Stop worrying about the potholes in the road and celebrate the journey!
Some of my online buddies have been wondering what I’ve been up to so I thought I’d bring everyone up to date. The last few weeks have been wonderful – filled with family and friends and fun times. And best of all, the weather fully cooperated.
The last Sunday in July was a special family day – we welcomed our newest family member into our Christian community, celebrating his baptism with Eucharist at our parish church. All of the musicians and singers were my siblings and nieces and nephews. The presider was an old family friend who also presided at our wedding over 34 years ago. He’s starting to get forgetful as he referred to my brother and sister-in-law as “Neal and … his wife.” The important thing is that despite a few laughs, the baby is baptized.
Later, we had a party at our house. We had about 65 people and since there were many young children they were all in the pool – very nice on a hot day. It was pretty low stress and I feel like everyone had fun.
The first weekend in August, we celebrated our annual shindig, The Luau. Since we’re very likely moving next spring, this was our last one. When we first started these Luaus, we did them up pretty authentically with Hawaiian dishes and outfits and decorations. Over the years, we’ve made the food easier – everyone brings a dish and a beverage and use the pool a lot and have fun.
One year, because it was an Olympic year, we had the Luau ‘Lympics. My sister came up with a bunch of games and prizes that the kids could easily participate in. We had the Yankee Doodle Noodle Paddle, which had the kids racing across the pool on a pool noodle holding tiny American flags in their hands. There was the Bra Stroke, which had the kids wearing a gigantic bra while they swam across the pool. Thrift Shops always have tons of gigantic bras. There was Mom Calling and Gymnastics. We even had each family make a Family Flag and had an “Opening Ceremony” complete with the lighting of the Tiki Torch.
The next year was NOT an Olympic year so we had a “Talentless Show.” There is some rare video footage – some in Beta format, floating around. The kids always got into performing – came up with songs and skits and one year I even taught my niece and nephew to play “Fish and Whistle” by John Prine on the guitar so they could sing and play together.
The kids started to get really good as they matured. One year, they performed “All You Need IS Love” singing, playing guitars, horns cello, and sax. It was amazing I was very proud of them. The adults always performed too – I remember my sister-in-law, the mother of the little baptized baby mentioned earlier, being 7 months pregnant with the other love of my life singing Highway to Hell in her maternity bathing suit and then crying because she thought if her kids ever saw her like that, they’d be appalled. It really was a riot because she is so good and so funny and she was soooo pregnant.
This year was different. We set up the equipment and a family friend played guitar, and one of my brother’s played keyboards but his daughter played drums and two of my nephews played guitar and bass and mostly the other nieces and nephews sang. I played one song with my sister and niece but spent the entire night being totally entertained. The Last Luau
And then last weekend, we had the “Limoncello Live Music Fest” which started out being an excuse for a bunch of us at work to quit our day jobs and jam for an afternoon. The limoncello part of it came about because little Toni was going to Italy and couldn’t wait to drink the Limoncello. She explained it to some of my co-workers and said “You can make it, you know.” So we decided to try our hand at it. The day became a jam and limoncello taste-off.
When I get video for it, I’ll post here.
It was a load of fun and even though my husband almost ended up in a diabetic coma from too much sugar I wish we could do it again! Only with less sugar for him!