Friday, August 30, 2013

Ramblings and an 8 year marriage.

                          ^^^ Lars is clearly thinking one thing here- it starts with a p and ends in an s. ^^^

so a while ago i went to a MOPS meeting. i went twice and never got back there. I should have, but   dune and lars were little and i was too busy, and well now in a week i'll have all the free time in the world to go to MOPS, so ya know, at the time i never went back. but that one time i did go i met my friend Amanda. i was meant to be at MOPS that day for one reason and one reason alone. to meet Amanda. the heavens parted and we began to talk and we were saying weird things like, "am i you, and are you me?" we were finishing each other's sentences and talking all hyper and we were just so so happy to have met! we are kindred spirits and God totally did that. yep, God gets our weird sense of humor, our sensitive souls, our need for the gritty side of things, and he gave us each other as new friends.

it's great being in my thirties and meeting friends that feel like we've gone through a bit of life together. her husband is great and her kids are adorable. it worked out really well that way. hee hee.

today we met at Storm King Art Center to walk, talk, and let the kids run freeeeee.

anyway and completely unrelated, this weekend Jonathan and I are celebrating our wedding anniversary, which is actually next week, but falls on Dune and Lars' first day of preschool. and since i will be a hot mess that day and in no desire to get dressed or talk, we are going to indulge this weekend.

we've been married for eight years, and if you've been reading this blog for any amount of time, or you know me outside of this internet thing, you know it's been no walk in the park. we've stumbled more than we haven't. we've hung on at times by a teensy weak thread. we've had real conversations where we've said things like, "Maybe this should just end." ouch. so why would i tell this to you? because i believe in marriage. and i believe in us. and i believe that i love him more now than ever. more than i could have ever thought i could love anyone. because i wake up every day and decide that staying with him is the best choice in this world. and because i want to one day celebrate a lot more than just 8 years.

jonathan, though we are weak, He is strong and isn't that just so true? isn't that so how we are making it through this life together? i would walk through fire a thousand more times if it draws you closer to our Savior, our King. i love you and thank you. thank you for not settling for what you were but rising up and leading this family as a man that we can be so proud of to call "ours". thank you for forgiving me and teaching me how to forgive. thank you for loving both the lovable and unlovable things about me. i really can't wait to spend a crazy night with you this weekend running around too late, and having a few too many drinks, laughing till our sides hurt, and getting wild. or maybe we'll just get take out and fall asleep early on the couch because we are so exhausted. that will be alright too. ;) happy anniversary babe.

“...We must say to ourselves something like this: 'Well, when Jesus looked down from the cross, he didn't think "I am giving myself to you because you are so attractive to me." No, he was in agony, and he looked down at us - denying him, abandoning him, and betraying him - and in the greatest act of love in history, he STAYED. He said, "Father, forgive them, they don't know what they are doing." He loved us, not because we were lovely to him, but to make us lovely. That is why I am going to love my spouse.' Speak to your heart like that, and then fulfill the promises you made on your wedding day.” - 
Timothy Keller

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Random thoughts and other things.

something i simply can not get over is that all three of these little birds will be either starting school or going back to school in less than two weeks. my heart just can't wrap around that idea.

yesterday we went to Bear Mountain and spent a glorious day in the sunshine, soaking up these last bits of summer. we've gone on many adventures together these past two months and i'll miss my buddies.

there are a few more things i'd like to slip in before they head to school. there are still some adventures that await.

i'm not ready for fall but the Earth says otherwise. the tips of the maples in our front yard are already flirting with the color red. the leaves on the ground tell me it's coming.

our garden knows it too. i picked a pumpkin the other day and the kids dug out bucket full of potatoes from the ground. the sunflowers are all hanging heavy and the tomatoes are at their peak. summer is wrapping up.

herbs are drying all over the kitchen and batches of soups are being frozen for the colder months.

i have a PET scan in two weeks. this year will be three years. three years since i had my first clean scan, the scan that said the cancer had left.

jonathan and i have an anniversary coming up as well. 8 years of everyday waking up and saying, "i still do."

regardless of being ready or not, change comes and is inevitable. i guess my confidence lies in the preparedness of it all. my kids entering school for the first time. preserving garden goodies for upcoming months. a body that i work hard to keep healthy. and a marriage that i value and keep sacred.

