Tuesday, June 26, 2007

After school/work today,

We had apppointments to get our hair trimmed. All of us. Then we had to go to Fleetwood for Max and Drew's semi-annual dentist appointments.
Before you know it, it's 6 pm and we're in Surrey so we pop in on Baps and Nan. And the eat chocolate bars and chips stored in the pantry. While the kids watched an old episode of the Simpsons, (where Homer's voice is not Homer's voice and Bart looks like he was drawn by a 4 year old) I wandered out back to the un-landscaped "green space" behind their yard.
"Why are you taking pictures from way over there?" my dad called from the deck. "You can't even see me when you're that far away..."

I'm having a hard time watching him age.
Do you remember than Mel Gibson movie, "Forever Young"? How Mel's character was frozen for, like 50 years, and then when he thawed out, he aged 50 years in 3 days?
That's what it feels like with my dad. He probably has been getting older all along, but it's just that now - this year - it's becoming apparent that he's not 48 years old anymore. He's kinda acting his age.
I'm not used to that.
He isn't either.
It's a struggle.

I'm also not overjoyed that my kids are getting older. Especially with summer here. With 2 of them working, and the third one not thrilled about being stuck with me, it's no fun making plans, knowing that none of your kids will want or be able to do them with you.

When they were littler, we used to have a 'family meeting' during June and make a poster listing all the things we wanted to do over the summer. We'd include places we wanted to visit (like the Aquarium or beach), people we wanted to visit (like friends we rarely saw), things we wanted to do (learn to tie shoes, ride a 2 wheeler, watch a meteor shower) and things we wanted to learn (like memorize a few bible verses, do one page of math skills a day, or read a book a week).
I'm a list maker, an organizer - and I loved having a plan for the summer. The kids, too young to know any different, never objected to the way we approached two months of school-less-ness.
I miss those days.

The days when they didn't object just for the sake of objecting.
The days when they were happy to have me be apart of their days off.
The days when we worked at something (checking off stuff on a poster) together.
The days when none of us had to get up at 6:45 am to drive someone to work. With a bag lunch.

There are so SO many experiences I want to share with my kids yet. Like drive the coastal highway through California. See the prairies. Camp at Cherry Grove. Hike the Chief. Go to Barkerville. Do Disneyworld.
Is my time up?
Over already?
Will they be doing these things with their friends?
Or their own families?
The window of opportunity to make memories feels like it's shrinking.

I think what I'm wishing I could do, is relive some of the happy times from my past with my kids.
I want them to have some of the same memories I do.
Which is silly I suppose.
They live in a different time and place than I did.
And whereas it looks like a tour of Hearst Castle might not be a memory we can share, we are chalking up other memories.
Like Creationfest.

And this Mexico Missions Trip...
Which reminds me, if anyone still wants to contribute to our work in Mexico, we are gratefully accepting donations of sports equipment (soccer balls, etc) that we can leave down there, Spanish Bibles, and craft supplies. Money is always appreciated, as we're planning on going on a shopping trip to fill up the house we build with essentials like plates, forks, towels and some bedding.
One other thing on my wish list is for someone to lend us one of those small printers for printing single 4 x 6 photographs. Apparently it's very rare for these children to ever see photographs of themselves and we'd love to bless them with portraits. I've made arrangements to bring my camera and laptop along (and yes, I will have access to the internet twice while we're away, so the Mexico blog will be updated) but I don't have a printer worth bringing. So ...
Thanks to all of you who have generously sent cheques... Pix n Prose blog readers have donated $2400 so far. You are awesome.
Three things I'm thankful for:
1. Warm breezes on summer evenings.
2. Happy memories.
3. Cold, crisp, sweet, seedless watermelon.
Oh, one last thing. Friends of mine are off to Europe this weekend, for a month, to celebrate their 10th anniversary. They will be blogging their adventure. They haven't left yet, but their blog is up and running. Currently they're fishing for comments. So, if you've got a spare minute, click over there and say "Hi".


raych said...

Family time isn't over, it's just lapsed for a bit. Our last family trip was when I was 15. In the last year, though, we've spent all kinds of time together. We three siblings even traipsed up the coast to crash my parents' anniversary getaway. It's almost like you have to get away from everyone for a few years before you can come back and hang out as adults. You need some space in between to distinguish adult-you from child-you.

Anonymous said...

I have no brilliant advice but this post was beautiful. The photos are breathtaking and I loved each one of them.

I enjoy your blog every single day.