the ocean remembers

Today marks three years since our Rachel died. Memories of the hard stuff have started to fade and the good stuff has begun to stand out. Mauri and I were invited to join the whole Macy clan at Harbor Villa yesterday, the place in Rockaway Beach that holds years of happy memories and was a favorite for Rachel. Mauri’s brother, Howard, and his immediate family had already enjoyed a whole week together there, while our kids and their kids camped all week farther down the coast in one of their favorite spots in Manzanita.

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It was a gorgeous day, as you can see, and I enjoyed a power walk on the beach.

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Mauri had his camera aimed at me as I surfaced.

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Rachel didn’t want to miss any of this, but John is an intentional dad and Oscar is doing well. Heading toward fourth grade in the fall.

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Nate (Howard and Margi’s son) and Amy were the dinner preparers. You can see he brought his pizza oven from home for the occasion. Amy rolls the dough and Nate bakes it for 10 seconds on each side.

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Inside we loaded up our individual crusts with our favorite toppings, then Nate baked it (again). Delicious! We have one of those ovens at home too. I imagine we’ll be pulling it out again one of these days.

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Cousins John and Hannah do some clean up.

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Erin cuddles a sleepy one.

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The Brothers Macy.

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Pete behind roses from our garden.

The day was altogether lovely.

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celebrating family

I’m in Arizona on a quick trip for a specific celebration. But when I made the arrangements to take time off work, I didn’t realize I’d be here for Fathers Day too! So I’ve enjoyed two celebrations for the price of one!

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Quinn and I drove down to beautiful Oro Valley to the home of cousin Aneta’s daughter Stephanie, arriving at the appointed time with the aid of her smart phone. I’d read about the forecast thunderstorms and carried an umbrella all the way from Oregon in order to be prepared, like any Boy Scout would.

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Though it threatened with wind and a few drops of liquid sunshine, no tears were shed over a ruined party due to weather. Instead the cloud cover cooled the desert and made it ideal weather for an outdoor celebration.

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Stephanie (along with her husband, Jason, and children, Faith and Christian) did a lovely job of hosting us with a delicious meal and space to visit. I was occupied with living in the moment and didn’t do the best job of photographing the event. But you’ll get the idea.

1957-Christmas at Gordon's in Kokomo IN

You know how it is with cousins. So much shared history to go along with all those stories that hang on the family tree! In this photo of our LeMasters clan, I’m down front holding a Brownie camera, and my cousin Aneta, only three months behind me in age, is next to me. I won’t name each one but I’ll point out cousin Dave, four years our senior and in full height in the back. My sister, Carol, is front left.

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I named those three in particular so you can better appreciate the 2018 version of cousin Dave, here with Quinn. He and Sue traveled from Kokomo, Indiana, for the party.

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And here, the 2018 version of Dave’s wife, Sue (left), sister Carol (center), and Aneta.

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Also for fun and perspective, here’s a photo from a visit to our home in North Carolina in the early 1980s of Aneta and Kent (before their kids came along).

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Here they are with their girls, Stephanie and Carrie.

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Here’s everyone in attendance. You’ll see Stephanie and Jason on the far right, their kids kneeling in front with Landry (Carrie and Randy’s daughter), whose sister, Whitney, is sitting on her daddy’s knee. Find Carol and her husband, Bill, next to Stephanie.

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I threw away most of my casual shots, but this one shows Bill’s feet. Carol was mortified he had to show up at the party in his driving shoes because they walked out the door at home in Yorba Linda, CA, inadvertently leaving his dress-up shoes behind.

Such a loving sister I am. Right?

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I was so happy Quinn could get in on the fun of reconnecting with family and meeting the newest additions.

Meanwhile, back at the Anderson ranch . . .

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You’ve already been introduced to Issy Bear, but she has matured since we met her last November.

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She enjoys morning and evening walks around the neighborhood block, and I tagged along for two of those expeditions.

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Apparently she is quite predictable. Dusty foreshadowed each detour she would make to chase the bunnies along the way, when she would shift off the curb to the street and hop back on, and at what point closer to home she would “insist” they turn right rather than head in.

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100 degrees at 8 p.m. is remarkably pleasant outside,

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but this little girl was ready to splay her body parts on the cool tile floor to recover.

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Summer means summer jobs for the two college students. Quinn and I drove to Scottsdale to enjoy lunch where Marissa works.

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She drives a long way to/from work because this is the job she had while in school at Grand Canyon University. We hope she’ll be able to transfer to the ChopShop a few miles from home.

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We behaved ourselves and didn’t distract her (though she waved her awareness) but couldn’t resist choosing a high table that faced the activity hub.

Cass B-ball

My visit also opened the opportunity to cheer for Cassidy at three games of “June ball.” I’m sure it isn’t grandparently pride that sees a very strong player with lots of potential. She’ll play JV as a freshman next year at Gilbert Christian High School. (See her on the left?)

