I just got back from spending the last 5 days in Idaho. Shelly, my best friend's older sister (with whom she was very close to), passed away quite suddenly, and I went to Idaho to be there for Katie and her mourning family.
I was really torn on weather or not I should make the 11-12 hour drive alone with my kids or not, but in the end, I decided that it was worth it to be with Katie during a dark hour in her life. One that she was living only a year ago as well. The family has been through a lot.
It was a WONDERFUL trip. The kids traveled like true champions. They did wonderfuly considering they had no DVD player, no tape or CD player, and we drove through nothing for almost the entire trip. Seriously, they did so well! The car did well too. It was smoking so badly the last 1/2 of the trip, and I was a nervous wreck, but it got us home safe and sound. Few!
Katie lives in Pocatello, so I was able to stay with my family and be with them a ton while I spent the time that was needed with Katie.
The viewing, the cemetery and funeral were beautiful and heart wrenching all at the same time. Shelly was a beautiful person, and she will be missed. I came away feeling closer to the spirit and more determined to enjoy the moments I have with those I love. Katie looked exhausted, but has that pregnancy glow and is holding up well. She is very strong, and so is her family. Shelly's passing has been very rough on them, but they are survivors. I just hope that her husband and little baby boy can get the comfort and peace they need. My heart aches for them. She is due in two months with her third child...Levi. I love her so much. We have a bond that nothing will ever shatter. We met in first grade and our hearts have been knit together ever since. She is my best friend in the world. It was nice to be able to spend some time with her after the funeral and everything were done as well. I love hanging out with her.
Katie and her husband Landon looking at the casket.
At the cemetery.
A bunch of my very close and very out of control friends came to town for the funeral as well, and I cannot even express how incredibly wonderful and refreshing it was to be with them again. My spirit was soaring! It was a riot being with them again. Oh man, it was so much fun. We picked up right where we left off, and we talked and laughed over lunch as well as at the services. I don't think any of us have really changed much, and it was hilarious. Well, we were more serious at the funeral and everything, but we still talked non stop while driving and waiting for the services to begin. I miss them soooooooo much! I cried all the way home after I left them. They are so dear to me, and I truly miss them. There is nothing like a group of friends that you know you will NEVER lose and the friendship will NEVER fade, no matter the time or the distance.
Me, Becca, Heidi and Riss at "Food For Thought" downtown. It was a good time...a really good time!
I was also able to spend some good quality time with my family in the house I grew up in and love. I got to breathe in the fresh country air and my kids were able to romp around in the fields and the huge space that my parents home provides. It was so refreshing for all of us. I absolutely love the home I grew up in. I loved the wide open spaces, the sounds of the farmers in the fields and the horses and cows out roaming around. I loved running up on the canal and watching the pipe movers. I love everything about it, and I did at the time I was living at home as well. I never took it for granted. It is in my blood. It is so calming and great.
My family and I had a great time together. I went shopping with my mom (and we did well ;) ), had bon fires with the family, went out to lunch, went to my cousins baby shower and saw TONS of my relatives, watched my sister totally smoke everyone in her race at the track meet (she runs the 400m, same thing I did, but she is way faster), we stayed up late watching House, played in the yard, ate everything I have been so careful not to eat, but I didn't care, and relaxed. Tyler and Jessica came to visit as well. It was great to see my little brother and his wife again. They are so cute together.
Kelsey bouncing on the trampoline with the kiddos...they loved it.
Sam learning to jump on the trampoline. It was HILARIOUS! He loved it.
Mary's domain for the day...the fort. My dad made it, and it was a highlight of my childhood.
Setting up the trampoline with Tyler and Jessica. Mary did a great job helping.
Where there are Belnap's, there is fire. We love fire.
Hanging with the cousins at Diana's baby shower. Top (me and Jenny) Bottom (me and Diana) I got to see so many relatives at the shower, it was really fun!
A great visit with Grandpa. I love him so much.
Tyler got us all working on the yard one day. We set up the play area and cleaned up a little. Isn't my mom so cute!
Buddy's. We decided to break Kelsey and Jessica in to this place. The salad is so incredibly garlicy that it makes your eyes water. For some reason, we love it. Seriously, it makes you smell for days. I can still smell it on my skin. yummy.
The girls a Buddy's. Sorry the picture is dark.
All in all, it was such a wonderful trip. It was a "deep trip" in a way. I just felt like I re-connected with my roots and my dear friends, and my family, and my own heart. It was so refreshing and so uplifting. I laughed so hard I thought I would pass out, I cried and mourned and hurt so deeply, I felt satisfied and happy watching my kids run around in the fresh air, I reminisced like crazy when I went to my High School to watch Kelsey's track meet, I had a blast being with my friends, and I missed my dear friends and the good ol' days, and for one brief week in time, I felt like I was home.