Bad News, Illinois…


Last week was a wow week.

Followed by an even better wow weekend.

I hope your Thanksgiving celebrations were fantastic. Let me tell you a little about ours…

Wednesday I got in the car at 9:30 am, and got out of the car at 4:30, Thursday morning. Sure, I had an hour break here and there, and maybe a few 10-15 min breaks, also. But, for the most part, my bum was numb and my legs were restless thanks to the non-stop driving I took part in.

My beebee sis came home from school, so I went with my mom to pick her up from the bus stop. I got to spend some sweet time with her in the car, and I’m already counting down the days until Christmas break, when I will get to see her again. Woo!

Following that trip (a little over two hours one way), I came home and got in the car with my man and proceeded to drive NINE AND HALF HOURS.

Did you catch that?
                             NINE AND HALF HOURS.
                  AT LEAST.


So, you can imagine how those 9.5 hours passed…..
                                    but. every hour was totally worth it.

I’d do it all again in a heartbeat.

We traveled to see our dear, dear friends, and we savored every second of our time with them.

Once we hit their driveway (and I had to restrain myself from kissing the concrete beneath my feet),
          we hit the hay.
My man worked all day Wednesday, and I already told you about my trying day. :)  So, needless to say, we were exhausted and thankful for such a warm, wonderful place to rest. And rest we did. This was our first time visiting them in their new home, but it felt like we belonged. Like we just clicked into place like the missing puzzle piece. You know, that piece you’ve been searching days for, only to find in two rooms away. The one the dog must have picked up off the floor and carried away to discover that it was, in fact, not food, just as you’d been telling her all along. Except a dog wouldn’t be a part of this story… more on that later (oh, Margo… :) ).
But, back to the point – we are the puzzle piece. They are the puzzle. And, oh, how we have longed to be reunited.

So, we woke up to Thanksgiving on Thursday (huh, Thanksgiving on THURSDAY!? weird.)
Thursday was a day to be thankful, for sure.
We met more friends and family than our hearts could handle, and loved it all.
We enjoyed a meal that was INCREDIBLE.
We laughed harder than we thought we could.
We fell in love with family we can’t wait to see again.
And we made to-die-for cookies. Yes. They were fantastic.

Friday we finally got to see what the stories have all been about.
And we loved it!!
We saw old memories, and family homes. We had a dinner with people we can’t wait to see again.
It was a good day. :)

Saturday was a fantastic “friend” day. Just doing what we both love to do. (well, maaaaaybe I love the Christmas decorating a bit more…)
Creating (even if it was just pinecones and ornaments), coffee (and a no-caffeine-involved-mango-smoothie), REEDICULOUSLY cheap salt (not kidding. it was like $.25 for a pound, or something obscene like that), Nertz battle wounds (finally!)…. oh, Saturday, how I long to have you back.
It was a beautiful thing to act as if this was our normal day-to-day, and to forget what the next day meant.

Because the next day was Sunday, and reality hit. We had to leave, and it was so, SO hard to do.

I mentioned how this week/weekend was about pressing our reset buttons,
                                                           and that is what we did.

It’s amazing what 
getting away from the stress of it all, 
and spending time with two people who mean the world to us 
can do.
This time with our lifers reminded us what wonderful blessings we have. We are truly thankful for everything, there’s no doubt. But it was nice to have the opportunity to be reminded and to add countless things and people to the list of blessings we’ve been given.
I’m thankful for an extended family after only one weekend together.
I’m thankful for baby “Purple.”
I’m thankful for having been a part of such a delicious Thanksgiving meal.
I’m thankful for new Pinterest friends.
I’m thankful for Oreos.
And chocolate chip cookies.
And Oreo stuffed chocolate chip cookies.
…. for friends who will be friends for the rest of our lives. That’s so powerful to know and to have.
…. for people who want to share their love of things (like dulcimers!).
…. for my man who is crazy talented and picked up said dulcimer and proceeded to play it like he’d known how all his life.
…. for laughter that makes my ribs hurt.
…. for roots that run deep.
…. for that crazy sense of smell that pregnant people have, because it. can. be. funny. even if it is unfortunate for them. (sorry, K. :) and Tippy apologizes, too, I’m sure.)
…. for turquoise cabinets.
…. for baking with someone who reminds me how much I love it.
…. for card games and word games.
…. for sleeping in.
Holy cow, I could go on forever.
But how boring would that be!?

onto the pictures!

[they played games.]
[we – SHE – made blow-your-mind cookies.]

[I told you, your mind can’t handle it.]

[teacher extraordinaire. for real.]

[vandals. :)]
[oh, look, I was on this trip!]

[take note: this is not a new tree. this tree has been used. for many years.
now, WHY can’t MY tree fit so snug in its box?!
why must it bust at the seams and overflow through the top!?]

[sneaky penguin.]

[breakfast. yum.
now you see it…
…now you don’t. it was scrumdiddlyumptious.]

[oh, mama, you’re too cute.]

[hiya, Margo. this is the closest a dog will come to living in this home, I do believe.]

[pre-attack – you can tell because NO ONE IS BLEEDING! or, are they… darn black and white….]
[sad. :( ]
Seriously, friends, I cried as I posted these pictures. It’s incredible how much two people (oh, wait, THREE!) can mean to us. We would make the trip again tomorrow, we loved every minute. 
Now… if we could just do something to eliminate Illinois.
Yes, that would be a HUGE help.
To B and K (and baby “what’s-her-face” :) ) – 
I know we’ve said it before, but for real, you two are THE reason God opened the door at Southeast.
We struggle with what didn’t come from that time living there, but we want to make sure we never overlook what did come from it.
I don’t know where we would be right now if we didn’t have you both. (and the little baby papaya. :) )
We are so blessed and so thankful. Thank you for inviting us into your world. It BOO OUR MINDS how much we loved it.
And thank you to your families.
We LOVE them!
And, as you know, we love you. We really, truly do.

[btw. check out more here.]

2 thoughts on “Bad News, Illinois…

  1. Okay… you really should not be allowed to post such things!! :'(

    It already seems too long ago…

    We love you guys too and are so thankful for what you have meant and continue to mean to us in our lives. Thanks for making the HUGE effort to drive all the way here. It’s our turn next– oh, and I’ll bring “purple” with me :) Loved all the pictures

    Now I’m going to go dry my eyes.

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