Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The Apathy Continues

I know I bored you all yesterday with a long ranting post, so I will attempt to avoid a repeat.

Yesterday I sent home 120 letters to the 4th grade parents asking, begging, pleading, ?demanding? their help with this huge task at hand. So, I marched myself and three kiddos down to the school bright and early this morning to collect a huge stack of response letters FOUR response letters. And then as if they needed to defend their parents, the excuses started flying from the kids' mouths. "My mom/dad has to work that night." DONATE YOUR MONEY THEN! "My mom/dad didn't get home till too late to get the letter last night." AND WHAT ABOUT THIS MORNING? "My mom/dad don't care if I go to Catalina or not." GREAT ATTITUDE! "My mom/dad said they are just going to write a check for my portion." THEN GET CRACKIN' ON THAT!

If we do not have $17,000 by June 1st at 4:00 p.m. then all this work will have been for nothing and the trip will be cancelled!! Cancelled for EVERYONE, including those who have earned their way through blood, sweat, and tears (or wait, maybe I am the only one who has cried over this). We don't have time for apathetic, 'maybe later' parents.

The kids seem to get the urgency. I feel like I am preaching to the choir when I go into these classes EVERY morning, begging for their help. But they can't force their parents to do something they aren't willing to do for themselves. Please, never let me become one of those parents who is apathetic toward my children's education.

On a more positive note, on our first day of Big Stick popsicle sales we sold FIFTY-THREE!! And that happened without a shred of advertisement. Just imagine how many we can sell now that the word is out. So if you want to find me between the hour of 2-3 for the next 5 weeks, Monday - Friday, I will be located right next to the cafeteria doors, with multiple bags of popsicles and hopefully a handful of money.

And now to go mentally prepare myself for my root canal this afternoon - UGH!!

Monday, April 27, 2009

When Will the Chaos End?

Well, I can answer my own question: June 1st at 4:00 p.m. That is the deadline for the 4th grade fundraising, the time where we need to show that we have raised over $17,000!!! So far we have raised almost $6,000, so we have a major uphill battle in the next 4 weeks.

**Warning: long ranting post with no pictures. My poor camera has felt neglected in the past 4 weeks. No picture of dentist appointments, swim evaluations, get togethers with friends, NOTHING. I am in a picture taking funk and can't seem to dig myself out.**

Now back to our regular scheduled rant:

They are trying to raise the money for the students to go to science camp in Sept. of their 5th grade year. Since they don't have any time to raise the money before the trip in 5th grade, that leaves the fundraising for 4th grade. Well, we had an informational meeting in Sept. to let the parents know that this year 100% would have to be paid for by the students through fundraising or personal checks in order for them to go since the district funds were drastically cut. That meeting was attended by maybe 20 parents (out of 120). Then , months and months went by with no communication from the school. A fundrasier would come home ever once and a while and Andrew eagerly participated (Thank you Nana for eagerly buying from each catalog). Each child has to either pay or fundraise the cost, which is $250/child!

Andrew so far has fundraised over $350, so he is paid for and then some. If each person would participate then there is no reason why it wouldn't be possible. And it is an all or nothing event, so if everyone else doesn't step up then Andrew won't be going either. But, instead, we have apathetic parents who have come to expect everything to be paid for like it has been in the past. We also have a total lack of communication on the part of the school administration with the 4th grade parents. We went from that meeting in Sept. till our next meeting in March with nothing being communicated in between. Now it is do or die time and placed squarely on our shoulders even though they dropped the ball during the school year.

So now we are left scrambling to figure out how to raise that kind of money in less then 8 weeks, now down to 5 weeks. And here is where the chaos began. I mentioned the apathetic parents already and it has only gotten worse. We had 15 parents show up to the March meeting (mostly repeats from the first). When we send home letters to get volunteers for a fundraiser we get only a few sheets back. This has left the fundraising up to, you guessed it, ME!! And, I am overwhelmed! Some parents have some ideas but aren't willing to make them happen. They would rather make a phone call to the fundraising coordinator (not sure how I earned that title) and then sit back and watch me take care of it all. How about a car wash, a rummage sale, a jog-a-thon, a movie night, a carnival, t-shirts, or selling snacks after school? Oh, and good luck doing it by yourself.