"There is a crushing joy that crackles in every corner of this world. I am tiny and yet I am here. I have been given senses, awareness, existence, and placed on a stage so crowded with the vast, so teeming with the tiny, that I can do nothing but laugh, and sometimes laugh and cry. Living makes dying worth it." -N.D. Wilson

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Coney Island, Part Two.

so many good memories from last weekend. dune hanging at muscle beach? priceless. my favorite part of our whole trip was walking the boardwalk back to the car and the kids convincing us to let them go swimming in their clothes. when we said yes they literally took off, flinging their shoes in the sand and just ran right into the water. the smiles, the laughing, the sheer look of thrill on their little faces. the sky was that 6 pm brilliant bright casting sparkles all across the ocean. dune kept running up to me and giving me salty kisses and the more grossed out i acted, the harder he laughed. he kissed me a dozen times and every time i acted like it got worse and worse and he laughed more and more. i can see lars now running up to me, "mama, my pants are fallin' down!" and breaking out in hysterical laughter. and graycen gloriously throwing her body about in the waves as happy as a clam. guys, i don't know how i got here. i really don't. i know somewhere along the lines things were really hard and i was really sick and i was a single mother for a while, and it was a long season of pain and heartbreak. but sometime after that, it started to fade. those really hard days just seem to get further and further away. and one day i woke up and it was better than it ever was. better than i could have ever imagined.

i'm so thankful that when i was sick with cancer that God didn't decide to just do a little renovation on my life. i'm really so happy that He knew to just come in with a giant crane and tear the whole thing to smithereens. my heart rejoices in going forward in a godly marriage that refines me and defines me and that these little eyes and ears and hearts can grow in response to that. i thank God for giving me these years with them. i'll never not be thankful. for all of it.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Coney Island, Part One.

brooklyn hasn't left me. it's the place i lived right before i started the chapter of my life with jonathan. brooklyn changed me.

 we had made plans to go to lake george with my in laws for the weekend. after some minor issues with our car and a leaking basement from the rain storm on thursday we decided to reschedule our date with the adirondacks and stay local. we decided on coney island instead.

we woke up early saturday morning and grabbed some coffee and headed out to brooklyn. being in brooklyn for me is always filled with nostalgia and magic. i lived there right before i met jonathan. he lived there too for a time, so the two of us have a bit of brooklyn fever and when we're there we both become filled with this "brooklyn-ness". jonathan has spent more time there over the last few years, working there occasionally and bringing me home vegan donuts from Williamsburgh every now and then (love him for doing that!). so on saturday, you can imagine what we were like. graycen loves hearing the stories of my cab rides home from manhattan late at night, riding the subway, walking 5 flights of stairs and rooming with my best friend back in my early 20's. those stories will never get old to her.

this part of brooklyn is especially fantastic. you reach a certain distance and all you smell is salt water and funel cakes. you see miles of sailboats and huge homes with giant menorahs out front. bodegas line the streets like trees do here in the hudson valley. and i couldn't love it any more.

we took the kids to the NY Aquarium, parking right under The Cyclone roller coaster. the kids climbed out of the car, looking up, overly excited by the screams of the people riding the ride. we spent our time walking through the aquarium, watching the sea lion show, which made me tear up i might add. we were educated on the effects of super storm sandy last year, and how that whole area has been rebuilding and fixing the damage and will continue to for years to come. after the aquarium we walked to Nathan's hot dogs, the original Nathan's. it opened as a little hot dog stand in coney island in 1916, and all these years later we stood in line and placed our order. after we ate we walked the boardwalk, we took the kids on some rides, (more on that tomorrow) and finally ended the day by letting the kids swim in the ocean with their clothes on.

you know those moments, the ones where you feel you are in the middle of one of your best memories? you try and stand still long enough to remember the feeling of the sticky air on your skin along with the smell of hot dogs in the air, the noise of carnival music in the background and your kids running wild and free and happy. the memories of brooklyn got greater for me on saturday because i had my family with me. if you had told me as a young 22 year old girl, standing in coney island with $5 to my name, watching fireworks on the beach on that friday night with my best friend, if you had told me then what i know now i wouldn't have believed it. but just like what makes coney island so wonderful, the most unbelievable stories happen to be my favorite. and this is definitely part of my favorite story.

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