Thursday, June 19, 2008

Get comfie, this is a LONG one! Hehe

Hello, my sweet friends...

WOW, I can hardly believe it's been almost two weeks since my last post. I'm struggling to try to remember where all this time has gone. Perhaps I can just start as far back as I can remember and hit the highlights? O:-)

Okay, first - if there are any men readers here that happen to be someone's daddy, then I'd like to wish you a belated, VERY HAPPY Father's Day! My apologies for not getting my "well wishes" out BEFORE your big day. Fatherhood is a truly amazing gift that GOD has given the men in our lives. Being a parent is such a blessing and I do hope that it's never taken for granted. (I say this because I've done just that with the gift of being a mom to our little ones) I ashamedly tell you that I've missed so many moments that I'll never get back doing things that could've waited. All of that said to say that I hope and pray that we realize the role we play in our children's lives and that we'll cherish every moment.

Link is an AMAZING daddy and it's always pure JOY to watch him play with our boys! Here are a few pics of him with our little men...

This one almost brings tears to my eyes... You can see Link's love for Brent as he gently caresses his head.. at the same time you can almost see his heart breaking

Okay.. I'm going to move on with our rewind.... or I'll end up "a mess" and this will be another post that will end up abandoned before I ever get started.

We were blessed to be able to keep my sister's children last week while she and her husband celebrated their anniversary. (15 years, I think?) Yes, having 2 extra kiddos around was a lot of fun! ESPECIALLY when it's those two! Ashley has become one of my very best friends (she's almost 14!).

Clay was Brent's best bud and is now filling the role of a much missed older brother. He and the boys get out and ride through the pasture (they're happiest when it's nice and muddy)! They like to build things together, play games, and do lots of other wild and crazy boy things. (Most I'm sure they hope we won't learn about... hehe)

Ashley took good care of me while she was here. She helped keep the housework done and was great mental support as I conquered some work in Brent's room. I'm in one of those places that I wanted to do SOMETHING, but I didn't really want to change what was his. SOOO... I bought some new bedding - a comforter that I KNOW he'd have LOVED and I started hanging some of his things.

We were given a nice tapestry by Link's family when we lost Brent. It's got three beautiful bucks on it. Two over to one side, and one on the other. They said it was "our three bucks." Well, since Brent LOVED to hunt I thought it was only fitting to hang it above his bed. There's also a photo of Zach & Gabe that I had blown up - it's on canvas... it's now hanging on the wall in Brent's room. I KNOW that Brent would LOVE the new look of his room and I think that kept me from feeling guilty about changing a few things.

I struggle at times with how to deal with things like that... I want to respect his memory, and yet there are things that I know he'd want to see changed. It's crazy... just more mental struggle that I suppose I'll have to work through.

My friend Kim asked about seeing the tapestry.. so I thought I'd go ahead and share some pictures of Brent's room. Now, let me add a disclaimer... I do NOT claim to be an interior decorator! Much of what you'll see are things that were there while Brent was still here. His door is EXACTLY as it was.. the things hanging on and around his windows are the same. Most of what I did was add new bedding and hang the tapestry (and some photos). I also put out more pics of Brent and the boys. One other thing.. the REALLY LOUD paint is from when we first built the house. It was "cute" with their stuff when they were 7, 5, and 2, maybe not so much now. However this is another of those "things" that I'm just not ready to change.

Well, that cleaning frenzy sparked another...
I cleaned out my closet and in doing so I found a box of baby things that I'd saved. Inside of Brent's baby book was the first store bought pregnancy test, the little band that was on his wrist (or was it his ankle?) while in the hospital, along with some other items. I started to flip through the pages of that baby book and began to read about the things he did at one month.. then two. I read (and remembered) how he used to like to twist my hair and sometimes suck on it to fall asleep. I attempted to tell Link of my find, but all I could get out was that I found the first copy of Brent's little foot... then I began to sob. He held me and reminded me that I'd have him back one day.. we just have to be patient.

So those are a few of the things that we've experienced lately.....

Now, to try to steer us back to happier thoughts... I've also kept Allie Grace a few times in recent days. You know I can't resist taking pictures! These are a few of my favorites of her....

Okay, I PROMISE that I'll try not to be gone so long the next time. I can't say how much I've missed all of you and how BLESSED I am to know that you're still checking in. Oh, I've also enjoyed reading all the sweet comments you've left. I hope to start making my way around to your blogs soon to start catching up. THANKS AGAIN for your support!

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A Stone Gatherer said...

Allie is beautiful! Also if you would be up to it I would love to see pictures of Brents room! The tapestry sounds just perfect!

Katie said...

Hey! I enjoyed the update! Your doing better than me i went two months without updating my blog so kuddos to you Have a wonderfull day!

Johnson Party of seven! said...

Hey Tonya-
You are so right- Link is an amazing daddy! The love and compassion he has for all his boys- well, it is just very touching. He is so gentle and you could just see it in Brent's eyes that he was comforted by not only his heavenly father but also his daddy here on earth.

Give Clay and Ashley my love. I enjoyed getting to know them when I was there. I really wish I could get back down there but you know how it is with Hutton. Soon I hope!

Love you!

Melanie said...

Hi, Tonya! I enjoy your long updates. Also so full of fun and life!

