Thursday, November 12, 2009

This Is Just a Good Day

In the movie Charly, there is a montage moment of Sam's family enjoying a picnic in a glorious summer evening. Charly, new to such familial harmony says incredulously to Sam's mother, "Is it always like this?" His mother laughs, of course, and says, "Naw. This is just a good day."

I think life is like that. A lot of day to day just slogging away to put money in the bank, food on the table and knowledge into the kids. Even our spiritual lives get routine--go to church, do my calling, read my scriptures, yada, yada, yada.

And then, in the midst of the routine come these glorious bursts of sunrise moments that illuminate the whole purpose for being sent to earth. I once made a list of perfect days, and have even posted about them here from time to time. Halloween weekend was just such a time for us. I can't really say a day, because it was more of a 48 hour stretch, but it was perfect.

I'll do a brief recap here and give my excellent Father-in-law kudos for these fantastic pictures.

My oldest son was baptized the weekend of Halloween and my in-laws, my parents and my grandmother came into town to help us celebrate. We were a cozy bunch for a few days, but it was worth every minute. When everyone made it in by Friday afternoon, the first stop we made was at the apple orchard. This yearly tradition is a favorite of all the kids. We only picked enough apples to eat this year; we are still working our way through last year's applesauce.

After the pumpkin patch we went to PF Chang's. The kids were, well, how you expect them to behave at a restaurant! But at least I had the foresight to get a reservation so that we avoided waiting and waiting to be seated. My two year-old, overwhelmed with all the company, wouldn't leave mom's side voluntarily all weekend. I think he said mom or mommy 157 times, at least.

Saturday morning was Jedi Knight's baptism. He looked stellar in his birthday suit. Uh, that is, the suit we bought him for his birthday. We try not to leave the house in the other birthday suit. It was a special day, and despite eight kids to be baptized, the service was smooth and reverent, and done in just a little over an hour. It was a cool fall day, but not wet, so we were able to get some nice pictures in front of our stake center. I think these pictures will be memorable to Jedi both for the day, but also for the place. Where else but Oregon would you get your pictures taken in front of a veritable forest of Japanese maples? (Right, Japan.)



Grandmothers (and a brother who can't stand to be left out!)

Paternal Grandparents

Maternal Grandparents (and a brother that can't stand to be left out; look at him kissing up to grandma!)

Would be a 4 generation picture if Jedi's mother had been smart enough to hop in!

We worked very hard to do little of anything that Saturday. I went shopping with my mom, grandmother and mother-in-law. The girl time was very good for me. I reflected on what it might be like to have only boys, but then I realized that two of the relationships in our group were daughters-in-law. (My mom and myself.) I think when there is enough love and respect in a family, maybe it doesn't matter if you are related by blood.

After a big dinner of chili and chicken chowder and my mother's homemade bread sticks, we all settled in to watch the Oregon-USC game. I think most of the neighborhood did too; trick-or-treating didn't really pick up until half-time. (Go Ducks! What a fantastic game THAT was.) Eventually the Jedi couldn't be off any longer, and even the Youngling, who had resisted every prior attempt at costuming, had to get in on the fun. We found an old robe for him and a scrap from the big boy's robes for his waist.

Youngling trick or treating

Neighbor's pumpkins. Aren't they cool? Ours were a little bit weak in comparison. It is, after all, a competition.

Grandma reading to the little Jedi

How cool is THIS shot for Halloween?

The Jedi in full regalia. Jedi Knight on the left, Padawan on the right.

Yeah, I made those robes. I'm mother of the year. Well, not really, that award goes to my sweet and patient neighbor who talked me through them.

Sunday was a lovely day. I so seldom get to be in church with my parents anymore that those rare occasions are really so priceless. Plantboy gave Jedi Knight such a nice blessing during his confirmation and my heart was deeply touched. How blessed we are to have families!

My parents had to leave late Sunday afternoon in order to be in Utah for my dad's business Monday afternoon. My in-laws stayed a couple of days longer. The weather on Monday was beautiful and we spent the afternoon at the park.

Looking for planes

These little guys are constantly in motion and grandpa's camera had the shutter speed to keep up. I love the second. I almost think that Padawan can fly. It is amazing that kids survive childhood.

All in all, it was a weekend not to be forgotten. I'm grateful for so many wonderful things just now. As we enter the next phase--the big kid/tweenie phase of our child-rearing years--I have such a mixture of optimism and anxiety. I love my eight year-old more than ever and I appreciate that we are starting to be friends instead of just mother and son. I think this picture is a perfect snapshot of everything that transpired during the weekend. Thanks, Jedi, for coming to our family.


Melanie said...

Congratulations Jedi (and his mom and dad for raising him right thus far)! I had a perfect Halloween weekend too; it's important to record and remember the good days.

mstanger said...

Suits for little guys are awesome. Just a few years and he'll be slipping a black name tag onto the front left pocket.

chris w said...

Those beautiful times really do make it all worthwhile.
Congrats to Jedi and to you guys for the sweet milestone.

Jenny said...

He's PERFECT. Thanks for sharing your happy place--in a few quick years you'll treasure this post (and so will he).

Sunnie said...

what a great weekend! he looks so handsome in his suit. love the costumes and all the pics. and so great to have family in town. that makes everything more special.

Dickey said...

OH MY GOODNESS. Your boys are adorable.

Yankee Girl said...

Congrats! What a lovely weekend. And I love the birthday suit.

CaLM RAPIDS said...

What a very sweet weekend. Memorable forever. LOVE that last picture and how much your boys are growing up!