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Day 27: From a Distance

I have many of them that I love...but this would have to be my favorite.  This family tradition has seen us through a lot; losing one we love, introducing new friends, hanging out with old ones, pregnancy announcements, birthday dinners, meeting Rika, political discussions, frustrations vented, memories recounted, and just A LOT of laughs.

We call it Family Night.

One night a week, you can find our family eating dinner together.  It's been our most faithful tradition.  We started this when my Mom passed away 8 1/2 years ago. We said it was for our Dad...but it became a place of healing for all of us.  I'm convinced that our family is closer and stronger because of Family Nights.

When they first started, I was a college student and was annoyed with this new rule that, "You simply don't make plans on family night.  It has to be a priority."  I thought I had more important places to be...you know, hanging out with friends.  But I've found the ol' cliche to be true...friends come and go, but family is always there.

People often ask what we talk about...it would be about as you'd imagine.  The night usually consists of us laughing at one of the guys and some story they're sharing or a joke they've told!  All topics are open for discussion...politics, weird bodily functions, business, sharing recipes, a lot of teasing each other, usually one of the kids are being talked to about obeying, and always a memory or mention of my mom.  You can ask my friends, Kendra or Leah, who have spent many family nights with us that we're a quirky family...but one that I love.

I'm sure as a reader of my blog, you get tired of hearing me go on about my love for my family! But, I won't ever apologize for it, because when you lose one of them, you quickly learn that you can never say thank you and I love you, too many times.  Each one, my Dad, my Mom, Rika, my sisters, brother-in-laws, every little niece and nephew...have been a gift handed straight down from heaven above. And although I know I can never thank Him enough, I'll spend my life trying...

Thank you again, Dear God, for this family you've given me...and for this thing we call Family Night!


leah said...

oh this is such a neat picture...and yes! i am a witness and a huge believer in this family...thanks for making me FEEL like family when i got to join you!

love you all!

ajp said...

Wow, Tam, I agree. We grew up with putting family first, and I never really new why...till I "grew up" and moved, several times. And now I've come to appreciate the friendship of family. No matter where God takes you, your family is always there for you.

Amber said...

love . . .

heidi said...

Tam, I don't know what to say, but this is such a special post and picture. You have a gift for more than just taking good pictures. Love you!

Pam said...

Ditto to Heidi! Love it.

Rebekah said...

Loved this!! Glad you finally realized how awesome family nights are! haha!! i'm so glad our kids are growing up with this tradition and love it as much as we all do!

Sarah said...

This made me cry! I was always a little jealous of Leah attending your Family Nights :)

And by the way, quirky is a compliment...I LOVE quirky :)

smw said...

this picture is awesome. i've thought it would be fun to do a 'sisters night' patterned after this since they are both pretty close now. nothing's happened yet. :)

Tami said...

Leah...we believe in you and Ross too. :) I miss you at our Family Nights.
Boox...I like how you said you appreciate the "friendship of family"...what a great way to put it!
Heidi and A. Pam, thanks so much!...I hope "cooking" becomes one of those gifts in 2012. ;)
Sarah, you can come to a family night if you're ever in town! That would be so fun!!!
Shar, you should definitely do a sisters night!!! You three are such good friends, I think you'd love it!
Bek, I don't think we couldn't quit now even if we wanted 'cause the kids would insist on it!
Amb, I love it too. :)

Amber said...

SO GLAD you're back to posting! I missed you . . . Thanks for using your talents of photography, writing and friendship to bless others!

Anonymous said...

I loved this post. I too, definitely took my family for granted in the past. It took losing mom and becoming a mom myself to realize how BLESSED I am! Thanks for sharing a glimpse into this awesome tradition you have with your family.
Love ya~

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