I loved seeing the pictures of Brent's room. After reading so much about him for so long, it gives a great insight to his personality and the things that he loved! I can't even begin to imagine how hard it must be to make any changes to his things, but I'm sure that as time goes by you will know exactly how to keep it as it is or changes to make along the way.

That Allie just gets cuter all the time! What a cutie!

I pray you all have a great weekend!

Amy said...

like you I too have been away from my blog for a little while. Just stopping in for a few things. I have been checking on yours daily though. Glad to see you back. Love the pictures you posted.

Stephanie said...

What a sweet post! An interior decorator can't decorate YOUR house with more heart than how you decorated Brent's room. My heart goes out to you and your "find". Link is will have him back one day b/c this isn't the end of the story.

I too have been spending time away from the computer, so I apologize for not getting around here as often as I would like. BTW, I see that you took lots of cute pictures of Allie Grace~I bet that is a drop in the bucket compared to the number that you didn't post. She is so cute!

Love YOU!

Dawn ~ ^i^Brandon^i^, Jordan, & Seth's Mom said...

Oh My..I Loved reading an update. I really am digging those tye died t'shirts. We LOVE those kinds of things! And I ALWAYS love looking at pictures of others memories and life. Crazy I don't have so many on my blog!!! Haven't quite got that completely down yet.

Also.......I know "changing" Brent's room even if it were just a little is a big thing. I still have not been able to change Brandon's. We are about to, and sometimes the very thought of it takes my breath away. HOWEVER...Seth is going to take Brandon's room and make it "his and Brandon's". I know without doubt Brandon would love that. It's just getting to that point. So I completely understand. Right there with ya girl!

Well...just wanted to say I was glad to see your new post, and what you have been up to. Keep breathing, keep pressing on, and THIS is only temporary ~ THANK YOU JESUS!!!


A Stone Gatherer said...

O.K. that room looks great! I love the comforter and I love the green paint! The pictures are wonderful! Thanks for sharing Tonya! I wish I could give you a big hug too! Well here (( ))! Concern yourself bear hugged!!!

Susan said...

Hey Tonya,

YOU'VE been GREATLY missed!!

Thanks for the update.

I just loved Brent's room, that spread is so beautiful, and the tapestry is just perfect.

I really love the color is his room. (I remember telling you that before.) It works great.

I know he would just love his room Tonya, and can only "imagine" what kind of room he is in now as he worships the King of Kings and Lord of Lords!

I'll look forward to seeing that room, IN PERSON... soon.

Oh, loved the pictures of the boys on the canvas, cool.

LOVE YOU, MISS YOU and yes, it's time we talk again♥

Welcome back to blog-land!

Faith Hope Love Mama said...

So glad to see your back on the blog. I've missed you!
The posting with Brent's room and his memory box you found had me in tears. I'm sorry but it's hard to think of your pain and I just want to give you a big old hug.
I am so glad you had your little one's to keep you busy and entertained. Sometimes they are a great distraction and that in itself can be a great blessing. Allie Grace is beautiful. She is probably so much fun. I can't wait to be an auntie some day. Blessings to you sweet friend and glad to see you back.

Paula (SweetPea) said...

I have been thinking about you. I have my blog list up and running so I can see when all my buddies post their "thangs". I'm glad to hear from you. It sounds things have been up and down. I can relate to that up and down roller coaster ride for sure. Though I cannot relate to motherhood nor losing a child, I do understand the "ride". I am SO glad God has blessed you during these rough times with such joys as having your sister's children and also that cute little one. I must've missed "who" she is except for her name...I'm assuming a neice. I bet it was a nice time with her and great distraction!

Thanks for all the pics...the green wasn't as "loud" as I thought when you spoke of it. But I'm all about color...any color is better than white or cream on the walls.

Luv2U, my friend.

Eve said...

I can't begin to tell you how sorry I am that you lost your son. It makes all my troubles seem so small. I love that pic of your DH and Brent. Now that is a look of pure unconditional love on his face. Take care. I also live in MS on the Coast, in Gulfport.

lori said...

We are happy that you popped in....what beautiful pics...what a beautiful life you had with Brent...too short, but you are right, patience...

Hugs to you girl...steps on the steps..and that baby girl is a doll!
great pics! too cute..makes me miss that age...

hugs to you...peace today...

Cheryl said...

I loved seeing the pictures of Brent's room. It really looks like a comfortable boys room. I'm sure that he was happy there. Hope you have a wonderful week! God Bless you and your family.

Greg P. said...

Tonya, I haven't been on your blog in quite awhile. The memories in the pictures are priceless.

Also, the pictures of Allie just reached out and grabbed my heart. God bless her and all of you too.

Pamela (MrsJoeB) said...

My goodness. You have ben busy. what a journey you have been on, your whole family has been on. Thank you for sharing the pictures and your son's life. Allie Grace is beautiful too. You are a women of courage and I admire you and your heart.


In His Graces~Pamela

Tracy said...

What beautiful, beautiful photos! Thank you so much for sharing those. Those pictures of your hubby with those boys are priceless...especially the one where he's touching Brent's head.
So happy you had your sister's kids for a few days and that it was such a great time for everyone. = ) Miss Allie Grace has got some of the most adorable expressions ever...what a cutie!
Nice to hear what's been going on...

Tracy = )