A Gathering of Family

Β The lines are fallen unto me in pleasant places;
yea, I have a goodly heritage. Psalms 16:6

Party  (1)

The past weekend we were to Indiana to celebrate my Mom’s birthday.
She turned 60 in Dec. and it wasn’t a good time for a party
with Dad’s broken leg and building the house.
So we decided to wait until Jan. when things slowed down and they had moved.
I invited all of her brothers and sisters and their spouses to come for a weekend
of being catered to and they came, for which we were thankful.

Party  (2)

Mom was born and raised in Holmes Co Ohio and moved to IN when she married.
All of her brothers and sisters still live there so it took time and effort on their part
to take a weekend and drive out to celebrate with her.
We tried to make it a weekend well worth their time,
I wanted it to be a time for them to enjoy each other and not have to work.
I hope we accomplished that.

Party  (3)

Party  (4)

It was a weekend full of a lot of things.
Reconnecting. Telling stories. Remembering.
Laughing till they cried.
Giving gifts.
Sharing their hearts. Quiet talks.
A meaningful church service.
Tears. And smiles.
I saw lots of smiles.
Smiles and laughter.
The kind that comes only from knowing someone well.
The kind that comes from being with family.

Party  (5)
{Dave & Emma}

Party  (6)
{Nick is 5 months younger then Kennedy and they are the same size}
{Ruby reads genealogy)

Party  (7)

We spent a lot of time cooking.
They spent a lot of time around the table.
It seemed the conversation flowed the best
when they were sitting with their coffee cups full.

Party  (8)

They brought 60 gifts for Mom.
Mom loves to give gifts,
so it was nice to see her get so many.

Party  (9)
{Sam, Ruby & Dontae}

Party  (10)

Lots of time spent talking.
And some listened.

Party  (11)

Saturday afternoon we took our children to different places
and came back to cook a Mexican meal.
We thought it would be quieter without all the littles running around
but the place was fairly rocking with noise all night long.

Party  (12)
{Maynard & Ruby}

Party  (13)

Her new coffee cup says,
“I don’t think I look 60 either!”

Party  (16)

I enjoyed sitting back and watching them,
seeing them interact with each other.
Listening to them tell stories of when they were young.
Remembering their 2 brothers that died young.
Recalling memories of their parents.
We laughed when they accused each other of things from growing up years,
digging deep for old stories.

They never made it to comfortable seats that night.
The stories and memories started and one just led to the other
and they stayed sitting at the table the entire evening.

Party  (14)

Party  (15)

They looked at old pictures.
That brought up more old memories
and the good times rolled on.

Party  (17)
It was so good to see them having fun together.

Party  (22)

Sunday morning coffee and chatting.

Party  (18)

The Yoder siblings (not in order of age, they say) πŸ™‚
Irene, Mark, Ruby, Sam, Marie, David, Sara

Party  (19)

With their spouses

Party  (20)
The sisters

Party  (21)

Sunday morning was a special time together.
We sang praises, shared, and learned from each other
and from Jesus.

Party  (23)

Party  (24)
One more meal and then goodbyes.
But not before they started planning the next get-together. πŸ™‚

When I talked to Mom later I mentioned that she looked forward to it for so long
and now it was over so quickly.
She said, “But it was such a good weekend that it’s ok.”
I was glad to hear that she enjoyed herself.

As I stood back and watched this family together, the verse at the top came to my mind
and I was reminded again of how much I have to be thankful for.
A goodly heritage is not to be taken lightly these days.
So many people have no idea what that is and I am blessed beyond measure with it.

I thought about my grandparents,
and how the choices they made years and years ago now effect me and my children.
It made me consider my choices and decisions
and think about how it will effect my future generations.
It made me thankful for a heritage rich in wisdom and right choices.
It encouraged me to keep going, keep trying and to not give up.
I feel blessed.

The lines are fallen unto me in pleasant places;
yea, I have a goodly heritage. Psalms 16:6

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14 thoughts on “A Gathering of Family

  1. Thank you for writing about this special weekend! I have known all of the Yoder’s all my life and they are my second cousins. Very special people! There’s nothing quite as good as family times like these!

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  2. We lived in Holmes Co. awile and went to Messiah to church. So know a lot of this family well. Was great seeing all these pics! Thanks for sharing this. Pat Sommers

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  3. Thank you for reminding us that family is a gift to treasure, it takes extra energy & effort sometimes, but so worth it! I love that you did this for your momma.

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  4. What a special thing for you to do for your mom! And I kept thinking how special and amazing it is that they all got together and ENJOYED being together… That is becoming more and more rare to hear of good family relationships, and it just blesses my soul to hear of your family and others like you! What a special memory for you all.

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  5. love that you guys all came together for a whole weekend to celebrate your mom – that speaks volumes right there of how special she is and how much she’s obviously invested in the lives of those around her. family is such a gift – and a family that gets along and enjoys being together even more so! :)) you are blessed indeed. glad you had this time. since living far from my family i always feel especially happy for people when i see them being able to have time with their family!! :))

    and now i’m hungry after seeing all these food pics!! haha!

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  6. Family times are so much fun! Your mom is beautiful, and I’m glad you were able to celebrate her like this. She always reminds me a little of my mom even though I think they have different personalities.

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  7. Shannon, Thanks for sharing these picts! I grew up with these folks πŸ™‚ Your mother and her sisters occasionally helped our family when we first came to Bethel. I still remember the color and fabric of several dresses your mother sewed for me when i was in 8th grade. I was so proud of those dresses and loved how they fit. Your Mom is 3 yrs older than I.

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