There are many changes that take place in a family; constant, mostly imperceptible shifts as the family members grow and mature. You can find your family at a different stage of development without realizing it.
But, at times that growth is more palpable. You can sense that your family is at a pivotal moment - a moment that can push the family members to a new level of maturity.
That is what I believe has happened this weekend with my family.
I could look at this weekend as just a full calendar
but I believe that it is more than that. I believe there were opportunities for growth this weekend. And, I believe that my kiddos are growing up.
This weekend, Christian served as an usher at a friends wedding.
There is nothing like having your children's friends get married to emphasize to you that your children are growing up. I am reminded that, in the relatively near future, he too will reach this milestone. I am reminded that we need to be taking this valuable time to insure that he is prepared to be a husband and father, prepared to provide for his family, both physically and spiritually.
Ushering at this wedding provided Christian an opportunity to learn more about social graces and responsibilities. He learned what it takes to get fitted for a suit and how to wear a three-piece suit. He learned what is expected of a member of the wedding party. He learned about shouldering the responsibility of enacting someone else's vision. He learned more about edifyng others while selflessly serving.
Oh, what a weekend!
Bishop has spent this weekend at his first Boy Scout campout.
There is a new level of personal responsibility and accountability, as a Boy Scout.
He and his patrol were responsible for planning their menus and activities.
They are responsible for preparing all meals and cleaning up afterwards and are largely responsible for managing their own time.
He is excited about this opportunity and, upon his return, I am excited to hear what his experiences were and to determine how he has grown and how future growth can be facilitated.
Oh, what a weekend!
Keegan is receiving her car this weekend. She is so excited about this as it has the potential to open up many opportunities for her and Ian. But, as we know, with every privilege comes responsibility. Keegan is now assuming a new level of responsibility, with much to learn.
I pray it will be a blessing for her!
Oh, what a weekend!
Although I rejoice that my children are maturing and embracing new opportunities and responsibilities, it can be difficult for a Mama to have her little ones grow up.
A season of my life is over and I am now entering new seasons.
I mourn the end of one even as I get giddy over the other.
Oh, what a weekend!
Maceo, thankfully, has kept his Mama distracted this weekend by performing in James and the Giant Peach. He has kept me busy and laughing. God bless him!
Each participating artist was given a cigar box and four months to create a unique piece of art. There were no restrictions. The artist could do anything they wanted with the box; use it, in its entirety or any piece of it, in any way that they wanted.
And the results were stunning!
Kevin, inspired by the tobacco barns of Kentucky, created a box around the cigar box using old barn wood and tin roofing.
Jennifer created a compartmentalized box with trinkets set in resin.
This box is intended to be utilitarian as well as beautiful; it is intended to be a jewelry box.
This piece, by Tammie, is entitled 'Homage to a Homesteader.'
A photo of a family member represents the homesteaders of New Mexico and the cattle tag, baling wire, and nail represent the honorable work and self-sufficiency of these ranchers and farmers.
This stunning piece was created by Christie and features images of family members captured during 'a moment in time.' She was dear enough to include a sweet bundle of these photos within the box.
Lauren created a really sweet souvenir box, a place to store momentos that will allow her to remember those special moments of her life. I wish that I had snapped a picture of the interior as it is equally as beautiful as the exterior shown above.
Roxie, disassembled the box so that she could use the bottom of the box and its lid as covers for a book. In order to bind the book she used a technique called coptic binding.
She has been intending to try this technique for the last ten years and has finally done it. It is fabulous.
This final piece was created by my mother, Bonnie. It is a salute to the members of our family that have served in the armed forces; including my husband who served in Iraq, my niece who served in Afghanistan, and my uncle who died while serving in Vietnam. A medal belonging to my uncle is on the front of the box.
She enlarged the box, more than doubling its size, and created a false bottom where a bundle of newspaper clippings and photos were found. It is an incredible piece of work!
Every piece of art was so unique, beautiful and wonderfully executed.
At the end of the reception we did a drawing so that the pieces of art would go home with a different artist then they arrived with.
Mama received Jennifer's, Roxie received Kevin's, Tammie received Mama's (thank you Mama!), Christie received Roxie's, Kevin received Tammie's, and Jennifer received Christie's.
Lauren's will be returned to her, she couldn't bear to part with it (and I can't say that I blame her).
What a fabulous evening and what fabulous creations - I am blessed to be surrounded by so many creative people! You all make me smile!
P.S. Hey, Christie, Kevin really enjoyed receiving his art from the 'Something Old, Something New, Something Found, Something Blue" challenge.
Our latest artist challenge involved cigar boxes and, once again, I hosted a reception so that all the challengees could unveil their masterpieces simultaneously.
When I host an event, I like to create vignettes on the front porch that give a hint as to what is taking place within my home.
My hope is that it helps create a sense of anticipation for my guests.
But, even if it doesn't accomplish that goal, I enjoy digging through my stash of stuff ...
and pushing myself to create something interesting and beautiful.
Of course, as I am digging through my stash of stuff I am also looking for items that could create a centerpiece for the reception table.
As my hubby is a cigar smoker it was not difficult to come up with the elements of this centerpiece.
And, yes, I must admit that the main items in this centerpiece come from hubby's stash of stuff, not mine. He approved of the centerpiece and I think that it pleased him that his treasures were taking center stage.
For the reception, I served wine and sparkling cider and hot and iced teas.
I, of course, also served an assortment of munchies:
a host of crackers, cheeses and meats,
grapes, and lots of chocolate -
cookies dipped in chocolate, pretzels dipped in chocolate,
and sea salt and chocolate covered caramels (delish!).
It was a beautiful and delicious spread that seemed to be enjoyed by all.
(Especially those caramels, do you see them above in the cigar box? Roxie and I had a difficult time pulling ourselves away from them. Yum!)