This weekend was filled with adventures and memorable moments. Perhaps Jacob, our nephew, summed it up the best in his prayer on breakfast this morning, "We've had a lot of fun with Uncle Dammie and Aunt Melissa and Phoebe's a really cute dog!" Sammie's older brother Dave lives with his wife Carolyn and their 4.5 kids in Lake Jackson, just south of Houston. We traveled through pretty back roads on Friday afternoon, arriving at their beautiful brick home in time for smoked ribs and grilled vegetables. (HOW COME NOBODY HAS EVER INTRODUCED ME TO GRILLED CORN?! I'VE HAD A DEPRIVED LIFE UNTIL NOW!) The next morning, "Dammie" and I went to the Houston temple and then drove by Clear Lake, where Sammie grew up. We parked in front of his old house, walked around the back to see the gazebo and deck he helped build with his Dad, brothers, and Todd (the carpenter they hired to do the job) and gazed into the bayou where Sammie used to see alligators and water moccasins. He also drove me by the KFC where he used to work, his junior high, his high school, and the parking garage where he and his friends rappelled down the side. That evening included swimming, meeting Aunt Mary, Cuban sandwiches, strawberry shortcake, and the Far Side movies. (Yes Boyers! They exist!) This morning, we went to the Brazosport ward to check out the rumors of a new bishop in town. Indeed, Dave had been made bishop the week before. Sammie celebrated this important milestone in his brother's life by making faces at him from the audience. We were also there for Carolyn's first Sunday School lesson. I think she's relieved to trade in her 6:00 a.m. seminary kids for a room full of adults once a week. She began the lesson by saying, "I taught seminary all year. So when I ask a question, keep in mind that I'm not scared of silence!"
This picture was taken as Sammie and I tried to watch the kids while Dave set Carolyn apart for her new calling. Sammie ended up as a jungle gym... Will's on his head, Jacob's on his right foot, and Matt's on his left.Sammie's greatest church adventure, though, involved taking Jacob to the boy's room. When Jacob asked Sammie to take him, he assured him that it was only #1. Carolyn said he'd only need help washing his hands. All the way down the hall, Jacob chanted, #1! #1! #1! However, as he pushed open the bathroom door, he smiled up at Sammie and chanted, #2! Let's just say Sammie took another important step towards fatherhood today.
After a yummy crepe lunch, some coloring, and a walk around the block with Phoebe, we said our goodbyes and made our way back to Austin. Thanks Dave, Carolyn, Will, Matt, Melanie, and JJ! We love you!