My heart is full and my home is a bit fuller too. Our twelve year old grand girl has come to live with us for middle school. We are enrolling her in an online public school to give us flexibility with her schedule and so we can have more hands-on with her learning. She is the one who asked to come live with us and her parents supported her decision. She and I have been busy de~Natalie~ing her room and Lissa~izing it.
Ron and I have a little plaque on our mantel that says 'We love our birdhouse full of birds.' That is how we feel about having Lis here. As wonderful as an empty nest is it is fabulous to have a young one here to love and encourage. The truth is Lissa brings a new life to our home. Her curious enthusiasm to learn and be involved encourages us to learn and be involved.
We all sat down and came up with the dos and don'ts list. She has spent summers with us, so she knows how we live and what we value. There may be bumps in the future but as long as we all let each other know what drives us nuts and what makes us smile, we will be okay.
Wednesday is Thrive aka youth group so Wednesday night will now be date night for Noni and Papa. Lis already got her first mail at our house from her loving cousin, McKayla. It not only made Lis smile but she wrote back immediately. I love that my grands are sending each other snail mail. When they were younger I tried to write a couple times a month to each of them. This is another thing that makes me smile.
Grandparents raising grandkids is happening more and more. It used to be that we all lived close enough so the grandparents as well as aunts and uncles all raised kids as a community~family. The hardest part of raising grandkids is that something is broken in our kids or we wouldn't be. As you know, we lost Lissa's dad to suicide almost seven years ago. We love that this opportunity to love on his daughter is here. Ryan would be so thrilled with the young lady that Lis is becoming. She has his love for others and adventurous heart. When I look into her brown eyes I see her dad's heart. She is her own person but got a good bit of the best of both her parents. Having her here gives us the chance to steer her away from the pitfalls her parents made and toward the opportunities that will give her the biggest world possible. Drugs and alcohol and the shame of them took her dad. Our hope is to provide Lis with successes that keep her from repeating his missteps.
She asked for a passport for Christmas so she could see the world. Guess Ron and I need to get out the map and dust off our own passports. World here we come with Lissa in the seat next to us.