Friday, March 4, 2016

Life Goes On

Life DOES go on after you lose a loved one.  There have been many times when I just wanted the world to stop so we could all just focus on grieving for Les.  I don't want everyone to forget about him!  But I am realizing that yes, life does go on.  We all have great memories of Les and we will cherish them.

My parents celebrated their 60th anniversary on February 29.  They got married on a leap day! Mom decided at the "last minute" to have a small open house last Saturday.  My two sisters decided to fly up for a couple of days, and my younger brother drove over.  We ended up having a really nice afternoon with some family and some of their friends (MOST of their friends are all south in the sun!!).  What a blessing to be able to celebrate so many years together!  5 children, 16 grandchildren, 21 great-grands - and I'm sure there will be many more! Also makes me sad -- Les and I should have had 25 more years together, but.... Life goes on........

Missing our oldest brother Dan!
They were 18 and 19 on their wedding day!!
Brett and Leslie had their second little boy recently.  He is Preston Lucas and he is a cutie!  Les knew they were having a boy; so fun for them to have two little guys.  They are doing well and K-man is being a great big brother.  Life goes on..........

Little Dallas JOY is still as cute as ever.  I care for her every Wednesday - it is a very busy day!  Hank the dog usually comes with her.  My puppy Dutch wants so badly to play, play, play - but Hank usually isn't too interested.  I think that Hank still really misses Les.  He isn't too happy being in this house.  I am SO GLAD I got a new puppy.  Dutch gets me up in the morning and he keeps me hopping throughout the day!  Life goes on..........

I am doing okay.  I've had a few tough weeks over the past several months.  One was around Valentine's Day.  Not sure if it was the time of year (dreary and wet) or just all the talk about love.  I was remembered that day by some sweet friends Daniel & Traci and also some little girls from my church.  I am looking forward to longer days - those long winter evenings are SO LONG!  There is lots of work to do outside, but I just do what I can.  I cleaned the gutters for the first time ever.  I went from feeling sorry for myself to being proud of myself!  Les did all the heavy spring work - but I will learn.  I am hoping neighbor Dan and neighbor Mark let me know when I'm supposed to be putting something on the lawn with that little spreader thing........

I received a tree from the UPS family when Les died.  I wasn't ready to plant it then - too big of a decision!  Recently I asked if the UPS friends still wanted to plant it.  I knew my boys would do it, but Gunnar insisted they still would.  They came last Sunday and planted it by Les' "river" that he had built in our back yard.  Gunnar shared some special words (see below).  I look forward to watching that little tree spread and grow and always remind me of the UPS bond Les had with these people.
Les' Tree:
It's roots are anchored in faith and family, providing shade in the heat and cover in the rain.
It's a gathering place to reflect on his impact on us and in spring remind us of the beauty he brought to our lives.
It's a great honor to be a part of this planting and, Karen, when you look out your window I hope you'll not only be reminded of what a great man Les was, but also the bond we all formed through Les' illness.

Life goes on.