Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The 14th Anniversary

She set the GPS to Logan, O. and the trip away from the family reunion was underway. How refreshing to travel scenic routes rather than the monotonous freeway! Time was not a great factor, so the pace allowed for frequent stops, enjoying the route. Humorously, one potty-break came soon after a sign for Pee Run Rd. They crossed the Cheat Mountains in West Virginia and she read to him while he focused on driving.
'Destination on left' was announced several hours later and the car was unloaded at the hotel. It wasn't a fancy place to stay, but the money saved went towards the gourmet meal at the log-cabin restaurant later that evening. They spoke of years gone by and dreamed about the future again. Sleep came easy that night after bellies full of food and wine.
Plans to hike the State Park the next day were slightly foiled with rainy weather, but they plowed on over the 4 mile trail anyway. Wet and tired, the anticipated long trip to home seemed formidable. But again, the things to see along the non-highway roads, coupled with snacks to munch on and an inspiring time of voicing prayers for the children, made the time pass rather quickly.
Thankful to be home, they unpacked the car, showered and crawled into bed, the oh, so familiar bed. And that's how the celebration went. They are blessed to have each other and to know God is directing their steps and that each year is a gift from Him.

Families: you can't choose them, but you don't want to lose them!

This weekend, the Showalter family converged in VA for a memorable reunion. While we had plenty of time to sit and relax as a group, we also perused the new store my dad and step-mom volunteer time to. There among the second-hand items we all found a treasure or two. The same outing took us to a farmer's market where we lollied through antiques, a favorite past-time of my sister and her husband.
Back at the house we spread out to visit in smaller groups. Some found conversation around building a puzzle, a group hovered around the Showalter geneology book where Grandpa was sharing stories, and competition mounted among the gaggle playing the family game of Scrabble.
In the background Peeka, short for Peeka Boo, was squawking in his bird cage, hoping someone would pay him mind. His moment came when all gathered around his perch to hear him whistle his repertoire of tunes and imitate Roy's electric razor.
The next day we filled in a whole pew in Dad's church and had a meaningful visit to Mom's gravesite, coincidentally on her birthday! After a scrumptious meal, embellished with fresh tomatoes, cucumbers and zucchini from family gardens, we played some rousing rounds of Dictionary, another tradition we enjoy. Dad makes up the zanniest definitions, while Libby and John seem most adept at making associations with the unfamiliar words that were chosen from the Dictionary. Note: new word I tucked away in my vocabuary was hugger-mugger. Bet you don't know what that means!
Departures and goodbyes were said with some tears and much thanksgiving for the time together. Until we meet again, we'll stay in touch by phone and email. My family, you're the best!