Blossoms of family

Magnolia blossoms

How often do we pause to reflect that our family can be as precious as a blooming tree?

The blossoms of family

How often do we remember to give thanks for the blossoms of our family, the precious blooms of our connection?

Old house on Main Street in Yale; blooming magnolia

It’s good to be home among some of my family.  Some members are scattered across the blue and green earth (one as far away as Singapore–oops–guess she’s in New Zealand this weekend!)  Others are in California and New York City and Georgia and at least one was attending the Downtown Hoedown at the Detroit Riverfront this weekend.  (Missed you, Tianna!)

Family

My brothers, Mom and Dad and I told old stories at our family gathering last night.  Poor sisters-in-law Michele and Karen had to listen to our long-ago stories.  Such as the time Tim was almost struck by a semi as he slept in the back seat of our family station wagon on a trip home from Florida. 

And of course the tale about how Kathy fell out of the car at age four.  My dad had just pulled out from a small store and was driving maybe ten miles an hour and Kathy leaned against the door–Tim says we were arguing and has felt bad since that day–wow, a new twist to the story!–and fell out of the door which was not completely shut.  I bounced along on the gravel and had a very sore rear end, but lived to hear the story repeated at family gatherings for half a century.  (Although family history debates the actual age of Kathy.  Since Kathy is writing the blog, she’s saying she was four.  Others disagree.  No proof exists either way.)

Up close blossom

Gosh, we shared the old stories last night!  We took so many trips as a family when young.  Back in the days before mandatory seat belts, we slept in the folded-down backseat of our family station wagon.  We went out west two or three times, aiming that station wagon toward the Grand Canyon.  We once drove out to Maine where my dad got very sick on seafood.  The entire saga, with sound effects, was shared yet again last night.

A family blossom up close~~my brother, Scot

(Now you see, perhaps, why I am overly fond of travel.  It was a seed planted in our family way way back…)

Scattered blossoms

Our families grow, we stretch, we hopefully learn to accept and honor the differences in our personalities as well as celebrate what we have in common.  Our families are the roots of an ancient tree which send blossoms out into the big wide world.

Another precious blossom~~my mom

It has been another wonderful visit.  I am so very grateful for my family.  All of them.

Blossoms reaching to the sky

For yesterday’s memories.

Thumbs up & a grin from another special blossom--my dad--because he's a thumbs up sort of guy

And tomorrow’s new blossoms.

About Kathy

I live in the middle of the woods in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Next to Lake Superior's cold shores. I love to blog.
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38 Responses to Blossoms of family

  1. Elisa's Spot says:

    I’m glad you had fun!

  2. Nice. Always a special time to relive the memories!

    • Kathy says:

      Hi Patti. It was one of those evenings when we drifted back to earlier years and relived all those crazy and different and special times. Nice to see you!

  3. Susan Derozier says:

    Kathy – These blossoms are breathtaking (human AND floral) How fortunate you are to still have your parents and siblings to celebrate and enjoy. What a wonderful touch of HOME! (am curious what is on your mother’s plate?) Those carpets of blossoms are like a dream and the scent must have been awesome!

    • Kathy says:

      Thank you, Susan. I am very very fortunate to still have all my familial blossoms still within traveling distance. That knowing is what keeps providing the incentive to visit as often as possible. Funny you should ask about what was on Mom’s plate! Barry asked the same question, too, and couldn’t figure it out. They were raw onions cut in big round slices. She made a “pulled pork” recipe–kind of like barbecued pork–on buns. Onions, optional. Even this mostly-vegetarian liked it.

  4. Oh Kath….my Mom was a thumbs up sort of woman. I have learned that hand gesture has ancient symbolism and is connected to several different rituals…all having to do with the Divine and our collaboration. I love that you have been seeing that gesture from across rooms, connecting your Dad and you with such love and admiration. Mom used that gesture until just before she died, when she could not speak, she could give someone thumbs up.
    I love your bouquet of cherishing today.
    Thank you for introducing me to so many of your family, especially your brother.
    And the magnolias.

    I am sending you tons of love. Travel safely, Love, S

    • Kathy says:

      Hi there, Suzi. How fascinating about the thumbs-up gesture. As I was pulling out of the driveway, Dad put both of his thumbs up in the air to say goodbye. This gesture seems to have been adopted by him in the last few years. How sweet that your mom used that. I am feeling tears. Glad to be able to introduce you. Sorry I didn’t get a good close-up of my brother, Tim. Thanks for the travel wishes. They worked. 🙂

  5. sonali says:

    Lovely post! Its nice that you all had a get-together. The house is pretty and neat. The magnolias are very pretty, nice view it is from your house. Family is a gift! 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      Hello, dear Sonali. Don’t they have a pretty house? We moved there when I was five years old, so it’s been around a long time. Glad you enjoyed. I hope you get to see your family often, too.

