I have a final to be studying for. (Did I tell you that I’m back in school? Well, I am and it is wonderful…) But instead of study today, I can’t stop with the pictures and also all the videos. You see, I miss my Stateside family so much I can hardly breathe. Yes, that still happens--this very particular ache and longing. So to move forward today I have tapped into that which carries me on…memories, prayer, hope.
Here are a few memories holding me today:
The beginning of our furlough, some years ago. We landed in Houston this time. My parents drove all the way from Odessa to help us wrangle the rowdies while we got over jet lag. My memories from this trip are birthday parties, haircuts, Target, Casa Ole', Kinley piercing her ears and the boys racing on luggage carts with Papa. Good times.
This is the joy that is the arrival of Nana and Papa's Christmas box. In our two decades of service in Uganda, Mom has organized oh so many of these boxes (for birthdays too!) We have received boxes through the years from many who love us. We have celebrated and treasured every one!
Kinley loves to crochet. She worked on this project for most of our last furlough. While in Odessa, she always had a rapt supporter of her craft. Miss Priss loved the softness of the yarn and how Kinley’s hands shaped a beautiful pattern. One day Presley kindly offered, “If you need someone to keep that for you when you go back to Uganda I’d be happy to do that…” Daily then Presley would remind Kinley of her offer--“Don’t you want to leave that here with me, Kinley?”
Guess who got it?
I love how these two love each other.
One thing Mom and I do at exactly the same pace is shop. (Somewhere out there my baby sister just rolled her eyes. She also sighed.) I love to shop with my Mom. Mainly because I never have to explain myself. We operate on the, “I don’t want to miss anything…” philosophy of browsing. We can spend an entire day searching for something and leave with nothing. Why? Not sure we could explain it, much to the chagrin of every person in our lives, but with Mom, no explanation needed. We didn’t find IT, but we did look thoroughly. And in that is a degree of satisfaction for us both. This picture is a shopping trip from last furlough. We are with my sister so she kept us on task and we didn't wander the aisles for very long. It was fun but Mom and I went back by ourselves later--we were both just sure we missed something and we needed to look a bit more. Happiness.
When our furlough rolls around, my family plans some sort of trip. We've sweated it out at Sea World, remembered the Alamo, partied it up at Disney World and even enjoyed things closer to home like the sand hills and Carlsbad Caverns. It takes energy to make memories with all these yayhoos:) I'm so thankful for every one!
This was my Presley trip. My amazing husband bought me a ticket to travel all by myself home to Texas so that I could hold baby Presley. This was my second solo trip to Texas that year and such a blessing.
This picture just makes me happy.
My Mam-ma and Granddaddy's house.
Another generation sharing food in that precious home.
We decorated the tree and Papa was playing and singing.
Good, good stuff.
And finally--somewhere in all the photos I've perused today I uncovered these gems that I had completely forgotten about. They have turned this day around for me. My Mom videoed these on that same furlough that began in Houston. One video is a bit dark because most of my family had already fallen asleep (jet lag) but someone was still energized and chatty.
And, so, without further ado, on the topics of raising children, racing and Elvis (but of course!) I give you Silas....
May your day be blessed friends!
And a very happy birthday to my Mom!