Catch Up

Hello everyone!  A lot has happened in the over two weeks since I have last blogged.  So here goes the brief recap...

We left for KY on the 12th as planned.  As long as Henry is asleep, he rides well.  Once he is awake, he's bored out of his skull and wants to play.  Unfortunately, you can't do much playing in a car seat, and you have to be in the car seat.  This equaled a not so fun drive.  But we made it in one piece!  Our five hour trip took eight hours, but we got to see some beautiful country, especially in Virginia and Kentucky in the mountains.

John left the next day with his grandpa for Kansas.  Henry didn't sleep well and fought his naps and his bedtime.  It made me really, really, really want John back with me!  I have just as hard a time adjusting to new places as Henry did, but at least I don't scream about it!

On Sunday, I went to church with our hosts.  They go to a large southern Baptist church in the center of their town.  When I say large, I mean large.  The church building was the entire city block, and they have a youth building across the street and parking in several other city blocks.  There were probably about 600 people in worship attendance, which was insane!  Normally, there are between 30 and 40 people in the worship service at my home church, so it was quite a change!  I loved their preacher though; he was engaging and interesting and didn't dilly dally in his sermon.  Random tidbit of information: he used to be the president of the Kentucky Southern Baptist Convention apparently.  Other good part of the day: Henry fell asleep during the service and sat quietly on my lap for the remainder of it.  After church, we drove down to the University of the Cumberlands.  This is where Bob (one of my hosts) works.  He is a professor in their education department.  The campus is absolutely beautiful.  Some of the buildings are built like historical landmarks, so one of the buildings looks like Independence Hall in Pennsylvania, and one of the buildings looks like Monticello, Thomas Jefferson's house in Virginia.  It's a small, private, Baptist college, but it was really nice.  We also drove to Cumberland Falls that day.  Cumberland Falls is the only place in the United States that has moonbows during full moons.  They're rainbows that you see at night becuase of the full moon.  I'd like to go there during a full moon and see one, because the falls were just beautiful.

By Monday, Henry and I had gotten used to being in new places, and we were having a good time.  We ate lunch with our other host (Diane) and one of her friends. 

Tuesday, Diane was working at one of the ministries of her church, so Henry and I had some time to ourselves.  We went for a walk once Diane got home.

Wednesday was Diane's birthday, so we had lunch at this wonderful little coffeehouse in downtown.  We made cookies that afternoon for her birthday and went to church.  I brought Henry home early; he was tired, and it was bedtime.  My cell phone rang, and it was my mom and dad.  I had to call them back because Henry was having a hard time going to sleep, and I needed to nurse him and get him back down.  When I called them back, they told me that my grandma had died.

My grandma has had dementia/Alzheimer's for a long time.  In fact, John has never known my grandma when she was totally lucid, and he's been in the family since 2002.  It saddened me, but at the same time, I knew she was in heaven and that she had her mind back and she was totally healthy and happy.  I know I'll see her again when I get to heaven. 

Well, this threw a kink in to our plans, because John and I weren't going to come back to NC until Saturday, but there would be a visitation and a funeral at some point.  I called John and we talked about when we would have to come back.  The next day, my mom told me the visitation would be Friday night, with the funeral on Saturday.  I called John, who was still in Kansas, and he and his grandma headed to Kentucky around 2pm on Thursday afternoon.  I got everything packed up and ready to go.

John and his grandpa reached Kentucky at 6am on Friday morning; we ate breakfast with Bob and Diane and then got on the road by 8:30am.  On the way home, it was very foggy.  We were driving down one interstate over the mountains, and it was so cool--we looked over to our right, which was overlooking a gorge of some sort, except you couldn't see anything except white clouds with tiny little mountain peaks jutting out of it.  It looked like little islands in a white sea.  It was so pretty!  The ride home was better than the ride to KY, but Henry still didn't like being confined in the car seat. 

We got home at 3pm on Friday, unloaded the car, took showers, and got back in the car at 5pm to get to the visitation.  It was nice to see all our family members, but it was a really crappy way to have to have everyone together!  Grandpa was subdued, but Henry was his usual charming self, and Grandpa laughed with him.  At one point, Grandpa blew raspberries at Henry and Henry responded with his own raspberries!  I think it made Grandpa feel a little better, and I'm so glad we were able to make it back for the visitation.

Saturday was the funeral and grave side service.  Grandma was buried next to the grave of her sixteen year old son.  It makes me happy to think about the two of them being together again.  I never got to meet him, but I will one day!  After the funeral, we went back to my grandpa's house and had a meal together.  Henry got to spend some time with his cousin, who is 2 years old.  It was so funny to watch because he is such an outgoing and friendly child, and she didn't want anything to do with him!  Maybe at Christmas she will have warmed up to him.

This past week has been full of doctor visits for John and me.  John has two bulging discs and is having cortisone shots this coming Friday to try and make the pain go away.  I really hope they work.  He isn't able to pick Henry up, and I know that is hard for him.  It puts all the care of Henry on me, and while that's okay, it's difficult because it's hard for me to get a break.  I was also able to spend some time with my sister during this past week.  It was so much fun!  We never get to spend time like that together because she is so busy working on her doctorate at Clemson.  I am so proud of her; she is so smart, and I know she'll continue to do well with her school work and teaching assitant duties.

We also had Thanksgiving this past week, too.  John's dad always has a huge feast at our church's fellowship hall, and my family always comes to it.  This year, my grandpa came, too.  I had invited him before Grandma died, and I was kinda worried he wouldn't come because of it.  But he did, and I think he really enjoyed himself.  He was able to spend some time with Henry, and Henry seems to make him happy.  That little boy is a ball of joy, as my sister-in-law said to me, and I have agree with her!

Friday we put the Christmas tree up.  I was going to put up the small tree I had used when I taught school, but John wanted the big one up.  "We have to do Henry's first Christmas right!" were his words to me about it.  Henry's felt ornaments are up, on the bottom of the tree, and our other ornaments are up at the top.  It looks pretty silly, to be honest.  Henry LOVES to take his ornaments off the tree, and he does try to put them back on at times, but that's just too much fine motor control for him right now.  He likes to crawl under the tree, too, but I remember liking to do that.  It's cute to watch. 

Now I'm working on Christmas cards, and then I'll work on wrapping presents.  I love this time of year, and it is going to be even more fun with Henry around.  Everything seems so new and exciting; it's like reliving your childhood at Christmastime.

Currently, Henry is teething and possibly growing, and showing signs of separation anxiety (though that could be because of the teething.)  It's like the great baby trifecta that renders your child a screaming, crying mess.  And yes, I do mean screaming, especially when he doesn't get his way.  He's just gonna have to get over it.  Screaming isn't going to get him anything from me!

And, now you're caught up from the last two weeks!  :o)

Hope John and Henry feel

Hope John and Henry feel better soon!