Monday, May 22, 2017

After a year... are you still "newlyweds"?

A year has come and gone since I became Janice Drysdale. It's hard to believe! In one way, it feels like we've been married for so long because it was such a natural transition. In other ways, it just feels like yesterday that I was a single gal longing for all the things that are now my reality!

I'm so incredibly blessed to have such a wonderful husband. He's patient and encouraging, always making me laugh, he's handy - completing lots of projects around the house and he balances me. When I worry about every last detail, he is carefree and trusting God. It has been such a wonderful year.

But, it's funny how life doesn't go the way it is planned in your head. I never would've imagined my first year of marriage being so chaotic:
  • moving two houses and all the boxes that go with that
  • selling my beloved Beetle and driving a pick up truck
  • helping a child settle into a new school
  • becoming an English tutor as we help Cody learn to read
  • basically crash-coursing how to become a parent and deal with discipline, learning expectations, responsibilities, etc. Yikes!
If I imagined that I would be choosing my first anniversary card for my husband while standing in the grocery store - with the clock ticking - I would have thought that was ludicrous. Not me! Cards are far too important to be rushed. In fact, they should be hand made.

LOL. Hand made. What a joke. I haven't even had time to put together the photobook of our wedding! Gone are the days of having current annual photobooks. I haven't created one since I met Devin.

One day, life will settle down and I will once again enjoy the things I once did. But for now, I'm immersed in the moment of being a wife and mom. And you know what? I wouldn't trade it for the world. It's what I've been waiting my whole life for.

Tuesday, May 09, 2017

Mother's Day and Such...

On this day 2 years ago, I met a very important young man. A little red head that I now call son.

I must admit, I was nervous to meet Cody. Things were going so well with Devin, I was afraid of rejection from his son. We agreed after knowing each other a couple of months that we were ready for the two of us to meet. We made plans for Saturday, May 9th - which just happened to be the day before Mother's Day.

I parked my car and anxiously walked to the door. I was met by a grinning Devin. He was so excited to see me! He called Cody out of his room and introduced us. At first he was shy - hiding behind Devin - but that only lasted about 2 minutes. Then he wanted to show me his room and his toys. 

Devin knew that it was going to be a special day for each of us and he wanted to make it memorable. He wouldn't tell us where we were going until we got there. As we rounded a corner, Cody could see a helicopter through the sunroof of the car. He commented on that and Devin said "do you think it would be fun to ride in one of those?" Yep! We were going on a helicopter ride over Niagara Falls! (it's worth noting that Devin lived about 30 minutes from the falls)

What a day! We hovered over the falls and enjoyed the gorgeous view, but I don't honestly remember a lot from that ride. I was too overwhelmed with what God was doing in my life. I knew that He was putting the pieces of my family together.

Cody has been such a blessing to me and the bond we share is quite remarkable. I didn't know that I could love someone else's child this much. Although he is my stepson it doesn't feel that way. He has welcomed me into his life with open arms.

This morning at work, I found this note in my lunch bag. Oh my heart. I can't believe how fortunate I am.

Saturday, May 06, 2017

Happy Birthday Mum!

As my dear mum turned 70 this year, I wanted to share some words about this incredibly special lady. It's impossible to articulate how I really feel about her, but I'll share the toast I wrote for her birthday dinner.

What a wonderful privilege to call this woman our mum and Grammie. From a new wife with three under three to a loving Grammie that has expanded her flock to 14…your life has been spent pouring into and building up the people around you.

Mum, your caring and nurturing traits are what got you the nickname Mama Ellen at Meadowview and they’re what are at the very essence of who you are. You started off helping out with a brood of five brothers, picked the perfect profession when you became a nurse and spent 30+ years caring for others. And each one of us got the benefit of having you as our MUM.

I dare say I had the best spot in the family – as the “baby”. It meant that I got to spend one on one time with you while the rest were at school.  These memories include baking bread, trips to town, learning to read, many many songs and the time you took me to see my hero – Mr. Dressup.

Honestly, it wasn’t until this past year that I fully realized the sacrifices you made for us. When I remember my days at home, I don’t remember you having many hobbies of your own or nights out with a friend. You were old faithful. Preparing a meal for the family, cleaning up from the meal, helping one of us with a homework assignment, counseling another through some tears, repairing a ripped pair of pants, and making lunches before calling it a night. Mum, you gave everything you had for your family and we are all here tonight to say THANK YOU.

One thing that I’m so grateful for and as an adult have such an appreciation for is our spiritual upbringing. Through it all, you never wavered - faithfully taking us to church on Sunday, Family night on Tuesday, youth group on Fridays all while building a strong foundation of faith in each of your children.

We’ve had many laughs over the years as well. You aren’t afraid to be silly and enjoy a good belly laugh. Actually, a lot of those laughs came on family vacations. Who could forget the squeals of terror on the Cabot Trail or the famous “row boat” incident at Rainbow Valley? Your first trip down the waterslide was one to remember but we were all thrilled that you were brave enough to jump in!

Mum, you truly reflect the meaning of love shared with us in First Corinthians 13.

Mum is patient, Mum is kind. She does not envy, she does not boast, she is not proud. She does not dishonor others,  she is not self-seeking, she is not easily angered, she keeps no record of wrongs. Mum does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. Mum always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Mum, tonight we want to celebrate who you are and who you’ve been. We are all so grateful for the unfailing love and support. Happy 70th birthday and we look forward to celebrating many more with you.