Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Table

We have this table in our kitchen that is probably close to 20 years old.  It's an oak table with a leaf in the center. The table will easily seat 6 and can seat up to 10 or so when extra folding chairs are placed around it. Our oak table has served countless meals to our family with high chairs pulled to its side. As the years passed, booster seats were added to the chairs so the kids could reach their plates. As the kids grew, many a class project or homework assignment was done around that oak table.  Our table has offered its' service as a resting place for foods like pizza or hot ham and cheese sandwiches that the teens would snack on after singing praises to our God on the first Sunday nites of the month for the last 10 years.  That oak table has also hosted many a conversation, some serious and some not-so-serious for many, many years. It has even been the place where events of long ago have been revealed by some of our kids. They would typically begin with something like, "Did I ever tell you about the time...".

A couple of weeks ago, I took the leaf out of that oak table. Tim and I no longer have the need to have the larger table in our kitchen anymore with just the two of us at home now. I actually took the leaf out a few days before Mikayla, our youngest, left for college.  She didn't like it.  It was not okay to her for that large oval table to now be a small, round table.

But it wasn't the size of the table really that mattered.  It's what the table represents - that table that has been a part of our home for as long as our children can remember. I would be telling less than the truth if I said it didn't sadden me just a bit to see its shape change from oval to round. It seems that taking the leaf out gave the whole situation a sense of finality.  Tim and I really are in the "empty nest" phase of our life. That's so hard to believe!

It's such a strange feeling with mixed emotions.  On the one hand, I'm so thankful that my children are growing and learning and leaving. I wouldn't want it any other way, really. I'm grateful for the kind of human beings that they are working on becoming -"remembering their Creator in the days of their youth". I'm grateful of the fact that I do believe they have come to understand that walking with God doesn't make the difficulties of life go away but it does make them bearable and that sometimes, here on earth, it's just not going to get any better than that ...bearable. I hope realizing that puts a longing in them for a place so much better.

On the other hand, the house is quieter, the closets are more empty, the table is smaller. All of that kind of leaves a void but I'm working to fill that void with useful, good things. I would never want to waste this time of my life resenting the fact that my children are no longer at the physical place where they grew up. The place where they really are and will always be is a place that can't be seen with the eyes but only felt with the heart.

For now, the extra leaf for the table is in a cool, comfortable resting place waiting for the time when it's pulled out again and put to work. Who knows?  Maybe even decorating cookies or coloring with grand kids?  I'm looking forward to that time when I can expand it again to it's rightful size!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Blossoms by Bev...

Miss Alisha Gayle Grant,
escorted by her grandfather,
Mr. Stan Dvorak
 A young lady that we've been fortunate to know her entire life married last week.  We watched her grow from a little girl with a loud laugh to a young woman whose desire is to serve the Lord. This "second mom" was so thrilled to be able to witness the union of Alisha Grant and Tyler Loveless last Thursday at Stonebridge Farm in Cullman. Everything about the evening was beautiful...the bride and her attendants, the venue, the reception...everything. And of course, the guys have never been more handsome.

I had the opportunity and was given the honor of putting together the flowers for the entire wedding party. I was very pleased with how they turned out but more importantly, the bride was pleased.  I've posted a few of the photos from that wedding.

Love you Alisha and Tyler!

Bridal Bouquet - View 1

Bridal Bouquet - View 2

Mr. and Mrs. Tyler Loveless

The Groomsmen wore yellow boutonnieres.

The bridesmaids carried yellow bouquets.

Groom's Boutonniere

Alisha's Attendants