Thursday, May 17, 2012

A Box With No Lid

I excel at compartmentalizing life. I'm not sure if that's good or bad but nevertheless its true. There are some things in this life however, that refuse to be compartmentalized. They spill over into all the minutes of your day. Waking or sleeping they burrow into your head and heart, the sharpness sometimes catching you unaware. They seep out tear by tear or gush in an unexpected avalanche of memory and somehow still, life carries on. The real and the surreal become next door neighbors.

Peace is not a cliche.
His grace is sufficient.

We have had a couple of weeks of high highs and the lowest of lows. Life is rarely about just one thing and for that I'm grateful. Milestones are marked and we must both mourn and celebrate. Never have the words recorded in Ecclesiastes 3 rung so true..."There is a time for everything and a season for every activity under the heavens..."

Daughter2 celebrated a big milestone the first weekend in May, and she is now officially a college graduate.

No more tuition! Whoohoo!

Wait. Grad school. Darn.
We are praying she finds a teaching job to go with her brand new diploma.
She is so ready to teach.
Plus it would help pay for that extra schooling.
Just sayin'.

My precious hilarious beautiful girl will make an excellent teacher. She has the passion and the heart and the smarts.

Family joined us for the weekend's events. I'm sure that big smile is for us and has nothing to do with the boyfriend arriving from out of town. ahem.

Daughter1 turned up in South Carolina a lot lighter (if such a thing is even possible). She had 12 inches cut from her hair the day before. I love knowing a cancer patient somewhere will have a beautiful blond wig to help make the darkness a little bit brighter.


A word that is so dear to our hearts.

We've spent a lot of hours in this small town and especially on this gorgeous campus.

The fountains and the flowers and the lake...

The rose garden...

Yes, there is a rose garden.
Tuition dollars must be spent somewhere.

I kid!
It's possible to obtain a first class education while surrounded by roses.
Preferable in fact.

Pomp and Circumstance gets me every time.
2012...not so long ago that year seemed like a world away.
Hello world.

I love this picture. You have to click on to see but she is in the middle seats, turned round in her chair and waving up at us in the stands.

Hubs and I both flashed back to a kindergarten program where, upon spotting us in the audience with our video camera, she called out (loudly) asking, 'Can you see me?'

We see you Daughter2.
You are impossible to miss.

"There is a time for everything and a season for every activity under the heavens..."

In weeping and laughing, in mourning and dancing, this much I know-
God is good.


  1. Beautiful - and written with love.

  2. It's so funny- I keep thinking that each graduation will be easier. But it's not, is it? It still causes all those memories of them at a younger age and the realization that they have come into their own- quite wonderfully, I might add. Next May, we have DD4's college graduation AND DD3's graduation from grad school. I don't know how I'm going to take TWO. Lots of tissue will be involved though, I know that. I was tearing up just reading about your DD's graduation! :) Hope the family is doing well- I'm still praying for everyone.

  3. How true are these words you have written so eloquently. Felt that way at my son's wedding ...very happy for them and us, but knowing sadness alongside ...that some relatives weren't able to make it because of cancer . Congrats to your generous, go - getter girl. I hope she is soon matched up with a classroom full of kids who need her and vice versa.

  4. This was a fabulous recap! not too many words like you lead me to believe-the perfect amount. and amazing pictures too!!

  5. Ahhh, I felt every word, even the unsaid ones. ;)
    Congratulations to Daughter2! Congratulations to her parents too!!
    I love Daughter1's hair cut, it's very cute yet grown up too!
    Exactly 1 month from today I will also have a #2 child graduate! Yikes.

  6. I'm so glad you got to enjoy that weekend and the amazing accomplishment it represents for ALL of you.

  7. CONGRATS to your daughter2!

  8. What a beautiful post. Joy in the midst of pain.
    Congratulations to your daughter on her graduation. You have some beautiful girls! (as though you didn't already know that!)

    Psalm 62:1-2

  9. Sending you a virtual ((hug)) from a virtual friend. Well, I am a real person, but you get my point. ;)

  10. "The real and the surreal become next door neighbors." I love this quote... I will use this I am sure (crediting you of course) since I feel this way so much these days. Congratulations to your lovely daughter on her achievement.
    We continue to lift your whole family up in prayer.

  11. It is so true, although at times not easy to live. Daughter 2 is just lovely and I totally love Daughter 1's new hair-do! Your girls are keepers!

  12. Congrats to your Daughter2! And yes God is good through it all always!

  13. such wonderful celebration time...and my heart fills with your love for them and your niece. May God fill you with golden memories of ALL the girls and their times together
    I was holding a 6-day old babygirl on Tuesday; it was wonderful kissing and touching that velvety skin, and my heart hurt for the difficulties she may encounter as she grows in this ever-changing world.
    have a great weekend.

  14. So wonderful that you had joy mixed with the grief. God is definitely good! What an amazing day for your daughter - big milestone and lots of family. What could be better?

    Oh, how I look forward to those "no more tuition" days. Both of ours will graduate in 2014!

  15. Lovely! And Congratulations!

  16. What a special post. Congratulations to your dd2! I can tell how proud you are of her. Even though your heart must have been hurting at the same time, I can see it was filled with joy as well. How bitter sweet this time of life is!

  17. A beautiful posts. Your words expressed perfectly. Congratulations! The pictures are beautiful and I especially like her waving from the seats!

  18. I think it is good that you got to experience this joy, even though your heart was still feeling so much grief. I guess we call that life. All the best to your new graduate in all that is ahead of her.

  19. "Peace is not a cliche.
    His grace is sufficient."

    Such an important thing to KNOW.

    Congratulations Mama, a most lovely post, daughter, and family!

  20. So very thankful that you and your family had the opportunity to rejoice at such a happy occasion, even in the midst of so much heartache. I know you felt God's presence through it all. Big congrats to your girl for all she's accomplished!

  21. Congratulations! #2 daughter graduates tomorrow from university.
    Just know I am still thinking and praying for you all.

  22. the last picture and quotes....God is good! Have a wonderful weekend!

  23. What a beautiful post. And what a blessing that there was joy mixed in with the sadness of the last week or two. Congratulations to Daughter2 and the rest of her family!

  24. What a beautiful post, Joyce! You always seem to know just the right words to say, and your photographs always compliment your words :) Best wishes to your lovely daughter! (Kathy)

  25. what a wonderful day with your graduate! Congrats to her and you for your support through that process. The roses are beautiful, your family is beautiful, and yes, God's grace is beautiful (and sufficient.) :-)

  26. Beautiful girls...beautiful family...beautiful memories important especially now. Hugs to you as I share your joy and continue to pray for your family.

  27. what a great day and time of your life--i rejoice with you!

  28. Congrats! We were celebrating as well, but I haven't gotten my pictures up yet. I've got a huge party at my house until Sunday, so maybe a graduation post on Monday.

    Still praying for you and your extended family every day. It's bittersweet to celebrate and mourn at the same time, but it does make you appreciate all the moments we get. Blessings!

  29. this post made me a bit teary... congratulations to your beautiful girl!!

  30. I thought this was a beautiful recognition of the fact that life changes so quickly. Thanks for that.

    On another note, I love your daughter's hair! Very flattering :)

  31. What a wonderful post - massive congrats to Daughter 2! A whole new chapter is about to begin!

  32. Love all the pictures! Congratulations!

  33. Congrats! Such beautiful pictures of all of you! We are behind on our blog reading! :)