Well, it’s been awhile here.  Not quite sure why I haven’t written in several weeks.  Life has been busy, that is for sure.  School ended, and that last week was full of classroom parties, and two graduations (Luke from kindergarten; and Bailey from 5th grade and elementary school – wow).  Bailey did a phenomenal job with her speech to the 5th grade class and parents.  She was school president this year, and we couldn’t have been prouder of her.  She also received the Presidential Award (one of 3 in the school to get it) – which goes to fifth graders who have made all As in 4th and 5th grade, and 90% or higher on EOGs each year.

Luke’s class had kindergarten graduation too – Luke received the award for Best Reader (Christopher got this in kindergarten too).  If there was an award for Most Energetic he would have won that hands down.

We were in Boston for a lot of last week visiting cousins and hanging out in that great city.  I hope to post some pictures soon of our adventures.  Aunt Dana went with us which was a huge help – we couldn’t have done it without her.  (Especially getting 3 kids through airport security)  Of course, now that I think about it, she was the only one to get her bag searched…

So the summer has begun.  We have camps to do and trips to take.  The kids are enjoying their time out of the school schedule, hanging out with friends and going to the pool.  My work with church and writing continues.  I should have more news about the book within the next few weeks, including a release date, and a website launch.  If you don’t know the title yet, it’s called Spirit Fighter, and is being published by Thomas Nelson.  A middle-grade adventure about a brother and sister who discover they are part angel.

We miss Susan.  That goes without saying, of course.  I can’t believe it’s been six months now.  I can say that we’re in a different place in some ways than we were 3-4 months ago.  We’re grateful she is no longer in pain and isn’t suffering any longer.  But our pain, the pain of not having this beautiful woman, wife, mother, daughter, sister, and friend, in our lives, continues.  Many, many things remind me of her, from songs, to things the kids do (like Bailey pushing her hair back over her right ear in a certain way), to restaurants, to places we visit, TV shows, photos, books, a passage of Scripture…she’s everywhere, but not here.

(If that sounds like it doesn’t make sense, that’s exactly how I feel.)

So, we continue to plug away.  I spent some time this morning praying and reading some of the Psalms…and felt closer to God, and somehow closer to her too.

The good news is that we are moving forward (not in the sense of away from her, but we’re not just stuck), the kids and I are having fun and trying to do as good a job with living as we can.  Summer is full of not only strong memories of Susan, but great opportunities for fun and being together as a family.



4 Responses to “Summertime”

  1. Charlotte Lennartz Says:

    Good to hear all is well – excited about the book! Take care and keep the summer moving! The kids are blessed to have a great dad!

  2. Michelle Says:

    I think you are doing and feeling best you possibly can at this point. Jerel, I continue to lift your entire family up in prayer. I’m glad to hear you tell us that you have moved forward from where you were a few months ago. I still cannot believe Susan is not physically with us and it really doesn’t get any easier as days go by to try and process that fact. I’m excited about your book release. Keep the summer moving!

  3. Ali Hogston Says:

    Prayers remain with you all. Susan would want you to enjoy life. Congrats to the kids on their accomplishments. She will always be in your hearts and a part of your lives.

  4. Edie Stanfield Says:

    Jerel — I can just “see” Susan pushing her hair back over her right ear! I’m SO thankful your children have Susan as a model of a Christian wife and mom and I’m sure there are many important life lessons embedded in Bailey, Christopher and Luke that we will notice over the coming years. You are a dear and faithful parent to them and I continue to pray for your knowledge and welfare as you lead them. Edie

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