Thursday, May 10, 2012

Welcome Home!

I have an in-flight ritual.  I sit down and as soon as the initial take off butterflies settle, I pull out my legal pad and begin writing a letter to Zach.  Today, I sat down, pulled out the legal pad, and started crying.  Yup, crying.  The poor kid next to me.  Happy tears - happy tears that in a few short hours I will get to see my baby brother.  For all of you reading (yes, all 7 of you - that's being generous), you already know how much that guy means to me.  He's a gift from God.  Seriously.  He is the most fun-loving, kind and sensitive little guy.  He has a soft spot in the hearts of everyone in our family.  Of course, we love each other dearly, but Zach, he's special (and no, not in the short bus kind of way).  I know my siblings reading this won't hesitate to agree with me.  It's tough to articulate (even for me) how much he brings to our lives.  Anyway, the poor kid next to me, really.

Let's just say that as fast as these past two years have gone by, Zach's presence was really missed.  I can speak for all of us when I say we are SO excited to have him back.  Just to be able to Skype (or FaceTime, now) him randomly during the week will be awesome.  I have missed harassing him!

I am excited for Zach to get back in the grove of things, too.  He has a lot of catching up to do -
  1. Meet DEAN - he hasn't met the little guy.  When I miss him so much it hurts, I think of how Zach has not been able to even meet him and it makes my little heart ache a little less.
  2. Meet Hazel-Pop - he says babies don't do much when they are little anyway, so they are kind of boring.  Lucky for Zach, he missed the first few months (um, my favorite - they are SO sweet and cuddly and soft and cute and drooly and amazing).  I can't wait to see her huge smile when she recognizes him.
  3. Meet Pete - my handsome.  After Pete finishes teasing him for being a redhead, they will get along like crazy.  Plus, to ensure he wins over my twin's heart, he sent me with the 2010 Giants World Series DVD.  He cannot believe that Zach missed the Giants win AND Jimmer.  So, I'm giving Zach a BYU Jimmermania DVD to recap the missed basketball time. Shhh, don't tell.
  4. Give Mom enough hugs to make up for the two years.
  5. Train for the 70 mile relay race that Dad signed him (US) for.
There's so much more he has to do, but those are just some highlights.  As happy as I am that he is coming home, I am just as happy that he loved his experiences in Texas.  This excerpt from his very last email sums things up pretty well:

" desires to serve have increased so much.  (I know that's true because when dad mentioned that there were a lot of chores at home, I didn't instantly think of my refuge, hiding spot (el inodoro -translate that one) [editor's note - that means toilet]
I can't really explain the way i feel right now.  All i know is that I will serve the Lord faithfully for the rest of my life."
He will.  He will do it in so many different ways.  He's going to meet a hottie wife and have some cute little munchkins.  He is going to succeed in the medical field and help others (just like my pops) daily.  He is going to keep being the amazing brother, son, uncle, friend, cousin and grandson that he has been his entire life. 
Anyway, I better get to work since I am working "remotely" (code for answering emails if they come in) for the next two days so I can welcome Z Wag home (and see my munchkins, siblings, parents and friends that I've missed so dearly)!
EEEKKSSS - so pumped!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Z Dubs and Little Loves

I clearly have dropped the ball on this whole blog thing (sorry, Zach). Funny thing is that I don't think he will really mind. From what it sounds like, he is having the time of his life in Texas, even learning how to speak Tongan? And homeboy is coming back in a month - A MONTH. I cannot believe it. I mean, it feels like he missed a lot, but at the same time, it feels like he just left. Sounds stupid, I know...but it's real.

In any event, I am a busy bee out here in Chicago. Working in "big law" is no joke. There's a reason they give you "unlimited" vacation - you don't have any time to take it. But really, I am enjoying it and learning a lot. I am really loving Chicago too - the mildest winter yet and I am finally making some great friends. I had some great friends from school, but they moved to NY, Houston, you name it. It's odd trying to make friends as a working adult (yeah, I am an adult now). For a while there I was searching for the friend-making equivalent of Fortunately, I didn't need it and only went on a couple awkward girl dates to find some friends that I really connect with.

Honestly, over the past 10/11 months since I last updated, all I have been doing is working, hanging out with Pete, traveling back to Napa for my BFs wedding in September, facetiming my adorable nieces and nephews...trip to Antigua in there...OH and little miss Hazel joined my life.

Every time a new miracle joins my world I am amazed at how my little heart makes room for that as soon as they enter this world and I see a photo or hear a cry...I am unabashedly and irrevocably in absolute love. The power my little loves have over me is indescribable. I love them with every single inch of my being and thinking about that love, what the tiny little bundle evokes from my imperfect person...overwhelms me. Every little being that joins my world makes me feel all that more complete. It is like I can not even fathom what my world was like before they were in it. And it aches that I cannot see them nearly as much as I would like. BUT, they will grow up knowing Auntie Erin loves them - that I am certain of!

I can only imagine what it will feel like when I someday have one myself. (Shhh, don't tell Pete - we have a few steps to take first!)

I am a lucky lady - so happy my loved ones are happy, healthy and prosperous. Because if they are happy, I cannot help but be the same.

Here's to 11 more months of hard work, love, travels, family time and fun. I know trials and oopsies will be mixed in there, but I've got some stellar folks to keep me moving forward.

And for that. I thank you.