Lynn's Continuing Journal

Monday, April 9, 2007

Spring is here again, my favorite time of the year! On Easter morning I saw it lying across the valley like a huge, green velvet blanket, warming the forthcoming seeds of color and protecting them from winter’s last grasp of dormant sleep. Before we know it they will burst from the fat buds that hold their excitement to show themselves and the cinerama of the Artist who made them will be for every eye to behold! How can anyone not be in awe of this wonderful time of year when the promise of new life is laid before us in such splendor?

It’s been eight years since the anniversary of Cees’ diagnosis of leukemia on April 9, 1999. And it will be seven years since he’s been absent from us on July 14, 2007! I still can’t believe it’s been that long, let alone that he is even gone at times. Although time has helped to heal the heart, there are some things that one never forgets. I don’t seem to dread the remembrances of those days as much as I used to. They have, instead, become mile markers for me. I guess that some people would want to be able to forget them when at all possible but for me, they mark a time of growth and accomplishment. I believe that if a person reviews the difficult times they have experienced in their past and use those experiences to create a positive outcome in their life journey then the trials they have overcome will have served their purpose. Good things can come from bad things happening, but of course, when you are in it, it doesn’t seem that way. It amazes me that when I look back on the journey I’ve been on over the past seven years that the road has been very winding and at some parts of the road it almost doubles back on itself. There seems to be more straight portions to the road at times now and even some wide spots that one can stop at and take a breather. I’ve even noticed a few vista stops, those places where one can look ahead to where they are going and possibly see where they’re supposed to arrive at their journey’s end.

I made a promise to myself that I would try to honor my time with Cees by attempting to make him proud of me. Cees was always the kind of person that when he put his mind to something he never let up until it was done. Now, there were projects that I sometimes had to light a fire under him to start, but once started, he gave it his all. Then, he’d tire of what he was working on because about half way through he could see it finished in his mind and was already thinking about the next project he wanted to start. He was such a perfectionist want-a-be that it took him three times as long to finish the project because it had to be “Just Right!” In some ways Cees and I were very much alike. We were very much alike in our love of travel, the children, the animals, and our home. But as far as being an early starter that was his passion not mine! Me, well that’s another story.

I am, I guess, what some folks would call a procrastinator. I call it being delegative... Yup, a whole new word. I call it delegating ones time to those things that one feels are important. I have a mantra that says, “You need to be a “D.O.T.W.O.T.” That stands for “Dandelion On The Wind Of Time.” One needs to be a dandelion on the wind of time and let that wind blow you where it wants you to go. Life is way too short to sweat the small stuff and if it’s not your health, then EVERYTHING else is small stuff. What are the important things in my life? They are my family, my home, my new husband, my children, my grandchildren, my dogs and my cats and my friends. My job is right up there with that of course, but most important I guess is learning why I’m here and what my purpose is. I suppose many people have asked that same question, but it’s a question that still lingers for me and one that may never really be answered on this plain.

I may be a bit more philosophical in these, my older years, but helping someone you love cross over to go home makes a huge impression on a person. I know that I will NEVER be the same person I was before in many ways. I don’t look at things the same way anymore. I’ve never been one that holds money in high status because I realized early on that I was never going to be one of those more fortunate ones that had money to burn. I’ve been blessed with just enough and that serves to help keep me humble I suppose. My riches come in the form of my family, my sweet new husband, two loving parents that are still with me AND still married after all these years, two wonderful children, their spouses and my grandchildren. I try to spend my time with the ones I love as much as possible. But as I’ve posted before, life is such that it can suck you right up in endless eddies of whirlpools and spit you out miles down stream leaving you wondering how you got there and what you’ve missed on the journey downstream. Rather than being able to float downstream on the surface and enjoy a leisurely trip, life has a way of creating tremendous currents that can drag you away from those safe coves and calm shores not allowing you to stop and explore the inlets, let alone linger for a visit on the grassy shore.