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I didn’t follow Bailey to his summer job, but he’s also gainfully employed at Shamrock Farms warehouse. But he’d rather talk about Sarah anyway. They are some of Cupid’s finest work.

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Not one of us would consider skipping church on Fathers Day or any other Sunday. (This is one of my favorite “poses,” though it’s usually walking to church rather than to the car. Some day I’ll collect them as a series.) Dusty is pointing out the progress on the new church construction, Phase I.

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Fathers Day dinner — a shrimp boil at home. What could be better?

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Tummy’s full, we lingered at the table to tell/hear “dad” stories.

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After card and gift opening, the two honored dads got comfortable for some golf viewing.

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Issy got comfortable too on Guh’s lap.

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She is adored in no small measure by her people.

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Raves and appreciation for the peanut butter pie (not pictured)!

As the senior Andersons headed to the door after golf, I invited myself to see their new house. They have made Arizona their permanent home, moving down from the Seattle area only months ago. So we made a plan for the following day.

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Quinn drove us the short distance in Arizona style (top off, AC blowing) to Neil and Randee’s beautiful new abode. I’m just so happy for their decision to move south and enjoy the rest of their retirement years in such a lovely environment. So far they’re loving it (and the close proximity to “the kids”)!

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This final photo represents the level of spoiling I received. Every morning when I surfaced from a longer-than-usual night’s sleep, one of these awaited me on the kitchen counter. Thanks for the lovely time, dear Andersons.

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family celebration

We took a little drive toward Portland on Sunday for a birthday celebration for our grand nephew, son of Derin and Andra. It rained much of the time, but that didn’t stop the crowd of 50 or 60 from enjoying some good BBQ and and reconnection with these dear ones.

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I’ll start with this family shot posted by one or the other on Instagram. The rest are just a few snaps from my own phone.

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Andra’s mom has her turn with the birthday boy.

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Then Derin’s mom.

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And of course Grandpa! Check out the photobomber.

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First cupcake!

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First birthday!

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One year old!

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#oneadaymay – week five plus mmm

As promised . . . (I know you’ve been waiting with bated breath)

1

May 29 — “How many have eight people pose for a picture of their honeymoon? #oneadaymay #seizetheday #twohoneymoons #onewithkidsonewithout”

2

May 30 — “The mail brought a four-page hand-written letter from an old friend. #oneadaymay #ohthejoy”

3

May 31 — “I finished out my work day with a surprise visit from my former boss of 14 years. He and his wife brought their newborn daughter to Mauri’s and my Oregon wedding reception, and in July, 24 years later, they will watch that same daughter marry and move to Florida. Life. #oneadaymay #finale”

And now my picks from Mauri’s #oneadaymay. Ready?

3

“#oneadaymay #peoplewouldpaymoneyforthis #foodagainsorry” [He’s a man of few written words.]

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“#oneadaymay #oneoftheseisnotliketheothers”

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“#oneadaymay #everymonday #handbells…such fun for nearly thirty years”

2

“#oneadaymay #pianostewardandris #happysteinway”

5

“#oneadaymay #appleseedsjohnny”

6

“#oneadaymay #moreroses #iremember”

7

“#oneadaymay #lastday…thanks. you’ve put a little more spring in my step these days. now…back to – you know.”

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#oneadaymay – week four

Here I am again, this time with installment four. The end is near. Since those May photos can’t be laid out in advance, I sometimes surprise myself with what photo stories I choose to share with #oneadaymay. I should “warn” you that Mauri has also been posting daily #oneadaymay photos, so I’ll be studying his collection at the end of the month and sharing my favorites with you. Then we can get to my normal as-life-happens posts. You’re very patient with me.

1

May 22 — “Last night I sent my vegetarian friend a photo of my dinner plate as a playful poke at her eating choices. After dishes I picked up my phone to read my daily portion of the New Testament (“89 Days”) and received a very timely chastisement. #oneadaymay #ouch! #crowfordinnertonight”

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May 23 — “#oneadaymay #emptyday #notevenacarwash #yawn”

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May 24 — “Assignment for work: Take a picture of this blended-family tree on our mantle and add it to Sunday’s “powerpoint” to help illustrate the sermon titled “What Shall We Remember?” #oneadaymay #happytooblige”

4

May 25 — “Somebody showed me Instagram stories and now you’re paying the price. #oneadaymay #blamecathiejo”

On Sunday, one woman told me she loved this picture and another told me it creeped her out.

