When we first moved to Liberal there were eight of us; by the time we moved into the little house on Paine Street our oldest son was married and our two middle sons were living on their own, so, at that point, there were just five of us...John and I, our two daughters, and our youngest son. Our oldest daughter married in the summer of that same year, so she wasn't there long. Then there were four of us.
In 2007 our youngest daughter landed a full-time position with the state and moved to northern Missouri. After that there were just the three of us...John and I and our youngest son. Our youngest son married in 2013, so then, it was just John and I.
It was in this place that John and I experienced, not only "empty nest syndrome", but the "what do we do now" after 26 years of homeschooling together. It was tough...and it still is at times. I miss those days of having all my children together under one roof and the hubbub of family life.
All of our grandchildren, except for our oldest granddaughter, came into the world during our tenure at the old house. Many happy hours were spent with the grandchildren at that house...especially when the older ones were really small...church events, family and holiday celebrations, picking up walnuts, tea parties, and all kinds of wonderful things!
|The grandlittles on the day that they gave me the stepping stones.|
|Audrey, Silas, Abby, and Gianna|
|Audrey, Silas, Abby, and Gianna having tea at Nana's.|
|T.J., Audrey, Liz, and Silas on Resurrection Sunday at Nana and Papa's|
|Liz and Audrey having tea at Nana's.|
|Abby and Gianna making Christmas cookies at Nana's.|
|Isaiah, Audrey, and Silas picking up walnuts at Nana and Papa's.|
|Silas having tea on St. Patrick's Day.|
|Our granddaughter Heather, our adoptive granddaughter, Chloe,|
and I having tea on my birthday.
There were other neighbors that, despite the fact that we hardly see each other at all now, will forever and always be considered good friends and others, of course, that have passed on, yet, their memory, and memories of our shared times together, linger on and will remain always.
When a new neighbor would move in anywhere on the block, I would welcome them to the neighborhood with a loaf of bread...baked fresh and right out of the oven...along with a jar of homemade jelly or jam or apple butter, if I had it.
At Christmastime I would make each family on the block a loaf of banana-nut bread or some other sweet treat, and would hand deliver it along with a special Christmas card. This was something that I looked forward to every year. It's something that we did when we lived in Blue Springs and it's something that I have carried over to here. I grew up having good neighbors at Grain Valley and, even though I've learned that it's not always the case, it's something that, in my heart and mind, people just do. I've never regretted trying to be a good neighbor to those that the Lord has put within my sphere of influence.
There are so many sweet memories of people that came and went at the house on Paine Street...our children...their families and friends...all the in-laws (and the out-laws, as my husband calls them...LOL!)...visits from friends and family from back home...our friends from Pennsylvania...church get-to-gethers...tea with friends...homeschool events...cookouts...bonfires...and the list goes on and on.
So many people...so many sweet memories! And I'm thankful for each and every one!
Until next time...
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