It was wonderful to spend time with my mom, brother, aunts, uncles, and cousins in New Mexico. My grandpa would’ve liked how nice the service was and that his simple requests were honored. He would’ve also liked knowing that we gathered together at the church for lunch and had a great time of fellowship. One of his favorite meals was a good plate of barbecue, so we had beef, chicken, beans, potatoes, cole slaw, jalapeño corn muffins, biscuits, and three kinds of cobbler from a place in town he liked — called Can’t Stop Smokin’.
Hey listen. I don’t know if that place caters too many funerals with a name like that, but we were good with it. Grandpa loved Jesus.
Later, back at the house, we discovered a bunch of old photo albums (packed in a suitcase for an emergency). Bittersweet to look through the albums, yet each photo served as another reminder to not take family for granted. Each day with our loved ones is a gift.
I was gone for 4 days and very thankful to be there. My mom and I flew into Roswell, NM, and saw our share of UFO merchandise in the storefronts. Her family used to live in Roswell for a long time, but surprisingly their home decor didn’t include inflatable green aliens. I was tickled by those aliens and wondered who on earth would buy a souvenir larger than a Volkswagon. I don’t even want to know.
We visited and ate and had a good time. It was actually a wonderful getaway in the mountains. For the first time in a while I felt quiet and still. I went running with my aunts and cousins one morning and the weather was nice and cool. We got to experience the feel of a good mountain thunderstorm that afternoon. We saw various wildlife up close like deer, turkeys, and a bear wandering up the hill.
I asked my cousin’s husband, Earl, to share some Duck Dynasty stories with me to take home to my kids. The Robertson family are good friends of theirs and they used to serve in ministry together in Louisiana. Max loved hearing those stories, and I loved hearing how the family is just as real, funny, and down to earth as they appear on the show.
While I was gone, Mike was Super Dad. He worked from home and still took care of the kids, homeschooled, ran them to their various activities, handled church stuff, and wrote a final paper for his class. It was a lot but everyone survived just fine without me and they even made me those awesome Mother’s Day cards that I will keep forever.
I’ll also remember this story forever: On Saturday I asked Max what they had for dinner that night. He said “Wendy’s.” After a pause, he continued, “we had to eat Wendy’s because we were sick of eating pizza three nights in a row.”