Last summer, I went to visit my Dad in Idaho. I was recovering from my surgeries, so the kids and I headed up north for some rest and relaxation. While I was there, my Dad and I hatched a plan to have a family reunion some time in 2015.
I'm one of six kids so it's complicated to get all of us together in the same place at the same time. I tried to remember the last time we were all together and I gave up when I went back 20 years. Seriously, it's been more than 20 years! That's nuts, right? I love, love my family. And I see them a lot, even though we're spread out all over the western United States. But usually, it's just one sibling (and their family) at a time. Occasionally, I'll manage to see two brothers at once or maybe my sister and a brother. But all 6 of us, our spouses and 18.5 (my sister-in-law is pregnant) grandkids in the same place? Never. Ever. Until last month.
After months and months of planning. Searching out the perfect venue. Locking down dates that worked for everyone. Planning meals. Making shopping lists. And then shopping for five days and four nights, it finally happened: the first ever Camp DeMucha. And it was nothing short of magical.
My Top 10 favorite moments:
1. Roasting marshmallows, making s'mores and telling stories by the camp fire.
2. Our sidewalk picnic at Yellowstone that probably embarrassed our children, but reminded all of us of the many Disneyland picnics we had growing up.
3. When little Zella would get mad and babble as she wiggled her finger at the offender (or basically anything Zella would do).
4. Seeing all the cousins sitting together at meals. The first night at camp, they all ate with their parents, but by the end they weren't interested in the grownups and were all sharing one big table.
5. Watching all the "bigger" kids playing blackjack in the dining hall after the littles went to bed. Uncle Mike supervised and slipped them extra treats.
6. Seeing my brothers in the kitchen cleaning and prepping potatoes for dinner.
7. Watching Uncle Mark entertain all the kids with all things "Mark."
8. Sleeping in one big cabin with the entire crew. Bunk beds for all of us. And all the men trying to out snore each other. Thank goodness for noise-canceling headphones.
9. Seeing the Northern Light our last night there. I had actually gone into the cabin to use the toilet and Shelby came running to tell me to come back out to the camp fire. I ignored her because I was doing my business. When she went back and told Mike I was in the bathroom, he came and told me I had to come "Right. This. Moment." I did and I was amazed.
10. Hiking to Mystic Falls at Yellowstone. I have never seen a prettier sight.