We were so glad to see Caleb and Abby back safe and sound. The children posted themselves by the front window and at the first sound of the Honda driving up the driveway, the cry went abroad, "Caleb and Abby are here!" and the troops poured forth from the house to swamp the heroes of the day! We didn't cry, but we didn't stop hugging her for a long time. That was the LONGEST week in ages. We are GLAD they are back.
Abby's old "bed buddy" Caitlin was glad to have her back. Abby closed her eyes purposefully so the picture would be too bad to use on the Blog. Naughty girl!
The reason the newlyweds came out... besides the fact that we missed them and wanted to see them was to get both families together to open the gifts (and eat the leftovers from the reception!) Since C&A arrived before the rest of the guests, Abby downloaded the pictures she took from the honeymoon. I will not delve into that topic in this post, but Caleb put as much effort into planning that honeymoon as we put into planning the wedding and it paid off! What a blessed trip! They will carry those sweet memories as long as they live. (Some of the memories are literally sweet since they got to tour the Ben & Jerry's ice cream factory and graveyard where they buried dead flavors!) The photos were phenomenal so if you get by their place ask to see them. It will be worth the time spent.
The Beasley family arrived with heartfelt hellos for Caleb. The couple told some of their honeymoon stories over dinner. They had gone to Lake Placid, NY to the Olympic training facility and watched the US luge team practice. Mr. Beasley was especially interested to hear about their trip to see the spot where the "Miracle on Ice" occurred when the US Olympic team beat the Soviets at hockey back in 1980.
After dinner, we brought the couple into the living room to be seated in the chairs of honor surrounded by a heart shaped ring of gifts. They opened presents for an hour and a half nonstop and most of the time, both of them were opening at the same time. There were ALOT of presents. There were alot of cards too. We never counted the presents, but there were 49 cards as of the wedding and we got several more in the mail while they were gone.
Several of the favorite gifts included a joke book from Hillary Hipps and a plastic cup with a bow and an original poem composed on the spot at the reception by the imaginative Samuel Lyons. The poem is as follows:
I am Sam, Sam I am...
You do not care who I am.
Right now you're thinking about yourselves.
My advice to you is keep the Bible off the shelf.
Don't be afraid to say 'I'm wrong' -
It makes no difference wether you're wrong or right, Just make sure you say it before you say 'Goodnight'.
I hope you both do very well,
And always think each other's swell.
May you love each other all your days,
And may the LORD bless you in all your ways.
Anna Beasley and Aunt Linda won big with Abby when they got her Josh Groben's newest Christmas CD and a stereo to play it on.
Abby was also very pleased to get a monopoly game so she can practice up to beat those competitive Beasleys!
Caleb got lots of tools, all very welcome and useful.
His brother, Josh, and the other groomsmen got Caleb a shot gun to aid him in his roll as protector! Phillip was glad to show him the ins and outs of using it.
Cocking the weapon is enough to scare off any would be prowlers! It sounds lethal!
Dan, Dan, the banker man was challenged by Mr. Grady to keep a running total when they started opening cards. With all the help he got from little people shoving checks and gift cards at him right and left it's amazing he kept track of anything!
The little Honda was taxed to its capacious limits to get all the gifts home. I was glad to see it still had its newlywed accoutrements, cowbells, calligraphy stating they were just married and even bits of streamers that survived the rain! Parting is such sweet sorrow. I hope Abby made it home without crying. When she started this courtship, she thought to herself, "This is going to take some getting used to." Now, starting out on married life, she finds herself in the same position again. Instead of standing with rest of the Gradys waving good bye to Caleb, she is in the car leaving what was once her home to go to her new home with her new husband. Life goes on and starts a new cycle...but like she said those many months ago, "This is going to take some getting used to."