Friday, August 17, 2012

Making ready

8:55 p.m. Today's project was to gather up my "foodstuffs" for several frozen desserts and a big batch of green tomatillo salsa for our annual "August Party." I always chuckle inwardly when I see or say the word "foodstuffs" because our youngest son says it's not a word, even after having it proved to him from a dictionary! (So of course I'll find an occasion to say the word while Steven's down here from Fresno for the party)! You can't accuse the Kruckenbergs of not having the courage of our convictions.

The August Party started as a semi-joke over 25 years ago. The idea that family members from both sides would come to Riverside in the middle of August to celebrate my dad's, Kriss',Steven's, Auntie Sharon's and my birthday from much cooler Orange and San Diego counties was laughable! But the tradition has lived on, with barbecuing burgers, dogs, and sausages; enjoying all manner of side dishes and salads; even our and others' (fresh or fried green) homegrown tomatoes and corn on the cob, as well as sampling fabulous frozen desserts. Except for weddings, it's the party of the year.

 Most years, first for my children and their cousins, and recently for THEIR children, we've had a jump house; for wildly physical teenage boys and their friends, the trampoline was the top draw. We enjoyed a series of above-ground swimming pools too. So you can see how the boys would do it: Trampoline into pool; trampoline into jump house, nearly collapsing it; or trampoline into jump house and then right into the pool! Our series of dogs just loved all the company in the backyard!

So much fun--and the total absence of alcohol or any other mood-altering substances. Who needs them? As Christians, we have outrageous fun living by Ephesians 5:18:

Be not drunk with wine, in which is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit.

Last year, my thought was to have Steve's and my 30th anniversary celebration, with a renewal of vows at church and a potluck party here with family and our many church friends. RSVPs came in fast, our Pastor John agreed to perform the ceremony, and the down payment was made. Then suddenly, Steve took a nosedive in his dementia, which seems to be how it happens: he maintains a plateau of manageable sameness, and then Boom! a downhill mental tumble. So I cancelled the event, because Steve would have been overwhelmed. Was I unwise to even consider it? God"s promise to give me counsel is what I stood and still stand on, as Proverbs 16:20 (KJV) says,

He who handles a matter wisely will find good,
And whoever trusts in the LORD,
  happy is he.

This year's party will be very different, to be held at Emeritus Villa De Anza assisted living where my dad, an 85 -year-old birthday honoree, lives ! We will have the use of the upstairs Party Room, which I reserved weeks ago. We'll get up there by elevator. There will be no barbeque or jump house, but we'll be enjoying our fellowship and food together, along with newest grandson Clark.And the funny cards are very much looked forward to. I've been working on getting some care giving assistance for Steve, but so far it's been hard to schedule someone for Sunday afternoon. The Lord will work things out for Steve's personal care, I am certain. Already we have the use of the facility's commercial freezer, alleviating one concern--melting ice cream and whipped cream! We'll experience love and joy, no matter how God works out the details. I John 1:3b inspires me:

...truly our felowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ.

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