June 26, 2015

32 weeks 5 days

Yesterday, I made red raspberry leaf tea.  I followed the advice here, but only steeped it for 10 minutes:  Less than 2 months until we meet our wee one and I want to be strong and ready for labor.
Today I am 32 weeks and 5 days.
 We have been going to the concerts in the park weekly.
 The girls were playing slap-jack.  It was the steel drum band, calypso-style music...really summery!
Olivia got a baseball from one of the Miami Marlins players at the game we went to last week.  The girls did Irish dancing pre-game and post-game and they got to watch fireworks from the visitors dugout. 
Olivia turned 12 last month.
Father and son...we roasted marshmallows after dinner at my in-laws house on Father's day.
And our oldest daughter, turns 14 today!

June 12, 2015

3 weeks ago

So much has changed since 3 weeks ago.  My dad was still amongst the living here on earth.  He wasn't doing well, and they put him on oxygen...he was having difficulty breathing and swallowing.  I still lay in bed at night, wondering "What could we have done?"  We were hoping the doctor would give him food via through the g-tube, where he had surgery 4 years ago to have a tube inserted so he could get medication that would go right to his small intestines instead of taking medication orally.  Honestly, I'm glad that didn't happen, because he wouldn't have wanted that.  He couldn't talk, really, barely a yes or no that last week...we miss him dearly. 
His funeral was in Loveland, OH.  His coffin is made of simple pine, painted around the sides with "Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal have mercy on us."  My parents got both of their coffins a while ago, just to be ready.  Here are more photos from Dad's funeral and burial (which was in Jordanville, NY):
The burial service was served mainly by Fr. Chad Williams, who is Dad's Godson.  We had a nice dinner of soup, salad, fish, potatoes, peas and fruit salad at the monastery afterwards.  The kids ran around (mostly barefoot) in the grass after playing.  It was very nice to see family and old friends.
We took a week vacation to Tennessee.
Listening to a wonderful free bluegrass concert at Ole Smoky moonshine.
Beautiful morning sky in the Great Smoky Mountains.
 It really looks smoky there.
 The view from Clingman's dome.
 In Cade's cove...
We went to West Virginia last weekend for our friend's 90th birthday.
Freshly picked strawberries and cherries from some of our friends. ♥  Yum.

While on vacation, I read Radiance of Tomorrow by Ishmael Beah, about life after the war in Sierra Leone.  In the story, he describes how there, after someone dies, the next 40 days are important.  Same with those of us who are Orthodox Christians, we pray for the soul of our departed loved ones, that God will have mercy on them, because no one but Christ our God is Sinless.
This photo is on our bookshelf where we keep our spiritual reading and Bible, so that we remember to pray for my Dad's soul.