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Sunday Afternoon Celebration

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"Just put your arms tightly around her waist and lift her up," called Susan to Victoria. Emily had been climbing on a wall and Susan was instructing Victoria in how to take charge of her littlest cousin. As Victoria carried Emily to a safer part of the back yard, Molson trotted along, curious about this little one who travels on all fours just like him.
An April Sunday afternoon and after church our house is filled with family. We are grateful for an opportunity to spend precious hours together--a gift never taken for granted.
A few balls to kick or throw--all that are needed to keep two grandparents busy running up and down the lawn following Stephen's instructions. "Omie you go in goal," or, if he's in goal, "Go really easy, shoot in the middle."
Our skins soak up the wonderful warmth of the sun and cool to the gentle kiss of the breeze. The fruit trees in the orchard are covered in velvet buds from which are unfurling tiny, perfect, fresh green leaves.
I lie in the slightly damp coolness of the grass and rest for a moment, gazing up at the deep blue sky. "You okay Omie?" calls Joshua, "Get up. "
Susan lifts Emily onto the picnic table and stands her up. If she was on the ground she would sit down and crawl, but somehow being on a table is different and she stands for a few seconds, seeming to enjoy the feeling.
Later, Susan "walks" her down the lawn, in front of her own legs, holding her hands. At fifteen months and tiny of build, Emily has not yet walked by herself.
Then I see Susan take her hand and step away from her, encouraging her to come towards her. Emily stands slightly unsteadily--Susan lets go of her hand and encourages her--we all are encouraging her now...and Emily does it--her feet take two or three wobbly steps. Cheers break out! We are all clapping as we celebrate the wonder of her first steps. Brenda caught it all in a video clip on Susan's camera and as we look at it afterwards we hear all three of us saying, "You can do it Emily!" Emily is smiling--so happy and loving the applause. How exciting to have witnessed this milestone.
Prayer: Dear Lord, I thank you for the precious gift of family--and for our friends and church family too. What a blessing to have each other and to be a support to one another in whatever way we can--each one of us having some gift to contribute that will help fill a need for some other. I am so grateful for this day--and for this afternoon.
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