It has been a whirlwind couple of weeks, so it is possible that you and I have missed a bit of the life that has flown by. Yes, even me! Here's a quick recap, InstaLife story style, because . . . children be crazy.
"Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop & look around once in a while you could miss it." Name that movie!
Fr. Sal has been assigned to our parish as associate pastor, and we finally got to see him at the beginning of July! I have known Fr. Sal for many-a-moon - from the time he was in discernment and maybe a little before. We are so excited to have a friend as a pastor, and unbeknownst to him, have many plans for Fr. Sal. Shhh. Don't tell.
The husband's grandma turned 96 around the Fourth of July, so we all got together for some cake and food and all that jazz. This is her with five of her many great-grandchildren. I cannot imagine all the things she has seen and experienced. Maybe this will be the year we convince her to tell all her stories so we can record them for the generations to come.
What happens when you are getting ready to go out of town for multiple trips? Oh, not much other than your car starting to billow smoke as you drive to work. There I was, approaching the stop sign to cross a major road on my way to work, and my super sniffer started to detect something smoky. I figured it was a car with a rotten exhaust until I looked up to see wafts of white smoke steaming out from under the hood. Luckily I was at the stop sign, so I jumped out of the car and called for help. I'll spare you all the panicked details, but the short story is that a hose was busted and we needed to visit a car doctor. A somewhat quick tow and few smackaroos later (though luckily the van is still under its extended warranty), she was good as new. Well, until I drove her to work to see more smoke coming from under the hood. It turns out that was normal after the work that had been done and it was just a momentary thing. Phew! I will say that every time I smell something a little off, the pulse does start to race a little.
So I have a picture to go with this, but I will spare you. Let's just say the night before I was leaving on the first leg of vacation (Edel) the boy emptied the contents of his stomach on our floor. I wasn't the only one who had such "mishaps" leading up to the gathering. Clearly the devil was getting scared. He should have been. Kelly was about to tell us to punch satan in the face! I'll leave you with a beautiful photo of Kelly instead of the "other image."
After a smokin' car and a puking boy, I was finally off to the Edel Gathering. I've already written a recap of my experience there so I won't wax on about the three days here. It was a beautiful time of bringing to life friendships that had developed behind the screens, coming to know better who God has created me to be, and making some connections that seem to point toward what God is asking of me in the time to come.
I was also privileged to lead a group of women as we prayed in front of the Emmaneul AME church. While I am disappointed that I was so focused on keeping the sun from melting my skin, it was perhaps fortunate because the sheer emotion of all that had happened there would have rendered me incapable of leading prayer. This was an authentic example of how #RealLoveWins, y'all. Grace and mercy conquer hate and violence.
After that amazing getaway, I woke up to reality when I came home. Glamorous, no? One morning with the kids and then off to work, then home for dinner, then the kids went to Nonna's. The next morning we were off to Grand Rapids. Lunch with someone from high school, a visit to the Ford Presidential Museum (which was free because it was his birthday), an event with Fr. Barron where we got to have dinner with him, and then back home again. Whirl to the wind!
We end this crazy ride through the last couple of weeks with my mom's surgery. Thank you for all those who have been praying for her. She went in for a reverse shoulder replacement, and the surgery was uneventful. She is recovering now, and we pray that it will be quick and easy. It is also bringing to light a lot of buried issues between us, so prayers for me through this time would be much appreciated as well. Mostly that I can stop being a petulant child and give her the care she needs. Less of me, Lord, less of me. It's gonna be a tough battle, y'all. What does your adult relationship with your mom look like? Any tips?
Until next time, let's get out there and love 'em like Jesus!
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