Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Family Wedding + Family Reunion = Incredible Awesomeness

A handful of cousins.  Photo credit to my sister's date, Eugene, from South Africa.
I am blessed with family.  This is something I've known for as long as I can remember, but for which I grow more thankful with each passing year.  Its not just that there are a lot of us (there is), or that we're still fairly close together geographically (we are), but also that these people are just an incredibly funny, musical, hardworking, game-playing, intelligent, joke-making, kind, generous, considerate, happy group of people.  I sure lucked out.  Praise be!
A quintessential Montana skyline in Opheim, MT
Out for a walk/cycle on a sunny Saturday morning.
As such I am sure thankful that during the month of June I was able to spend time with a good chunk of my family--I took a trip out to the Seattle area to be with my sister and her family and then, after 18 hours at home, flew (in a tiny 8 passenger plane) up to northern Montana for a family wedding and reunion.
Fort Peck Lake (technically a reservoir) as seen from the air.  Its so big and pretty.
The group shot.  A "small" showing for our family some might say, but it was still almost 40 people!
It wouldn't be family reunion without playing games.
The wedding and reception were lovely, as weddings usually are, in my opinion.  I am always eager to celebrate love.  Leah and Kevin look to be made for each other.  I am happy.  Leah and I were very close cousins growing up.  I loved spending a week or two on the farm with her and her family.  Its was wonderful to be there for their big day.  They had a live band and tasty snacks at the reception.  I do love to dance....and eat!  I had a very good time.
Leah and Kevin's wedding, just started, as the candles were being lit.
Happy dancers in a pretty room enjoying the good tunes and good times.
When people ask how the reunion was I invariably end up mentioning how much I enjoy the Talent Show.  This is something that I took for granted as a child.  "What?  Everyone's family doesn't have Talent Show? Hmmm...I thought that was just something everyone did at their family reunions."  Turns out that is not the case which makes our Talent Show all the more awesome.  We're a widely talented family, too--from kids showing off how they can roll their tongues to adults acting out skits its always good for a smile and laugh.  There is always much singing.  Everyone should have a chance to share their talents more often!
A vocal trio for our enjoyment.  Photo credit to my niece, Keleigh.
My talent was lighting a cigarette lighter (and holding it up and moving it around) with my "monkey toes."  Photo credit to my niece, Keleigh.
The last act of the Talent Show was my aunt Maggan leading the group in a few yoga poses she's learned and enjoys.  It was a great way to close out the night, I thought.  It got everyone actively involved.
In addition to the Talent Show I also thoroughly enjoyed my time up at Fort Peck Lake.  I have so many very fond memories of camping and swimming and playing there in my childhood.  At one point I dreamed of growing up to join the Army Corps of Engineers so I could work at the Dam.  I loved everything about that place.  It was wonderful to be back.  It was especially wonderful now that I am a birder, too.  I watched a Caspian Tern dive and catch fish for about twenty minutes until my niece was driven mad with boredom and we moved on.
A view of Powerhouse 2 and the outflow area for hydroelectric plant as seen from the Interpretive Center.
A Caspian Tern in big, beautiful, blue sky.
We had a lovely picnic lunch in the campground where I used to camp as a girl--they'd changed the playground and paved the nature trail!  Its funny the details one remembers.  We gathered in a big circle and made two rounds with everyone sharing something new and exciting that had happened since the last time we were all together.  It ran the gamut--a new baby on the way, the death of a parent, a 6th grade graduation, wedding anniversaries celebrated, and vacations taken.   It was great.  Then we took a stroll down to the Interpretive Center.  That was another thing that didn't exist when I was a kid.  It was very interesting and educational though.
The family news-and-updates circle!
A walk to the Interpretive Center with both Powerhouse 1 and 2 visible in the background.
Photo credit to my cousin, Issy.
As usual, I was glad to be home again--and Matt and Ginger were both glad I was, too.  In fact, Ginger slept in bed with me for the second time ever.  The first was after we returned from our Honeymoon Megavacation.  I guess that is the secret to getting her to sleep with me--"abandon" her for at least a week.
Its good to be missed.
But, the time with these people I love and don't get to see often enough went too fast, too, as it always does.  So it goes.


  1. Thank you for sharing this Beth. It was wonderful to be with you, even if for a brief time. Sam mentioned how much he enjoyed the opportunity to visit with you. We ARE very lucky to have such a beautiful, extended family. It is a blessing not afforded to all.

    1. So, so true, Megan! I enjoyed seeing you all very much, too! Its so great that we still make time to do these things together--we're so blessed and that is worth celebrating always!

  2. I love the kitty picture at the end! What a great post!!!!

    1. Thanks! She is so beautiful and fun that its easy to capture in photo!

  3. What a fun family you have! Wonderful.


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