I got back from my trip to KY less than an hour ago. I'm tired. I have to unpack--or at least get what I need out of my suitcase in order to function tonight and tomorrow. I'm not the only one who does that, right? So anyway, here's a list of the highlights of my trip. I might go into more detail later, or I might get caught up in work and life and forget to blog again. Who knows?
-Got to watch the Cards win game six of the World Series. I listened to the game on the way up in my schmancy rental car, and I got home just in time (as I thought) to see the Cards lose. But they didn't lose. They came back and beat the Rangers in an exciting turn of events that can only be described as extremely well-played baseball. And I got to share that with my family!
-Got to see my extended family and celebrate the marriage of my grandfather, as well as welcome new people into my family. ...and I thought my family was big before. I loved my grandmother. She was one of the most loving people in my life. She taught me the importance of family; she taught me that there's always room for more people to love. And I miss my grandmother and think about how she and my grandfather were married for 60 years, but I can't be sad that my grandfather chose to remarry. The lady who is now his wife is beautiful and precious. She's not my grandmother and she doesn't have to be. She's who she is, and my grandfather loves her, and so do I.
-Got to see about six of my younger cousins who have recently had, are about to have, or are currently having birthdays. Three have turned seven, one is about to turn nine, one is about to turn twelve (I remember visiting the hospital when she was BORN...what happened?), and one is about to turn ONE. I love being part of a large extended family with lots of kids. They're all so wonderful. And I loved seeing their parents and grown up siblings, too. I even got to see one of my aunts who I rarely ever see, so that was an unexpected blessing.
-As the wedding reception died down, I saw that my dad was sitting on the couch watching the last game of the World Series. I sat with him a bit, then got up to be social, but I went back later when I realized it was the last inning. And I sat there with my daddy and watched the Cards win the 2011 World Series. I know this sounds weird, but that was worth the whole trip to me. I'm not a "daddy's girl," but I love my dad. He's the one that got me interested in baseball, in the St. Louis Cardinals. So sharing that moment was just special. That brief experience is something I'm going to remember always.
-My sister and her family couldn't make it to the wedding reception, and they live 4 hours away from my parents. So my wonderful mom offered to drive me up those 4 hours (and back) in one day so I could see my nieces and nephew (the birthday boy). It was a quick trip, but so worth it. The kids were so excited to see me, and I enjoyed spending a few hours with them and their awesome parents. I'll remember that always, too.
-I really remember very little from the drive up to KY (I drove about half of it in the dark and I just kind of went on auto-pilot), but today's drive down was beautiful. The sunshine was golden and the leaves were beautiful. Autumn is here. Change is coming.
And life is good.
I'm glad to be back, though it feels sort of surreal. I'm thankful I got to go. This very short trip will live in my memories for a long time.