In my post, Remembering 9/11, I talked about how my first instinct was to gather my family – my husband and my children – around me.  As my husband and I sat in church on Sunday, 9/11/2011, ten years later, I was struck by the fact that my children are scattered across the country.

The following are the pictures of them that I have programmed into my phone to pop up when they call.  I intentionally chose light hearted, fun pictures.  They make me smile when I see them appear.

My oldest and her husband spent the weekend in Tucson, Arizona.  They may be moving there soon.  My son-in-law is a mean old 7th grade comm arts teacher, and I love his “mean” reading picture.

Our second oldest lives in southern California.  She is planning a trip home for the holidays this year.  It has been two years since we have had all five girls together in one place, and we are looking forward to it.  Especially since it may be awhile before it happens again.

Our middle child – I like to call her the red headed wonder child.  She will be graduating from college this year with an engineering degree, and she is often way too serious.  She is small in stature so people often underestimate her abilities.  By the time people realize how smart she is, it is too late.  We suspect that her first job out of college will take her away from home, too.

Our sweet, generous baby girl, Twin A.  After a difficult four years in high school, she is revelling in college life, and we are so happy for her.  She is almost 6 hours away, and we will probably only get to see her at holidays and school breaks.  She emails, IMs, and calls all the time.  Not because she is homesick, but because she is her Mama’s baby girl.

Our baby by a full 2 minutes, Twin B.  Her start to college life was a little bumpy, and she had to make some difficult decisions.  But she did it and executed them.  I was most worried about her, and not just because of the laundry.  It took her a few weeks (and four trips) to get settled into school and, by the looks of the pictures on Facebook, she is having a good time.

This is an old picture of my hubby.  We have so many pictures of him making goofy faces.  That is why he is known as Uncle Goofball to his nieces and nephews.

Part of all of this adjusting to our newly empty nest is adjusting to the fact that our children either have or will have their own homes and their own families some day soon.  I realized this fact when one of my friends posted a reply to my 9/11 post by saying the tragedy made her wonder why she moved away from her mom and to the big city a few months earlier.  Now that she is settled with a husband and young children of her own, I bet her first thoughts would be different if a similar tragedy happened today.  I bet that she would think of her two sweet babies and her husband first.  That is as it should be.  Let’s hope we never have to test that theory.

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