On the way home, I, being my mother's daughter, asked everyone what their favorite parts of the trip were, so here is the compiled list:
Top 10 Things We Liked About Thanksgiving in Ligonier
1. (Strider and Pete): "Playing football -- and watching football."
The weather was nice enough on the first couple days to play some good games outside...
.... and then when the weather was colder and the BIG games were on, somehow Pete configured a little tiny TV with a paperclip and a coat hanger so they could all watch it!
2. (Rayna): "Playing with cousins -- and Aunt Sue"
She loved all the attention she got... playing games, reading books, going for walks. There was always someone to play with!
3. (Amy): Being in Ligonier
Driving into this town conjures up many fun memories for me (especially from when I was counselor there), but it's also been fun to see how it's changed -- and become more and more beautiful --each time we go. Here is the driveway of the camp:
The first day we were there, especially, was beautiful. We spent a few hours exploring and playing out in the fields and hills.
The warm weather didn't last.... By Thursday evening it was snowing, and Friday morning we woke up to a blanket of snow on the ground! The kids had fun playing in it.... Alas, I didn't get any pictures! (what was I thinking??)
6. (Pete): "Conversations with my nieces and nephews"
The older kids are getting so.... well, old now! They're a lot of fun to talk to and hang out with.... and this is related to one of my favorite things from the weekend...
7. (Amy): Seeing how well the older cousins play with the younger cousins.
We sent all the kids (except the 2 babies) on a big Scavenger Hunt around the camp, and they were in teams of 2: one older kid and one younger. It was fun to see them work together and enjoy each other. I kept thinking about how blessed I am to be a part of a family where the teenagers (even the guys!) actually play with the little kids. Here were a couple of the teams:
We had fun doing some Christmas activities as well, since we won't all see each other then.
Everyone helped make their "signature dishes" and the food really was delicious.
The greater Frank family has yet to produce a shy or reserverd individual, so the times we spend together are full of loud conversations. At any particular moment, it's fun to just sit back and try to listen to how many people are talking at once. I would estimate that of the 22 people present, there are always at least 17 saying something. And oftentimes it's awfully random stuff.... Like 3-year-old Grace repeating "Gobble, gobble, gobble, gobble" incessantly (which I guess was my fault because we played a Turkey Hunt game in which I told them they had to "gobble gobble" when they found a turkey), or Grandma Jane singing "Praise the Lord, and pass the ammunition" over and over.... with no clear context as to why she was singing it. But, hey, that's what makes family fun, right?
Now, we're home, though... and it's slightly quieter. Colsen appears to be coming down with the bi-annual Franksgiving cold, so maybe some quiet downtime will be good for awhile...