Sunday, December 14, 2008

Jacob's 5th Birthday--YES, from April of 2008

First, Jacob had a family party while Maw, Paw, Ashley and Matt were up visiting.

Then we had a slumber party with three of Jacob's closest friends.



Jacob had a serious shiner on his birthday, but for the life of me I can't remember how he got it...



The boys had a blast.




They finally fell asleep at about midnight (although, as you can see by the squinty eyes and "trying not to smile"faces, they weren't yet asleep in this picture).


Thursday, August 21, 2008

Isn't she PRECIOUS???





Okay, so I'm horrible at updating this thing. I have a ton of pictures from this summer, and I fully intend to sit down one night and update this blog, telling about everything we have been doing, but until then, I just had to pop on here really quick and put up a couple of updated shots of my niece, Ava. I am so sad that we are in Michigan and she is all the way down in Florida! I get to see her in one month when I head to Memphis for my brother Brent's wedding. Yay!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Bringing back memories...















Sigh. My beautiful new baby niece (top) is making me very nostalgic about when Jacob (bottom) was that little. I know this is completely cliche, but don't they grow up fast?

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Ava Isabella Cottrell

Introducing... video

my brand new niece, born May 18th at 7:45 pm. She is the first child of my sister, Susan, and her husband BJ. I can not WAIT to get down to Florida to see her, which I will be doing in just a couple of weeks! Isn't she just beautiful???

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Richard Gilmore Rogers (February 18, 1933-May 8, 2008)

Christmastime, 2007


As the few of you who actually read my blog likely know, my Daddy died on May 8th. It wasn't completely unexpected because he has had extensive heart troubles over the years, beginning with his first major heart attack in 1979. In the past several years he has been battling congestive heart failure. I don't really understand how that works, but I know he had congestive heart failure right before Jacob was born five years ago, and since then when his fluids got imbalanced he had to go back to the hospital to get them back in sync. Some of those visits were very scary. The last one was in October, and it was scary enough that I flew down to Memphis, even though I absolutely couldn't at the time. It was very worth it, and Daddy pulled out of that and ended up living over 6 more months, feeling quite well during most of that time. When he entered the hospital this time, it generally seemed like his other visits until he had two more heart "incidents", as the doctors called them. On the first incident, his defribrillater went off and stablized him, but it did not go off for the second incident. At that point, they put a big tube down his throat and were breathing for him. He coded two more times, but the doctors were able to save him. They then told us that it was likely his brain had suffered damage and that his heart was beyond repair. They said that all they could do was keep trying to save him when he codes until they couldn't. They asked us if we wanted them to continue trying to save him until we all got to Memphis. We all discussed it and decided there was no reason to make him keep going through that. None of us felt like we had left anything unsaid, so it seemed pointless and cruel to make his body endure that repeatedly while we traveled there. He died a couple of hours later.


I do not feel cheated. My Daddy led a wonderfully full and active life. He had a loving, healthy family, and he never passed up an opportunity to give us a hug or a kiss or to tell us that he loved or was proud of us. Much of the days leading up to his funeral were filled with more laughter than crying. But he will be so missed. He and my mother were married 51 years ago. He really wanted to make it to their 50th anniversary party, which he did, and oh how he enjoyed himself!


I will miss SO many things--hearing his beautiful tenor voice at church, singing his heart out; watching him sink hook shots and 3-pointers late into the summer evenings; his terrible puns (which live on in my brothers and sisters); his smell; the garden he lovingly planted each year; the little things I saw him do for my mother on a daily basis that showed me how much he loved her; his special steaks on the grill; the hugs and "I love yous" he doled out so liberally; and his hands--oh how I'll miss his big, strong age-marked, scuffed-up hands that would hold mine when we walked, and occasionally skipped. That was one of the few things we weren't satisfied with at the funeral--they put makeup on his hands to cover up what I'm sure the funeral home people saw as unsightly marks all over hands. But to us his hands were beautiful, and represented so much of what we loved about him. He was a loving, righteous, no-fuss, hard-headed, hard-working, God-fearing man. I know exactly where his spirit is now, and I hope that beautiful tenor voice is just filling up the streets of heaven.


