Pilot Number 2...

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Samuel couldn't wait to go to the Sun N' Fun. He was very excited about everything, but especially to watch the Blue Angels fly. As soon as we got in, he kept asking if we could find the museum so he could buy one of the miniature Blue Angel jets.
After pushing his dollar bills and change across the counter to the cashier, he politely said "no thank you" to the offer of a bag and skipped/ran outside clutching his purchase. The nearest trash can in our sights immediately became the new home of the plastic packaging covering his plane. He inspected it and found out he had bought the jet of Blue Angel # 2. 
After that, he was all eyes on, you guessed it, number two.

We bought icy cool lemonade and toured huge Air Force planes...and thought of our grandfather and his 20 years of service.

So grateful for a restful day spent together.

Samuel and his pilot. Pilot # 2.

"I will mention the lovingkindnesses of the LORD, and the praises of the LORD, according to all that the LORD hath bestowed on us..." Isaiah 63:7

Tell me you love me before you forget...

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My Grandfather, who will turn 82 this month, was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease 3 weeks ago.

Only 3 short weeks. And yet, they have been some of the longest and most difficult our family has faced together.

It is a hard thing to process. To digest. I think we all realize now how difficult it was for us to fully understand what it was like having a loved one with Alzheimer's until we had walked in those shoes.

To watch your father/grandfather become a completely different person than the one you grew up knowing, is, some days, quite honestly, gut-wrenching.

Even though he was officially diagnosed just a short time ago, we had been seeing some irregular behavior and changes in him for quite some time. Since his diagnosis, he has become steadily worse very, very fast.

We have always made a promise to our grandparents that we would care for them and be there for them in their older years no matter what. The thought of being put in a Nursing Home broke them up completely. We assured them this would never happen.

We are now caring for our grandfather 24/7. With him and my grandmother all the time.

We don't know what each day will bring. We sometimes face a thing completely different than the previous morning or afternoon.
We don't always know how to outwardly express our feelings and thoughts about what is happening. Or even adequately write it out for you to understand, like I am trying to do right now. I don't know how to do that.

What we do know though, is that we want to take these precious minutes and hours and days and weeks we have together and hold them close to our hearts. We want to take more pictures and video. We want to send more letters through the mail to him just so we can open them and read them to him. We want to talk to him. Even when it's been a hard night or a difficult day. We want to tell him we love him over and over again. Always.
We want to really laugh, even when there might be lots of tears.

And one thing we DO know and will always know without ANY doubt is that God is in ALL of this. He really is. He is covering us with His love and grace. He is giving us the emotional and physical strength that we desperately need every day.

And He has also given us SO many opportunities to be the Light of JESUS to both our grandparents through this trial. This is a humbling thing, because without this debilitating disease that has slowly taken my Abuelo's memory and changed our lives, I don't believe we would have the same open door to their hearts.

We would really like to ask for your prayers.
That our "everyday's" would be full of Jesus Christ as we take this journey and walk this road.


"Hear my cry, O God; attend unto my prayer.From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I.For thou hast been a shelter for me..." 
{Psalm 61:1-3}

Coffee Date....

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The littles and I just found out about the cutest Starbucks mini cups. After sharing a Tall coffee all the time, the boys were more than thrilled to each have their own! I think they are the cutest things. The cups, and the boys;) 

Sometimes the smallest things can make you happy:)

It's about that time of year again...

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We call it "Allergy Season".
There are a few of us who get them pretty badly.
Our little man Samuel didn't last long outside while raking leaves this week. The wind was blowing all kinds of everything around;)
Poor guy came in, took a Benadryl (which makes him very sleepy) and set himself up in the rocker. Just like this. Work boots and all. Wrapped in Abuela's afghan.

Somedays it's the small things...

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Have you ever craved a candle? To light one and let it's scent fill your room and make it cozy? That happened to me. But I didn't have any candles!
Thankfully, it wasn't like that for too long though;) 

Don't forget to take joy in the small things today...

The glowing sunset.
A brisk beautiful breeze.
Hot coffee on a cold day.
Tennis balls and a racket.
A warm cozy sweater.
A small Yankee Candle.

Alike. But different...

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This picture. 

I love how Mama's face is full of loving laughter. 
How Abuelo's eyes twinkle softly and his mouth quirks up in the faintest smile, even when he seems a tad serious. 
Mama's hand grasping my grandfathers arm. 
Abuelo's Air Force jacket and hat, worn with quiet pride; making us so proud too.
Father and Daughter. 
So much alike, but yet so different.

This picture is beautiful to me.

Shiny Blue....

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This picture is a little blurry and a little out of focus, but this was such a hilarious moment in our lives that it doesn't really matter to me how bad the picture is:)

Santi recently received a brand new, shiny blue bike from two very dear friends of ours about a month and a half ago, on Christmas Eve.

Before then, Santi had never really ridden a bike. When he was around 7 or 8 he tried a small one fitted with training wheels, but his scoliosis made riding difficult. More than likely, when we rode our bikes up and down our long driveway playing "bumper cars", Santi was on his scooter, which he loved! And believe me, his not being on a bike, but on a scooter instead, did nothing to hinder him from joining our "bumper car" game;)

But these two precious people wanted Santi to have a big bike with three wheels and a basket in back for carrying whatever he wanted. This was so sweet to us! We wondered how Santi would do as he does struggle a bit with forward leg coordination.

Well, Santi is on that bike almost every. single. day! He quite regularly comes into our room asking us to move the vehicles out of the driveway so he has room to ride. It's amazing and beautiful to watch. He has mastered the forward motion of his legs perfectly. He's still a little slow, but he's steady. We did try a bike ride down the road one day and realized "that was a disaster!" it was a liiiitle too soon for that!!
I love watching him check the mail on his Shiny Blue. He rides to the end of our driveway, jumps off his bike, runs (Santi's run is so unique. It's like a hopping/skipping run!) to our mailbox, grabs all the mail, runs back to his bike, quickly, but with a nonchalant way about it, dumps the mail in his basket and slowly pedals back to our front porch. He loves checking the mail. He has a specific day and everything.

But on this day, after collecting all of our junk mail letters, we had an accident. With our mail though, not the bike. It seems that Santi's basket isn't quite "hole proof". And, as he pedaled back to home base, one of our letters met it's end in the very oily chain of Santi's shiny blue bike. Treasure put it perfectly: "and it just happened to be "real mail" too! Why wasn't it junk mail?!" He felt very bad about it, but you know what? After we heard the details and saw the letter in so many small pieces, and Anita went and actually found even more oily pink letter evidence in the yard, we had SUCH a laugh about it! How in the world?! And it was really quite funny to try and figure it out, piece by piece.

You know? It was perfect. Just what we needed to happen that day.

Santi's shiny new bike and a shredded pink letter.


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