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Friday Update: 10/2/09

Wow has fall officially arrived. Today it barely hit 50 and is drizzly and windy. It feels more like late November than the 2nd of October. It’s an unusual cold snap and has us all in the mood for soups and spaghetti and things simmering on the stove all day. In fact I already have plans to make homemade spaghetti tomorrow with tomatoes I froze from my garden this summer! Matt and I have been talking about it this week and how nice it will be to have spaghetti on ‘Football Saturday’. Oh how we love our ‘Football Saturdays’! I’ve come down with a nasty cold and after a couple of busy weeks, we’re really looking forward to a very low key tomorrow!! I can’t wait!

Last weekend we traveled out to the Chicago area for a Karwoski family reunion. All of Matt’s aunts, uncles, and cousins were making the trek from here there and everyone to congregate in their old neighborhood. Matt and I thought long and hard about whether or not we’d go, but ultimately couldn’t miss out on the opportunity for us all to get together – something we’ve never ALL been able to do since I’ve been a part of the family anyway. We spent Friday evening at the hotel restaurant talking, laughing (mostly at our pitiful waitress (‘Shaw’), and just hanging out; all the ‘kids’ at one end of the big table and the ‘adults’ at the other end. Now and then I’d glance down at Matt’s Grandparents and catch a glimpse of that Karwoski twinkle that we all know and love. I could see they were both just swollen with pride and joy at being surrounded by their boisterous brood. They were in their element all weekend and it was worth all the trouble to go, just for that…just for them.

Saturday us ‘kids’ took a cab into Chicago to spend the day at the Aquarium. Little did we know that calling ahead for a cab and requesting a van to seat 7 adults and a wheelchair would deliver a minivan that seats 7 adults and a wheelchair…INCLUDING the cabbie! I mean, seriously…who includes the driver!?!? Not wanting to make a fuss, we decided to go with it…I’d squeeze in BETWEEN the middle seats. So we all piled in and I sat sort of squished between the seats, half suspended all the way downtown. It was all good though – we saved time and money and anyone who knows me knows that I’m all about saving time and money!

We had a great time at the Aquarium, taking in the sites and trying to capture the wonder of underwater life on camera…which is nearly impossible to do through glass. Afterwards we walked downtown and found a little cafĂ© on Michigan Ave for lunch. We ate outside on the patio, tickled that the rain had held off and we could walk and sit outside and enjoy the city from the streets. That night all the family congregated back a the ‘Joint’…John’s Buffet in Winfield. It is a restaurant/bar that Matt’s Grandpa and his brothers had grown up running with their father…and has been passed down through the generations and is still Karwoski run. We had our set up in the back room where we could spread out and visit. We enjoyed another nice meal together, and surprised Grandma with an early b-day cake. Since she will be 88 in November, and all of her kids were there, they decided to celebrate early. She was very surprised, and oh the gleam in her eye! Whenever I see those Karwoski kids all together I can’t help but smile…they are a special bunch…to be that close as siblings. I’d say Grandma and Grandpa Karwoski did a heck of a job raising those kids. I love them all – truly.
We talked on our way home about how we wished we’d had more time to visit with everyone…the weekend just went by so quickly. But we were both so very glad that we went. Time like that with family is so precious. It was a reminder of how blessed we are by our amazing families.

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