Friday, August 16, 2013

In the Middle of Chaos

Just a little over a month ago now, our son, Andrew and his wife, Christina had a wedding to go to on Long Island.     Because they were going away, they asked my husband and I if we would be willing to watch their dog, Rosie.     We are always happy to help out our children and having a young dog around the house always brings a little more excitement and love.      

With the wedding happening on a Friday afternoon, they decided to drop Rosie off on Thursday evening as they would be leaving very early Friday morning.    I decided to have dinner ready for them so we could eat together and enjoy their company.     I also decided to have our oldest son, Michael and his family over so we could all be together.     As our sons have grown and gone out on their own, it becomes a little more difficult to have everyone together so every opportunity that comes about, we work to take advantage of.   

Thursday came and I decided to try a new recipe - pork spare ribs in the crockpot.    I enjoy cooking so anytime I can cook and try something different I'm thrilled.      Michael (our oldest son) and his family arrived first.      The aroma of the spare ribs filled the house.      Michael and Courtney had just looked at a new apartment and were excited about it, loved it, and wanted to start filling out their application for it immediately.      They sat at the table and got to work.     Rosslyn, our granddaughter, was playing with Jazz (our dog), talking about Elmo, smiling, and playing.  

I decided to put out some watermelon slices for everyone to enjoy while we waited for dinner to finish cooking.    I also had rice pilaf, fresh corn on the cob, and fresh carrots from the garden all cooking.     My husband arrived home to the house smelling yummy and Rosslyn jumping into his arms saying, "Grandpa, Grandpa."     A big smile came across his face as I also greeted him and the three of us hugged to welcome him home.    At this time, Michael and Courtney were making copies of things for their application and came back into the kitchen to say hi.      They were still excited and eager to share with John things about the apartment and show us some pictures.   

We looked at pictures as we all talked and set the table.     The apartment looked beautiful and I smiled as I watched them talk about it with such excitement.       Andrew and Christina were on their way, but told us to go ahead and start if things were ready.    We all started with our corn on the cob.    Rosslyn loves corn on the cob and can barely wait to sink her teeth into it so Michael and Courtney have a routine of running it under cold water so she can eat it without having to wait for it to cool.    

A few minutes after sitting down, Andrew and Christina arrived with Rosie.     Jazz and Rosie always get excited when they first see one another again so they begin by running around.     Up and down the stairs and all around the house.     Rosslyn immediately starts saying, "doggy, doggy" and can barely sit still to eat as she is eager to go to them.  

Andrew and Christina sit down to eat as the dogs continue to run around.     We try to settle them down only realizing that they just want to play.       By this time, Rosslyn is down chasing them around trying to give them kisses.     It was a little chaotic, but I loved every second of it.   

We finished eating as we continued to look at pictures of the apartment that Michael and Courtney were looking to rent.     We talked about the wedding that Andrew and Christina were going to.     Rosslyn was playing with the dogs, continuing to talk about Elmo (he is her favorite), and giving us all reasons to laugh and smile.   

After we began to clean up, Andrew and Christina started to share Rosie's schedule.    They are such good doggy parents and will make wonderful parents one day.        Michael and Courtney still had a few things to do on their application so I told them I would keep my eye on Rosslyn.     Aunty Christina decided to take Rosslyn outside to pick some fresh raspberries off of the bushes they planted for me a few years ago.    As I was cleaning up and doing the dishes, I took a moment to watch them.     Aunty Christina was talking with Rosslyn and they were both gently picking raspberries off the bushes.     Rosslyn was intently working to get a few raspberries and put them in a dish that would soon be put on top of ice cream. 

I smiled watching them and turned to look at the dining room table where Michael and Courtney were sitting working together on something for their future.      Just then, the dogs came running across the floor.     As hard as I work to make things perfect for my family, this is just a small example of how chaotic moments turn into lasting memories.   

John and I are still in love.    We show one another respect and never let the opportunity go by to welcome one another home.     Our sons have seen this and now as I watch them with their own families, they do the same.     We are blessed that everyone gets along and sees the gifts that each person has.     We all get excited to see blessings being bestowed on any of us.     The dogs in our life bring a little excitement and chaos, but they are loved and know it.     In the middle of chaos in our home, I smile as my husband watches me and smiles back.    

We have ice cream with fresh raspberries on top, I get the final instructions for Rosie, and everyone is ready to leave.    Hugs and kisses are given.    Once our chores are done for the evening, John and I sit down together.    The dogs are both not far from us and are comfortably resting.    The house is quiet.    I smile as I think of the day and each blessing it held.    I think of Michael and Courtney coming up on a year of being together and thank God they found one another.    I pray for Andrew and Christina as they venture on the road to see friends become married.    We get ready for bed and as I pat both Jazz and Rosie before I go into my bedroom, I am thankful for each of them.     They are part of the smiles, the chaos, and the beautiful memories.