I’m thinking of you today, and I wanted to tell you that we finally finished your giant sized box of oatmeal! It took over a year! Thank you for buying it! It was quite useful for hearty oatmeal cookies (chocolate chip) and warm breakfasts. I’m very glad I inherited it!
Over the past year there was lots of excitement in our family!
First of all, there’s been a new addition to our family. Miss Lily Kae Deaton, Sam and Kirie’s baby girl, was born in March after you left us. She’s as sweet and beautiful as her mommy and promises to be a genius, a musician, an artist, and probably Miss America! Her mommy is an absolute angel, her daddy (our beloved Sam) is so loving and such a great dad! Lily’s going to have a wonderful life. I know you’d be very pleased!
Nate and Megan were married in October, with little Nova joining them in their vows. What a fun wedding! We all had such a great time there! It was a beautiful ceremony out in Kerrville overlooking the river. Tim took the photos, of course. Afterwards there was a barbecue, an awesome party, live music, and a dance. Megan was absolutely radiant and so much fun to be around! She and Nate danced like nobody was watching, and we even took some gorgeous pictures of them in the river. (I was Tim’s “assistant.”) Michelle, Eric, and Nate spent some quality time together. What a beautiful family experience! I especially enjoyed my alone time with Nova.
We had our Christmas gathering as always. Not everyone was there, it wasn’t perfect, but that’s okay! (Doesn’t have to be, does it?) We had a wonderful time together. Everyone is doing well! The entire family is in good health, including your sister; Aunt Samye is healing well, praise God. Strong in her faith, getting stronger each day in her body. Our God is a God of wonders.
All the grandchildren are growing up healthy and beautiful! You’d be so proud of them! Leah, Hunter, and Brenna are doing great in school. And Austin is going to soon be two years old!
I didn’t mention it to anyone, but I thought of you. There’s always going to be an emptiness in our lives now that you’re gone. You’re there in my heart and mind, just as Mother always is. You were ~ and are ~ forever a part of who we are. And I hope and pray we’ll continue to live our lives in such a way as to honor you, as well as the values you instilled in us. May we always honor you in our hearts.
But I especially think of the little things, like the way you always carried your own toothpick and your own cookies in your pocket. And the way you loved cherry pie. And those threadbare shirts you wore, when you didn’t have to! And the way you always said, “Thank you!” And the fact that you still knew my voice in those last days.
I remember. I’m not over it. I know that God is using every single moment we spent together for His glory, and as I pursue my relationship with Him I’m often given opportunity to share from my experience with you. God has opened doors of opportunity to minister to and support others who also stand at the bedside of loved ones in difficult and challenging situations such as we shared. I’m forever grateful to Him for His provision in our lives. We’ll talk about this again when I see you! In the meantime, please give my love to everyone there with you! Especially Mother! How I miss everyone…