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May 26 — “He’s heading out on the two-seater to spin the cranks this quiet Saturday evening. Livin’ the dream…. #oneadaymay”

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May 27 — “Pet or pest? Your view can easily be determined by whether or not you would pull this sucker off the siding and throw it in the street. #oneadaymay”

Much commenting ensued. “I don’t like what is inside it but the shell is cool!” “Dinner😇” “I toss them into the chicken coop…they love them!” “Definitely a pest. I gathered 160 from the back yard and 210 from the front before we planted marigolds and put down snail bait.” “My husband throws them into the road to allow the cars to do their thing. TOTAL AND COMPLETE PEST! Ugh” “Cool doorknob!” — to share a few.

east wall

I added this photo to the conversation with “When I married Mauri 24 years ago, this entire exterior wall was covered with them. (It was much more exposed then; these bushes need to be trimmed.) He was a little surprised I wasn’t amused by them. You know, live and let live. He had yet to learn I have no heart. 😂”

7

May 28 — “Memorial Day (off) accomplishments included planting the window box. None of the others were nearly this photogenic, so it won the #oneadaymay prize.”

 

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#oneadaymay – week three

Here is my week’s offering. Distilling my life into one photo a day is challenging in both directions. Some days I go to work, come home for lunch, go back to work, then come home for dinner and a quiet evening in a comfortable chair near Mauri and the TV. Other days we are on the go from morning to evening. Thankfully there’s a balance between the two extremes. May is a fun month because I can share both!

1

May 15 — “Since I spend hours and hours here every day, five days a week, maybe it should have its own feature in #oneadaymay. I’ll miss it when I retire in four or so months.”

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May 16 — “It’s true we have a lovely rose garden with significance to both the Macys and the Carlsons. But I feel the most pride in this peony because it’s still alive three springs after my friend Lisa added it to the plantings in our yard. Not that I have any claim at all on its success. #oneadaymay #godshandiwork”

3

May 17 — “It looks almost orchidic, but it’s actually rhodidic. #oneadaymay #coinedwords”

4

May 18 — “I usually try to hide my hands, which is hard because I need them for just about everything I do. Mean ol’ arthritis! The infinity ring reminds me daily not to waste precious time grouching about what can’t change. Be grateful I have hands! Show them off! #oneadaymay #osteo #oldage”

This post got a lot of comments. Who’da’ thought? My brother wrote: “They look like our dear Mother’s hands! Funny l have two crooked index fingers; alike!” And the following day I replied, “The veins, yes, but her knuckles weren’t gnarly like ours. Today is the anniversary of her death…1988 to 2018. Thirty years!”

A Facebook friend shared this in response:

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Ha!

5

May 19 — “Church work day! Lots accomplished, including the annual “watering” of the indoor plants. And they needed a little sunshine too. ⛅ #oneadaymay #fauxgreenery”

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May 20 — “Pity my uneventful life when this is the best I can offer for today’s #oneadaymay.”

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May 21 — “Arnie and Dan admire the work of their day, finishing up the project begun by paint scrapers Phil and Edwin. #oneadaymay#propertystewards”

Too bad I didn’t have a camera propped and ready to photograph a family of squirrels (six?) romping across the top of our backyard fence and into the apple tree. The whole event spanned all of 6 or 7 seconds, some of those with me exclaiming, “Look! Look!” But Mauri and I will remember it for a very long time.

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#oneadaymay – week two

Oops. I clicked on “publish” before I wrote the post. Sorry to those who subscribe or have this site in your reader.

1

May 8 — “At the end of a nondescript day at work, I got Facetimed by these two cuties (and their parents). A quick screenshot gave me my #oneadaymay!”

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May 9 — “I think our girl maintains her beauty well for a 56-year-old (according to the charts). #oneadaymay #mrdarcy”

3

May 10 — “Came across the picture I couldn’t find on February 21, when Billy Graham died and everyone shared their stories and pictures. #oneadaymay #maurisdadandbilly”

This post brought on a lot of comments and conversation. I was wrong to assume that all happened in February. It was cool to read my friends’ stories related to Billy Graham and his crusade ministry.

4

May 11 — “This faithful old apple tree has provided the Macy family with shade and fruit and climbing opportunities for 38 years. To say nothing of the bird and squirrel families that birthed and launched many offspring from it in its 100-plus-year lifetime. It survived amputations for the sake of adding a studio on our house and to prevent apple dents on our neighbors’ car. And now it’s time for our sons to bring their children to pay their respects and tell their childhood stories one last time. #oneadaymay #treelove”

5

May 12 — “Kathy didn’t know she would provide my #oneadaymay when she smiled so naturally at the reception following a memorial service for Uncle Keith today. Events like this seem to be the only times we get to see our Williams cousins.”

6

May 13 (Mothers Day) — “Mother was my age in this picture. Cancer would take her from us a year later. That might be the only way I don’t choose to follow in her footsteps. #andmaybethewig #oneadaymay #richheritage”

7

May 14 — “What is this? The high-noon sun shining through the stained glass, reflected on the piano. #oneadaymay #addedtomyreflectioncollection”

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