Sunday, July 29, 2007

A Summer to Remember...

Tomorrow I leave Oxford for two weeks and when I return, life as a PhD student will be in full swing again. Today, I've been reflecting over this summer. I've included a brief summary of its events along with a few pictures.

This summer has been one I will never forget - both for the good and the tragic moments. It is the first summer of owning a house, the first summer for Liam to have a week with his Aunt Lulu all to himself, a summer of new friends and new hobbies like triathalon training, the corn hole game, Mexican Train Dominoes, the exciting world of Harry Potter, and boxing on the Nintendo Wii. It's been a summer to remind me that family is the most important thing! I've been reminded of this through celebrating a healthy dad who is doing so well six-months after a heart attack and open heart surgery and through the tragedy of losing a wonderful cousin due to complications following a tubing accident.

Erin Arnold Smith
October 21, 1982 to July 16, 2007
Erin was full of life and fun and excitement, and I take great comfort in knowing that she's in heaven - no doubt bringing laughter and smiles to all those around her. Chris Smith did an amazing job at her funeral of telling stories of Erin that allowed everyone there to have a chance to get to know her. She would have been so honored by the words that described her and the people there to comfort those who loved her. I didn't know this about Erin, but apparently as a small child she climbed on top of buildings in downtown Franklin looking down through the skylights into the stores and restaurants below. As Chris ended the eulogy, he ended referencing Erin walking on the skylights of heaven. I love that picture! Although we will miss Erin tremendously, I'm thankful to have the hope of seeing her again in heaven. I'm thankful that she ended life here surrounded by family who loved her dearly and she was welcomed in heaven by our Papa, our aunt Anne who we've never met, and her other grandaddy.

Here are some pictures from my summer.

Girls' Weekend - Lake Trip with Lindsay, Hayley & Amy. This is the weekend that Hayley told us she was pregnant! YAY!!!

A Day at the Memphis Zoo with PopPop, Grammy & Liam.
(It's a little blurry since they were in full-speed ahead riding on bee--r as Liam said it.)

Bath Time at Aunt Lulu's House.

Liam at Cousin Janice & Cousin John's pool after a day at the Memphis Zoo - This is one sleepy boy!

Liam at the Huntsville Hospital visiting Cousin Erin. This is his response to "Smile, Liam."