Family Matters

All right friends, I’m going to try to hit on an important topic today.  One that affects us all, in various ways during various stages in life, whether as a helpless infant, an angsty teenager,  a 30-year-old amateur blogger (that’s me!), or beyond.  Have you guessed what it is?

If you guessed “donuts!!!”, you’re obviously a genius with smarts only surpassed by your impeccable taste in food groups!  But no, sorry, donut lovers, I’m actually talking about something else in this post (although donuts will likely be a topic of another post sometime soon!).  This post will be centered on ‘family’.

In the event that you’ve been too busy in your regular day-to-day life to keep up with recent events in my life, or if you’ve simply been living under a rock lately, I want to catch you up to date with something that’s affected my life quite a bit over the last several years — Anna and I have been living in Seattle, WA.  And aside from my brother-in-law Ryan moving to Seattle a few years back (we faux bros lived only a few blocks away from each other and had an excellent run!), neither Anna nor I really had any close family members within a few thousand miles.

Fortunately, we found amazing friends in Seattle.  This just can’t be underscored and bolded enough times (come on, WordPress…).  Some were coworkers, some were housemates, some were neighbors, and some were generally free spirits too hard to pin down in a specific category.  All continue to be beloved friends.

But, as this memorable television show intro reminds us all, family matters!

Anna and I value our family a ton.  Here’s why: family is where everyone has grown up with you, so they all know what makes you tick.  It’s where everyone laughs at even your worst joke about Indiana’s time zones, where someone’s liable to get bugged by a sibling for no apparent reason, and where everyone knows your greatest moments as well as your most embarrassing, and both make great dinner table conversation starters!

During our time so far in the midwest, we’ve had the privilege of staying with some family members, and grabbing a meal with others as we pass through their neck of the woods (or cornfields, in some cases).  It’s been a fantastic experience to catch up with those of you who we’ve been able to see.  We’ve attempted to get pictures of us with everyone, although we regrettably haven’t always done the best job remembering to do this when a large group of us is all together.  Here’s a sample of pictures of family members we’ve visited so far.

Uncle Brad and Aunt Poppy, our wonderful hosts while in Green Bay, WI.  Regrettably, we didn't get a picture of everyone together when all my cousins were there.

Uncle Brad and Aunt Poppy, our wonderful hosts while in Green Bay, WI. Regrettably, we didn’t get a picture of everyone together when all my cousins were there.

My cousin Brandon and his wife Ashley (who made the best breakfast burritos ever!), and their fun-loving kids took us in for breakfast one morning in Green Bay.

My cousin Brandon and his wife Ashley (who made the best breakfast burritos ever!), and their fun-loving kids took us in for breakfast one morning in Green Bay.

We were fortunate enough to catch my Uncle Geoff and Aunt Ann in Munster, IN as we were driving out of Chicago.  We went to get brunch, and my cousin Carissa and her daughter joined us.  This was a quick visit, but one we are glad fit into everyone's schedule!

We were fortunate enough to catch my Uncle Geoff and Aunt Ann in Munster, IN as we were driving out of Chicago. We went to get brunch, and my cousin Carissa and her daughter joined us. This was a quick visit, but one we are glad fit into everyone’s schedule!

Here we see our two protagonists visiting with nearly all of Anna's mom's side of the family - the Doti family.  We stayed with Donna and Jim, Anna's nana and nano, and then everyone came over for pizza and fun.  Great people and great food!

Here we see our two protagonists visiting with nearly all of Anna’s mom’s side of the family – the Doti family. We stayed with Donna and Jim, Anna’s nana and nano, and then everyone came over for pizza and fun. Great people and great food!

We stopped in Bloomington, IN for another quick but very enjoyable stop with my cousin Joel and his girlfriend Dana.  They showed us around town and we got a taste of what Bloomington is all about.

We stopped in Bloomington, IN for another quick but very enjoyable stop with my cousin Joel and his girlfriend Dana. They showed us around town and we got a taste of what Bloomington is all about.

Here we see Anna and two of her cousins, Ben and Naomi, with three fuzzy little puppies as well.  We're in Monroe, IN, visiting Anna's Aunt Kay and Uncle Bob.

Here we see Anna and two of her cousins, Ben and Naomi, with three fuzzy little puppies as well. We’re in Monroe, IN, visiting Anna’s Aunt Kay and Uncle Bob.

Anna and Garrison with Anna's cousin Nate and his wife Krista, in Decatur, IN.  Taken by their son, who is much shorter then Nate or I, as you can tell by how much of our heads didn't make it into the picture.  Nate, you were mid-sentence in every picture!

Anna and Garrison with Anna’s cousin Nate and his wife Krista, in Decatur, IN. Taken by their son, who is much shorter then Nate or I, as you can tell by how much of our heads didn’t make it into the picture. Nate, you were mid-sentence in every picture!

Here are Aunt Kay, Uncle Bob, and Anna's cousins Betsy and Naomi, with Naomi's little one, who loved to play "I chase you, then you chase me, then we keep doing this until the older one has to sit down".

Here are Aunt Kay, Uncle Bob, and Anna’s cousins Betsy and Naomi, with Naomi’s little one, who loved to play “I chase you, then you chase me, then we keep doing this until the older one has to sit down”.

Here Anna and I are with Anna's Grandma Joyce and her friend Dave.  We stayed with Joyce for two nights while we visited family in the Fort Wayne, IN area.  She had made an excellent pineapple upside down cake for us!

Here Anna and I are with Anna’s Grandma Joyce and her friend Dave. We stayed with Joyce for two nights while we visited family in the Fort Wayne, IN area. She had made an excellent pineapple upside down cake for us!

We’ve been so far from family for such a long time, and we’ve really enjoyed getting to catch up with every one of you, plus the few of you who didn’t make it into a picture.  We still have plans to see more family members along the way.

And, finally, here’s an inspirational family quote.  “Siblings – Nature’s way of teaching you about fractions.”

Until the next post, ciao!

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Family Matters

  1. Kay Frey says:

    And . . . as we get to know Garrison more and more we realize how fortunate we are that Anna added him to our family. Thanks, Anna. You guys are a very special couple. Thanks for blessing us by including us in your itinerary. Aunt Kay

  2. Brandon Grant says:

    Garrison, is was a pleasure having you and Anna join us in Green Bay. Thank you for stopping by. Not sure if you are interested in doing this but it might be helpful to some of us if we know where you are going to be. This is because I travel frequently around the country, as I am sure others do too, and if I know that we are going to be in the same area I certainly would let you know so we could meet up again:-) And please don’t forget about Hong Kong in January. I will be there the 2nd thru the 14th and you should really come visit me and explore the city.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s