Friday, July 14, 2017

Vacation Part One

On Wednesday June 14 we headed out for a week long trip. The main idea of the trip was to take in my sister Rachel's wedding in Texas.

On Wednesday we traveled as far as Monterey, TN, where my aunt and cousins live. My cousin Jake Troyer has a family of five sons and one daughter. Our boys got to know theirs last year and wanted to visit them. They graciously gave us supper, a bed (more than one!) for the night and breakfast the next morning.

While we were there they hosted a small group Bible study/prayer meeting. This gave us the opportunity to meet some more people. They had informed us beforehand that there is a Melvin Lapp in their community. Well, our son is also Melvin Lapp! When Melvin came, he and Thomas discussed their roots and decided they are not related. But it was of interest that his daughter lives close by in our community. Her husband had just contacted Thomas prior to our journey, asking if we will allow them to get raw milk from us. Then the Sunday after we came home, we met this young couple at our church! Interesting world.

My 95 yr old aunt Katie who is Jake's mother, lives in a trailer in their backyard. She came over to visit with us and brought her Scrabble game along. Usually her daughter plays with her on Wed afternoon but on this particular day her daughter had a chiropractor appointment. She said, "Maybe Marie will play Scrabble with me." Indeed! A game I enjoy. Winning isn't so important to me but I love playing with words.

Jake's wife Chris and I had so much to talk about that we had a hard time concentrating on the game. We have a lot in common as homeschoolers with 5 sons. Her next to youngest son brought a sister with him (twins). So she has one daughter who is an excellent helper to her. Her children are a bit older than mine so she has finished her homeschooling and is reaching out to hurting people, which interest we also share.

Jake and Chris gave their children 8 years of formal academics and then turned to other hands-on interests. The day we were there the 17 year old (one of the twins) was out on the job in charge of a pole barn crew. Their sons are amazing, confident young men. Two (or more) of them have their pilot's license- yes, that's for an airplane. Their only daughter (17) runs a small cafe.

We had a hard time leaving from there but set out for Texas the next forenoon. We got to our destination (Janie Jones' house) at 11:30 pm after an eventful drive through Dallas and Fort Worth. We were supposed to get a route south before getting deep into Dallas. We missed that one and drove to the other side of Ft Worth to get another. It wasn't too bad, but for the tired drivers it was a bit upsetting.

Our hostess was gone and had left air mattresses plus a hide-a-bed for the boys. We couldn't find the tools to inflate the mattresses so they put couch cushions and/or blankets on the floor and went off to dreamland. Everyone was very weary from the long drive.

The countryside as we traveled was beautiful with it's varied terrain. Flat land and hilly, trees and wide open fields, I enjoyed all of it. Anticipating forsaken country, it wasn't quite what I expected. Our last trip to Texas had us always in town or city so we did get to see a bit more of what "real Texas" is like this time. Although, as big as Texas is, I'm sure there's lots more to see!

Seeing family again was great. We siblings were all there except for my brother Paul from Honduras who was traveling elsewhere with his family. We thought our family would need to make the food for the wedding but our cousin, 'Retta Miller did all the work and we just relaxed with each other. We did have our daily food needs to look after but that was very doable.

Daddy and Mama and a couple of our children made the dinner rolls one day. And we had a lot of work to do the day of the wedding. Hauling things to the venue, cleaning, decorating, etc. And then taking it all back down, cleaning again and putting things away. What a tiring Sunday. It surely was not a day of rest.

Texas was quite warm. Jason and Rachel had an outdoor wedding and it was too warm for me. I stayed inside the nearby building where I could watch and hear what was happening without endangering my health. It was next to a lake and there was a good breeze going most of the time. Such a breeze that the bride had to fight with her veil. 

The programs were printed on fans - a thoughtful way to do it for a warm Texas wedding.

Everything was beautiful. Colors of dusty rose and blue. The tables were decorated with books and candles. Probably other things too, but I notice people more than decorations. And I was cleaning bathrooms while others decorated.

To those who have an interest in such things - The wedding meal was Southern picnic style. Grilled chicken breast, potato salad, baked beans, strawberry spinach salad, dinner rolls and watermelon. Fresh fruit and cheese cubes were served as appetizers.

Stephen was a photographer but unfortunately I got no pictures whatsoever. The link will take you to some of his photography but there are no wedding pictures there. If you see his profile picture you might freak out. He is totally in costume. 

Somehow the Lord brings other homeschooling people into our lives. Jason's uncle & aunt homeschooled their children. He was a public school teacher and realized he didn't want his children to experience that world. So they blessed their children with a home education.

My sisters Verina, Joanna and I were the cake cutters. It ended up being me cutting and they serving. Something I've never done before- cut the wedding cake. I was coached by the coordinator's helper and when done she said, "You did it perfectly. Now you can add that to your resume. There's good money in cake cutting!" Oh really? Hmm... that's not a hard job.

Our aunt Martha Summy and two daughters came from PA for the occasion. The only few who came of our many relations. (Excepting the cook.) I know there were others who would have enjoyed being there but it was a long ways away from many. God bless Aunt Martha Schwartz who was greatly distressed over the fact that she couldn't be there.

On Monday morning there was a brunch at Jason's parent's place and then Jason and Rachel opened their presents. It was a good opportunity to get to know each other as families a little better.

I will post more about our trip in another post as this one is getting too lengthy.

Are you a road runner?

Or a homebody?

I'm both, if that's possible.