a note about family

Two weeks ago we flew to California to spend some time with my family at Mammoth Lakes--specifically Convict Lake (which isn't actually a part of Mammoth Lakes but is very close). The moment we drove up the hill, the familiar smell of pine permeated my senses. It brought back instant memories of childhood, and it felt like coming home. 

The week was a whirlwind, as most family vacations are, but I loved it. There were ups and downs, mostly ups, but I feel that the vacation was a success. My kids do too--they didn't shower for nearly a week so that's always a plus for them. ;) I think my favorite thing about the trip was watching Timmy interact with my parents and siblings and watching him discover nature. He stopped at every big rock, bush, stream, bridge, etc. to study it, and watching him stick his chubby little pointer out and flash me a big smile each time was so fun. It is amazing how much more I am enjoying this phase of childhood because I'm not pregnant. I'm usually couch bound at this point. 

It isn't easy for my family--small as it may seem--to get together. We are scattered throughout the country, we have different family situations, and many of us have crazy work schedules that we can't always connect. And when we do connect or get together, I'm afraid we don't always get along. We have such different personalities and life experiences that we often fumble situations up as we try to help each other. I keep thinking time will make things better, and in a lot of ways it has, but it is still difficult. I really just thought that becoming adults would help us see more clearly, but perhaps it's made a few things foggier. I don't know. 

I'm making this little reunion sound terrible, which it wasn't, but I don't want to pretend that everything was/is perfect in my family, especially since there is still so much growing that has to happen between every relationship. This reunion showed me areas where I can improve with my parents and siblings, and I hope to strengthen the loose ties I have now before we meet again. 

And no matter how I felt on the trip, my kids didn't notice a thing, which makes the whole vacation a success. They felt loved from everyone. My mom taught Mya to cast, and it made Mya's whole world because she felt so independent on the lake. V spent a special morning fishing with my dad, and I wish you could've seen her face when she spilled the secret that "grandpa bought me my own candy bar, and I didn't have to share." She lit up like the fourth of July. These are the things that matter most. I want my kids to love my family for all that they have to give, which happens to be a lot, and I know they do. 

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