Coming home




Let me say from the outset that I am so happy Phil got the chance to go to Harvard – it was such an honor for him and he’s always been a top-notch student (I’ve known him since 3rd grade).

This past Fall, he went to Harvard for eight weeks of intense study – examining over 200 case studies and listening to over a dozen special guest speakers. School days typically started at 8am and ended at 11pm, Monday – Saturday.

During those eight weeks, the kids and I managed to navigate commitments, appointments, homework and double bookings with lots of help from babysitters, friends and family.

However, there were still a few trouble spots that meant a special phone call –  to settle a dispute, share a misery, ask for advicewhen only Dad would do.

Three hours before Phil came home, all hell broke loose.  Eight weeks of him being away – all the stress, and worry, and missing him – came to the surface and erupted.  I sent us all to our rooms. Even me.

After 15 minutes, I had the kids come down for a quick family meeting to get everyone back on track.  I guess even good changes require some processing.  That’s something to remember.

Thankfully, we’re committed to working through these things together. I know every time we crash and then come together to heal, the life we live as a family gets better.

So, with a half an hour to spare, the boys went outside to play basketball and keep a lookout.

I started making supper.

Will and Emma went upstairs.

Finally, I heard the shouts from the driveway, “He’s home! Dad’s home!”.  

I think we all felt the weight of his absence being lifted off our shoulders. Even Sonny was on his hind legs, trying to welcome Phil home and be part of the excitement.

I meant to capture all the hugging but I somehow spaced it in the happiness of seeing him home – except for this one with Emma in the garage.

Phil and Emma

Is there anything better than coming home at suppertime?

Phil Homecoming

We sat down, Phil lead us in prayer, we ate.

Welcome Home wide shot

 And, just that quickly, it was like he had never left.


Still growing...

Jennifer Ebeling
Jennifer Ebeling is a proud Minnesotan and U of MN alumni. Gooooooo Gophers! Each week, Jennifer produces and hosts Still Growing - a gardening podcast dedicated to helping you and your garden grow. The show is an in-depth interview format. Guests featured on the show share a passion for gardening and include authors, bloggers, professional gardeners, etc. Listeners and guests of the show can join the Still Growing community on Facebook. It's a place to ask questions, share garden stories, interact with great guests featured on the show, and continue to grow and learn. Jennifer and her husband Philip have four children, a big golden lab named Sonny, and live in lovely Maple Grove, Minnesota. P.S. When she's not teaching her four kids a new card game - or teaching them how to drive a car - Jennifer loves inspiring individuals and groups to maximize and personalize their home & garden.
Jennifer Ebeling
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