STOP THE BUS!!!! It is June folks, are you aware of this?!? It is true what they say, “Time flies when you’re having fun!” Well, I must be having an absolute BLAST because the last month is a blur! In May, our oldest daughter got engaged, graduated from Nebraska Wesleyan University and moved to Omaha for her first “Big Girl” job, we celebrated the birth of our youngest who is now NINE (I am still in denial), our oldest son graduated from Kearney Catholic High School, our second youngest son walked out of Central Elementary for the last time as a student (I am certain in two years when our youngest does this they will have to drag me out of the building sobbing) and our youngest daughter turned seventeen and is now going to be a senior in high school. That is A LOT of change for one mildly unstable Mama to handle!

Don’t worry, I am not a danger to myself or anyone else…I am not really unstable, I am just merely hanging on by a thread over here soaking up every little giggle, dirty handprint, snuggle, argument between siblings, spilled anything and everything, bicycle left dangerously close to my Suburban back tire, late night kiss as the “teenagers” stroll in and the random dance party and sing along that is our sweet, crazy, little family.

Just the other night as we sat together for supper, Payton (our youngest daughter) said, “So, this is our lives now!” It was eerily quiet as we sat there barely taking up half of our table, just the five of us as Liam was down in Omaha for State Track. Liam tells such animated stories of his daily happenings that it is going to be so quiet in the fall when he heads off to Benedictine to begin his journey.

The Sunday after she graduated from college, Taylor and her Fiancé, Andrew drove out of our driveway and headed back to their places in Omaha. That night I sobbed. I realized that from now on, an occasional visit would be it. She isn’t coming home to nanny or intern or anything other than to visit.

Her home is in Omaha now.

Her quiet, small little apartment for now and after the wedding in December, her home will be with Andrew. I’m sad, but I am Happy-Sad. My sweet husband always says that his greatest prayer for our children is that they will find that special someone that helps them grow closer to Jesus, loves them unconditionally,  and encourages them to be the best version of themselves. We are blessed to see that Andrew is indeed that someone for Taylor, God could not have created two more well suited people to share the journey of life together.

The end goal of parenting is that the little souls God shares with you will eventually go out into the great big beautiful world and be positive forces that raise more great little blessings! It is a tough gig, but worth the heartache.

There is an appointed time for everything,

and a time for every affair under the heavens.

A time to give birth, and a time to die;

a time to plant, and a time to uproot the plant.

A time to kill, and a time to heal;

a time to tear down, and a time to build.

A time to weep, and a time to laugh;

a time to mourn, and a time to dance.

A time to scatter stones, and a time to gather them;

a time to embrace, and a time to be far from embraces.

A time to seek, and a time to lose;

a time to keep, and a time to cast away.

A time to rend, and a time to sew;

a time to be silent, and a time to speak.

A time to love, and a time to hate;

a time of war, and a time of peace.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

Life changes, it has its ups and downs. I will look back on all the moments that lead us here with a grateful heart. God has been good to us, he has brought us through tough times, blessed us with abundance  and he has brought wonderful people into our lives. I see the Grace of God in our children and in my husband and I am humbled to be part of such a beautiful family. I will try not to mourn the passing of time, but look forward to all the beauty and amazement that lies ahead.

I know that when the house is quiet again in the fall, it isn’t a time to be sad, but to celebrate the laughter, chaos, dirty clothes and singing that once filled our home. I pray that your family will cherish every last second that this summer will bring to your family, the good times and the bad. It is the journey that God intends for us to cherish and it leads us closer to Him.


Traci Runge

Traci was born and raised in San Diego and has called Kearney, Nebraska home for the past 18 years. She is married to Darby Runge and together they have 6 children. They own and operate Pro-Tint, a window tinting business. Along with being a full-time mom, Traci is also a Manager and Certified Trainer with SendOutCards, she works with businesses and individuals to build relationships and grow their income through Relationship Marketing. Traci works hard to balance her roles of mother, wife and business owner. She strives to help make the world a better place through kindness and love and leading by example. Traci is committed to her family, church and community and can often be found volunteering in some capacity.