Memorial Day adventures

We had a wonderful Memorial Day. We didn’t make it to the Golden Gate National Cemetery like we usually do. Brandon went on Saturday and decorated the graves with flags with the Boy Scouts.

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So we held a cousins’ piano recital at the Westerlind’s house. It is amazing to see these kids progress and the work and time of practice and lessons.

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Then after the piano recital we had a book club with the cousins and adults. We read this book by Lois Lowry. Maren chose this book and resonated with the strong 10 year old girl who was the main character.

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We were invited to attend a barbecue for incoming BYU freshman from our stake. What a great group of kids!

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The house had a pool. We didn’t bring swimming suits, but that didn’t stop Robin, Maren and Camille from having a grand old time.

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Final piano recital

Nicole had her final piano recital today. She played a movement from a Beethoven Sonata and four pieces from Dello Joio. They were energetic and full of feeling. I could tell there was joy and relief from having completed all those many years of piano study and performance. She contributes willingly and beautifully in church and youth meetings. I am proud of her. Here she is with her teacher and both of her piano teachers and then with the family afterward.

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Hard work and determination

I am tired right now. I am going out of town in the morning and so I squeezed all the piano lessons for the rest of the week into today. That was nine piano lessons. I guess I am determined to keep up with these kids weekly. It makes a huge difference to do weekly piano lessons. But I am tired! We also got all the laundry folded and the all the beds changed today. Erik was integral in that process. I couldn’t do it without him.

After all the work, I went to Brandon’s baseball game. Erik came a few innings after I did. Brandon got to come up to bat with the bases loaded. He had his first hit of the season and hit an RBI. The next batter hit a triple and cleared the bases; Brandon scored all the way from first base. It was a bright spot after all his hard work to make the team. And then after making the team, his hard work to earn playing time and batting time. He has been getting some great hits lately, but they have been caught or barely thrown out. So today was the reward for the hard work. I am so glad Erik made it to the game too. I am so proud of Brandon’s work ethic. He gives it his all, works hard all practice, and really listens and responds to the coaches.

He and I were definitely worn out tonight. But there is nothing like the feeling of fatigue after giving it your all. It feels satisfying and rewarding, and sleep is calling me.

One-on-one time

I just finished a couple of piano lessons, and in the process realize how much I love to have one-on-one time with people. Today, it was in a few different situations. I had a great walk with a friend and time for conversation early this morning. On Tuesdays, Erik and I have a lunch date. It helps if we get away from the house and have time to just be together and talk. I went next door and talked to my neighbor and friend for an hour. We hadn’t seen each other much between kids being sick and just being busy. It was great to catch up on life. Then I had a chance to teach piano to two kids. I love that time with one child to help them as they are growing in a skill.

One thing I have realized is how important it is for Erik and me to connect every day. It needs to be quality time with real focus on each other and the burdens and concerns we each carry. Nothing can quite compensate for the lack of it, or strengthen us as well as when we have time for each other.

It is amazing to feel the love of God in a highly personal way. I imagine that He understands our lives and concerns and experiences individually so He can minister to us in our specific needs. I have sensed that care often in the last few days WHEN I take the time for prayer and feeling the spirit. His love flows one to one perfectly and freely. I wish to develop that kind of relationship with more people in my life.