My Ohio Family

Growing up in southern Indiana meant traveling to Amish Country Ohio to see my mom’s family. Cousins, Aunts, Uncles and of course Grandma and Grandpa Yoder. Growing up in Indiana also meant weekend visitors in the form of all those mentioned. Whether we were in Indiana or Ohio, when we were together we had a fine time that was not soon forgotten.

I have good memories of going to Ohio for weekends. There were always get-togethers in someone’s backyard, a cabin or a park. After much good food, the old(er) ones would sit and talk while the young ones played old gray wolf or kick the can. Cousins were the best playmates and after we had worn ourselves out we would lie in the grass and catch fireflies after dark.

As we got older, married, and moved around, our times together grew less. We got together on occasions, but it was never long enough. Talk kept circling about having an actual reunion, but it just never happened.

And then Tristan died.

Our cousins came through the line at his viewing and said, “We knew him, but we hadn’t seen him much the last few years, we feel like we really didn’t know him well anymore.” I hated that they missed that part of his life after spending so much time together growing up. They missed the years of him with his wife and kids and knowing his big heart and laughing conversations.

So, when I heard talk about getting together for a weekend, I was happy.
And a good weekend it was.

Yoder Reunion (1)

Yoder Reunion (2)

There was a host of conversations, catching up on life, renewing friendships, amazement at children grown up and new babies to meet.
Lots of memories were discussed and laughed over. Early morning wake up calls with Aunt Irene, sleeping in Grandma’s basement, cookie baking days, visiting Grandpa in the nursing home and much more. We listened to the Aunts and Uncles recall memories from when they were young and all that happened back in their days. The conversations were rich and full of life.

Yoder Reunion (3)

Yoder Reunion (4)

We have spread around from here to there across the globe so there were immediate families reuniting and much catching up to do. There were only a few missing and miss them we did.

Yoder Reunion (5)

The children had a blast. Train rides, bounce houses and games galore, they were never lacking for something to do.

Yoder Reunion (6)

Yoder Reunion (7)

Yoder Reunion (8)

Yoder Reunion (9)

Dave’s children went all out with the games. There was something for everyone and much, much laughter from everyone watching.

Yoder Reunion (10)

Yoder Reunion (11)

There were two teams and one person from each team competed against each other to see who completed each task the fastest.

Yoder Reunion (12)
The kids and big kids rolled and bounced around in these things for hours.
I heard tell that it made for some very sore muscles the next few days.

Yoder Reunion (13)

Yoder Reunion (14)

In between all the activities, there was a constant display of food. If there is one thing I missed from the Yoder gene pool, it would be the love of all things chocolate. Madison made chocolate cupcakes filled with chocolate mousse and frosted with chocolate ganache. They were well received.

Yoder Reunion (15)

Yoder Reunion (16)

Family, the ones you grow up with, share laughter and sorrow, heart and soul, and a bond of memories. No matter where you live or how long it’s been, when you gather again, the bond is still there.

Yoder Reunion (17)

Version 3

On Saturday night we scrolled through a huge assortment of photos my cousin Melody put together. It spanned the time from Grandpa at CPS to the youngest of the grandchildren and even great-grandchildren.

Yoder Reunion (18)

Yoder Reunion (19)

Yoder Reunion (20)

It was a great weekend, but we missed Tristan fiercely. He would have loved it, the conversations, the games, reuniting with family and just being a part of it all. He would have been the first one up in the morning and the last one to bed at night, I am sure. I missed him all weekend.

If you have family, gather them together and spend time with each other.
They are a blessings many do not have.

Of Life

Another Saturday post.
It’s quiet here right now.
2 are sleeping.
1 just needs her afternoon nap,
the other is sleeping off a slumber party
and trying to recover from another week of sickness.
I’m hoping we finally kicked that bug.

blog 12-13-14 (1)
{guiltily hiding}

I am suppose to be studying my Sunday School lesson.
Instead I’m chatting with you guys.
Tomorrow morning when I wish I had studied more,
I’ll be counting on you to help me out.
My husband thinks I over study.
Guess we’ll try his approach.

~~~~

blog 12-13-14 (2)
Last Sunday night we celebrated Liam’s first birthday.
We blessed him, and his parents, with many noisy toys.
If you are new here, read this post and you’ll
know why my inner happiness was just
off the charts to hear that Liam’s Mother
could sing the annoying turtle song in it’s entirety.

