Weekly Photo Challenge: Threes


I took this while in Texas visiting my youngest daughter.  We had just enjoyed lunch and tea at the Ambrosia Tea Room in Salado.  We were enjoying a nice walk together in the crisp November air.  She had been a married woman for only a month and I remember smiling at the realization of the subtle, but interesting changes in our relationship and conversations even after such a short time.

We took the time to slow down and enjoy the scenery around us and shared meaningful and heart warming conversation.  She is the photographer in the family and it was her idea to capture the “old bicycles on a fence”. 

Weekly Photo Challenge:  Threes

Three bicycles

This too (the chaos) shall pass

Morgan and a FL sunset

Morgan and a FL sunset

How did the time get away from me so quickly this morning?  My daily routine was all out of whack and it wasn’t even 8:00am yet.

As my daughter reminded me that we had to drop off her car before her hair appointment, the phone rang, adding a few minutes more delay.  Finally, I was in the car and on my way and then I saw him.  Our elderly neighbor was slowly making his way to the side of the road, waving his hands up and down holding what appeared to be a card.  I had to stop, even though I knew this would make me even later.

He had a card for the bride and groom, but expressed his apologies that he and his wife couldn’t attend the wedding.  He hung in my passenger-side window and began to remind me of how my children used to plant flowers with them.  As much as I knew I needed to go, I couldn’t.  This little bit of conversation and the card and well wishes to my daughter were important to him and appreciated by me.  He solicited a promise from me that I would remind my daughter of the times planting flowers and encourage her to teach her children to garden as well.  As I made my way to pick up my daughter, I remember thinking about how fortunate I’ve been to have great neighbors and friends.

Fast forward past long appointments, crazy traffic, and Costco crowds, and “the list”; the one that never seems to shorten and once again, the stress level seemed to reach it’s almost breaking point.  I just had to call my sister.  Just hearing her voice helped right away and she began to remind of a few things.

First she said, it’s all going to work out and then she provoked me to remember; these emotions aren’t just about the many “to dos”, or even about the chaos of preparing for a wedding.  More than anything, it’s the deep-down inside knowing that in a few days, my baby will be gone.  I’m holding that part in, to deal with it later, alone, after all the relatives and friends return to their everyday lives.

With that realization, we both gushed fresh tears, but they were cleansing ones.  They absolved my earlier guilt that said I couldn’t handle all of this planning and preparation without wanting to hide in my bedroom.  She left me with a heartfelt prayer and hung up to begin cooking dinner for her family and mine.  It’s the little things that mean so much.

I can’t even count the number of people who have called, emailed, messaged or sent word by a family member that they are there for me, if I need any help as “wedding day” looms closer.  Then there are the wise voices of counsel that comfort and provide that faith bolstering word when things get overwhelming.  And as for me, I’m smiling now as I write, although I still have tears.  They are happy tears though.  I’m so blessed with so many people who love me.

Sissy, I love you to the moon and back!

My sis and I

My sis and I

This post will be dedicated to my younger sister, Deanna, who will be a year younger than me tomorrow.

My sister has been my biggest fan from day one.  As soon as she was able to walk and talk she also deemed herself my protector.  The sad thing about this is that I didn’t have sense enough to appreciate it until we were older.  I saw her love, adoration and desire to protect me as an intrusion for many years.  As mom was sewing matching dresses, I was striving to be different and separate, having little recognition of the little redheaded treasure I had by my side.  Without getting too personal, can I say that I failed so many times?   That instead of showing appreciation, companionship and love, I often took the low road and belittled her.  Maybe I am being too personal, but it’s the truth and I think it happens all too often.  Maybe if I share my regret, someone will read and apologize to their sibling or refrain from demeaning them to begin with.

We’ve always been close, but I had created a distance in those early years, that had to be righted.  I’m extremely grateful to be able to say that my sister forgave me for all of my evil ways.  There is nothing broken between us anymore, hasn’t been for years, no hovering darkness, and I praise God for that!  But, I can’t help regret the situations that I could have handled much differently.

If I could give her the birthday gift of my choice, I would take back every unkind word or look that I ever said or gave.  She never deserved anything less than my undying love and support.  My sister isn’t just a wonderful sister, she is a great friend to anyone and everyone who has ever had the privilege of knowing her.  She has this God-given ability to make you feel like the most important person in the world and she has mastered the gift of putting others first.  She is strikingly beautiful inside and out and talented in too many areas to mention.  She is a gift to our family and our community, bringing hope, inspiration, laughter and love to all.  I am so blessed to have the most amazing sister that God ever created and I just want the world to know that I love her so much!

This Christmas season, if you have any words you’ve left unsaid or apologies that need to be given, give yourself the gift of delivering them as soon as you possibly can.  You won’t regret it.

HAPPY, Happy Birthday, Dee –  I love you!

Mitch Teemley

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