kellie and the kids had taken part in several festivals, and it was a beautiful backdrop for the reception.  The "watering hole" had a really neat picture of Kellie and her brothers and sisters!  There were places to sit and visit, places to reflect, places to video-tape your memories, and food to eat.  It was like nothing we'd ever experienced.  Which is a great way to describe the way Kellie worked and played!

It was amazing to see how many lives were affected by one life.  Kellie will be missed.
The night of the funeral, we drove back to Platteville for more family the gym.
First time to watch our goddaughter Claire (front right) play varsity volleyball this season.  She and several of her sophomore classmates are very good and going to make some noise on the court in the coming years!
Ally and Claire...close cousins and friends:)
Another first was that Rudy started obedience classes at Pet Smart this fall.  He is learning sit, down, watch me, and stay. Sort of.  I wish they would teach us how to teach him GO POTTY OUTSIDE!!!!
Nobody has to teach him how to love, though.

First days of school EVER for our nieces Kierta (in white) and Mady (foreground)!  We went over to Jefferson for Mady's 5th birthday party.
Mady, Lauren, and Kierta on a walk...what's up, Lauren??

Mady's cousins from her mom's side, Wynne, Mady, Lauren, Paige, Trevin (Badger shirt in back), Brock, Brooke, Payton, and Shae
The other night marked Mark and my first time as PARENTS at PARENTS NIGHT.  That was really weird!!  Ally is on the JV and so now we get to do all the high school things like go and watch our daughter participate in sports, band, etc.  This was homecoming night recognition.  Ally is standing next to the girl in the green.  (Why she's wearing green instead of our school colors, I have no idea.)
Oh, and we're in the middle of football season, too.  5 and 0 as I write this and hoping to make it 6-0 by this evening!!! GO CHIEFTAINS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We have a new band director at school and he's awesome.  This is the high school band and the FIRST time we got to hear "Fresh Trash"!  

When not beating on a trash can, Ally plays the trumpet :)

Lights off, glowing drumsticks, drum sounds....very, very cool.
This month has also marked the first time the twins get to play middle school sports after school!  They have been waiting anxiously for about 2 years is all.  
 Come on, Shae!  You can do it!!
 You can tell the twins apart several ways.  On the court, Paige has the zebra-striped knee pads:)
 The twin hams playing together in the same game!  Last night was the FIRST time that ever happened.
Oh, it's my first time back to reffing volleyball.  Thank goodness it's just middle school and not high school competition.  I couldn't handle the precision required at the JV or varsity level.  Last night was my first time getting hassled by fans for not making the right call.  Sigh.

So many firsts and lasts.  Do we ever stop and take the time to wonder if we might be encountering our last of something?  The last time I'll be able to run long distances because my foot needs surgery?  The last time I will have a child ask for me to read them a bedtime story?  The last time I'll say good-bye to a loved one?

Thank goodness there is One who is in control of the firsts and lasts.

I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.--Revelation 22:13


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home