November has pretty much been a blur which is how life seems to go these days. Life has been full with family things and church things and quite a few photography jobs as well. This past week, was extra special and I thought I’d take a few minutes tonight to share some pictures and words to officially commemorate the memories.
Last weekend, I flew out to Michigan for a very short trip to see my family. With the craziness of our past summer, we weren’t able to get out to see everyone so this helped to make up for that.
In Michigan on my side of the family, I have 15 nieces and nephews between my two sisters. While a few of the nephews were out of town hunting, I was able to spend some quality time with the 13 others that were around. Much of that time was spent indoors because Michigan is COLD this time of year but we found a few fun activities to do, one being buying and building about six different gingerbread house kits.
One of the hardest parts of not living by family, is not getting the chance to be with these awesome kids more often. But I guess it’s also that part that makes time spent together so incredibly special.
Aunt Laura might have also bought both families hermit crabs. Granted, hermit crabs are the simplest and maybe saddest of all pets because they aren’t super cuddly or necessarily that exciting, but since both sisters preferred low key pets (probably because most time is spent caring for their very large families) that is what we ended up with. Thankfully, the kids didn’t seem to mind that much and were happy with their newfound family pets.
I’m also proud to share that one of the nights, I cooked for everyone. Being someone who both has a small family of four and who doesn’t love cooking in general, I actually felt a great sense of accomplishment, successfully cooking for nineteen people.
The weekend went by fast. I did all I could to fit in baby cuddles, chats with my sisters and parents and lots of games with the nieces and nephews.
And even though it was quick, I’m so glad for the opportunity to fly back to Michigan and spend time with my amazing family. It was so good to connect with my sisters, encourage them all I could and spend quality time in my hometown.
It took three delayed flight times but thankfully I was able to fly in late Monday and arrive home just in time for Ellee’s 13th birthday which was on Tuesday. We spent the afternoon getting her hair done (a subtle ombre) and then had a nice family birthday dinner at the Diner. Her friend party was on Thursday and we celebrated at hibachi.
Sitting around the hibachi tables, I was overcome with gratitude for Ellee and her circle of friends. She was surrounded by a small group of friends, most of whom she’s known for years.
The food delicious and the entertainment was fun as well. It was the perfect way to welcome her into her teen years.
In addition to her friends, she also invited her brother’s friends who have been like extra older brothers to her over the years.
We finished the afternoon at home with cake and presents and all in all, it was the best way to celebrate our sweet Ellee. It really does seem like yesterday that we were bringing our baby girl home from the hospital and I found myself wondering where the years have gone many times this past week.
And that sums up some of my favorite November memories. We’re definitely looking forward to the short school week as well as our annual Thanksgiving festivities and thanks for taking time to check in and catch up.