Posts Tagged ‘New Years’

Phoenix… We have a Problem!

January 15, 2017

My parents were blessed to spend New Years in Maui with my sister and her family, relaxing on the beach and enduring the rooster calls on the island. Being the kind and thoughtful daughter, I volunteered for pick-up duty on their arrival home. When they booked the tickets, I remember hearing the return date as January 11th, a date that coincides with a special occasion for one of my nieces, who is from Maui. I thought it coincidental that the dates matched.

Calling my brother, who had taken them for their departure, I wanted to confirm the airline and flight time. All was good. Here’s my sticky note.

pink sticky note2.jpg

I feel the need to point out the extent of my niceness. That 6:49 is A.M. The airport is 30 miles from our house in the same direction all the Phoenix metro traffic heading downtown. Big fat bumper-to-bumper bummer.

Before I volunteered for o’dark-thirty parent retrieval, I checked with all driving family members to see if it was “more convenient” for someone else to go. Nope. Two had to go to work and one to band class. The glitch in this scenario is that our daughter had to be to her reading specialist at 8:00 a.m. From experience, I knew that I couldn’t make it back from the airport in time to take her and I didn’t want to wake her up at 5:15 a.m. either. The princess needs her sleep.

I called a faithful friend who also has a child in the reading class and asked if Nora could sleep over at her house. Sure! That’s what friends are for. I delivered her to her pajama party late on Tuesday night.

My alarm, which incidentally is only set a few times a year, blasted it’s jovial wake-up tune at 5:15 a.m. Please remember at this time that I am a homeschool mom. One of the top reasons we homeschool is so we can get the rest we need… i.e.: we sleep in…. almost every day.

I threw on sweats, brushed my teeth and hair, and went out the front door into the chilly AZ air. Brrrr… in the low 50s. Black skies laughed at me. I am always surprised when it is dark in the morning, for I rarely see this phenomenon.

Traffic wasn’t bad at all and I pulled into the parkade with 15 minutes to spare. After making mental notes of the level and parking area, I checked the screens for arrival times. 412 from Kahului just landed….6:28. Early! Good. This should go quickly. My comfy bed might even still be warm when it welcomes me back!

If you have ever landed at Sky Harbor in Phoenix, you may be aware of the dual runways and the occasional need to taxi for 15 minutes to get to your gate. It adds to the suspense of deplaning. Thankfully I remembered this little tidbit and was not alarmed by a 20 minute delay between the landing time and seeing weary travelers in Hawaiian shirts getting off the red-eye flight. Finally several vacationers trudged by wearing neck pillows and carrying pale green Hawaiian Cookie Company bags. I was a tad alarmed when I didn’t see my very own weary parents. There was no way I could have missed them walking by. There is only one gate for them to come out of. I was there the whole time. But they didn’t show up.

Baggage claim is right down stairs from where I had been sitting for 30 minutes. I decided to take a trip down there to see if Dad and Mom teleported from the plane to the baggage area. Nope. All the Hawaiian shirts were sitting on the floor awaiting their tardy suitcases.

Back upstairs I went… a bit concerned. Could something have happened to one of them on the plane? I called both their cell numbers several times. Both went straight to voicemail. I didn’t want to call my sister to see if she put them on the plane because it was 3:45 in the morning in Maui. I called my husband who was across the tarmac in his office. “I can’t find my parents,” I lamented. He comforted me by telling me they were probably just lost. Great! Where do I report missing persons?

My husband suggested checking my text messages again from Maui. I opened up my brother-in-law’s message and it read, “Mom and Dad arrive Thursday morning at 6:49.” Big fat early morning bummer. It was Wednesday.

Their flight WAS on the 11th of January… but arrived on the 12th of January. I was 24 hours early. I decided not to wait for them at the airport.

A Starbucks caramel apple cider soothed my weary soul before I left the terminal. After handing over my $5.00 for parking and I was on my way home to my snuggly bed.

(In a couple weeks I am scheduled to pick up my niece ON THIS SAME FLIGHT! Hopefully I will get it right next time.)

 

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10 Days Past December

January 10, 2014

Usually I am a bit more up-to-the-minute on my New Years post with a review of the past and hope for the coming times.  2013 was put to rest none too quickly for my liking.  It was a hard and frustrating year due to the car accident and slow healing.  Glad that’s almost over!

