My mom did all the shopping for the party, cousin Laura debuted her very first ice cream cake (which was fabulous,) and my Uncle Bill brought his fire pit and did all the BBQing. He is a master BBQer and we had homemade hamburgers, baked beans, salad, and Trader Joe's potato salad (in an effort to recreate my grandma's potato salad, which is impossible.)
The 12 of us in attendance sat in a circle around the fire pit in the backyard and ate and laughed and mused about the mystery that is life and how time continues to move forward with or without the ones we love. Tito and Tita may not have been there physically, but they were very much on our minds.
As usual when the family gets together (I don't want to brag, but my family is awesome,) 4 hours felt like 30 minutes. We had to do all the cleaning up and tried to leave everything as it was when we arrived, which sounds simple, but it isn't easy maintaining a house that no one lives in.
My mom and I, the last 2 to leave and lock up, did what we have done a lot lately, which is wander around the house still in disbelief that Tito and Tita are gone. I felt Tito's loss a lot when we were in the garage where his tools remain, still impeccably organized. I felt Tita's loss in the kitchen, which no longer has the aromas of foods and flavors only she could create. I still cannot grasp the idea of anyone else living in that house, but I guess as we slowly empty it out it will get a little easier.
One thing I notice is that those of us remaining seem to want to be together more than ever. I guess we have all realized how transitory life is and we don't want to waste any moments together. Normally I would not go out of town on a 2 day weekend, but several family members are making plans to go to the air show in Miramar (by San Diego) in 2 weeks. It sounds fun and I have really been craving family time lately. I'm seriously considering it.
Here at home I'm still experimenting a lot with that Scrapblog site, which is really fun and highly addictive. I'm now going onto the Cutest Blog on the Block site, where I get my layouts, finding the next layout I want to use, and THEN making a header that matches the color scheme. Plus, the holidays are soon to be upon us, which creates a lot of options. Here are some you may see in the near future, including one I did for my friend, Emma, in the UK: