Californy is the Place You Oughta Be!

I’ve been home from California for five days. And I still haven’t given you a good recap of our week. It wasn’t one of those big event-driven weeks. We didn’t even *gasp* go to Disneyland. But what we did was spend some good quality time as a family.

My dad has 4 sisters. They’ve lived in California as long as I can remember (they lived in TX awhile, too) and for several years (like 8 or more) we didn’t see them at all. Then the last few years, I guess with the oldest cousins all getting married, we’ve been seeing each other every year. And I can’t describe how wonderful it is.

My only family in Atlanta is my aunt and one cousin. So, to see a big huge group of 20+ family members is a blast. I love discovering that one of my cousins has the same little toe as me, or likes the same kind of things I do, or hearing someone laugh just like Daddy.

This week, our main focus was the rehearsal dinner and wedding for my oldest boy cousin, Paul. We had the rehearsal dinner at my Aunt Carol’s house. And it was gorgeous. Just look at the flowers that were the centerpieces!

and they smelled heavenly!

Of course, it was about 100 degrees during the rehearsal dinner, but with a view like this, it’s kinda hard to complain. (Even though I did my fair share.)

can you believe how gorgeous?!

The wedding the next day was gorgeous. Two of my cousins were bridesmaids, two of my (?) cousin-in-laws were groomsmen and 3 of of my 2nd cousins were the flowergirls & ringbearer!

my cousins are the 2nd & 3rd from the left. beautiful!

Paul and his bride, Tera cried the entire time which made me do the same. And one of my favorite things was that she wore the bracelet I wore in my wedding! It was a gift from my (and Paul’s) grandmother who died in 2006. It was special to see it on her wrist.

this is just after the kiss...they're still crying!

After all the wedding bidness was over, it was time for some hang out time. Daddy had all the smallest girl cousins over for a slumber party.

how amazingly cute are they?

We swam at Aunt Carol & Uncle Joe’s pool, where he put dishwashing detergent in the jacuzzi for a little extra fun.

my bro, Jason, Lydia and cousin

But my favorite picture of the week, was all the cousins in a long line–in birth order. And who’s at the front? ME! Those are the privileges of being the firstborn. (It doesn’t take much to make my happy, obviously.)

I'm the first!!

If I ever get my Disney Cruise done on my vacation blog, I’ll tackle this vacation next. I took some pretty good pictures of all our food. Because I know, that’s what you totally wanted to see most.


  1. I have like 200 cousins on my mother’s side of the family. It’s crazy! She had 14 siblings! Yikes :)…
    The pics are all so cute. I’m glad you had such a nice family time.
    I did miss you.

  2. Oh and the bubbles? What fun!!! Isn’t it hard to get rid of them though? (I’ve been fighting our stupid pools levels of alkalinity and ph and chlorine and stablilizer for weeks now! yikes and double yikes!)

  3. The detergent in the jacuzzi looks awesome!

    I’m glad you had such a good time. You were missed!

  4. Wow, are those all first cousins? I have 13 first cousins on my mom’s side but we’re all almost grown now (the youngest is 17). But now we’re making batches of new little cousins so it’s fun. 🙂 I guess they are my cousins-once-removed? I could never figure that one out.

  5. I love the line up of cousins, especially b/c it starts with a prego lady and ends with a baby in a car seat! ha! 🙂

  6. Great pics!! I love the last pic. sooo sweet!

  7. I love that photo in the jacuzzi! :)Re

  8. That picture of all the cousins is awesome. How cool to have such a big family!

  9. What an attractive family! Is that bad that that’s the first thing I thought of when I saw that line of your cousins? haha I love big family get-togethers! So fun!!!
    Also, I’m glad you reviewed Wall-E! Your review was great and now I can’t wait to see it!

  10. What a fun picture with all the cousins! My dad was one of 12, so there are cousins I don’t even know exist! How nice to be part of a big family that’s still not so big that you don’t all know one another.

  11. Oh that picture of you and all your cousins is great! Love the yellow bridesmaid dresses – so pretty and fresh. I love visiting California too!

  12. Amanda, what a wonderful family trip!!! We just (2 weeks ago) got back from our family reunion, and all my cousins (2nd once removed, or whatever) my age have all had boys at the same time. The oldest boys are all with in 6 months of each other, and the youngest are all within 3 months of each other. I’m so excited that they will all grow up together!

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