On December 31st I pulled my journal from the bottom dresser drawer… the journal with the hot pink cloth binding and the swirly letter L with bling bling on the cover.  The journal contains my bucket list.  I usually don’t look at it but once or twice a year, so I’m pleasantly surprised when I get to highlight the completed items on the list!  In 2013 there were 2 1/2 items completed…. 1. Go on a girls road trip! CHECK!  2. Build a chicken coop and raise chickens. CHICK!  I mean CHECK!  And 1/2 of 3. See the Parthenon…. well, I did see the Parthenon.  The one in Nashville.  I didn’t even know there WAS a Parthenon in Tennessee!  It’s in far better shape than the one in Greece.  When I made the list, I meant the one in Greece, but I didn’t specify Greece…. so I half-way highlighted it with hopes of Greek Islands in my future still.

On the horizon for 2014, other than we should start getting fresh eggs come May, we have a few out of town weddings, a graduation, some missions trips and lots of excitement and hope!  I relish a fresh new year with no scribbles on the pages.

As far as resolutions go…. REZ#1: I’m going to lose the weight I gained while lying on the couch for months eating casserole after casserole that my homeschool peeps brought to feed our family! Believe me, I am SOOOO thankful for my community who surrounded us during that time!  What’s a bigger size of jeans?  Or 2?  But everyone plans to lose weight, right?

REZ#2: I am reading the Bible through again.  The Children’s Living Bible is the chosen translation again.  The best I ever did at reading the Bible through involved a plan that took weekends off.  I needed the weekends to catch up!  So I divided the number of yearly weeks by five days and then divided the number of pages in the Bible by that number.  Voila!  Brilliance!  Four and a half pages a day.  And it’s already January 10th and I’m ahead of schedule!  Oh Yeah!

REZ#3: Make a few more mind and life changing resolutions…. like spending time each day in silence, and spending time each day being artsily creative, and knitting (well, that is creative too), and spending time each day listening to good music.  “Good” by my standards, not my children’s.

What are your resolutions?  Did you make any?  Will you keep them?  Share the wealth!

2011 in Review

January 2, 2012

Early yesterday morning about 1:45 am, after bringing in the New Year with most of my family at my parent’s home, I sat on the side of my bed and pulled out my bucket list of 100 things I hope to do…. but I only have about 73 items on my list so far.  This is a common occurrence on January 1st in my life.  During my first day of the new year ritual for the past several years I have used the yellow highlighter to cross off three to four things that were accomplished that year.  This year was different.  I only highlighted one item and it was Read the Scarlet Letter.  Bigg whoopie doo.  It was sort of sad after many years of mucho highlighted crossings-off.

The year-end review was good for my soul, however.  2011 was one of the hardest years of my life.  It was a happy year, yet difficult for me adjusting to being a mother of four children.  It began with the strain of hardly being able to communicate in Spanish with our precious daughter.  After a month home, even with the language barrier, I realized I had not had a talkative seven-year-old kid in my house talking at me all day long for over seven years.  It wore me out!  I haven’t taken this many naps since I was four-years-old…. not even when I was pregnant with child number three with a four-year-old and a one-year-old running around the house.  I love having Nora here, don’t get me wrong.  For the first three months we semi coccooned, always having either Rick or I with Nora… when she was awake.  She needed the stability and the attention.  As soon as her black hair hit the pillow, we did try several escapes for date-nights, but usually I was too tired to enjoy them.

It was at Nora’s Gotcha Day (the one year celebration of her adoption) when I realized that I almost felt back to normal.  It took a blinking year!  When I mentioned this to my thoughtful and insightful husband, he quizzically asked, “Oh.  You think you’re back to normal?????”  I didn’t want to know what that meant, so I never asked.  But I felt like I had accomplished something quite monumental….. surviving the first year of adopting an older child… and not having visible bald spots on my head.  A well-meaning friend and fellow-adoptive mom told me to call her when I felt like I had wrecked our family by adopting.  Thankfully, that feeling hasn’t surfaced and I haven’t needed to make that phone call. That’s a big deal.

Even though it seems like I only read The Scarlet Letter this year, it’s not true.  For the first time in my 45 years, I read the Bible through in a year.  I’ve read the whole book before, but never in a year.  That did my heart good.  If only it had been on my bucket list.  Maybe I should add it so I can highlight it!  (I secretly do that with my daily to-do lists.)  Shhhh.

