Saturday, July 5, 2014

Proclaim the Good Things!

"Give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name; make known among the nations what he has done, and proclaim that his name is exalted. Sing to the Lord, for he has done glorious things; let this be known to all the world."  --Isaiah 12:4-5

Over the last year as I've resumed a "normal" life I've tried to be deliberate in thanking God for the ability to do "little things."  There are so many activities that I take for granted.  My entry today is my public "THANK YOU" to God for allowing a great trip this summer.

Several months ago my dad's side of the family started planning a Reavis Family Reunion.  We all decided we wanted a repeat of the 2010 reunion and decided we should meet up at my dad's house in Pueblo West, Colorado.  My dad and his wife worked for months preparing for the event.  As for my family of 4, we wavered back and forth as to whether we should all go (Jonathan would drive) or if Jonathan should hang back due to work obligations (the kids and I would fly).  Unfortunately, Jonathan didn't get to go.  This was the first time the kids had ever flown and for the record, I am a scaredy-cat when it comes to flying (although I NEVER let my kids on to this).

I took a chance and booked late flights going and returning, realizing the later the flight the more opportunity for delays.  Our outgoing trip was booked like this:
Monday 6/23
- leave Monroe at 4:10 pm CDT
- arrive DFW at 5:20 pm CDT
- leave DFW at 6:25 pm CDT
- arrive Colorado Springs at 7:10 pm MDT
- dad picks us up and we drive 1 hour to his house
(An awesome 5 hours door-to-door)

Our outgoing trip ended up like this:
- leave Monroe at 6:31 pm CDT (2 hours late)
- arrive DFW at 7:36pm CDT (missed our connecting flight, which left the gate at 7:36)
- leave DFW on alternate flight at 11:50 pm CDT (4 hours after arriving at DFW)
- arrive Colorado Springs at 1:30 am MDT (drug poor dad out in the wee hours)
- dad drives 1 hour to his house and we arrive at 2:35 am MDT (3:30 "our" time)

Welcome to flying kids!!!!!  Beau at 1:00 am in-flight:

But, you know what?!?!  I was able to endure TWELVE hours of a travel nightmare BY MYSELF with the kids in-tow!!!!  I could not have done that two years ago and probably not even last year.  THANK YOU God for this "normal" life!  I had moments of frustration and sleep-deprived tears during those 12 hours but I wasn't nearly as bent out of shape as I would have been 3 years ago.  You know why?  Because 3 years ago, this would have been just a headache and a hassle.  Now, I realize that even attempting to travel is a blessing.

We had an awesome time while we were there.  I have a small family but it's still so much fun to reunite.  And although they're all Yankees and call coke "pop" I still love them dearly.  Here are some of my favorite pics:
Sunset from my dad's back porch

This looks more Redneck Reunion than a bunch of Yankees... as we overflow the hotel hot-tub.

My cousin, Jody the artist, designed the shirts with caricatures of my dad and 2 aunts.
Love the warning at the bottom, "Approach with Caution: Armed with Devilish Good Looks and Hilarity"

Beau on top of Pike's Peak (elevation 14,000 feet) with my cousin's kids.  I sat that one out!

My step-sister, Holly, with her identical twin boys Gareth & Conall (who are 10 months younger than Beau & Lydia).  This was the first time we got to meet the boys who are ADORABLE!!!!

Viva Colorado!

My cousin's kids: Wylder (17) who is 6'4" and Haiden (15) who is 5'9" - BEAUTIFUL teens inside and out

My lovely aunt Dee & aunt Sue

My beautiful cousins' wives, Marcee and Jane

My cousins Jody & Chuck

Chuck, Marcee and baby Kyan (CUTEST, HAPPIEST baby EVER!)

Our host & hostess, "Pops & Grandma"

Our homecoming trip was booked like this:
Sunday 6/29
- leave Colorado Springs at 1:50 pm MDT
- arrive DFW at 4:35 pm CDT
- leave DFW at 7:40 pm CDT
- arrive Monroe at 8:45 pm CDT
- Jonathan picks us up

Our homecoming trip ended up like this:
- leave Colorado Springs at 1:50 pm MDT (on time)
- arrive DFW at 4:35 pm CDT (on time)
- leave DFW at 9:30 pm CDT (2 hours late and 5 hours after arriving at DFW)
- arrive Monroe at 10:30 pm CDT
- A friend is on our flight; his wife picked him and us up and drove us home (they live in our neighborhood)

The kids and I rode the monorail around DFW while waiting.  Our sad "waiting" faces:

We had an awesome trip and I often thanked God throughout the week for my health and the health of my extended family to all be together.  I am very aware that only by God's grace was this trip possible.  In fact, it's only by God's grace that every moment of every day is possible.

Maybe you're traveling this summer.  If you are, I hope that you will take time to thank God for your health and resources that allow you that opportunity.  Enjoy the moments with your family and loved ones.

In other news:
It turned out that Jonathan not going to Colorado was a huge blessing in disguise.  Right in the middle of our vacation, Jonathan's dad had heart trouble.  Serious heart trouble.  Jonathan was able to join his mom and dad in their trip to Houston for my father-in-law's unplanned, unexpected bypass surgery.  And another praise - his surgery went great and he's having a fabulous recovery so far.  Jonathan got home two days ago and his dad should be home early next week.

For those who know that I set out to read my bible from Genesis to Revelation in July 2012, I have made it to Ephesians!  Pretty exciting!!!!

Beau & Lydia and their friends are working to raise money to purchase age-appropriate bibles for abused and neglected children through the Center for Families & Children's Christmas Project.  We are selling custom-designed t-shirts to raise money.  You can check out the shirts on our Facebook page.  If you're interested in helping our cause and buying a shirt, please let me know.
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