Let me introduce to a few of the people in my crazy amazing family.
Grandpa. No one can ever accuse my grandpa of being a slacker. When he visits my parents at their acreage, he can't wait to get out and help mom with all kinds of handyman projects. He may not be able to do it all, but I am constantly impressed by the amount of practical knowledge that he has. He is also very opinionated, and very happy to share his opinion. He used to be a banker, so you can imagine that we heard a few views on the economy this weekend. He loves to golf, and he golfs almost year round on their little local 9 hole course that he helps mow. One of my other favorite things about my grandpa is the way he sings in church: out loud. Mind you, he has a singing voice a crow wouldn't envy, but that does not stop him from participating. It is truly a joyful noise.
Grandma. When I think of Grandma, I think of quilting. She loves to quilt. I don't think that she started until she was a few years older than I am now, but it has become an art form for her. I love the way that she puts together colors and shapes. I am amused sometimes how she will interrupt any conversation to pull you aside and show you one of the projects that she has been talking about. I would love to have one of the large quilts that she has made, but she doesn't have time to make one for each of her 26 grandkids. She has been making sure that we each have one smaller project that she has made. Mine is a wall hanging that I got for my graduation.
Dad lives by the words that you have to get older, but you can be immature forever. He's really pretty mature (we won't burst his bubble by telling him that), but he does think that burping and farting are still funny. Age really is just a number for him. He's more fit than he has been in a long time. He will tell you that he has had 31 years of married bliss to my mom... and that she is up to 7 or 8 years of marital bliss now. He loves to garden and work out on the acreage. He loves to joke, but he is much less likely to open his mouth to spill his guts.
Mom is always busy and always moving. She doesn't like to watch TV because she would rather be getting something done. Get her a good book, though, and you couldn't blast her out of a chair with a stick of dynamite. My mom has a lot to do with what my faith is today. I remember a time that we were pretty typical Catholic pew warmers, but then she was set on fire with a real love for God and brought us along for the ride. Eventually it became our own decision, but she really instigated it. I also appreciate the way that she presented the differences between her (Catholic) side of the family and Dad's (Protestant) side of the family. I don't remember specific conversations, but she was made sure that we understood though we may not go to the same church, we worship the same God and have essentially the same faith. On the other hand, she also made sure that we knew the reasons that we were Catholic and why the churches were not interchangeable. How's that for a balancing act!
Clearly there are a lot more people in this family of mine, but that's probably enough for now. I'm sure there's more to come.