Sunday, January 2, 2011 - I couldn't decide if we should go to church this morning. I knew the boys were exhausted from our trip to Arkansas and then finding out that Papa had passed away. I felt my mom deserved some peace and quiet in her own home and I thought the boys might enjoy getting out. We went to Nate and RyAnn's church. After church, we went back to my parents' house for lunch. Then, I loaded up my boys to go wash clothes at RyAnn's house. Originally, we were going to pick Kerry up in East Texas, but I could tell that our boys needed their Daddy. I ended up calling him telling him he was needed. He arrived that evening. We arrived back at my parents, got the kids to bed, and I packed for yet another trip within a trip.
Monday, January 3, 2011 - We all headed back to Arkansas. We arrived in time to stop by and see Loriece. We sat and visited with her and family for a little while before going to our hotel. We arrived just in time to get settled and have Kerry run get all 6 boys McDonalds. The viewing was scheduled for that evening and Kerry was on child duty since Nate had to work until the following day. He fed the boys and took them to the swimming pool. What a trooper he was! Six boys will keep anyone busy!
RyAnn and I rode to the viewing together. It was nice to see so many people come; although, I personally do not do well with viewings. So, I sat to the side, visited some, and waited patiently. Afterwards, my sister and I grabbed some dinner and relieved Kerry of 6 boys. We were all ready to see our beds.
Tuesday, January 4, 2011 - The day of the funeral. I had no idea how our boys would do, so I was so thankful that Kerry was able to be there as well. Our boys did so well. They were troopers! Silas even fell asleep during the service, so we didn't have to get up until the very end. My Dad spoke some and the pastor said some kind words that gave me a glimpse of who Papa was in his last years.
After the service, we had to drive a ways to a small town (can't remember the name) for the graveside. It was nostalgic, so much history in this small cemetery. I got to see where Brenda Kay was buried. She is my mother's sister who died before my mom was born. My middle name comes from Brenda Kay. I thought that was rather special.
Then, the church provided the family a meal afterwards. It was rather a late lunch, but one filled with family, visiting, and memories. Caleb enjoyed meeting one of his "cousins", more like a distant cousin. All too soon, it was time to say goodbye to family in Arkansas, family from Colorado, and some family in Texas. Kerry, the boys, and I were headed back to Granny's house to spend one last night with her.
My Mom, Uncle Ricky, Aunt Jackie (Papa's three living children)
Granny and her four boys
Wednesday, January 5, 2011 - We decided to go see Granny at her office before we left for Arlington. The boys enjoyed seeing where Granny worked and are now convinced that she must have as much money as she wants since she worked at a bank. I don't think they understood that money isn't free there, especially since she handed them all money as we were leaving. It was great seeing Granny one last time before we left.
When we arrived in Arlington, my mom had prepared my favorite meal one last time even though I know she was tired. RyAnn stopped by with Brock and Braxton so we could all say goodbye. Most of the time, Josiah is not a fan of goodbyes as you can see in the picture with his cousins.
Granny, Silas, Levi, Caleb, and Silas
Josiah, Caleb, Levi, and Silas
Josiah, Brock, Caleb, Levi, Silas, and Braxton
Thursday, January 6, 2011 - We started our long drive back to California. We stopped in Albuquerque for the night. I thought I was booking a suite that slept 6, but was surprised that our room slept 4. Needless to say, not the greatest night I've ever had.
Friday, January 7, 2011 - Last day on the road! We stopped in Gallup, NM so the boys could play in the snow. This is the first time that Josiah, Levi, and Silas have seen and touched snow. Levi outlasted all of them. We made it home, unloaded the van, and went to bed. It took us quite awhile to get back into the swing of things, but I think we're there now.
Kerry and the boys
Bailey and Caleb