On Wednesday, we hopped on a flight and ventured east to south Louisiana to visit the kinfolk of the Beloved. We had not been there in two years, and we last saw much of the bunch on a Florida vacation nearly 18 months ago.

Upon arrival, the Beloved’s mother picked us up from the airport and we went to Drago’s for some charbroiled oysters. And let me just say, if you are ever in the New Orleans area they are worth stopping for. After a quick lunch, we crossed the causeway and headed deep, deep, deep into the woods of south Louisiana, which is practically almost to Mississippi, so you can only imagine.

Since families were going in different directions on Thursday, we broke bread on Wednesday night. In all, it was about fourteen of us, a mixture of siblings, cousins, and their kids joined together at maw-maw’s for Thanksgiving Dinner. We packed into whatever crevasse we could find and ate yummy traditional Thanksgiving foodies. In fact, the only reason it wasn’t an all out gluttonfest is because, well, had we done so, no one would have been able to leave the house, until like, today. Because isn’t it just a rule that grandmother’s house is the smallest house with the shortest ceiling that you could possibly gather? And that’s all-natural obesity prevention RIGHT THERE.

The kids were entertaining, as always. There were only, let me count, NO TANTRUMS! Those that could perform did so, as evidenced by these two doing an encore of Jesus Take The Wheel. Their ability to recall – and sing in key – multitudes of lyrics really makes you want to be careful about what you say in their earshot.

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The rest of them just looked cute, like our niece, here piercing us with those gorgeous blue eyes (and the Beloved doing the same, in hazel).

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Or like our nephew, here, having a tea party – wearing the colors of the national flag of Louisiana: camoflauge. Proof right there that decency still exists what with the courtesy to wear matching duck hunting boots to tea.

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We all stayed up way too late. And when I slinked off to bed just before midnight, three generations of the Beloved – she, her mom, and her mom’s mom – were just getting started with their local gossip chatter in the kitchen. It was a wonderful sound to be lulled to sleep to, that sound of history and generations meshing together in voice.

Next day, we mostly relaxed and visited. We did take a drive to the Beloved’s stepmother’s mother’s house. It is a good thing I trust the Beloved, you know, with my life.  Because I swear, getting from one place to another out there is so obscure you could dump bodies.  It was something like: take a left onto the highway at maw-maw’s, then drive to some two-lane road, which is paved. Then take a left at around the third fence. Drive down the gravel road past the pine forest. Pass a cemetery, two farm houses, and two curves and it’ll be the third house on the left. There are no lights and no street signs. You must go from memory. I took my camera and had fun walking around in the cold weather taking pictures, but I’ll have to post those another time.

I’ll leave this post with this photo, taken Friday morning before we left for New Orleans, of some first cousin’s once removed whence the kiddles dropped by maw-maw’s with their play gear in tow. I caught the pair of siblings in a moment of fairy-taking-the-builder-on-a-picnic.

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More to come…

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