The second non-bucket list accomplishment is truly a lifestyle change that is in progress.  I gained 20 pounds with each child that came into my life… including the child that came to us through God’s gift of adoption AND the baby that didn’t make it to see the world.  Needless to say, I was not on the top of my health game at the beginning of 2011.  I’m getting closer.  Through the program Take Shape for Life, I have managed to rid my poor body of 62 pounds so far.  I can barely lift 62 pounds…. good grief!  I still have a ways to go, but I feel SO MUCH better.  No more sugar induced headaches, or deep-fried onion ring stomach aches.  No more pumpkin pie comas or entire empty bag of Cheetos guilt.  Part of the success was due to the reading of another GREAT book, Made to Crave: Satisfying your deepest desire with God not Food.  If that doesn’t smack me upside the head, I don’t know what would?  It was real life in black and white.  It was encouraging and heart changing.  It changed me in 2011.

So, Scarlet Letter aside, I’m pleased with my personal positive progress in 2011.  I have big plans for 2012… there will be many highlights this coming year…. our 25th wedding anniversary… (I know!)… our eldest graduating from highschool homeschool…. and three semi-big trips to look forward to.  But I feel the need to up the ante… to choose somehow to serve others… to reach out to hurting people around me… I haven’t figured it out yet, but that will be my resolution.  I’ll keep you posted.

Happy New Year!

December 31, 2011

From the SIX Crosbys to you and yours!  May the God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and Linda be ever present in your thoughts and abundant with blessings and guidance in 2012!  Make this next year ROCK for Jesus!

?#15 from My Sister’s Jar – Ministikwin Lake

August 18, 2008

OK, I realize this blog is called My Sister’s Jar… and I haven’t pulled a question from the jar in three months.  Either I had to go in WordPress and figure out how to change the name of the blog OR open the jar and get with the program.  Even though I’m reading the book Do Hard Things, I chose the easy route this morning.

Tell about a time you accepted change and how it impacted your life.

It was the Christmas season of 2004 and my sister’s family had arrived from Washington to spend three weeks in Phoenix with the rest of our extended family.  They only come every other year, so we were all looking forward to games and food and fun, especially the nine grandkids.  About a week before Christmas, my dear husband told me that he had a Boxing Day surprise for me.  (That is a Canadian holiday on Dec. 26th.)  Anticipation and glee filled my heart, as I LOVE surprises.  Not knowing makes my mind go WILD with wonder and it simply causes life to be extra exciting.  That was all blown to bits when he told me that my surprise was a family road trip to Ministikwin Lake, Saskatchewan…. an 1890 mile ONE-WAY trip straight north from Phoenix to Canada’s frozen tundra.  Rick’s parents rented a teeny log-cabin on the frozen-solid lake and his brother’s family was also going.  Now, Crosby family get togethers are filled with fun, laughter and frivolity, but keep in mind it was December…. AND MY SISTER’S FAMILY WAS VISITING.

I’d like to report that I smiled and said, “Sure, honey!” but it didn’t go down that smoothly between us.  In fact there were several lively discussion behind closed doors.  With tears in my eyes, I found my carefully prepared Christmas list in Rick’s wallet.  I crossed out everything on the list, wrote PARKA in big letters and handed it back to him.   (This was the ‘accepting change’ part of the story.)

Anyway, we drove for three days through rain and sleet and even snow to a 700 square foot cabin where 13 of us stayed for a week.  It was cozy, to say the absolute least.  Did I mention that it was MINUS FIFTY DEGREES? An “arena” was cleared on the lake and the men and kids were captivated with hockey the entire week.  I did a puzzle.  Pictured below are five cousins from three families and Jennie, my sister-in-law, the black scary-looking-bank-robberish one from www.bagsforzaza.blogspot.com   NEW BAGS up TODAY!

There are about 27 blogs that will eventually be written from our time on Ministikwin Lake (a claustrophobic attack at 3 am, the Canadian candy bar taste test, the faiwwies, THE trek to the remains of the EP club, the missing tooth, the frozen blanket stuck to the wall, the tip jar, the garage sale on top bunk #2, just to name a few), but onto the second part of the question: how did it impact my life?  Well, we’re still married.  The forced trek north did go down in the family history books as “the maddest I’ve ever been” but, like I said, we’re still happily married.  Sometimes you just have to give in and do what you DON’T want to do to keep the peace. It’s like my momma used to say, “Do something you don’t want to do every day.  It makes you a better person.”

This is Aus right before frostbite set in.  His face was frozen like this.  (kidding)  The moral of the story is “when life hands you snow, make snowballs with rocks in them and annihilate your opponent.” (It really does make you feel better.)  Great family memories were made… and I have a really nice parka out of the deal.