This weekend was amazing.
Due to some scheduling errors at Job 2, I got the weekend off and boy oh boy did I need this weekend off. Job 1 is causing me inordinate amounts of stress (the consequences of which are manifesting on my face like a 14 year old girl). Anyway, I got two whole days to exist as a human being and to be with people I love. Let’s start with Friday.
Friday, I spent the entire day with Natalie J. Fun Fact: Natalie and Maren are the only two people on the planet I know who actually make use of the things they find on Pinterest. Nat and I had lunch at Joe’s Crab Shack, and just talked. And talked. And talked. And it was wonderful. After lunch, we experienced Charming Charlie, where I purchased this gem of a hand bag. And also ice cream. And a birthday present for my sister. Happy Birthday, Andy! You’re never going to touch this bag!
Natalie decided that she wanted to go to the temple in Kansas City. The temple isn’t open yet, but she wanted to be near it. I didn’t blame her. I love being near the temple. So we went. We drove to Shoal Creek Parkway and just … were there. At the temple. And it was so beautiful. It was a little bit chilly as the sun was setting, but it was the perfect backdrop to our peaceful moment. We just stood on the ground of the temple and looked. And were there. And breathed. And existed. And watched it glow. It was just so wonderful.
After the temple, we decided to head back to Olathe. We had to stop by Target quickly, and ran into some weirdos honking at us from their car. Nah, it was just Marie and Adam 🙂 I love them. Natalie and I ended our girl-date day at the movies, and while it was a pretty decent movie (I didn’t fall asleep!), it reaffirmed the very simple truth that I don’t go to the movies. It was still a great day.
Saturday, I got to sleep in with zero expectations of needing to be anywhere. I could have lazied around on the couch all day if I wanted to! But I didn’t. It was too beautiful out and I was craving time with friends. I called up the Horspools and challenged them to a Just Dance – athon. Challenge accepted. All afternoon, I danced my butt off with Natalie, Paul, Emilee, Alix, Riley, Maddie, and Hannah. Taylor got out of there as quickly as he possibly could. I don’t think I won once. What I loved the most was a sweet moment I had with Alix. She’s not the most cuddly person on the planet. She has a unique and understated way of showing her affection, and you have to know Alix to know what that looks like. On one of my dance breaks, I was cuddling with the Big Small Horspool (Riley), and when she got up, Alix (the Small Medium Horspool), came over to sit next to me.
“Alix, do you want to snuggle?!” I pleaded.
“No, I just want to sit near you.”
I snuggled on her anyway.
From the outside, it looks like one overly affectionate 25 year old weirding out an angsty teenager, but really, it was a tender moment. My heart melts with this family.
(I would share a picture from this event, but Paul made it perfectly clear that if he was to participate, there would be no cameras.) Just know that we all looked goofy.
After partying at the Horspool’s, I scooted over to the Hufford’s to babysit the shorties so the grownup Huffords could have a date night. And so I could squish on their children. Let it be known that these children are so stinkin’ adorable that, as far as I’m concerned, they can do no wrong. Ever. One look into those 10 blue eyes (distributed evenly among 5 children), and I’m pretty much putty in their hands. I’m such a sucker. Seriously, look at this face.
We danced together. We ate pizza together. We learned about birds together. We prayed together. Laney is a magnificent pray-er. Is that a word? I’m going with it. Here is an excerpt from her prayer this evening:
Please make sure the frogs are okay and are nice. Please make sure we are famous. Please bless the unicorns. Please make sure the bugs come.
C’mon, readers. Tell me this does not make your heart feel all warm and gooey? I also got the coveted Anna Snuggle. After she puked on me, of course, but I let it slide. Again, those blue eyes! As I was rocking her to sleep, I tried to sing her some lullabies. It took me just a few words and a few sloppy notes to realize that I do not know (m)any lullabies. I sang “The People’s Song.” I sang “Be Still My Soul.” I sang “Under the Sea” and “Morning Lullabies.” I sang “My Life Would Suck Without You.” I made up a song called “I Think You’re Sleeping, But I’m Going to Keep Singing.” She snuggled into me and fell asleep. The other 8 blue eyeballs were downstairs playing Wii Baseball and seemed content enough for me to steal a few more minutes of Anna snuggle time. So I did. And I let my heart and mind wander to a place that knows how much I want this. Ooohhh, squiggly.
After I tucked all Hufford children into bed, and the grownup Huffords came home, I called up my friend Barb, who, I am confident in my suspicion, never sleeps. On my way over to her house, I just turned off the radio and had a quiet moment to sit with the feeling that my life, right here and right now, rocks. I don’t always get to feel like this (what with being too busy to know my name), but when I do, I want to savor it.
Barb and I spent our night gabbing. We ate brownies, we danced, we sang. We played pictionary, during which I rocked the pictoral representation of “mouse trap.” We spilled our hearts on the things happening in our lives. It felt good.
Readers, when I’m in the grind of the work week, and rushing from one expectation to the other, it’s easy for me to lose sight of where I’m happiest. I’m happiest with these people who fill my life with blessings and love and patience and kindness and family and love. Did I mention love? I’m grateful for the weekend off so that I could have my eyes and heart refocused. I needed it.
So much love,