Home Bear Lake a big, huge family cradled in their happy place

a big, huge family cradled in their happy place

by Shawni

(A lead-up to the 2022 reunion post)

This is my family:

I adore them.

And this is the “opening ceremony” of what we do each year when we gather together for our annual reunion:

(Noah and Kristi were in charge this year.)

But let’s back up for just a minute today before we dive into all that tomorrow (otherwise this will be too much of a marathon post…a lot happens at those reunions!).

For today I’ll just say this: there is something about these people, gathered in this spot…

The color of the lake is breathtaking, changing by the minute:

We bask in the sunsets like nobody’s business…

The chaos…

…and late-nights…

…ALWAYS complete with the sound of the ancient Bosche mixer (from our growing-up days) still doing what it does best: whipping up cookies.

(Now the younger generation has started to move up in the rankings of who bakes…)

But what I love most is that it’s a filled up with people who are interconnected and interwoven, even through the generations that have gone before (that the kids learn about at Grammie Camp). And that this place has had a large part of making us who we are.

Oh, it gets a little crazier each year, that is for sure.

More people. More babies. More coordination. More messes.

But oh! we walk along that old road lining the lake each night and count our blessings that we have each other. And that view. And that we are part of something so much bigger than ourselves.

This year I drove up to up to Bear Lake all by myself which was strange because I always have my Lucy side-kick with me. But Dave was working and Lucy was already up there in the wake of the big “motor home trip” she and her cousins have been dreaming about for years, and the other kids were coming up for the opening ceremonies in a day or two.

I loved pulling into the driveway, the lake glistening in the distance and unloading, Bo scampering around in frantic glee to be reunited (she had come up with Josh earlier).

Loved reuniting with my Lucy and heading down to swim together in the waves, Elsie in tow. That moment is imprinted on my heart, whooping and hollering with those girls, the sparkling waves knocking us over, Bear Lake cradling us back together again.

I missed out on the bulk of the calm pre and post reunion Bear Lake days that I love so much, but glad I at least got a little bit with mostly just the moms and the kids (all the brothers and their kids have a tradition of heading to Oregon each year before or after the reunion…more about Oregon HERE and how my brothers are keeping that tradition alive HERE).

Back to the lake…

Ahhhh. Love these quiet evenings.

I got to snuggle up with Lucy and finish, through tears, The Hiding Place all in one sitting (talked about that back HERE). I got so caught with emotion in some of those parts, not just because of that story of good triumphing over darkness, but with all the emotion that came from feeling like God wanted me to read that book, specifically with Lucy, and how deeply I wanted that triumph that came to Corrie’s heart to come over Lucy’s as well. If I can only help infiltrate her soul with conquerors like this maybe those roots to keep fighting and to cling to God will stick to her bones.

The sunset set on those slower-paced days.

The boys and that gaggle of kids returned from Oregon with layers of dirt from their camping and fun, and ran whooping and hollering right down to dunk themselves in the lake, everyone helped prep for dinner and the opening ceremonies…another reunion at Bear Lake on the brink of beginning.

To be continued tomorrow…

Posts about Bear Lake and Oregon

Pre and Post Bear Lake

Adventures “roughing it” in Oregon

The “next generation” in Oregon

A WEDDING at Bear Lake

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2 comments

Kate August 3, 2022 - 3:50 pm

I’m curious what you guys do when someone gets sick at your family reunions? We’ve had this happen a couple times (stomach flu a few years ago that went through 20 of the 25 of us, and Covid this summer). It is really awful! And we sanitize everything when we get to the cabin/Airbnb and make everyone wash hands a million times but it seems like with that many people someone always picks something up while traveling. And with everyone in one house it just spreads so easily. Do you quarantine sick ones, or just let them do what they feel up to doing?

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Shawni August 10, 2022 - 3:42 pm

That’s a great question. We have really lucked out with not a ton of this happening. If someone isn’t feeling well they stay out of the fray, of course, but I don’t remember many times when it has been a long period of time or anything that has passed around much. Again, I think we have really just lucked out!

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