~~~

blog 12-13-14 (4)
We forked over a chunk of our salary here because of
swollen, red, hurting, shins from no apparent injury.
The Dr was of no help but things seem to be improving.
Thank you Jesus.

~~~

blog 12-13-14 (7)

While 2 of my kids were playing game after game, I over hear…
Player 1: “Let me interview you….”
(holds out pretend mic)
“So. How does it feel to loose so many games? I wouldn’t know.”
Player 2: {silence!}
Interview (and game) officially over.

If you are wondering, it wasn’t the 2 kids in the picture.

blog 12-13-14 (8)
I became all home-ecky Becky and made a batch of play dough.
It was actually easy to make and turned out pretty good.
If you can overlook the mess on the floor, it entertains for hours.

~~~~

blog 12-13-14 (5)
“Do it myself”
are the new all time favorite words!
Not just for pudding. For everything.

~~~

“Mom, I know that wasn’t Grandma or Sarita on the phone because you had your person voice on.”
“Huh?”
“Yeah, your person voice. Now don’t get me wrong you are nice and sweet, but when someone calls, you use this ‘person voice’ that is all really, really nice and stuff.”

Alrighty then, I guess the next time you call,
be expecting my gruff and tough parenting voice.

~~~~

blog 12-13-14 (6)
If you are ever out on the job and don’t know where to lay your hammer,
try this.

~~~~

blog 12-13-14 (9)
Sometimes you just have to sit down right where you are,
and hold them.

~~~

Give Away coming one of these weeks.
Check back.

(this ^^ was just to make sure I get it done) :/

Be blessed!

Of Family

Family time. Reunion.
Fun. Laughing. Talking. Arguing.
Being with those who know you best.
That’s what this last weekend was.

We were together with my Dad’s family and had a grand time.
My aunt organized games, Olympics and all kinds of stuff to do.
I think the oldest to the youngest enjoyed it.
Well, among the youngest there may have been a bear or two that didn’t have a good day, but for the most part, we all had fun.

Have you ever went on a photo scavenger hunt?
We divided up into groups and each group had a paper with a list of photos and points to go with each one. Team with the most points, wins. We had 2 hours to go wherever we pleased, take photos from the list and be back to see who won and check out each others photos.

A few of the things listed to photograph were…
Your entire group jumping into the air… 400pts
(epic failure on our team! It’s a lot harder then it looks)
Picture of your entire group in a bathtub…200pts
A pyramid of 5 people…300pts
Buy $5 of gas.  A photo of the pump and a receipt…700pts
(these days, that is hard too!)

Entire team in front of an ice cream truck licking ice cream…1,500pts
Spell a word with your bodies…200pts

Team members being pushed in a shopping cart… 500pts per person.
(we just asked this random guy to push us) 🙂
Team member leading another member crawling with a leash thru the store… 700pts
(trust me, we were not in the middle of the store for these photos) 🙂

She had 20 things on the list and we missed one of the highest pointers.
Picture of someone inside a police car with handcuffs on… 1,500pts
A team member eating a doughnut with a policeman in uniform… 600pts
(where are the cops when you need them?) 🙂

It was fun racing around town and finding all these things.
Try it sometime.

After lunch we had Stoll Olympics.
We all had to pin our Olympic tags on our clothes to show which team we were on.

We threaded a spoon on a string thru our clothes to the end of the line and then all the way back.
We emptied buckets of water with a sponge.
Threw all our shoes in a pile and raced to see who got theirs all back on first.

There were wheelbarrow races, much laughter and fun.

A side note, when you’re in the wheelbarrow and your husband is blindfolded, it doesn’t do any good to point and yell, “GO that way!!” 🙂

The 2 little brown bears of the weekend.
Dakota was recovering from a 24 hr sickness and just wasn’t himself.
(not that he ever likes crowds of people)
Bryce was just being a normal 11 month old and wanted his mom.
We’ll blame it on his teeth. That can always be the problem till they get all their teeth. 🙂

We ended the day celebrating 60 years with Dad.

Lots of cousins and friends came to join the family and I think he enjoyed it. 🙂

It was a full fast and fun weekend but I’m glad we took the time to go.
Family time is always worth it.