The week after Matt and Janille's wedding, the entire Stephens family was blessed to spend a few days all together in Hot Springs, AR. We are only able to be all together like this once every few years or so... the last time was in 2008 in Port Sanilac, MI. With our family's plans to move to Angola next year, who knows when the next time will be? So, we try to take advantage of times like this. We packed a lot into five days, and after sifting through all the photos from multiple cameras, these are my top ten:
Story-time with the older kids
Stephen reading books with Babu!
Bumper boats at a local family fun center. We also did go-carts and played mini-golf here.
One day we went to a park for a picnic lunch. Stephen and Aunt Janille had a lot of fun on the slide.
And some of the group played a round of disc golf.
We always play lots of games. This was our game of Scotland Yard... Rusty makes a great Mr. X!
And the kiddos enjoyed having a rousing pillow fight with Babu!
Cousins -- the best picture we have of all of them together! Currently, their ages are 5, 4, 3, 2, and 1!
A toast to Matt and Janille with Bitter Lemons from Kenya! (Rusty found them at an African imports store in Nashville.) I have to say that there is nothing more refreshing on a hot day than one of these babies, ice cold.
This toast followed right after we presented Matt and Janille with our family's wedding gift to them, a Year of Monthly Date Nights! This idea was Rusty's brain child, and then I took it and ran with it, coming up with the 12 "themes." My sister and my mom both thought it was a cool idea, so they went in on it with us. Basically, the idea was to give Matt and Janille one "date night" per month for the first year of their marriage -- a perfect gift for a young couple just starting out, both of them still in school. I will share in greater detail about this gift idea later, but I don't want to give too much away at this point since Matt and Janille will be opening the gifts one month at a time. After their first anniversary next July, I will share the 12 themes and the contents of each package.