This has been a week of family time. My heart is full. But some anxiety pulls at me because two of my children are gone, Arielle away at summer camp and Dominic away in Kenya. I will be glad when everyone is back home.
Jon and Chrissy moved this week! Finally, after months and months of waiting, they closed on their first new home! Liana and I got to spend time with Lana while they packed and cleaned and loaded the truck. With Arielle gone, it was the perfect time for Liana to be in the big sister role.
Kelsey and Seth are going home to Minnesota in a few days so Damien had a cook-out at his house, on a weekday, and invited all the family to come. I know it was a sacrifice on his part after working all day, but he and Gretchen are generous. I realized ALL my grandchildren were there together, except for the new tiny one not yet born. (Wish you had been here, Stacia!) So we corralled the kids together (except for Gretchen with the bigger tiny one not yet born) and tried to get a picture. Do you know how hard that was? Do you know how many pictures I took, yet this poor quality one is the best of the bunch? Still, I treasure it. Deacon and Joey discovered each other for the first time while we were trying to arrange the kids and it was fun to see them interacting.
In the kitchen Gretchen invited me to touch her near-to-bursting belly. What an honor! I used to hate how people would reach out without asking and touch me when I was pregnant. But Gretchen allowed me to do this. My grandchild right beneath her skin, alive and moving! So close! How I love that baby already!
Fred has discovered his own way of bonding with his grandson. He takes little Joey and walks him around outside--for hours it seems! Both seem to love it. I just can't carry that heavy boy for long. We all chased after Deacon to keep him from the street and Liana played with all the little blonde girls. We're all so different, yet we're FAMILY! I didn't get enough time to talk with Kelsey and Seth. What do you say before a year's separation? They said they have had a good summer and wished they could stay longer.
As Fred, Liana and I got ready to leave, Kelsey had just sat down to her dessert. I went over and hugged her. She stood up, my precious 17-year-old granddaughter, my first, and left her dessert to say good-bye. It was a respectful gesture. I was filled with regret for lost opportunities and words unspoken. I just told her how much I loved her. My towering grandson Seth hugged me hard. Seth gives the best hugs. He's noted for that.
On the drive home I think about how blessed I am. Like so many others, I belong to that group called GRANDMOTHERS. What a title! What an honor.
"Grandchildren are the crown of the aged..." Proverbs 17:6