I know I don’t spend as much time with my children and grandchildren as I would like to, but I have found that their journeys are just as busy and flowing as mine and as most families these days we need to make a concerted effort to find ways to be with each other. We do see each other on birthdays and special occasions but with two young grandchildren age 4 and 2, I don’t want to miss that growing time that I had with the older two that are now 21 and 17. Cees once said and I’ll repeat it here for posterity, “You come into this world all wrinkled and with nothing; you leave this world usually the same. Money or belongings are not what matters. The legacy that you leave behind is your most valuable belonging. I wish for my legacy to be the values I’ve tried to instill in my children and how I’ve treated those whose paths I’ve crossed and whose lives I’ve touched.” Well, he did do that and in such a big way! He passed those values onto our children and they in turn they have passed them on to their children. I am so very proud of them; they have turned out to be outstanding citizens and young adults! They are tender-hearted, respectful of others and compassionate; so much like the qualities that Cees had and wanted for his children.

I still run into people whose lives he had touched, and even now, after all this time they tell me that he was such a re-memberable person! It blesses me to be able to share my life lessons with others experiencing a journey that is similar to mine. It helps me to know that if even one person finds comfort in these words I write then Cees’ memory will live on in them and a grieving spirit may find some comfort.

Cees’ journal is read from all around the world these days; I am pleased that I am able to honor him with this memorial. I’ve made new friends, some of who I’ve never met but have read his journal and keep coming back. We correspond by email on a regular basis. I’ve had the privilege of meeting one wonderful woman who lives in California when I was there in February 2005 for our National AKC Parent Club Specialty. She too had lost her husband from this wicked disease and after emailing for many months we finally had the opportunity to meet face to face. I felt like I had known her all my life and it was so great to finally give her a hug in person! These are the things that I value most and this is what would have made Cees happy. Knowing that his family is continuing on, doing the best they can and being the kind of people that he wished for us to be.

So what’s been happening since I’ve last posted…? “Life markers” I suppose are what you’d call them.

I’m still showing and breeding the American Eskimo Dog. Spirit has moved to Raleigh, NC to live with her daughter Shakti from her first litter and their owner, Deborah Olive. Deborah accepted a pastoral position with a church there and moved with the girls two years ago. As much as I miss her I know that Spirit is happy and secure in her pack of two instead of four and her daughter Shakti is just as happy having another white furry critter like herself as a pack mate. Deborah has said if her job situation changes she will return to the Pacific NW, it’s her favorite place to be. Perhaps we’ll see them back again. I sure hope so!

Mercy, Ruby, Faith & Hope continue their antics and keep me jumpin’. Mercy turned 10 years old this January, Ruby, her daughter will be 9 years old in July. Faith will be 7 years old in May and Hope, Ruby’s daughter will be 2 years old on the 12th of this month. Faith may be having a litter this fall. Ruby will be bred one last time on her upcoming season and then will be retired from our breeding program. Seems just like yesterday we were welcoming her into the world, she was from our very first litter of American Eskimo Dogs. Our wonderful little Hope, Ruby’s daughter, has picked up where her mother left off and continues to show well. She earned her UKC CH title in 3 shows in one weekend at the tender age of 7 months and took her first Champion Class win that weekend in the 2nd show of the day on Sunday. She has added two Champion Class win to give her three out of five that she needs to finish her Grand Champion title. Her latest Champion Class win also gave us a Best Of Breed and a Group #1 Northern class win taking us into Best In Show competition. She also took her first AKC 3-point major win at the age of 9 months and to date has 11 out of 15 points and one major toward her AKC title. To earn your AKC CH title you need 15 total points that includes at least 2, major wins. She’s the only one we have at the moment to show so I don’t really want to finish her too soon. Part of the fun of the sport is showing in the classes. Once they’re finished they are shown as specials and while that’s also fun, it’s not quite the same. I had the opportunity to show Hope and Faith last October 2006 and earned their International Champion title too. It was a pretty interesting venue and fun to have yet another outlet to show in! You can keep up with the girls and what’s happening at AngelHeart~Eskies by following this link to their pages….

We also have two Ragdoll kitties, Maui, who will turn 3 on July 12th and Hana who will be 3 on John’s birthday, November 8th. They get along tremendously well with the dogs and Maui just loves the puppies when they arrive. Hana is a little more standoffish with the dogs and people but we call Maui our “Little Ambassador” as he’s always the first to meet and greet anyone who comes through the door. Maui has his page at and we’re still working on getting Hana’s page going at Drop by and say hello if you get a chance.

