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Comin’ in Hot

2015 August 9
by Becky

I look around my house to see clutter and chaos, piles of unopened packages and mail, a mountain of laundry, an empty fridge. A whole day of travel ended with Ethan getting off the plane with a fever of 102, chills, and a tummy ache. There were no less than five wake-ups last night between the two kids, leaving Stu and I totally exhausted this morning. The kids, luckily, don’t seem all the phased.


We’ve just returned from four days away, a last minute trip to Nebraska to celebrate the life of Stu’s grandpa Johnson, a wonderful man who left us far too soon. It was four days of tears, laughs, memories, stories with all members of Stu’s maternal family. Ethan was thrilled for a surprise visit with is cousin Weston, but he learned more about life and death than we’d prepared. He understood more than we thought, very sad to know the “nice grandpa with the red hat” was gone.

There were bright spots amidst the sadness.



As last minute trips usually are, ours was doomed from the start. We played the Drive vs Fly game for about two minutes before choosing a 45 minute flight over 8+ hours in the car. I was scrambled to cover my duties of a baby shower that happened on Saturday and scheduled make-up days for Ethan’s much anticipated swim camp. The shower was (apparently) a hit, just look at these cookies the talented Kristin from Thirdstory(ies) stayed up till 4am icing and wrapping. She’s unstoppable.

Two highlights:
1. The day we left, Stu lost his wallet. We looked everywhere before canceling everything and grabbing his passport to get him on the plane.

2. I’d purchased a special gift for Stu, a bottle of whiskey he’s been coveting for months, and hid it in the back of my car, in a compartment near the spare tire, planning to remove it within a day or so. He found it, the stinker, but felt so bad about ruining the surprise that he put it back in the hiding spot. Fast forward to getting home last night, we opened our car and were hit with a musty, yeasty smell. It took till this morning to figure out, in the midst of travel plans, we’d completely forgotten the whiskey, which had exploded. In my brand new car. So that’s what I’ll be doing this afternoon.

Ethan’s resting today, Stu’s catching up on missed work, and I took Finn to a 1st birthday party even though I was in a semi-zombie state, because frankly a whole Sunday trapped in the house would make me officially insane.

Overall the trip was the perfect way to say goodbye to grandpa. Surrounded by memories and family, just as he would want. I couldn’t stop looking at old family photos, this one of him with his four daughters (Stu’s mom in the middle) is probably my favorite.


I was honored to contribute a few I’ve taken, capturing moments with grandpa was top priority at family gatherings these last few years.  I feel lucky to have spent the last 12+ years knowing Sam, and so happy Ethan knew him, even if it was just a little. Finn will hear endless of stories of hard work, family gatherings, and how Stu’s life was so greatly affected by his grandpa.

Five minutes after we arrived home last night, we found Stu’s wallet.
(It was under the bed)


One Response
  1. Linda Johnson permalink
    August 10, 2015

    Beautiful blog Becky. Thank you so much for everything and my dad loved you all so much. Wish he could have been around longer to enjoy Finn.

    The missing wallet has been found!

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