Friday, September 14, 2007

A Memorable Trip

I spent the last four days in my hometown of Bartlesville, Oklahoma. Although I was not born there(I'm proud to say I was born in Atlanta, Georgia), I grew up there and graduated from high school as a Bartlesville Bruin. I'd start singing the fight song right now, but to be honest I have no clue what it is. Bartlesville's a great place to grow up. Not too big, not too small, but just enough to keep you from getting too bored. I remember my high school weekends being spent at the Youth Canteen(it was a place where they would have school dances on football fridays) or just hanging out at a friend's house. Although I remember saying at the time how boring it was, looking back now, I wouldn't trade it for any other place.

So that brings me to last four days. My Grandmother passed away a few weeks ago as most of you probably know and I went to Bartlesville for her funeral on Tuesday. Since I am the only person in my family living in the United States(Andie and her family are in Paris and the rest of my family is in Dubai), it's not very often that the six of us get together. And I mean just the six of us. In fact, the last time we were all together in Bartlesville was May of 1998 for my high school graduation. Beth was unable to come because of teaching and Etienne and the kids had to stay in Paris. To be honest, I wasn't really looking forward to going to Bartlesville. I knew that it was going to be hard to be there and not have my Grandma there. And I was right, it was hard. But not near as hard as I thought it would be because I had my family around me and we had a memorable time. Although sadness brought us together, our laughter and joy while spending time with each other kept us sane. I think I laughed harder in the last four days than I have in a really long time. And it made me realize again how much my family means to me and how blessed I am to have all of the family I have.

Besides enjoying our time together, I also got a chance to eat some great food and spend some quality time with friends. My list of groosmen has grown quite a bit by now. I officially have five groosmen for our wedding and still have two more that I need to ask. While in Bartlesville I was able to ask Justin Fowler(one of my best friends since high school), Kevin Hay(my oldest friend since I was five years old!), and Shawn Barker(my Bible study leader in high school and a great friend who I have known since I was 16). Those three guys along with my best man Jacob Lawson(my favorite Policeman from Arkansas) and my little brother Sean are my groomsmen as of now.

Besides great company, we had some great food as well. We celebrated Sean and Kelsey's 18th birthday by eating at Murphy's Steakhouse. And although I've never had a steak there, I have had my share of hot hamburgers. If you don't know what a hot hamburger is, just check out the picture below. Besides Murphy's, we ate at Braum's twice, and also had a bbq dinner at Dink's. I must say, I ate like a king!!!!

My Grandma's service was great. The minister summed up my Grandmother perfectly. She was a caring person who never put herself first. Someone who cared more about seeing your smile than seeing her own. A special lady who will never be duplicated but fortunately for me has passed on many of her amazing qualities to my mother. I'm a better person for knowing my Grandma and an even better person for being able to spend almost my entire life in her presence. I will miss her every day and be thankful for all the times we spent together.

The trip to Bartlesville was capped off by an eight hour drive home in a 16 foot moving truck. And it was a packed truck at that. Mom if you're reading this, thanks for taking my advice and getting the 16 foot instead of the 10 foot. We would have been in trouble with the latter.

Now that I'm back in Houston, I can't help but look forward to Beth and I's trip to Italy in three months. Not only will the six of us be together once again, but this time Beth will be there too as well as Etienne and Gab and Louise. I can't wait!!!

Andie and I



Me and two of my Groosman(Justin and Jacob)



The Kids



The Family



Murphy's Hot Hamburger!

1 comment:

afoos said...

I had a great time too with you and everyone! It was so much fun to hang out and to share both our sad and fun memories. I wish we lived closer...

Can't wait for Xmas and to have Beth, Etienne and the kids join us. They don't know what's in store for them with our crazy family!

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