10 Days Due East

The end of July I went home10295711_557150151063178_7084369117382111471_n to Pennsylvania to help care for my mother. She had macular hole surgery and for 14 days post surgery she was required to have her head down, as in not just tilted forward a wee bit but like parallel to the floor kinda down. This would allow the hole to heal properly. She could get up every hour for a brief 10min break.

So, here she sat.

The chair was courtesy of the dr office and mom found it for the most part comfy. For a different position she would lay on her side on the couch with her head propped on a pillow and her nose pointed down. At the end of 14 days mom was more than relieved to hear that all her careful effort and patience had paid off and her macular had healed.

Just Gavin and I flew up leaving poor Jason at home all alone. On the flight up we flew with Gavin’s cousin, Faye. And, for the record, I just want to say how fabulous she is. It was a complete stress free trip. I never had to even worry about Gavin-dear. Every time I even tried to worry, she was right there helping to care for him or just reading into situations and holding him or whatever necessary to help me out.


Like I said, she was fabulous.
And, she is a fabulous friend to, by the way. If I could choose to fly with anyone in the stead of hubby, I would pick her. She’s a win-win. She helps care for baby AND we talk and talk and talk.

At Nanna’s house Gavin stayed busy.

On trips to Pa, 2 people groups are a MUST see for me.

My bridesmaids

This fun, encouraging, challenging, life giving group of 4 happens to have a name. I think one random wknd we were together, maybe we were like 19ish, we realized we all were donned in the color blue. Since then we branded ourselves – The Blue Crew. It’s weird. But it stuck.

These are my fiends that no matter what happens from each gathering to the next we chat and chat like good old friends. Yes, there is space between us and therefore we don’t always know every detail of each others lives but we connect. Like, family, we connect. We listen, learn, share and laugh. We get each other. We care for each other – even when we differ in opinion. Because we go way back. Because we are friends. We click. We’re besties.
I’m so glad I have each of you’re handprints stamped on my life, Lucy, Marie and Monica! I am a better person because of your mark.


We picnicked at the park – dug in like a boss.


This particular Maid of Honor I haven’t seen in over a year and a half. When I was up last winter she decided to hop over to Africa of all things.
Fun Fact: she randomly stayed at Mom’s house with us for the wknd. What was originally planned as one night merged into two nights. It was like my single, slumber party days.
Love you Teresa!

PS: Teresa, that Goodwill trip with you, dear, is treasured and tucked away deep in my heart for years to come. Shopping with a friend like you at a Goodwill like that was so, so, so every bit of crazy and chatty, filled with hilarious remarks and topped with laughter from you and me that it makes my heart sing. Glad that crazy hasn’t changed with us at our age.


Then there’s Lauren in the city. Of all my bridesmaids, she is the most recent friended. We meet 6 years ago but only really bonded and connected one yr later. She has a heart of gold. Genuine and real. Cares well for others and offers thoughtfulness and sensibility to our endless conversations. Having her in my life makes me a rich woman indeed.
She and her little family are rockin’ the city life quite well. Her little hudson jabbered as we walked the sidewalks like a true local while Gavin was to stunned from ALL of it to utter even a mere peep. I just adored how her son cheesed like he knew how for my pictures!


my cousins.

They were like my sisters growing up since this poor girl had none.

Relationships that go way back only mature as they go forward. I love how we can talk about anything. ANY-thing. N.nee.thing. This is the blood that I’m close to. That God orchestrated in my life. As children we played together and fought each other. We shared and took from each other. We laughed and several of us even cried together. These ladies I know are rooting for each other. We want each other to succeed. To be well and content in this world. To have babies and be happy. To know God more and more and show him to our children.

We might not look like anything great. This defiantly isn’t a glamor shot but it’s us. And, I like us. I can’t write this post without going off about these ladies and our thick bond.


Yup, that’s us. Caring and painfully honest, opinionated and sincere – us. And, knowing our blood-type, it will always be us. We are Mussers. My grandma was coined – the Fusser Musser. I’m not sure if it’s a good thing for me to be admitting that here? It might strip some of that rose tint off your glasses you may see me with-Ha ha! Grandma’s blunt and just says what’s on her mind. You know the type. Ones with no filter. This is her.


If you came to my wedding you might remember her? 🙂

Of course I had to take my boy child to see her. Sit in her presence. And know this is why Momma is the way she is. It’d be telling to say that I have to daily work on implementing my very own filter…

I love here dearly. We grew up as neighbors most of my kid-life and maybe I learned how to take her un-thoughful comments. I know she has not always been appreciated but I love her. She makes me laugh. I know how to take her and sometimes I say things to her just to get a rise out of her! It’s funny to hear what she might say next!
She sat for me and my brothers often, feed us pretzels and had super fun bikes and scooters at her house, a chalkboard that got overused in the kitchen and really neat new born baby dolls too. I remember playing marbles with her and grandpa, God rest his soul, and card games. Especially on those cold winter nights we would run over to grandmas house and hangout with them and warm up our hands and hearts.



