Simple Visits

As much as I am a suburban girl through and through, there is something about visiting my dear husband's oh-so-rural hometown that rejuvenates me.  A weekend at Grammie's house (as my kids would say) just fills me up in all of the right ways.

It might Grammie herself and her unfailing ability to make us feel like there is nothing else on earth she'd rather be doing than enjoying our company at her quiet, lovely home nestled on a hill overlooking a couple of ponds.   It might be the amazing breakfasts that Grandaddy prepares every single morning.  It might be the serenity of being miles from anyone (except maybe a few wild animals of which I'm frightened in an oh-so-suburban way).  It might be the fact that there is love every single place you go in that small town, whether it's the grocery store, or the grandparents' house, or church on Sunday morning.  It feels as if the whole place is bursting at the seams...with pure love and care.  And I am so blessed for such a wonderful little town to have found a way into my life.

I remember visiting for the first time my freshman year of college, nine years ago.  I drove there with my would-be husband for his cousin's wedding, then spent the night at a mutual friend's house who lived down the hall from me in my dorm and across the same small town as my future husband.  (Small world, I tell you.)  From the moment I arrived, I just knew.  I was home.  I wasn't even dating my husband at the time (well, he says that was our first date....), but I just felt like I had arrived somewhere that I belonged.  It was the same feeling I got when I visited my now-alma mater.  God spoke to me.  And I heard.  Loud and clear.

And now, this sleepy little town is my home away from home.  My respite.

And it's where we spent our last weekend, relishing in the joys of family - mostly outside at the cookout house, enjoying the beautiful fall weather.  (I have been waiting all year for this cool, crisp air.)

Where Grammie provides endless snacks for perpetually hungry youngin's

Where youngin's peep over the wall of the cookout house wishing they could get down to that pond...somehow... 

Maybe on the tippy-toes?  (Where pants are optional because comfort comes first...)

 Where the cookout house has become a racetrack for princesses on Big Wheels

And gorgeous cousins cooperate for group pictures

Where birthday girls spin in endless pirouettes while younger cousins climb into buckets in the background

Where there's always a party, even if it's just the immediate family

And where your niece watches on as your sixteen-month old tackles a giant sun-shaped balloon

Visits to Grammie's - I think the whole family would be with me on this one - this is our simple pleasure.

(Even if the whole place does a sigh of relief when my rowdy party of five heads home.)

We love you, Grammie!  (And Grandaddy too.)

Linking up with Dayle today at...

Project Simple Pleasures2


Brooke said...

I love the dirty footed Sarah! And tell Grammie that I am coming down there to crash her next BBQ! Love that outdoor space. :)

dee dee said...

This looks to be a perfect way to spend a weekend! A beautiful setting, fantastic family, and the overwhelming love that seems to flow from each photo!
Dee Dee

Denise said...

I'm so glad that you feel so at home in my hometown. I know those people you talk about and I just love them too. The whole family has such warm, kind hearts. Thanks for sharing about your wonderful family.

Dayle said...

Jennie, this made me smile over and over. I loved how you described your grammie's place, and why it's so special. I still miss my grandparents, even though they've been gone many years now. Being together as a family is truly one of life's greatest simple pleasures. Thanks so much for sharing this.

Sharon Kirby said...

Jennie, can I go next time? PLEEEEZ...

What a wonderful place - I love the cookout house! Your kids will never forget these times. I still hold very fond memories of visiting my grandparents' house - a little house on top of a hill that my grandfather built himself. And you have discovered the secret of the simple pleasure - it's the PEOPLE, their loving and caring hearts - that makes the PLACE special!

Thanks for sharing!

Minivan Mommy said...

Great pictures! Looks like an amazing place.

Debbie said...

Can't tell you how much I enjoyed this. You have captured the feeling of family and comfort soo well. Makes me want to visit too. Thanks for sharing your week-end. Blessings, Debbie

Joan said...

Love this, Jennie. Special times to be treasured.

It's Just Dottie said...

I want to go with you next time . Oh how wonderful your Grammie is!! I love mine.too.

Debbie said...

I'm soooo tired after a very long day today. Maybe that's the reason that I'm crying as I read this, and it's a HAPPY post. I love that you love that town and that family and THAT WOMAN. She loves you back, you know.

I really enjoyed your pictures and tale of the weekend in Shep Land. You can see the love in every one of them.

And btw... you can see the blue hour in one of them too.

Little secret: I almost posted about sitting among your family in church as my simple pleasure. Grammie cried, you know. Her heart was so full.

I have prayed with her over every member of that clan. God is good.

anka said...

Great shots! I would love to have such a retreat to go to. Cousin group pictures are so lovely, I bet they will always be valued.

ModernMom said...

What a beautiful post...how wonderful to have a place like that. It is like a postcard:)

Kristen said...

How wonderful!

Anonymous said...

Everyone is always welcomed at Grammie's House. However, it is just wood and bricks without the love that comes visiting and swirling through and through. We are so blessed with children that are amazing and beautiful inside and out! Yes, Jennie, you are a beautiful young lady in a million ways. You have taught this old lady so much, and for that I will be eternally grateful. Your gift for writing and lifting spirits flows like love from the keyboard. Thank you for sharing yourself with us. Thank you for giving us three beautiful grandchildren. Thank you for making my son the happiest man alive. Thank you for teaching my grandchildren about Jesus and His love for them. The pleasure goes both ways... however, I am not sure I'd classify it as "simple". It is nothing short of amazing! Love, Grammie :-)

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