We have all heard or possibly even experienced vacations that are SO tightly scheduled, so full of activity, that when you return to ‘normal’ life, you need a vacation from the vacation! Even our day to day lives get that way. We get up early, go to the gym, work out, run home to shower and get ready for work, rush out the door, drop the kids off to the sitters, school or one of a 1000 activities that we schedule to keep THEM busy, run to Starbucks or Java Joe’s to get our morning ‘go juice’ and run into work. While at work we weed through 100 emails, 10 voice mails and attend a day full of meetings or planning sessions. You have to stay late to get at least SOME work done, so you leave work at 6pm, run through and get some carry-out to take home to the family. Once home you realize the civic organization that you’re involved in to keep yourself ‘well rounded’ has it’s monthly meeting at 6:30pm, so you dash back out to attend the meeting and finally…after a long day…you get home. The kids are in bed…you haven’t seen them except for the 5 minutes you were home between work and the meeting. Your spouse is getting ready for bed too, unless of course they are already there…never seems to be enough time in the day…when will it be time for your family? Society teaches us that we’re doing this for the betterment of our families that we should work harder…longer…more intensely so that we can provide a better life. When faced with a choice, do you think that little Jimmy would prefer cathedral ceilings or mom reading a book to him? Does sally care more for her own bathroom with a vanity or time spent cuddling with daddy? When will we realize that our kids don’t care about the BMW or the hardwood floors? What they want…what they NEED is our time…our un-filtered, un-divided time & love! It’s something SO simple and it requires so little effort on our part…and yet, ALL of us miss that message at times.
This past weekend wasn’t even in the same league as the above scenario, but it was busy! I had the pleasure of taking Lisa down to Iowa to introduce her to my family. After all of the initial introductions, we sat and chatted, shared stories and laughed! Everyone was kind and extended Lisa a very warm welcome! You have to realize how significant that is, as I’m the youngest and my three older sisters have ALWAYS taken it upon them selves to be my protectors (yeah…I’m 44 and they STILL feel like I need to be protected!). I jest, but I am truly thankful for my family and the love and support they have shown my kids, I and now Lisa! The next morning, Donna and my step-mother Dee planned a brunch and my brother John even drove up from Cedar Rapids to attend and meet Lisa! Again, we talked and laughed and Lisa even played the piano while we sang praise songs.
Now, this is where love separates from true love and just regular love…you see, I and the kids had another event to attend. We had plans to go to Cedar Rapids, meet Amy’s family for supper, a baseball game and to spend the night at Sara and Dennis’s new home in Marion! Lisa was a real trooper and stayed behind with my family…boy is SHE brave! Actually, I know she really hit it off with my sisters and I’m sure they shared some of my secrets with her! When we got down to Cedar Rapids, we met everyone at Buffalo Wild Wings for supper. I think we had close to 22 or 23 people in all and it was nice to see everyone again! The Cedar Rapids Kernels lost, but it was a close game and the fireworks afterwards were very nice. By the time we got back to their house, it was after 11pm and time to get my kids to bed. We had kids and adults spread all over the floors up and downstairs and everyone brought an inflatable mattress to sleep on. In the morning, Sara prepared a wonderful breakfast of fruit, muffins, lil’ smokies, and French toast (yum!). We left right after breakfast as I still had a long day ahead of me with going back to Cedar Falls, dropping off Vinny and Hope (for a couple of days with my family), picking up Lisa and traveling back to Baraboo. Once back in Baraboo, I dropped off Brittany and Trevor and took Lisa back up to Sparta where she left her vehicle for the weekend. I finally rolled back home around 8:30pm…a VERY long day