Lots of family time for sure!



The one evening at Justin and Rachel’s, Hayley made me a purse. She is the cutest thing! I can’t believe she loves sewing. It was so neat to watch her think and work it out. My mom wants to someday cut blocks and sew a comforter with her. I think that is the perfect thing for a girl to do with her Nanna!

A trip to my aunt and uncle’s pond with my Zimmerman cousins and their kids. Fun for sure!
I swam here often as a teen and in my early 20’s. Gavin got to meet his 2nd cousins on both sides of my family this trip.


Looking at my pictures, I realized I didn’t even take pictures of my dad and Gavin or mom in her different positions around the house or just the blah stuff – to remember everything from our delightful time up there. I’m not the best photographer (why do I feel like I’m always admitting that on here?) and Jason was missing from me. He’s the snap-happy-daddy! He was dully missed and for more reasons than the trigger finger – ha ha!

I enjoyed being at ‘home’ with mom. Cooking, cleaning up, dishes and laundry. Mom and I talked and talked – a LOT. I would say things like, “I should dust for you.” And she would say, “No, don’t worry about it. Just sit here and visit. We don’t get to do this very often. I can dust when I’m better.”
And so, sit and visit is mostly what we did. We talked about almost everything. It was so good soaking up mom time. Talking on the phone is good but not a great as being in the same room. It also helped the time pass by more quickly while all mom could do was sit.

I love how Gavin looks sad he has to say good-bye to Nanna!



 After her eye was healed she soaked up as many chances she could muster with him. It was precious and so much fun to watch my mum dote on him and offer him one snack after the other. She really is a wonderful grandma! I loved watching her interact with my child this time. 🙂

 Flying home without Faye was different experience. We made this work. Gavin was a excellent airplane passenger. You didn’t even know he was on the plane.


Coming home and not seeing these pretties would be so disappointing. I love how Jason often buys carnations for various reasons. I love being thought of. I’m not a huge gifts/flowers person but after almost 4 years with this man, I’d be deeply hurt to come home to a house carnation-less!
Two weeks later we are still enjoying their beauty 🙂


Gavin was in for a surprise when we got home. Jason proudly showed his son what he had made –
We play in it almost every day! (Yes, we. Somebody doesn’t know how to play alone…)



Proverbs twenty-seven: nine:

“A sweet friendship refreshes the soul.”

12 thoughts on “10 Days Due East

  1. I just love this post. Being a transplant myself, I love to hear/read about other people going “home.” There is just nothing like it. What you wrote about talking to mom on the phone or actually being with her is so so true! Living only 6 hours from my family has it’s pros and cons. We go for short weekends and there is just never the time to see cousins, friends, and still spend time with family. I guess I need to start going for longer trips to work some of those things in more often. 🙂


    1. Shannon, you too? Didn’t realize you were a fellow transplant!
      Trips back home are always fun and too fast for sure. This time, without my husband I almost felt more free to hop around a visit more people and stores that I otherwise might not have had ttime for. It also helped to be up there for 10 days! Though I still wasn’t able to connect with EVERYONE. There are still many others that I haven’t seen in literally years!


  2. It sounds like such a wonderful trip!! There is nothing like going home and reconnecting with family and friends! I’m so glad for you.
    And wow, your mom must be a trooper. I cannot imagine being in that position for two weeks!! Wow… I’d be so relieved too, that it healed up well!


    1. That picture of mom almost scares me just looking at it! Being around her and seeing her like that helped be ok around her/it. It was difficult for mom to say the least! She was SSSOOOOO tired of that position and ready to see the world again after 2 weeks!
      And, dito to the wonderful trip and reconnecting part of your comment! It was so special!


  3. Looks like a great trip! I’m sure your mom was very happy to have you there! And Marie! She is one great gal 🙂 And I get to see Violet every now and then.Had no idea she is your cousin 🙂 She’s so nice too!


  4. I don’t know if I’ll remember nearly all the thoughts I had as I read through this, but most of all it left me feeling SO. HAPPY. I’m so glad for you that you got to see your old friends and so many people who are really special and help you remember where you come from/who you are. And that you could be with your mom while she went through this healing thing–it would’ve been so hard to be way down in Texas while you knew she was lying face down. 🙂 And also that you could sit and talk with her. That’s so how my mom and I are, too, when we’re finally together–the work can wait. I’m really glad to hear you had a good time together.


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