For the past 4 weeks, in the midst of mourning and preparing for my brother's memorial, I was overwhelmed with coordinating multiple events with partically zero help (my hubby has really been there for me when he can be, but not much more from anyone else). We have another event this coming Thurs. and once again it has been thrown on my plate to advertise it, get everything together, and then run the event. People don't understand that their 'simple' idea takes a lot of behind the scenes effort. This past weekend alone I spent over 20 hours working on flyers and tickets and logistics. Then this morning I was at the school at 7:15 making 650 copies and placing them all the teachers' boxes, having a meeting with the principal, the secretary, custodian, and 4th grade teachers all before 8:00. And then it was off to the store to buy ice, water, juice, and popsicles for the after school sale. Which means I am at the school 30 minutes each day after school to nickle and dime ourselves to $17,000.

And if I haven't said it before, I AM TIRED!!! I just want to crawl into my bed, pull up the covers and not come out for days. I know that is part of the mourning process. I know that I am overwhelmed. But most of all, I AM TIRED!!!

Here's to hoping that Thursday night is a success. We are having some local race car drivers bring their cars to the school for the kids to see up close and get pictures with. We will be selling hot dogs, nachos, drinks and whatever else I can pull together between now and Thurs. At what point do I walk away and throw my hands up? I can't keep doing this on my own! I can't keep putting my personal life on hold to raise money for everyone elses kids to go to camp! I can't ignore the mounding dishes and laundry much longer! And, most importantly, I can't keep telling my kids to leave me alone since I am busy working on school stuff!!! I am a stay at home mom so I can be there for them, not so I can be the fundraising coordinator for the school.

Guess I am in super need of a pep-talk and an attitude adjustment. Or, a huge donation of $11,000!! I didn't even make it through typing this post without having to stop and field a phone call about how much money we made at last night's pizza fundraiser. Everyone wants to know how much but no one wants to ask, 'how can I help?'

(Oh, I failed to mention that even after we get to $17,000 by June, we will still have to fundraise another $8,000 next year to cover the remaining cost, which totals about $25,000!)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

The Good Old Days of Matching Outfits

I was just reading one of the blogs that I follow, and Lindsay was blogging about her recent sewing adventures. The adorable outfits she had made for her girls princesses reminded me of the times when my mom would make us all matching dresses. I don't know if my mom loved to sew or if she just did it out of necessity when she and my dad were trying to raise 5 kids on a single income and sending us to private school. I remember the late nights, standing on top of the kitchen chairs so my mom could take our measurements or cut the pattern down to fit our size. At the time it often felt like torture, but now I look back on those pictures and love all the memories associated with those matching dresses.

Here are a few examples of those matching dresses, some sewn by my mom and others were purchased. (I am on the far right)Gotta love this one. These dresses and pulled up socks scream 80s!! (I am second from the left)Once again matching outfits with my brother being the accent color. (I am top left)And lastly, our most memorable matching outfits (at least in my mind): baby blue strawberry shortcake dresses. I love David and Faith's (baby of the family) expressions in this picture. David is saying, "Too much estrogen around here!!" and Faith seems to be saying, "What? Another picture in matching outfits!" (I am in the center back)

Now that you have had your blast to the past with these wonderful homemade creations, go on over to Lindsay's blog and check out the cute outfits she has made for her princesses.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Cousin Pictures from JcPenney

If you would like to check out some REALLY cute pictures of all the Wendeln cousins, then follow this link and enter the Customer Name: CHARITY CARTER. You gotta check them out, they are so adorable. I really wish that our times together were not so short and few and far between.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Lots of Cousin Time

Although this past weekend was a very bitter sweet occasion, we all enjoyed being able to see Kailee and Diddle (his given name is David, but we called him little D, which turned into Diddle over time, and he doesn't respond to being called David now). The last time we saw them was almost 3 years ago when Diddle was only 9 months old. Boy have they changed.
Diddle is all boy and loves to ride off all that energy. It doesn't matter if the bike is pink and purple, as long as it goes is all that matters.Kailee is also a go getter and enjoyed playing with all her girl cousins, which were more then happy to lavish her with lots of love and play time. Alexis and her were like two little peas in a pod and you would think they had played together often in the past the way they played so nicely together.
I know this isn't the best quality of pictures. You try getting a wiggly 13 month old to sit still in a strange environment and a 3 year old who is on the go to stop and pose for a picture. But, besides the poor quality of the picture I had to show you the beautiful baby blues on both the boys. Could just gobble them up.
Shayna (6), Alexis (4) and Kailee (5)
On Friday afternoon, my mom, sisters, and I went over to the church to get a few things done. While we were gone, Uncle Rob and Uncle George bravely agreed to watch all the kiddos. That's 5 boys and 4 girls. Rob even got Aiden to fall asleep in his arms, which is a rare occurence, but even more shocking since there were so many kids running around. Way to go guys!! and thanks!! Dale came to their rescue to help when he showed up with Andrew a little while later.
Sleeping was at a premium this weekend. Aiden does not like hotels and refused to sleep very well. He eliminated his naps for the most part and would catch just enough sleep time to recharge his batteries and then he was on the go again. He finally crashed in Daddy's arms at the reception on the day of the memorial. Of course it was a short nap since everyone wanted to meet him and the hall was pretty loud.

