As I finished up my last post I was thinking that my next post would be all about the wonderful time I had during my long-awaited Girls’ Week.
I would be sharing about the wonderful family and friends (aside from my immediate family) that I would be blessed to spend time with –
Cousin Robin who picked me up from the airport and then hung around with Elna and I for dinner. How delightful that was!
My buddy Lynne who had just arrived home from a hiking excursion out west and would be leaving shortly for Hawaii to welcome a new grandbaby. How wonderful to spend the day with her!
I might be remembering my brave brother who (along with his lovely wife and daughter) joined our group on Sunday. I say brave because he was the only guy, and there were 10 of us girls! And I’ll also be remembering that I didn’t think to take any pictures of that! Doof.
Or maybe I would be sharing about the fun time I had with my great-nieces-
Michele – an energetic 2 year old
Her little sister, Sawyer, who is just about 10 months!
And Rianne – twelve years old and helpful beyond words!
Or maybe I’d be remembering about the time we spent just hanging out on the lawn (getting ready to chase Michele!)
Anyone for a dip?
I’d be remembering the last minute scramble for a group picture of This Year’s Girls –
or the beautiful sunsets that we were blessed with –
And of course I will always remember the quiet times I had with my precious sisters, whether it was our early morning conversation with that first cup of coffee still snuggled under the covers, all of us in one bed or as we sat on the back porch and watched the sunset on our last evening together.
There are so many memories, and they are precious all.
But perhaps the most vivid memory of this year’s Girls’ Week will be the phone call that I got mid-morning on Memorial Day saying that Gary was in the ER in Nevada City with weakness on his right side. Within the next few hours he would be diagnosed as having a subdural hematoma and would be needing emergency brain surgery. By the end of the day (and upon being examined by a neurosurgeon) it was determined that the surgery might not be necessary, but I was on the first plane I could get and heading back across the country. From that point on the memories turn to blessings-
*Getting a flight that had me in Sacramento by noon on Tuesday. And making all the connections even after my hair barrette set off the security alarm in NH and I had to have a full body search!
*Having our daughter Lara meeting me in the airport (she was already “mostly” on vacation that week, so she was able to get to Sacramento on Monday!)
*Having wonderful, wonderful friends, Jo and Roy Butler, who took Gary to the ER and stayed with him until they got him into a bed in the ICU at a larger hospital. They kept me up to date on developments and were calm and steady and superb.
*Having my sisters with me to help me (and hold me) through those first uncertain hours.
*Realizing that Gary was getting excellent care from a top-notch hospital and neurosurgeon, even though I was 2000 miles away and could do nothing to help.
*Knowing that between my family, my SOWER family, my Facebook friends, and friends and family of all those mentioned before, Gary and I were both constantly before the throne of Grace.
We’re home now. There was no surgery, so the hematoma (apparently the result of a fall almost two months ago) remains and the doctor feels that his symptoms will continue to subside and the hematoma will resolve itself. His symptoms are mild, but include a “fuzziness” regarding his surroundings and while he can grip his coffee cup, he’s not always sure he’s putting it down on the table (not visually, but spatially). And he really likes to hold my hand when we’re walking. 🙂 Right now the thought of driving the motorhome anywhere (we were scheduled to leave for South Dakota on Sunday) is very far from his mind. The kind people here at Diamond Arrow have assured us that we can stay parked here as long as necessary (another one of the blessings) so we’ll be hanging out here until the time is right for us to go.
If this is “old news” to you, I can only thank you from the bottom of my heart for your constant thoughts and prayers and words of encouragement. For the news to go from “emergency brain surgery” to “go home, listen to your body and take a Tylenol if you get a headache” in 36 hours is certainly a “God Thing” in my book. If this is “new news” to you, we hope you will add us to your prayer list. The days ahead are uncertain, but we are confident that we are in God’s tender care.
Every experience God gives us, every person He puts in our lives is the perfect preparation for the future that only He can see.”
— Corrie Ten Boom
Those of you who stop by here often know that we had an AMAZING summer. I totally overworked words like Spectacular, Awesome, and Incredible as we drove through British Columbia, the Yukon Territory, Alberta and Alaska. We were overwhelmed (another over-used word) by the mountains and moose and bear and glaciers and fjords and rivers and elk and eagles (etc, etc) that we saw, not to mention the wonderful people that we met and worked along side of during our time there. It was an outstanding, once in a lifetime trip.
There was only one drawback with our whole Alaskan Adventure ’09 scenario. It pretty much ruled out getting to our beloved Cabin in Vermont. We just couldn’t do both. But, for the first time in many, many years, our kids and grandkids ALL made it to the Cabin. And while it wasn’t quite the same as being there ourselves, it did my heart good to hear their stories and see their pictures and know that they were loving that little corner of the world that is so precious to us.
Toby and Tammy and the girls went during the summer. This was their first Cabin trip in nine years, and the girls’ introduction to life at the Cabin. Ah, the adventure of it all!
I’m calling this the Turtle Series:
It sounded like (and looks like!) the girls had a great introduction to the cabin, even with all of it’s rustic (i.e no running water) charm!
