June 28, 2012
Two weeks ago, part of our family took a rather unusual “vacation”.
Unusual because…it was just half of the family.
 Also unusual because there were NO CONERTS involved.
It isn’t uncommon for us children to go on trips by ourselves. 
But it is uncommon for half of the family to leave for 9 days.
And it has been YEARS since we traveled anywhere without doing a concert along the way. =)
at 1am on Saturday morning, June the 9th, Mr. & Mrs. Bontrager & their four daughters packed themselves up and headed east.
The plans were to arrive that evening in time for the joint graduation party of two of our cousins, then to spend the following Sunday-Thursday in NY at my grandparents, and leave on Sunday to caravan with a bunch of the family to Delaware, where a cousin was getting married Saturday.
We had a marvelous time we had. 
The guys all voted to stay home since at least two were going to stay home anyway, and the rest didn’t want to miss out on the party they knew would happen. 
We girls were busy the week prior to leaving, filling the freezer with meals and giving the guys instructions on how to efficiently “keep house”. 
We knew it would be a great experience for them. =)
My favorite text that I received all week came from Carson. It was a picture of a big pile of laundry, and he simply said “I didn’t realize how much you do. Thank-you!”
That blessed my heart. =)
Allison & Liz helping Grandpa in his garden. Isn’t it immaculate?
We also happened to be in NY over strawberry season, so our visionary mother bought 80 quarts of strawberries for us to clean, freeze, & make into jelly. Kind aunts and grandma are now storing it for us until we pass through in September and pick it all up.
enjoying some luscious smoothies
funny little girls
A Stoltzfus cookout…
making mountain pies
One night Allison made bumbleberry pie.
We sat outside on the hill overlooking the lake….
I LOVE this view of the lake and mountains….SO beautiful.
Liz & Bekah eating lunch at Grandpas
One day a some of the girl cousins got together at Grandpas for the day. Here are some of them making lunch…
Grandpa caning a chair. Caning is a lost art nowadays but my grandpa does it beautifully.
This is tradition. We have pictures of Mitchell & I when we were this size, washing and drying dishes at grandpas.
Mom & I sewed several dresses for my grandma 
lunch with a bunch of the cousins
(this was the day the aunts/moms went out for lunch) 
We have this thing…for some reason everytime we do dishes with our cousins it gets crazy. 
Out for breakfast with the girls….
Mom, Rebecca, & Grandpa on an evening walk. 
I have the sweetest memories of walks with grandpa and my siblings on that road that passes their home. It is the most beautiful place for early morning walks.
This particular night…they saw a fawn on their walk.
Rebecca was thrilled. 
One night a group of us went to watch some cousins’ softball game.

special times….
Justin & Emily’s wedding was beautiful in every way. 
Last summer, at our Stoltzfus reunion, Justin stayed up til 1am with a group of us, telling us about how God led Him to Emily, and the guidelines and commitments they had made for their relationship. 
It was so amazing to see how the Lord has blessed them for their faithfulness in following Him.
Liz, Bekah, & Sarah Liz at the reception
Justin with his brothers….
The girls…..we’re from 5 different states so we had to get a picture of us together!

Saturday evening after the wedding we got together with a large group of moms siblings & cousins & their families.

For some, it was the first time meeting the 2nd cousins.

 The four Rebeccas
We arrived home Sunday afternoon, 9 days after we had left. The boys had the house fairly clean and they all looked well-fed so we knew they had been fine.
{actually…they said that had a MARVELOUS time..and wanted us to stay longer!}


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  1. I love the bridesmaids dresses in the first wedding! It's so nice to know that all these wonderful young men and women saved their first kiss for their wedding day. I thought that saving the first kiss for the wedding day was just something everybody did, and was unhappily surprised that someone I know and love didn't understand that at all. It's nice to know others share the same belief about that!

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