A quiet moment, before the partying started
Wow - what a weekend!
I suppose emotions and family often get muddled up and confused. When you are with family you are feeling free and unfettered, and more likely to "open mouth, insert foot" - not that I need much help with that anyway. I tend to say what I think most the time, no matter who I am around.
It's just that most the time my family agrees with me, so I don't have to worry about what I say. I seem to have misplaced, just for a moment or two, my ability to remember that extended family is not precisely the same - and may not think exactly the same.
I made a cousin cry.
I don't think I was mean. I wouldn't even say that I disagreed with her. I simply was not excited for her, and I should have been. I should have celebrated with her, rather then cautioned her.
Caution has it's place - and I can't take back the caution that I gave, because I believe what I said - but I was so very wrong in my timing. Celebration comes first, because when someone you love is excited it is so very important to be excited with them.
So, my apologies my sweet cousin - Truly, I am excited for you, WITH you.
And that is only confession numero uno for this trip....
The above mentioned cousin was from my mom's side of the family... just a short little visit, since they just happen to live close to where we were. We were in Indiana for the express reason of celebrating my paternal grandmother's birthday.
I have so much I want to say, but, alas, it really doesn't need to be aired out on the world wide web.
I guess I can sum it up by saying that Divorce Sucks.
And I don't ever cuss, so you know I feel very strongly when I say that.
But, the birthday party was wonderful.
All six cousins, plus the two second cousins were all there for a photo op. It has been 8 years since we were last together - but I think the "lining up in height order" had only changed for the youngest - she moved from smallest to somewhere in the middle. Everyone else kept their placement...
We also have a thing for feet... don't ask... we don't know why.
Grandma had asked the four of us sisters to sing for her as her birthday gift. She actually teared up as we sang - and she is not the type to cry. That made us exceedingly happy! Why is it that someone else crying makes us full of joy?
I guess because it was just what we needed, to know that she was pleased.
I love that you can see her head in the corner of this picture...
The Binkley brothers (and their parents too!)
Grandma with my silly boys - the only great grandchildren!
Grandma and my silly sisters
Two of my handsome brothers-in-law
Now, don't these two look happy, and content, and peaceful?
Who would know that just 24 hours earlier they had been robbed?
Spending an hour at the Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, KY turned into several hours, and a lot of police paperwork. I am so proud of how cheerfully they handled themselves through that entire situation...
This is my cousin Maggie and her boyfriend Clay.
(sorry about the sideways photo - but it is late, and I cannot get it to turn. I am tired and I give up!)
After the party we went back to her mom's house and spent several hours sitting by the pool, having a deep and meaningful debate about religion.
Yes, I am deadly serious.
I am pretty sure we were still friends when we parted, although we definitely had to agree to disagree. He very much reminded me of my first boyfriend - so desperately seeking, wanting to find peace, but wanting even more to be in control. He wants to be the one in charge - admitting sin, and the inability to earn anything on his own, having to depend on Jesus - I believe those thoughts were overwhelming to him. I couldn't help but like him. He was a smart and kind young man - but I do worry what his way of thinking will do to my Catholic cousin's way of thinking. Those two thought paths really don't converge well....
Poor Andy had to hear quite a bit during this trip - and talk me through several emotional "trips" - upsetting a cousin (which he soundly chastised me for, since he happened to disagree with me anyway...), stressing over the awkwardness of "blended family" moments, tears shared with another cousin. There was a moment of missing him (Andy) so dreadfully when I realized that Clay probably would have appreciated hearing some of these thoughts about humbling himself before God from a man. Don't get me wrong - I miss Andy every minute of every day - truly, you can't even imagine how many minutes I spend missing him, when I should be doing something else - but at that moment I missed him simply because he was a male that I know without a doubt was not afraid to say what he believed.
To finish off the weekend, I went to the early Mass with my Aunt Beth before we headed out of town. Canaan came too, and thankfully behaved himself. I don't think he has ever sat through a service, since we have always attended churches that have a separate children's program - but there was something slightly inspiring about watching all the little ones stand, and kneel, and recite at the right moments.
I very much enjoyed the beauty of the honor and prestige given during even the casual Father's day Mass I attended. I might not agree with all the doctrine, but there is a lot of beauty in Catholicism. I believe that when God is honored, He is pleased - and for tonight, that is enough for me!