A truly memorable weekend. All my children and grandchildren were here, though Megan and her family stayed with Jordan. The boys and theirs stayed with me, and we all got together for lunch and a long visit Saturday, supper Saturday evening, and a special day today.
For lunch we went to the local deli, Carshon's, where we've been eating for forty years (well, I have, and Colin has for his 38 years--he thinks no trip home is complete without a visit to Carshon's). With all seven grandchidren, we were quite a troop. A nice older lady stopped to tell me how much she was enjoying watching all those beautiful children--lovely of her. I felt that some of the other patrons were looking a little askance at us, as though my kids were behaving like rabbits. After all, we do have three under one year! Saturday evening was barbecue on the porch, nicely cooled by a brief but heavy rain.
But today was really special. Five of the seven were dedicated at my church, University Christian. The Disciples don't baptize--they dedicate, parents pledging to raise their children in loving homes and guide them in matters of faith until each child is old enough to make a decision. Usually it's a covenant with the congregation, but Colin and Lisa, Megan and Brandon couldn't do that since they don't live here, so the church kindly arranged a special private ceremony in the chapel and tailored it to the circumstances--asking my children to pledge not only to support their children, but to support each other as brother and sister. Then, in a great departure from the usual tradition in the main sanctuary, the ministers invited family and friends to come join around the parents and children for support. It was wonderful to see some of my close friends there to support my children and grandchildren.
Afterwards there was picture taking and much visiting but we made it home where we had a brunch for about twenty people. No, it wasn't a Mothers' Day when I was pampered, for I worked hard--but I was catered to in my any ways and particularly felt surrounded by my children's love--and by the babies, some of whom spontaneously rushed up once or twice to hug me.
Tonight they've all gone home, the kitchen is clean, the laundry is almost done, the living room sports baby stuff for Jordan to take home, and my house is almost but not quite back to normal--a mixed blessing. I'll be finding a stray soft drink can here and crayon there for days and undoubtedly someone will have left something--I just haven't found it yet. But Scooby, Wynona, and I are back in our routine. Wynona is frankly relieved, but Scooby like me probably has mixed emotions--he has his house back, but he doesn't have the two buddies he shared his yard with all weekend.
My main emotion though is gratitude, for I am truly blessed and lucky with family.