In the calm after the “storm” –

Just said farewell to the last portion of my extended family who had come out to Iowa for my second born child’s graduation celebration. It’s been an INSANE four weeks – administering finals at the college and turning in final grades, Senior High Spring show, all the end of the year concerts/award ceremonies/projects, graduation party to plan and shop for, and 13 family members dropping in for the graduation weekend. Eleven of those family members ranging in age from my parents in their 60’s to my three year old niece stayed in my home. Chaotic?! You bet! We still have left over bags of chips that didn’t get eaten at the grad party. Sorry, the cake is all gone! But I could hook you up with some veggies and dip or left over sloppy joes. And if you just love a deli meat sandwich, I have one whole tray left over untouched!!

My house is showing the wear and tear of the last four weeks. It’s not completely falling apart but my floors are crying out for a good, focused, cleaning. My kitchen surfaces could probably use a careful scrub down. Piles of “stuff” have accumulated that need going through, end tables need cleared off, the graduate needs to take care of her cards, etc. and mom is REALLY looking forward to a schedule that does not have to be planned with the precision of a military expedition!

Do you want to know a secret? There is a part of me that will be sad to pull the house back together. In all of the chaos of the last four weeks, in all of the craziness that goes with the end of the school, with all of the stress that comes during the final couple weeks of a show, I’ve learned things about myself and built cherished memories. Once I pull the house together, I admit that this busy but fun-filled period of life has come to an end. And if you’ve read the last couple of entries, you know that what awaits me on the other side of the clean up isn’t exactly fun.

So, if you don’t mind, I’ll let that stack of graduation cards sit on my counter just a bit longer. I’ll smile just one more time at all the graduation party invitations from my Seven Brides cast members still covering my refrigerator even though most of the parties have already happened. I’ll sit on my back deck with a glass of lemonade and reflect on the outing to McDonald’s that the women of the family – three generations in all – took and the conversations that we shared. I’ll relish the fact that my niece and nephews were thrilled to come to “Aunt Moj’s” house and hated to leave. I know that the work needs to be done and my house needs to recover. But I think it can handle just one more day while I bask in the warmth of the happy memories.

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