Our Son Zeb is Eloping

Chris and I are invited to an elopement! (YAY!!!) And yes, you read that correctly. Our son Zebulon is tying the knot with the beautiful Bri in a couple of weeks. They are eloping. And we couldn’t be happier.

Zeb and Bri laughing under a tree.
Photo by: Photography by Tasha Rose (www.photographybytasharose.com)

I am throwing random images from the engagement photo sessions in this post because I love them.

In fact, I had narrowed it down to a mere 18 of my favorites, but sliced it to six for the post. That was brutal on my end. Please appreciate that ๐Ÿ™‚

Zeb kissing a happy Bri.
Photo by: Photography by Tasha Rose (www.photographybytasharose.com)

Apparently an elopement today is not what it used to be. Chris and I were discussing it with friends, and of course I had to Google it. According to Merriam-Webster we now have a “Changing Meaning of ‘Elopement.’ “

Our kids are so current.

More kisses from Zeb to Bri.
Photo by: Photography by Tasha Rose (www.photographybytasharose.com)

That entire article is an engaging read, but I particularly liked the quote:

The earliest sense of elope was โ€œescapeโ€ or โ€œflee,โ€ and one might argue that this is somehow connected to the way people are now sometimes using it in the context of weddings. Except that this definition does not mean “escape” as in “letโ€™s escape from it all,” but rather “letโ€™s grab the keys from the orderly and make a break for it!”

https://www.merriam-webster.com/words-at-play/read-this-before-you-elope

I’m super proud of these delightful young people. Bri went to college in the town we lived so we’ve known her for a bunch of years now. She and Zeb have had many grand adventures together. It’s been a real gift to see them both grow so much through it all.

Zeb and Bri get engaged.
Zeb and Bri are engaged ๐Ÿ™‚

Many of you know that they got engaged right after CJ and Lauren’s wedding.

They were supposed to get married last summer, then after the invitations were out, they realized they weren’t ready and canceled the wedding.

I have serious respect for that.

Zeb and Bri goofing around.
Photo by: Photography by Tasha Rose (www.photographybytasharose.com)

Marriage is an amazing thing that should be taken seriously. The breakup wasn’t pretty. Because life is like that sometimes. However, after a few months apart they decided that they don’t ever want to be apart again. How beautiful is that? They also realized that going forward, they should attack life together in their own style. Hence the small wedding in one of their favorite places.

We will be camping out with close family and friends the night before the wedding, and they will have the ceremony in the morning before it gets too hot. The afternoon will be spent hiking and paddle-boarding.

Zeb  and Bri and their dog Ophelia (Opie).
Photo by: Photography by Tasha Rose (www.photographybytasharose.com)

Unlike CJ’s and Lauren’s wedding, we won’t be live-streaming the occasion. There will be no Internet. How freeing that is in a way!!! Both options have benefits.

But I’m sure I will collect images to share after.

We head out in a little under two weeks for the occasion. I am seriously looking forward to it.

Zeb, Bri and Opie on the sand.
Photo by: Photography by Tasha Rose (www.photographybytasharose.com)

PS. I get another daughter ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ and she is totally awesome!

Back to the Bergs

April 11, 2019

I thought I missed them – my winter icebergs that I love. You can see them in full size on my post from a couple of years ago. And I was really sad. Then realized I had no right to feel sad. My reason for not getting to the beach to see the icebergs was because I was too busy playing on the slopes in the east. But nature had a gift for me. The last day on the slopes was April 7, and on the 11th I headed to the beach and got this visual treat:

Winter melt-off at Southwick
Winter melt-off at Southwick
Icebergs at Southwick
Icebergs at Southwick

And it wasn’t a moment too soon — the party was breaking up.

April 12

Icebergs at Southwick Breaking Up
Icebergs at Southwick Breaking Up
Breaking Bergs in Black and White
Breaking Bergs in Black and White

April 16

And then they were gone.

No more winter icebergs at Southwick Beach
No More Icebergs

Finale

I had two super treats to wrap the day on the trip where we encountered the end of the bergs for the year.

  1. Look how nature took the love I feel for my man and celebrated it with a heart over his head at one of my favorite spots:
Heart over Chris' head
Heart in the sky

You can see it a bit better in this pic, but Chris looks a bit goofy. Can’t have it all, I guess ๐Ÿ˜‰

Heart in the Sky
Heart in the Sky

and my other treat –

2. One of my favorite things in life is taking a walk when the birds are tucking in for the night. I love the sounds of nature at dusk. Just take a listen and relax with me.

A Relatively Perfect Day

David, Uncle John, Me, Aunt Anne and Chris

For many, it was a normal Friday. A day to get through before the weekend kicked off. For us, it was kind of like a holiday. You see, may aunt, uncle and cousin’s son were coming to spend a few hours with us in our Massachusetts haven (amazing how close that word is to heaven). Why would they go many hours out of their way to visit us? Because they love us. Which made the day even more incredible.

Expecting them around noon, Chris hit the slopes, trying to catch some runs before it began raining too hard. A tough time of year for us slope-fiends. We embrace the warmth and beauty of spring, but know the fun time on our sloping playground is limited. Then I got a message that they were close, even earlier than expected. Bonus!!!

David, Aunt Anne and Uncle John

It was a bit drizzly when they arrived, but amazing sports that they are, they popped up their hoods and walked outside for a tour of our little ski center. A soaking wet Chris passed us as we headed out, and we said we’d join him soon.

We walked past a small waterfall, which was pointed out to Aunt Anne, since she loves waterfalls so much. Then I showed the lift she vicariously rode on with me and the run we went down together. Strolling past the coffee shop and firepit area and shop, we headed back to the room for our now signature luncheon of egg sandwiches (a fun machine Hudi and Mollie gave us makes those).

Aunt Anne eating our traditional lunch - Egg Muffins
Aunt Anne eating our traditional lunch – Egg Muffins
A few fun finger foods with family
A few fun finger foods with family

Of course I had to take a picture of the handsome chef as well ๐Ÿ™‚

Chris making egg muffins

We have to make the sandwiches one at a time, which might bother some, but we were all of a like mind that this gave us plenty of time to talk and catch up on each other’s lives. I shared my new favorite drink of seltzer mixed with berry tea, and Uncle John shared his train magazine. I swear the man knows everything there is to know about railroads. I particularly love how be brought us an article about the new train bridge in Letchworth, a park near where we used to live.

Train Article in Magazine

Aunt Anne is a big fan of Chris’ art so they spent some time looking at the pieces in our place, and Chris showed her some of the processes he goes through in creating — sharing drawings and such. A very pleasant time!

After lunch, we hit the pool and hot tub. And I got a nice pic of this wonderful couple and some other treasures.

Aunt Anne and Uncle John

I particularly enjoyed having the bonus of seeing David. While he and his brother used to spend time with us every other year, his life got busy with college and all (and our kids grew up and moved out). It’s been a bunch of years since we have seen him. Back in the day, we charted him on our growing wall, and he was so small, you couldn’t even see Chris’ name on the wall above him in a standard picture.

Just look at him now! All grown up.

David is as tall as Chris now
David is as tall as Chris now

Although not so grown up, he won’t take time to play in a pool when given a chance (see images of that on Aunt Anne’s Blog post). She got the action, I got the residual hair style, haha ๐Ÿ™‚

David's fun hair after a swim
David’s fun hair after a swim

They had to continue the journeys so we wrapped up the day with some coffee final smiles for the gift of our time together. I love this image of Aunt Anne particularly because it shows the twinkle in her eye that is familiar to me. And Uncle John is grinning as if he’s already working on coming up with a new pun. I feel the beauty of their souls really shine through.

Visits with relatives really are the best.

Hudi Turns 19

It can be argued that his birth seemed like yesterday. And at the risk of sounding boring, that statement cannot be dismissed. But interestingly, it feels as if we’ve been together forever. I cannot fathom life without our kiddos — Hudson and Zebulon and CJ. What joy and inspiration they bring!

Many parents worry about the teen years, but Hudi took them in stride. When he was in tenth grade he insisted on being in charge of his own virtual homeschool education, pacing himself in his coursework. At 16 he decided to go to college, and now, at 19, has his degree, his own apartment and a great job and a wonderful young woman in his life. It’s enough to make any parent proud.

It does take me a bit aback to realize this will be the last year I will have with a child in their teens. Remember the excitement of hitting double digits? Then teen years? Good times. Good times, indeed.

Still, it’s fun to look back to the past. Here’s a video I found of his 9th birthday party. And another of his college graduation. He’s changed a bit over the years ๐Ÿ˜‰

Hudi’s 9th Birthday
Hudi’s College Graduation

I’m not saddened by the path of continual growth. And no parent could be more proud of their progeny.

Hudi, you are rockin’ life. Being real with it and taking on its edges with determination and class. Your dad and I are so proud of you!

It’s kind of fun having you live so close to where you were born now. Who would have thought that 19 years ago?

I asked Mollie for some current pics of the birthday boy, and I love this celebration of life I received in return:

I see he is still somewhat of a goofball. This is good.

We love you, Hudi, and wish all the blessings of the world on you and your future. God did an amazing thing creating you! You are a true gift to the world.

Papa Doug

DougIn a world where families are constantly ripped apart, I was blessed with three, yes three, amazing grandfathers.

Leon and John were blood grandfathers who died several decades ago. And Doug, the third one, and technically a step-grandfather, ย died this week. I learned about it on Facebook when my cousin Audrey wrote:

Papa told the doctor he was going to go to heaven today … and that’s just what he did. โค Dearly loved by so many. Patriarch of an amazing family. Leaver of a wonderful legacy.

The image is from Audrey, too. And she is right. A legacy it is. One of faith and love. Our family is humungous. And really confusing. My dad seriously is his own cousin. Yet Papa Doug and my Grandma Joy took it upon themselves to travel around to visit everyone for as long as they were able. When I had surgery, they were there checking up on me. They called and messaged my kids, and I know they had an extensive prayer list they kept up even when they were physically no longer able to travel.

I loved family reunions where I could witness the love not only between them, but also for the extended family.

They were/are great role models, and I hope I am like that for my family. Papa Doug will be missed by so many. Yet I know he is happy beyond all happiness in Heaven.ย The crowd of people I love is getting bigger and bigger in that alternate dimension.

I hope I leave a legacy of faith and love like Papa Doug.