Thursday, April 24, 2014

Catching up part 2

Easter weekend was spent at Davey with the Kelly clan. Here's a peek into all that transpired...

wind...lots of Nebraska wind! 

more wind

Oh look! more.wind. 

our favorite Easter treat...bird nests! 

Funny story: Jeff, John, Corynn, Evie, Emma and I went on a truck ride to find where the wood chucks are living in the pasture. Jeff, John, Emma and I were in the cab of the truck. Corynn and Evie were in the back. Jeff was sure we could go venture over the dam. "Luke said we could drive through it." he exclaimed. Referring to huge 80 year old cottonwood that had fallen over the dam. Luke sawed it in half last fall- and Jeff was certain we could drive through the middle. A short cut.  
Checking to make sure we don't slide off the dam into the ravine. 

After getting to the tree and trying to squeeze the truck was a no go. We didn't fit. We decided Luke must of have meant it was passable, but in the bobcat not the truck. :(
It was a treacherous fifteen minute adventure of trying to back up and not fall off into oblivion. 

Did I mention Emma was in there with us!? And I'm claustrophobic. Fun times. 

Good thing Jeff was driving. 

Silly string fight Easter morning. Some were still in their pjs. 

It was a fun weekend! 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Catching up part 1

Things have started to slow down after a life changing few months. Hoping to really get back into my blogging/journaling. It's a little bit of 'me' time that I enjoy and helps center me. 

Much has happened in the Kelly household. First off, our little munchkin (who is actually not so little...she's almost as tall as me!) turned 11! Ms. Corynn Tillie is a tween and will be entering middle school in the fall! So hard to believe! 

For her birthday, we went bowling with family. Just a small little outing to celebrate and be together. Corynn is quite the bowler! Must take after her grandpa Kelly! :)

Ed and cousin Anna were able to join us as well! It was a fun time! 

Bad was a bowling alley- BUT grandpa bowled 2 strikes in a row and was one pin short of a TURKEY! He bowled when he was younger and worked as a pin setter.  

Good form, Corynn! 

 Evie wasn't feeling well and basically slept the whole time. Poor thing! 


The next week we had a family dinner with all of the Kellys to celebrate Nancy. It was a nice get together and wonderful to have Jeff surrounded by his family at this time. I think the cousins liked it too!

We gifted all of the cousins (Nancy's grandchildren) a piece of a puzzle pendant. So that they could remember Grandma Kelly and know that they are all in this together. I love how they turned out! 

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Nancy's Eulogy

Nancy's service was this past weekend at Stuhr Museum in Grand Island. A perfect setting and one Nancy would have loved! It was a beautiful day and a lovely service.

Both my sister in law, Amy and I spoke. My nephew Sam read a poem and a family friend sang a truly beautiful rendition of Amazing Grace.

Here's what I said:

Our family is blessed with so many memories of Nancy. Memories like:

How she read Donkey Donkey  to the twins so many times that they had it
memorized by the time they were three.

Picnics and tea parties. Sleep overs and shopping trips.

Taking walks and picking flowers.

Using every ounce of her home ec teaching to help guide me on how to keep
house and cook.

Walking down to the pasture with the twins to watch and name the cows at

Surprising everyone (Jeff included) by winning a puppy at a charity auction. 

Listening to family stories for the fiftieth time and watching Nancy smile
as she reminisced.

Memories of each and every holiday being special and perfect.

She was a stellar cook and lovely hostess.

She welcomed the children into her kitchen to help; she made Corynn and
her matching aprons and even let the kids use the little torch to burn the sugar
on top of their creme bruele on Christmas. 

We were so excited to have them in Lincoln with us. Taking the kids to
pumpkin patch last Halloween and helping the twins pick out homecoming

Nancy was born to be a grandma. She was exceptional. She loved those
children and it showed in so many special ways.  She was so excited to share
her joys and interests with them. Perhaps a little too excited because I'm 
pretty sure she fudged the twins' birthdates so they could start Prairie Preschool sooner.
She made all of the holidays fun; special Easter baskets and fun things 
for Halloween. Making sure Santa stopped by to visit on Christmas and
teaching the girls about May Day.