Our youngest grandson Jacob will turn 5 in October. He has a little sister, Kaitlyn who will turn three on July 12th. Our oldest granddaughter, Jennifer will be 22 the day after Christmas and her brother Curt turns 18 this August 26th. My stepson, Don has a daughter, Bryn that will turn 5 this September and they had a little boy they named Donovan who turns two on November 6th. It’s really true…life really does go on. But so does the loss of losing those you love… I am saddened to share that I lost Cees’ mom, Zola in 2005. She passed away on October 3, 2005 after a very brief respiratory illness. While I grieve not having her here, I know that she was ready and now is home with the Father, her late husband and her only child…What a reunion that must have been!

I also lost a very dear and close friend the following week on October 11, 2005. Dotti DuLany, my treasured friend who had stood close to my side through my entire journey with Cees’ illness and his subsequent passing… Fifty-four years young and no an indication of anything so serious that would have taken her from me and others that loved her so. Dotti was the friend who took me to Maui after Cees passed away and introduced me to the beauty of the Islands she so loved. She also had Eskies, she called them the “Sugar Pack” and we spent many hours sharing our stories about each others beloved pets. She always loved my Ruby the best, probably because she was Cees’ girl and I had been making plans to get a puppy of Ruby’s to her as a way to say thank you for all she’d been to me throughout the years. It wasn’t meant to be…. She left a huge hole in my heart and the hearts of many in Eskiedom along with her beloved family when she left us... I believe that she and Cees are having a wonderful conversation and catching up on old times while they wait for the rest of us to arrive. God speed Dotti, I loved you so!

In remembering the lives of those that I’ve been blessed to have known and those that still remain around me I also remember the story of the “Tapestry”. It was given to me many years ago and tells about how our lives resemble those many different colored threads that are woven together to create a beautiful portrait of the finished plan. While we, who populate this big blue sphere, look Heavenward to our ultimate home we have the opportunity to look at this glorious tapestry we call “Life” but we can only see it from the underside looking up. We see all of the different colored threads all knotted together with strings hanging down, going every which way, in a jumble of confused intersections. Most certainly our lives can relate to those intersections of major life events that might cause us to turn so abruptly from the path we have chosen either by our own will or by the design of He who directs our steps. We certainly can’t envision the finished plan when viewing this piece of work from our vantage point. However, when we finally depart this earthly plain and go home to be with the Father, He says that we will finally know and be known and we will be able to see the finished plan as He sees it. I can hardly wait to be able to stand by His side and look down on that beautiful tapestry called “Life” and be able to say, “Oh look at that! Now I know why that knot was there…it was created when another colored thread was joined to mine either when a new acquaintance or loved one came into my life or when a life choice was made sending me in another direction”. And by doing so it helped weave this beautiful tapestry that I call the “Final Plan”. So, my friends and loved ones… we are all just colored threads weaving our way through this journey. We are ALL tied together for a reason and a purpose and we ALL affect those we meet and share with. Doesn’t matter if it’s for a brief moment in time or a lifetime we share with a person…we all are threads of the beautiful tapestry of “Life” both here and in the Hereafter…

I have no doubt that one day we will see our loved ones and they will see us again. I have to believe that there is a much better place than this big blue sphere. While it’s our home for now… I know without a shadow of a doubt that Cees’, who dearly loved to build things, is helping to build the extra rooms in the Mansions of Heaven for the rest of us…. I’ll bet he’s a pretty busy guy…!!!!

Until then this world keeps spinning around and the days and nights pass as quickly as the breaths we take to sustain us. And, like those breaths, those days happen without a conscience thought from us to insure they arrive. Life truly does go on and it’s important to remember it’s not how many breaths we take but how we live those days to our ultimate potential and savor the moments that truly take our breath away!


& The Girls,

Mercy * Spirit * Faith * Hope & Ruby

Journal Links

Site Map Meet C.C. Stem Cell Transplant Journal Of Days Obituary
July 31, 2000
August 18, 2000
August 31, 2000
September 9, 2000
September 27, 2000
October 11, 2000
November 14, 2000
January 1, 2001
January 20, 2001
April 1, 2001
May 7, 2001
July 3, 2001
October 29, 2001
October 22, 2002
April 9, 2007 *NEW*

Our Guest Book Is Below ~ Please Visit!

Genesis 9:13 I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth. KJV

Remember friends, Cees and all the others that have gone on before us are still on their first day. We're still working on those thousand.

II Peter 3:8 But beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years and a thousand years as one day.