Giving thanks

We gathered together at my Dad’s house this weekend to celebrate an early Thanksgiving.  It was so wonderful to have all of us there together, I’m not sure the last time it worked out like that.

Saturday morning we woke up to snow!

Veda rolling a snowball in the horse pasture

It was a light dusting but the girls headed out to enjoy it anyway.  I was hoping it would last all day because I had planned to ask someone to take our family photos and the snowy background would have been really pretty.  But it melted quickly.  It was pretty chilly outside though, so Enzo and I stayed in where it was warm and watched them through the window.  He thought that was funny.

Sisters making faces at their brother

Veda adores the horses and they get a lot of her attention while we are there.  I bet if they could talk they would tell us how grateful they are for that.

Veda and Eli

My brother and his family drove over from Boardman.  My sister and her family drove in from PDX.  Aunt Nancy and Uncle Gerry drove over from Heppner.  We were missing Grandma Wilson due to a touch of the flu (hope you feel better soon Grandma!).  It was awesome to have all of Papa’s grandkids under one roof!

Wyatt (7), Claire (13), Ebin (3), Ethan (7), Hunter (3), Veda (10) and Enzo (9 months)
Papa carving the bird


My dapper boy!

We ate a big delicious turkey dinner.  My favorite dish was the raspberry jello salad that Marta made.  I brought the recipe home so I can make it this week.  I heard Mark say he loved the broccoli cheese nip casserole.  And Claire enjoyed her 4 to 1 gravy-turkey ratio.   Oh, and Enzo ate a TON of mashed potatoes.

Wyatt had made a turkey hat at his grade school luncheon and gave it to Papa to take home.  So I put it on Enzo’s head…he didn’t mind at first

happy turkey baby

…but then he accidentally snapped the elastic against his face…

not so happy turkey baby

…which wasn’t very fun. (See Aunt Sherrie!  he does cry!)

My sister was kind enough to take our family picture, which for some reason is never an easy thing to accomplish.

<3 <3 <3

Oh, did I mention I colored my hair red?  Yep, those are my new red locks. (guess this means I need to change our blog header again!)

Anyway, back to the family photo thing.  There’s always something.  I made sure the girls were all set with their outfits but then Claire’s shirt shrank (the half shirt to begin with, so I guess it became a quarter shirt), so she ended up just wearing my sweater.  And Mark didn’t bring any other shoes besides his grey tennis shoes.

The Ritchie's 2011

And there was the feeling that I was the only one interested in capturing this photo in the first place, so it was hard to get us all on the same page (i.e. looking forward, eyes open, smiling, at least ONE of these things in common).  But it is what it is.  This is why I can’t justify investing money in a professional photographer (thanks for taking these Andi!!), unless of course I knew they were miracle workers and could make us magically be perfect for once.  Until then, I will be happy with these because at least I am lucky enough to call these beautiful people my family.

Claire took a couple for my sister as well…

Andi & Tony, Ethan & Ebin

That afternoon, my sister and I went and visited our Grandma Brooks at her ranch.  I love that house.  I miss the family gatherings that used to happen in the basement.  I miss the laughter, the games of pool, sitting in front of the fireplace until you were full on sweating, Grandpa sitting at the couch telling a story but laughing so hard he can barely talk (so thankful we have this on video), sitting at the bar having a drink and enjoying my wildly opinionated family (I come by it honestly).


Then we all dropped in on my cousin Chet and his wife Natalie’s house just down the road.  Their children Kade & Kallyn are so adorable!  It was nice to catch up and I wish we could have stayed longer.  They assure me that parties in the basement will happen again one day. I love that thought!

And then we just relished the time we had with Papa and Marta.  I would love to make it there to visit more often, but things get so busy at home and time flies by.  We were there for Easter, and then 4th of July and then this weekend.  Too many months in between, yet it didn’t feel like it was more than a couple weeks!  Does that make sense?  Basically, I miss my Dad.  I wish we lived closer to each other.  But I am thankful it’s just a two hour drive through the breathtaking Columbia Gorge to see him.

Charlie loves the country!
My little turkey lurkey
Papa, me, Claire, Enzo & Marta
Veda and Bailey
Veda riding Ruby, and her canine escorts
Papa and his boy!

I love this photo.  I see my Dad in Enzo’s face multiple times a day and it makes my heart so very happy!

our beautiful children!

and finally…

How many grandkids can you fit in the ATV Papa?
Six! (Enzo will have to wait until he's a little bigger)

We have a wonderful week ahead of dinner with friends, and dinner with the Ritchie parents.  I am excited to bake desserts and try out the raspberry jello salad recipe.  Will we get more snow this weekend?

Happy Thanksgiving!  I am thankful that you read my blog!  <3


3 thoughts on “Giving thanks

  1. Thanks for the wonderful photo journey of the Wilson family Thanksgiving weekend. It looks like you all had such a good time. I am sure Ron and Marta were busy all week and weekend preparing, but what great memories they provided. Looking forward to Thanksgiving at our house this week. I have no horses, just a couple of loving wiener dogs.

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