What Do You See Outside YOUR Open Window Today?

What Do You See Outside YOUR Open Window Today?
Remember: "When God closes a door, He always opens a window!" You never know what might be out there waiting for you!

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Wonderful Celebration of Life

Dear Blogging Friends:
It appears that I am becoming a "once a week" blogger these days. Seems like we have been staying so busy (in our retired life) that I just don't have the time I used to have to read and write.  Maybe that's a good thing, but then again, I miss my time with you! I do try to get around and read what you've been writing a little at a time, but it seems like I just can't keep up...so please know that I value each and every one of you and look forward to hearing about your events and projects as well...so please don't give up on me!

This past weekend we had the joy and pleasure of traveling north to North Carolina for a family reunion.  This is the second year in a row that we have made this trip to where my brother Clifford and his family lives within a mile or so of each other...and we have had such a great time that it may become an annual event...as long as us "old folks" can keep going!  It was fun to see the younger generation enjoying being together, so we hope they will keep it going even when we are no longer "available".

Here are some highlights from our trip and gathering:

The whole gang gathered together around the firepit (before the fire was lit...that came later...), and here was where we shared a lot of special memories...

A special part of our gathering was to have a "celebration of life" for my older brother Russell, who passed away this past April after battling leukemia for several months. This casual family setting is exactly what Russell wanted us to do. He knew this reunion was planned before he passed away, and he suggested that this would be the time for his memorial rather than some other time. And so we honored his wishes and gathered together to enjoy being family, doing the things that our family loves to do together:  (Warning: Lots of photos to check out!)

Making homemade ice-cream

Some people really get their whole body into the action...
 Everyone has to take a "turn", literally, if you want to eat some of the ice-cream!

We also celebrated my brother Clifford's 75th birthday,

along with a viewing of the old family slide show...a family tradition from way back when...
Where it all began... The Mursch Family circa 1953 (I'm the redhead in front) We were all dressed up in our Easter finery, having dinner with family after church

A Horseshoe Competition:
 Again, this is serious business and strong tradition:

And then a newer addition to the traditional competition is Corn Hole...

Something for all ages...ping-pong competition:

Also hammock "hiding"..


Lots of visiting, preparing food, eating the food...

And of course, eating the ice-cream...

Firepit time and s'mores...

And time to let the fire burn down and say good night...

Yes, it was a celebration that my brother would have loved, and we truly missed his presence...but we felt his presence there with us in a way...in the way his children/grandchildren laughed and played...his wife relaxed and enjoyed the time with the extended family...everyone knew it was exactly right. 

Here's a few pictures of my brother enjoying life with us in the past:  Playing corn-hole (with my hubby); (2012)

Cooking the Christmas turkey in his smoker (2012)

And the beautiful boat he was building the last couple of years of his life...it was almost completed, but now Russell is sailing away in the glassy seas of heaven. 

Yes, it was a wonderful celebration of life. I found myself rather tongue-tied when it came time to share special memories, and I only told one silly story from childhood.  But in reality, I truly appreciated the man my brother became. He was a person who truly enjoyed life and accomplished many wonderful things. He was a man of integrity and what I'd call a man with "true grit".  He is truly missed by all who knew and loved him.  I look forward to seeing him again someday on heaven's shores.

I guess that is all for tonight. We've had some other special things happen this week, but I think I will save that for another post...maybe I'll actually write more than once this week!! Thank you for hanging in there with me in this very family photo'd post.   As you can see, it was a special time, and we are so thankful to have such a loving family. We don't always agree on everything...does any family? But when we come together, we know how to laugh, love and live like families should. I give all the credit to our godly parents, who set a very strong example of Christ-likeness in how they taught us and raised us.  They would be proud to see that we honor them in this way as well.

Good-night...and go hug your family while you can...


  1. What a wonderful blessing to be able to gather as a family and celebrate love and memories!! I surely do miss our family gatherings. I love seeing the ice cream freezers being cranked and know how good that ice cream tastes!! It is so good to catch up with you and your news, Pam!! Love & hugs!

  2. Wonderful family photos and memories Pamela. I'm so glad you were able to get together with your loving family members. It is something my family never did so we only saw each other at other big life events. It is always wonderful to see everyone no matter how long or short. Don't worry about posting once a week. I think many of us are at the stage where we blog less often or only once a week. I know I certainly am and that is from formerly blogging about 5x per week when I first started. It is nice to follow and read other blogs though it is much harder to continue following when people drop off and maybe post once a year or every other year! I've seen many of those and I hope not to become one, lol. God bless. xx

  3. Beautiful post, Pam! The pictures of your family are such fun. I was especially intrigued with the idea of hiding inside a hammock. It looked like one might have trouble unwinding themselves if not careful!! Ha-ha!

  4. Nice reunion. Glad to see the fun you all had.

  5. Such a wonderful blessing to gather with your family like this Pamela! What a wonderful way to honor your brother's memory! It is so much fun to gather, share memories, and play together too. A blessed event indeed! Blogging has definitely slowed down for me, especially during the summer months, although I hope to find time to visit my dear friends again now that Fall/Winter are here :) Hugs and love to you sweet friend, I really enjoyed all the happy sweet pictures you shared :)

  6. Good Morning, I enjoyed the pictures so much. So thankful you had this opportunity to fellowship and remember your brother. My dad and I always loved to play horseshoes. Making home-made ice cream brings back sweet memories from my childhood too! I hope you have a lovely day. xo

  7. Wonderful Family post and photos Pamela. We used to have year family reunions when my Mom was alive. Family came from all over the map and we would meet in many New York upstate parks and basically do the same thing your family does. 5 generations of us. Thanks for sharing. Many blessings my friend.

  8. What a wonderful post, Pam. You are truly blessed to have such a great family. I so enjoyed looking in on you as your celebrated your brother's life. May God continue to bless you.

  9. Loved being at your family reunion through your pictures. It touches my heart to see family coming together for fellowship and making precious memories. I think maybe God gave your brother a glimpse of it all, knowing you were remembering him.

  10. What a wonderful way to honor and remember your precious brother, Pamela! Like you, I feel that's exactly what he would have wanted. The photos are excellent, too, my friend!
    And yes, I understand how busy life can get, even in retirement. Once a week is absolutely fine, if that's all you have time for. You are always in my thoughts and prayers.

  11. I enjoyed those photos. Have a nice weekend.

  12. Hey, ice cream churning is a big thing/job (big smiles). I so enjoyed this post, Pamela. Thank you, smiles

  13. Looks like a wonderful time with loved ones as you celebrated your brother's life.

    Pamela, you have such a beautiful smile!!

  14. What a wonderful blessing to be able to celebrate life and family in this way!

    Love and blessings!


Thank you for visiting here today. I would love for you to sign my guestbook and let me know you stopped by. I always enjoy reading your comments and words of encouragement! May you be blessed as you go on your way. Please come back and visit again soon.