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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

The Best Weekend Ever

We just lived through a whirlwind weekend that may rank up there with the top five best ever. I’m not kidding! And I’ve had some humdingers, let me tell you.
We left Wichita at noon on Friday after picking up our kids at school. Yes, we allowed them to skip the last three hours of the school day. This made their weekend complete. The rest, for them anyway, was merely icing.
Friday night, we went to the 35th Heart of America Christmas Pageant at First Baptist Church of Raytown. When we lived in the KC area, I was in about 20 of them. The Hubster was probably in 15 and our boys were in two.
When we moved away 10+ years ago, it was one of the most difficult things to leave behind. When September rolled around that first year (yes, rehearsals start in September), I felt lost. I kept thinking I was forgetting something. Then I remembered: I didn’t have to go to Pageant rehearsal. I shed a lot of tears and wasn’t very kind to my fellow man. I’d like to say I’ve gotten better with time, but my fellow men would probably disagree.
We went to the Friday evening performance and I guess I stopped crying before the lights came on, but that’s not exactly true. So many emotions! Seeing all our old friends and their kids as they act out the story of Jesus’ birthday, life on earth, death and resurrection is an emotional roller coaster. We loved every minute of it. We visited with as many as we could and then headed back to our friends to rest up for the next day’s adventure.
Saturday, we left Blue Springs around noon to drive to a wedding in the little town of Halfway, Missouri. The GPS said we had plenty of time, so we stopped and grabbed a quick lunch. After we got on our way again, the GPS reset our arrival time for 5 minutes before the wedding was to start! The Type A in me started sweating and didn’t really recover until about Monday.
We made great time and were flying (at the speed limit) through Bolivar when we approached the town square. In unison, the Hubster and I yelled, “Oh no!” The annual Christmas parade was passing through the square and barricades were everywhere! Thankfully, I went to college in Bolivar and my own GPS of buried navigational memories kicked in. “Turn left! Go through this block! Turn right!” I barked and Hubster flew through town, skirting the square and making up time. We arrived at the beautiful wedding venue with three minutes to spare.
I’ve known Kim since we were seniors in high school. We met at Missouri All-State Choir and then got reacquainted in college and were roommates there and for a year after college. We’ve always kept in contact, sometimes closer than others, but have always been a part of each other’s lives.
After a devastating divorce and a lot of growing pains, Kim started dating a wonderful man named Joe. We met him about a year ago and knew he loved her. You know how you meet a couple and you just know they belong together? We couldn’t wait until they caught up with what the rest of us already knew and made it official.
The wedding was outside. Yes, it was December 13th, but what a perfect day! It was a little cloudy all day, but the temperature was in the 50s – a rare and beautiful treat in Missouri in December. Just as Kim and her dad entered the outdoor arbor, the sun broke through the clouds and angels sang (okay, we only heard angels in our heads, but they were there!). It was a beautiful ceremony and a fun reception. I wish I’d taken more pictures, but these will help you get the basic idea.
This is the "Twinkle Room" where the wedding took place. We all sat on benches and then moved our bench to a heated tent for the reception. Glorious!

This was the groom's hand on his newly pronounced wife's, um, side. Actually, when I first saw it, it was a little further south but he moved it before I could take a picture. I don't know why, but it made me giggle!
About 5pm, we jumped back in the van and drove home. I started doing a little math (that’s about all I’m capable of) and with the help of the odometer, figured we drove just a little over 650 miles in 34 hours.
It was worth every mile and every minute. The only thing that would have made it better? I wish we would have had time to watch the parade!