Wild & Wanderful

Idaho.

Katy McKinleyComment

I wish I could say that we traveled to Idaho last week for a happy reason but unfortunately our travels were necessary because of a loss in our family.  My step-father Paul lost his lifelong battle with Diabetes and a good bit of our family rushed out to the other side of the country to be with my Momma.  She’s tough, don’t get me wrong.  But when you lose someone close to you, especially when he’s only a young 53 years old, you need to be surrounded with love and family.  And we did just that.

I’ve said it before but the one thing about a tragedy is that it’s not 100% tragic.  It always has this way of bringing people together.  And although a ton of tears may be shed…a lot of memories, stories and laughter are shared with the people you are closest to.  So maybe my siblings, aunties and Momma weren’t put together over that 5-day stretch for the happiest of reasons but we spent a lot of the time being happy and celebrating Paul and the hold he had on all of us.

Idaho is such a gorgeous state that we didn’t mind the time spent there.  It could have been a lot warmer though.  Holy cow was the weatherman wrong!  We were all expecting 70-ish degree weather and it was giving us cold, wind and rain in the 50’s.  Good thing I packed a sweatshirt for Louis and me so we could get some playground time in with the Aunties, Sierra and Delilah. 

Not pictured is Bennett.  And that’s because he wasn’t able to make the trip with us.  I know that he was super upset that he couldn’t come and be with my Mom but he had a wedding to photograph that weekend and there was absolutely no way we would leave a bride & groom in the lurch just before their big day.  It just wasn’t going to happen.  So Louis and I make the cross-country trek by ourselves and everything went as smoothly as it could have.

No one was complaining that Sierra and I brought our little ones with us.  Getting extra snuggle time in with Delilah was a blessing…she’s such a sweet baby.  I think Bug owes me though…we are finally out of diapers with Louis and somehow I was tricked into changing a soiled diaper.  Hmm…how does that work, exactly?

I’m beginning to sound like a broken record here but Louis LOVES his Delilah.  Loves her to death.  He likes to try and tickle her, helped Sierra feed her, made sure to be extra quiet when she was taking her naps and even snuggled up to her a few times.  I’m hoping to cultivate this into a neat relationship further down the line.

It’s safe to say that Nana loved having her grandbabies with her, too.

I’m not sure if it’s because of his love for Delilah or the fact that Louis has a strong father figure in his life (showing him that men can care for babies too)…but he found a Christmas Miss Piggy stuffed animal at Aunt Gayle’s house and decided that it was his baby.  Sometimes his baby slipped out of his hands and fell to the floor but the majority of the time, he cared for it like he’d seen Aunt Bug care for Delilah.  He even had Sierra get him a new shirt for Baby and asked her for a bottle to feed Baby with.  It was adorbs.

It was Sierra’s BIG 25th birthday the last night that we were all together.  Naturally, there was cake and a birthday song.  We pretended that the carrot cake was a healthy option…and still I got the one that was probably titled ‘death by chocolate’.  GIVEMEMORECAKE! 

Remember me mentioning that tragedy brings people together?  Case in point: I haven’t seen my brother in over two years (since Sierra & Nick’s wedding).  The three of us got to spend some actual time together and our kiddos were thrown in the mix as well.  It was great.

And bonus?  We finally had a chance to meet Paul’s niece Christina in person.  She’s adorable and sweet and I can see why Paul always spoke so highly of her.

Paul would have been upset to have missed the gathering last week.  But he’s the reason why we were all there, being supportive, and bringing his family and ours together at the same time.  We would have preferred Paul’s actual presence but his warm and quirky ways will live on through all of us.