Wednesday, April 11, 2012

A Weekend of Easter Celebrations with Family {Part One}.

I have all sorts of fun photos to share from our Easter weekend.  We were fortunate that Jody's work schedule required him to be in the San Antonio and Dallas area last week leading up to the Easter weekend.  And because so, it allowed Noah and I to travel with him and then head on to our hometown in East Texas and stay for the weekend to celebrate this special holiday with our extended family.

The first day we were there Jody went fishing with his dad and so I enjoyed spending some quality time with my mom.  I always love getting to come home and spend time with her.  I will readily admit that I sometimes struggle with the fact that we live so far away from our extended family.  It's hard living 10 hours away from everyone.  Now that I am a mother myself---I have a deeper appreciation for my own mother now and the advice she so willingly shares with me on motherhood.  She sacrificed so much of her time and energy to raise me and my brothers.  And now as a grandmother---she gives so much love and time to her grandchildren.  I admire her for raising four kids who were so close in age.  What a blessing she is to me.

 In the afternoon, we took Noah and his cousins out to visit my grandmother, Nanny, at the nursing home where she is currently living.  She's been struggling with her health for some time now, so I'm always grateful when we have a chance to get together for a visit.  The nursing home was hosting an easter egg hunt while we were there and so Nanny was looking forward to watching all her great-grandbabies hunt for eggs.  When we arrived, she was waiting for us out on the front porch.  It was a beautiful, sunny day--perfect for an Easter egg hunt and an outdoor visit.  My grandmother has always been such a strong presence in both mine and my brother's lives. She has a deep love for the Savior and her faith is strong in the gospel.  This has always resonated within me and many times in my youth it helped strengthen my own testimony. She has always been there for me when I needed her---provided a listening ear and a patient heart when I've needed to vent my concerns and worries about life.  I will always be grateful for her love, friendship and example.  She's been through a great deal of heartache and loss in her life and yet through it all---she has never lost her faith or love for the Savior.  This has always struck a chord in my heart---especially as I have faced my own heartaches with infertility---when I am feeling down about it, I always think of my dear grandmother and how she never lost her faith despite the pain she has suffered in this life---it inspires me to strive to have the same level of deep, abiding faith in the Lord when quietly facing my own personal trials and adversities.

It warmed my heart on this day to watch my dear grandmother quietly smile and watch her great-grandchildren play and laugh together.  She loves them all so very much.  And yet, it is still a little heartbreaking for me to watch her because I know that her time here on earth is limited.  

My youngest brother, Jeff, with Nanny and his son, Marcus.  

Noah and his cousins Beck and Ava were super excited when the Easter bunny finally came outside to say hi to everyone.  We then waited anxiously for the Easter egg hunt to begin.

Mom and I were having fun hanging out with the kids....

It finally came time to line the kids up and start the hunt....

Afterwards, we let the kids enjoy eating some of their candy while visiting with Nanny on the front porch of the nursing home.  I could tell she enjoyed watching the kids and listening to them chit-chat about the Easter bunny.

We really enjoyed our visit with Nanny....I'm so happy that it worked out that we could be there to share this special time with my grandmother and nieces and nephews. 

Noah quickly devoured all of his Easter chocolate....yikes!

After leaving the nursing home, we headed over to the church for another fun Easter celebration and egg hunt.   This is the church (or as we call it in the Mormon faith---"the ward"--which is the assigned congregation we attend based on where we live) "family" that I grew up in--so it always feels like I've come "home" when I come in town to visit and attend church there.  It's as if the old friends and I all pick up our conversations where we last left off.  Jody and I often talk how the church members in our hometown are like family to us--we've known them our entire lives.

There were yummy hot dogs to munch on before the Easter egg hunt began....

Mom and I were chit-chatting as we waited in line to get some dogs for the kids...

Ava and Noah finally took our advice and sat down for a few minutes to eat their hot dogs together....

Cousins Beck and Noah were having fun playing in the field together....

We enjoyed getting to visit with so many of our dear friends from our hometown while there...

The face painting and art table seemed to be a hit with all the kids...

It was finally time to start our 2nd Easter egg hunt of the day (whew-wee!), but before beginning, we gathered all the children together for a quick picture.  

Our dear family friend, Tiffany, in the green blouse above, she was there to oversee and organize the event and get the kids started on their fun Easter egg hunt....she is an amazing wife, mom and woman--a great example to all in our hometown of what it means to be a true disciple of Christ.  It was great seeing her and getting to visit with her while we were there.

My brother Brent, and his wife, Sheri, who now live in our hometown again.  It was nice getting to spend some time with them while there.

Uncle Brent being silly with the nieces and nephews....they love their Uncle Brent!

Noah was a little sad to have to say good-bye to the Easter bunny...

And then it was time to sort through the candy and dig in....

We had a wonderful first day in our hometown spending time with our family and friends celebrating the Easter holiday.  A great big thank you to my dear mom and brother Jeff for lugging around the camera and taking all of these pictures.  :-)  I look forward to sharing more pictures from our fun weekend in later posts.



  1. Oh, how I hate that I missed seeing y'all!

  2. Me too, darn it! Hopefully next time we can hang out. :-)


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