Beautiful Life

Hey child up and go; A big world is out there waiting for us to live in every day. Outside you will find, there is love all around you; Takes you, makes you wanna' say; That it's a beautiful life and it's a beautiful world and it's a beautiful time to be here, to be here, to be here. -Fisher

Monday, October 3, 2011

A Different Normal

One of the things I enjoy most about homeschooling is that if you decide on the fly to pick up and go somewhere, you can.  You just tweak the school schedule.  And that is exactly what I did when I realized that Paul's national sales meeting was going to be held in Nashville this year.  Why? Because some of our favorite people live near Nashville!   

I had to steal this from their own blog. Why haven't I thought to take a new picture during one the two weeks we have spent together this year?  I do not know. That idea won't escape me next time we are together! I hope.

I ran my idea past Anna and got the okay to pack up my crew in the monster van and drive up with Paul.  We offered to stay in a hotel.  Didn't want too, but I was afraid that our brood would prove too much for their small house.  And let's face it, if you aren't used to the noise and activity that comes with so many kids, it can be overwhelming.  But, they would have nothing of it, and set themselves up for the punishment.  They called it great fun.  Ha!  I think they are just being sweet.  But, I will have to say that they handled our invasion with the utmost grace.   

We piled into their home and lives, wreaking havoc on their schedule for 7 days and nights.  And though there were a few moments of stress, it was so good to be together that those moments were forgotten quickly. 

The big boys got to camp out for a night before we pulled the plug due to near freezing temperatures one night and made them sleep on the kitchen floor.  The little ones sleep on the floor in the room with YoYo and FuXia.  It was a logistical nightmare for the Caudills to get their boys off to school for 4 of those days, but they never complained.  No doubt, these are just plain good people. 

It's amazing how our families could get along so well.....well enough that they could over-look the complications of having us in town on school days!  And now that I'm home and had time to reflect on the visit, I realize one of the major reasons I enjoy their company so much is because when we are together it isn't odd to be dealing with/thinking about/talking about cathing schedules and braces and adoption bonding/discipline issues......because they are dealing with ALL those things too.  And when we are together, Claire isn't the odd one out.  She isn't the only one that has mobility issues or a cathing schedule or special things to consider.  She gets to feel normal....a different kind of normal, but normal all the same. And that is good!  It's good for her and for me.  Just to see first hand that our normal isn't completely foreign. 

Oh how I wish I'd remembered to take pictures of us all eating around their table {some having to sit on plastic tubs, or step-ladders} or sleeping in sleeping bags all over their house.  The toys strewn across every room and the front yard.  Four older children, plus the men folk around a little poker table in the living room having a blast.  Us laughing our Beeeee-hinds off at the movie Monsters Vs Aliens. The chickens.  The chickens make me smile and remind me of my grandma's house.  Sitting around the chicken coop talking and feeding them clover from the yard.  The kids having a water fight in the yard.  Asher dressed as Superman for two days.  The three little ones coloring on the floor. I took pictures of none of that, yet those were some of the best times of the trip! 

But, I did get some pictures of the train ride, which all the children thought was cool....even the big ones, and that's saying a lot! 

 Asher was beside himself excited about this!

Claire and YoYo had a photo shoot waiting for the train ride to happen.

And I even managed to get some pictures of some of the kids at the playground.

But, for the most part, I was just enjoying the visit and forgot about the camera.  Am I sorry?  Yeah.  But, the only thing that is really sad is that the visit is over......for now anyway.  My kids have to get back to school and the Caudills have to prepare for some upcoming medical travel {something we understand}. 

But, that's okay.  I have a feeling we all enjoy the different kind of normal we feel together and will end up planning another way our families can hang out together soon! 


Anonymous said...

I can't believe there is not a single comment yet on this beautiful epic post! Clearly your friends are incredible and have an amazing family--and they must have really fed you some good grub! Even if the boys didn't get to build a fire--I mean, stay in the tent after it got cold--it was clearly the trip of a lifetime!! That family must sure love y'all a heap!

Chelsea Gour said...

LOL! You know "Anonymous", they are truly some of the best people we know! Not even Kidding. Oh yeah, it was definitely a trip of a lifetime and we sure did feel loved, especially after all the amazing meals Anna put on that table! You wouldn't believe how she slaved over a homemade Chinese meal our first night (I think I ate 3 egg rolls and I don't usually eat egg rolls!), Minestrone soup and lasagna other days. MmmmMmmm!

God's Grace said...

Chelsea I really enjoyed this! And everyone looks wonderful. It's amazing what 6/7 months does in our new children. Even my very "old" new daughter... simply amazing what the Lord has done :) btw, you wrote about a chicken soup recipe a while back. I copied it and place to make it soon. Terry