To Deidre and Kimberly (even though Deidre probably rarely checks this, and Kimberly never does!): I cannot thank you enough for traveling to the funeral. I know with kids at home and busy husbands it was not easy to make the trip and I cannot tell you what your friendship and support means to me. I love you both from the bottom of my heart.


Below are some pictures from the trip home for the funeral. As I said, there was much laughter and fellowship.




My sister Karla and her son, Daniel.



My brother, Brent and my sister, Karla.




My niece, Kaitlyn, and me.





It was still Mother's Day weekend, so the entire family went out to eat together to honor Honey and the other mothers. One of Karla's dear friends, who couldn't be there, paid for the meal for all 20-something of us. We were so grateful.






Jacob sharing a milkshake with his cousin Matt.




Jacob being lovingly tortured by his cousin Ben, as only someone with a little brother knows how.




My poor, about to pop sister Susan and her husband, BJ. She gave birth 10 days later.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Tagged...

Well, it has been MONTHS since I blogged, but there are several blogs that I check at least 2 or 3 times a week. They are all friends from a long time ago--Deidre, Wendy, Christy, Traci and Leslie. There is only one of them that I still talk to regularly (Deidre), but I really enjoy reading about what is going on in their lives. One of those old (not in age!!! 30 is the new 20!) friends, Christy, tagged me to reveal 7 random things about myself. So, here goes...



1. I am a trash-tv addict. I'm not proud of it, but for as little spare time as I have, I watch A LOT of tv. I have TiVo in my kitchen, so by skipping commercials, I can usually squeeze in a one-hour tv show while I'm cooking, and a one-hour show while I'm cleaning up after supper. I say the more worthless the better--American Idol, Dancing With the Stars, Charmed was an old favorite, Heroes, Desperate Housewives, Grey's Anatomy, and so on. I do have standards, though--you can keep "Flava Flav" and "Tila Tequila"...



2. I eat Ramen noodles for breakfast every morning. Like Christy and her ice cream, I do not miss a day. I don't know what started this addiction, but my day is shot if I don't have them.



3. I only drink Diet Mountain Dew. I do not drink anything else. If I am at a restaurant that does not serve it (as most don't), I sip on water, but I am not happy about it!



4. I am a contained slob. For anyone that reads this that has known me for a while, you know that I am a wee bit on the disorganized side. Fortunately (or unfortunately, sometimes), I married a neat freak. Therefore, to maintain a happy marriage, my mess is now confined to my car and my office. Still kind of drives him crazy, but the house is always clean.



5. I have a near phobia of balloons. How do these things not seem to scare anyone else? They absolutely FREAK ME OUT. Everybody seems to love giving Jacob balloons, and I am a nervous wreck just waiting for them to pop.



6. I am getting some serious gray hair. I dyed my hair to cover the gray for the first time a few weeks ago. I don't think I had enough yet to where most people would notice it, but if you were around me a lot you definitely would. I think the dye-job turned out pretty good, but who knows.



7. I actually love my sister now. When I was younger, my sister Susan and I pretty much couldn't stand each other. I always got along with my sister Karla, but we never had to live together since she was in college when I was born. Susan and I now live about 1400 miles away from each other, and I talk to her 3-4 times a week. I think that isn't unusual, sisters getting closer as they get older, but it is something I really appreciate.



I am now supposed to tag 7 random people. Unfortunately, the people I listed above are the only ones I know who blog, and Christy already tagged everyone but Traci. I know Traci has read my blog at least once before, but I have no idea if she still does. Plus, I know from her blog that she has been tagged before. Oh well, I am going to tag her anyway--these are always fun to read. I am a novice at this, so I don't know how to link to Traci's blog from this post. It is linked up in the right-hand corner of my page.



The way this is supposed to work, cut and paste from Christy's blog:



Link to the person who tagged you.--Post the rules in your blog entry.--Share 7 random, or weird, facts about yourself.--Tag 7 random people at the end of the post, linking to them.--Leave a comment on their blog so that they know they’ve been tagged.