Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Summer Lovin'!

First I will start by saying Happy Father's Day! We aren't big on the "hallmark holidays" but we acknowledged the day and of course Lily had a few special things she made for her Daddy. It goes without saying that the Daddy in our house is greatly loved by all of the girls in his life and we think he is one of the best guys around. 

On Saturday we made our first appearance on the lake this summer, spending the day boating with friends. We had a great time and Pat was able to show off as well as share his rope swing expertise with a few young whipper-snappers!

I think he was pretty high on his horse when he landed and one young man shouted, "That was sick....sir". It's funny how one word can completely change your feelings about a compliment and bring your right back down to your place in reality. Heehee!

Pat was thrilled to spend a portion of his father's day tinkering with his jet ski(s) and (actually) fixing one so he could get in a ride for the first time in a few weeks. And he couldn't have had a better assistant!

A neighbor stopped to chat on her daily walk and Lily explained to her that, "Daddy and I are full of surprises!....We are going on an adventure!" And they did, they took a Kabota ride for a snack and trip through the woods to see a friend.

Now, taking it back to last weekend; we had a great one! Just one of those awesome summer days. We filled the little pool, jumped in the bounce house, ate watermelon and grilled out. My ideal day!

My life in a nutshell!

Check out that plant-watering stance!

Watermelon rhine is great for teething gums!

As I mentioned in my last post, Cora is 9 months old! She has busted her way into the 2nd percentile at 14.3 lbs. We haven't come across anything she doesn't like to eat but meat is her favorite, just like Lily. She has two teeth and playing in the dog bowl is one of her favorite things!

Just when I think everything is out of her reach, her arms seem to grow when I turn my back!

Her eyes! They are just like Pat's, the most beautiful blue. And infected in this picture, along with both of her ears! :( 

Lily's fun-loving attitude always keeps us entertained (when her dramatic behavior isn't getting in the way). I overheard her conversation with the babysitter the other day, "You know my last name? It's Stier it up." I guess we should take our Bob Marley album off of repeat! ;)

Sunday, June 11, 2017

So Little Time

Hello summer! We started our summer a little early this year with a trip to the beach in May and we haven't slowed down since. I am loving it but I hate that I haven't been able to squeeze in time to blog. Sometimes I lay in bed at night and think about what I would say if I were filling you all in on our lives. I wish I could include all of the details of the following events but I would never get this posted so her is the short version (if you can believe that!).

Taking it back to Mother's Day:

We spent the week at the beach, Garden City our favorite! The whole Stier bunch was together again! I have blogged in the past about my mom and often gushed about how great she is but this time I want to fill you in on what a fabulous Mother-in-law I have.

When Pat and I started dating one thing that appealed to me was his family. I really like them! I quickly learned that his mom was blast to be around. She was up for anything and willing to do anything anyone needed. She loves road trips and thought nothing of packing up and jumping in the car for the weekend. When our romance began Pat was living in Bluffton, later moving to Beaufort so Christie and I would often make the trip together. Shelly used to joke that Christie was my new best friend because, for a while we spent almost every weekend together.

She has been referred to as "Crazy Christie" because she is just that, crazy. But in the best way! She has these silly sayings that anyone close to her is familiar with. I was always laughing when we were together! She has a special touch when it comes to children, especially when she is teaching them to swim. It's magical!

Three years ago we went on a mountain trip together with a few of her friends. Pat and I left a little concerned, she just wasn't herself. She was tired and somewhat withdrawn. About a year ago real concern started to set in. By the fall she was really ailing and beginning to pursue a diagnosis. A few months ago all of our fears were confirmed, she has been battling ALS. The horrible disease has completely taken away any use of her arms. The trigger symptom was when it became hard for her swallow and she began choking. We have watched this vibrant, happy, lively women become somewhat immobile and at times unrecognizable. The journey thus far has had discouraging moments but I am happy to report that today she is doing good! She still has strong legs but she tires easily so she uses a wheelchair. Shelly and Jenny and their kids have moved here to help Jon care for her. Jenny reached out to a women caring for her mother, who is completely immobile and she has provided information and guidance as well as much needed support.

We are all enjoying our family time together, savoring the simple things that we may have otherwise taken for granted. I reflect on the years I have known her and the times we have shared with a new fondness. I think about my unwavering trust in her opinion when Lily was little - she fed her cereal for the first time, gave me confidence to start solids, provided me with everything I needed for my endeavor with cloth diapers and had my little fish in the pool at 5 months! My heart aches at the thought of not having her here with us one day but I am focusing on happily relishing in time we have. I am such a lucky person to have been blessed with the most wonderful mother-in-law!

*Since I started this post, Jenny has gotten Christie in with a new doctor that has changed many things about her care. We are hoping this will help her to be more comfortable as well as prepare her (and the rest of us) for what the future will inevitably bring.

Christie's favorite thing has always been having her family together and any other add-ons are welcome. Well, that was this beach trip - all of the family and few longtime friends. We has the best time! We were dispersed between 2 houses. Both were located on the inlet with dock access for a boat and Pat's jet skis. My family only made it to the beach twice, the pool was the place to be! 

Jenny led some yoga sessions.

Cora has the downward dog down, that was her move all week!

 Mini golf and movies on the lawn!

Boat rides and fishing

Cousins that look more like siblings

Jet skis

My beach beauties

I am so thankful for all of the wonderful memories we made this trip. By far one of my favorites!

We returned home on Saturday and the following Friday kicked off the McCarthy family reunion! As, I said, Christie loves having family together so she was thrilled to have all of her siblings together. 

The weekend was filled with good food, swimming, bouncy houses, slip and slide and lots of laughs!

A few more highlights from the last few months:

Haley's Shower for baby boy #2. We started off by surprising Denver at school! These two are so cute! Lily used to insist that he was her "broder"

Then I had a girls night out with two of my favs!

A fun day at the park and story time with Aunt Haley and baby cousin!

And finally love for the little guy!

A visit with an old friend and more fun times with my girls!

Cora is nine months old now! (she was only 8 months when I started this post) Boy has she changed - more on that next time!