Hope you all had a great Fourth of July weekend! Richard came into town on Saturday and we had to drive the older three to AL for camp on Sunday, so we sort of hung back with the younger two Monday and took it easy. We took the two still at home to our pool, where there was free food, several vendors, way too many people and a DJ blaring songs of which 99% were completely inappropriate. For whatever reason he threw Sweet Home Alabama (in UGA land ... go figure!) so that accounted for the 1%. It was fun for the girls and Kate LOVED showing her Daddy how she has learned to swim underwater. Other than that, it was a little over the top and we were more than satisfied with only spending two hours of our day there. The best part of our 4th, to me, was the 20 minutes I spent in the blazing sun throwing the football with Richard. Richard and I have spent many hours talking while throwing the baseball or football. I could literally throw back and forth to Richard all day long. It is one of my most favorite things to do and I miss it so much when he's gone.
Richard left this morning ... and we almost didn't think we'd make his flight! We pulled up ... both got out ... he to get his backpack from the trunk and I got out to get in the driver's seat. When I walked around to the other side of the van, he was gone. Just like that. There were so many people dropping off and picking up ... cars everywhere from the long weekend, I suppose ... he just seemed to be gone in a flash. That struck me as appropriate. Just like that he was here and just like that he was gone. It reminded me that I woke up this morning and it was Tuesday. Just like that the weekend was over, and the life I'm most familiar with had returned.
I got back in the van, squeezed my way back into the insane Atlanta traffic and headed home. I had some errands to run, care packages to mail the girls at camp and lunch to get for Kate and Olivia. It is now the afternoon and I'm drinking my usual cup of afternoon coffee and getting ready to take Kate to swim lessons. Then we'll eat dinner, get baths, read stories and I'll put them to bed. Maybe then I'll catch up on the laundry from the weekend, get some bills ready to mail and plan my day for tomorrow.
Richard and I listened to a couple of Coach Saban's speeches on Youtube yesterday afternoon while the girls were napping. One thing he said that caught my ear was that (and I'm paraphrasing) "life was hard, but you gotta play the next play." That is so true. We had a great weekend, but it is Tuesday and Richard is gone. That play is over and time to move on to the next one.
Okay, obviously this was a post I started on but never finished. It's actually not a hundred degrees outside with a hundred percent humidity, so the girls are OUT and I have a bit of time to catch up on some things.
As I read this post, I think about how it's just been ten days since Richard left (again), but it seems like an eternity ago. It always does:). Looking at the above photo, I am so reminded of exactly how I felt when I took it. "Why can't we just have a normal life where we go out to eat up the street at the local pizza restaurant on Fridays?" I get insanely depressed sometimes when I hear friends or family saying they went out to eat or to just get some ice cream. Well, not really depressed:), but a little discouraged. I know that no one has a perfect life and I'm sure that simple family time like this can be easily taken for granted if it is the norm ... but still, I enjoy it so much and just think about our oldest who was just starting Kindergarten when war became a daily part of our life. When Richard is done with this current assignment she'll be in High School. Just sort of makes me ache a little for what we didn't get to do.
BUT God is good and we have had a zillion blessings and wonderful memories:)! He always more than provides and as Richard reminds me when I need to be reminded, His plans are not always what I would have planned ... but they are better. I've not pinpointed exactly how some of those plans are better:), but I can pinpoint ways He has provided. As I opened my blinds this morning in the dining room I looked out into my beautifully mowed yard. I didn't mow it. I didn't hire someone to mow it. I didn't even ask someone to mow it. Yet it was mowed. God has provided selfless neighbors who see my need and don't hesitate to fulfill it. And there are so many more provisions just like that. One thing I struggle almost daily with here is the lack of a unit with which to be connected. I have a huge need for encouragement from someone in my same shoes. I'm female ... if you're female, you get that. God designed us that way. From an early age boys can go to the restroom alone. Girls need someone to go with them. We're just that way. So I have a need ... I see no way for God to provide and yet, you guessed it, He has! If you're connected to me via FB, you've seen my link to this new blog. For those of you not connected that way, here it is. This is going to be an amazing blog to follow. I think for military couples it will be so beneficial, yet I think civilians can gain an insight like never before into what we experience. It is written by the husband and the wife. The link I'm posting will take you to the wife's page. At the top of it you can click over to the husband's page. I don't know this couple. I don't know what this blog will be like over the next year. But the two posts I've read have hit both my heart and Richard's in a powerful way. I have already been so encouraged by knowing I have this connection ... even though it is so indirect! I praise God for providing yet again.
Here's the link ...