A Summer of Making Memories Part 1

I guess it's appropriate that I write this on the unofficial last day of summer, Labor Day.  This was the last summer we had Rhiannon at home before college.  Of course she might be back for summers to come between years at school, but it's not guaranteed. I wanted this summer to be a great one full of memories we could all keep forever.

As I mentioned in my last post before summer, back in May, she left for the beach with her boyfriend and his family the day after graduation. I was happy she got to have that experience.

A few days after they got back, her boyfriend shipped out for Army Basic Training.

I know she missed him terribly, but we got her all to ourselves for the summer!

The Gazillion Bubble Show at Dollywood.  Really awesome!  We saw it on the first day of Great American Summer at the park.  We only got to go one more time during the GAC festival and saw the fireworks when the park closed at 10pm.  That was pretty cool. I can just imagine what it would be like to be on a roller coaster while they're going off.

 We went that last time with some great friends of ours.

 I look like a dork in every picture LOL!

And I love this big dork haha!

We will still get back to Dollywood more this year.  The fall festival is coming, and then they'll have the big Christmas lights thing.  Just wish we'd found time to ride the water rides when it was hot enough to get wet and dry off quickly!

Oh, on that same trip, we also stopped at the Bush factory store in Chestnut Hill, TN.  It's the original plant, and is still one of the only Bush plants running now.  It's huge, and the whole town smells like beans and cabbage LOL. The store though is AMAZING!  They had the CUTEST stuff.  All sorts of great stuff for a vintage kitchen (which I want!).  Will totally have to go back there when I get some spending money. We did let the girls pick out some candy from the big pick-your-own barrels. Then we got photos!

Other things that happened this year...

My family reunion (my brother and sister and their families, as well as my Dad's brothers and sisters and extended family.)

 My nephew's wife is a fantastic photographer, and took some great shots!

 Me with my sister, Connie, and brother, John.

 Rhiannon. :)

 My little family. Corina and Tyler couldn't make it, but I was glad to have Christopher and 3 of my girls there. (That's Mom's picture on the wall.)

We held the reunion at my sister's cafe that's named after our Mom.  She was certainly there with us in spirit. It was the biggest gathering we'd had of extended family (lots of folks not in these pics), which was funny since we'd decided to hold it at the cafe this year and it's the smallest venue yet.  So we were packed in there.  It was great fun though. Our great aunt (my grandmother's sister) was there, which was awesome.

My brother, sister, and me with our spouses, kids, their spouses and any grandkids. It was hard on my brother and his family, since this was the first family reunion since my brother's wife passed away.  We tried to keep him cheered up, and he did give our brother-in-law rabbit ears, so I think he was doing okay hehe.

I have so many more things to write about and photos to post, so I'll break it up into more than one post. Still have birthdays, Faelyn's trip to Berea college, the 4th of July, days at the lake, etc.

Hope y'all had a great Summer full of great memories too!