Saturday, January 9, 2010


This afternoon I dissembled Christmas in the house. (I had welcome help from Cooper, Katie, Jim, Betty and Uncle Jim.)

Everything in this house has a Steve connection. Christmas decorations and ornaments are no exception.

Most of our big vacations are represented: Eiffel Tower, Space Needle, Golden Gate Bridge, New York skyline, Baltimore's Inner Harbor, Mackinac Island horses, Dumbo, Mickey Mouse, White House.

There are ornaments handed down from Steve's family. Ornaments handmade by Cooper and Katie. Photos of Steve holding baby Cooper or baby Katie.

Steve and I enjoyed watching Disney movies together even before we had children. Steve especially loved Toy Story 2 and Woody's horse Bullseye. So, we have a Woody and Bullseye ornament. Cooper insists that it's his, never fully understanding that we would have bought it before we had children.

Taking down the tree full of so many memories was difficult, but it was eased by the joy of all those memories.

After everyone had left and the kids were asleep, I packed away the last few Christmas boxes and returned our everyday photos and knickknacks to their proper homes. And then I could hear Steve's voice in my head.

"I love this house."

Steve said this often. And then he would describe what he loved. The colors on the walls, the arrangement of photos, the art collected over the years, the lived-in, cozy feeling of the home we'd created together.

When I feel overwhelmed by grief -- and lately that's been often -- I try to calm myself with reminders of how blessed I was to find true love, to enjoy a heavenly marriage, to experience life with Steve. Those reminders are all around me -- in this home, in Cooper and Katie and in my heart.

Steve and Tyra, Seattle, 1996

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