so, it wasn't for a fun reason. but Bubba and i took a little trip up to Monterrey, California. it was a really quick trip, but we got a few hours of down time, so Barrett and I took our kids for a scenic drive through Pebble beach. Colin was so happy seeing all the golfers, and about came out of his skin when he saw about a million sea lions.
and hanging out with these guys was the icing on the cake.
so, the reason for our trip was a sad one. my Uncle Ralph passed away, and we went to the funeral. it is never easy saying goodbye to the people we love. nor is it easy to see the grief and pain of your family who lost their husband, father, grandfather, brother. but there is a silver lining to moments like these. the family reunion we had this weekend was a celebration of generations of love. we feel blessed to know that our time to be separated from lost loved ones is brief. we are so thankful for the Lord's plan of happiness that allows us to be sealed to our families through generations, and for eternity.
Colin was able to meet is doppelganger finally. everyone says he is the spitting image of my cousin Matt. seriously, Colin, this is a good thing. lots of people would love to look like that when they're 40(ish). incidentally, growing up everyone though i looked like Matt and strangers mistook us for siblings often.
remember in September when i took a family picture that included 2 of my cousins. well, here are a few more. (we were still missing, Collier and Jane.) and some of our kids are pictured, though by my count 35 are missing! yeah, i have a big and also awesome family. and also, sometimes when i talk about my many cousins i feel like people assume it's so big i don't really know everyone or something. well, this is not the case. we were raised very close, (some geographically) but mostly close in that we got together often, and made time to attend each others special events (baptisms, graduations, etc.) each of my cousins is also my friend, and those in my age group are among my very best friends. so looking at this photo i see nothing but a huge group of dearly beloved people. it's a great blessing and a privilege to have friends like these that you get to call family.
my mom and her siblings, including my sweet aunt Nita who lost her husband of 60 years! what a great example!
and our little Beardsley contingent. so fun being with my siblings, even if i was a little whacked out from lack of sleep, and our reunion lasted all of 30 hours. we definitely made the most of it.
(dear family i have barely begun to go through these images, but i will send disks out soon)