What a great bunch of boys. They all shaved their heads and wore their plaid shirts in honor of their Uncle D. Jacob (10), Andrew (9) George Jr. (5), and Clint (3). After the service we went back to my Mom's place to drop off the flowers and left over food and had a little more time with the kids before they had to go back to NC early the next morning. Ignore my dorky smile, I was tickling and laughing to get Diddle to smile and then of course everyone else looks great. Boy do we miss those kiddos already and pray that they will adjust to their new normal without their Daddy.

Thank you again to everyone for their prayers, support, and words of encouragment during this time. They are all greatly appreciated.

A Life Celebrated

This past Saturday was my brother's memorial in Poway, CA. I went down on Friday to help get last minute things done, like ordering flowers and buying a guest book and decorating the church. This also gave the kids extra time to play with their cousins. Later that night we all made the trek to the local JcPenney photo studio to get pictures taken. Suprisingly it went smoother then I had imagined and we ended up with some really cute pictures. I will post those when we get them back.

Saturday is when the reality of the weekend hit. We headed to the church around 10:15 to get the video camera set up and take the time to capture a few pictures before everyone got there. My sisters and mom set up a beautiful memory table for people to view on their way in. This table included his stuffed football that he got on the day he was born, along with my dad's football from his childhood, that was passed down to my brother when my dad passed away in 2002. We also displayed his baby book, one of his baby outfits, and lots of other milestone pictures. Everyone seemed to enjoy walking down memory lane as they entered the church. Andrew and his cousin Jacob were entrusted with the job of handing out bulletins and having guests sign the book. They felt so big and responsible by being given this job. They did a wonderful job and would have made their Uncle D proud.
At the front of the church we had a few flower arrangements, a large picture of my brother (taken on his wedding day in 2003) and then his urn, which was engraved with his dates and also had a beautiful picture of him take a few years back.
When we went to pick out flowers for my brother the day before we only had one true requirement: the arrangement must include the stargazer flowers. Those are the white flowers with pink in the middle. My dad ALWAYS got these flowers for my mom and my brother did the same for his wife. Dale has even gotten in on the tradition and usually makes sure there is a stargazer or two in the bouqets he gets me. We wanted something simple but elegant and I think we accomplished that with this beautiful arrangment that stated "Son, Brother, and Uncle" on the ribbon.
The service itself was very touching. The video montage went off without a hitch and seemed to be enjoyed by everyone. If you would like to check it out for yourself just click on the link or picture below to be taken to it.
My mom, sisters, and I were all able to get up and speak; which we were not sure we were going to be able to do if emotions took over. There were also a few friends that came up and spoke about how David had impacted their lives. He touch many people during his short time here on earth.
Following the service we had a luncheon in the reception hall where we got to talk to all of those that had come to celebrate David's life. It was a major blast from the past having all of those people in the same room, including my Pre-K teacher and many others from my years past. The consensus was one of disbelief and shock at a life so short.
But, we also know that we don't have to say goodbye, but instead see ya later since we know we will see him again in heaven. I don't understand the why's of it all but know that God's perfect will is done in each of our lives. The most important lesson learned is to cherish every moment because we never know when it will be our last. David was great at making phone calls, not just on birthdays and anniversaries or major holidays, but whenever he wanted to say 'I love you.' His family meant so much to him and he made sure he took every opportunity to tell us how much he loves us. I hope that you are able to do the same with your family before their time comes.

Skating Night - Not So Fun For All

Our family had the opportunity to go to the skating rink with the childrens' group from our church last Tues. Andrew had gone last year and loved every minute of it. Alexis, on the other hand, was too young to go and very upset when she learned that he had gone without her. So, for the past year all we have heard about is how she will be old enough to go and can't wait since it will be SOOO much fun.

