Hello and Goodbye

Mike and I came back from the cruise and were able to enjoy a week together before our four kids (plus Matt as a counselor) returned from the summer camp they attend every year. But what a whirlwind week it was, as the NFL Lockout was lifted and the ensuing frenzy that took place before all 32 teams could begin training camp by week’s end. Aside from the mayhem, we were given a week together that seemed particularly precious this year. We loved the cruise, with the romance of the Mediterranean in the air, but spending a week at home without the kids felt unusually special. Normally, home is somewhat my domain ~ not in a hard and fast boundary drawing kind of way, but in a loosely understood sort of agreement. So having him around this week to join me at the grocery store (I spent double) and running errands and stopping for ice cream felt a little like we were newlyweds again. As Saturday came to a close, I could see the football playbook in his mind taking its August place ~ front and center ~ and I was ready to say hello again to football. All packed for training camp:

Having the kids back home meant saying goodbye to our honeymoon state, goodbye to peace and quiet, goodbye to appointment-free days, and hello to my laundry room. Actually, I’d probably say it more like, ”UGH…hi”.

  

But one of the best hello’s was when Brooklynne met her Uncle Matt for the first time:

  

And sadly, we’ve said goodbye to three special people this week…a friend and peer of mine who was gripped by cancer and a friend and peer of Matt’s, at the hand of senseless violence, were both taken far too early from this world. A sweet neighbor and friend, while older than the others, was suddenly taken out of this world leaving her family in sadness and shock. 

I’m thankful for the time I had this summer; thankful for the health of my parents and the safety of our family as we travelled here and abroad. I do my best to never take those moments for granted, but this week I’m especially grateful for the gift of family members to love and to cherish.

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