Monday, October 28, 2013

thank you

I've been feeling a little bad. I told Dar I was going to finish my thank-yous by October (which to him meant by Oct. 31st, & to me meant Sept. 30th--any clue as to who's the bigger procrastinator?). They are done as much as I can get them done, still a few stragglers for one reason or another. As I was whipping them out, every so often I'd get a twinge of remorse that I wasn't spending more time to feel the words I was writing. But then type-A-me, the one that even forged Dar's signature a couple times just to get them done, would overpower & I'd crank out a few more, not pausing to really even process who I was writing to thank.

And for that, I feel bad. We got so many gifts-enough to set up house & start life together. And I, I hate to admit it, but I expected to receive this many gifts. Our family, friends, & church (mostly church!) came through & lavished us. Our turn to give is coming (has come, a few times over), but I don't know if we'll ever repay or balance the generosity we felt. And so far, all we've done is sent a shallow, not-as-good-of-quality-as-I-would've-hoped postcard. (Please do not let the quality of my thank-you color your opinion of our photographer! She did a fantastic job & these don't give her the credit she deserves.) And I was so intent upon making that October deadline that I didn't really put my heart into writing them:(.

BUT. But we are so grateful for all we received. And we really do thank you from the bottom of our hearts. 

*Also, there were a few gifts that we must have misplaced the cards of, so whoever gave us the immersion blender, rubbermaid storage set, & towels, we love them & thank you for them! And I'm sure we mixed up some gifts, (not sure which Janae gave me the coffee mug! oopsie), or left something off of a thank-you, so please know that we did get above & beyond all that we need & we feel very blessed & thank you.

Friday, October 25, 2013

the Zollingers

Here's a fun little family I got to photograph the other day. The kids are all quite distinct & aren't nearly as alike in personality as in hair color. Looking forward to getting to watch them grow.

Monday, October 21, 2013


"When is Sophie growing up?"
"Soon..." said her mother.
"Soon..." said her father.
These are (slightly altered) lines from one of my favorite children's books, A Weekend with Wendell. They seem to fit. This girl has evolved so much from a year ago, when I first moved to San Diego. It hasn't even been that long since I last saw her. But when someone grows & changes like she does, you have to sneak visits in often, or you'll get left in the dust, baffled & sifting through memories in your mind of the young girl you thought she was & trying to reconcile them to the young woman in front of you at the airport. You know you weren't eye level with her before, & when did she grow into her formerly coltish arms & legs?

But her mother & father so kindly did let her come visit (thanks C & B!) & we had such a lovely time with my former California charge. We didn't do too many touristy, extra-exciting excursions. Simply hanging out with the locals was fine by her. She got in on one of the many harvest festivals (where & when else would she have gotten to experience a corn maze & zipline engineered from a traveling irrigator?!). There were leaf fights & mule rides & lots of "riley" (oops, did I misspell that? :) ) friendly bantering. 

 It was so nice to catch up, especially since her days as a young girl are swiftly coming to a close I fear. She's on the brink of growing up, that one. I'm glad we got to keep her for a few days while she's still grossed out by a little spousal affection & can play in the leaves. Come back soon, Sophie. And don't grow up too fast.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

the long way

It's the little things that make me love Darwin. For example, yesterday on our way to somewhere, he didn't turn where I thought he should. 
"Wait, what are you doing? Why didn't you turn back there?" I queried immediately. 
He just smiled and said, "I have a surprise for you. Now close your eyes & don't open them til I tell you to."  
"What is it? When will I know? Is it cool? Will I like it?" I barked, eyes obediently shut. (I don't just love surprises.) 
After a few minutes, he said, "Okay," (I could hear the smile in his voice) "open your eyes." 

That's why I love him: because he'll take me the long way to share a bit of beauty, like a little boy shyly, but excitedly, showing me the treasures from his pockets. MmMmm, I love this man!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

first time "home"

I tend to write as a means of figuring out what I'm really thinking & feeling & why I'm thinking/feeling what I am, which makes for some wordy posts & rambling descriptions & probably more than you really wanted to know. (Case in point.) When I looked through my photos of my first visit "home" to pick which ones to use for this post, it was blatantly clear what I love most--and so, (thought it's against my nature, you're welcome), I'll let my photos do the talking.