all the pictures in this post are from our family reunion at the coast this summer - not very timely, but fun all the same. and the sentiment that goes along with them is totally fresh: i adore my family. each of them is so neat and kind and fun. we have enormous amounts of fun together. we laugh a lot. and we usually cry, too (at least a few of us do). this time it was over kate's slideshow of her recent trip to ecuador. there just aren't many things that sadden my heart like the reality of children being abused or even just not loved enough. the stories she told us were heart-breaking. all the way home from the coast i prodded nate to start the adoption process-"i think that little Paul (pronounced Pa-ool) belongs with me," i kept telling him. "i love him already."
a few more details: we spent 3 days at the coast. so fun and beautiful and relaxing. i loved getting to know my sister in laws better. it's fun to watch our little group expand. i hope they know how much we love them and how thankful we feel to have them in our family.
we played boys vs. girls soccer on the beach (so fun!), made delicious food, celebrated rob's birthday (we have a little birthday tradition of going around the table and each saying something we love about the birthday boy/girl...i love that. it is sweet to hear what each person notices and appreciates about whoever we're celebrating.) we sang hymns, took a personality test, went to church all together, played bean-boozled and pool, and soaked up all the extra happy laying around.
tuesday afternoon we drove into portland to catch les miserables at 7:00. it was beautiful, spiritual, incredible, magical. a totally amazing performance. and then we listened to the sound track for a solid week afterward. duh.
wednesday morning we went our separate ways, some back to work, others off to camps/other engagements. ryan & lauren and our little family checked out voodoo donuts. it was sensational and fun, but i thought the donuts were just average. then we went to IKEA (hell on earth for nate) and got some stuff for our school room. and just like that the fun was over. sad.
greatest thing: there will always be more fun with our bunch. our lastest scheme for family fun is learning to play stringed instruments (twangy ones). rob's taken up the banjo. he learns songs and then plays them for us in voicemail messages. cute. halley and my dad are playing the guitar together most evenings. double cute. i'd like to take some sort of lessons with henry, (guitar or banjo?) he's totally on board. i'm sure that enthusiasm will last until he actually has to start practicing). sounds cute to learn together but it will probably be hairy and insane. lauren already strums like a siren. and ryan's already commissioned uncle ben to build him a mandolin...so he'll be joining the hootenanny too. everyone else will be on vocals, claps or the tambourine :)
family, if you're reading: this is me blowing you a hundred kisses.
and saying i love you. i miss you. i think you're the best ever...