What we thought was going to be a very ordinary day at our home turned into quiet the fun and exciting one!! As I've mentioned, July24th is a state holiday, the day the pioneers arrived in the Salt Lake Valley in 1847. It's like having two July 4ths in one month! The fireworks went off all night long! Parades, picnics, you name it. However, Doug's company doesn't celebrate the state holiday, so he worked. We never make plans for the day and usually try to have a BBQ for dinner. The kids planned on swimming and I planned on making dinner to take down to Mom's since they are loading up her moving truck.
Although she never wants my food (she eats it when I bring it to her, but will never come here for dinner...not even Thanksgiving), I told her that I was going to bring dinner down to her, since there was nothing else I could do to help with the move. My brother, Rick is in town to help, so my help is not needed at all. I'm so glad that she has Rick. (Sarcasm intended.)
I ran to the grocery store bright and early and put a pork roast into the crock pot with plans for pulled pork BBQ sandwiches, fresh fruit, a cabbage salad and sauteed zuchinni for Mom's dinner. No sooner than I began cooking, our grandson, Jason's dad, Dave was calling to see if we were busy because they were in town and I said, "Come on over!"
And our day began! I was cooking when friend Julie and her beautiful little daughter, Ava arrived with a very large delivery of hand-me-downs things for Zaylee and my girls. Julie is my friend, Katie's younger sister, who I just adore and have gotten to know through Facebook and Katie's stories over the years. We had a good visit while I was chopping and prepping food until Dave and Katie arrived. Katie had sent half a closet of awesomeness for the girls and Julie and Eva for Zaylee. SO SWEET!
Dave and Katie and the kids arrived and within five minutes, all of the kids were in the pool together. With Doug at work, we sat and visited and ate and drank Diet Cokes and ate and ate and cooked and ate some more. The entire day was spent in the kitchen. And the menu got larger and larger. Since they'd been to a July 24th breakfast in their old neighborhood, they arrived full. Dave went to Wendy's and got a late lunch. I'd never tried that grilled chicken and apple salad at Wendy's but it's a new favorite! Wow! They'd never had a "real" Dirty Diet Coke, so we ended up having quite the experience with them! They were a huge hit! I need to order more Coconut Syrup! At some point, we were talking about southern food and I ended up making Hush Puppies. They were a major hit! And even in the heat, worth the effort of standing over the frypan. Suffice it to say, we all probably gained five pounds at dinner!
Doug came home from work and we called Stott and Wendy to come over and visit with Miki. Miki walked into the house and ran straight to Zaylee, they hugged and hugged and were inseparable for the rest of the afternoon. This was a treat for Doug and I to have Jason, Zaylee and Miki together all at once! It was Grandparents Day for us! It was fun to watch both families getting to know each other and seeing all of the kids play together, as well as having all three families bonding .
One of my most favorite moments of the day was seeing Zaylee and Miki race off to the tire swing. Zaylee pushed Miki and the two of them were just giggling up a storm. Zaylee makes sure that everyone knows that she is the oldest.
I called Mom and invited her and Rick her to come over for a few minutes. She came down in a bit and "entertained" us with her stories for an hour or so. I thought it was important to take a picture of her with the three great-grands because it's a good chance that it will be the only chance for that photo opportunity again. As the kids were saying hi to Nana, Zaylee said, "Nana, that's Jason. He was my brother when he was a baby." We were all surprised that she knew this. Jason quickly responded, "Actually, I'm still her brother." I was glad for my mom to have that moment with the kids before she moves away.
Rick didn't come with Mom, but later in the afternoon, he did come to the front door and say, "Tell the kids to come out here for a minute." I invited him inside and he could see that we had a room full of people, so he didn't really have a choice. He came inside, introduced himself as "the black sheep of the family", said, "I'm sure she's told you lots of bad things about me" (awwwkward) then he told the kids that he probably won't be up here for a long time. He was introduced to Jason, hugged my kids and Zaylee and was out the door. I didn't get a hug or much more of an acknowlegement than those few words. Sad for Rick. He's missing out on so much of life because he holds onto so much anger toward me for loving our dad. PS Rick, Dad wasn't even here. Let it go.
The house was loud and crazy all day long! My good friend, Kara, dropped by with a gift bag filled with "activities" for Zaylee. Even with all of the company, Zaylee had to sit right down and color for a bit. Within seconds, even Grace had joined in coloring. Kara was inspired in her thoughtfulness because that USA puzzle was the only remaining toy of Zaylee's that I'd not taken over to Kelly's a few weeks ago. There were some learning books with numbers and alphabet, which Zaylee is going to need to be relearning now that she's here!
She truly is feeling the love from so many people. After everyone was gone, the house was back "together" and quiet when I was the only one awake... It was a tender mercy that this "unplanned" day had come together so sweetly into such an awesome crazy busy noisy day. From visitors with thoughtful gifts for Zaylee to a house full of kids who are siblings/cousins/aunties and Quayd the uncle (go figure, I know)... Zaylee, this sweet little girl feels the love of family. Uncle Stott went out and pushed her on the swing, Uncle Dave teased with her, all of the kids playing together. And my very most favorite moment, Doug walked in from work just as Kara was giving Zaylee her gift. "GRAMPY!!!!!!!" and she raced to give him a hug. We joked, "Grampy trumps presents!" How awesome is that, though?
It turned out to be a perfect day, without any planning, without matching paper goods, without any planning at all. I told Dave and Katie that they'd probably never believe my tablescapes are real because they got it right out of the pans, paper plates of all sizes and kinds and not a piece of serving ware to be seen!
Today, I "get to" have my annual physical. I plan on spending most of my time talking with Barry about ZJ's situation. Following that, a quick lunch with Doug, our "big meeting" with DCFS to get more details of what our future holds. Liza and Buddy will be on Conference Call for the meeting. Late this afternoon, a much anticipated sleepover with five girls (four teens and one four year old). We don't do sleepovers unless it is with the B's. But, the girls have begged all summer and worked hard to earn this one. Doug also has a scout committee meeting in our home tonight. Never a dull moment, just the way we like it...boredom is not a word spoken in our home very often!
It was a super day! Life is good... one filled with love, laughs and a lot of calories!
EDITED TO ADD: I had written this entry last night before going to bed when I received one of those late night phone calls that you never want to get. Doug's sister and husband were in a serious car accident on their way home to Idaho from visiting their son. Both required surgery. Doug's youngest sister (who's a nurse) and I hung up at 1AM after getting any details that we could. I waited to tell Doug when he woke up at 4 because I knew he'd never get back to sleep. Our thoughts and prayer quickly focus on Anne and Bob, for their challenge is much larger than ours at the moment. LIFE CHANGES IN A MOMENT!!!
I'd written this this morning and hit the road running. Now, it's six and I thought I'd hit post. Gee, you'd think I had a few things on my mind. Oops!
You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.