Tag Archives: Snow

Be Learning Life Lessons from a Lab

I was a cat girl growing up. Now, I am a lab girl for life!

I loved cats independence. Loved their gentle purrs and how they would sleep with you in the most obscure ways. My cat, Boots, loved sleeping right on top of my neck or chest.

Enter in Sexy Neck into my life in 1992 with a visit to his family home which was definitely a dog family. Their little dog, Mandy, was a sweetie. Someone to walk with, someone to greet you happily every single time you walked in the door and a great companion for everyone.

This cat girl growing up didn’t stand a chance! Nineteen years ago, I became a dog person, more specifically a Labrador retriever girl. My life would never be the same!

Over these years, I have had the privilege to learn from our two labs, KT and Summer. These are the specific lessons from Summer as this was a very Holy day celebrating her life.

💫 LIFE LESSONS FROM A LAB 💫

💫 Enjoy all the seasons, especially winter. Rolling around and sliding down slight inclines on your side is especially fun!

💫 Wag your tail at everyone but bark at the mailman.

💫 Always be on the lookout for food. You never know what you will find. Even things that you need to lick off the pavement are enjoyable.

💫 Be a baby watcher. Stand as close as you can with your wet nose on the baby blanket. Diapers are the best things to smell on babies. (We called Summer our “Nanny dog”.)

💫 Pour out love to the humans CLOSEST to you. Always be happy to see them. Always greet them at the door. Always look up to them with adoring eyes, especially when they have treats for you.

💫 Love children. All children. Always love those children that will rub your ears, your belly and play fetch with you.

💫 Take your master cross country skiing at all hours of the day. Be their companion and confidante listening to all their stories. Don’t get stuck in the powder!

💫 Be content being with, playing with and taking care of your core group of people. It’s the simple things.

💫 You are never too big to cuddle or have your ears and belly rubbed.

💫 Don’t leave the food you like unattended on the table. It might disappear! (This is a lesson from my boys: Nine and eleven year old. This is something Summer just started doing last year, which was ironic because her arthritis was so bad that we had to lift her into the car. That piece of toast on the table, though, no problem!)

💫 Don’t trust strange dogs.

💫 Be present

💫 A little mess doesn’t matter.

💫 The stuff you leave behind is meaningless. It’s the memories, the cuddles, the smells and the moments that create a MAGICAL life!

🙏🏻 LIFE LESSONS FROM A LAB 😘

Magical memories with this puppy: swimming, always being happy to see us, chasing golf balls, cross country skiing, eating every crumb off our floors, shedding a small dog every day, being my comfort and companion, witnessing the birth of all three of our boys…

Thank you faithful friend. Thank you for the life lessons that I will take with me for the rest of my life. I will miss you every day!

February 5th 10:28am 💜 Summer 🙏🏻

Be Awakening to White

We awoke to copious amounts of snow.

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Bright.

White.

Snow.

It ended up being a shovelling, sledding, snowman building morning before the school bell rang.

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For me it was a bright light in the midst of dark times where everyday someone is talking about Cancer, telling me about their mom’s surgery or walking with their mom past me.

The loss of my mom continues to be deep and dark.

The love and traditions my mom had around Christmas continue to bring light. She was an incredibly thoughtful mom and Nana.

I am awakening to this new light.

White.

Bright.

Everlasting love.

Thank you mom!

Thank you God for fresh, white, new snow.

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Be Having a Snow Weekend

Goodbye winter! We celebrated our last weekend up at the hill.

Saturday was the last day of cross country ski lessons. CC was very excited about his cookie race. JC loved going down the jungle trail and playing in the trees with his friend, K.

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Sunday, OC and I hit the cross country trails again. The big boys strapped on their downhill skis and hit some trails. CC went on the chairlift for the first time. The boys loved the Peanut Trail.

I think my boys will choose to take the ‘road less travelled’.

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Be Skiing With “Pulls”

Yesterday, we skied Woodland Bell. The boys have decided to call it Remembering Nana Trail. It is the trail where we placed a rose last week in memory of mom.

JC got to tryout a new piece of ski equipment yesterday.

JC has been waiting a couple of years, but on Saturday T, his cross country coach and owner of Stussi’s gave JC the go ahead to ski with poles.

We aren’t sure what the poles are for yet, mostly they seem to be brother “pullers”!

Love it.

Proud little man.

Happy little brother.

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Who’s that peaking behind OC in the Chariot?

Falling Snow and Fluttering Butterflies

Crisp fresh fallen snow as I step outside.

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Dad has been by her side throughout.

He watched her last breaths.

Dad greets me at mom’s door.

There are beautiful butterflies on the door. (This is hospice’s symbol that the room is not to be disturbed).

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My big cousin by my side.

We step through the door.

Peace enfolds.

Mom is warm and quiet.

She is wearing a shirt with butterflies on it. (I think I need to lie down with all these symbols of snow and butterflies!)

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Her body is at rest.

Death has come to her body.

Thursday, December 26th, 2013 at 7:00am.

Kisses, kisses and more kisses.

