For our “favorite” cousin๐Ÿ˜œ

I tend to get “approval” so to speak when I put pictures of other people in my blog or when I talk about them. But my cousin, who came with her family to visit us this weekend, well, before I could ask anything, she said she drove six hours to see me so I had better have a blog about her!๐Ÿ˜œ

That alone should give you an idea of what my cousin Julie is like! Which by the way…this is a picture she said does not need to end up on FB…careful what you wish for cousin๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜œ  My sister Michelle, Julie and I had been planning this for quite some time. Our farm that has cows and pigs and ponies…and now cats, was to be a part of Julie’s vacation when they all came back home to Des Moines to visit their families. And the fact that it was always me, Michelle and Julie together growing up, I knew this was going to be an amazing time! Finally our chance after 8 months, for the 3 of us to be together again! And of course having our spouses and kids together was going to be a lot of fun too! 

With any plans that we make though, everyone knows that the plans are tentative depending on my health. I am extremely grateful that Michelle and Julie understand how my condition can flare up at any time, resulting in me being the one to back out and have to reschedule. 

We had all been planning and looking so forward to this for around 5 or 6 months and then just over 3 weeks ago, my back began giving me issues…and has only gotten worse. I was keeping in touch with the girls so they had been fully aware of how miserable I was and my sister had even seen my misery as I tried walking and sitting at our grandma’s funeral the previous week. 

Of course Julie and Michelle gave me every option to back out, assuring me that we could plan another weekend. But when the talk of rescheduling surfaced I will admit that I had cried and become extremely frustrated. I have been missing out on so much this summer and I don’t want these plans to slowly become no more. I’m so sick of my health causing me to lag behind.

But at the same time, I was absolutely miserable. Will it be any fun for them?  While I have made some improvements with being able to sit a little longer, my leg pain was so severe that I could barely walk from one room to the other. I constantly had to be changing positions.

So one day we were all messaging each other and I finally admitted that I was struggling with walking and sitting but at the same time it would be nice to make sure they still came because I knew the three of us together would be a time filled with laughter. But I wasn’t able to entertain the way I normally would by making a bunch of food and planning outside games for the kids etc., let alone I would probably need to be on the floor!

And just like that, instead of talking about rescheduling, it was Michelle and Julie taking over and making sure we had everything we would need to have a fun night. There was no more discussion about them not coming, but them breaking up the responsibility of who was bringing what and them saying if I had to be on my back so be it they could still visit. They were doing whatever they could to make this the least amount of work and stress on me!!

So now, even if I didn’t want them to come…that was no longer an option! And I loved that! Haha!

So, once again I cried!๐Ÿ˜œ๐Ÿ˜ It’s so hard making plans after they have been cancelled once before and I felt like if I didn’t go through with this weekend who knew when I would really see Julie and when the three of us would have a chance to be together again. And I am so glad it happened.

Everybody got here and did our quick catch up and visits and hung out a little bit. The kids instantly clicked with each other which I was of course happy to see. And once Skyler arrived it was time for a ranger ride…    …while the parents started the cooking! Everyone was beyond helpful and did most of the preparing and set up for me…  

The guys got the grills ready to go and apparently Tim’s back must be out too because well…not sure how much he helped with the cooking!๐Ÿ˜œ   

While Jeff and Ryan cooked…Tim gave Skye a break from entertaining the kids…    And even though a lot of my time was spent stretched out on the floor in the living room, I did my best to mingle while everyone got things ready for dinner. Of course with the kitchen floor so hard, I maintained my little bit of comfort by sitting on the rug in the dining room. And yes, Julie and Michelle had to get a picture…I’m so glad they find comedy in my pain!๐Ÿ˜ณ๐Ÿค•๐Ÿ˜

 Regardless, the food turned out amazing, which Julie must’ve been in charge of desserts because our grandma and my favorite aunt Barb sent delicious cakes and bars!๐Ÿ˜œ Everyone even cleaned up my kitchen afterwards! 

And then the real visiting took place outside in the beautiful summer evening while the kids ran around playing with the ponies and chasing lightning bugs!  

Julie also brought glow rings which seemed to be a hit with all of the little ones! 
But of course one ended up in the tree and out of all the adults…it was my husband…the one who is deathly afraid of heights…that got out the ladder and pool stick to get them back down! And what would a trip to the farm be without doing chores?!   The next morning we had the kids do chores and Ryan went out for donuts…win win for us!๐Ÿ˜   

It was a great night filled with good food, gut aching laughs and new memories!!

It’s so crazy to see the circle of life in our kids…it also shows how old we are getting!๐Ÿ˜ฌ Julie, Michelle and I have always been close. And while we have all moved and maybe not stayed in touch as often as we would have liked, we could always see each other and pick right back up from where we left off! And no matter what…we always laugh!! Michelle has lived in Colorado and Julie has lived in Kansas but I know these two would do anything for me! My sister and cousin…   They’ve been there to listen to me, cry with me and most important to make me laugh especially on days when I didn’t feel much like doing so! And this weekend it was so cool to see our kids playing together and reminding us of our own childhood days!!

I am not always able to travel or get out to see people, not just because of my health, but with Tim’s job too so I am very appreciative that these girls went out of their way to come see us! 

Tim and I are also not ones to ask for help and we often times try to tell people no, not because we don’t appreciate it but because everybody has their struggles and hardships and we truly do feel blessed to have it as good as we do! We are so grateful for the amazing family and friends that we have and look forward to paying all of the blessings we have received, forward!! 

Thank you Michelle and Jeff and Julie and Ryan for hanging out with us! It was a nice break from the pain and craziness of life…even if I was the butt of your jokes all night…no pun intended!๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜ฌ Love you all and can’t wait to do this again!!


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