Let me explain. My mother's side of the family is quite large...like as in my grandmother has 20 something brothers and sisters...no lie. We are a close knit bunch known for our large feet, loud mouths, and outspoken ways. I have had the privilege to grow up knowing several great aunts and great uncles (there is only one living brother, Uncle Don, or as his sisters simply call him, "Brother") who are pretty FANTASTIC. My grandmother and her sisters, and the women in the generations after them (aunts, cousins, etc) are pretty amazing. (As are the men who are lucky enough to marry in to this bunch.) They are all strong, hilarious, crazy women. The women outnumber the men, but the guys in the family are pretty spectacular themselves!
We are always there for one another and these people are just "my people." We get together several times during the year; one Sunday in February, for Easter dinner, Labor Day weekend for our annual reunion, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. And there are always in-between times, when someones getting hitched or having a baby, and those tearful times when we're saying farewell to a loved one.
This post is about the first one, a Sunday in February.
The patriarchs of this family (my great-grandparents) are Ollie Belle & D.W. Armstrong. They were both born in February (although MANY years a part). For as long as I can remember, and probably even longer, the family would all get together and join great-grandma at church in honor of her and great-grandpa's birthday. After service we did what all good baptists to...we ate! Usually a fish-fry at Aunt Gen's house.
Even though great-grandma passed away several years ago (2001?), we still all go to the same church where she brought her family every Sunday (and the same church where my parents were married). We remember Ollie Belle & D.W. and the legacy they left. I didn't know D.W., but I knew Ollie Belle, and let me tell you, I have never met a stronger women. I don't know how many times she read her Bible cover to cover, but she knew her Jesus well and waged war on her knees like a mighty Saint. She worked hard, took care of her family, and always made time for everyone. Even in a family as large as hers, she made everyone feel special. I remember she would always call me "little sweetness" and my sister "little meanness." I mean, that should tell you right there what an awesome judge of character she was...hahaha! (Just kidding Stacy, now get back to work and go deliver a baby!) Great-grandma was a spit-fire of a gal. I only got a peek, a small view of her long, incredible life. I am so honored to be her great-granddaughter and hope that I can teach my girls about her and the life she led.
So this past Sunday, we all once again met at Aimwell Baptist Church to honor Ollie Belle & D.W. There were 50 or so of their descendants there to honor them! After that we went to Aunt Gen's house for some yummy Mexican food...don't even get me started on the cooks in this family!!! Yum-O!
Anyway, here are some pics from that day!
My grandma and three of her sisters cleaning up from lunch!