Last Sunday morning we left early for Minnesota, first going to worship with our son Mark and grandson Noah at their awesome church. So satisfying for a thirsty soul. After lunch we headed east to Stillwater MN for our great-niece's wedding. Katie is my sister Jan's granddaughter and my nephew Bob's girl. It was a chilly day and the wedding service and reception was on the top of the Stillwater library. Even with the need for coats it was a lovely venue for a wedding with a view of the Mississippi River.
A beautiful view with the Mississippi
River speckled by boats in the distance
Bride Katie with dad Bob
We spent the night at a hotel in Hudson, another great little river town, having brunch the next morning with family at a nice local cafe and bakery. We headed north soon after,but first we made our way over to another town to watch a treasure run in cross country at a local golf course. Fun! Tuesday I stuck around the farm and later was able to see another treasure play soccer, while Joel went on a 22 mile bike ride on a great trail connected to his home town. Then he went to the visitation of a Dahlen family friend who had died. Bob S. had one request before his death, that Joel officiate at his funeral, so Wednesday morning we went to Joel's home church. My husband has a gift in this area, and it was a beautiful service.
We had plans to head home Thursday to get ready for the next wedding by Red Wing MN. (Another river town), but the grands talked us into staying, although it did not take much encouragement! So Thursday Joel went riding on another trail and I continued observing the harvest going on outside. There is something beautiful and so right about the work being done, the fields changing as the crops yield their bounty, the farmer focused on the task at hand....covered in corn dust as he stops in for a quick meal.
Friday morning we headed back to Joel's home town for a few hours. Saturday we all took off for the wedding and arrived 4 plus hours later at our hotel in Red Wing. Beautiful little town, with great history and of course they are well known for their Red Wing Pottery and Red Wing shoes/boots. We shared a hotel room with our daughter and her treasures.....they were great roomies!
Another beautiful wedding. this one set out on a farm~ an open venue with chickens, sheep, and one affectionate cat joining in on the celebration. The pews were out on the grass overlooking a field and hills.....It was lovely and the weather cooperated. My brother Todd not only saw his oldest daughter being married, but celebrated that same day the birth of his first grandchild, a boy. His other daughter, who was to be in the wedding, was in the hospital instead birthing her first child. An amazing day all around!
Some of the wedding guests
Heather and Dan
As I look back on the past week, I cannot help but reflect on life and on death. Two couples making a commitment to each other "til death do us part". A funeral where we celebrated a life while grieving a loss through death. And a new baby coming into this world in the midst of his Auntie's wedding plans. A little boy, precious to his parents and so many others, with a life full of adventures ahead of him. Time marches on, as we can attest to this past week.
In this season of our life, while looking with clarity at what is eventually to come, the last week has us in deep discussion. We ask ourselves, what do we desire, what adventures lay ahead for us, what challenges? Life can be complicated and often, so is death. There are those mundane days that make us restless, and those action packed days that make us long for the mundane. Breathing in and breathing out, this journey called life.
Walking this journey called life
It was a good week with family and friends. Celebrations of many kinds, with tears of joy and tears of sadness, our quota of hugs well met. Filled with memories we step back into our daily living and give thanks for a life well lived, two marriages starting, and a new life beginning. We give thanks for each sunrise. All and all it was a good week.