August 02, 2012


i've been married for 15 years now.
the cute nephew that was just a baby when we first met, is DRIVING!
my husband's youngest sister who was still in high school when we got married, is now a mother of 5 with chickens.

i can tell you that it was this summer that i looked around at the family surrounding me and i felt like these were also MY people.
Rexburg, Idaho is MY hometown.  BYU-Idaho feels like a part of MY heritage.
my mother in law sat my kids on her lap to sing "Eye Winker" and "Pat a cake" and my kids knew her songs.
(do you sing pat a cake?  or do you just chant it?)
they play with the same toys that my husband played with as a child.
they know the names of my husband's cousins' kids.
I have grown up with my husband's cousins-- i knew them before they had their first kids.
wow- it is so fun for me to feel time passing and see how relationships have grown.
i felt like i was coming home as i visited.
i really, really love my mother and father in law.
i feel so blessed to be a part of this family.
(once again, i am completely lacking in pictures... i really just enjoyed my time and did not document it very well.)
When Todd and I were first married, i laughed when we visited his family and they talked about the new carpeting that one building up on campus received.
BYU-Idaho, used to be Ricks.  (Named after Thomas E. Ricks, Todd's great or great-great grandfather.)
He was a good man.
Todd comes from very good stock.
We had a darling family night where we taught our kids about their ancestor and then toured the gardens up at the college.
These are MY people.
I'm proud to be a part of this heritage.

I grew up in a family that spoke their mind-- completely.
I come from good, outspoken people.
I love my New Jersey family.
They are so friendly and very generous and very real.
They are beach people and fisherman and builders and teachers.
We banter and tease and refer to family differences in an open, blunt, sometimes sarcastic way.
They talk about politics and religion and the zit on your face.
My New Jersey family is very funny and very beautiful.
They are very comfortable in their skin and swim suits.
There is a great sense of family with these people.  They love big and deep and completely.
If you are there, you are family.  They refer to many non-family members as aunts and uncles.
They hug you and kiss you on the cheek.
They are very generous and would do anything for someone they loved.
They are not shy or calm when meeting your children-- they hold them and love them and welcome you in easily and completely.
There is a great sense of community and fellowship with my New Jersey family.
It is so fun to be with them.

I love my Idaho family, too.
They are active and outdoorsy.  They are more lake people than beach people (obviously).
They are musical and educated and very refined.
They are more used to winter layers than summer heat.
They have great families, they serve in their communities, they work hard, they are educators and leaders.
They don't like to talk about heated topics.  Conversation is much more mellow and kind.
this is a blurry picture of me and todd with some of our very best friends!
we met them in college at BYU and Taniel and I have talked on the phone every Tuesday for the past 15 years.
we have cleaned our houses together, raised our families together, and learned from each other.
how grateful i am for this sweet friend-- she has helped me to LOVE idaho girls and really want to be more like them.
she is one of the kindest people i know!  i LOVE these people.  

At first, i had a hard time feeling loved by this side of the family.
Their love is quieter than the love that i was used to.
But, i have found it.
These people LOVE by consistency.
They are constant.
Every birthday they send a card and call to sing.  Every holiday is traditional.
They visit every Sunday evening.  They plan yearly family reunions.
They know what is happening in the lives of family because they talk often.
They have family meetings and type up the minutes.  :)
They LOVE by being there, day in and day out.
I feel their love when I let them be a part of my life on a gentle, consistent basis.

This summer my kids floated down the canal with their cousins.
It was the same canal that my husband floated down with his cousins when he was a boy.
(well, floated might be a slight exaggeration... perhaps i should say we were pulled down the canal by a kind uncle ben.  ha!  thanks ben-- can't wait to do it again next year!!)

We went swimming up at the hot springs-- we always do.
Because our ancestors built the first pool up there.
tradition... tradition!  the mama... the papa.

We voted on whether or not we should renew our family BRAND.
the kids got to hold it and hear about their cattle branding ancestors.
i LOVE that.
we are so excited to brand our little cow when we get her...

Most of our Idaho cousins have kids that my kids have grown up with.
I love them.  I love that my kids have family in their life.
Every family reunion is packed full of fun for our kids.
How i LOVE these sweet aunts who plan fun things for my kids to do.
I feel loved by their efforts.  I feel good when i am with them.
I want to grow up to be more like them.
do you love my one picture of my sister in law and mother in law?
ha!  i promise, more picture next year!
There is something great about family.
i truly LOVE the perspective that both of my families bring into my life.
i'm grateful to span East to West!
we are RICH because of our heritage.
i am so grateful for my in-laws, for their extended families, and for my brother and sister in laws.
thanks for being a constant in my life!
family is good.
this is quite a crew... and yet there are so many more not pictured!
someday when they are older they will walk through these orchards and remember childhood. 
so good.
and today i am so grateful.


Lanette said...

You're IS good. We had such a fun time with you guys! Your kids felt like an extension of my 'em to pieces. It's fun that you guys are closer so that hopefully, we'll get to see more of each other here or in OR, too. All things get better with time, don't they?!

Honey said...

I love that Moss family, too! Such great people! :)

Yayi said...

I agreed with every single one of your comments. Our own background is way to different to even compare it with the Moss Family. However, I totally understand what you said about feeling their tender and softer love. Consistency is their way of loving!! in the words of Dr. Gary Chapman, their love language is "acts of service."
Very good post Jen!

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