Josiah and Abigail went up over Labor Day. They brought up friends for the long weekend(always fun) and then had a couple of days to themselves as the week went on. I know they worked hard on some chores, and I trust they worked hard on kickin’ back and recharging too. What they didn’t work hard on was picture taking…. 🙂
So, moving on to Lara’s trip – Ah, she came in October. When you keep a fire going all the time and get to enjoy the amazing New England fall colors.
Our backyard swing is becoming a favorite photo spot –
Yes, we missed getting our “Cabin Fix” in person this year, but a vicarious “fix” is better than none at all!
We’re still at MAF, even though our original plan was to head out yesterday (Thursday). My computer won’t be back at Best Buy until Monday, so we’re obviously hanging around until then. (They’ve replaced the motherboard again – maybe the third time’s the charm?) Most of the Sower folks have left, so it will be a quiet (and I’m told rainy) weekend. Back to the sewing machine I go!
No exciting Road Trips this weekend – but here are a couple of odds and ends –
The Mystery Building.
Sorry, Toby, but the sonic boom guess was a little off and no, it’s not a giant rain guage! It is actually a facility for practicing sky-diving. Yep, indoor skydiving! Here’s the link to SkyDive Arizona . I have no idea how it actually works, but we might try to get over there during the holidays to do a little research. Pretty Crazy, eh?
Before we decided (as a family) to exchange names this year instead of getting gifts for everyone (the economy, you know), I had already started on some Christmas tablerunners for the kids and my sisters. Since I didn’t want to waste that good fabric, I proceeded on. I sent them out as Pre-Christmas presents and I think they have all been received by now – so I can share them with you. I think they turned out pretty nice – though in all honesty, I really do need to work on my machine quilting. Practice, practice, practice!
(all the centers were the same – only the borders and bindings are unique.)
If you have a Costco membership (or know someone who does) I’d like to recommend the Coscto.com Photo services. This year I put together a calendar featuring our Vermont cabin that turned out really nicely. I was able to add important dates and I could have even added photos to the dates. The price was great (compared to other photo gift sites) and the service fast. Then I worked with my sister to make notecards. Again, a pretty easy process, lots of choices, and the price was very reasonable. Certainly much cheaper than if I had printed them on my little HP printer. So – it might be a little late for this Christmas, but thought I’d share my experience!
After much debate and research, I decided to go with a Canon PowerShot SX10 SI. It’s not quite an SLR, but it has lots of features and goes from a great wide angle shot to a great zoom. Remember the Roosevelt Dam from last weekend’s road trip?
Well here are the ducks that were swimming down by the rocks.
Pretty cool, isn’t it.
Plus it has a special setting just for sunsets 🙂 . Gotta love that!
Wait until I have a chance to play with the Macro settings! Whoooheee!
Have a great week! Get those presents wrapped!
I came across this picture of our family cabin in Vermont the other night. Judging by the new construction look (both in the landscaping and in the building) it was probably taken around 1938. This little building has been a part of my life as long as I can remember. My grandfather, the town doctor in the small Vermont town of Bradford, bought a 200 acres homestead on the side of Wrights Mountain around 1935. Though it had once been a small farm with a cluster of buildings, only the granite skeleton of cellars and foundations remained. He built this small one room cabin in 1937 or 1938 on one of the foundations, right next to a cellar hole lined with massive granite stones. The story goes that he built it so he could keep track of my grandmother and his children (my dad and his brother and sister). Apparently Gramma Lizzie wasn’t all the happy living the fishbowl life of small town doctor’s wife so she would pack up the kids periodically and head off for different adventures. We’ve been told she had one of the first trailers brought into the state and used to go camping with the kids along the banks of the local rivers. (Obviously before the days of KOA campgrounds!). But whether he had it built to keep track of Lizzie or just to give himself a get-away place not too far from town doesn’t really matter. We will be forever grateful for the gift that he gave his future generations.
The Cabin hasn’t really changed much over the years. I don’t know when it was shingled in red, but it has always been that way as far as I remember. The pond was dug in the…uummmm..1950’s something (Elna remembers that, I don’t), a back porch was added in the early 60’s (I remember that), electricity was added in (around?) 1964 to accommodate the new fangled Destroilet (Yes, it was a gas toilet. Honest.) When I was a youngun’, there were cows that roamed the property from a neighboring farm. I don’t know why that ended, but we haven’t had any bovines around for probably 20 years. Some of the property has been sold off (we’re down to about 100 acres), and we’ve built a new road. The Destroilet bit the dust a decade or so ago, and a good old fashioned outhouse has served us well ever since. We still use the same well I carried water from as a teenager (the original well was replaced in the 60’s sometime), and although we now have water pumped up to close to the cabin, we still claim “no running water” with pride. No TV, barely a good radio signal, and no phone. (OK, cell phones work up there sometimes, but that’s a pretty recent development. And while it’s nice to be able to call for a tow truck (like last summer), it seems just wrong somehow when the phone actually rings.) Pear trees have grown up in the cellar hole – the perfect spot for a hammock. The red wooden boat that we fished from with Grampy Doc has been replaced with an aluminum one from Sears (though it seems to leak about the same). Here is The Cabin today (well, not today, but within the last couple of years!) –
Doc and Lizzie left The Cabin to my parents, and they left it to the four of us kids. And it brings all of us great joy to see the latest generation (Lizzie and Doc’s great-great grandchildren) enjoying it and loving it as they did. And we do.
Thank you, dear grandparents!