Once we got there and put her skates on, her enthusiasm quickly disappeared. She had a death grip on Dale and a terrified look on her face.They managed to make it ONCE around the rink, with Dale mainly dragging her along and holding her up the entire time.This was the face I was given when they finally made it back around to me. "Please don't make me go again." Being the compassionate mom we all know that I am, I had to take a picture of this face before I could console her.She did get off the rink and instead enjoyed 'skating' on the carpet outside of the rink. Then someone informed me that we could tighten her skates to make it easier on her. That did the trick and she was comfortable going back out for another go around or two. Not so sure she will put this on her calendar of things to do annually.

Andrew was a totally different story. He LOVES skating and could never get enough of it. He was chasing friends around the rink and even got daddy to get in on a few races.He said his head felt funny when he would go fast since he no longer had any hair. I am glad he had such a fun time.

Andrew had invited a few buddies from school, Hunter and Zach, who were less then enthusiastic about skating, and preferred to hang out more with Alexis on the carpet. By the end of the night though, they were both able to go around the rink slowly without having to hold onto the side.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Kids Dealing with Grief and Teeth.

Grief is an interesting event when it comes to kids. They can't grasp what is going on (how could they? I don't even get it), but they know that things are not as they once were. Alexis came up to me, started rubbing my back, and asked me if I was crying because I missed my brother. When I replied that I was really sad but that I knew he was in heaven with Jesus, she replied with, "Well, since Jesus is in my heart and was in his heart, maybe Jesus could help David pop his head out of my heart so we can say hi." Where do these things come from?

She is also super excited about her upcoming 'vacation.' Going to a memorial (or anniversary as she keeps calling it) is not exactly a vacation to me, but that is how she sees it since she will be together with all her cousins. She is jazzed about staying in a hotel for two full sleeps and can't wait to "go to the nursery with my cousins while the adults go and cry for David."

Oh, to be innocent like a child and not have all this sadness.

Aiden news: the other day someone asked me how many teeth he had now. As I was sayin 5 and feeling around in his mouth I found one more, making that 6. So the following day I was telling someone the 5 turned into 6 story as I was feeling around once againa and found tooth number 7!!! No wonder we have had sleepless nights, snotty nose, and overall crankiness. Interestingly, they are all on his right side, no teeth on his cleft side. He has his two top teeth (though moved over one postion in his mouth), one in the far back on the top, the two front bottom teeth, one right next to the front ones on the right and then a molar in the back. Lots of action on that right hand side. Will he eventually get teeth on the left side? I do hope so. He seems pretty lopsided for now.

Today is packing day and then tomorrow we will head down early in the morning to San Diego to get some last minute details worked out. We also have a 7:00 photo shoot. At first we were going to cancel taking pictures but then quickly realized that it was more important now then ever to get it done and that David would have wanted it to still be done. Then Saturday will be the memorial at 11, with lunch to follow with all his friends and family. That evening I intend to spend as much time as possible with Kaliee and Diddle before they have to head back to NC. Then the kids and I will spend one more night in the hotel while Dale comes back home to work early the next day. Sunday will just be spent with family and then heading home early afternoon to get ready for the next school week.

I am hoping to get back to 'normal' next week and post some cute pictures of the kiddos. My camera hasn't had much action these past two weeks and probably feels neglected. Andrew's camera on the other hand has been super busy, as you can see from the dance fever videos he took. He brought me his camera the other night and I expected to see another dance video. Instead I got a private tour of his room. I had told him to clean his room, and then when he came to tell me it was time for my inspection, I had told him I was too tired to inspect and that I would just trust him that it was done right. A few minutes later I have a camera in my face with a short video tour, with narration and all, of his clean room. My silly kid keeps me laughing in the midst of it all.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

So much to update, not enough time and energy

I have been wanting to do an update post but just haven't had the energy. So, I am just going to bite the bullet so to speak and get it out there. Not as eloquent and lacking pictures, but at least it is out there. Here goes....

On the topic of Andrew's new hair style. I was a little worried about how kids were going to react at school and wanted to make sure that he had rehearsed what he was going to say when kids were shocked with his new hairstyle. He knew what to say and I wasn't worried about him at all when I sent him off for school on Tues. morning. When I picked him up in the afternoon, I immediately asked how the day had gone in regards to his hair. He replied that people had asked him about it and he said, "I cut my hair in honor of my Uncle D who just passed away a week ago." When I asked if he had been teased he said no but then stated, "plus mom, it all builds character, so who cares." Why do I worry about this little guy? He has it all figured out and is just such a strong kid. I am really blessed.

