About 3 years ago, I talked my sister into a camping trip after a family reunion. She said yes and then of course fell in love. Camping is something I think we will do as sisters/family every summer from now on. This time Will & I loaded up the kayaks so that we could take B on her first kayak adventure. We made it to Lake Murray and stopped the Lake Murray store where I ran into Mike Hamilton, a guy I think SO highly of. (this guy & his family let me live with them for months after my mom died, at that time I was feeling very lonely because my dad's work schedule consumed all of his time and I was left with my thoughts of depression and being alone for long periods of my time. But this family saved me from self destruction and that depression that haunted me every afternoon when I got out of school, I will never be able to put into words how incredibly thankful I am for them) I caught up with Mike and then we headed off to pick out our campsite. Shortly after we arrived, the Arnold's showed up. We all set up camp then just set and visited a little bit. We decided to head to the lake to get the kayaks out. I loved kayaking with B. She loved it, and wanted to control the paddle the entire time. As we were strolling through the water I began to think about how much she has grown up and how lucky I am to have her as my niece. She teaches me a lot and she's just a little girl. I love to see her curiousity and fearlessness take over, she was bound and determined to make her aunt teetay let go of that paddle so she could steer us around. She had no fear of our kayak flipping over, I watched her big blue eyes wonder at the fluffy clouds in the sky and watch the boats pass us at the waves got bigger then she ran her itty bitty hands through the water and then she would pour water on my head to make sure I was staying cooled off. She is so sweet. After kayaking, we had wanted to fish (we'll do that next time) but instead roasted hot dogs and had smores for dessert. We all set around the fire and stared at it, while passing around the iPod to choose the song we wanted to hear. We had a lot of country and the occasional destiny's child song that my sister would throw in to the mix. (speaking of music, I just purchased the Of Monsters and Men as well as the Mumford & Son's albums and I love them both, if you like them, you should get those albums)
Shobey decided to take a swim & adventure by himself, crazy kid is a messpot
love me some armadillos
love me some babertz
Favorite Moment: When I asked B if she liked camping, she nodded her head yes, then looked at me and said, yeah, i LOVE camping. See she gives camping a very serious thumbs up!
Over the weekend, I did find out some heart hurtin' news, I found out that my uncle Donnie passed away. I remember going to my aunt & uncle's house while growing up, Uncle Donnie would always let me play his handheld texas hold em' game and he would make me hot links with mustard. He's probably the reason I even began liking anything spicy. He made my cousin this gocart that had that was red & white (Sulphur Bulldog colors) with a bulldog on the seat of the gocart and we would drive that baby all over their chunk of land. He always had this joke he told me, here's how it goes: You know what my name is? Me: What's your name? Him: Puddin' tane, you ask me again, I'll tell you the same. I remember him always telling me this one, and I would die laughing every time. I'll miss him, he was a great man. My cousin, sister & I talked about the grieving process, where my cousin stated she understood now how it felt to feel that emptiness of what it's like to lose a parent. We reminisced on old memories, talked about how we struggled and even became a little closer having that talk between just us cousins. Loss is hard people and I wish that we (any of us on earth) didn't have to deal with the pitted stomach feeling that someone you love and care about so deeply is gone, maybe if you are reading this, you could just send up a prayer for the people in my family while they are dealing with this kind of heartbreak.
Found this oldie but goodie of my mom when she was younger, she is so beautiful
This is our "yeah, so, we love cupcakes, what? " look
Love this baby!
I think in life, there are signs, kisses from the Universe, that tell us (especially when we desperately need to be told) that everything is going to be okay, that we're on the right path, that we are surrounding ourselves with the right people and that we're gonna be alright. This weekend after talking to my cousin, bonding with my sister, seeing my aunt go through the motions but observing her heart break, my heart was hurtin' and I felt myself overwhelmed with emotions. One of my friends invited me over for dinner last night, and I needed that. I don't know that she knew how much just having a little bit of normalcy around my regular weekend crew meant. I indulged in the most delicious enchiladees, had small talk while enjoying the amazing weather on the back patio, and got a lot of snuggling from Tripp. I think dogs can always sense when you have an aching heart, and so I believe that's why mr Tripp was giving me lots of hugs & kisses. Thanks Tripp, Emily & Jarrin (and char of course), for just having me over, you guys are good people.
So after a weekend of really high highs and some low lows, I'm simply thankful for family and good friends and live experinces in general. Until next time folks, have a great week!