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Ode to My Family

Oh my-lanta I love my family. We spent the long Thanksgiving weekend at my parents’ house in Oklahoma; me and Matt, and Hope, Chad, Meghan, and Matthew. The house was full…literally. Full of our junk exploding all over the house, full of the sounds of the kids chasing each other (and Buddy) around, full of food overflowing the fridge and countertops, full of laughter, and football, and bodies strewn over couches and recliners. Ahhh…it was a wonderful weekend with my family.

I can’t say enough how much I value weekends like this. While I hate the fact that we have to travel so far to spend time with my parents, there is a certain something special about the fact that we all descend on their house at the same time and stay for several days. I actually enjoy waking up early to find my parents, still in their pajamas, visiting over their morning caffeine choices (Mom with her coffee and Dad with his Diet Coke) and listening to Meghan and Matthew as they chatter about this and that (the wild turkeys running around the front yard, or the awesome game of Operation they played the night before, or how much they love the color blue). The smell of fresh made blueberry muffins wafts throughout the house. It is warm and cozy and still dark outside. Slowly we all make our way out of bedrooms and congregate in the kitchen over breakfast. Soon the house is rumbling with all of our voices. If my parents lived closer, surely I would miss out on mornings like this. No matter what we’re doing, we are mostly together…and I am reminded how much I love, love, love when we are all together.

I realize not all families are as close-knit as mine, and surely I take them for granted. But on this long, Thanksgiving weekend I can’t help but be thankful for them all. How can I resist when Matthew asks me for a BIG squeeze? How can I not smile when Meghan insists she sit next to Aunt Emmy at every meal and in the car?
How do I not love my sister for lacing up her tennis shoes and coming out with me for a little workout with me on Thanksgiving afternoon? How can I not laugh and giggle like a little kid as I sit in a tiny trailer sandwiched between Meghan and Matthew while Dad pulls us along his ‘trail’ with his four wheeler?
And how can I not hug my Mom multiple times as we putter around the kitchen together baking pies and preparing a feast for all of us to savor?

To say I love my family is an understatement – undoubtedly I am most incredibly blessed with mine. My parents celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary in early October. FORTY years. Amazing. Those 40 years have had their ups and downs, their trials, and their blessings. Through all that life has handed them, my parents have shown us what it means to be committed…to each other, and to their faith. They have shown us a true and solid example of what marriage should be. It hasn’t always been easy and I know it. They’ve had their rough patches. But they’ve endured…together. And whenever I visit them, I am suddenly a child again…no matter how old we all are. I smiled Sunday morning when I walked out and found my Dad had made pancakes for the kids for breakfast. In my family, this was the backup supper Dad always made for us when Mom had to work. I absolutely love that he made them for Meghan and Matthew…and Matt, for that matter. Dad making pancakes…something about it is so special.

Sunday morning Hope and Chad headed home and Matt and I had some quiet time with just Mom and Dad. We helped put Christmas lights up on the outside of the house – something I’ve always loved doing with them. It was chilly and windy – but we bundled up and out we went – Matt, Mom, Dad, and I. I couldn’t help but think of all the times we’d put up lights on their house….whether it was my childhood home, or one of the houses they’ve lived in since then. We’ve always enjoyed doing it together…and it just feels right. Later that evening they built a fire in the fireplace – the first of the season and we all warmed up. Mom popped popcorn on the stove for supper and we all cozied up to watch some football. It was the perfect end to a wonderful weekend and I just felt full of gratitude for my family.
Imperfect as we all may be – we fit together perfectly and I wouldn’t change them. God knew what he was doing when he knit together the Boston family and I thank Him for blessing me by being part of it.


Emily said…
I pray my kids feel just the way you do someday! Home should always be a sanctuary, where you can be yourself, soak up the love,...and eat Dad's pancakes.
Matt and Emily said…
I KNOW your girls will feel the same doubt about it!
Hope said…
Ah, Sis, what a great post. And I feel the same. How wonderful is it to be in our 30's and still love hanging out with our parents!! And yes, we all love you and Matt as well!! :)

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