Saturday, March 15, 2008

Everyone home and accounted for

The past eight weeks have flown by and Joey is home for Spring Break. All weeklong, the rest of us have been looking forward to this day. Even Luke and Emily both expressed that they missed him and couldn't wait to see him! These are the same two kids that were so excited to get their hands on the Playstation, glad that it was down to just two of them. Yesterday, Emily mused, "I wonder what he'll look like? Will I recognize him?" My mind flew back to his trip to Europe, sophomore year, when he came home with a piercing. (He already had an ear pierced, but this was larger and something that I told him, no way, no how, not now.) Since Joe has his own blog now, I have to be careful not to tell tales on him -- retribution and all. But, suffice it to say, when I talked to him on the phone last week and he asked, "So, are you picking me up at the airport or just Dad?" I asked back, "Why, did you get something pierced?" He assured me that he was coming home as he had left, without any new body decorations and we did laugh about it. So this afternoon, we all piled into the van -- Dan, me, the two kids and the two dogs, and headed off to the airport to get him. (And Emily did recognize him, right away -- funny girl). I had a pork loin cooking in the crockpot, so when we got home it was just about ready. It feels great to have all the kids at home again. All three of them "helping" at once in the kitchen, bumping into each other, stealing pieces of meat off the platter while I'm trying to finish up the potatoes, heat the vegetables in the microwave, get someone to fill the water glasses. It's amazing how the house can seem so empty and then again so full by the absence or presence of just one person. When we sat around the table and joined hands for grace, I held on just a little bit longer after saying "amen." I know that we've entered the next phase in our lives when it will be rare for all of us to be home together, just the five of us. I think of what Dan said when we sent Joe off to college. "We worked so hard to build our little family, years of waiting and then the joy of having each of them. And now, it's already starting to pull apart as they'll each go on their way." I know the week will go fast. He has friends to visit, we need to sit down and figure out plans for his high school graduation party (kind of backwards, but we still get to have the fun of him walking with his class through graduation), he'll have dentist and orthodontist appointments to take care of while he's home, and he brought home a suitcase packed with textbooks so I guess that means there's studying to be done. So, I'm looking forward to the week ahead, but now that it's here, I hope it will just take it's time and that I remember to savor the time. Because next Saturday will be here all too quickly. It's nice to have a houseful again.

14 comments:

BClark said...

So glad for him coming home and giving you all joy. On the rare occasions I have mine home it just flys by too fast. Enjoy, Barbara

Xandra said...

There's no better feeling than having all of the family together again, even if it is for just a week. It sounds like your family will never really "pull apart"...you are so blessed!

Xandra

Becky said...

I am so happy y'all will be enjoying one another for a couple of weeks.

I know that sweet time ... I called my 2 boys this week to ask if they were planning on coming home for Easter. When they both said "YES!" I told them with gas prices the way they are (we are at about $3.41 a gallon) that they should not at all feel obligated. I told them we could come see them in the next couple of weeks instead. I don't kow what they will decide but this gas stuff is killing me.

Have FUN!!!

Bill said...

Shame on you for making me get all teary-eyed!
You are right, you are in a new phase of family life, but I believe you will be pleasantly surprised. You will now see Joe become the man you have so carefully prepared him to be.
Thanks for sharing all this with us, and I hope you have a wonderful week. ♥

kim said...

Oh Karen---you know I know just how you are feeling! The years do fly by so very fast. My *baby* who will be in middle school next year, headed off to youth group tonight with big brother as it was 6th grade night and those pesky 6th graders were invited to come check it all out. Sam, after living through 3 siblings being able to participate in youth group--(basically there has been at least 1 sib in youth group all the years that Sam has been alive)-he was over the moon with excitement. While part of him is sad to know his elementary school days are numbered, part of him is SO ready for the big change! Next fall, for the first time in I don't know how many years, Kerry and I will be alone on Sunday nights--something we have joked about never happening over the years, yet here it is, almost upon us. I have been feeling a bit more emotional over losing my old life--mothering 4 kids under foot all the time and being home with them--and I know it is stemming from the fact of our last one getting ready for this huge life change.

Take lots of pictures this week and tuck little memories into your heart....
*smiles and hugs*
a teary eyed Kim!

Jen said...

I know how happy you are. Remember to enjoy every minute and smile...smile alot. Kids like it when their parents smile. I'm really happy for you.

Judith said...

You will be amazed how quickly the next years pass. But it's not sad, or bad, just sometimes hard to have to let them go. This is where eaglets must leave the nest, or they'll never know the joy of flying. But I do understand it is hard to let them go. Sounds like you've prepared them well.

Judy said...

Have a happy week together!

gail@more than a song said...

I hope y'all are having a great week Karen! I remember what you're talking about very well, it hasn't been too long since that happened to me when my first one went off to school. And you're so right about just one being gone making such a big difference! I don't know why that is.
It does get harder to have you all together and it's different, not necessarily a bad thing but it does take some adjusting!
Enjoy every minute!

Candace E. Salima said...

Karen - how nice to have your son home again. Have a wonderful week with your whole family.

Stacy at Exceedingly Mundane said...

Oh Karen, I'm so glad he's home on break and you guys are getting this time together. Enjoy every minute of it :)

violetlady said...

Have a wonderful time. This was a beautifully written post, Karen. Thank you so much for sharing it. I know I missed something along the way, but is your son studying in Europe?

Robin said...

I know exactly what you mean. Having all your "babies" together at once is so awesome. I hope you have the most precious time together and have a blessed Easter.

the mother of this lot said...

Hi Karen, What a lovely post. Hope you all have a great week together!

Thanks for visiting and your kind comments!