Alexis quick update: We had Kindergarten registration yesterday and she was excited. I think she thought that meant she got to move on to Kindergarten TODAY. Boy was she disappointed when she realized she was still a preschooler today. I have tried to explain to her that she will start in Aug., right before her birthday. I have a feeling she is going to ask me EVERY day between now and then. She also went skating last night with the entire family and the church kids group last night. She was super excited to go skating and couldn't stop talking about it all day long. Once we got there and her skates were on, she got terrified. Dale had skates on and was going to take her around the rink. 10 mins later they had made one full loop and she was D-O-N-E!!! She escaped the rink and refused to go back. She instead walked around on the carpet outside of the rink. Then, someone finally told me about the little trick of getting her skates tightened. That was the magic touch. She was off and running skating and threw a fit when we were told our time was up and we had to leave. That was not the first fit of the night and proved to not be the last one either. She wanted to buy something from the little store, and when told no she turned to me and said in a calm voice, "well if you don't buy me something then I am just going to throw a big fit." And she did, and I did NOT buy her something. Why did she think that would work this time? It never has before. Boy do we have a challenge on our hands here. She was one big mess the whole way home and had another melt down walking up to the house because her jacket was too heavy. Can someone say TIRED?!?

And last but not least... Aiden: He has the biggest news to share. He is now a proficient WALKER! My baby is now a toddling little boy. He rarely crawls and can get everywhere in no time on his two feet. It is the cutest thing and when I get the time and energy I will have to post a cute video of him doing so. People left and right have been telling me how grown up he looks now and how he has lost his little boy look. I know that he has but I am choosing to not accept it, so it is hard to hear it over and over.

Well, there's lots more but I think that is enough for today. We are heading down to San Diego on Friday morning for my brother's memorial service on Saturday. I have been so busy I haven't even had the time to truly grasp all that is going on. I am just waiting for it to hit, and hit me hard. It is going to be hard to see his kiddos, who flew in yesterday. Thank you to everyone who has held my family up in prayer. Those prayers are very much appreciated and needed. And next time, I promise less words and more pictures. :)

Monday, April 13, 2009

Sporting a New Do!

A week ago, my sister and I were talking about my brother's signature hair style: TOTALLY shaved off. He could have easily had a thick head of hair but since he was little he has always had it shaved really short and then in adulthood he started shaving it razor short. So came the plan to shave the kids heads for his memorial service only if they wanted to. I am in love with Andrew's long, THICK, hair; but it is just hair and it will grow back. He came to the decision on his own today and decided that tonight would be the night for a new look. Here is his before picture, taken by him of course at close range.

During my scanning party of all my brothers pics, I am came across this picture. Having fun with a temporary mohawk.
This was our pathetic attempt at a last minute mowhawk.And then here is the classic Uncle D' look, totally shaved. This was taken the last time Andrew saw his Uncle D' in 2006.
And now Andrew's new look.... TOTALLY shaved!!

Gonna take me a while to get used to the new look. But, hair grows back and he really wanted to honor his Uncle D' by shaving it all off.


I returned home from dropping off Alexis at school to be shown the following clips that Andrew had recorded while I was gone. I was a little afraid of what I would find but was laughing hysterically by the time we finished watching the last clip. Click on the link below and enjoy a good laugh for yourself.

View this montage created at One True Media

I am working on a full blog post, lots to update, just not enough energy to do it all. Hope everyone has a blessed week.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Thank you for the prayers, no news yet

I just wanted to post a quick note to tell everyone thank you for the prayers and words of encouragement over the past few days. We do not know anymore details. They are doing the autopsy today so we should know more tomorrow. I am going down to San Diego today to be with my mom and my sisters so we can discuss plans for the memorial service, as well as if and when one of us should go back to NC to claim my brother's things and tie up any loose ends there. I am holding up pretty good and just seem to be in go mode so I know it all hasn't sunk in yet. I have a lot going on at the school this week with Science Camp fundraisers and Literacy night on Thurs., so please pray that I will have the time and the strength to complete everything that needs to be done (or that I will learn to delegate, that might be a good lesson). Sleep seems to be at a premium these past few days since that is when reality usually sinks in the most, late at night and in the early early mornings when the house is quiet and I have too much time to think. I appreciate all the prayers of support and will check back in when I can.

