Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Sister's Trip

I spent last weekend in sunny Tucson at a wonderful spa resort

celebrating my mother-in-law's 75th birthday

along with my 3 sister-in-laws.

We started off with pedicures the first day and massages the second.

Lots of good food, book reading, laughing, and birthday cake for breakfast.

Doesn't get much better than that!

We also "shopped" at a jewelry auction -- my mother-in-law

brought some of her old jewelry and a stack of play money

for each of us to use to bid on the jewelry.

If you ran out of play money, up the ante with a stick of gum!

My mother-in-law, E.C., is a young 75, taking the only two granddaughters on trips each summer and taking whichever grandson is 10 to grandma and grandson summer camp in New York for a week. She loves making memories with her children and grandchildren and having fun while she’s at it.

She’s the consummate gracious host, opening her home and pantry not only to family and friends, but to friends and family of friends and family as well!

She seems to never back down from entertaining—whether it’s at her home or at their vacation camp in Pagosa, she cooks and gives gifts and listens and plans entertainment, all with her big, beautiful smile!

All my siblings love E.C. because she’s made them feel like family. She hosted my family at her home the summer Dan and I were married and the next year invited us all to Pagosa together. The first question I always get from both E.C. and Marty whenever we’re together is, “Tell me about your family. Tell us about every single one!”

She has dedicated her life to family research and collecting and compiling family stories. She doesn’t just find names of who we’re related to, she find’s their stories as well and has made several books with photos and stories of their lives.

Jo Ellen, Dan's only sister, lives just down the street from us. She’s inherited her mother’s generous nature and regularly treats our family to Sunday dinners. Everyone always loves going to Jo's house and we all love Jo's cooking!

She gives each of the kids special attention and teases a bit too, which is the hallmark of a caring older sibling (as I, as the oldest of my siblings, can attest to). She has her PhD, always looks beautiful, loves to read, (we’ve enjoyed sharing our greatest reads together for years) and her two boys are a reflection of her caring. They’re kind, generous with compliments, also love to tease, and tons of fun.

Erin, originally from Boston, married Dan's oldest brother, Marty. She is creative in every way, which makes the year Erin has your name for Christmas extra special. She quilts beautifully (she's given me two), made me a messenger bag that I LOVE and receive compliments on wherever I go, turns wood bowls on a lathe and most recently started turning pen and pencil sets. In addition to everything else artistic, she's also a photographer and has an eye for what would make a fabulous photo--and then is able to capture it!

She’s also not afraid to take on home projects and remodeling and of course whatever she does turns out fantastic and artistic. She’s also athletic—played lacrosse on the men’s team in college--and is a dedicated sports mom (did you ever miss even one of your boys’ hockey games, Erin?)

Kristin married Dan's brother Duncan just 2 months after Dan and I got married.

I love listening to her tell a story--she's so animated and remembers the details that bring it to life! Her facial expressions and reenactments are hilarious and I never get tired of listening to her!

In the last few years she’s started vegetable gardening and knows how to grow anything and grows practically everything. For the last 2 years she’s kept 6 chickens and this year she butchered them. You can imagine how hard we laughed while she told that story!

She’s an artist and musician and has written plays and musicals for kids in her community and wrote the most beautiful song in honor of my in-laws 50th wedding anniversary.

I love having these women as my sisters and having E.C. as my second mother.

I am blessed!


Cindy said...

What a wonderful trip!! I loved hearing all about your in-laws. It sounds like you have an amazing family. Thanks for sharing!!

Katy said...

And they'll lucky to have you as a sister too!

Julie said...

Looks like fun! Love the idea of a jewelry auction with play money.