Saturday, December 20, 2014


This was written in July. Yup, five months ago. And I never hit "Publish". So here it is in all of it's barely edited glory, with a lovely abrupt ending. 

It’s ten o’clock on a Friday night and I’m bravely warily cracking open my MacBook to plunk out some words for the first time in months.

Interstate is flying by as I type. We are somewhere in Nebraska. Packed into a fifteen passenger van with most of my siblings, my parents, my nephew, and all our crap luggage, the wind is whipping in my face as my brother drives us safely down the interstate. No air conditioning in a van this large on a trip this long may sound like a recipe for disaster. I am amazingly blessed to be able to say it has gone more smoothly than I ever imagined it would and we are actually enjoying the road trip (mostly).  The whole windows open at 75mph thing does make for some crazy windblown hair though, I must say.

We are driving through the night back from an incredible week in Colorado. How to put the beauty and heart connections with those I love into words seems impossible. Thankfully I have hundreds of pictures to do some of the talking for me.

(I won’t post all of them. Pinky promise.)

Now that I just spent an hour going through the pictures from iPhone, I return to this attempt at writing.

Getting away for over a week cleared my head a bit.

I’m dreaming a little bit more.

I’m worshipping my God with a bigger heart.

And I’m reminded of so many little life lessons…  

…the need for more than five hours of sleep at night (seriously, life doesn’t have to be so frigging busy)
…to slow down (repeat sentence above)
…to not get caught up in the day-to-day crap of life (repeat again)
…to memorize the little moments and imprint them on my brain…
…the feeling of my six-month-old nephew holding my hand while he sleeps in his car seat on our eighteen hour drive
…the absolutely breathtaking beauty of the mountains (pictures just cannot do it justice)
…splitting cupcakes from the cupcake shop in downtown Parker
…laughing til’ my sides hurt while playing Balderdash with family until 10:30pm
…delicious meals shared around the fire on the deck with siblings and parents and cousins and aunts and uncles
…walks and hikes through stunning beauty surrounded by twenty-some family members (beyond precious)
…snuggling my sleeping nephew while riding the shuttle through Rocky Mountain National Park
…driving through the foothills by Fort Collins
…watching my cousin marry her best friend
…the kinks in my neck and back from sleeping in the van all night (seriously, it makes for good memories, guys)
…climbing a canyon while watching lightening in the distance
…watching my  “little” brother fix some car problems in the middle of the mountains (and enjoying the extra time to stretch my legs)
…sharing a room with my baby sister for a week (sorta like a slumber party every night…except I’m too old to stay up and have much fun that many nights in a row)
…the thud of my heart when watching my brothers climb on rocks in the mountains and canyons
…throwing snowballs at siblings and cousins in July 
…the countless minutes setting up (huge) family photos

…chatting with random strangers at rest stops and gas stations and grocery stores (“I thought your shirt said ‘kissed by a slug’!)

 It is now Sunday morning and I'm laying on my deck back here in Wisconsin. The breeze is blowing, Spotify is playing, my dog is laying on the deck next to me.

We survived our twenty-four hour trip. We survived our first gulps of the insane humidity of our homestate. We survived swatting those first few mosquitos at the Wisconsin welcome center (ironic, yes?).

(For the record, I do love my home state.)

I smothered my dog in hugs and kisses and she smothered me right back (sheer happiness on both sides).

A bottle of wine was cracked open and several hours were spent with my roomies. They enjoyed a few too many laughs at my expense (apparently I become hysterically amusing after a twenty-four hour roadtrip and next to no sleep). A short walk and stop at the park was made (more entertainment). We caught a few more episodes of the household TV show (any Longmire fans out there?).

My room is covered with stuff. It's in the state of, Naomi-needed-to-grab-a-few-things-but-had-no-energy-to-unpack-or-put-anything-away-so-it's-all-just-puked-all-over-her-room. (I'm headed inside to remedy the situation in a little while.)

I may be headed into the house sooner than I planned if the big rumble of thunder I just heard is any indication. My dog is going crazy so I should probably let her inside so she can crawl in a corner of the basement (thunderstorms are scary, folks). She is now whining in my ear like she's going to die.

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