Thursday, August 3, 2017


We took a trip down the Platt River with the Rozegnals. (My dad's siblings and family)

That seems like such a small statement for such an event. We were part of an epically complicated logistical puzzle that culminated in a gigantic raft-a-palooza down the Platte River with 28 garrulous Rozegnals and their adoptees, squirt guns, and two barge floats.  We experienced uncounted looks from strangers who passed by our loud barge-party, resembling the looks I receive in the grocery store when I shop with ALL my kids in tow.  Adults mounted and dismounted the floats most ungracefully, while the kids were on and off, swimming and pulling and towing and even flipping their Nana over completely. (This writer will neither confirm nor deny the mom-inspired nature of these shenanigans.)  The Great Aunts tried to learn my children’s names and had an especially hard time with the boys; this was made more difficult by Seth who pretended to be Marcus for a large part of the trip. He was punished by the river later; a leech latched onto his toe.

After two hours, the Platte River spilled us out on the beach; the sparkling water of Lake Michigan tossed about every color of blue in its cool waves; in the distance, dunes (Sleeping Bears), and at our feet, the softest sand on the planet.  We opened heavy coolers and feasted together right there by the water.  The cold water of the lake made the channel feel like a hot tub; the girls played, then relaxed, then played again. The boys learned to kayak; the littlest one got carried away by the wind and hit a stranger with his paddle at least twice. Aunt Lisa began her sandcastle art; soon she had helpers so committed they asked me if we could stay on the beach forever. My active uncles played ball and squirt guns and talked marathons and mountain biking with the boys. And then, we all ate some more while the wind blew and our skin grew pink.

See these people, kids?  I come from these, and they are a piece of home to me; just like the sands of Lake Michigan. Watching you relate to them and watching them delight in you, I thank God for the gift of family.

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