Saturday, May 17, 2008

A Family of Friends

George Burns once joked, "Happiness is having a large, loving, caring, close-knit family in another city." That is pretty much our situation but we look forward to visits from family like nothing else. After we got home from China, our extended families stayed away for a few a weeks, giving us some time to bond and recover, but they were all eager to come and meet the newest member of the family.

The past few weekends we welcomed grandmas, grandpas, cousins, aunts and uncles into our home and they have all welcomed our new son into their hearts.

First Phil's family came, easing Joshua into the idea of extended family by coming in smaller numbers and relatively calmer visits. Although shy at first, Joshua warmed up to them and charmed them each.

This past weekend my family came, bringing a handful of delightful cousins his own age as well as a bunch of grown-ups. There were six children under the age of six in our house - squealing, running, dancing, jumping off furniture, emptying cupboards and closets, and turning play shopping carts into catapults. Band-aids were doled out in large numbers, dolls were flying through the air - it was utter madness and it was a blast.

The real heroes of the day were my dad and Phil, who actually volunteered to watch all of the kids so the girls could attend a baby shower (because we are blessed with even more cousins on the way). We had a few enjoyable hours of peace and best of all, everyone was still alive when we came home!

At the end of the evening, I asked my three-year-old niece for a hug and she threw open her arms with gusto. "Get ready, Aunt Gigi," she cried, "because I'm gonna squeeze your head off!"

Grandparents In the House

...means free babysitting! Phil and I were able to have a nice dinner out (no cutting food up into little pieces) and see a movie. We knew Joshua wasn't quite ready to be left alone with Grammy and Poppa yet so we waited until after he went to bed, which of course meant that we were out waaayy past our own bedtime. It's hard to admit it, but we may just be getting too old to stay out until the wee hours of the morning.

We saw Prince Caspian, the latest installment in the Narnia series. One thing that always strikes me about the story is the way the characters struggle with being part of two different realities. At the beginning of the story, they live in a tedious and mundane world, but they know they belong to another world, one in which they are royalty and they fight in great battles.

It reminds me of what the apostle Paul said when he wrote to a group of Christians in this world: "Our homeland is in heaven, and we eagerly await our Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ." (Ph. 3:20)


Isaiah said...

Ang - I just love reading about your family. It's awesome that you are having a grand adventure with your kids and I also appreciate your sense of humor. Thanks for keeping us posted!


naimo family said...

wow, that niece of yours sure sounds like a violent little girl!

thanks for a fun day and big love to phil and dad for dealing with some serious energy from my son.