I have a few legitimate reasons why I haven't blogged about February yet.
But despite all the obvious ones: packing, moving, traveling, getting settled, finding my bearings, etc. I think the real reason is that I've been avoiding the emotional tug-of-war that it was bound to bring up within me. I didn't know how hard it actually would be to write about our last month in Boston. Every time I would start I inevitably would find an excuse to do something else. And even now I'm fighting that tingly feeling that creeps up your throat, into your nose and eventually your eyes.
*I won't cry, I won't cry, I won't cry.....*
Ok let's do this thing.
February was definitely a full, full month. Yes very full.
Full of fun; Full of packing, Full of cleaning, Full of lasts and "get them in while you can's"; Full of goodbye's and parties; and Full of service, friendship, and love.
Sage had her first swimming Birthday Party. This one was for her favorite Beau - Charlie, or as she likes to call him "Charles." She states that she misses him but that she plans on returning to MA when she's older and marrying him. Ah sweet, young love.
I complicated our lives by forgetting to put plugs in her her ears for this party.Completely spaced her ear surgery in December! Big OOPS. It made for added stress this last month as I had to then cram her into a few different ENT appointments to deal with the repercussions of my absentmindedness. I think she wore her earmuffs for the entire month of February just to ease the pressure, feeling and sound in her ears. Great job mom. Great job. Luckily in the end, just days before we left the state, we finally resolved the issues. Phew.
We ate at Boloco for the last time...ok like three different "last" times....
Once with just Daddy, once as a girls night out, and once with our best-buddies.
Cadence has already asked to have her birthday dinner at Boloco. The sad thing is Boloco (which stands for Boston Local) is obviously a Boston only restaurant. We will have to find her a satisfactory replacement in Denver. Or maybe it's just our friends company she's looking to recreate.
We got hit with a blizzard. The perfect way to help me find reasons to want to leave New England.
However, we had so much fun running on the barren, snow-packed, glistening roads, and playing and sledding in the mountains of snow that it didn't quite work!
And of course no more perfect way to end a day of playing in the snow than pretending to be at the beach....
Then in a momentarily laps of reasoning I got stuck in the aftermath of the blizzard. So stuck that the first tow truck couldn't even get to me, the second tow truck couldn't get me out and it took an excavator to pull us both out! Awesome.
Cadence also got to go to her first birthday party with friends from school. She felt so special and had such a great time. What a sweetie.
We filled our cold days with Valentine's day warmth: Cookies, Crafts, Food, and Friends.
One of the things I have discovered and LOVED about New England was the fruit picking farms! We literally had a freezer full of pounds and pounds of blueberries, strawberries, and blackberries. It made me sick to think of throwing them away or even giving them away when we moved. So a dear, sweet friend came over and helped me make jars and jars of jam! I will be eating the fruits of New England for months and months now! A great way to *preserve* some of our memories!
In the middle of the month I was scheduled to run a 20 mile race. As training had taken a side step during the chaos of the month I just about bowed out. But I *thought* it would be a fun trip to Martha's Vineyard with the family. If the weather had cooperated it may have been. The kids did love the ferry ride to the island. So there's that at least.
After the start,
the race just got more and more miserable. I don't think I've ever ran a race with such crappy conditions. It was windy, and for a few miles of the race we were running on sand, snow and ice covered trails. The wind picked up and the rain started. The rain turned to freezing rain, which turned to hail, which turned back to freezing rain which turned to snow - all blasting into my face. The trail was freezing literally right under my feet as I ran on it. There were a few miles between like 10 and 16 that felt great despite the weather, but then it was just torture. I just kept telling myself the faster I ran the sooner this would be over. So glad to see the finish line.
It wasn't hard to run this course faster than the first time I ran it as a training run 2 years ago. But it definitely wasn't a PR for my 20 mile distance races. It was however, fast enough to put me first in my age division. I didn't really feel like I excelled in this race so the "win" was only have heartedly appreciated. I know. I'm ungrateful. But it's just more important to me how I feel I did than how I actually did. If that makes any sense. There will be no opportunity for redemption on this race so I will just have to accept it and move on! :)
Justin was also supposed to have a last New England race and was signed up for a half marathon. But with the stress of getting our life together this month we thought it would be wiser to stay home and pack, organize and figure things out. Though I'm sad he didn't get one last New England race in like I did, I think it was the right decision.
Our last day in our Haitian ward was so emotional. I have loved singing the hymns in french and as we started in on the first song the tears were definitely flowing. Though being in this ward had its challenges it has been such a blessing serving with the great people of Haiti. I will miss their enthusiasm, their love and warmth, their passion for the gospel, their generosity, their kindness and their friendship. And in true Haitian form they canceled the last two hours of church to throw us a farewell party - with a Haitian spread of food, sheet cake and all.
They made speeches, they made us give speeches. Tears were shed, hugs were shared and "A la prochaine" was all I could say to find comfort. After our time with our Haitian friends and all that they brought to our lives, I feel now a bit like the piece of cake I got at the party.
Not meant to be racist, but just a bit apropos. White but with a bit of Haitian left in me. :)
We felt that this was a way to fulfill some of God's will in our lives and we feel He has blessed us for our service and sacrifice. These wonderful people are near and dear to my heart and will be missed.
In the last weeks a friend and I braved Disney on Ice alone with the kids. Though it was semi hectic getting there, it was completely worth it. The girls were enthralled!! And yes I even let them dress up like princesses! What has this world come to!?
Nouvelle couldn't look away! The left over tears in her eyes are from the said hectic above. She soon recovered and was thoroughly entertain the entire show.
We had some magnificent crepes with some magnificent people. I know Olivia from my mission in Belgium. We didn't see her nearly enough while we lived in Boston, and it is sad that now the option to will be no longer. Olivia holds a special place in my heart. Beh oui, uh? :)
Moving sure makes you realize that you need to make the most of your opportunities and the people you care about while you have the chance. Don't take things, and even more so, people for granted. Cherish them while you have the chance.
We had one last go at sledding
How can you beat this scenery? Ah New England. You beguiling mistress.
We had one last indulgence with the best Boston Creme ANYWHERE. For this Boston Creme snob, trust me. Dunkin Donuts takes the cake....or rather donut, if you will.
And then we spent the last day of the month commencing the packing extravaganza with our favorite Missionaries ever - the "Hatianaries"
For being the shortest month of the year it sure was crammed packed!
As I said, so so full. My heart as we hit March was full as well. But I'll get to that....