I have an amazing family. I am one of the original Gang Of Five which has grown over the years to Gang of Six, then Seven and finally up to Gang of Ten (we all got married).
That's my wedding; I was the last of my generation to get married, and by that time we had six ~ with two more on the way ~ in the next generation!
Within a decade or two of that, we had added another generation that was 14 and has now grown through marriages to 20 and still another generation of ~ currently ~ 8 (I'm including the one who will make her appearance in October).
We are scattered to the four winds these days. At least we (currently) do not have any out of country, but we are spread from Washington state, Utah, Washington D.C., Tennessee, and the South Carolina Low-Country; with the main emphasis being in the Birmingham area (and I'm still trying to figure out how that happened!)
My parents this year celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary. Yes, we are all very aware of the blessing that is. Ten years ago they celebrated their 50th and most of the family (at least most of those who were family at that time) made it to the celebration and reunion.
The only thing Mom and Dad requested for their anniversary this year was another reunion. Unfortunately it wound up being only those east of the Mississippi and south of the Virginia-Tennessee border, but we still had 19 there (almost 50% thanks to the Coming Attraction).
We shared some hilarious stories.
We ate. A lot. Once we got the charcoal going (Thanks, Ben!)
We laughed....a lot!
We went out on the boat (Thanks, Robert!)
|My gorgeous girls!|
And even went swimming....
We hung out by the pool.
We played games.
We watched a beautiful slide show (Thanks, John and Diana!)
We rejoiced in the recent scan that shows no cancer (Thank You, Jesus!)
We prayed over our cousin who is battling his cancer.
We teased each other.
Most of all, we rejoiced in God's goodness and faithfulness to us as a family.
On our first morning together, some of us (*ahem*) met together for family prayers (that's what we grew up calling it) and read together Psalm 34. There were a lot of other Scripture passages I thought about reading, and a lot of things I thought about saying. But through the night before, I was impressed that most of all, we needed to focus on giving thanks to God for His goodness, and love, and mercy, and kindness and faithfulness to us as His children. Between a clean scan for my sister-in-law, sixty years of marriage for my parents, and a new baby on the way, it seemed most appropriate.
So "Magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt HIS name together"!
Now I can start planning next year's reunion!