Sunday, July 6, 2014

Remembering a Kind and Generous Sister, Kay

Kay with Adam
June 2006
Last week Jon's oldest sister passed away. Kay had been fighting cancer for a few years. In the end it was all through her body and it took her away from us much too soon. She was 60 years old.
Kay was a very generous person. She never had children of her own, but she loved and helped many other children (as well as many adults). She was kind and joy-filled. She loved cats, especially her cat "Peaches" who died a few years ago. Every year around my birthday I received a box  from QVC. It was always something special sent by Kay. She loved talking with and reading to the boys and over the years she gave them many really cool gifts.
Kay retired from the Michigan Department of Liquor Control a few years ago. She worked hard all her life and is remembered fondly by many co-workers and friends who attended her funeral.
We just returned home from a weekend in Michigan. It was nice to be together with almost all of Jon's family, but it was certainly a sad time for us. We had a beautiful funeral Mass and luncheon and then attended the burial of her ashes. It's difficult to believe that she's gone. We are glad that she is no longer sick and suffering. Through an almost miraculous turn of events she was able to be anointed in her last hours. We trust God's love and mercy and His divine plan for her and for all of us. But we are still sad. God did truly work and give grace to all of the family in the last days and hours and we are truly grateful.
Please pray for the repose of Kay's soul, for her family and friends, for her friend Richard, and especially for her mom. May we all know her peace and her prayers for us as well.
Many thanks to all who have been praying and who sent flowers and well wishes. It is all much appreciated.
Some favorite pictures of Kay ----
She loved cuddling up with the kids and reading with them.

She gave the BEST gifts.
This race track was a favorite for a long time.

Jon, his five sisters, and his mom a few years ago at Christmas

Kay this past Christmas.
She loved the funny gifts we gave her to celebrate her 60th birthday!

Kay with Ray in 2005.

Kay dancing with Emmett at Mary Lou's wedding.

Reading again with Ray... late 2005.

Me with all the sisters and nieces Addie and Shannon.... several years ago.
This poem was printed on the back of the funeral cards and it says exactly what Kay wished for us...

Don't grieve for me, for now I'm free,
I'm following paths God made for me
I took his hand I heard him call
Then turned, and bid farewell to all.
I could not stay another day
To laugh, to love, to sing, to play
Tasks left undone must stay that way
I found my peace... at close of day.
And if my parting left a void
Then fill it with remembered joy
A friendship shared, a laugh, a kiss
Ah yes, these things I too will miss.
Be not burdened deep with sorrow
I wish you sunshine of tomorrow
My life's been full I've savored much
Good friends, good times, a loved one's touch.
Perhaps my time seemed all too brief
Don't lengthen it now with grief
Lift up your hearts and share with me,
God wants me now. He set me free.
Rest in peace, Kay. I love you and miss you already.

Some Random Summer Fun Stuff

Some snapshots of summer so far ----

We were privileged to attend a beautiful Mass and Eucharistic procession on the Feast of Corpus Christi at Saint Peter Parish in Chillicothe, Ohio.  As a post-Vatican II Catholic, this is the FIRST time I've gotten to take part in something like this. It was so beautiful. I hope more parishes will begin to re-embrace such wonderful traditions.

A fun birthday celebration for two cuties!

Dad... this is for you.
I told Adam to go jump in a lake... and he did!

This is our outdoor guy for sure.
He got to kayak for the first time and now he wants his own kayak.

Boys can't go to a lake without dropping a fishing line in the water.
They didn't catch anything, but had fun trying.

It rains EVERY Wednesday night.
During our swim meets.
We did have a cool rainbow one week.

Our parish didn't have VBS this summer because of some renovations going on in the school, but the boys participated in VBS at a neighboring parish with some friends. They had a great time. Here's Ray showing off his tomb craft.

I read this great book. I highly recommend it.

This picture shows what an entire year of school work looks like.
We finally had our school-year evaluation with a certified teacher.
The boys officially "passed" to 3rd and 4th grade.
Now I need to put all that work away and get busy organizing for a new school year.

At the end of each school year I compile a portfolio and yearbook for each child.
The portfolio showcases samples of their basic school work as well as important/special projects from the year.
The yearbook is made (at from pictures taken throughout the year. It shows special projects, field trips, family adventures, activities, holidays.

A sample page from Ray's yearbook.

Ray's pre-race warm-up dance.
Look at that torso!
He's a mini-Michael Phelpps.
He is really good at backstroke.... came in first place as he led off his relay.

Check out these lovely ladies!
This is my goddaughter Lucy and her grandma Naomi.
Swim team is so much fun because lots of our friends are part of it as well.

Another one of our goddaughters... Cassandra... and her mom Kim.
Cassandra has been facing her fears and pushing herself to make it across the pool.
We are so proud of her and we love cheering her on each week.

Adam recovering from a super-intense butterfly race!
You should have seen those arms flailing!
He's doing great.

Ray doing the backstroke

Ray diving off the block.

Mamaw should win a medal for coming to the meet and getting DRENCHED in a monsoon!

Our fun friends!

Ella :)

Jon was excited to be an official timer... until the monsoon hit.

Swim team photo... on a morning when it was raining of course.

Ray and Adam after a long day at Cub Scout camp.
They had fun hiking, fishing, doing crafts, geocaching, and just being boys!

Father's Day!
We went to Mass, out to breakfast, gave Jon fun gifts, and went to the pool.
Ray at the orthodontist!
He gets braces on Thursday!

Spin art made at the downtown library summer reading program kick-off.

Fun with friends at the pool!

Hooray for Summer!!!!!