Counting My Blessings

I enjoy our yearly girls’ getaways so much! All our Misses Forsters and Miss Forsters and former Miss Forsters gather together for some annual “bonding” time at the beach. It is a time I look forward to all year. Grandmas are supposed to bore people with pictures, so here I go!

The four-day weekend started with a trip to the outlet mall. Our shopping marathon is a little more challenging than it used to be, now that we have four precious little girls in tow. They were troopers, though, with only a few, “When are we going to the beach?” questions thrown in occasionally.

After four or five hours of ducking into one store after another, we ended with the Carters store, which we saved until the last, because we usually go crazy there. This year the girls’ line didn’t inspire any of us. The little boys’ clothes were darling, but we have no little boys to put them on…yet.  But we had fun with our show-and-tell at the beach house after we were all done shopping. Everyone came home with something pretty.

We spent the weekend with the goal of just having a good time together — no big agenda. We walked to the beach and played in the sand at least two times a day. We watched a movie, thought we would play games but never got around to it, read books, played with the little girls, held babies, made cards, painted princess dresses for Katie, journaled, ate lots, read some Psalms and sang together, watched Jim Wilson’s DVD on maintaining joy, had some good rounds of giggles, watched sunsets, and slept once in awhile. We also prayed a lot for husbands, brothers, and sons who had backpacked into the wilderness a couple hundred miles away, and were making log rafts, shooting their guns into the lake, and “cooking” their own meals. The cell phone reception was just good enough to assure us that they were alive.

A princess dress for Katie
Cocoa Puffs for the artist

Johanna, Victoria, Nana, Bethany, and Hannah

We're riding our dragon!

Aunt Sooby and Aunt Boppy were wonder-aunts, always ready to make up stories, chase kite strings, and get all wet in the waves, while others of us vegetated on blankets, read books, changed diapers, and scraped sand off of sticky faces. Aunt Hannah was a champion story reader, and bravely weathered her first overnights away from Joseph. With all of us helping, Johanna and Katelyn hopefully got a bit of a break from potty trips with the toddlers – at least enough to help make up for the extra work it always is when you take your little ones away from home and normal routines.

Aunt Boppy and Katie
Virginia with Katelyn, taking her kite flying seriously

Hannah, still smiling, even without Joseph
Little Victoria knows how to laugh, and laugh, and laugh.

We had enough spills, toddler tussles, and lack of sleep to afford plenty of sanctifying moments, and enough laughter and hugs to remind us of how much we love each other. We’re looking forward to having one more Mrs. Forster (as of November 12) to love next year!

There were lots of opportunities to learn to share!

The reuniting of families at John and Johanna’s was fun, with lots of happy little girls hugging daddies, equally happy wives glad to see their sunburned husbands safely home, and fun pictures and stories of the guys’ escapades. I am SO blessed! Thank you, Lord, for blessing me with such a family! Thank You for redeeming us and making us Your own.

Bethany, Virginia, Katelyn, Ruby, Hannah, Nana, Katie, Johanna, finally SUSANNAH who was taking all the pictures, and Victoria

Thanks again, Susannah, for taking such great pictures!

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