Mom and Dad’s Front Yard, 32 Years Later

I was going to write about the joy we feel when we are all together, how much I love my family, how proud I am of my brothers and sisters-in-law, how I don’t think of them as “in-laws” at all, ever, how I never knew I could love their kids almost as much as I love my own… But then I saw what my Dad wrote on his blog, and it summed it all up:

Lanting Family

from left to right: Andrew,Kevin,Joshua,Lynn,Sarah,Dad,Mom,Rob,Joel Jr.,Mark,tree man,Abbey,Jared,Joel Sr.,Lillian,Lisa.  row2: Alistair,Brooke,Aaron,Maddie,Whitney,Caleb,Me,Isabelle

Today we had our family over to celebrate Easter.
I think this day will stand out as a highlight in my life.
It is amazing to me how very much they all love each other.
Not a cross word,not a sarcastic comment,just peace.
Thank You God.

That my Dad felt “peace” with 13 little kids running all over his house yesterday is a true sign of God’s real peace.  I have an overwhelming sense of gratitude when we are all together.  I feel God’s hand of blessing on our family, and know so much of it has to do with my Mom and Dad’s love and commitment to God and each other.

Easter Dress

Same front yard as 1978.  A little has changed since then.

Cranky Girl

I’ve been a Meany. Somewhere between summer and fall I have let the Cranky Girl take over. I’m not sure where and she slipped in, but somewhere in the transition of the easy, lazy days of summer to the militaristic days of school busses, laundry, homework, activities, etc., Cranky Girl has stealthily slid in place of my regular happy self.

My friends don’t’ see Cranky Girl. My family knows her well and knows how and when to avoid her. Cranky girl comes out when I feed the monster of perfection.

She shows up:

  • When my messy house becomes more important than my family that played hard together all day
  • When dirty dishes are more important in my mind than the conversation that happens around the dinner table.
  • When wrinkles in t-shirts are more important than the person who smashed three loads of clean laundry into one laundry basket trying to get the laundry through to help me out.

Cranky girl has got to go. There are wonderful people to cook, clean, and do laundry for. People that make my heart soar when I take a moment to gaze into their beaming eyes of joy. People that make me giggle when they tell me the funniest parts of their day. People that snuggle me at the end of the day even if I have been Cranky Girl again.