We didn’t fly back to the desert after we left Switzerland.

We flew directly to Utah because there was something special happening there:

Yep, another nephew was getting married.

When you and your husband are both from families with nine kids each, there are a LOT of nieces and nephews, and I think we are in the “sweet spot” for weddings right about now. It is going to keep multiplying exponentially and we love getting to any of those weddings we can!

We got to go to the wedding luncheon for a happy reunion with all this family we love so much:

Not everyone is pictured, and I’m mad I didn’t even get a pic of the mother and father of the groom (Dave’s sister and her husband) who were at a different table.

But yow, I love these people.

As I sat at that luncheon listening to the things the siblings were saying about the bride and groom, I became so overcome with the power of a family.

First of all, the parents, coming from their own different family backgrounds, bonding together to work to make something new.

Something powerful.

That didn’t just happen. They fought to make it so.

Their families had their issues (as all families do). But somewhere in there there was a choice.

A choice to open the “effectual doors” to create their own legacy and they got to work.

It’s so amazing to watch those seeds they have planted take root, and I was overcome with gratitude as I looked at all those people I love, all those relationships fostered and worked for.

No, that didn’t just happen.

And second, the siblings. They really, really love each other. Not only do they love each other, but they respect one another. They have each other’s backs. Which makes me grateful for Dave’s parents all over again because whether it’s in the genes or just something they exemplified so well, it ripples out to the rest of us and it is an incredible thing.

Eight of the nine kids were there:

We had to do an in-law pictures too:)

I am so grateful I get to be part of this bunch.

The mom and dad of the groom are on the right up there.


Love this pic. of the brothers too, but we’re missing Steve…

Played some “One and Done” at my nephew’s house before the ceremony:

And then, there they were, that beautiful couple all married and sealed and glowing:

We got to hang with Max and Abby before the dance party began (of course, with cards)…

…and then it was on to the dance celebration and I’m telling you what, Claire did not disappoint with her dance moves on the dance floor!

The next day we went to visit my brother and sister’s new houses (even though they were all up at Bear Lake for a reunion), so weird to be there without my family in town:

A pic to send my absent parents a little love before we took off:

And then, HOME!

Which felt so good after being away so long (Europe before this trip).

Home with a full heart of gratitude that we get to be surrounded by family who makes us want to be better.

Hoping we can keep ourselves on the same trajectory they have created, and basking in the goodness that a wedding brings.

Posts about family relationships:

Ten ideas to help foster strong sibling relationships

Creating a bold new heritage

Nine Ideas to Strengthen Youth

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  1. Beautiful! Also, holy smokers, the genes are strong on Dave’s side!!! Those brothers – even the way they cross their arms! I love family resemblance. When I introduce my sister to someone, I always say “…and this is my sister” and the response is usually “I can tell.” So funny!

    1. Ha! Love that. Yes, there is some strong family resemblance going on in Dave’s family, even through to all the grandkids in my opinion!

  2. Hi Shawni, what a beautiful event with beautiful people! Just wanted to thank you for continuing to post here. I’ve noticed the way you approach blogging seems to be a little different now? More conceptual themes and less details. (I miss your monthly “Little Things”!) I totally get that your kids are older now and you want to respect their privacy (I know you’re always so thoughtful about that), but I feel like we got a lot more details about what Max and Elle were up to in high school than now with Claire and Lucy. For example, I loved the whole posts dedicated to prom/dance prep for each of them, and with Claire we only got one picture. I am sure you have very good reasons for this! Just wanted to let you know that your family is a light to many of us and I thank you for continuing to post in any capacity. I would love to hear more about this shift, but I also know it’s none of my business. Thanks for being you!

    1. Thanks for this input, K! I actually am in the middle of getting a “Little Things” post ready for next week, I’m missing those too! I think Covid put a hanger in that for a while, and then life got so busy but I do so want to share those little things. I am so far behind on them, so I was at first trying to back up to cover it all, but I decided I’ll just start where I am! I am trying to figure out the best way to share these days. I have so many thoughts rolling around in my head, and I also want to document family life, would love any blog reader thoughts I can get, so thank you for this.

  3. Your skin is flawless! Do you do Botox or what skincare do you do that keeps your skin healthy, wrinkle and spot etc free?! Would love to know your secrets?! I’m always interested in how I can keep my skin healthy as I age!

    1. Oh my goodness you made my day, but you’re not seeing up close and personal. I should post those more often, it is scary! I am definitely feeling my age these days. I did just start wearing sunscreen every day this last year and I think from what “they” say, that is the biggest help you can have as a preventative for wrinkles. Wish I had started earlier!

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