A few weeks ago I found out that a grant proposal I had written had been selected, and Herndon ES would receive $2500 to support our STEM program. Dave and I were driving up to Baltimore at the time, and it was welcome news during an otherwise stressful time. I was very excited but not nearly as much as Dave. He is so proud and has been making sure everyone knows about it.
Today we went to a Jazz and Gospel Brunch where the grants were being given out. It was such a great event. There was a jazz ensemble from the Duke Ellington School of the Arts as well as their show choir. The students in both groups blew me away with their incredible talent. Lunch was delicious, and we met the nicest people. Dave took every opportunity to talk up the STEM program and let people know how proud he is. He even interrupted the program ever so briefly so he could take a few pictures of me being given the check from the church’s pastor. I am so lucky to have someone who believes in me and supports me with all of his heart.
We are blessed with the greatest friends. The kindnesses that we have been shown during this journey have been humbling. Here are a few things that have arrived at our house in recent days.
1. Our friend, Kathie, made food for days to put in our freezer. On days when cooking seems too daunting a task, we can throw one of her meals in the crockpot and get on with our day. This had made life infinitely easier.
2. Today Dave and I were driving to Social Security to take care of some paperwork. At the stoplight, a truck pulled up next to us and honked. The two guys in the truck LOVED the sticker on the back of Dave’s car and wondered where we got it. I explained that my friend, Steve, had made it for Dave. As they drove away, they thanked us for giving them a good laugh first thing in the morning!
3. My friend, Lexy, (who has been mentioned many times on this blog before) broke her foot. She was ordered to stay off of her foot in order to avoid surgery. So what did she do with her resting time? She grabbed a bunch of pictures from my Facebook page and turned them into an incredible picture book. Her inspiration was an offhand comment I made about never printing my pictures. As I said to her – her thoughtfulness is unparalleled. Truly amazing.
4. I featured a big box of fun activities that arrived at our house a few weeks ago. The same three women who sent us that also sent us this gift certificate to Let’s Dish. Parker had such a great time preparing meals when we went to Dinner Done in the winter (which was also from Stacy, Julie and Becky), and she can’t wait to try it again. We will come home with lots of yummy dinners that are ready to be popped into the oven. Not having to think about what to make for dinner might be the greatest gift ever!
I will spend my lifetime trying to put back as much goodwill into the universe as we have received.
The weight of the world fell squarely onto the shoulders of my 19 year old today. I got a text while I was at work that said “Dad is retiring?!” We had talked to all three kids about Dave stepping away from work, but we never used the word retirement. There is a finality to it that has been hard enough for me to wrap my heart and mind around. So there was a reluctance to say it to the kids just yet. I guess a family member commented on a Facebook page that has been set up in support of Dave. That comment showed up in Sam’s Facebook feed which led her to the group. By the time I got home it was apparent that she had been crying for some time. I asked her if she wanted to talk but she couldn’t. She told me, “I just can’t get it together.” My response “I understand.”
A little while later, I asked her to run errands with me. I had an opportunity to explain to her that Dad could no longer lead the school since he wasn’t able to work full time. We talked about the fact that by retiring Dad was making sure that financially we were okay. She cried some more. It has been a tough day, but now she understands more. And she probably needed to know.
The Facebook group is really neat – lots of positive comments about Dave and great pictures too. But very bittersweet to be sure. You might want to check it out. https://www.facebook.com/groups/1425307577738898.
5.26.14 – 6AM
Me: How are you doing?
D: I’m all right.
Me: Scale of 1-10?
D: About a 5.
Me: Oh. That’s not very good.
D: I know but I don’t want you to worry.
Me: I worry anyway.
D: I know.
Parker got her first pink streak in her hair the summer before she turned four. Almost seven years later, she still hasn’t grown tired of it. She has been asking me for ages to re-do her hair since it has been about a year. Today I finally stepped up to the mom plate and got the job done. Happy Saturday!
Here are a few pics from our very productive day. Our To Do list is getting checked off a little bit at a time. It will be nice to have these things finished and not have to think about them again.
A picture is worth a thousand (or ten thousand) words. Literally.
We picked up the required physician’s reports and notes for our retirement plan. That is the paperwork that was requested including office notes, lab results, scans, pre-op, post-op, meds, chemo treatments spanning almost three years.
We do not take good selfies.
My friend, Cheryl, gave me a gift card to the yummiest restaurant. I decided after all of our hard work today, that I would treat Dave to lunch. If you have eaten at Cafesano, you know that this was a sacrifice to share my gift card! We tried to get the picture with the sign and both of us in it, but he was standing and I was sitting. And he is 11 feet tall and maybe I should have stood up? Oh well. You get the idea. Forgive the no makeup wrinkly face. (This one is for you, Nicola!)
This one made me get teary eyed.
The Hayfield seniors painted the rock yesterday. A very kind senior parent sent me this photo. Needless to say Dave and I loved it.
We drooled when we saw these beauties.
I had to edit this post so I could add another picture. These delicious treats from Georgetown Cupcake arrived just after I pressed “publish”. Thanks to Peggy, we are all enjoying a sweet sweet sugar high.