When was the last time you gathered together will all of your extended family to honor a special member? Often times, it seems like it is at a funeral. I remember when my grandfather died many years ago, it was the first time I had seen my cousins in years. We decided at that time, we should make it a point to see one another in happy times. That is hard to do when people are spread out across the country. If you are married, then you have two families to try to keep up with. Despite the hurdles, we’ve kept to our promise and gathered together (Indiana to California) for vacations and weddings.
This year, Dan’s family came to California to celebrate their mother’s 89th birthday. Believe it or not, every living member of her family came for the event. With her husband, four grown children, their spouses, her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, there were 24 in attendance! That was a lot of people to gather not for a one day event, but for a week of activities leading up to the party. In this one week we celebrated 5 actual birthdays: July 4th, 5th, 7th, and two on the 8th! The grand finale party, Grandma’s 89th, was on the 8th.
Everyone did their own touristy things during the day, but those who could, rallied at our home for dinner, swimming and great conversation. A special “kid station” was set up outside so the little girls had shade and were pool safe. We brought out the play kitchen, tiny table and chairs, the easel, and other “girly toys.” The two 3 year old’s became fast friends despite just meeting one another.
Nothing is more special than being with family. We are so abundantly blessed to be able to have family to share the good times with. Glad we are retired so we could do all the fun things with everyone and still be able to plan meals at our home for everyone to share in. This was a great summer to remember. I hope it will be possible to do something similar with my side of the family soon!