I wanted to also share the following devotional that my sister got in her inbox yesterday and she forwarded it to all of us sisters. It was very fitting for what we are going through and I thought I would share it with anyone here who might need it.

"…we are God's workmanship created in Christ Jesus…" Ephesians 2:10 (NIV)My amazing husband can do anything. He's a fix-it man. There isn't anything he can't repair or create. He rebuilds damaged computers for family and friends, repairs weed eaters and garage door openers for neighbors, and rescues broken furniture from trash heaps. Recently he brought a chair home from a dinner party. It wasn't a gift and we didn't steal it. Someone sat in it and broke it!

After two days of taking the chair apart - performing what looked like orthopedic surgery to me, you know when pins and screws are inserted to keep bones and joints from further damage – followed by a little gluing, sanding, and staining, the chair looked brand new."Wow!" I said, impressed."Sit in it and rock back," he encouraged."Rock back? I don't think so! What if I break it?""Oh, believe me. You won't.""How do you know?" I asked, not convinced."I know how I designed it. I know the pressure points and how much stress it can take" he responded with a smile of confidence. "Go on. Sit in it and rock back."I sat down and rocked back.The chair was solid. I don't care who sits in it, or how they land in it now, it will not break.

I think about the times we don't believe we can handle any more stress. The pressure seems overwhelming and we cry, "Time out! I can't take any more!"God responds, "Trust me. You will not be destroyed. I know your pressure points. I know how much stress you can take. I know how I designed you. "I cannot describe the peace I felt when I related the work of my husband's hands to the work of God's hand.

Of course He knows how much I can take. After all He is my Creator, the one who bent down by the river and fashioned me with His hands. He's the one who knit me together in the depths of my mother's womb, the one who is called the Potter. He knows the exact temperature needed in the kiln to create the perfect clay vessel. He knows how hot the fire must be to separate the dross from the silver and gold. He knows how much pressure a diamond or emerald must withstand in order for it to come forth solid and brilliant. He knows how long the irritant must sit in an oyster before it becomes a pearl. My Father knows exactly how much I can take. He knows because He designed me. With that realization I am able to trust Him and smile at the future, no matter how hard life is today. Lord Jesus, You are the Carpenter. You know exactly how to build a piece that will withstand pressure and stress, a work of art that will not easily crumble. You created me the same way. Rather than tremble in the face of despair, help me trust in Your design. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Prayers Needed

I got one of the worst phone calls this morning. The ones where someone asks you if you are sitting down before they continue the conversation. I actually yelled at my sister (sorry Faith) to just tell me because I didn't have time to sit down. Needless to say, after she told me I immediately found the time to find a chair before I found the ground. The kind of phone call where every scenario starts running through your mind that you can barely concentrate on the words coming out of their mouths. That kind of phone call.

I found out this morning that my brother, who is only 27, was found dead in his house this morning. We do not know all the details yet, but my BIL had gone over there to spend some time with him and found him laying on the ground. He tried to wake him up, but quickly realized that he had been gone for a while. They are speculating that he either had a heart attack or that the infection he had been trying to fight had gone into his blood stream and caused problems with his heart.

He had been to the doctor's office on Friday with numbness and pain down his left arm, as well as facial numbness and slurred speech. They dismissed him and told him to take some pain meds and call them in the morning. When he called to tell them it was worse, they told him to make an appointment for Monday. Well, he didn't make it till Monday.

There are so many questions and not enough answers today. Does my mom fly back to North Carolina or just deal with things from here? Will my SIL, who was seperated from my brother, be cooperative and respectful of my brother's wishes to be brought back to CA? Should I take the kids out of school and go down to San Diego to spend time with my mom even though there is nothing for me to do? Or should I keep their lives as normal as possible and just stay here until I am needed to do something? What do I do with all this sadness and anger?

I have not seen my brother for almost 3 years and was looking forward to him coming to CA in just TEN DAYS!!!! 10 days!! That was how close I was to seeing my brother, niece and nephew and now I will never see my brother again. Why did he have to go at such a young age? My dad passed away at a young age of 50 and now my only brother at an even younger age of 27. He has left behind a 5 and 3 year old. How do you tell a 5 & 3 year old that their daddy is gone? He was the best daddy and everything he did was for those kids. I am just waiting for someone to call me and tell me this is all a big joke, though I know it is not, I just wish I didn't have to face the fact that he is gone forever. I am sad. I am angry. I am numb.

I love him very much!!!!