Family Ties

By Karen Isbell

I usually blog about personal reflections but want to balance it out a little with our personal life. Especially now that our little family is growing, there will be many more pictures to share!

This past weekend we were able to slip out of town and spend time with my family at the beach. I have been truly blessed to have a wonderful extended family. For as long as I can remember one week of each summer was spent on the beaches of Gulf Shores, AL with my cousins. Life has happened the past few summers and we were not able to all be together until this October. The relationship that my siblings and I have with my cousins is very unique to many. I grew up with two of my cousins living only a 1/2 mile away, while the other 2 were 9 hours. However, we have developed deep relationships over the years. Walking with each other spiritual revelations, standing beside each other in weddings, and praying and supporting each other as we have ventured into our adult lives. I am so thankful for the time my mom and aunts invested into all of us being together. Being an aunt is one of my greatest joys and I pray our children have the same relationships and memories with their cousins that I have.

The weekend ended in sorrow as we packed my brother to leave for Europe for 4 months, we were told my grandmother’s body was shutting down. She passed away only a few hours later. She was a strong woman, a fighter with a tender and gentle spirit.

Unfortunately most of the pictures from the weekend were just of our nieces and nephews but enjoy!

Viv opening her prize Checking out some butterfly wings in the water


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