After much preparation, especially by Saydi and Jeff who were in charge of the reunion this year, we had some spectacular days together with 18 adults and 19 children 13 and under! As you can see by the new picture on the header, all 37 of us gathered at Bear lake for our magical days of reunion, recharging, reliving, renewing and regressing into memories and so many good times spent at Bear Lake in the past.
We spent every summer at this beautiful spot on earth nearby where I grew up while the kids were growing up. There we learned together, practiced together, ate together, read together, fought together, worked together, played together and slept together in a little A frame which eventually included a small add-on that brought the total up to three bedrooms. The kids slept on fold down beds that their dad had made to resemble the inside of a ship’s hold and there they listened to endless stories from their dad’s imagination as well as the true story of “Old Ephraim”.
Where did all that time go? From this:
To this moment at our home in McLean, Virginia with our first three:
…to the joyous arrival of #6 on our mission in Epsom, Surrey England
….and on to number nine at our home in Salt Lake:
Some of our dearest memories were those fun and funny early days at Bear Lake, complete with cousins who, along with our kids are all grown and now have families of their own.
(Note, cousin on left is totally dejected because his fish is frozen…no luck at the old fishing hole for him that day!) Boy on right (Noah) looks like he just wants to go to the bathroom amidst all that pride!
Those many years were filled with more than we could write in a hundred blogs. We were and are laden with blessings almost beyond our ability to bear! Our “photo shoot” night was so fun and even more fun to look back on. Here are a few snapshots that I managed to steal while the real photographers with the whiz-bang cameras were doing their thing!
Saren and Jared, living in St. George and turning the world of Motherhood into something wonderful through ThePowerofMoms.com…and their incredible five:
Shawni and Dave, spending most of their time in Arizona (when Dave is not in China) and contributing to countless moms through 71toes.blogspot.com….and their fabulous five:
Josh is always behind the camera! No shot of him that night. Shucks! On the Monday after the reunion he returned to Ethiopia where he has been working on a project and will return to teaching his beloved second grade class at a Charter School in Arizona in August.
Saydi and Jeff, living in Boston with a special gift for finding and helping those in need as well as showing the joy of families through photography…. and their precocious three:
Jonah and Aja and their three spectacular, along with their newest family member, a chicken named Ponyo, living in Sequim, Washington and giving a new meaning to “new age”! They brought joy with the announcement of a new arrival in December!
Talmadge and his amazing new wife Anita just returned to us from a 9 month Humanitarian “Honeymoon” in Mozambique and India and some time in Switzerland which is Anita’s home and are now headed for a new experience in their old stomping grounds in New York City.
Noah and Kristi and their darling three have done lots of amazing things but maybe the most amazing has been living in their home on the upper East side of Manhattan in 480 square foot for five years!
Eli and Julie, living and working in the Washington D.C. area with fun and challenging jobs and with a view of the Washington Monument, the nation’s Capitol and the Nats Baseball Stadium from their brand new home bordering Capital Hill.
And our “dripping with passion” baby Charity has nicely recovered from returning from her mission in England last year, spent an extraordinary month in India and after a fun and challenging year in Provo, is San Francisco bound!
Our family has grown and changed and exceeded our wildest dreams, but some things never change:
How blessed we are! We acknowledge His hand in all things!