We've been having the most remarkable weather. Many of you are having remarkable weather this summer - remarkably hot, remarkably wet, remarkably dry. Ours is remarkably pleasant. I just can't get over it. After so many years of really hot summers and drought, we are having weather like we used to have in Colorado - pleasant mornings, afternoon showers, cool evenings. I hold my breath every day, wondering if it's going to last. I just will enjoy it as long as it does.
Do you ever put off making phone calls you need to make or writing letters you know you to need to write? The other day I realized I needed to talk to three different Lindas in my life. You know how Emma is the most popular name for girl babies over the last several years? Linda must have been one of the top names back in the late 1940s, because all 3 of these friends are my age, or close. I also have my dear blog friend, Linda, who is near my age as well.
So I did a Linda-calling marathon, and it was wonderful to catch up with all of them.
The first Linda I called was a friend from high school. I only went to this school in Nebraska for 2 years, and it was a great place to end my high school career. She was one of a group of girls who took me in as a junior and treated me as if I had been with them since kindergarten - as many of them had been. I hadn't seen her since high school when suddenly she showed up in my driveway. I couldn't believe it - her husband had taken a job out here for the same company where DC worked. Unbelievably, of all the houses they looked at, they bought the one next door to us. I didn't even know it was for sale, but was so thrilled, because those neighbors had been the kind that you really hope and pray will move away soon! What a blessing - they lived by us for 6 years and we had great times together. We also went through sadness with them, when their older son was killed in a freak accident at age 19. This Linda and I connected with two other high school friends who live here in Colorado as well, and we have spent many hours around lunch tables laughing and talking, and sometimes crying through each others' tough times. They have recently purchased a cabin close to us in the mountains, so we can see each other more often again. We talked that night for a long time and got caught up on the latest.
The next day I began thinking of the second Linda. Actually, chronologically, she was the third, but I called her next. This Linda began working at CSU in the same department with me, on the same day. She was my Christian buddy at work, and we lived through much together over the next 10 years. She recently lost her mom after years of encroaching dementia, and we talked of that for a long time. She left the university and did a two-year mission, teaching in Morocco. The last 4 years she's spent dividing her time between Estes Park, where she lived in a cabin with her mom, and St. Louis, where they stayed the winters with Linda's older sister. I hope to see her sometime in August when she's back here to figure out what to do with the cabin.
The next day, I called the third Linda - she was my college roommate for only one year, and my roommate in our first year of teaching. We both were resident assistants in a freshman dorm during our junior year. We became very close friends that year. She is tall like me, she had 2 siblings on campus, as did I. People thought we were sisters - and we were almost as close as we were with our sisters. We ended up teaching in a small town in southeast Kansas and let's just say, neither of us had a glorious experience there. She ended up back close to home in western Kansas and I ended up here in Colorado. We used to write letters regularly, but that went by the wayside after we got so busy with our growing families. But we still got together as often as we could, including going to college reunions together. I'm hoping we can go to our 40th (YIKES!) together in November. She's the kind of friend that, no matter how long it's been, the conversation picks up right where it left off.
I have one more Linda who was important in my history - she was my first college roommate. I have lost track of her, sadly. I wish I knew her current last name, because I could look her up on Facebook!
It's been a busy week in grandma-land. I've had the kids a lot. Blessedly, DC has been doing a lot of fun things with the big girls. I've had fun with the babies out on the patio. We attempted a walk to the mailbox, but we only made it about halfway.
Feisty got a bubble machine for her birthday, and the babes have been having such a great time with it.
Note the peanut butter and jelly on their faces and their swimsuits.
There's something about water - whether it's clean puddles --
Or really dirty, yucky gutter water --
Katie is following in the footsteps of her big sister, Care Bear, who never met a flower she didn't love or want to pick --
And, finally - I recently read a book that I want to share with you. I got it from my SIL for my birthday, but finally got around to reading it. It is a fabulous book, with a message that will really grip your soul. The name of the book of Safely Home, written by Randy Alcorn. It is fiction, but tells the story of Christians in China and the incredible difficulty of their journey with Christ. When one of the main themes of a book consists of the sentence, "Is this the day I die?" you know it's going to be tough to read at times.
This book is something every complacent Christian in America should read. Chuck Colson says, "Safely Home is not only a first-class story; it's a bracing wake-up call about Christian persecution in China. You'll be challenged."
If you read it, please let me know what you think. I believe it will change your thinking, as it did mine.