One of my favorite memories of Nancy is when she and Jeff took the twins
shoe shopping at the mall when they were two.  They were gone a really
long time and when they finally arrived back home, Nancy came in carrying
the shoes and Jeff brought each girl in one at a time still strapped in their
carseats. I immediately knew this couldn't be good. Apparently while at the 
mall, the salesman could only find one pair of light up shoes. And with twins -
that is not good. Nancy did her best to fix the situation and left Jeff to watch the
girls.  Once Nancy had it all resolved she found Jeff sitting on a bench but 
no girls. She immediately began to worry and panic about having lost the girls. 
They hadn't really lost them. Jeff was watching them hide in the clothing racks
and sneak out on unsuspecting shoppers. Jeff thought it was hilarious. Nancy
not so much.  After dropping off the girls, Nancy said "These  girls may look like you,
but they are just like their father!" And then she smiled- probably because she realized 
John was about to get as good as he gave. 

Another reason I like this story is because it illustrates how wonderfully
Jeff and Nancy complimented each other. They were an amazing example of
marriage and teamwork.  I absolutely love the story of how they met. Jeff
was the house boy at Nancy's sorority. Shortly after taking that job the cook up 
and quit. So Jeff seeing the opportunity in front him, thought 'hey cooking for a
house full of ladies and getting a promotion...heck ya I'll learn how to cook!'
It wasn't long before the 'house full of ladies' didn't matter as much as one in
particular. And I'm thinking he didn't learn to cook very well because he lost 
that job soon after. But I have a feeling it didn't matter much, because he had
the girl! 

Nancy loved her family. Her children and grandchildren. She dearly loved the
Kelly family and was diligent in sharing and passing along their family
traditions with our families. And being an only child growing up- she fully
embraced Jeff's siblings. I loved the way her face would light up when she talked
about them. Pat's sense of style and class. Sheila's ability to tell the best 
stories and KC's musical talents. Nancy was so set on making sure last 
Christmas was special for them. That their gifts from the heart were meaningful,
and at a time when she should have been focused on herself.  Just another 
example of her selflessness.

Many of my memories of Nancy are tied up in the example she set. She
showed me the kind of mother I hope to be. She loved John and I 
unconditionally. In the beginning, we made decisions she wouldn't necessarily 
have made and despite that she supported us. She never let us know her
disappointment or criticisms. She was always there for us. Always so supportive.
When Corynn was born with a birth injury, she spent many late nights, scouring 
the internet researching her diagnosis and treatment options. She went with us 
to Mayo Clinic, providing moral support, an extra set of ears and a sounding 
board for two young parents. She was with Corynn during her hospital stay and 
helped John and I take shifts. She was amazing.

The biggest lesson I learned from her was kindness. Nancy was always so
kind. So kind in fact it was hard for her joke or be sarcastic. Jeff and I
have always given each other a hard time and every once and while Nancy
would chime in with a really great zinger, but she would apologize before I could
tell her how awesome it was. Now I'm not saying she didn't have a sense of 
humor because serving your future daughter in laws bbq chicken legs and corn on 
the cob with white linen napkins is really funny! 

I firmly believe that a person's true character is revealed during 
hardships and adversity. And Nancy was strong, loving and kind to the very
end.  At every visit she would speak about how wonderfully supportive Jeff
was being and how she appreciated him so much. She put on a brave face
during the holidays and toughed out some family outings so that the children's 
Christmas wouldn't be ruined by her illness. At near the very end when her legs 
were causing her pain and she was needing help with everything. A health aid
 and I were helping move her from her bed. I saw her wince in pain, and
 immediately began to apologize. And she looked at me and said "no i'm sorry.
 I'm sorry you have to help me and do all of this." Even then she was thinking 
of others above her self. 

She took care of everyone for so long. Her husband, her children, her daughters in law, 
her mom and Jeff's was an honor to be with her and care for her when she 
needed it most.

Nancy, we will remember you always and love you forever. 

The family will be together again this weekend for Easter, which is good. I think family time with the grandchildren is just what Jeff needs! 

Tuesday, April 08, 2014


Color coded bookcases! Love them! I plan to do them all this way! 

Aren't they pur-dee!?

Sometimes it's the smallest things that make you smile! And I'll gladly take them!