Spring Break Recap...

March 24, 2013

Honestly, I'd just as soon have a do-over.  Here in Arkansas, our weather is rarely nice for the week of spring break.  I'm so tired of cold and rain and clouds that I could just throw myself a little fit.  I need some sunshine soon, really soon.  The yucky weather coupled with saying good-bye to Jack made for a week that I'm quite ready to move past. 

You'll have to just bear with me a minute because I'm still working through my grief.  Visitation was difficult; the service was difficult.  I have never seen grief displayed in a person's whole being the way I saw it Thursday night in Audrie despite being as composed as one could be in that situation.  There is nothing in the world that I wouldn't do for that family right now.  And, that has gotten me to thinking.  Why do I not go out of my way for people all the time?  When they aren't experiencing loss?  Why am I not willing and even eager to serve others in a way that will bless them, not just a way that is convenient for me?  To say that this incident has changed my life is not an exaggeration.  I cannot fully explain it, but it has.  I do not think I will ever see my children the same way.  Life is so fragile and we take it for granted.  I long to be the kind of mother my friend is -- encouraging, engaging, sacrificial, flexible, fun, and devoted. 

There have been some positives this week; a couple I believe are directly related to the tragedy.  The one I'll share is that my Lilah began asking some questions Saturday (again -- we've talked about this before) and sharing with me that she was ready to ask Jesus into her heart and be baptized.  Well, that happened this evening as her precious Sunday school teacher led her in prayer.  I'm very proud of her and I know that learning death is no respecter of age prompted her to make this decision now.  She has dealt with losing her friend better than we expected.  Her first concern after we told her was for their friend Colby.  She shed some quiet tears in my lap before moving on with her evening.  Later she cuddled up to me and had more questions and every night when we've prayed (since telling her on Thursday) we remember Jack's family and friends and ask for peace and comfort.  She also seems to have more questions each night and we talk about them.  Tonight she asked me if I'd bought a paper last week because she had heard at church that Jack was in it.  I'll have to give her my program from the service and print a copy of his obituary from the funeral home's website.

We did find some time to relax and enjoy each other last week.  The beautiful thing about having older children is the sleeping in.  My goodness, it was wonderful!  We also shopped for Easter dresses and no one cried!  And, this is big, Parker passed the driving portion of her driver's test.  Whew.  I'm not sure about that one, but her grumpy tester seemed to think she did fine.  We'll ask the curbs what they think the next time I let her drive through McDonalds.

On Wednesday we took our first trip to Crystal Bridges.  We're definitely going back when the weather is nicer and things are beginning to bud.  It was much too windy to walk the trails, but the art was fantastic.  We didn't see the Norman Rockwell exhibit, but I might like to try to make it back before it leaves.

The architecture is amazing!

Lilah and George

Notice the teenagers on their iPhones... They came around and enjoyed the art.

The children's areas were awesome!
Lilah chose to leave this creation on the huge bulletin board with others' pieces.

The drop-in studio featured paper-making that day.  Lilah's is somewhere in my car...we think!

Now, this is funny and pre-spring break...  Lilah was the STAR student again the week before, and part of being the STAR student is being the helper during circle time.  Read the photo.  Poor thing -- she's still talking about that SECRET ADMIRER from Valentine's Day.  I will never tell her! I'll leave her to figure it out :)  
Oh, I'm going to bed tonight halfway dreading the return to a schedule tomorrow, but also quite happy that we can begin the countdown... Nine more weeks.  That's doable! 

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