  6. Jessica says:

    You have a beautiful family. I can literally feel the love in these photos. Thanks for sharing your blossoms with us. 😀

  7. Brenda Hardie says:

    Kathy what beautiful and funny memories…what a lovely tribute to your family! I love the warm feeling you captures in the pictures of your family and the I can almost smell the fragrance of the magnolias. You mentioned your Dad being a thumbs up kind of guy…my Mom was sort of like that…she loved that song “Don’t worry, be happy” and her philosophy was to always smile, say a prayer and hug each other (she was big on hugs 🙂 )I miss her. Thank you for sharing a few of your memories (I also remember back in the day before seat belts, sleeping in the back of a station wagon on family trips…but ever more I remember being packed like sardines in the backseat of our Opal or Datsun, trying to get some sleep as Dad drove through the night to arrive at our destinations (usually someplace warm and tropical!) lol..yep we went from a full size station wagon to a teeny tiny 2 door car! First it was the red Opal and after that was a blue Datsun…Dad wanted to save on gas!! Happy memories for sure!
    Enjoy your family time Kathy…treasure every moment 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      Brenda, what sweet memories you shared here. I love that you often traveled to some place warm & tropical (we went to Florida a couple of times in elementary school, but flew both times.) Glad you remember what it was like in the station wagon backseats. Feeling what it must feel like to lose a precious hugging mom. Tears… Glad you enjoyed and I am trying to take the advice to treasure every precious moment.

  8. Tammy McLeod says:

    What a lovely post! I love the photos of the scattered blossoms to and love the analogy of flowers and family.

    • Kathy says:

      Thanks, Tammy. When I saw all the pics of the magnolia blossoms and the pics of family, it just seemed natural that they should be interspersed, reflecting one another. Blessings to you and your family!

  9. Dawn says:

    What a wonderful family time you had! Glad you survived falling out of the car, and your brother didn’t get struck by the semi. Our family did the same kind of traveling when we were little. And we were always arguing about which of the four of us got to sit in “the way back” of the station wagon. Hard to believe we all survived those days of no seat belts!

    • Kathy says:

      Hard to believe, isn’t it, Dawn? Now I wouldn’t dream of getting in a car without a seatbelt! Actually, it was meeting Barry that made me a seatbelt fan. He declared it was a necessity (He used to be a dune buggy and mini-bike driver and knew all about crashes.) Glad you did this kind of family adventuring when you were young, too.

  10. holessence says:

    Kathy – Thank you for including us in your beautiful family gathering. The vibes feel so down-to-earth good.

  11. Aww, sounds like a wonderful visit, and I bet time went by MUCH too fast! It’s so much fun, telling (and listening to) old stories.
    Beautiful Magnolias.

    • Kathy says:

      Glad you enjoyed, Micheala. Gosh the time went by fast. One minute I had arrived and the next it was time to go. No time to get bored! It was fun…

  12. Sybil says:

    I love the photo metaphor of the petals on the ground …

    It’s wonderful that you still have your parents and love and appreciate them and they know it.

    Faith, Hope and Love … but the GREATEST of these is LOVE.

    Thanks for sharing your love with us.

    • Kathy says:

      Sybil, so glad to share the love with all of you. Wishing everyone still had their parents~~learning to honor this precious moment of love even more. Blessings to you!

  13. Colleen says:

    Lovely, lovely, lovely….all of it, all of you!!

  14. Susan D says:

    Smiling largely about your memories and your family blossoms. Thinking of the similarity of stories families share and once again feeling how those stories bring us closer together in our larger family. I could hear the laughter and feel the textures of people and objects through your photos. Wonderful. Noticing, too, the difference between magnolias in FL vs MI. I didn’t even know magnolias grew in MI. Wow. They are so pink compared to the creamy white ones in the south. I can smell them, no matter what. Thank you for sharing your precious family with us! You will return to sunshine and the incredible colors of Spring 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      Susan, I am sure hoping they ARE magnolias! (My mama said they were, and I believe everything my mama says.) I can identify apple blossoms, but that’s all. She does know plants and trees, so she’s probably right, though. I have seen the different looking ones down south. I am also fascinated about what stories get passed down the generational tracks. It’s not the normal everyday stories, but the ones that had some zing, some drama, something out of the ordinary. Don’t you think?

  15. barb says:

    Lovely post about appreciation for Family, Kathy. I’m sure glad you survived to tell it. (No car seat boosters or seat belt in those long ago days…)

  16. Looks (and sounds) like a great time! Family is the most important thing in the world – took me quite some time to realize that!

    • Kathy says:

      Holly, you’re not alone. I think it takes many of us a long time to realize it. Some have to recover from their childhood before they can embrace it.

  17. Carol says:

    Such a lovely post with such lovely photos!

  18. Marianne says:

    I can’t believe it, Kathy, you feel out of a moving vehicle as well. It happened to me when I was about six. I was in the front seat and the door wasn’t closed properly. My mom drove around a corner and I fell out onto the cement island in the middle of the intersection. I wasn’t badly hurt though.

    Beautiful family story and photos!

    • Kathy says:

      YOU fell out of a moving vehicle, TOO? We are indeed bonded for life. So very glad you survived, too! Phew…close calls… And thanks for your kind words.

  19. Elle says:

    Those were some lovely pictures. Reminds me of family gatherings we used to have in my family. Good memories! Thank you.

    • Kathy says:

      Elle, I’m getting to the place in my life where it’s simply appreciation for every visit we have left together. Time flies by so quickly! Bless you.

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