~The Ten of Us~

*A Day In Our Life*
*It Is The Sweet Simple Things of Life Which Are the Real Ones After All*
"And thank you for a house full of people I love. Amen."~Ward Elliot Hour


emily's cheerleading team
  follows-me-everywhere dog
harry who's getting old but he is everywhere we are 

our girls minus laura

savannah keeping me company



jonah and his lego project
my "after" hair...highlights, hair trim, and blowout
bran and ben at lambeth field uva when we visited a couple wks ago

lambeth field uva...original architectual structure..brandon's dorm is right behind this
livy's 9th birthday party with her sisters (audrey 10, laura 16, savannah 3, emily 12) and a good friend...they look so pretty all dressed up.


ben14 and bran 19..july
sweet 16 and beautiful laura
before haircut...maybe

some pictures
savannah 3 playing dress- up


my son who i love with all my heart went back to his 2nd year at uva. after spending  3 months with us this summer, i had a hard time sending him back.. i know he has to find his own way. i just want to go back when he was a little boy. the best times in our life. but he has best times of his own coming his way.  brandon is awesome and much loved. he is funny, smart, thought provoking, good conversationalist, good hearted, and great company.  all the kids hate to see him go because they have so much fun with him.  he's already busy getting to know his 5 roomates and going to events and meetings. classes start on tues. 17 credits this semester the most you can have plus he's trying to get an on-campus job. but he wants to reach his goals and pay his way for the most part, and keep debt down. we miss you bran only 6 more weeks til fall break


six of the kids audrey, jonah, savannah, livy, laura and emily. brandon thought he was too old to get in the picture and ben did too.
it was hot so the shade was nice..our five girls and jonah. i have some pictures of bran's birthday maybe i'll add later.


brandon's 19th birthday is today. i can remember bringing him home from the hospital and laying him in his crib. our then neighbors said enjoy having him so tiny and small because he would grow up so fast. that is the truth. i can't believe so much time has passed so quickly. i wasn't ready for it.  the last 4 yrs the hardest of my life. had no idea what i was in store for. so many things have changed. and the changes have been overwhelming at times. i have a hard time emotionally connecting and then being disconnected. my sensitivity can't always handle it. and from my experience it's going to be an ongoing issue which makes it tough.
i love being with the kids when they don't notice i'm there...watching livy, audrey, and emily play,  fix each other's hair, savannah talking to her dolls, jonah playing his cars on the bed....it's peaceful...talking to laura in the late night hours, peeking in on bran and ben trying to capture the moment for the weeks ahead when i know it'll get tough.
i've spent a lot of time away this summer taking the kids to appts, going to the pool, getting out and finding things to do....staying away is sometimes easier than having to deal with the emotions so i go when i can. I took bran to get his birthday present tonight and then we got something to eat which was a lot of food. went to the mall and shopped a little bit at my favorite store. got ice cream at ben and jerrys. talked. people watched. trying to do normal things that bring some sense of direction back. it is not as easy as it appears to be. trying to find your way back to a place where it use to come so easy .it just doesn't. happy smiles from the inside. joy. feeling anything at all. how could anyone understand if they've never experienced it.
watching bourne identity. i would love to sit down and watch the whole thing but usually only get movies in bits and pieces. unless it's late at night with my undivided attention. finding time. we're going somewhere tomorrow as a family on bran's birthday. just being together like it use to be. i want to have some real connection to my old life. it was really that important and i didn't even know it. good news...charlottesville named one of happiest cities to live in. it really is a great town. don't wont to forget that brandon is in a great place for knowledge and learning. he's excited to go back and work on his double major. a gift we're going to give him is an upgraded meal plan so he can swipe his card at the cafeteria once a day. last yr he could swipe as much as he wanted but it comes at a price. the one we're getting him is $1000 extra but he'll be eating a good meal a day. one less grocery meal needed. college is expensive but bran is so good with money he's figured out almost the exact amt he might be paying in 3 yrs. bran likes to have a plan for everything and if that doesn't work out have a back-up plan. he's got a good head on his shoulders. perfect student for uva.