February is a mixed month for me emotionally, spiritually, and practically. I am reminded of a quote by Joyce Rupp, “Joy and sorrow are sisters and they live in the same house.” I experience much joy in February as both Bethany and Nathan celebrate their birthdays. I love celebrating birthdays. Nate turned 12 on Feb. 4 and I pulled him out of school for the day and took him up to Steven’s Pass where he snow boarded and I skied. While we were riding on the chairlift he told me about how he likes to hum while he’s boarding and that he makes up songs in his head as he goes along. He also shared with me how he likes to be quiet on the lift, just watching other people skiing, or boarding, and listening to the sounds on the mountain (I loved hearing that from him). We had such a good day together, hanging out, listening, watching, eating lunch, and playing on the mountain. Bethany turns 17 on Feb. 27. I can’t believe that she is turning 17, that just seems so amazing to me. She is such a sweet, smart, talented and beautiful teenager and I love it when she opens ups and chats about her day with me. I’m not sure yet what we are going to do to celebrate her day, we’ll see. I am really excited about a gift that I found for her and will write later about how she responds to it. The sorrow part of February is that it is the anniversary of my dad’s passing, and that is still just hard. He died Feb. 23, 2007. This year marks the 2nd anniversary of his death. Last year was hard, this year is a little better. I think of him often and miss his physical presence at various times. Life is a balance. Emotions for me are a balance, and February is a mix of joy and sorrow living in this same house, me.