The days at Shady Acres have been flying by. This weekend, a healthy portion of Certain Man’s extended family will be here for a Ralph and Sue Yutzy Family reunion. Daniel has three sisters, one of which has never married. His sister that is next in line has seven children, all married. One of her sons has no children, one son has one child. But the remaining five have 28 among them (and at least one more on the way). His younger sister had four children — three of which are married. Between the three that are married, there are 16 Grandchildren with another on the way.
Certain Man’s late brother, Joseph’s family, swells the numbers by Seven.
But then there is Certain Man and CMW. We have four grandchildren. Four.
This is by God’s divine plan. If had been by the will of Grammy, there would certainly be a whole lot more. And to be honest, if children would be born just because a couple desires children, there would be a whole lot more, too. But these wonderful grandchildren of Certain Man and CMW are exceedingly precious in our sight. Oh! How we love them.
Anyhow, with those who aren’t able to make it (Raph and Gina from our family, and a number of others in both Rachel and Ivan’s family and all of Ruth and Andrew’s family, we are looking at 50 who will descend upon us for a few days of family fun and fellowship. ( Just in case anyone wants to know the total number of great grandchildren, there are 55. And most of them are under ten). Such a golden, lovely resource! Oh, how we love the children!
CMW has been planting flowers in the nooks and crannies around Shady Acres. It has been a bit frustrating, as most of the pretty flowers need full sun, But there is no such environment around the old farm house. So She has planted suitable things (as well as unsuitable, I fear) and prays for blessing on her pretty-pretties. She found a wonderful array of flowers at the Greenwood Mennonite School festival last weekend and almost all of them are planted. A visit to a local greenhouse yielded a few more to gladden her heart.
Last evening, Nettie and CMW were on the patio planting and arranging and trying to make some order out of the individual plants. Nettie enjoys plants and the outdoors. She has been a bit on the miffed side ever since CM and CMW went to Missouri, Iowa and Nebraska a few weeks ago, but a few evenings on the patio “helping” has improved her mood considerably.
CMW always feels more than a little disquieted when Nettie is off her eggs. I never know if she will decide that she needs to go to the police to confess something that she has decided she is responsible for, or if she will think she has an incurable disease, or if she will decide that we don’t want her anymore, or that if she would just find somewhere else to live, all the adult children of Certain Man and Certain Wife would come home with all the grandchildren to LIVE! (Help the poor and the needy!) Even though these things are so preposterous, Nettie really does believe them to be true and it takes a great deal of emotional energy to help her over the bumps in the road to where she is able to function again with some degree of reality.
Anyhow. Nettie has been suffering through a psychotic episode for the last few weeks, but helping to plant flowers, even though she is just sitting in the outdoor rocker, watching and giving some suggestions, has been helpful. Last night we planted flowers until it was too dark to see. Nettie came happily into the house to get ready for bed. CMW came into the house, too. Wowser! Was she ever tired! The kitchen still needed attention, and Cecilia and Nettie needed their bedtime meds. The Monday laundry was winding down and CMW couldn’t understand why she felt so out of sorts. It had been a good day. Along about 10:30, Certain Man picked up the laundry that went up to the Master Bedroom and announced that he was heading for bed. Again, CMW didn’t know why it affected her the way it did, but she suddenly felt very lonely and put upon. Then help descended in the form of Middle Daughter and the kitchen got finished up and the evening work was finally finished.
CMW climbed the stairs to the room that is so comfy and a sure refuge in life’s storms. She discovered CM to be so fast asleep that he never budged a bit when she came into the room. He has been working so hard, too, trying to get ready for the weekend, and she looked at his face, so exhausted and yet so peaceful and she prayed that she would not awaken him. Once again, she thought of how grateful she is for a shower, a comfortable bed, a pillow to help with the knots in the neck, a husband that she trusts with no fear of abuse or intentional hurt.
It was a tough night — CMW woke this morning with a fever and aching all over. Today has been a day to sit on the chair and sleep. The thing is, CMW believes that this is a gift to her from her Heavenly Father. There were so many things on the agenda for this week that she wasn’t sure how she would ever get things done and still get ready for the reunion. Major things like a yearly home inspection, dentist appointment for Sweet Mama and a neurology appointment for Cecilia–all this week. When she read the thermometer this morning and it was at 101 degrees she decided that she would cancel everything. And she did! Without a single qualm. Suddenly, even with the fever and all over aches, the week looked doable. And she calls that an incredible gift.
And that is the news from Shady Acres where Certain Man has betaken himself to bed and CMW is about to follow.
My heart gives grateful praise.