I lay my head in her arm in disbelief.

In peace.

I lap up her presence.

I am enveloped by her love.

Tears slide down my cheeks.

My sister arrives.

We walk to the hospice living room.

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We light a butterfly light.

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Place mom’s special card on the mantle.

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M reads Psalm 23.

Dad talks about his sorrow and gratitude.

The boys arrive to an empty room.

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OC says. “Nana with God.”

A red rose is on the counter.

We say our goodbyes.

On the memory Christmas tree we write Nana’s name and we take an angel home for our tree.

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Then we lace up our skates and head out into the outdoors that Nana loved dearly.

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I love you mama!

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Be Snowing In California

I am not sure how you feel about God or prayer or miracles or signs and wonders BUT I DO FEEL VERY STRONGLY THAT YOU ALL KNOW ABOUT LOVE.

How is it possible that this little stay-at-home mom’s blog has gone from 20-50 hits per days, to now 855 today? The LOVE you share for my mom, Gwen, my dad, Mike and our family.

We are overwhelmed by your love for our family through this blog, through phone calls, emails, cards, food and visits. Everyone has used their own ways and their own gifts to love us. Thank you.

Also being a Northern girl we all know about snow. A few weeks ago, I posted about the significance of snow in our life here.

On Friday, when we transferred mom from hospital to hospice, the snow flakes were fluttering out of the sky. I asked Tom, the ambulance driver, if mom could feel the snow on her face. As dad, Sexy Neck, JC, CC, and OC came to greet Nana into hospice, the snowflakes fell softly on mom’s face lying in the stretcher.

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The next day, I received this email from my old University roommate and teammate, Jill. More snow stories. I love how God brings such miraculous signs and wonders to encourage us. And the greatest of these was LOVE.

Now, here’s Jill:
SNOW IN CALIFORNIA
I’m loving reading your blog. How did I not know you were writing this?

We have so much to talk about but I thought I would share this with you.

I read your blog about the importance of snow in your life.
Last night I was thinking – what if I asked God to snow here?

I never really asked, just thought about it.
In fact I didn’t want to ask, because it doesn’t snow here.

Anyway, this morning I looked out to snow. Tree snow.
The fluff has been coming off daily, but this morning it was like a little snow storm.

Then tonight, Ayla finds these two itsy bitsy Styrofoam bits. She takes one and hands one to me and says Mum let’s have a snow ball fight.

Made me smile and feel so warm.

Looks like you are surrounded by wonderful friends and family.

Your blog has turned so peaceful.

-Jilly

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Be Having a Snow/No Car/God Day

Yesterday was our first huge dump of snow this year. We have been waiting.

This is the twelfth day of December and talking on the phone to my friend on the Island down south, I was griping about the fact that we didn’t have any snow.

AND THEN THE FLAKES BEGAN TO FALL!

Thanks for sending the flakes north, D!

The first snow is very significant for our family because it reminds us of our University days and our journey to know Jesus in a personal way. I had a football player friend who implored me to ask God to reveal himself to me. God did and continues to do so every day. I told Sexy Neck this story and four months later, he had a similar experience with God.

It was September 1995, and it was a beautiful fall University day. Steve asked God if he was real and if he was, could it snow the next day. God loved Sexy Neck so much and guess what, it snowed. Sexy Neck was floored. He couldn’t believe it! He then implored God and said, “God, I need you to show yourself again tomorrow by making is snow.” AND IT DID! Then it didn’t snow for another TWO MONTHS!

God is great! Personal. Real. Alive. He loves us all.

We spent this first snow day at home together hanging out. No car. No schedule. Just time to watch the flakes, tobaggon, create snow angels, make train sets, eat and just BE.

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Be Snowing in the Kitchen

Today, we were making cheese and ham muffins for lunch.  The big boys pulled over their Stokke’s to the kitchen counter and then started to add all the ingredients into a big bowl.  (Our KitchenAid does all the mixing.)

Baby OC was on the floor sitting on his plasma car and looking in our treat/baking cupboard.  I looked up to see what the big boys were doing when suddenly I heard a giggle from the floor.  When I looked down, I saw  two pounds of spelt floor all over the floor.Image

JC jumped off his Stokke and immediately started yelling “It is snowing! It is snowing!”

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Usually I find accidents where there is major clean-up quite frustrating, but today I grabbed the camera and laughed.  Accidents happen and I realize that I can control my reaction to them AND have fun along the way.

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Welcome to our chaos.  Snow and snowmen in the kitchen while trying to make lunch. Hahaha.

Be A Snow Lover

Hahahaha… I laughed out loud this morning when I looked out the window.

Last night at 6pm, we have friends over to play in the backyard in the sandbox and tree fort(sans mitts, snow pants, boots…).

Twelve hours later we have this:

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Hmmm, time to get the snow shovels out again.

God, I love you. Snow is an incredibly powerful, purifying symbol. Thanks for the reminder (and the laughs!)

Off to play in the snow (and encourage some very depressed neighbours!)

Here’s what we ended up making today:

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